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Old 08-11-2017, 10:15 AM   #1
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1979 Argosy Minuet 7.3 Metre
tulsa , Oklahoma
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Cabinet help...

I plan on building new cabinets for my minuet.. DO i use wood for everything? Does someone make cabinets i can buy? Is there a frame layout I can buy for the upper cabinets? Sorry for all the questions, I consider myself somewhat handy but this is my first time working on an RV and I would rather ask the Pros before I give it a go.
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Old 08-11-2017, 11:38 AM   #2
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Hi

Have you ever done cabinetry before? If not, how well are you set up for woodworking? You can indeed "learn by doing". It will take a while and there will be a two steps forward, one step back part of the process.

I would use wood for everything, but that's a personal preference. There are indeed some pretty fancy alternative materials out there. Custom cut aluminum is one I think about from time to time. Do up a design. Then work up the CAD drawings, send them off and back comes your "kit" for a cabinet. Sounds like way more work than I'm up for

Bob
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Old 08-11-2017, 03:35 PM   #3
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Did they put aluminum frame cabinets in the longer Minuets or did they use wood? If you have the old cabinets, you can use them for templates for fitting to the trailer. The older Airstreams use a wood face frame type of construction where the face of the cabinet is solid wood and the sides are 1/4" plywood. Wood cleats are glued and stapled to the frames so you have attachment for the plywood sides. Make the frames for the cabinet faces first, making sure that you have planned the openings you will need ahead of time. Oak or maple or birch will work for the frames. Use dowels or biscuits in the joints for strength and be sure you can lay the frames up square. You can buy clamps that you can use to square the joints and doweling fixtures so you can accurately place the dowels in the joints.

Get some cardboard sheets to use to make templates for the sides. The sides of the trailer are curved so you need to make a template for each plywood side.

The upper cabinets are face frame as well with plywood on the end and plywood dividers that are on the inside. The ends and dividers are attached to the ceiling as hangers for the cabinet.

Buy a good 1/4" staple gun, dowel fixture, square clamp, drill, etc and make sure to have a good table or radial arm saw that can cut true 90 degree cuts in the frame pieces and rip the plywood without splintering. Then plan it out and go slowly.
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Old 08-11-2017, 04:39 PM   #4
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Thank you for the good pointers, I am a woodworker by trade so ive got all the tools and hopefully enough of the skill do to this. Would it be ok to use self tappers into the frame or should i rivet the cabinets into the medal clad? I didn't think of the card board cut outs for the sides, thats a good call im glad you brought that up. Thank you very much
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Old 08-11-2017, 04:49 PM   #5
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Look for Liteply. You could also scribe the shapes to get them perfect.
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Old 08-12-2017, 05:11 PM   #6
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Airstream used a lot of sheet metal screws mounting the cabinets to the walls. The galley cabinet had a frame that the top sat on and that frame was screwed to the wall. Screwing the bottom rail of the face frame to the floor with #12 countersunk wood screws made the cabinetry pretty stable with the frame screwed to the wall. Cabinet ends usually had an aluminum extrusion that accepted the plywood and was deep enough that rivets could be put through the extrusion and plywood. The extrusions were riveted to the wall, rivets through the extrusion and plywood. The upper cabinets had the same type of extrusion that the dividers fit into, then plumbers strap could be used to attach the dividers to the extrusion: machine bolts there. Self drilling or self tapping screws aren't needed when attaching to the wall. #10 pan head and a pilot hole works well.
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Old 08-12-2017, 06:20 PM   #7
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Pics

These might help. I don't show the frames for the base of the upper cabinets, also screwed to the wall, but there are some views of the attachments and the aluminum extrusions used. The ends of the upper cabinets are fastened to L shaped extrusions that are riveted to the wall. I drove screws through the ends into the frame for the cabinet. I think you can make out the wall panels and the aluminum extrusions that hold them.
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Old 08-13-2017, 08:23 AM   #8
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Hi

Just as in any cabinetry "screwed and glued" has it's advantages and disadvantages. Great for holding together. A royal pain if it has to come apart. AS didn't seem to like the glue part of putting things together. That's not to say it can't be done. Just use a glue that doesn't bother aluminum. Also consider the "pull it apart" issues very carefully if you do. You still need a way to get it down.

Bob
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Old 08-13-2017, 12:44 PM   #9
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I haven't hung any new cabinets in my trailer, but if I did, I'd try to do what I do at home: use French cleats.

I can easily imagine mounting a cleat to the wall of the trailer which would hold up the bottom of the cabinet, then swing the cabinet up and just screw the top directly in.

Using a cleat in this fashion has several advantages:

-- When you put the cabinet up, resting it on the cleat during install gives makes it WAY easier to make nice, clean, secure screw connections for the rest of the mounting points.

-- Obviously, a cleat that spans the whole width of the cabinet provides a lot more bearing surface and stability. The matching cleat (attached to the cabinet) can be glued in place, again making a much stronger system.

-- if you wanted, you could expose the bottom of the cleat and make it functional in some way. e.g. attach a cork strip to it, add hooks, etc.

-- Mounting the cleat (without the cabinet) can be done really easily, can be made perfectly level/aligned, and you can ensure that you get it--and the screws that hold it--exactly where you want it in relation to the trailer frame/ribs. I can't imagine getting a better, tighter, cleaner connection to the wall.

I hope that helps!
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Old 08-14-2017, 08:31 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thiel View Post
I haven't hung any new cabinets in my trailer, but if I did, I'd try to do what I do at home: use French cleats.

I can easily imagine mounting a cleat to the wall of the trailer which would hold up the bottom of the cabinet, then swing the cabinet up and just screw the top directly in.

Using a cleat in this fashion has several advantages:

-- When you put the cabinet up, resting it on the cleat during install gives makes it WAY easier to make nice, clean, secure screw connections for the rest of the mounting points.

-- Obviously, a cleat that spans the whole width of the cabinet provides a lot more bearing surface and stability. The matching cleat (attached to the cabinet) can be glued in place, again making a much stronger system.

-- if you wanted, you could expose the bottom of the cleat and make it functional in some way. e.g. attach a cork strip to it, add hooks, etc.

-- Mounting the cleat (without the cabinet) can be done really easily, can be made perfectly level/aligned, and you can ensure that you get it--and the screws that hold it--exactly where you want it in relation to the trailer frame/ribs. I can't imagine getting a better, tighter, cleaner connection to the wall.

I hope that helps!
Hi

If you go this way (and it is tempting), consider "gapping" the cleat in some fashion where it goes over any rivets or seams. Some day you *may* need to pull an inner wall apart ....

Bob
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Old 08-14-2017, 03:54 PM   #11
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1979 Argosy Minuet 7.3 Metre
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awesome guys thank you so much ill post pics of the progress, on another note haha, right know the bath is set up witht the shower L toilet M and sink R, I am wanting to relocate the toilet to the right and extend the shower and delete the sink. The black tank is in good condition, should I use the same tank cut the flange from the existing toilet patch the hole and make a new one hole for toilet on the right or... try and find a tank that will fit and match the same drain pipe below? Option one sounds good as long as that is possible. i have no idea where to get the parts.
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Old 08-14-2017, 03:55 PM   #12
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1979 Argosy Minuet 7.3 Metre
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where did you get this bathroom layout?
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Old 08-18-2017, 08:42 AM   #13
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1979 Argosy Minuet 7.3 Metre
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Cabs

I also own a 7.3. Here are a couple of photos of cherry cabs I built and installed. The panel in the fridge is maple to help keep it light and airy. It isn't difficult but keeping the wt down was my priority. Panels are only 1/4" material drawers are 1/2". When properly built and fitted light wt can be quite strong.
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Old 08-18-2017, 08:51 AM   #14
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You can check my blog for my credenza rebuild project. I like to think I am decent at woodworking, but cabinet making is not my normal thing and requires extra care.
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