RSS Feed

Monthly Archives: February 2014

Applying birch veneer

Just a quick post to talk about applying birch veneer.  As I posted previously, I applied some birch veneer to the cabinet door and was successful (so I thought).  I noticed when I inspected the cabinet door today that some bubbles/wrinkles had appeared.  I was able to smooth it out, but I’m wondering if they […]

Super Bowl Sunday

What does the Super Bowl mean to me?  Or maybe I should ask the question, what does football mean to me?  The answer is nothing, and honestly I could not care less who is playing in the Super Bowl in any given year.  The only things I find exciting about the Super Bowl are the commercials.  And maybe the Puppy Bowl. haha  I went to my first NFL game last year when I was lucky enough to get two tickets in my company’s suite at the Texans game.  Unfortunately, the Texans had their worst year ever, so of course they lost the game.  A lot of fans were upset, but I was just excited about the free fancy food and drinks in the suite.  I could have been watching potato sack races for all I cared, and it would have been just as fun. haha  I never have understood how people can get so excited about football, as if their lives depended on whether their team won every game.  To me it’s just a game.  But I guess those people probably look at me and wonder why in the world I want to spend hours and hours every weekend restoring an old camper named Junebug.  One of my friends, who happens to be a football fan, said Junebug looks like a rusty old beer can.  I definitely took offense to that!  Does my life depend on whether I can restore Junebug to her former glory in the same way that some people get so caught up in a football season, tailgating, fantasy football and all the things that go along with it?  Yes, I suppose you could say I’m equally obsessed.  And if I look at it like that, maybe getting obsessed with football isn’t so bad.  It’s just a way to distract yourself for a few hours during the week from the stresses at work or in your life and focus on something other than yourself.  It provides a much needed escape and gives you a sense of community and purpose.  All of the others out there who are restoring vintage campers are my community now, just like football fans can be for each other.  These are the things that make life just a little sweeter.

Yesterday was a super frustrating day.  I didn’t hear from the guy I like, despite sending him a text in the morning (although I did just hear from him this morning, but why it took an entire day to respond is beyond me, I just don’t understand men and I probably never will!). rolleyes I made some progress on Junebug but ran into some difficulties along the way and may have to redo part my measurements on a piece of wood I cut to replace part of the frame.

The welder couldn’t make it to my house before dark on Friday, so he ended up coming first thing Saturday morning.  He showed up at 8am and didn’t warn me he was on the way, so luckily I had just gotten dressed when the doorbell rang!  He didn’t know I took his picture. hehe  razz


It took him about an hour to complete the work, not only did he replace the cross beam that was bent, but he also added two additional beams to extend to the rear of the camper in order to provide structure for the bumper that will be added later.  I can tell a huge difference when I walk on the floor now, it feels sturdier.  The floor is also finally level!



Beams are extending out the back but will be adjusted to fit the bumper and most likely shortened, depending on what it looks like when the skin is back on.

While the welder was working, I got out the skill saw and started cutting the paneling I received on Friday.  I cut all of the 1/8″ birch to 78 cm/6’6″ in length in order to fit the ceiling.  I think I may have gotten more panels than I actually needed but that’s ok, it gives me some wiggle room in case I mess one up.  When I cut the first couple, the birch veneer splintered pretty badly as I got to the end of the panel.  I realized after that that I needed to cut about three quarters of the way first, then flip the panel around and start from the other side to complete the cut.  That seemed to help enormously with the splintering problem.  I hope that when I use the jigsaw to cut out holes for the windows, etc that it doesn’t splinter.  That will be hard to hide.  Fingers crossed!


I made quite a mess in my garage with all of the wood cutting. Sawdust everywhere!

After the welder was finished, I paid him and then started measuring and cutting the lauan (that’s a type of wood) to go over the subfloor to smooth it out in preparation for the new tiles.  That was a quick job, and I was happy with the result.


Now I just need to glue it down and bolt it to the frame. I still need to add a couple of bolts to the new metal beam because he couldn’t get the existing bolts removed and had to cut them.

After that, I went to Home Depot to buy another attachment for my oscillating tool as well as some more wood and other supplies.  By the time I left there, I had somehow managed to spend over $200. eek

I measured the lower frame around the baggage door in order to replace the wood there.  It was pretty rotten as well as the beam behind the frame in that spot.  This is where my day got frustrating.  I thought this would be relatively easy, but what I didn’t realize was the new metal beam was sticking out a little too far on that side, so I had to cut a notch in my new frame to make it fit.  Then I realized that the existing frame was a little too low in that spot, and I can’t pick it up to get it level.  I noticed that the wheel well on that side is slightly bent, and I’m sure it’s once again a direct result of the previous damage to the frame, etc.  So, after cutting a new piece of frame, it didn’t quite fit right and I was covered in sweat trying to get it wedged in there!  It didn’t help that it was almost 80 degrees yesterday in Houston with about the same percentage humidity.  It’s only a matter of time before the mosquitoes return in full force and attack me all over while I’m trying to work on Junebug.


Before. Frame is black and rotten. Yuck

I used my jig saw to cut the wood into the right shape.  It worked great!


After. Not perfect and it’s not screwed in yet. I’m trying to decide if I want to remeasure this piece to ensure a perfect fit. You can see the notch on the lower right that I had to cut to leave room for the new metal beam that’s sticking out.


New floor beam. I used a 2×4 instead of a 1×3 3/4 (I think) just to make it sturdier. I’ve noticed that Shasta skimped on the construction when it came to the materials they used.

I’m not sure what project I’ll tackle today.  I think I may try to glue some veneer onto a few more pieces.  It’s raining outside, so it’s not a good day to work on the framing.  I think I could use a break from that anyway!  One thing is for sure, even though I don’t care about the Super Bowl, I will be going to a party to watch it later today.  Or at least the commercials anyway.  smile emoticon Happy Super Bowl Sunday everyone!