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Old 01-22-2010, 06:13 PM   #1
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Questions about interior wood

I'm in the process of replacing all of that way past ugly plastic in the interior of the Overlander with real wood (cabinets, bulkheads, gaucho and so on). My brother-in-law recommended that I keep the window shades closed to prevent the wood from being ruined by UV from the Sun. Generally, I leave the windows in the galley and the living room uncovered to allow some sunshine and heat in there during the cold months. The rest of the windows stay covered year round.

The new wood is stained a reddish color with two coats of polyurethane. Whadda y'all think? Covered or not?

TIA,

Jim
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Old 01-22-2010, 06:22 PM   #2
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I always keep my shades pulled throughout the trailer when I'm not using it. The UV light from the sun not only fades wood finishes, but it also is very hard on upholstery in the trailer. I don't think the cold weather has any effect on the interior if the shades are pulled IMHO.
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Old 01-22-2010, 06:58 PM   #3
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Some woods and finishes are more susceptible to fading than others, and some woods such as cherry actually darken rather than fade. Dark stained wood fades more than light stained wood, in general. The effect of direct sunlight on wood veneers is really pretty severe. It will dry the surface veneer out too quickly compared to the core, and you will get very fine cracks developing in the finish, and then into the veneer itself. That eventually leads to seperation of the surface veneer. A little moisture added to the situation will speed it up drastically.
Your woodwork will last longer and look better if you keep it in the dark and keep it cool. For storage I keep all my windows covered up, and leave a vent cracked open just a hair to allow heat to escape on those really hot days.
As a side note: when you see really nice furniture sitting out at a yardsale or parking lot sale in direct sunlight, by the time you got there it was probably damaged. It can happen very quickly.

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Old 01-22-2010, 07:20 PM   #4
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Also the Curtains

Keeping the curtains closed is good for the wood but bad for the curtains as they would then fade. Then again some windows also came with roller shades, which is probably the cheapest and easiest to replace. So I guess in priority it's protect the wood first, curtains second, shades last. What do you other experts say?
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Old 01-22-2010, 07:21 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim & Susan View Post
I'm in the process of replacing all of that way past ugly plastic in the interior of the Overlander with real wood (cabinets, bulkheads, gaucho and so on). My brother-in-law recommended that I keep the window shades closed to prevent the wood from being ruined by UV from the Sun. Generally, I leave the windows in the galley and the living room uncovered to allow some sunshine and heat in there during the cold months. The rest of the windows stay covered year round.

The new wood is stained a reddish color with two coats of polyurethane. Whadda y'all think? Covered or not?

TIA,

Jim
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Old 01-22-2010, 07:38 PM   #6
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No Idea

But I cant wait to see the pictures of the insides.
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Old 01-22-2010, 07:54 PM   #7
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I made my own window covers to fit into the screen holders. They are 1/8" thick mahogany plywood, with a layer of Prodex insulation laminated to one side. I install them with the Prodex against the window. I can completely black-out my interior on the brightest of days and increase my insulation factor at the same time. It's perfect for storage also, as no one can even look in through a window, and it stays cooler and darker than anything else I could think of.

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Keeping the curtains closed is good for the wood but bad for the curtains as they would then fade. Then again some windows also came with roller shades, which is probably the cheapest and easiest to replace. So I guess in priority it's protect the wood first, curtains second, shades last. What do you other experts say?
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Old 01-22-2010, 07:55 PM   #8
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Covered. The sun will fade anything in its path. Shades and curtains are usually made to handle the UV rays and are easily replaceable compared to the wood in your trailer.
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Old 01-22-2010, 08:23 PM   #9
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But I cant wait to see the pictures of the insides.
Well, since you asked Professor...

It looks a little rough in there now, I'm going to pull it over to my buddy Eric's
tomorrow to finish that cabinet around the 'fridge. Next up is the Gaucho replacement. Hope to turn that into a queen sized sleeping area, dining table, TV viewing, home theater, stereo playing, etc. place to relax. Well, you get the idea.

Jim
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Old 01-22-2010, 08:31 PM   #10
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looks great, I want to do mine now,
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Old 01-22-2010, 08:39 PM   #11
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Wowsers, thats all net!
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Old 01-22-2010, 09:52 PM   #12
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wow..the wood replacement looks so, so good. Love the movement in the wood. What kid of wood? Did you use the old aluminum frames and insert the new wood? Are you replacing your kitchen too? LOOKS FANTASTIC!!!!!!
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Old 01-22-2010, 10:37 PM   #13
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Tex, Basically what we did was use the old plastic parts (walls or bulkheads, bed frame, etc.) as patterns. The wood is 1/4" birch plywood that comes in 4' x 8' sheets. Each sheet runs about $16/$17 per sheet and there is quite a bit of waste. But, my friend Eric has a wood shop and uses the left over pieces for his projects (that he sells for real money ).

The birch is finished with Minwax #245 (IIRC) Pecan stain. I need to check that number, btw. Then two coats of polyurethane. The silver trim is the original trim from the factory. It was originally a brown to gold color. I washed it, then cleaned again with acetone. Next came a coat of automotive primer, then a coat of automotive silver paint. I really like the look of it. I'm using stainless steel screws and rivets to fasten everything together. When you look at it up close, the "red" stain and the silver fasteners look really great together.

This is the truly fun part of the restoration. Things are starting to "look" nice. It's what I've been waiting for these many years. Your trailer has natural wood, IIRC, not all that nasty plastic stuff like ours. You could probably refinish the wood and it would look great! Let us see your handy work.

Jim
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Old 01-22-2010, 10:53 PM   #14
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Looks Great!!!

You found some exceptional birch plywood. Most of the stuff I have gotten doesn't have nearly the character that does. The finish still doesn't look as dark as I was expecting from your initial post. That will also make fading less of an issue.

I would still close the curtains/blinds when I wasn't looking out the windows.

I look forward to more photos of your progress. My '83 Excella has what may be the penultimate ugly plastic on the bulkheads. If you look at the top in this photo, you can see the plastic peeling back! I'm looking at options for redoing the bulkheads and cabinet fronts.
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