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Author Topic: Ripping Her Apart!  (Read 3221 times)

Wa_mermayd

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    • Randall Gypsy Caravan
Ripping Her Apart!
« on: July 14, 2017, 06:36:56 PM »
Hi All - we used to be on here all the time but took a four year hiatus from fulltime RV living. Now that we are going fulltime again, we are starting with a full remodel. The walls and ceiling are coming off. Everything out! Our goals are to extend the living space by 3', raise the ceiling about 5" and more.

I am specifically looking for any news you have putting in tile - I did find one article so am excited about that someone has done it before. I am going to be tiling the shower.

Also - if you know of someone that has extended their rig - please post a link! Our Winnie is one of the rare diesel 28' rigs. We want to extend to 31'. We know Winnebago made 31' Minnie Winnie's on our frame and know how we want to do it - just wondering what you have done.

Here is the latest pic of our breakdown! I am looking forward to your comments.
Thanks!
31' 2017 Custom Build on Ford E-350 chassis
Silvio Cruz Bike
2 dogs, a 7 year old and some crazy parents  :-)
http://randallgypsycaravan.wordpress.com/

Kevin Means

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Re: Ripping Her Apart!
« Reply #1 on: July 15, 2017, 12:37:54 PM »
Wow! Extending the length of a motorhome... You're my new hero!

Kev
2011 Winnebago Tour 42QD
Towing a Jeep Rubicon Unlimited LJ or an Acura MDX
RVI Brake 2, Minder TM-66 TPMS, 970 watts of solar
(Can't wait to spend more time RVing)
Lakeside, California

Stephen S.

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Re: Ripping Her Apart!
« Reply #2 on: July 15, 2017, 12:57:57 PM »
For the extension... look up the wheel base of those models. The cab (engine, trans, etc.) might have been the same. But did they have the rear wheels moved to keep the whole thing balanced?

From a mechanics perspective on extending the frame, don't just weld 3' of beams to what is there. For structural safety, remove the frame extensions they welded on and replace with C or I beams 3' longer. Use 1/4" minimum plates to sandwich the joint. Do NOT skimp on the welding job!! This is the foundation of your house! If the beams bend or welds crack you lose everything!
Stephen S.
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'99 Winnebago Chalet
2002 VW Beetle
2007 Yamaha TW200
Home town: Mableton, GA

Wa_mermayd

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    • Randall Gypsy Caravan
Re: Ripping Her Apart!
« Reply #3 on: July 15, 2017, 03:18:31 PM »
For the extension... look up the wheel base of those models. The cab (engine, trans, etc.) might have been the same. But did they have the rear wheels moved to keep the whole thing balanced?

From a mechanics perspective on extending the frame, don't just weld 3' of beams to what is there. For structural safety, remove the frame extensions they welded on and replace with C or I beams 3' longer. Use 1/4" minimum plates to sandwich the joint. Do NOT skimp on the welding job!! This is the foundation of your house! If the beams bend or welds crack you lose everything!

Yay! This is why I love RVForum! Thank you for your comment.

OK. Husband and I have been reviewing your comment - here is what he says. "There is an added a tow package to the frame that is super beefy. The tow tongue weight capacity is 500lbs. Included in that installation that must have been done by Ford when building out the steel frame, is a frame extension that concludes with two C beams back-to-back that are close to 8' long. We are removing the hitch receptors and will simply build the extra 3' onto that extension. We have a foot of the 3' that has a strong steel frame member under it so we will only be going out the extra 2'."  Of course we will loose the ability to tow but - we've never used that function of our rig so aren't worried about it.  Daniel is saying we will weld some angle irons to support the additional 2'.

Daniel has a question - by taking advantage of the tow capacity and using that as our extension (which isn't going to weight anything close to 500lbs) should we need to be doing anything else to support the extension? We are loosing the hitch bar which must weight at least 50lbs+ which should work in our favor as well.

Separate question - aren't those reinforced C beams there to conduct the strength all the way to the back where the hitch is? So if we loose the hitch and use that structure instead for our small extension, shouldn't we be ok?
« Last Edit: July 15, 2017, 03:33:43 PM by Wa_mermayd »
31' 2017 Custom Build on Ford E-350 chassis
Silvio Cruz Bike
2 dogs, a 7 year old and some crazy parents  :-)
http://randallgypsycaravan.wordpress.com/

Stephen S.

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Re: Ripping Her Apart!
« Reply #4 on: July 15, 2017, 07:48:56 PM »
Any competent lawyer would have me throw this in here: I am not giving certified mechanical advice. What I'm saying is worth every penny you are paying for it.($0.00)  ;)

From my three decades of shade-tree mechanicking. <-(new word there) As long as you don't put any of the tanks, bathroom fixtures, gun safe, or any other heavy junk in the very back, (new 3 feet) it should work just fine. I'm hearing that you basically want 3 more feet of room for the bed area?? Did I get that right?

The structure of the floor will determine the stiffness of the back end. Edge beams and floor joists will carry a lot of the wall load. How you connect the walls to the floor will determine if the walls help with the floor being stiffened or leave it springy.

Watching videos of factory builds, you see that they make a flatbed on the chassis, then put walls up on top of that. If you integrate the walls and floor a bit better so that it is a true box, instead of walls stapled to a floor, you can get better strength and less flex.
Stephen S.
===============
'99 Winnebago Chalet
2002 VW Beetle
2007 Yamaha TW200
Home town: Mableton, GA

Wa_mermayd

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    • Randall Gypsy Caravan
Re: Ripping Her Apart!
« Reply #5 on: July 15, 2017, 09:40:52 PM »
Any competent lawyer would have me throw this in here: I am not giving certified mechanical advice. What I'm saying is worth every penny you are paying for it.($0.00)  ;)


 LOL!  Understood!  :-)

From my three decades of shade-tree mechanicking. <-(new word there) As long as you don't put any of the tanks, bathroom fixtures, gun safe, or any other heavy junk in the very back, (new 3 feet) it should work just fine. I'm hearing that you basically want 3 more feet of room for the bed area?? Did I get that right?

The extra 3' of space will be my husband office space. No tanks will be back there. There will be a floor to ceiling cabinet on half the original floor and half on the new 3' for our linens and misc.

We are going to have to replace the sub-subfloor and most likely the aluminum sheet they put beneath it as we are finding a lot of aluminum dust. We will definitely be connecting walls to the floor.

Thank you again!  :-)
31' 2017 Custom Build on Ford E-350 chassis
Silvio Cruz Bike
2 dogs, a 7 year old and some crazy parents  :-)
http://randallgypsycaravan.wordpress.com/

Wa_mermayd

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    • Randall Gypsy Caravan
Re: Ripping Her Apart!
« Reply #6 on: July 16, 2017, 02:11:30 PM »
We are having some fun with the RV as we continue the deconstruction process. LOL. We opened up the cabover and WOW did we find rot. Old dry crumbling rot. Turns out the seam from the side of the cabover to the front was leaking and of course the front window where most cabovers leak.  The place where we thought the leak was also rotted out. It's a miracle we didn't fall through. Thank heavens Daniel reinforced the cabover from the interior!

Pictures of the rot are on our blog at https://randallgypsycaravan.wordpress.com/2017/07/16/rot-one-word-you-never-want-to-hear/
31' 2017 Custom Build on Ford E-350 chassis
Silvio Cruz Bike
2 dogs, a 7 year old and some crazy parents  :-)
http://randallgypsycaravan.wordpress.com/

Kevin Means

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Re: Ripping Her Apart!
« Reply #7 on: July 16, 2017, 03:57:41 PM »
You know, it's probably not too late to re-think this project. :D

Kev
2011 Winnebago Tour 42QD
Towing a Jeep Rubicon Unlimited LJ or an Acura MDX
RVI Brake 2, Minder TM-66 TPMS, 970 watts of solar
(Can't wait to spend more time RVing)
Lakeside, California

Wa_mermayd

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    • Randall Gypsy Caravan
Re: Ripping Her Apart!
« Reply #8 on: July 16, 2017, 04:27:22 PM »
You know, it's probably not too late to re-think this project. :D

Kev

LOL - you're funny.   :P
31' 2017 Custom Build on Ford E-350 chassis
Silvio Cruz Bike
2 dogs, a 7 year old and some crazy parents  :-)
http://randallgypsycaravan.wordpress.com/

Wa_mermayd

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    • Randall Gypsy Caravan
Re: Ripping Her Apart!
« Reply #9 on: July 17, 2017, 02:43:44 PM »
You know, it's probably not too late to re-think this project. :D

Kev

Hey Kev, your comment has been plaguing me - LOL! Unfortunately, this is our home. We have a temporary place we are staying while we are doing this work but this is all we have. Winnie has to be rebuilt. We can't afford a new rig and since we are doing all the construction ourselves, we can keep the costs down to materials which is the only way we can afford this. Winnie has been well loved her whole life and has seen some rough travel - much of it before we got her. Now we have to make sure she will safely withstand the next 10 years at least. So, we are ripping her apart, treating all the metal with rust guard, fixing what we find, replacing what we must and making our home. This work has to be done. The cabover was so wet I am shocked it never started to sag. The bottom compartments were breaking and threatening to fall off the rig. The roof was so damaged by it's 20+ years, it was absolutely necessary to fix in its entirety. Now we have the opportunity to make it better and stronger.

LOL - we have to do this stuff - its the only home we have. :-)
31' 2017 Custom Build on Ford E-350 chassis
Silvio Cruz Bike
2 dogs, a 7 year old and some crazy parents  :-)
http://randallgypsycaravan.wordpress.com/

Wa_mermayd

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    • Randall Gypsy Caravan
Re: Ripping Her Apart!
« Reply #10 on: July 17, 2017, 03:16:30 PM »
Hey All - I updated our blog with current pics. I have to resize them to post here which is a pain so if for some reason you can't see them on the blog, let me know and I will edit one or two to post here.

Thoughts? Suggestions?

Today we will be talking to another RV repair shop about our ideas and will show them the existing 'C' bracket extension that is on the RV and see what they say about that 3'. Keep your fingers crossed. Also need to find a welder and the metal for the repairs/reinforcement of the frame. Really hoping we don't need to replace the sheet aluminum at the very base of everything.

Thanks!

https://randallgypsycaravan.wordpress.com/2017/07/17/deconstruction-almost-complete/
31' 2017 Custom Build on Ford E-350 chassis
Silvio Cruz Bike
2 dogs, a 7 year old and some crazy parents  :-)
http://randallgypsycaravan.wordpress.com/

pnkdmnd

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Re: Ripping Her Apart!
« Reply #11 on: July 17, 2017, 03:18:08 PM »
Wow you have way more guts than I would ever have. And you have "bearly" little help..hahaha.

Modeladay

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Re: Ripping Her Apart!
« Reply #12 on: July 17, 2017, 04:48:55 PM »
Hey All - I updated our blog with current pics. I have to resize them to post here which is a pain so if for some reason you can't see them on the blog, let me know and I will edit one or two to post here.

Thoughts? Suggestions?

Today we will be talking to another RV repair shop about our ideas and will show them the existing 'C' bracket extension that is on the RV and see what they say about that 3'. Keep your fingers crossed. Also need to find a welder and the metal for the repairs/reinforcement of the frame. Really hoping we don't need to replace the sheet aluminum at the very base of everything.

Thanks!
 Hello, download photo shrink from the app store. It is really easy and it shrinks photos to the perfect size for posting here, just a couple of steps😁


https://randallgypsycaravan.wordpress.com/2017/07/17/deconstruction-almost-complete/

tombillbob

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Re: Ripping Her Apart!
« Reply #13 on: July 17, 2017, 07:41:53 PM »
Wa_mermayd,

Here are some pics your requested.
Click on the picture.
Love your pet bears. Where are you located that you have bears helping with your project?
Tom,
« Last Edit: July 17, 2017, 07:49:12 PM by tombillbob »

Wa_mermayd

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    • Randall Gypsy Caravan
Re: Ripping Her Apart!
« Reply #14 on: July 17, 2017, 08:49:38 PM »
Wa_mermayd,

Here are some pics your requested.
Click on the picture.
Love your pet bears. Where are you located that you have bears helping with your project?
Tom,

Thank you so much for the pics! I love the framing. We are somewhat shocked at the lack of framing our rig has. We will be changing that. We are doing the work just outside of Spokane, WA where my friends are. Thus far we have not seen any bears in person but my husband has a lot of fun with photoshopping tools.  LOL!  :-)
31' 2017 Custom Build on Ford E-350 chassis
Silvio Cruz Bike
2 dogs, a 7 year old and some crazy parents  :-)
http://randallgypsycaravan.wordpress.com/

tombillbob

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Re: Ripping Her Apart!
« Reply #15 on: July 18, 2017, 06:26:08 AM »
My trailer '' with aluminum framing'' was the same.  I had read the sales info on my unit and it lead you to believe there were actually framing in the walls. My trailer had 2 studs one on each side of the door. The only aluminum was around the perimeter profile just like your RV. Great job with photo shopping in the bears. My wife and I both thought it was real and she teaches Adobe Photoshop! Please keep us all informed on your interesting project.

Tom,

boatbuilder

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Re: Ripping Her Apart!
« Reply #16 on: July 18, 2017, 08:06:18 AM »
You need to look at the tongue weight rating to see what weight you can actually carry.  The 5000 Lb. towing capacity is the weight of the trailer which a lot of is carried on the trailer tires.  I am guessing the tongue weight rating is only about 500 or 600 lbs.
Charlie

Wa_mermayd

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    • Randall Gypsy Caravan
Re: Ripping Her Apart!
« Reply #17 on: July 18, 2017, 12:42:46 PM »
You need to look at the tongue weight rating to see what weight you can actually carry.  The 5000 Lb. towing capacity is the weight of the trailer which a lot of is carried on the trailer tires.  I am guessing the tongue weight rating is only about 500 or 600 lbs.

Hi Charlie - yes, the tongue weight is only 500lbs. We removed the tow bar since we won't be using that. In this 3' will be my husbands office space. His desk will be integrated into the body in the corner behind the shower. He has his computer and monitors setup as a single unit that he can pick-up and move if necessary - they only weight about 40lbs all together. His office chair - standard rolly thing and him. The weight of the construction will be minimal, especially since we are not just tacking this on the end of the rig. The floor, walls and ceiling are all being built as part of the overall construction. Now that we have more ripped out, we discovered at least a good foot of the 3' we are adding has direct support from the chassis. Only thing 'floating' will be the 2'. We have been visiting RV repair/custom shop after shop to make sure we aren't insane but right now, it looks like we should be fine. No tanks will be back there, nothing heavy re: furniture or belongings - just space.

Thank you! Keep the recommendations, observations and comments coming!
Paula :-)
31' 2017 Custom Build on Ford E-350 chassis
Silvio Cruz Bike
2 dogs, a 7 year old and some crazy parents  :-)
http://randallgypsycaravan.wordpress.com/

Kevin Means

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Re: Ripping Her Apart!
« Reply #18 on: July 18, 2017, 12:48:25 PM »
Believe me Wa_mermayd, I have nothing but admiration for those who can take on a project of this magnitude and end up with a better RV. I will definitely be following along.

Kev
2011 Winnebago Tour 42QD
Towing a Jeep Rubicon Unlimited LJ or an Acura MDX
RVI Brake 2, Minder TM-66 TPMS, 970 watts of solar
(Can't wait to spend more time RVing)
Lakeside, California

BRex

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Re: Ripping Her Apart!
« Reply #19 on: July 18, 2017, 03:07:19 PM »


I agree with Kevin's suggestion of rethinking this. From the pics you posted and the information provided, it would be best to take the entire house off and junk everything but cabinets and reusable hardware. To do anything less would be putting cash into something that has a negative value. If the walls were rebuilt and a new roof put on, (all new stuff except the aluminum framing) you might have something to show for all of your hard work and $$.

JMO and good luck
'97 Country Coach Intrigue

Wa_mermayd

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    • Randall Gypsy Caravan
Re: Ripping Her Apart!
« Reply #20 on: July 18, 2017, 05:53:14 PM »

I agree with Kevin's suggestion of rethinking this. From the pics you posted and the information provided, it would be best to take the entire house off and junk everything but cabinets and reusable hardware. To do anything less would be putting cash into something that has a negative value. If the walls were rebuilt and a new roof put on, (all new stuff except the aluminum framing) you might have something to show for all of your hard work and $$.

JMO and good luck

??? Have you been looking at the blog? That is exactly what we are doing. All the walls are completely off and the roof about 1/4 of the way off thus far. We hope to finish getting it to the just the frame in the next day or so. We ripped out the ugly 20+ year old cabinets a while ago and will be custom building our new ones. Nothing hanging though - we are keeping the head space clean and clear. :-)

YAY! Always nice to see fellow RVers supporting our ideas and work.
31' 2017 Custom Build on Ford E-350 chassis
Silvio Cruz Bike
2 dogs, a 7 year old and some crazy parents  :-)
http://randallgypsycaravan.wordpress.com/

Wa_mermayd

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    • Randall Gypsy Caravan
Re: Ripping Her Apart!
« Reply #21 on: July 25, 2017, 01:20:34 AM »
Hi All -

Progress! We got the roof off but needed to purchase a saber saw to get it off. Now we are sanding the aluminum frame. We were surprised at how little there was to our frame. We expected something a bit more.
31' 2017 Custom Build on Ford E-350 chassis
Silvio Cruz Bike
2 dogs, a 7 year old and some crazy parents  :-)
http://randallgypsycaravan.wordpress.com/

Sun2Retire

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Re: Ripping Her Apart!
« Reply #22 on: July 25, 2017, 04:33:42 AM »
What a project- you guys are gutsy!


My first thought, aside from structural which you are addressing, is length of overhang with regard to dragging. My previous rig was a Bounder 40Z that had a long, factory frame extension; if I remember correctly it had about 13' of overhang behind the tag. It had V shaped skids that contacted the ground more than once exiting driveways. When you're doing your welding maybe something to consider adding so you don't drag more important bits. What's your finished overhang going to be?
Scott
2005 Newmar Dutch Star 3810, Spartan, Cat C7 350 "OURVEE"
Eezrv TPMS, VMSpc, 800W Solar
2002 Dodge RAM 1500 Quad Cab "RTOAD"
Stowmaster towbar & Brakemaster

blw2

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Re: Ripping Her Apart!
« Reply #23 on: July 25, 2017, 11:02:32 AM »
I was looking at that overhang too.  What's the wheelbase?

my "31ft" class c...actual length approx 32ft
has a wheelbase of 223 inches I believe
Thor extended the frame between the axles on the stock chassis (actually a company called Morryde contracted that work out).  From Ford the E-450 came came at either 158 inches or 176 inches.
AND they also added an extension frame behind the axle, I guess sortof like you are thinking....

I'll say this....mine is heavy.  Truthfully the rear axle is on the verge...and is easily overloaded.  Just a comment to take for what it's worth....but be careful about that weight.  Might not seem like you're adding much weight, but cabinetry, walls, flooring, etc.... add up big time, especially when multiplied by that long lever arm... even a couple hundred pounds hanging out many feet back there can be much more seen at the axle.
Brad (DW + 3 kids)
13 Thor Chateau 31L Class C on Ford E-450
'06 Silverado
'05 Rockwood Freedom 1910 (5-1/2 years)
former tent campers

Wa_mermayd

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    • Randall Gypsy Caravan
Re: Ripping Her Apart!
« Reply #24 on: July 25, 2017, 04:13:03 PM »
Overhang - good question. Daniel (hubby) is getting online to respond as well. The quick non-specific answer is we had a heck of a tail drag with the tow hitch back there. We were constantly scraping on almost any angled driveway. Because of that we are super sensitive to speed bumps, driveways, and ramps. That is coming off so the distance from ground to floor will be higher - but longer.
31' 2017 Custom Build on Ford E-350 chassis
Silvio Cruz Bike
2 dogs, a 7 year old and some crazy parents  :-)
http://randallgypsycaravan.wordpress.com/

blw2

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Re: Ripping Her Apart!
« Reply #25 on: July 26, 2017, 09:00:21 AM »
wow, talk about a total gut.....
and doing it out in the weather too.

What an awesome chance to make some changes!
Brad (DW + 3 kids)
13 Thor Chateau 31L Class C on Ford E-450
'06 Silverado
'05 Rockwood Freedom 1910 (5-1/2 years)
former tent campers

Wa_mermayd

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  • Posts: 106
    • Randall Gypsy Caravan
Re: Ripping Her Apart!
« Reply #26 on: July 26, 2017, 11:20:47 PM »
wow, talk about a total gut.....
and doing it out in the weather too.

What an awesome chance to make some changes!

Thank you - we are excited. Hopefully we will be able to start construction next week.  :-)
31' 2017 Custom Build on Ford E-350 chassis
Silvio Cruz Bike
2 dogs, a 7 year old and some crazy parents  :-)
http://randallgypsycaravan.wordpress.com/

Wa_mermayd

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  • Posts: 106
    • Randall Gypsy Caravan
Re: Ripping Her Apart!
« Reply #27 on: July 30, 2017, 10:10:30 PM »
Deconstruction is finally complete. We ripped off the floor yesterday. Everything from this point forward will make her stronger, cleaner, and better! We can't wait to get on the road again in our custom 2017 RV. :-)

First step - rust-be-gone!
Second - Welding

Then we will be moving forward with construction. Woo- Hoo!
31' 2017 Custom Build on Ford E-350 chassis
Silvio Cruz Bike
2 dogs, a 7 year old and some crazy parents  :-)
http://randallgypsycaravan.wordpress.com/

Wa_mermayd

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    • Randall Gypsy Caravan
Re: Ripping Her Apart!
« Reply #28 on: August 10, 2017, 06:29:56 PM »
YAY!  Current status. OK.

After calling several welders and body shops, Daniel found a shop. The owner agreed to come out to where we are doing  the work, check our project and give us his thoughts. He came out today with a tech and we went through her frame. We took some time to talk about what they saw, what we noticed living in her, and what we wanted. They think the extension that was originally put onto the chassis was too long without the addition of another axle. This would be the original factory built model. They saw some welds that had popped that we didn't notice that indicated this. So - we are adding another axle per their recommendation. It won't host another dually set of wheels, just a single tire on each side but it will support to the frame much better, we will get our additional 3' and we will get to keep our tow.

They are going to raise the aluminum frame for us by 8". This will give us the additional head space we want on the inside and give Daniel the room to create the recessed lighting he wants, space for wire channels and better ceiling insulation. Our final height without the A/C covers will be 10'11". With the standard A/C covers that are 8" high, we will still be under 12'.

We are getting rid of the swoop on front in the cab-over and doing 90 degree angles. We are also getting rid of the curve on the back. This will ensure we have more space in the cab-over and will actually be able to sit-up in bed! GASP!

They are adding reinforcement to the aluminum framing and will be framing in the gypsy drop-down bunk bed we are adding for our son.

We have been looking at the wall mount convection ovens out there that I wanted to put in. WOW are they DEEP! Building the support for something like that into the wall will be a nightmare so conventional RV stove top with oven - here we come!

Winnie goes into the shop on Monday. I promise to take tons of pictures. Can't wait to actually start construction!!! SWEET!

Everyone breath a sigh of relief. We aren't going to break our RV in half.  :-)
31' 2017 Custom Build on Ford E-350 chassis
Silvio Cruz Bike
2 dogs, a 7 year old and some crazy parents  :-)
http://randallgypsycaravan.wordpress.com/

Sun2Retire

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Re: Ripping Her Apart!
« Reply #29 on: August 10, 2017, 08:05:10 PM »
Think about brakes on that tag. You going to spring it with air bags?


Re the microwave if you put a standard micro/convection in they mostly hang from the cabinet above, no fancy support required. Put one in, and the standard RV range, and you'll have two ovens! That's the setup I have and it's cool. Or, you can use the convection when you have electricity available and save your propane. Don't dismiss it yet.
Scott
2005 Newmar Dutch Star 3810, Spartan, Cat C7 350 "OURVEE"
Eezrv TPMS, VMSpc, 800W Solar
2002 Dodge RAM 1500 Quad Cab "RTOAD"
Stowmaster towbar & Brakemaster

blw2

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Re: Ripping Her Apart!
« Reply #30 on: August 11, 2017, 10:19:19 AM »
wow, tag axle class C on an E chassis.  Now that is something else!
Looking forward to seeing the progress!
Brad (DW + 3 kids)
13 Thor Chateau 31L Class C on Ford E-450
'06 Silverado
'05 Rockwood Freedom 1910 (5-1/2 years)
former tent campers

Wa_mermayd

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    • Randall Gypsy Caravan
Re: Ripping Her Apart!
« Reply #31 on: August 16, 2017, 09:26:42 PM »
Think about brakes on that tag. You going to spring it with air bags?

We talked brakes and air bags over with the shop and don't really see a need for either. So - until further notice we aren't going to add brakes to the new axle. 

Re the microwave if you put a standard micro/convection in they mostly hang from the cabinet above, no fancy support required. Put one in, and the standard RV range, and you'll have two ovens! That's the setup I have and it's cool. Or, you can use the convection when you have electricity available and save your propane. Don't dismiss it yet.

We will see what we end up with. Your suggestion sounds neat. We don't have any gas running into the rig. We are an all electric beast. Only thing the propane is good for at this point is to run the generator. Once we finish our build-out we won't use that very often. It's for a 30amp system and we are converting to a 50 amp system.

Thanks for the thoughts! Keep 'em coming.  :-)
31' 2017 Custom Build on Ford E-350 chassis
Silvio Cruz Bike
2 dogs, a 7 year old and some crazy parents  :-)
http://randallgypsycaravan.wordpress.com/

blw2

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Re: Ripping Her Apart!
« Reply #32 on: August 17, 2017, 08:52:19 AM »
If your only LP device is the genny
I think if I were you I would look very hard at swapping that genny for a gasoline model
That way you could get rid of the LP tank and use that space for more batteries &/or storage

OR
if budget allows, just drop the generator all together like James over at fitrv.com did.
Brad (DW + 3 kids)
13 Thor Chateau 31L Class C on Ford E-450
'06 Silverado
'05 Rockwood Freedom 1910 (5-1/2 years)
former tent campers

Sun2Retire

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Re: Ripping Her Apart!
« Reply #33 on: August 17, 2017, 10:18:10 AM »
If your only LP device is the genny
I think if I were you I would look very hard at swapping that genny for a gasoline model
That way you could get rid of the LP tank and use that space for more batteries &/or storage

OR
if budget allows, just drop the generator all together like James over at fitrv.com did.

X2 except (this is just me) can't imagine not having the genset. No matter how much solar you have there's going to be a time you need to recharge, especially if you're running all electric. Having a gasoline powered genset gives you much more run time and you don't have to fiddle with finding propane, especially if you only need it for the genset.
Scott
2005 Newmar Dutch Star 3810, Spartan, Cat C7 350 "OURVEE"
Eezrv TPMS, VMSpc, 800W Solar
2002 Dodge RAM 1500 Quad Cab "RTOAD"
Stowmaster towbar & Brakemaster

blw2

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Re: Ripping Her Apart!
« Reply #34 on: August 17, 2017, 12:47:00 PM »
X2 except (this is just me) can't imagine not having the genset. No matter how much solar you have there's going to be a time you need to recharge, especially if you're running all electric. Having a gasoline powered genset gives you much more run time and you don't have to fiddle with finding propane, especially if you only need it for the genset.

Yes, i would think the same way....but what he did was install a very large 2nd alternator on his chassis engine that will recharge his big Li battery.  I forget the number, but he has it engineered and sized to be able to run the roof AC for 90 minutes or some such thing, from the battery...which was their need.

After seeing that and thinking it through, I think that for us anyway it would be very doable.  We are not likely to go park the RV for multiple days and nights without running up the road to (go to town/hit a museum / sight see/ etc...).  The most we do is one night boon docking while enroute either to a destination or to another location to boondock.  There have been a couple of exceptions on our trip out west this summer, but we still ran the chassis engine enough during the days to get a pretty good recharge.  I'll bet with the right set-up we could maybe do even without solar augmenting it.
Brad (DW + 3 kids)
13 Thor Chateau 31L Class C on Ford E-450
'06 Silverado
'05 Rockwood Freedom 1910 (5-1/2 years)
former tent campers

Wa_mermayd

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    • Randall Gypsy Caravan
Re: Ripping Her Apart!
« Reply #35 on: August 22, 2017, 02:27:30 PM »
Hi All -

Sorry for the silence. Thank you for the generator suggestions. I have passed them along to Daniel who swears he is going to get online at some point and respond directly. It's not something to nag over - he either will or won't and in the meantime I share your ideas, thoughts and experience.

They got a late start on Winnie so nothing had been done last week. They found a lot more broken welds. I think Winnie's history has been a bit more traumatic than we knew. I am so very thankful that we ripped off that floor and exposed the chassis. Chances are very high that if we hadn't and built - even if we didn't add the 3', that we would have had serious problems. One of the broken welds they found explains why we were getting a bump in the floor by the back axle. A steel frame member was only attached on one side. The others had popped. LOTS of movement happening underneath.

So we will get it back better than new and WAY more solid than she was before. We won't be able to finish construction where we are now. We are running out of time and this welding bill is a bit more than we had budgeted. Looks like we will roll out with the shell again. We will ensure all exterior construction is complete and then do the internal stuff as we can. She should drive a whole lot smoother that's for sure.

Someone please remind me we need to replace the shocks.

That's all for today folks. More has been going on in the personal front as well. It's on my blog if you want to see otherwise I am pooped but wanted to post an update.  Thanks again!

Paula
31' 2017 Custom Build on Ford E-350 chassis
Silvio Cruz Bike
2 dogs, a 7 year old and some crazy parents  :-)
http://randallgypsycaravan.wordpress.com/

Wa_mermayd

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    • Randall Gypsy Caravan
Re: Ripping Her Apart!
« Reply #36 on: September 13, 2017, 02:16:32 PM »
Hi All -

We have been in limbo for a while. Winnie is still at the welders. First they were waiting for a part (the axle), then the wildfires that are burning across the Pacific Northwest has turned our air quality to soup. Our air was officially worse than Shang Hai for a while. Since the welders shop is open to the outdoors, they couldn't work so the shop shut down for a few days when it was really bad - which I totally get. We were trapped inside as well! Then apparently they all got sick so - no work being done. But we got news today that they should be working on Winnie soon and we will have to go with that.

Meanwhile we called a truck trailer repair shop and got some nice aluminum for the fire shield that goes first on the chassis. We also ordered our skin today from 'RestoreRV.com. We got a great discount since we were buying 70' and it was free shipping! Can't beat that. Even cooler, they said it would be here by Monday or Tuesday which we didn't expect. While we wait for Winnie, we will have the  floor and the skin tucked away, waiting to be used. We are going to get the rubber roof stuff instead of putting aluminum back up there. A local shop seems to have the best deal. 35' with all the goop to install it for $770.00. We will probably pick that up this weekend.

This waiting is hard and I am not very good at it. Daniel and I didn't anticipate our rebuild taking this long. It took a good week and a half to get the floor off completely revealing the damage to the chassis. Took another week and a half to find an available reputable welding shop and now they have had the rig for 3 weeks. AAHHHH! To think I thought we could have this done in a month!  LOL!  I am hopeful that once we actually GET the rig back, the construction should go quickly. We don't have to work around existing parts, we have built it before so are already familiar with how to put it together, and are very clear on what we want so ... we will see. We can't wait to hit the road! Our friends are entering sainthood as they continue to put up with us living in their basement. LOL!

Hope you are all enjoying the summer and haven't been affected by the flooding in the Southeast or the fires in the Northwest. Be safe!

Paula
31' 2017 Custom Build on Ford E-350 chassis
Silvio Cruz Bike
2 dogs, a 7 year old and some crazy parents  :-)
http://randallgypsycaravan.wordpress.com/

Kevin Means

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Re: Ripping Her Apart!
« Reply #37 on: September 14, 2017, 11:52:15 AM »
Thanks for the update Paula. I sure you're taking pictures of the whole process.

Kev
2011 Winnebago Tour 42QD
Towing a Jeep Rubicon Unlimited LJ or an Acura MDX
RVI Brake 2, Minder TM-66 TPMS, 970 watts of solar
(Can't wait to spend more time RVing)
Lakeside, California

kdbgoat

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Re: Ripping Her Apart!
« Reply #38 on: September 14, 2017, 12:35:20 PM »
Thanks for the update Paula. I sure you're taking pictures of the whole process.

Kev

There's a bunch on her blog. A link is in her signature.
I know you believe you understand what you think I said,
But I am not sure you realize what you heard is not what I meant


2016 Leprechaun 319DS

Wa_mermayd

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    • Randall Gypsy Caravan
Re: Ripping Her Apart!
« Reply #39 on: October 02, 2017, 12:18:42 AM »
We have the rig back! Here is a video link to us picking it up from the welding shop and it shows the new axle nicely.

https://youtu.be/-GhifsPkWs8

Since we have gotten the RV back we have been doing the following:
  • Daniel has serviced the generator and in doing so discovered a squirrel's nest. No wonder it was overheating!
  • Daniel and our friend have been doing some spot welding to create new frames for the white water tank and the grey water tank. They completed the installation today.
Hopefully soon we will be able to install the new aluminum flooring and actually start construction. I will keep you posted.

Woo-Hoo!
31' 2017 Custom Build on Ford E-350 chassis
Silvio Cruz Bike
2 dogs, a 7 year old and some crazy parents  :-)
http://randallgypsycaravan.wordpress.com/

ClickHill

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Re: Ripping Her Apart!
« Reply #40 on: October 03, 2017, 06:02:18 PM »
Wow, I don't know what else to say.  I am looking forward to following the progress as you put her back together.
D & D
2015 Winnebago Itasca Merdian
2013 Chevy Equinox toad

Wa_mermayd

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    • Randall Gypsy Caravan
Re: Ripping Her Apart!
« Reply #41 on: October 08, 2017, 02:33:56 PM »
Hi All -

We have the aluminum down for the floor and the first layer of wood! The side frames are up but not yet extended to fit the new frame. All the pics are on our blog. You have no idea how excited I am to finally see the start of construction. Woo-Hoo! Of course, it's getting cold here in Eastern WA and the weather I think is coming. We have to get Winnie together FAST! We lost a whole month this summer that we are missing now. If it gets too cold, the filon won't bond and we are screwed. We would have to find a heated shop large enough for us to put Winnie in to install the filon and let it cure. Or we would have to leave w/o the filon on and head south to someplace warmer. Ugh - really don't want to do that. Cross your fingers we get an a streak of warm weather where the temps stay above 50!

Here is a link to the latest blog post with the pictures.
https://randallgypsycaravan.wordpress.com/2017/10/08/aluminum-is-down-this-means-we-have-a-floor/

Thanks All!
31' 2017 Custom Build on Ford E-350 chassis
Silvio Cruz Bike
2 dogs, a 7 year old and some crazy parents  :-)
http://randallgypsycaravan.wordpress.com/

Stephen S.

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Re: Ripping Her Apart!
« Reply #42 on: October 08, 2017, 02:45:07 PM »
hmmm...

Wondering about your decision to bend the sheet up. You now basically have a pan. Any leaks in the plumbing will stay in the pan.
Stephen S.
===============
'99 Winnebago Chalet
2002 VW Beetle
2007 Yamaha TW200
Home town: Mableton, GA

Wa_mermayd

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    • Randall Gypsy Caravan
Re: Ripping Her Apart!
« Reply #43 on: October 08, 2017, 02:57:31 PM »
hmmm...

Wondering about your decision to bend the sheet up. You now basically have a pan. Any leaks in the plumbing will stay in the pan.

Daniel has the plumbing running under the floor in ducts. All traps he says will be under the floor with just the pipes needed to get to faucets going through the floor. We are using the current standard blue & red Pex water pipes with copper fittings. While being optimistic - the only place we could have a leak above this floor is under the sinks which if quickly caught is manageable. One in the kitchen and one in the bathroom. The shower will drain through the floor. If one of those pipes develops a leak, well, we're screwed and will have to pull the duct to repair.
31' 2017 Custom Build on Ford E-350 chassis
Silvio Cruz Bike
2 dogs, a 7 year old and some crazy parents  :-)
http://randallgypsycaravan.wordpress.com/

Kevin Means

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Re: Ripping Her Apart!
« Reply #44 on: October 14, 2017, 11:26:07 AM »
Wow! I'm impressed! I admire your resourcefulness and tenacity.

Kev
2011 Winnebago Tour 42QD
Towing a Jeep Rubicon Unlimited LJ or an Acura MDX
RVI Brake 2, Minder TM-66 TPMS, 970 watts of solar
(Can't wait to spend more time RVing)
Lakeside, California

Wa_mermayd

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    • Randall Gypsy Caravan
Re: Ripping Her Apart!
« Reply #45 on: October 14, 2017, 11:53:50 PM »
Hi All -

We put the floor in today. We officially have a subfloor! Tomorrow will be spent extending the aluminum frame with bolts to fit our new length, and building the walls. We found a place to construct the walls indoors (which is absolutely necessary right now with the cold weather) and then we will install them onto the rig. We hope to get both sides constructed tomorrow and then they will cure for 24 before we install them. We don't have a door (anyone selling a rounded top door?) so are leaving the back open for now so we can more easily get things in and out. We have a new roofline so that will be a whole different thing. Should be pretty cool though. More on that when we know how it's going to work. :-)

Here is a link to the blog with pictures of us constructing the floor. http://wp.me/p1JNUa-J3

Thanks all!
31' 2017 Custom Build on Ford E-350 chassis
Silvio Cruz Bike
2 dogs, a 7 year old and some crazy parents  :-)
http://randallgypsycaravan.wordpress.com/

Wa_mermayd

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    • Randall Gypsy Caravan
Re: Ripping Her Apart!
« Reply #46 on: October 25, 2017, 03:57:59 PM »
Hi All -

Updates. We had a windstorm up here in Eastern WA - gusts up to 55mph. The tarp-garage that we were using as cover almost blew away. We managed to save the tarp and the poles but no more cover. With the weather changing, we can no longer work outside. We found a wonderful kind person who is letting us continue construction in her pole building. It means we are having to construct the walls away from the rig in their completion. I have a wonderful crew of new friends who are going to help us lift the walls onto the rig so we can install. We had to cut-off the lip of the aluminum that we were going to build into the walls. There was just no way to do that anymore. You can see our new roofline. Still well under 12' which is good. It means that we will have a neat cathedral ceiling in the living room which is cool and will give us the spacious feeling we are looking for.

We have started wall construction. We have done as much reinforcing of the aluminum as we can given time and money. More than was there before, not nearly as much as we were wanting. We are installing the first layer of Styrofoam insulation inside the frame. On-top of that will go another layer of insulation, then the luan and then the filon. We will cut out the windows after we get the walls installed on the rig.

There are more pictures on our blog but I did resize some to post here. Working against the weather! We just need to get the box of our home and we can drive south to warmer weather to continue work on the interior.
31' 2017 Custom Build on Ford E-350 chassis
Silvio Cruz Bike
2 dogs, a 7 year old and some crazy parents  :-)
http://randallgypsycaravan.wordpress.com/

muskoka guy

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Re: Ripping Her Apart!
« Reply #47 on: October 25, 2017, 09:23:47 PM »
Wow. What an incredible amount of work. Hats off to you for taking on such a unusual task. One would think it would have been cheaper to just buy a different unit. I hope the motor has low miles. You wouldnt want to get it all together then have engine problems. Good luck on the rest of your build, and keep the pics coming. Wow again.

Sun2Retire

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Re: Ripping Her Apart!
« Reply #48 on: October 25, 2017, 10:02:36 PM »
Really amazing. I applaud your fortitude, vision and work ethic.
Scott
2005 Newmar Dutch Star 3810, Spartan, Cat C7 350 "OURVEE"
Eezrv TPMS, VMSpc, 800W Solar
2002 Dodge RAM 1500 Quad Cab "RTOAD"
Stowmaster towbar & Brakemaster

Wa_mermayd

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    • Randall Gypsy Caravan
Re: Ripping Her Apart!
« Reply #49 on: October 30, 2017, 01:28:01 AM »
Hi All -

We have the two long walls done! We got them both done in a week. The second wall is curing right now and still needs to be trimmed but its built and will be installed onto our new floor and frame tomorrow. YAY! Now we have two days to get the back wall and ceiling in place in some form before snow hits. Wish us luck and about 4 more hands to help! LOL! Anyone in Eastern WA want to come visit?

Here is a link to the video of us unrolling the filon onto the glue. We didn't use contact cement this time like we did in 2011. It's too cold. There was no way for us to heat the pole building enough to meet the temperature requirements for the contact cement. So we are using the next best recommended thing we could find that did NOT have a low temp requirement. It's a tough as nails product - I am completely flaking on the name of. I could point out the canister in about 2 seconds but I'm whipped right now. Pics are on the blogsite and here is a link to the video of us unrolling the filon on the second wall.

https://wp.me/p1JNUa-L5

Enjoy!
31' 2017 Custom Build on Ford E-350 chassis
Silvio Cruz Bike
2 dogs, a 7 year old and some crazy parents  :-)
http://randallgypsycaravan.wordpress.com/

Wa_mermayd

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    • Randall Gypsy Caravan
Re: Ripping Her Apart!
« Reply #50 on: November 09, 2017, 08:35:48 PM »
Hi All -

Updates:
  • We got the walls finished and installed.
  • We put in aluminum rods across the top of the rig to reinforce the ceiling and make the rig more stable.
  • We got the curve of the cab-over done

We also got snow and super cold temps for a week. Check out our progress on our blog. I posted tons of pictures showing the progress and steps.   Here is a link to the latest post:  https://wp.me/p1JNUa-Lz

Thanks! Looking forward to seeing you on the road. :-)
31' 2017 Custom Build on Ford E-350 chassis
Silvio Cruz Bike
2 dogs, a 7 year old and some crazy parents  :-)
http://randallgypsycaravan.wordpress.com/

QZ

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Re: Ripping Her Apart!
« Reply #51 on: November 09, 2017, 09:20:53 PM »
WOW. Honey get the curtains!  You are doing fantastic.  :)

Wa_mermayd

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    • Randall Gypsy Caravan
Re: Ripping Her Apart!
« Reply #52 on: November 09, 2017, 11:46:11 PM »
WOW. Honey get the curtains!  You are doing fantastic.  :)

LOL - Thank you. Interestingly enough, I did get curtains. We are changing the window configuration so we are not so much as a fishbowl on display. I picked up some neat sheers from World Market I am going to rip apart and combine into some nice curtains for Winnie.  :-)
31' 2017 Custom Build on Ford E-350 chassis
Silvio Cruz Bike
2 dogs, a 7 year old and some crazy parents  :-)
http://randallgypsycaravan.wordpress.com/

Wa_mermayd

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    • Randall Gypsy Caravan
Re: Ripping Her Apart!
« Reply #53 on: November 10, 2017, 04:00:39 AM »
One of the biggest repairs any RV owner does with their class C is the cab-over. We redesigned ours. We flipped the curve.

If you look at the picture of the original frame of the cab-over, you will notice that we got rid of the big swoop/that big angle in the front were the big ever-leaking window used to go. Now the only curve is at the very top. That was originally the bottom - right over the cab.  Does that make sense? I am attaching a picture of the internal structure of the new cab-over as we were building the wall.

This gives us a lot more room in our cab-over. We can sit-up. We can stretch. Room!

I guess the only other thing we changed in construction method was that we stopped using the self tapping screws for working with the aluminum and are using rivets. A member on this forum made the suggestion in another post and they are working much better for us.

I will post a separate post about how we built the walls.

« Last Edit: November 10, 2017, 04:02:55 AM by Wa_mermayd »
31' 2017 Custom Build on Ford E-350 chassis
Silvio Cruz Bike
2 dogs, a 7 year old and some crazy parents  :-)
http://randallgypsycaravan.wordpress.com/

Stephen S.

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Re: Ripping Her Apart!
« Reply #54 on: November 11, 2017, 03:30:34 PM »
I noticed in a previous post you were changing the roofline to go up in front, more like a 5th wheel layout, with a rise in roof height above the bed area.

If I rework my current class C, I'd like to do that. Raise it up as much as the height of the AC unit without changing my bridge clearance. That would give anyone up in front a LOT more room to move around in.
Stephen S.
===============
'99 Winnebago Chalet
2002 VW Beetle
2007 Yamaha TW200
Home town: Mableton, GA

Wa_mermayd

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    • Randall Gypsy Caravan
Re: Ripping Her Apart!
« Reply #55 on: November 12, 2017, 03:56:47 AM »
I noticed in a previous post you were changing the roofline to go up in front, more like a 5th wheel layout, with a rise in roof height above the bed area.

If I rework my current class C, I'd like to do that. Raise it up as much as the height of the AC unit without changing my bridge clearance. That would give anyone up in front a LOT more room to move around in.

Exactly. Now we can stand in our living room and we can't touch the ceiling. It gives a wonderful feeling of spaciousness to the rig. Super excited to actually get this to a point where we are living in it again.
31' 2017 Custom Build on Ford E-350 chassis
Silvio Cruz Bike
2 dogs, a 7 year old and some crazy parents  :-)
http://randallgypsycaravan.wordpress.com/

DanielRandall

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Re: Ripping Her Apart!
« Reply #56 on: November 13, 2017, 02:40:45 AM »
The most space was claimed by the removal of the 2 angles at the top and front of the cabover; it looks aerodynamic but it is actually "placebo aerodynamics"; NASA research (https://www.nasa.gov/sites/default/files/images/638366main_E81-38091_full_full.jpg) shows modifications to a passenger van where "The resulting vehicle-re-fashioned with sheet metal-resembled a motor home, with rounded vertical corners on the vehicle's front and rear sections." The "boat tail" on the rear end provides the most important part of the aerodynamics, as it is similar to a "Kammback" design (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kammback). I plan to add a fold-down deck to the rear end, with and integrated Kammback that would become the support foot when the deck is deployed.


DanielRandall

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Re: Ripping Her Apart!
« Reply #57 on: November 13, 2017, 02:57:10 AM »
I also admit that I was inspired by a notable re-use of a prop on Star Trek (between the original and Next Generation), where the old transporter room floor became the new transporter room ceiling; I am also into recycling, repairing, and re-use of things (my PC was purchased from a recycled computer store, for example).

DanielRandall

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Re: Ripping Her Apart!
« Reply #58 on: November 13, 2017, 03:15:04 AM »
Today we installed the "xtrm ply" PVC roofing membrane; we started the adhesive application at Noon to take advantage of a high temp of 48 degrees Fahrenheit that occurred here Today. The instructions contained no mention of a minimum operating temp, other than a "do not freeze" label on the can. The VOC quotient was very low; it was no more stinky than a typical latex paint. It is now below freezing out there; hoping that the bond cure will not be affected (it was very sticky and gluing my gloves to the pole on the paint roller). 

Wa_mermayd

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    • Randall Gypsy Caravan
Re: Ripping Her Apart!
« Reply #59 on: November 14, 2017, 02:51:55 PM »
Today we installed the "xtrm ply" PVC roofing membrane; we started the adhesive application at Noon to take advantage of a high temp of 48 degrees Fahrenheit that occurred here Today. The instructions contained no mention of a minimum operating temp, other than a "do not freeze" label on the can. The VOC quotient was very low; it was no more stinky than a typical latex paint. It is now below freezing out there; hoping that the bond cure will not be affected (it was very sticky and gluing my gloves to the pole on the paint roller).

Here are some pics of the work.
31' 2017 Custom Build on Ford E-350 chassis
Silvio Cruz Bike
2 dogs, a 7 year old and some crazy parents  :-)
http://randallgypsycaravan.wordpress.com/

 

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