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Old 12-28-2016, 07:59 PM   #521
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I've been lurking since you picked her up and discovered the rot. What a great job you are doing! I hope you get to enjoy it some before you have to go to Hawaii. That's a real tough assignment, but somebody has to do it LOL.

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Old 12-29-2016, 01:53 PM   #522
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Thanks David, WD gear definitely takes a beating so we will see how it holds up with the powder coating.

Al and Missy, thanks for following along on this journey. It's been interesting! We have made it out for 20 plus nights this year and hoping to get a few more in the next few months before we park her in the desert. We sure will be ready to get back to enjoying her when we get back from this next tour!
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Old 01-07-2017, 12:44 AM   #523
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Millertime's rear bathroom rot '76 Tradewind thread

Lots to update, but I need to take more photos....

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So I finally got around to putting in some flooring. We went with vinyl plank click flooring from lumber liquidators. It is sort of a weathered gray. The installation was tougher that I thought due to the cuts needed to hide the flooring under the new cabinetry I am also working on. I went with 1/4" spacing for expansion and did bolt my table right on top of the floor. I doubt it will expand all that much given the width and size of the Tradewind..... I trimmed out the hallway and other sections with the plastic quarter round they sell at HD that is white all the way through, no painting or cutting required! I attached it to the floor with 1 inch brad nails I set by hand using a punch to put the brads below the surface. Will I fill the holes???? Someday lol.

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If you look past the fridge you can see the 3 drawers and pull-out laundry bin, the wife is pretty excited about the laundry bin go figure.

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The drawer build went well, I used my table saw to cut the dados for the 1/4 ply bottom. It would be great to have a big saw for crosscuts. My saw is a portable job site table saw with a stand that has wheels. It has a big table which helps but still isn't like having a nice big shop saw and also a big radial arm for the crosscuts. Here in CA our current place doesn't even have a garage, just a garden shed that I keep most of my tools in (and anything the wife doesn't want in the house lol, you know the story) So for anyone reading who is attempting or thinking about renovations, it can be done even without a fancy shop.

Most nights I am out after the kids are asleep with a headlamp working on portable saw horses until my neighbor texts me he is going to sleep. Otherwise I find time on days my wife can take our kids out on a morning trip or errand. It isn't always easy, but the work eventually gets done. I couldn't do it without my wife that is for sure.

For drawer fronts I went with poplar. The local big box store is outrageous when it comes to hardwood. I found a hardwood store and bought it for 2.80 a board foot. At HD they charge nearly 5X that. I ripped it to wodth and then glued up the boards to the size of each cabinet fronts (plus a little for kerf loss, etc).

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Each drawer front I fit to the drawers using double sized tape to hold them in place while I screwed them in from the inside. After that all the fronts came off today where I got out the Palm router (Bosch colt 1 HP) and put a chamfered edge on the fronts. A routing table would have been nice given it was 13 fronts/doors, but beggars can't be choosers. Just make sure to rip the end grain after you do both sides with the grain to avoid tearout. I also recommend a respirator or serious dust mask, wood dust in that volume ( I looked like a wood shaving snowman) is not good for you.

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Next came a LOT of sanding. Luckily for me my Palm random orbit sander worked find for the flare fronts and the cambered sections to break the edge. I only sanded with 120 grit, some internet articles blab on about sanding to 400 grit but who has the time?

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Lastly after a lot of cleanup I put on 2 coats of white alkyl behr paint for cabinets and trim using a smooth foam roller for cabinet painting. Those rollers don't hold much paint so just be patient and don't overload the roller or it won't roll and instead will just stick and smear paint down your work. The last isn't too clear, but they came out looking pretty darn good. Making the drawers and fronts from scratch was a lot more work than expected, but then again with this project everything falls into that category 😂.

More photos to come after I mount the fronts and then some fancy silver and green glass pulls my wife has ordered.

Munch munch munch
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Old 01-08-2017, 05:10 AM   #524
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You're trailer is looking great and your making a lot of progress.
I hear you on working after the kids are asleep, all of my polishing has been done during afternoon naps.

The lack of a real shop doesn't show, I've seen people with amazing shops that don't put out the quality of work you're doing. Keep it up!
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Old 01-08-2017, 08:05 AM   #525
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Vinyl Flooring

MillertimeUS,

Your floor looks great. Keep an eye out on the end joints, I have the exact same flooring in mine and the ends separate during temp changes. I had 1/4 gaps on all of my ends and sides with trim fastened to the woodwork so that it would float. My bad pieces were in the middle of my floor, the rest seemed to do ok. I replaced several pieces thinking it was a bad locking groove and no difference. Let me know how yours does with the temp changes. Trying to figure out a solution.
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Old 01-08-2017, 09:44 AM   #526
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Hi millertime: You did have a lot to update! And you are good at finishing work. Me, not so much. I'm better at packing wheel bearings than making drawer fronts. I wonder how thick you vinyl floor is? I purchased the thin stuff and I'm having trouble keeping the planks connected, both sides and rear. But we may have purchased the cheapest stuff in the store.

What a project over the last couple of years, but you are seeing it to the end. You better insure your trailer for 20k at least.

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Old 01-09-2017, 11:50 PM   #527
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Cabinet fronts are installed! Pulls should be in soon. Thanks to all the support and kind words, I sometimes finish a night of working a few hours and it feels like I am burning the candle at both ends. I ask myself," does ANYONE have any idea how much work one of these are?" And the answer is yes.... my buddies on the forum.


And since we are all friends, here is my 'DOH!" moment as I attached the drawer fronts. The uncropped version.

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That's right I forgot to mark and cut the end off that lower tip-out cabinet. Guess that means the router is coming out again.... and I really thought I was done with those fronts. What can you do but chuckle, sigh, and call it a day?

Munch munch munch
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Old 01-12-2017, 06:23 AM   #528
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Hi millertime: Many of us know how much work these vintage Airstream renovations are. I figure I've got 1200 hours in mine, and it is maybe 1/2 the project of yours. Your trailer is looking great.

We all have had surprising duh moments. Back in Iowa we called these times "dumb butt attacks". Most of us humans get them. I get more than most. At least I'm retired so the impact of such an attack only affects me.

So the router and paint come back out when you get time. Press on regardless. At least the drawer face isn't a half inch too short. That would be my error.

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Old 01-12-2017, 05:53 PM   #529
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What a great job! Wishing I was in that phase. Anyone ever hire a trim carpenter to finish the cabinet work? That's my plan if I live long enough. Lol
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Old 01-12-2017, 09:34 PM   #530
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Millertime's rear bathroom rot '76 Tradewind thread

David and Thomas, thanks for the encouragement. I saw your post Thomas, best of luck on that 34', I am at times wanting a 31' once my kids grow up to teenage size.
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Old 02-07-2017, 07:30 PM   #531
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Millertime's rear bathroom rot '76 Tradewind thread

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Lots to update! Spent the last 2 weekends out in Borrego Springs. The first weekend we dry camped at Palm Canyon SP campground and the second weekend we did our first FREE boondocking thanks to a great suggestion from a forum member.

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Handles for the drawers installed! Still having some issues with drawers opening when pulling, tried some magnetic catches but we still find some open.

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With some modifications to the stock battery compartment (mainly tearing out the plastic molding) I managed to fit 2 x 6 volt golf cart batteries (Costco $80 each) making my new capacity over 200 amp-hours. Worked great for the 2-3 night stays with no generator required. Might last even longer since we are all LED and don't watch TV, use a stereo, etc. I enclosed the batteries in a custom enclosure so it would vent properly.

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Looks a little messy in this photo but it all fits under the lower drawer and I have a tip out drawer in front of the battery. I will have to replace the water fill port since it is blocked somewhat now, but it was cracked anyhow and leaked (old plastic). I plan to replace with a SS marine fill someday. In the meantime I fill my tank via hooking up to city water and opening a valve I added that goes right to the tank.


Oh and to share my latest 'whoops'. As you can see the fill line to the water tank is disconnected. When headed out to the desert for the first time I filled the tank totally full so we wouldn't have to find water. Well the drive up was pretty curvy and bumpy and during a stop we went back and found water on the floor where it had sloshed up and out of the upper fill hose, DOH! I stuffed a rag and elevated the hose and had no more issues. Luckily things dry quickly in the desert
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Old 02-08-2017, 08:15 AM   #532
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Miller really like your no upper cabinets clean and open look in the kitchen. Lots of counter space.

Saved your photos for our future reference.
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Old 02-08-2017, 08:25 AM   #533
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Your Tradewind looks great. I was curious if your flooring is holding up. I still have two places that won't lock. I love your interior setup.
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Old 02-10-2017, 05:45 PM   #534
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Thanks all! Floor is doing well, I think I have one area that unlocked that I need to address, but since the floor is light and the interlock tabs are gray it isn't easy to see
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Old 02-10-2017, 06:07 PM   #535
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Your trailer is incredible. I don't know how you are going to leave it for a year or so.

Al
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Old 02-21-2017, 09:12 PM   #536
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Millertime's rear bathroom rot '76 Tradewind thread

Al and missy, thanks so much! I am already starting to get a little bummed knowing she will sit out in the desert for 2 years. I have started thinking about how to best prepare it for storage.... looking for input from anyone and everyone.

1). Fully winterize (blowout plus antifreeze)

2) reflectix in windows

3) disconnect batteries and hookup small 5-10 W solar tender.

4). Still not sure what to do about the tires, I read to put something under them (wood) so they aren't touching the ground. I thought about jacking up the trailer on stands but I worry about a big windstorm upsetting the stands or something. I will be eyes off for the whole time.

4). Also concerned about vermin, thought about those self sealing mousetraps, throwing in a fogger before I leave.... thoughts?


Oh and an UPDATE!

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Had the same guy who made my metal wheel wells knock up a new fridge chimney using the cracked old one as a template. This one is much wider since my new fridge is quite a bit bigger. One day I will polish it (lol I say that phrase a lot)

Munch Munch Munch
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Old 02-24-2017, 09:21 AM   #537
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Hi millertime: Your long term storage plan looks sound. Keeping critters out is helped by plugging any 3/8 diameter holes there might be in the trailer. I had mice enter from the rear bumper storage, propane line penetrations in the belly, gaps in the wheel wells, A frame square ends at the tongue jack, folding step slide "slots" in the step box, and I still get a mouse in there now and then.

I might submit if the trailer is subject to very high straight winds enough to blow it off jack stands, it would blow it over if it were on the tires. I place the jack stands just aft of the rear axle on the axle mounting plate. There is a whole lot of trailer weight on a very small piece of metal making the loads high. It seems very stable to me. And it is a good theft deterrent. Just a thought.

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Old 03-01-2017, 09:20 AM   #538
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I agree David, most likely will put it up on stands and cover the tires to prevent UV damage.

The trailer still needs some sealing work just for water around the rear lights, etc and I too no doubt have some penetrations to fill in with foam.

I have been thinking about how to connect the solar charger while ensuring weather integrity. My best solution so far is to run the cable through the vent for the stove, which would leave a small gap which rain or critters may enter. The only way to avoid having some entryway open is to install a set of leads that come out the bottom of the trailer which means drilling through the floor and bellypan, installing grommets, etc. How would you do it? I did run solar wiring from near the fridge vent to the battery, could clip the solar tender to that, but it would be a decently long run and I am unsure of the voltage drop losses. Also would have to unscrew the fridge chimney I just installed to access the wires lol, figures.
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Old 03-01-2017, 10:19 AM   #539
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Have you thought about removing the batteries entirely for a storage period that long? By the time you get back, they may be at or near the end of their useful life anyway
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Old 03-01-2017, 10:34 AM   #540
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Perhaps, but given my situation that I will be unable to store them elsewhere and they are brand-new after the storage period They will only be three years old. You are correct though that it might just less hassle to remove them and purchase new batteries on the way to pick up the trailer upon our return.

The other option is to just disconnect them, ensure the fluid levels are full, and let them sit for two years. They will undoubtably be fully discharged but perhaps they will still perform well after recharging.
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