Monday, August 22, 2016

My new Project: Chapter Two -- It's Probably Worse than you Thought

I wasn't far into this adventure before I realized that it might have been easier to start from scratch.  But, In for a penny in for a pound, so we carry on.  The plywood sides of the teardrop were rotten so those had to be removed and i figured I could do that without removing the roof.  Good idea but probably more work than it was worth because I had to prop up the roof and remove the aluminum skin.  that showed a lot of rot in the hardboard inner skin so most of that had to go too.

The partitions had to be removed and added to the pile of rotten things to be replaced.  Soon, I realized that the oak flooring had absorbed water, swelled, and was adding weight to the trailer.  It still looked nice but it wouldn't show under the mattress any way so it had to go too.  Suddenly I had more trash and less trailer.

The sides were just barely stable enough to be a pattern for the new 3/4 inch plywood sides.  Then those sides were patterns for the hardboard lining.  These were glue together and the inside painted.   Luckily I had the warm dry garage to do that while I dismantled the trailer in the boat shed.  Great activity for a rainy August.  The side of the trailer also received strips of 1x1 fir to attached the partitions and shelves  (When completed the trailer will have plywood bulkheads separating the galley trunk and the bunk).

I was excited that the fiberglass fenders were in good shape, but the taillights would need replacing.  The ceiling fan, I tested and found it operable.  I then confronted the reality that the rear hatch was to rotten to save, so I peeled off the aluminum skin and discarded the waterlogged and rotten trunk lid frame and puzzled on how to build a new, lighter one.

The exciting part was that I was reaching the point of putting things together rather than taking them apart!   Could it be?

After lots of cleaning and scrapping and removing screws nuts and staples, I was able to apply a layer of epoxy resin to what was left of the trailer wood structure and begin to do the same to the new plywood parts.  I figured the best way to prevent the rot that got the trailer the first time is seal the plywood with epoxy resin like I was building a boat.  This is when damp, cool weather was not my friend.  The resin is a slow cure during a soggy August.
In spite of the weather, one day I attached the new sides of the trailer connected the ribs that supported the roof and the reborn trailer began to show it's new life.

The hatch was a different story!

Stay Tuned For More!

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