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Old 04-11-2015, 01:40 PM   #113
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Anthem , Arizona
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Hope's Log - Armstrong AC and Shroud

After 44 years, I suspected the original Armstrong AC unit was in need of replacement. However, after removing the old plastic extruded shroud, which crumbled into small pieces in my hands, and cleaning years of pine needles and dirt from the exterior part of the AC unit, I was pleasantly surprised to find that the AC unit works great!

In less than 20 minutes, the AC brought the interior of Hope down from 102 degrees (Typical Airstream interior temperature in April in Phoenix, Arizona) down to a very comfortable 80 degrees at the far corners near the floor!

So, after learning that Inland RV had a new fiberglass shroud, my wife and I enjoyed a 2-day road trip to California to go pick it up (The trip cost less for gas and hotel than the UPS shipping cost would have been for the oversized shroud dimensions).

I used aluminum tape to seal up all the seams of the exterior unit and sprayed two coats of flat white paint on the shroud before installing it. Again, special thanks to Andy for letting me know that 4 original screws are all that is needed to secure the new shroud (Previous owners used 8 screws and gobs of silicone caulking to try to secure the old shroud).

This new shroud will definitely last another 40 years (unless I drive under a low hanging branch or bridge )
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Old 04-11-2015, 01:54 PM   #114
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Hope's Log - New 7-way flat connections and Reese Hitch

Back in May, 2014, when my wife and I purchased Hope, I had originally wanted to strip the interior and focus on the really fun redesign of her bathroom, bunks and kitchen. However, it became obvious that after removing everything from the interior, I couldn't start to rebuild Hope until I addressed the axles and brakes, which changed the entire plan.

After nearly a year of on again/off again work on Hope, I am happy to report that she is a joy to pull down the highway as an "Aluminum Tent" thanks to brand new axles, electric brakes, brake controller, 7-way pin connections and cable and a Reese weight distribution and anti-sway dual cam towing system.

The short time I spent speaking with Andy at Inland RV and the physics lesson he taught me provided valuable information about what to purchase and how to configure my 2014 Toyota Tacoma to properly tow my 23 foot Airstream. This saved me from second guessing all that I had read on the forum and the various hitch manufacturing web sites.

Now, I can begin the process of installing the new plumbing, insulation and buttoning up the belly pan then get back to designing Hope's interior! WhooHoo!!!
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Old 04-12-2015, 08:19 AM   #115
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Excellent choice , Kei. The dual cam, properly set up, works very well.
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Old 04-12-2015, 07:54 PM   #116
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Hello Bullit

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bullit View Post
Hey Kei
These wires all go to the front under the window... Could be ambilical to tow vehicle. Attachment 213089Attachment 213090. Was able to follow large round white wire all the way to the Univolt. Others go up behind front cap to control pannel

Also have pic of floor rot in front of doorAttachment 213091
Hey Bullit,
I was just reviewing old posts and wanted to catch up to see how you went about fixing the rotted floor in the front of your door. I'm going to be addressing a similar spot on my Airstream next weekend.
Regards,
Keith
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Old 04-13-2015, 07:55 AM   #117
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Mornin Kei
I have not addressed the floor rot Tet. Besides time, money and good weather running in short supply, I am going about this resto-mod in a lil different way. Theoretically... I am addressing the shell and waterproofing (to include initial polishing, windows, seems, vents, A/C, etc) before removing the it and rebuilding or replacing the frame and floor. This (again theoretically) will allow me to work on the interior without as many leaks.

Good weather has arrived and I should be back to it this week

Yours is looking really good


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Old 04-15-2015, 09:25 PM   #118
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Thanks!

Quote:
Originally Posted by blkmagikca View Post
Excellent choice , Kei. The dual cam, properly set up, works very well.
Thank you, blkmagikca! I took the Airstream down the highway and tested its sway and recovery and really can tell the improvement. Now it's time to start on the floor and water system!
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Old 05-18-2015, 10:10 PM   #119
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Hope's Log - Repairing the floor rot

After a thorough inspection of the floor using an ice pick to search from soft spots, I realized that in addition to the rot in front of the door, I needed to replace the corner of the floor in the back curb-side. Using a Harbor Freight cutting tool, I was able to slowly and methodically remove the rotted material without too much effort.

The cutting of the new 3/4 plywood went smoothly too, however, fitting the two new pieces under the shell and into the opening took a bit of finesse but it turned out very nicely and I'm so glad to be done.

The next objective is to bang out the banana wraps as best I can and start to put Hope back together...
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Old 05-18-2015, 10:48 PM   #120
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Hope's Log - Repairing the Banana Wraps

I had hoped to be able to purchase new banana wraps in order to avoid trying to bang out all the dents in the original ones. Unfortunately, the only reproduction wraps I can find are black plastic and not the look I'm going for...

So, I grabbed my auto body hammers and got to work banging out the wraps with a bag of play sand that I placed in a cloth shopping bag. Although the wraps were in pretty bad shape, several hours of banging produced fair results.

The first rivet to begin the rebuilding process was added to the front street-side banana wrap! It felt great to start to add the pieces back onto Hope!

The next step after adding the banana wraps is to prepare the interior for paint. Once the interior is painted, I will be able to start building the bathroom and plumbing the tub, sink and toilet...that's when the real fun will start!
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Old 05-18-2015, 10:58 PM   #121
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Hope's Log - Painting the Interior

Last May I attempted to paint the interior, but the temperatures got into the 100s and prevent me from doing so. Luckily, that forced me to concentrate on getting the axles and brakes installed.

Well, it's the middle of May in Phoenix Arizona and I have been very lucky with the weather. This weekend it was in the upper 70s to mid 80s and perfect for spending 16 hours scuffing, cleaning, taping then painting the entire Airstream from back to front.

25 cans of Krylon Fusion for Plastic gave Hope a nice clean, glossy white look. (Goodbye sticky, yellow, stinky vinyl walls).

Next week I finally can start custom designing the bathroom!!!
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Old 05-19-2015, 08:41 AM   #122
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Nice work!
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Old 05-19-2015, 10:57 AM   #123
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Thank you youngpeck! After many months of hard work, the positive results are finally beginning to show! I look forward to starting the custom build with new materials!
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Old 05-19-2015, 05:04 PM   #124
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It sounds like krylon fusion is the current favorite for redoing the interior vinyl walls. Looking good!

I will be painting my 1976 Tradewind soon and also planning on using it. Where did you source all the cans? My local Wally World had 9, but the other one in town was out.


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Old 05-19-2015, 09:17 PM   #125
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Hello millertimeUS!

I searched the Internet for the best price for the Krylon Fusion, but the shipping costs made it cost prohibitive.

So, I went to my local Ace Hardware, bought the two cans off the shelf then ordered 24 more cans at $5.99 a piece (and no shipping cost). The paint arrived in 5 days.

Best wishes for your upcoming paint job!
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Old 06-06-2015, 06:25 PM   #126
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Hope's Log: Creating the new bathroom - June, 2015

After a year of removing the original interior, replacing axles/brakes and installing a new weight distribution, anti-sway hitch and a new AC shroud to the exterior, I am finally beginning to renovate the interior!
Although the temperatures in Phoenix are now in the 100’s, I have created a strategy to work in my cul-de-sac each weekend in the shade and hopefully be able to continue to work throughout June, July and August to get the bathroom, bunks and possibly the kitchen installed before a camp outing with a friend at the Grand Canyon in October. We’ll see how that goes…
The first step was to install a PVC floor liner after applying 3 coats of paint to the plywood floor.
I next created a new, wider bathroom counter using original aluminum that I removed last year. Rather than using plastic extruded sink and counters, the bathroom has a new round, stainless steel sink centered with the back window and will have a hardwood counter top.
The new 24” x 32” tub was installed using a ¾” plywood compartment I constructed. I cut out the middle of each side to reduce the weight. I also used the ¾” plywood to construct the compartment that contains the original black tank.
Once the positions of the tub and toilet were established, I was able to begin measuring and cutting the ¼” plywood panels that will be the backer material for aluminum I intend to add to the walls. I’m still debating whether or not to use standard pop rivets or Olympic rivets throughout the interior. The smooth Olympic rivets will look nicer and reduce the chance of water entering the center of the standard rivet. I will need to make a decision soon, since I will be cutting the aluminum in three weeks when my family returns from a vacation out of state.
The biggest challenge was bending new aluminum channel to match the curved walls. Luckily, I found some bendable aluminum from Home Depot. To figure out the compound curved walls, I used cardboard that was shipping material used to protect the 4’ x 12’ aluminum sheet. Each wall took several hours to measure, cut, re-measure, cut…but the extra time paid off.
One of the risks working outside throughout the summer is the wildlife. While working outside the Airstream a young roadrunner came up to me clucking its beak (They don’t go, “beep, beep” like on the cartoon). Roadrunners are pretty fearless, but don’t usually walk up and hang out with humans, but this little guy was so friendly, my wife was actually able to pick him up! After an hour we decided to put him back in the desert next to our house, but when walking into the desert, my son noticed a 3 – ½ foot Western Diamondback Rattlesnake! (They are considered one of the more venomous rattlesnakes and was only 25 feet from my Airstream!). After taking pictures of the rattlesnake, it actually started to rattle its tail, which is pretty unnerving then slithered off into the river rocks that are part of the cul-de-sac’s drainage system. Needless to say, we look intently when walking into the desert during warm weather months!
I’m looking forward to continuing to build the bathroom, but will have to wait until after I return from vacation.
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