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Old 08-21-2011, 10:29 AM   #295
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Still more storage

I purely hate wasted space in the trailer. I happened to remove one of the galley drawers and found that there was a large empty space behind the narrow area under the shelf to the right of the drawers. There were two ducts from the furnace in the space, but I found that they could easily be pushed down and back so that the space could be used.

I cut a rectangular hole in the cabinet and reinforced the right side with a 3/4" poplar nailing strip. The left (forward) side already had a nailing strip there. I built a topless plywood box, 12" deep to fit the opening and installed it using my nail gun. I then trimmed the front with some left-over oak trim from the new cabinet tops.

The new space is now used to store paper towels and toilet paper.
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Old 08-28-2011, 11:11 AM   #296
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Pet and loss proofing

I have two complaints about the way Airstream designed the cabinets in my Classic.
  1. Things drop down and get lost in the "trough" against the wall beneath the sinks.
  2. A small pet can get under the cabinets and be difficult to extract.
This is true both in the bathroom and galley. We travel with cats and I have more than once coaxed a cat out from behind the stove. I have also retrieved small items such as lids from under the cabinets with difficulty.

My solution is to turn the trough into a shelf with a simple assembly of 1/8" plywood and 3/4" square soft wood. The shelf is screwed into the aluminum inner wall with 1 1/4" screws. The propane line is not crushed ... the aluminum wall easily gives a bit.

I also nailed a flat piece of plywood against the vertical wall on the left to block access behind the stove.

Since this photo was taken, I have Velcroed several plastic bins on the shelves to hold small items such as soap bars scratchers, and the like.
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Old 08-28-2011, 11:16 AM   #297
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By the way

Notice the shiny aluminum sheet at the left in the above photo. It works wonders in the oven when placed underneath pans to keep things from over-cooking on the bottom. Lots lighter than carrying a stone for the purpose.
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Old 09-24-2011, 09:52 AM   #298
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Some new updates

The cloth light-colored rocking recliners that replaced the original couch turned out to be a nightmare to keep clean, especially the armrests that constantly looked dirty with oil from our arms. After a lot of searching to find leather recliners that would fit in the space available, I ordered two reclining chairs with footstools. They really look great and I am really pleased with the quality and seating comfort.

I also ordered new flooring to replace the ugly vinyl that Airstream had installed in the galley area. The original always looked dirty because of the pattern. Additionally, a malfunctioning heater last winter had left a nasty burn scar in a very obvious place. The new floor went down quickly on top of the original vinyl and looks a lot better since it nicely matches the woodwork and the new walnut-colored chairs.

I still need to install the quarter-round around the periphery of the floor.
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Old 09-24-2011, 10:22 AM   #299
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Let me recommend the Leatherique line of products for those chairs (and anything vinyl). A search of auto detailing or high-dollar car resto sites can make one a believer. I have used them for many years now for house and car (and saddle).

As always, your ideas are well-expressed and well-executed. One of my continuing favorite threads.

.
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Old 11-22-2011, 04:32 PM   #300
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My old fan finally gave up the ghost, so I ordered the cooling kit from Snyder. I was surprised to find that the plenum in the kit is a modified plastic eaves-trough downspout adapter. I like that kind of thinking!

I pulled the fridge out, using a wooden box as support since the bottom of the fridge is 13" off the floor. I used some of the slippery moving pads under the box to make it easier to slide the heavy Dometic. The first photo is the fridge mostly out of the cabinet.

The second photo is the cooling fins and the third photo is the plenum slipped into place for a test fit. The tape around the fan protects the wiring before installation.

A thermostat is clamped on the tube at the top right, above the burner and the wires are led down to the rear of the fridge. In my case, the wires were too short for the size of the fridge, so I terminated them with crimp-on ends. Next trip to the trailer, I will extend them and tie them in to the 12v power. I had already installed a cigarette lighter outlet behind the fridge. I'll just use the pigtail from the old fan to plug the new fan in there.

If you do this mod, be prepared to get absolutely filthy from all of the road dust covering the rear of the fridge. Also, the kit installed by Dometic to prevent fires if ammonia leaks has to be partially disassembled to disconnect the propane lines and remove one of the lag bolts in the rear of the fridge.

Good news was that I checked the burner flue and the little twisty flue baffle was clean as a whistle after 4 years of using the fridge. That says that I have a well adjusted gas flame.

John, I've been reading your good info here and in another thread concerning the Snyder fan assembly/installation. Links to Snyder aren't working for some reason. Can you tell me what size approximately that fan is at the bottom of the assembly? Also, that "down spout" arrangment, is there baffling inside that thing to direct air across that entire coil? Any info is much appreciated.

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Old 11-22-2011, 05:05 PM   #301
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John, I've been reading your good info here and in another thread concerning the Snyder fan assembly/installation. Links to Snyder aren't working for some reason. Can you tell me what size approximately that fan is at the bottom of the assembly? Also, that "down spout" arrangment, is there baffling inside that thing to direct air across that entire coil? Any info is much appreciated.

Jim
There is no baffling. The plastic down spout part is a sort of Vee shape and air goes to about 2/3 of the fins. The rest of the fins probably get some benefit from the fan airflow dragging more air with it.

The fan is about 4" square, as I recall.

This link just worked for me. Snyders RV Refrigeration - Home
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Old 11-22-2011, 05:12 PM   #302
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There is no baffling. The plastic down spout part is a sort of Vee shape and air goes to about 2/3 of the fins. The rest of the fins probably get some benefit from the fan airflow dragging more air with it.

The fan is about 4" square, as I recall.

This link just worked for me. Snyders RV Refrigeration - Home
Thanks, John. Sounds like a bit of Vernuli effect. And thanks for a working link. I didn't think to try a /home addr.

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Old 11-22-2011, 06:42 PM   #303
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Pahaska, just discovered your thread. (read all 22 pages) Love your ideas for claiming all the storage possible from wasted/hidden spaces. You are one talented person!
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Old 11-22-2011, 06:56 PM   #304
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Yup, we needs to get PAHASKA and BOBThompson together to send to Ohio and shew them fellers how to really get'er done at JC.
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Old 11-23-2011, 01:00 AM   #305
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john, i also just discovered and read this thread. you the man! :-)

i had to chuckle over some of your comments about having someone that has actually lived in an airstream do the designing. in the first month in my new trailer i have said a few times, "what were they thinking". lol.

it seems that some of your improvements have made it to the new models but i have to report that sharp edges are still here :-( i may have to start wearing a bike helmet and chaps!

i'll have to start a thread. my mods are limited to adjustments since i don't have your skills but i sure appreciate your artistic skills with wood!
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Old 01-20-2012, 12:19 AM   #306
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The latest problem

The worst feature of the 28 is that the black water dump valve is too close to the rear tire and the actuating rod for the valve has a jog of 3" or 4" to get the handle away from the tire.

Almost from the start, I could easily pull the handle to dump the black tank, but I would always have to get down on one knee, reach under the trailer, and push the valve closed by grasping the rod. The thin aluminum rod was not stiff enough to push the valve closed using the handle; the rod would simply deform. Trying to lubricate the valve did not help appreciably. Others have had similar problems. I have griped about this in the past, but could never come up with a good solution.

At our last trip, the problem came to a head. When I pulled the handle to dump, the rod simply broke off at the bend closest to the valve. I was able to reach under and operate the valve by grasping the stub of the rod, but at 79 years old, I'm not at all fond of the getting down part, especially at a dump station.

I think I have a good solution. I will trim the straight rod stub and thread it. I have some strips of chrome-moly steel left over from a glider-building project some years ago. I'll make a flat steel extension that will go through guides to a handle out where I can reach it easily. The steel is plenty stiff and I won't have to worry about it ever bending or breaking.

I'll tackle the project this weekend and post some photos when I am done.
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Old 01-20-2012, 01:37 PM   #307
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Airstream motorhomes have a neat electronic box that feeds the microwave and water heater. ...
I realize this is an older post, but I just had a chance to read this fascination thread from the beginning. This switch caught my interest in particular. Do you recall if there was a particular make/model on it, or do you think this is an Airstream only item? I'm not near any Airstream dealers.

Your mods are both innovative and practical, but also well thought out and compliment your trailer very well. Congratulations on your work and thanks for sharing them, especially the pictures.
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Old 01-20-2012, 02:02 PM   #308
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I realize this is an older post, but I just had a chance to read this fascination thread from the beginning. This switch caught my interest in particular. Do you recall if there was a particular make/model on it, or do you think this is an Airstream only item? I'm not near any Airstream dealers.
I just recently copied the info on the face of the switch for another forum member. The way the box is installed, I could not read everything, but here is what I could read:
I can only read part of the lettering on the box because of the way it is mounted, Here's what I can read:

???? Energy Select Switch
INTELLEC
00-0714-000

Apparently, it is a common item in the motorhome world.
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