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Party Time!

Party Time!

I’m a little overdue for this post, sorry!  I had my unveiling party last Friday, and I think it was a huge success!  The next day, I ran a 5K (Wicked Wine Run, 5K and then wine tasting at the end haha) and then on Sunday, I rested.  I had a pretty busy week at work, so I am just now getting around to writing an update on here about the festivities.  I will start by sharing some photos of Junebug after I got her all ready for the party.  I was very pleased with how she turned out, even though I still have a few more things to complete (screen door, baggage door, trim around bottom edge of exterior).  The day of the party, I hopped out of bed at 6am, eager to finish making all of the preparations.  I think that’s the first time in my adult life that I’ve ever gotten up that early on my own for something non-work related.  haha

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View of the tongue with my custom painted tank. I still need to take it to a propane place to see if they’ll actually service this tank. If not, I guess I’ll have to resort to getting a new one. Fingers crossed they’ll accept this one since I put so much work into it!

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I think she looks quite pretty with my roses in the foreground. 🙂

 

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Another view.

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She had to have these little twinkle lights.

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Street side. The new 30 amp stainless inlet looks pretty good here I think.

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The wind chime hanging on the door was a gift from a coworker that she picked up in Alaska. My coworkers have been so supportive throughout this project!

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Little measuring spoon set that a coworker gave me. They have owls on them!

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A little more decor for the kitchen.

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I added some magnets to the fridge and a larger magnet on the stove. Of course, it has an owl on it. 🙂

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I think the starburst patterns on the benches turned out pretty cool.

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The framed hipster owl. I also have a couple of fun books on glamping and trailer history.

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A better view of the bed and benches. So cozy!

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Little bathroom complete with vintage trailer reading material (not that I’ll be spending a lot of time in here). haha

I had about 40 people show up for the party, and it was a great time!  Everyone was very excited to see the finished product.  I asked everyone to dress up in 1950s/60s outfits to get in the mood.  I ordered my dress, shoes, and petticoat from www.pinupgirlclothing.com.  I love that site!  They have the cutest pin up clothes, and the quality is great.

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My best friend, Jennifer, and I all dressed up for the party!

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My coworker, Natalie, and her husband, Kevin.

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This is my friend and stylist, Josafatt. He did my hair! I wish I could do it this way every day, it was so fun!

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Jennifer and her boyfriend, Ayk.

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Everyone is gathered around for the big unveiling!

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I had the tarp over Junebug so that I wouldn’t spoil the surprise.

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And here she is!!

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I’m about to open the door to let everyone take a peek inside!

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My friend, Thomas, spared no expense and brought multiple bottles of Veuve Clicquot to celebrate the big event!

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Cheers!! I’m overjoyed to be done (almost) with this big project!!

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I tried to give a speech here but it wasn’t the best since I didn’t prepare ahead of time, oh well, hoepfully no one cared. haha

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Here I am about to christen Junebug. I didn’t want to waste any Veuve Clicquot, so I used a bottle of beer instead. 🙂 To be safe, I wore my cut resistant gloves donated to me by my neighbor, Jarred.

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Baxter loves a good party!

I was supposed to go to the TCT vintage camper rally in Lake Charles, Louisiana this weekend.  Unfortunately, I am having problems with my tail lights and I decided I couldn’t go.  I didn’t wire them myself, I had Oscar do that, and now they don’t work properly.  confused  The weird part is that they work fine when they’re plugged into Oscar’s Ford Explorer.  For some reason, they don’t work right when connected to my VW Tiguan.  I’m sure it’s some kind of compatibility issue, but I don’t know how to fix it.  I’m taking Junebug to the place that installed my wiring and hitch on the Tiguan either tomorrow or Saturday morning, depending on the weather.  I even ordered new tail lights from www.vintagetrailersupply.com and that didn’t fix the problem.

My plan for the weekend is to hopefully get the tail lights fixed, then finish building the new screen door.  I also borrowed a soldering iron from my friend Casey’s boyfriend, so that I could solder all of the wire connections together in the camper.  I am still a little nervous they might come loose while I’m towing the camper somewhere and then become hazardous when I’m camping due to exposed wires.  I thought if I really wanted to be on the safe side, I could solder the wires together and melt some shrink wrap over them to ensure they don’t come apart.

I am planning to go to Austin next weekend for a baby sprinkle, so I’m thinking I may take Junebug there for the first big trip since the restoration.  We’ll see, it all depends on the tail lights!  Either way, I’m definitely taking her to her first vintage camper rally the weekend of October 10-11 to join the Texas Vintage Trailer Club’s rally in Fentress, TX.  Can’t wait!

 

 

 

 

The Home Stretch, Part 3

The Home Stretch, Part 3

I had a rough weekend.  I didn’t even want to write a post yesterday because I was so frustrated, I just had to get away from it all.  I tried for a good part of Saturday to get the electrical system to work, and I felt like I wasn’t getting anywhere.  I didn’t want to get too far off track even though I couldn’t get the electrical system to work, so I still managed to cross a few other things off my list.

I had to run a few errands first.  I needed to pick up some Dicor lap leveling sealant to go around the seams on the Fantastic Vent on the roof.  Even though I sealed it first with putty tape, you still have to go over the top of that with the Dicor sealant to ensure it’s water tight.  I also had some seams that were exposed because my j-rail wasn’t covering them all the way so I got some Sikaflex sealant to cover those.  I don’t think it’s technically the way you’re supposed to do it, but I wanted the added protection since there were some areas exposed.  I got it in grey, so it doesn’t look too bad.  I still need to trim it in a few places where it got a little goopy.

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Here’s a pic before adding the Dicor. It’s just got the putty tape between the vent and the roof.

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I made this barrier to go around the vent because I wasn’t sure how much the sealant was going to spread and I didn’t want it going all over the place.

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Turns out I didn’t need the barrier. Oh well, better safe than sorry!

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Here’s a pic of the Sikaflex sealant I applied in the cracks of the j-rail. The top of the j-rail had a better seal because it was completely covering the seams. It was just on this side in some places where I had folded the roof over too far. I think I’ll trim it a little but it doesn’t look too bad.

It poured down rain today and I let Junebug get rained on for the first time in a long time.  I guess I figured I needed to test her seals out to see if anything leaked.  From what I could tell, everything stayed bone dry, so that was awesome!

I decided yesterday that maybe I wanted to put the old light fixtures back in the camper instead of the new crappy ones I bought.  I needed to clean up one of them because it had gotten rusty, probably due to getting wet because it was the one above the kitchenette.  While I was messing with the rusty fixture, the neutral wire broke off of the light socket.  ugh  Rather than throw out this fixture, which I still think is better than the new one, I decided to buy a new light socket and install it in the old fixture.  It worked great!

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Both old fixtures. The one on the right is rusted because it had been in the kitchen.

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One of the fixtures now has a new light socket.

I thought maybe my ground wire wasn’t getting a good connection with the frame of the camper, so I removed it and used my wire brush attachment for my drill to scrape off all of the paint from the frame.  I then reattached the ground to the frame and it didn’t help.  I decided to give up on the electrical after that and try again on Sunday.

Today, the first thing I did was go to Home Depot to buy a multimeter so I could start testing every connection of the electrical system to find the problem.  I didn’t want a really expensive one since this was probably the only time I would use it.  I ended up getting a Klein http://www.homedepot.com/p/Klein-Tools-Electrical-Analog-Multimeter-Test-Kit-69149/204367271.

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When I got home, I first tested the outlet in the garage that I was plugging the camper into.  It tested 120v which was the right voltage.  Then I went inside the camper and turned off both breakers inside the breaker box and tested the main power coming into the breaker box.  It also tested 120v, so I knew it wasn’t the power inlet or the cord I was using.  Since I have two circuits in the camper, one for the exterior plug and one for all of the interior wiring, I turned just the exterior plug breaker on first.  It was simpler since it’s only one plug for the entire circuit.  I did this on purpose because the AC will plug into this and it draws more power than anything else I will be using.  I tested the exterior plug and it worked great, showing 120v.  Next, I turned off that breaker and turned on the second breaker that powers the circuit for three outlets and two lights inside the camper.  I knew the problem was somewhere along this circuit.  I slowly went through the connections, one at a time, disconnecting the wires further down the circuit so I could isolate each one.  About halfway through, my stupid multimeter broke!!   At first I thought the outlet wasn’t working correctly, then I realized it was just the multimeter.  ugh.  I decided it was time for a lunch break so I could try to destress.  After that, I went back to Home Depot and returned the Klein multimeter and bought an even cheaper one made by Commercial Electric.  It worked just fine to finish the job.
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After disconnecting and reconnecting everything, the lights worked!!  I still don’t know exactly where the problem was.  It could have been the cheap fixtures I had in the camper before.  Or, it could have been a loose connection somewhere that I fixed when I reconnected everything.   Either way, I was just so relieved that it finally worked!!

After that, I knew I still needed to do a few more things.  I wanted to make a new garnish to go around the Fantastic Vent on the interior because I had done a crappy job trimming the plastic garnish that it came with.  I think my new custom garnish turned out much nicer than the plastic one anyway!

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I bought some nice birch wood for the screen door on Saturday, but I just didn’t have enough time to build it thanks to the stupid electric issues.  Oh well, I can always get to that later.

I also wanted to polish the wings today and install those, but I didn’t have time before dark.  Instead, I added a few more decorative items inside and then sat on the bed and had a glass of wine to celebrate.

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These owl glasses are actually from the 1960s, I picked them up at a vintage shop and love them!

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Owl never lose my keys again with this handy hook. 🙂

 

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This came on the vintage camper mug that my mom gave me for Christmas. I thought it was cute too so I saved it so that it could have a permanent home inside Junebug.

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I got this little sign when I was living in France. Since this is the bathroom (well…port-o-potty for nighttime emergencies only), I thought it was a cute little addition.

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I added some purple star twinkle lights above the bed. It’s so cozy now! I can’t wait to spend the night in it.

Only a few more days until my big reveal party!!  After that, I will post more pictures of the entire exterior and interior.  I can’t wait to show off all of my hard work! biggrin

 

The Home Stretch, Part 2

I had a pretty productive day!  Unfortunately, I also discovered today that my stupid light fixtures inside the camper still don’t work!  I don’t know what is the problem this time.  There seems to be power going to them and the outlets on the same circuit work when I plug in the main power inlet, so who knows.  I called the guy from RV Masters, and he’s going to come by tomorrow to have a look at them.  He’d better fix it!

The first thing I did today was paint the wheels.   The thing I hate about painting is all of the preparation that it takes.  It took me much longer to prep the area for painting than it did to do the actual painting.  Oh well, in the end, it was worth it!  I think they look pretty.  smile

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First, I had to clean the wheels with degreaser.

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All clean!

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Taped off and ready for paint (this part took a while)

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After a coat of primer

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Three coats of purple

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Street side after 3 coats of purple

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All done!

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You can see my reflection in the baby moon hubcap 🙂

While I was in the process of painting the wheels, I finished painting the closet too.

Later, after the paint was dry, I installed the vinyl wall map of the US on the closet wall.  I think it looks pretty cool!

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I also finished moving the exterior outlet and patching the previous hole.  I added some flexible duct work to lead to the vent for the AC on the interior of the camper.  I still haven’t added a vent cover, I’m not sure if I will, or if I’ll just attach another piece of duct work when I’m inside the camper to make the air flow upward toward the bed area.

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I added another piece of paneling in front of the AC duct to cover it when it’s not in use. I can remove that piece to reveal another piece of paneling with a hole in it so that the air can flow out from the AC duct when I’m using it.

After finishing those things, I finished securing the drawer under the bed and added some support to the beams that hold up the bed cushions.  I also hung some pictures and installed the closet door.  I don’t want to show a picture of the entire interior until after my big reveal party next weekend, but I’ll share one of the street side, just to give you an idea.  biggrin

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So, if I look at my list again, here’s what I still have left for this weekend:

  • Install interior crown around Fantastic Vent (I think I may make one instead of using the plastic one it came with)
  • Install two emblems (Trailer Coach Association & small Shasta emblem)
  • Seal cracks and staples on exterior as well as vent on roof with sealant (need to pick this up from RV Masters)
  • Polish WINGS and reinstall (This will be my favorite part!)

If there’s time:

  • Build new screen door (forgot this in my last post)
  • Install baggage door
  • Install trim around bottom edge of exterior

I’m getting so close!!

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Kodachrome


When I was in high school, we used to listen to Simon and Garfunkel almost daily.  My friends and I loved their song Kodachrome the most and would sing along to it all the time.  I don’t know why, maybe because they sing about high school or maybe just because it’s a happy song.  Either way, the song brings back happy memories.  I’m listening to the song now as I write this, and it has a slightly different meaning to me.  He sings about how Kodachrome makes every day look like a sunny day.  I can only assume he means the film, which they discontinued in 2010.  It makes me think of Facebook and how people usually tend to post only the best and happiest photos.  I guess Facebook is my generation’s Kodachrome. haha

The reason I chose to title this post Kodachrome was because I discovered the beauty of chrome spray paint today..and I will be posting photos, so it seemed fitting.  biggrin

 

I wanted to paint the spare tire today as well as the hitch and bumper.  While I was at it, I also painted the propane tank.  I think it turned out pretty cool!

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First, I went to AutoZone and got the spray paint. I bought some primer as well as the chrome and purple paint for the wheel.

 

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Next, I cleaned the spare tire with degreaser. It’s an old tire, so hopefully I won’t need to use it. I will likely get new tires for the trailer at some point, and then I can put one of those on the spare tire mount.

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I taped off the tire so it wouldn’t get paint on it.

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After primer

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Purple!

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Mounted again and I also painted the bumper with the chrome paint.

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This is the piece that fits over the front of the spare tire to hold it onto the bumper.

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After two coats of purple. I also painted the nuts. 🙂

 

And now to the front of the camper.


 

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After painting the hitch with primer, I noticed some numbers on the side. This must be my VIN!

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Primed the propane tank too

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Hitch is primed

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After one coat of chrome paint

 

I wanted to do a similar design on the propane tank as my camper will have (once I get it painted).

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I taped off the stripe and coated the top half with chrome.

 

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Getting ready to paint on the purple.

 

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Both colors are on and waiting for them to dry so I can pull off the tape.

 

 

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Finished product! I think the stripe is a little too fat but that was the only size painter’s tape I had so oh well.

I also painted a few other details that needed to be installed.

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This is the door catch so the front door can be propped open.

 

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This is the Shasta emblem that I paid a lot for. I just had to have it!

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Not quite the same as getting it rechromed, but it looks pretty good and a lot cheaper too!

Next, I set out to install my new Fantastic Vent.  It proved to be a difficult task (what a surprise), because I had inserted some additional framing pieces underneath the skin to make it sit a little higher (to help the water run off) and they were making the hole too small for the vent.  I couldn’t just take them out because they were all attached to make a square.  So…I had to get out my oscillating tool and saw away at the sides until I got it to be big enough for the fan to fit inside.  It took a while, but at least I finally got it installed!

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Hole from the interior.

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After trimming away at the edges and cutting out the hole in the skin.

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And it’s finally in!

I still need to seal it again with Dicor lap-leveling sealant. http://www.amazon.com/Pack-Dicor-Self-leveling-Lap-Sealant/dp/B00H554R98/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1409626405&sr=8-2&keywords=dicor+lap+sealant   I don’t have any, so I need to pick some up at the RV shop.  I’m keeping the cover on Junebug now anyway so I’m not in a rush to finish sealing it just yet.

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Here it is from the inside. I still need to add the frame piece to cover up the edges and tuck the wires in.

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The interior frame piece that fits around the hole for the fan sticks up too high, so I needed to trim it. Unfortunately, I didn’t have a good tool for this and ended up using my tin snips. It made the edges all jagged. I haven’t installed it yet because I want to see if I can smooth the edges first.

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I had to order a 12v to 115v converter so that I could power my Fantastic Vent since I don’t have 12v set up in my camper at the moment. Luckily, this part went better than my overall electrical wiring experience, and it worked the first time!

The fan works great, and I can’t wait to use it when I’m camping and don’t need the AC.

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My newly painted hitch and propane tank look pretty snazzy. 🙂

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Here’s a pic with the vent hood open. It’s translucent, so it adds a little light in the camper even when closed.

 

I installed the Shasta emblem and I think it looks really cool!  I was worried maybe you couldn’t see it very well since it’s silver and the skin is silver.  I think it still shows up just fine though.  I think I’m on the right track to finish on time now!   The electrician is coming tomorrow to make sure my wiring is done well, and then I’m on the home stretch!  smile  Have a good week and I’ll be back next weekend!

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Sigh of Relief

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Today went much better than yesterday, all I had to do was stay AWAY from the electrical wiring.  haha  I went back to doing some other things in Junebug that I’m much better at.  I feel like I got a lot done and am feeling pretty good about how things are looking!

It was raining this morning, so I decided to run some errands before getting started.  I needed to return some things to Lowe’s and pick up some new items, plus go grocery shopping.  I finally found the other matching mirror at Target that I had been searching for so that I could install it behind the star cutout in my bench.  I already had one and needed another one.

When I got home, I started working on finishing the benches.  I also bought some spray foam gap filler so I could fill in the holes in the closet where the drains used to be.   I thought about closing the holes some other way, but this seemed like the easiest.   It worked great!  Later I will sand it down and paint over it.

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Here’s the hole where the power inlet used to be.

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These holes were for the sink drain and vent. There were galvanized pipes here, and I promptly did away with those. They were taking up way too much space!

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The hole after spraying some foam into it. It expanded into a bubble, it was kind of funny.

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After it dried, I cut the excess off with a kitchen knife. This stuff works great!

After installing the mirrors behind the star cutouts in my benches, I noticed the mirror was reflecting the backside of the wood, and it wasn’t pretty.  I decided to remove the mirrors and paint the backside purple so it would look better.  Then I reinstalled the mirrors and secured the benches to the floor.

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While the purple paint was drying, I decided to hang the curtains.  You can see them in the above photo, but I’ll post another one here at a different angle.  I think they look so nice against the shellacked wood!

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I also finished adding some wood trim around the window in the kitchen.

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My friend, Tracy, gave me this doormat with a J on it.  I’ve been using it for the house, but now I can also use it for Junebug, how perfect!  biggrin

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Next, I needed to add some vinyl welt in the seams between the walls and the ceiling.  I was supposed to do this before I attached the ceiling panels, but I totally forgot.  oops  My cutouts for the wall panels weren’t exactly the right size, so I needed to add the welt (similar to the original design) to cover up the gap.  I nailed it in using tiny nails so they weren’t too noticeable.  It isn’t perfect, but I think it looks pretty good and it covers the gap.   I actually found this welt through a boat supplier.  It’s meant for marine upholstery, but it works great for this purpose too!   http://veada.com/marine-vinyl-boat-upholstery/vinyl-welt-cord-piping.html.

 

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Before

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After

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Street side – after

I also added some trim pieces to the door frame.

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Here’s a picture of the exterior street side.  Can you spot the mistake I made cutting the new skin and had to cover up?  I don’t think it looks too bad.  You can see it, but it’s not a glaring mistake at least.

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While I was at Target, I picked up a couple of frames for my owl art that I plan to hang in Junebug.  Oh yeah, in case I didn’t mention it before, I’m obsessed with owls and plan to have an owl theme in Junebug. smile

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I was really hungry after doing all of the things I just mentioned, so I took a break and made myself a filet mignon with grilled okra and portabella mushroom.  I burned my filet a little because the grill’s fire was too hot.  Luckily, the flavor was still awesome and I thoroughly enjoyed it.  After eating, I got back to work.  I wanted to finish making the bench seats today.

In order to make the seats, I had to take apart the seat backs that I had made back in December.  I wanted to reuse the foam and material since it was so expensive.   I also removed the material from the long seat cushions since I didn’t need those to be purple anyway because they’ll be covered up with bedding.  The foam wasn’t the right size, so I had to cut it and piece together a couple of different sizes to get it to work.   Once wrapped with the batting and material, I don’t think the seam in the foam will be noticeable.

 

 

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Foam cut and ready for the batting.

I discovered that my good serrated kitchen knife worked great to cut through the foam!  I wish I would have discovered that the first time I was making these seat cushions.   Live and learn I guess.

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Batting is stapled down and the cushion is ready for the material.

 

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Adding the material.

 

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Seat cushion is complete!

 

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All the seat cushions and seat backs are now complete! The black cushions in back are the original ones from the camper and will be used for the bed. They are actually pretty comfortable!

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Seat on curb side. I added my Shasta pillow for the full effect. It looks pretty cute!

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Here’s the street side seat. I sat on it to try it out and it’s quite comfy!

Tomorrow, I’m planning to finish the bed and closet, then install the Fantastic Vent if it’s not raining.  If it’s raining, I may only be able to do interior work.  I also need to finish moving the hole in the floor leading to the exterior plug underneath the camper.  This wasn’t an urgent item, but it needs to be done, especially with the electrician coming on Tuesday.

I’m feeling pretty excited now that everything is coming together!  I can’t wait to get more done tomorrow.  smile


 

Let There Be Light!

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I think there have been a few days where I was really frustrated and wanted to quit, but today takes the cake.  I knew I wasn’t talented at electrical work and today proved me right.  After spending quite a while hooking up all of the new fixtures and outlets last weekend and during the past week, I was ready to finish hooking up the breaker box, power inlet, and ground wire so I could plug the camper in.  I managed to finish the breaker box and shore power inlet pretty quickly, as well as drilling a hole in the floor for the ground wire and attaching it to the frame below the camper.

In order to figure out how to wire the new breaker box in the first place, I consulted my favorite forum, http://vintagetrailertalk.freeforums.net/thread/2368/71-shasta-loflyte-amp-upgrade.  The thread I just linked is one that includes step by step instructions on how to upgrade your standard 15 amp system to a 30 amp.

 

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I followed the instructions from the forum on my iPad while I worked.

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I removed the 60 amp breaker that this box came with and replaced it with two breakers, one 20 amp (left) and one 15 amp (right).  In this pic, I have already connected the 20 amp circuit to the breaker.  It will feed the lights and outlets inside the camper.

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In this picture, I have connected the 20 amp circuit (seen on bottom of pic) and the shore power inlet. I used 10 gauge wire for the shore power inlet and 12 gauge for the other wiring.

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And here’s the box with the last circuit installed that will go to the external outlet for the AC (and twinkle lights :)). Since the AC draws 7 amps of power, I thought it would be best for it to run on its own circuit.   You can see that I used a jumper wire to complete the circuit from the 20 amp to the 15 amp breaker. I used 10 gauge wire for the jumper wire.

After connecting all of the circuits, I went outside to hook up my shore power inlet.  I had to buy another hole saw for the job.  Not sure what I’ll do with these hole saws when I’m done!  I ordered my stainless steel 30 amp power inlet from http://www.vintagetrailersupply.com/.  I looked around online and they actually had the best price on these.  I also ordered a 30′ cord to connect to the shore power plug at the campground.  Both of these items are made by the same manufacturer, Furrion.  The cord even has an LED light on the end near the plug to indicate if polarity is reversed.  If it’s lit blue, that means the trailer is wired correctly and if it’s red, that tells you that the electrical current is not running as it should be, which is probably due to incorrect wiring.    I thought this was handy seeing as how there was a good chance I did something wrong on the trailer wiring!

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Here’s my stainless steel power inlet and the 2 3/4″ hole saw I needed to make room for it.

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Hole is cut and ready to install power inlet.

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All installed! It’s nice a shiny, just like Junebug’s skin!

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Here’s the interior pic of the power inlet. I accidentally removed a little too much of the sheath over the wires, so I added a bit and taped it down, just for added protection. I’m pretty sure it will be fine but I wanted to be safe. I used screws that were a little too long and they poke through the wall, oops. Luckily this will be hidden by the bed anyway.

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I used some insulated staples to secure the wires.

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The final task was to connect the ground wire (seen in green). I drilled a hole through the floor and ran it down below the camper and wrapped it around a bolt attached to the frame.

After hooking everything up, I was ready to plug it in!  I was so nervous that my knees were literally shaking.  I don’t like to mess around with electricity.  I went in the garage and plugged in the end of the cord.  I went back over to the camper and didn’t see that the light had come on.  I stupidly went to the fixture and pulled the chain.  It shocked me! eek  And.. it didn’t turn on.  ugh  I went back and unplugged the cord.   So disappointed…  I got online and posted some pictures on Vintage Trailer Talk to see if anyone could help me.  I also chatted briefly with a guy who works at RV Masters here in Houston to see if he could help me troubleshoot.  We both agreed it was either a problem with the ground or there was a piece of hot wire touching something.  I went back outside to check all my connections.  I disconnected the light fixture above the bed and then noticed that my ground wires had come loose inside the j-box near that fixture.  I reconnected those and everything worked!  I unplugged the cord again and reconnected the light fixture above the bed.  When I plugged it back in, everything wasn’t working.  ugh  Back to square one!  After at least an hour of messing with it, I realized that one of the hot wires inside the fixture was exposed and was touching the ground wire.  This was causing the whole fixture to be live.  Once I fixed that, everything was working again, yay!

I screwed a light bulb into the fixture above the sink and it worked!

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Then I went back to the troublesome fixture above the bed.  I put it back together and screwed a light bulb into it.  I went back out to plug in the cord, and when I returned it was on!!

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Unfortunately, even though it was working, the stupid fixture and the j-box next to it were electrified when I touched them with my voltage sensor.  ugh.  At this point, I was fed up.  I called the guy from RV Masters, and he said he could come by next week with his electrician to take a look at it.  I can probably fix it, but I’m wasting a lot of precious time on this when I need to be finishing up other items!

I’m so disappointed that I couldn’t get this all working perfectly on my own.  I’m so close I can taste it!  That being said, I really don’t want to hurt myself or my camper.  I’d better leave it to the professionals.

After giving up on the electrical, I finished a few trim pieces around the kitchen window and secured some smaller pieces of countertop that go around the stove.  I also hung some curtains in one of the windows.  I didn’t get pictures of these two things.  I guess I was too annoyed about the electrical work not to mention I was running out of daylight.   I think the curtains are going to look really cute in there!

Here’s the list of everything I still have left to do before the party (in no particular order).  The list looks relatively short, but I know how long it takes me to do things so I’m sure it will take me right up until the party to get these things completed.   I hope I can do it!  I’m starting to feel the pressure..

  • Install mirrors in benches (behind starburst cutout)
  • Secure bed and benches to floor
  • Make cushions for benches
  • Finish painting closet and patch holes
  • Get electrical system working properly (electrician will take care of this!)
  • Install Fantastic Vent
  • Paint tongue and bumper (maybe wheels too if time), also paint propane tank
  • Install Shasta emblem and other little emblems as well as door catch
  • Finish installing vent for AC to go on cabinet face
  • Install baggage door
  • Polish wings and reinstall
  • Seal cracks and staples on exterior with gutter seal
  • Finish hanging curtains and add other decorative items

Tomorrow is a new day and I’m not going to let my electrical system woes get me down.  I will ignore that for now and get busy on the other items.

 

 

Determination

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Determination

I can’t remember what life was like before Junebug.  What did I do with all of my time??  Sure, I had other hobbies, but I didn’t do anything nearly as obsessively as I work on this project.  It’s kind of like trying to imagine my life before the internet or my iPhone. haha  Maybe I was just relaxing more or perhaps watching more movies.  

Both of my neighbors admitted yesterday that they doubted me in the beginning and didn’t think I could do this project on my own.  Little did they know, I am a very determined person, and when I put my mind to something, I will do it no matter what!   One of my neighbors also said that I had done a good job for a girl.  rolleyes  That offended me, and I told him so.  He then backtracked and said he meant that he didn’t think there were many girls who would take on this sort of project.  He might be right, but I’m hoping maybe some other women who aren’t sure about doing something like this will come across my blog and see that they can do it!  All you need is time, money, and a lot of determination. 

This weekend, I got a lot done, but I still didn’t completely finish my electrical system like I had planned.  I had no idea how difficult 12 gauge wiring was going to be to deal with.  I still feel pretty good about where I’m at, although I’ve only got two weekends left until the unveiling party, so I am a little worried about time.  I will probably have to work on a few things during the week just to be sure I finish in time!  Luckily, my next two weekends are three day weekends, so that really helps.

I think I mentioned in my last post that I had lost my keys.  Wouldn’t you know, they were hanging on a nail in the garage the whole time!  I have become so disorganized with this project, this is unlike me!  I now have a little camper key cover on my keys.  Maybe this will help.  If nothing else, it’s cute. smile

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I was off on Friday, so I got up early and started working on finishing the exterior of Junebug to get her ready to take to Oscar’s shop to finish the bumper and spare tire mount.  I had to finish stripping the paint off of the drip rail, and of course, it took forever!  I don’t know how that paint was so stuck on there.

After doing that, I polished the eyebrows and installed them over all of the windows.  

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Before

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After

 Oh, by the way, I’m not going to post any more full exterior or interior pictures until after my unveiling party on September 12th.  I don’t want to ruin the surprise for my friends who will be coming to the party and also read this blog.  For anyone who can’t make it to the party, sorry, but I promise to post lots of pictures after that!  

It took me most of the day on Friday to finish up the exterior, and around 6pm, I started getting Junebug ready to go to Oscar’s shop.  I noticed that my jack had become really hard to turn.  I got the camper out of the driveway and hooked up to my car, but I couldn’t get the jack to go back up so I could get on the road.  Apparently, it had decided to break on me. grr  My nice neighbor came to the rescue, and he helped me remove the jack and put it in my car.  I went on my way to Oscar’s place to see if he could help me with it.  Once I arrived at Oscar’s shop, he immediately got ot work on my bumper with his son and his friend as his assistants.   I got really nervous with the welding so close to my beautiful pre-polished aluminum skin.  That stuff scratches so easily!!  They put a few new scratches in it, but in the end, it turned out fine.  I snapped a couple of photos while they weren’t looking. hehe

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I’ll wait to post a pic of the finished bumper with the spare tire mount.  It still needs to be painted, and I want to wait until after the unveiling to show it off anyway.  

I noticed that my side running lights and license plate light didn’t work properly when plugged into my car.  I was really worried I had wired them wrong, but when Oscar hooked Junebug up to his two vehicles, everything worked great!  

Since it was late on Friday when I took Junebug to Oscar’s place and my jack had quit working, I decided to leave her overnight at his shop and pick her up in the morning.  On Saturday morning, I took my VW to Master Hitch since that’s where I got the wiring installed, and they said everything was working perfectly in it.  ugh  I guess I’m going to have to take my VW and Junebug to Master Hitch because it doesn’t seem like the problem is my camper.  Luckily the most important lights are working, the brakes and blinkers.   I went ahead and bought a new jack while I was at Master Hitch, and Oscar installed it for me.  It only cost $29, so that was a relief.  It works great too!

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I’m planning to paint it when I finish painting the hitch.  I can’t decide if I want to paint it silver or purple.  

On the drive home from Oscar’s shop, I noticed Junebug was swaying a little bit.  She didn’t sway at all before, so I’m wondering if it’s the new bumper and spare tire.  I had to install the spare tire to the side in the rear so it wouldn’t cover up the license plate.  I’m thinking this is messing up the weight distribution.  Hopefully by the time I install the propane tank and fill up Junebug with stuff, it will all even out.

After getting home on Saturday, the first thing I did was install the two holes for the AC.  I wanted to finish wiring the receptacles inside the camper, but I knew it would be way better to do that with the AC on!  

I got my AC from ClimateRight.  It’s an 8200 btu unit that is AC only, no heat.  A little space heater warms up Junebug just fine, so I didn’t need a heater.   This little AC sits outside the camper and connects via two hoses that are actually the hoses you would use for a dryer exhaust.  Their website said to install the two holes for the hoses on the side of the camper, but I thought that would be ugly.  I decided to drill two holes in the floor underneath the kitchen cabinets for my intake and output.  I haven’t finished making it look pretty yet, but it’s working great!  I got this kind because a window unit would look ugly (in my opinion) and Junebug’s frame isn’t strong enough to support a roof unit.  Other people have installed a window unit under the bed and vented it through the baggage door or through the floor, but I didn’t really want to go that route either.  This seemed like the best option for me, and so far, I’m happy with the decision.  It has a little infrared remote control that serves as the thermostat so it knows the temperature inside the camper at all times.  

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I had to buy a hole saw and the attachment to go with it. It cost around $40 for both so it wasn’t cheap!

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One of the holes I had to cut was going to go through the old asbestos tile. I was a little nervous about this, so I wore my mask and kept spraying the floor with water while I was cutting. I then carefully gathered up all of the shavings after I was done.

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The one on the right will be under the fridge when I put it back in its spot. It’s for the output. The one on the left will be the return air vent, which is under the sink.

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Here’s a pic of the one on the right after I drilled the hole and put the attachment in it.

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And both are installed! I added some ductwork to the output and a screen to the return to keep particles out. The ductwork is a little too long since I will be putting a piece of wood back in the space below the fridge. I am still trying to decide how to cover the space and have a vent. None of the vents at Lowe’s were exactly what I was looking for.

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Here’s the unit hooked up outside. I am going to find a base for it with little wheels. I also need a way to secure it to the hitch so someone doesn’t steal it from the campground. I will worry about those things a little later.

Once I got the AC hooked up, I got to work on the electrical.  Unfortunately, it was late in the day, so I didn’t really get anywhere.  I made more progress today. 

I ended up deciding to replace both the fixture and the fixture box above the dinette.  I didn’t like the idea of having the plug on the fixture itself like the original, it didn’t seem as safe.  The wires in the original fixture were old too.  The only thing I don’t like about the new fixture box is that it’s blue, and you can see the top of it when standing over by the kitchenette.  I may go back and replace it with a different one later, I don’t know. I also had to add a j-box between the outlet and the fixture above the dinette and pigtail the wires from the outlet.  It was too difficult to get two sets of 12 gauge wire into the little outlet box because it’s so thick.  I also had so much trouble accessing the boxes in this space because the ceiling is curved.  

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Before connecting the wires inside the j-box. The old fixture box is still here.

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With new j-box and wires all connected and stapled down. I really hope this works when I hook it up to power!

The 12 gauge wire was so difficult to work with!!  It took me forever to hook up each receptacle thanks to the 12 gauge wire.

After finishing the dinette, I installed the outlet under the sink for the fridge.  It was an easier one because I only had one set of wires connected to it since it was the end of the circuit.  

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I then moved over to the closet.  I wanted to add an outlet here for general use, but also because I ran the 12v wires from the Fantastic Vent over to this area.  I bought a voltage converter and a plug so that I can plug the Fantastic Vent into a normal outlet(it comes in 12v only).  Later down the road, I plan to upgrade my system to include a battery so that I can have electricity off grid.  That’s too much to take on right now though, so I’m just hooking up the fan this way for now.

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I bought some fancy new wire cutters, specifically made for stripping 12 and 10 gauge wire. They really made my life a lot easier.

 

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Here’s the closet receptacle. I bought a double outlet box so I would have room for the wires to the side. I put a cover over this so you can only see the outlet now.  I will also be painting the box and area around it purple.

And the pictures below are the fixtures all hooked up again!  

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I also installed an outdoor plug underneath the camper to plug my AC into.  It has its own dedicated circuit (15 amps).  It only draws 7.2 amps, but I wanted to be on the safe side and let it have its own.  I accidentally picked a spot for the outdoor plug that was too tight initially, so I had to move it, and in doing so, I exposed some of the wire (rated for interior wiring only).  I may need to go back and redo it later.  I’m going to leave it for now because I have so many other things I need to finish first.

The pictures below are the underside of the camper.  On the left, you can see the outdoor plug I installed.  Above that is the air vent for the AC.  It didn’t come with a cap, and I really needed one, so I was excited to find this adjustable cap at Lowe’s.  It expands when you turn the wing nut so that it fits snug inside the opening.  I bought two of these to cover the holes where the AC hoses connect when it’s not in use.  They worked perfectly for this task!

 

 

 

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All that’s left of the electrical system is the power inlet and the breaker box with corresponding wiring.  I also need to run a new ground wire.  I ran the old one and bolted it to the frame, but it’s a really high gauge and won’t work for my new system.  I bought a piece of 8 gauge wire to use for the new ground wire, so I’m going to have to fish it down to the frame, hopefully using the old piece.  If that doesn’t work, I may just drill a hole through the floor and run it to the frame that way. I hate to drill more holes in the floor though, I think I may have reached my quota! 

Hopefully I’ll have some time during the week to finish installing the breaker box and inlet, otherwise I will start out next weekend a little behind schedule.  We’ll see how it goes!   Two weeks to go until I need to be finished…deep breaths….