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Old 01-20-2014, 11:25 PM   #1
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Companies for Interior Remodel

Hopefully this a good place to post this thread. Sorry, newbie here.

We have a 27FB International with 3 kids and are looking to remove the Queen bed and install bunk beds in the bedroom space. Ideally two up top, and two below with one of the below bunks being wider for both my husband and I.

A lot of the work we can do ourselves, but are looking for a company to help with the metal framing of the top bunks and tying those into the rivets. My husband can do woodwork, but metal is beyond us and they need to be sturdy.

There's also the dilemma of removing the top storage cabinet. We assume the "corners" (since they are not really square can I still call them that?) don't have the aluminum interior on this model since they are all covered up.

Does anyone have suggestions for companies we could use? We've looked at Timeless in Denver (western US is preferable) but would like some options.

TIA!
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Old 01-21-2014, 05:06 AM   #2
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If you're doing the woodwork, you don't necessarily need an RV/Airstream remodel company. However, you do need someone who understands (or could be informed) the internal rib and stringer construction inside the shell.

If you don't use a knowledgeable Airstream remodeler, one thing you should be careful about is the very significant change in the shape of the shell as you tow and the shell flexes. As the shell bends, the floor to ceiling height can change 2 inches or more (imagine bending a tube--as it bends the cross section becomes oval). If your bunk beds are supported on vertical posts that attach to the ceiling and floor, you will introduce local stress at the point they attach at the ceiling. Don't let this stop you--the existence of floor to ceiling partitions in all models of Airstreams says you can do it, just be aware design for the movement.

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Old 01-21-2014, 07:35 AM   #3
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Old 01-21-2014, 07:37 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jesscurren View Post
Does anyone have suggestions for companies we could use? We've looked at Timeless in Denver (western US is preferable) but would like some options.
Have you considered talking to a boatbuilder? Building a boat interior runs afoul of many of the same problems you'll face in your trailer, and they often have innovative fixes for those problems.

On a related subject, bunk bed design, the American Bureau of Shipping's Publication 102, Guide for Crew Habitability on Ships, offers these dimensions as the minimum requirement for crew bunks:
Aisle between facing bunks, 36"
Height of bottom bunk off floor, 12"
Head clearance over each bunk (top & bottom, measured from top of mattress to the lowest overhead obstruction), 24"
Inside dimensions of bunk, 31" 78"
Privacy curtains running the full length of each bunk
Plus, the top bunks should have handholds and steps of some kind (i.e. not using the bottom bunk itself as a step to get in and out).
Anything less than these requirements is generally considered uncomfortable for long-term use.
A small shelf attached to the wall near the head of the bed for the occupant to set eyeglasses, an alarm clock, etc. would not be amiss, nor would a reading light near the head of the bed. But ABS doesn't require these on crew bunks.

You may not be able to meet all of those minimum requirements in your trailer, but the closer you can get, the more comfortable the bunks will be.
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Old 01-21-2014, 09:12 AM   #5
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Originally Posted by Protagonist View Post
..On a related subject, bunk bed design, the American Bureau of Shipping's Publication 102, Guide for Crew Habitability on Ships, offers these dimensions as the minimum requirement for crew bunks:

... a reading light near the head of the bed. But ABS doesn't require these on crew bunks...
You can create small, efficient reading lights with LED discs. This particular fixture ensures the light illuminates only the intended reading area and doesn't shine across the isle. It also has dim setting to use as a night light.

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Old 01-21-2014, 12:39 PM   #6
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Many of us have built bunks-- I'm sure you can do it yourself. We are currently building our second bunkhouse. Keep in mind that ribs were not intended for bunk suspension-- in some vintage models you will find bunks suspended from the ceiling, but those ribs were reinforced only in models ordered as bunk modems from the factory. Just FYI. Our bunks are very comfortable and my husband and I sleep on then when the kids are not with us!
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Old 01-21-2014, 04:20 PM   #7
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Old 01-22-2014, 09:33 AM   #8
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Wow! Thanks you guys! This is awesome. Definitely some things we hadn't thought of before. While we are not in a huge hurry, my kids are anxious for their own beds and space so hopefully soon!
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Old 01-22-2014, 09:34 AM   #9
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Any suggestions, photos, or tips on the bunk beds you have built? We'd love any help we can get!
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Old 02-03-2014, 11:23 PM   #10
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Adam Blair at Avalon RV in Benecia, CA did a major interior renovation for us - very skilled and creative at working on Airstreams and other brands. I've posted a lot of pics on this forum if his work. Highly recommend him.
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