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Minno 08-08-2010 07:52 PM

3 Attachment(s)
Hotter than Hades today! I was working in Little Girl this morning installing the outside outlet, and Kay came in and asked, "How difficult would it be to wire the a/c? We know it worked last Spring before we bought her, so it probably still works now, right?" I pondered that for about 2 nanoseconds, and said, not too long. All I need to do is find the thermostat and plenum, and I think those are both in the garage. This was at about 9:00 am this morning, and it was already about 86 degrees and the humidity was about 95%. Heat index said it was 108.

About 45 minutes later, I had the thermostat and plenum installed, and then I fabricated an extension cord out of 12/2 romex, with a plug on one end plugged into a 20 amp circuit in my workshop, and the other end directly wired to the a/c. Kinda jury-rigged, but perfectly safe. Plugged her in, turned on the a/c, and viola, cold air! Made it much nicer to work in her this afternoon. And it kept running, blowing cold air, all afternoon. :)

Got two other projects done. One was adding all the ground/neutral pigtails I needed for all the future 12 volt lights and other devices.

The second one was the installation of the outside outlet box. A few weeks ago, Kay installed the outside cover, and today I added a blue plastic box on it, and fed the 110 VAC wires into it. A good bead of vulkum on both sides of the seam between the metal cover and blue box should keep the weather, road spray, and critters out.

Attachment 108356Attachment 108357Attachment 108358

The blue box is riveted to the metal cover. The 110 volt wires feed into the side, and I'll vulkum around them once I get the outlet installed. But that will wait for a cooler day.

catfalcon 08-09-2010 02:02 AM

Just curious: Where do you buy your Vulkem? I can't find it locally, and we have already gone through the 3 tubes we got from Inland RV, but shipping and handling just about double the cost. I didn't know I'd need so much, but hey, I'm a beginner! We also finally got that huge bathroom fiberglass piece up, but I used foam squares, then attached the silver bubble insulation on top of that and when you walked from the back to the front it was like walking into an entirely different weather zone! Much cooler in the insulated area. Gonna try to finish up the insulation this week. It's nice to have a floor in too! Got more bruises from navigating that frame than I've ever seen in my life!



Minno 08-09-2010 07:24 AM

Hi Cathy,

Fastenal carry's it if there's one close to you. If they have any in stock is another question, as I've found they quite often don't. Otherwise, I haven't any other local store that carry's it. Inland RV, Out of Doors Mart, and Vintage Trailer supply all carry it as well, but then you're paying for shipping. Try a web search for Tremco or TremPro, and maybe you can find a local supplier.


Splitrock 08-09-2010 07:35 AM

Here Home Depot and Lowes both carry Vulkem 116 gray for about 5 bucks a tube.

Minno 08-09-2010 05:17 PM

So, this past weekend, in the lovely weather we're having (90's for both temp and humidity - southerners are probably laughing at us, but it's really HOT and HUMID weather for us Minnesnowtans!) I decided to try to clean out our fresh water tank, to see if it's salvageable. A gallon of bleach, several hours of sweat and sun later, the conclusion is: it is not. Even after sitting with bleach water in it for several hours, it still looks really grungy inside when I peer in through the opening. The color is still green, also, although I suspect that the color has leached into the plastic and is permanent. There's no possible way I can think of to effectively scrub it out unless I cut the top off of it. Seems that might compromise the integrity of the tank a bit! I have access to a pressure washer, but I can't get into all the nooks and crannys with it. Since we drink our water, we decided we just wouldn't be comfortable using this tank as a fresh water tank again. :(
We're now throwing around the possibility of using it as a grey water tank, since we need one. It would require frame modification, and some new fittings, but it would be doable, we think. We're going to let that idea simmer for awhile. We have awhile before we need the tanks at this point, and there are other priorities for us. Oh well. Gave it the good old college try....

Dave Park 08-09-2010 05:24 PM

If you remove the tank and lay it on its four sides, and pour in enough hydrogen peroxide to cover the lowest side, it will remove the discoloration.

Bleach will absolutely have killed everything deader than dead, so it's just the THOUGHT of the discoloration that's putting you off.

Did you run the bleach through all the plumbing, too? Be aware bleach can harm the metal innards of your water heater.

Minno 08-09-2010 07:28 PM

I'm not concerned about the color (it's kind of pretty), but about the plaque/sludgy stuff that's on the inside of the tank when you look inside it. It looks very well adhered to the walls and dividers in the tank. I don't know of any way to loosen it, and I don't want it in there. We don't currently have any plumbing - trailer is gutted, and need a new water heater too, so that's not a concern. The water tank is out of the trailer currently. If we decide to work on it some more, I'll try the peroxide - I hadn't thought of using that as a color remover, but it would certainly work. It might just loosen the gunk too.


Dave Park 08-09-2010 09:45 PM

I was just talking with a friend on this problem you have, and they suggested a box of denture cleaner. I don't have one to try it on, but... It's so crazy, it might just work!

If you do try it, post back and let us know the results.

Minno 08-11-2010 07:54 PM

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Installed the outside outlet in the box yesterday evening.
Attachment 108619

Also repaired the galley area vent pipe with epoxy. It had 8 rivet holes in it, where the factory riveted the inside skin to the pipe in that area instead of the rib right next to it. Just one of those weird things you find sometimes.

Minno 08-15-2010 08:33 PM

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Finally, a break in the weather! Much cooler today. Worked on Little Girl off and on all weekend, in between other household projects we have going on. Did some more wiring stuff inside yesterday to escape the heat. Wired the 10/2 pigtail to the 30 amp connector we installed. Toastie was dead on Ė with the side screws, that thing is hard to wire once itís installed, even without any inner skins in the way.

Today, since it was much cooler, we worked on some outside stuff. Kay drilled and then cut the opening for the new water fill. We installed it at the same level as the city water connector and the electrical connector (which are further back on the trailer), and directly below the TV connector.
Attachment 108842 Attachment 108843Attachment 108844

Now all we need is a water tank to connect it toÖ :blink:

I spent a few hours this afternoon making a template out of plywood so I could re-arch the upper half of the door. Worked pretty well. Following the same basic steps I did to re-arch the lower half of the door (post 76), I was able to bend the upper half of the door to more closely match the curve of the door frame. I forgot to take pics of the work in progress. But hereíre the results.
Attachment 108845Attachment 108846

Much better than it was! It had about a ľĒ gap at the top before Ė one you could see daylight through. Now, it has passed the dollar bill test all around the top, and more importantly, it passed the water test! :bb:

So, now that the door is sealed, and the two seam leaks fixed, Little Girl is leak free! We can finally work on taking the tarp down Ė especially since itís falling apart and looking pretty ragged after 18 months.

Other things we worked on this weekend include replacing all the rusted screws on the porch light with nice new stainless steel screws, and I took the over-the-door light off. One screw is rusted in place on the top of the housing, so Iíll need to drill that out. The light socket is pretty rusted as well, so I think Iíll replace it. I have two small LED sockets and bulbs that I think will work in there ok. Iíll work on that this week and post pics once I figure it out.


Minno 08-25-2010 06:35 PM

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A few things to report progress on. First off, I repaired the light that goes over the door.

Attachment 109367
Took the rusted socket out (the bulb is rusted in place and wonít budge, nor does it work).

Attachment 109366 Attachment 109368Attachment 109369Attachment 109370
Used a scrap bit of aluminum to create a holder for the two led sockets I had. Added a ground wire just to make sure it has a good ground, and soldered 12 VDC leads onto the other legs of the sockets. Tested, and they work just fine.

Installed the rebuilt light over the door. While I had it off, I pulled the new wires through to the outside so I can make the connections inside the light fixture instead of inside the wall. Personal preference more than anything else, but it will make it easier to repair if I ever need to down the road.

Attachment 109371
Hereís a pic of the porch light all cleaned up with new stainless screws. I installed a new gasket under the lens as well, and since the old one was all brittle and half missing, Iím hopeful that the new gasket will keep dirt and small little critters out of the light. :)

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Final project I did over the weekend was to install the new TV antenna. Itís the new Winegard model with the batwing already attached. The template you download to drill the holes for mounting the base was dead on. The small patch on the roof next to the base is where the old antenna cable fed through the roof. One less hole to potentially leak down the road.

I did run into a minor problem. The antenna was too long to fit in between the new front fan vent and the middle vent. It was just about an inch too long. So, I cut 1 ĹĒ off each of the square tubes and drilled new holes to mount the antenna head to the tubes. Worked great, as in it goes up and down perfectly. No idea on reception yet Ė we have a few other to finish before I install a TV. :angel:

Current project is cutting out the plywood floor so we can install the wheel well covers. Working towards our goal of getting the inside skins on this year. I think weíll make it.


jdalrymple 08-25-2010 09:24 PM

Chris and Kay,

Just tripped over this thread, don't know how I have missed it so far.

Great work. You wil certainly have a great AS when your done.

Best Regards,


mbrod666 08-25-2010 09:46 PM

Chris and Kay,

Anoka or Le Suer?


Minno 08-25-2010 09:51 PM

Anoka, Mike, between Blaine and Circle Pines, about 5 miles north of 694 up 35W. We're close!


Minno 08-26-2010 11:47 AM

3 Attachment(s)
We wanted to see what the rebuilt door light looked like at night and how much light it puts out. Itís the amount of light I was hoping for Ė enough to see the steps and door, and unlock the door at night. And hopefully not enough light to attract a bunch of flying bugs. Interesting effect with the two LED bulbs shining down on the lens. :)

Kinda dark pics, but these were taken in the evening and at night.

Attachment 109412 Attachment 109413 Attachment 109414


mbrod666 08-26-2010 07:29 PM

Ham Lake
Chris and Kay,

I keep the Tradewind in Roseville but I live in Ham Lake. Should get together some time and compare notes.


Minno 08-28-2010 05:47 PM

4 Attachment(s)
Busy day, and for once, focused on one project! :) Installed the inner wheel wells and worked on bolting the floor down the rest of the way. We left one sheet of plywood not really fastened down, so we removed that sheet, and slide the wheel wells under the other sheet cut out for the opening. Then added glue to the splines, and replaced the sheet we took out. Went fairly smooth, until the uh-oh... The sheet wouldn't fit back in place! With the wells in place, and the walls all screwed to the rest of the plywood through the c-channels, there was no give to get both of the little tab ends back under the c-channel at the rear of the the wells. After careful consideration, I cut one of the tabs off, and we were able to then get the plywood back in position. It's all bolted in place now, as well as the tab we cut off. The tab is supported by two outriggers, so its solid enough.

Attachment 109531Attachment 109532 Attachment 109533Attachment 109534

We then worked on bolting the rest of the floor down, but ran out of elevator bolts. A quick trip to Ace was not fruitful - they carry some elevator bolts, but not enough. So, it'll be a Fastenal run early next week. I did buy some carriage bolts, and we were able to finish bolting the c-channel down around the front of the trailer. Now, I think we're ready to insulate and install inner skins!


Minno 08-30-2010 04:54 PM

9 Attachment(s)
Sunday we spent most of the day working on insulation and installing the inner skins. Thank goodness we marked all the skins as we took them off! :) Otherwise, it would take forever to match them to where they need to be re-installed.

It was also a hot day yesterday, so we had the trailer closed up and the a/c on. Fortunately, we didnít need spray adhesive to hold the insulation up on the lower parts of the walls. Friction fitting worked just fine.

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Started with the two rear curved pieces, and are basically working opposite how we took them all out.

On the rear pieces, not many of the old rivet holes lined up. There were enough that did on ribs so we know they are installed in the same location, but once you got to the curve and the rear headliner, it was necessary to drill several new rivet holes.

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The side pieces were must easier to install, as 95% or better of the rivet holes lined up on all of them. We did need to drill some new ones, but not really that many.

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On this side of the trailer, the two outlet boxes went back into the original holes, so they were fairly easy to install. I did drill new holes to fish wires through, which will eventually go to light switches or outlets in the future headboard of the bed.

Attachment 109784
We also set the vent pipe in place mostly. On a cooler day, before we install the upper skins, Iíll remove the gorilla tape thatís covering the vent hole, pull the vent pipe up into position, and install the vent cap on the roof.

Overall, pretty good progress we think for one pretty hot day. Itís really nice to be able to do something that really makes a visible change.

Kinda dreading the upper walls though Ė we think those are going to be hard to get back in place just because of how long they are.


mello mike 09-03-2010 07:50 AM

Chris, things are looking good, you're making excellent progress.

I have a question for you. I'm adding a few 12v circuits to my '58 Overlander and I was curious how the factory wired each circuit. My Sovereign has a circuit or wire for each area of the trailer. How is this single wire fed to each light/load in that circuit? Wire nuts? Spliced? Just curious since I never removed the interior skins in my Sovereign. A pic would be great, too.

Minno 09-03-2010 02:39 PM

Hi Mike,

First of all -Thanks! We feel we're making good progress now too. We decided not to go camping this weekend so we could use the long weekend to get more done.

But now youíre asking me to remember how she was wired. Since we were gutting her at the time, I wasnít paying too much attention to how the wiring was done. Especially since I was going to re-do it all. From what I remember, each circuit was a single wire running from the fuse panel at the univolt up to the wiring harness that ran inside the center ceiling panel. From the harness, there were branches that went to the individual fixtures. The branches were tapped into the appropriate wire in the harness, but to be honest, I didnít pay any attention to how they were connected in. I donít remember coming across many wire nuts, but I know I found a few here and there. Other connections may have been crimp-type or simply the wires were striped and twisted together. No idea if solder was used or not.

I can tell you what Iím doing for connections. If two wires are butted together, Iím using a butt crimp connector covered with shrink tubing. Where a wire needs to branch off the main run, Iím using suitcase type connectors Ė the kind that do not require you to strip the wire first. As an added measure of insulation, I wrap all of the suitcase connectors with electrical tape. Just need to have right size crimp or suitcase connector for the wire gauge.

I didnít take any pictures of the old wire harness. But if you look at the pics in posts 7 & 27, you can see parts of the wire harness and branch wires.

That help?


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