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Old 05-23-2012, 09:49 PM   #161
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Originally Posted by Steve Bryant View Post
Aage,
How goes the furnace installation?
Welll, as often seems to happen in our family unit, priorities changed. The DW's sister and brother-in-law returned from their winter place to take up residence again in the park where Henri the Sov also lives. In fact, they are adjacent to us, just across a little road through the park. It turns out they had to replace their coach battery, and repair some block footings that support their SOB, so who do you think got to work with them on doing that? You got it.

And of course, there were a zillion other little things to do, like get the boat in the water for the season, cut the lawn, and so on and so forth, etc.

Also, I had a shock with the tool side of things. For cutting up the old shroud (metal cabinet), Phil used "small air driven right angled high speed grinder with thin cutting wheels". I discovered that my simple pancake compressor would not drive that tool (which was $100 at the local Home Depot, by the way!) since my compressor has no air filter, or oil feeder. In other words, I would need to spend close to what I spent on the furnace to get that equipment. I don't feel ready to buy that much toolage.

So I bought a couple of packages of the Dremel small cutting stones. Last time I tried cutting discs on anything like I am going to do, it was a joke: the thin discs heated up and flew apart in a matter of minutes. So, I am hoping with a little patience, the stones will do what I want. I also have a heavy shear, but the metal appears to be beyond what I could use that to cut. I have a friend with a nibbler, so if what I have doesn't work, hopefully I can try that method.

I'm back there alone tomorrow, so will attack it and see what becomes of it all. Will let you know.

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Originally Posted by Splitrock View Post
I was wrong. Mine's under the sink.
I wondered when you said it was below the cooker, but I wasn't there, and you were. Thanks for letting me know.
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Old 06-04-2012, 11:17 PM   #162
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Aage,
How goes the furnace battle?
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Old 06-10-2012, 03:48 PM   #163
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Aage,
How goes the furnace battle?
Hi, Steve, and sorry for the delay.

The short answer is that it went very well, although it was a lot more work that I had imagined!

I have been down at the camp where Henry the Sov lives for about three weeks now, and the WiFi access was spotty and inconvenient, so I limited myself to only using it for email.

I am working on putting the photos I managed to take with the text of what I did so that you can see how it went. Should have that in a day or so.
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Old 06-10-2012, 04:54 PM   #164
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This is great news! Don't worry abut the delay. I'm about a month behind in posting what I've been doing on sheet metal work in one of my own threads.

Regarding WiFi, do you have some sort of amplifier or repeater in Henri to boost your WiFi signal? I've considered looking into that sort of thing some day.
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Old 06-13-2012, 02:25 PM   #165
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Finally got it done!

Well, about a week and a half ago, I finally got my brand-new-purchased-8-months-ago Suburban NT-30 installed IN the TT, after getting the 38-year-old NT-32 OUT of the TT. It was a fairly tough a job, for two main reasons: no room to work inside the cavity, since I didn’t want to take the galley cabinet apart, and the NT-30 isn’t a direct replacement for the NT-32, as the Airstream “Bulletin 16” tells us.

The new one is smaller, and as others have kindly commented in this thread, that means some artful fabricating. I was fortunate enough to have the expert help of a fellow camper here at the lovely park that my 1974 Sovereign of the Road (Henri) lives in. Sadly, he wishes to remain anonymous. I say sadly because | would love to show the man that, at a senior age, is still able to demonstrate the top-flight skills of an inventive mechanical engineer who fearlessly went into the operation we performed and brought us through it with an aplomb and a coolness of spirit in approaching the trickiest problems that simply amazed me.

Oh, I would have likely gotten it done, but not nearly so cleanly and quickly as Mike did, despite a lack of readily available, easy-to-use materials. You will see that, with the exception of one 3-foot piece of 1¼” X 1¼” slotted steel used to make new “rails” (to support the new furnace high enough so as to make the use of the existing holes possible), the only other parts we used were fabricated from sheet steel from the door of the original furnace. I got to know every hardware store in a 30 mile radius of the camp where Henri lives.


Now, that part isn’t new as others doing this job have already posted about using a similar strategy, but we also used the steel to create the skirt to connect the hot air output of the new furnace to the hole of the existing plenum, now 1¼” below the furnace's outlet. In our job, the skirt is precision-made and doesn’t rely on much aluminum duct tape to keep the hot air moving into the plenum.

Anyway, here’s the story:

After disconnecting all the wires, gas pipe, outside plate holding the fresh air inlet and the exhaust, removing all the screws I could find, while I could get the furnace to move towards me, it maddeningly refused to slide out through the opening between the upper and lower tracks for the tambour doors. Something was still holding it in. I was able to loosen the latch on the top of the NT-32’s housing by taking out the leftmost rivet of the shelf above it, and “hooking” it with the aluminum “shepherd’s crook” that came with the Zip-Dee awning. It clicked open, and I was able to remove the front door.



The NT-32. Not beautiful to see, but here it is:



So, stuck at this point, I grabbed my largest crowbar, rested it on my shoulder, and went to tell “Mike” (as I will call my expert helper) that if he wanted to see something funny, to come over and watch me finesse the furnace out. He laughed as he looked at the crowbar, and followed me back to Henri the Sov. When we got there, he peered all around the furnace, tilted it forward, at which point I could see the front door catch, which was now obviously what had been holding the furnace in. With the tilt, the top of the furnace came right out, so we tilted it back to level, and the rest followed it. Yay!




I cheered and knew immediately that if I was to succeed, I would need Mike’s help. I asked him at that point if he had some free time to help me out. He replied that I didn’t even need to buy the beer; he was bored and this furnace was just the thing to keep him occupied for a bit.

With the outer shell of the old NT-32 housing still in place, Mike cut down the sides on a 45° angle using an old, but really solid stainless steel B&D jigsaw. With a bit of judicious bending, this allowed us to remove the entire housing leaving only the original plenum. The new rails to support the NT-30 one and a quarter inches higher went on and we placed the new housing (without the innards) to see what needed removing from the plenum’s opening, then cut that out too with the jigsaw.

What was to cut off (the three sides of the old housing):



What was to trim off the old housing, to allow full airflow from the new duct from the NT-30 (to cut is in brown, visible through opening):



I used the “dummy” round steel disc supplied with the NT-30 to plug one of the four side hot-air ports, then cut and riveted on aluminum over the other three then sealed them up with aluminum duct tape.

Some careful measurements and we cut out four small pieces of steel from the old original door of the NT-32, filed the sharp edges smooth, and fastened them into the skirt we needed to force the hot air into the plenum.

Here’s what it looked like:



Pieces cut from the old housing:



After the pieces were assembled with screws into the skirt.



So, after mounting the new NT-30, cutting and re-fitting the copper gas pipe, connecting the four needed wires to the supplied electrical harness, mounting the new exterior intake exhaust plate, finding the Trempro 635 (aka Vulkem) and caulking between the new exterior intake/ exhaust vent and Henri’s exterior shell, plus a few other fiddly things, we were done!



What luck, as the next week was on and off rain and thunderstorms, 11C at night and not much warmer during the day. I had a good chance to appreciate how nice it is to have plenty of warm air available at the flick of a switch!

Oh, I eventually got around to installing the new thermostat supplied with the NT-30. It’s a somewhat cheap looking affair, but has one important feature (that I really don’t understand) which is called “anticipation”, IIRC.



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Old 06-13-2012, 03:47 PM   #166
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Good job, guy.

"Oh, I eventually got around to installing the new thermostat supplied with the NT-30. It’s a somewhat cheap looking affair, but has one important feature (that I really don’t understand) which is called “anticipation”, IIRC. "

Anticipation is fooling the thermostat into thinking it is warm enough and shutting the furnace down a little in advance, so that the residual heat in the furnace will bring the space up to the right temperature, without overheating the room.

This is normally done on the older and simpler thermostats by putting a little heater inside the thermostat. When the furnace is running, this little heater pre-heats the thermostat in "anticipation" that the room is getting warmer, and shuts the furnace down a little early so it does not overshoot the set point.

I am not sure that is the very best explanation but may help a little.
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Old 06-13-2012, 11:44 PM   #167
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Aage,
This is a great thread and I'm so very glad that "Mike" was willing and able to help with your project! I'm sure that you both learned a few things and had a good time!

Without the help of my friend Ralph, I would be so overwhelmed with the size of the sheet metal/floor replacement trek that I'm on. As it is, he and I are enjoying the journey and getting to know each other in way that we did not previously after working together for many years.

Regards,

Steve
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Old 06-28-2012, 02:15 PM   #168
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A small mystery revealed to be a potential disaster!

Since shortly after the beginning of our November 2009 trip from Ottawa to Florida, we had a not-so-slow leak in the rear curbside tire. I had had enough of constantly checking it, and so we stopped somewhere near Old Town, FL (if I remember correctly), at a small garage and had the tire inspected. I remember the place mainly because Henri almost took the roof over the gas pumps off, due to me not noticing how low it was. The owner came out at a gallop, waving his arms and yelling "STOP!!" at the top of his lungs.

I'm glad he did. I didn't feel like doing any carpentry work for him that day, so thankfully, I didn't touch the little roof.

Nothing definite found in the tire, so off we went again, thinking of the gas station owner's suggestion to get the wheel burnished to make sure there was good contact for the tire. Good thing I had decided to bring my compressor along with me!

Well, here it is three years later, and I have been doing a bunch of small jobs that I've put off for a long while, and finally remembered that I had an old spare I could hopefully use to take off the one leaky tire and have it looked at more closely.

The leak gotten to the point that I lost 15 lbs in one two-week period, so I figured it was time to have a closer look at the wheel and tire. Thankfully, the old rusty wheel with a nylon 700/15 tire was in good enough shape to hold my trailer for the bit of time it would take to take it in to a good garage.

Imagine my surprise when, on rolling the tire while inspecting the tread, I found a 9/16" bolt head in the carcass of the tire!

Since I am not travelling with Henri any time soon, I decided to patch the tire rather than replace it.

All that to say, in future I will take the attitude that leaks needs to be attended to if you are travelling. That bolt could have blown out the tire when we were on the highway, and I don't want to think what that might have meant to our trip!
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Old 06-28-2012, 02:24 PM   #169
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Good job, guy.

"Oh, I eventually got around to installing the new thermostat supplied with the NT-30. It’s a somewhat cheap looking affair, but has one important feature (that I really don’t understand) which is called “anticipation”, IIRC. "

Anticipation is fooling the thermostat into thinking it is warm enough and shutting the furnace down a little in advance, so that the residual heat in the furnace will bring the space up to the right temperature, without overheating the room.

This is normally done on the older and simpler thermostats by putting a little heater inside the thermostat. When the furnace is running, this little heater pre-heats the thermostat in "anticipation" that the room is getting warmer, and shuts the furnace down a little early so it does not overshoot the set point.

I am not sure that is the very best explanation but may help a little.
Thanks, that makes a lot of sense, Idroba.

I can tell you that there has been more than one night where I was very glad to have that new little furnace in place and ready to go.
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Old 06-28-2012, 09:10 PM   #170
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Does Henri have 14" or 15" wheels? Better yet, what tire size is on the trailer?
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Old 06-28-2012, 11:47 PM   #171
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Just the usual, Steve. ST225/R15 load class D
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Old 06-29-2012, 12:34 PM   #172
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Aage,
When you replace your tires, do you think that you will stay with the ST tires or go to LT tires?

I'm currently running ST tires but I need to replace mine due to age. I've had two other travel trailers in the past twenty plus years and I've always run Goodyear Marathon ST tires. However, my son who sells agricultural equipment and often delivers the equipment on his goose neck trailer has just recently experienced two tire failures. He also had about three other tire failures on fairly new trailer tires about five years ago. I'm really starting to think that ST tires, like the old gray mare, ain't what they used to be!
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Old 06-29-2012, 09:18 PM   #173
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Mine are timing out too, Steve. The only real trip I had on them was the 4,000+ miles to the Florida Panhandle, and with a side trip to Georgia to see my brother.

I'm reading here that the GYMs have gotten over their problems, but I won't seriously look into which tires until I am actually ready to buy new ones.

Two more appliances first, hopefully: a new three-burner stove, and maybe a new refer. We'll see. I think I've done enough for this year to Henri, and I was toying with the idea of powder-coating the stove, since it still works so well.

This summer is for enjoying now, 'nuff work done to the Big H!
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Old 07-02-2012, 09:44 AM   #174
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Aage,
Enjoy the summer season! I believe that it will be easier for you to do so in Ottawa than it will for me in Wichita as our daytime highs are running over 100 degrees most days! I'm still working on my trailer a couple of days a week most weeks and I hope to have it mostly back together by this fall.

All my best,

Steve
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Old 08-25-2013, 03:54 PM   #175
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Time for flooring

I haven't done much with Henri this year, with the exception of pulling out the skanky old carpet that was in the sleeping area and bathroom. Henri is a rear bath, mid twins Sovereign, what I think was the most popular version in '74 from the quantities of other TTs of his model I have seen over the years.

We used the popular "TrafficMaster Allure" vinyl planks from Home Depot. You may remember this is a floating vinyl plank, joined only by its two sticky sides to other planks. We have used this in the kitchen of our home for over three years now, and in fact, were able to use a case of planks we had left over from that job. We are still very pleased with the results in our home, and would buy it again for that kind of purpose.

We decided to break the job in two by doing the bathroom (wow, some tough cuts!) and bedroom only for now, and stopping at the threshold to the galley and terminating it with a brass metal threshold that is screwed to the floor, joining up to the existing carpet. Our thinking is that since we want it to be free-floating, we can pick up the trail and finish the rest of the trailer next spring.

We also replaced the toilet, since the old one let go last Fall, and the parts to fix it were almost $70. I decided to go for new, since we were doing the floor.

Here are some photos:



from floor level, no flash



from floor level, with flash



showing sleeping area and into bathroom



I let my wife do the tile trimming, and I must admit she did a wonderful job. I do NOT have the patience to get those fine cuts.
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Old 08-25-2013, 04:07 PM   #176
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Looks very nice Aage!

I sure wish I could get my wife to help on the trailer, you're a lucky man.
Mike
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Old 08-25-2013, 04:19 PM   #177
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Looks very nice Aage!

I sure wish I could get my wife to help on the trailer, you're a lucky man.
Mike
It's all relative, Mike. After all, you have at least three trailers! Now that's what -I- call lucky!
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Old 08-26-2013, 09:00 AM   #178
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Aage,
I think that the color and texture of the flooring look very good in Henri. The flooring also gives everything a nice fresh, crisp appearance. Good job sir!

Steve
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Old 08-26-2013, 10:19 AM   #179
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It's all relative, Mike. After all, you have at least three trailers! Now that's what -I- call lucky!
Thanks Aage!
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Old 08-26-2013, 06:40 PM   #180
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Aage,
I think that the color and texture of the flooring look very good in Henri. The flooring also gives everything a nice fresh, crisp appearance. Good job sir!

Steve
Thanks, Steve.

I was quite surprised at how well that colour (a light cork pattern) went with Henri's dark sleeping area. I have since replace the light-tinted bedcover on the left with another dark brown one (duplicate of the right hand one, from Ikea) and given up on putting really light tones in that area. It's meant to be dark, and that is that, I have decided.

Next adventure is to replace the blue house-type refer with a Dometic RV one. As soon as I sort out how to best use the four fans I have, off we go!
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