Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Storage, Paint, Reflectors, Rubber Protectors, Gaskets

I've been busy finishing a number of the projects that got started but were never finished, prior to our trip to Utah and in the process I've added a few new ones. All of these items address our on-going requirement to 'build' a travel vehicle that is comfortable and convenient on the inside for LIVING ... and also bulletproof, sturdy and comfortable to TRAVEL in. We also need to rely on the vehicle's durability and reliability under potentially adverse driving conditions.

Remember, this is the back of a pickup truck and we will be living here for extended periods of time. Of interest, we have approximately 134 sqft of liveable space in the Lance 855s Camper ... I believe that qualifies us for living in a small, environmentally friendly footprint and places us in the catagory of a 'Really - REALLY Tiny House'.




INTERIOR CONVENIENCE & STORAGE


1. All the small trim pieces and shelves that I built for the campers interior last Fall, received several top coats of tung oil. Important safety and emergency items will now be stored conveniently at the camper's entry door ... a first aid kit, a fire extinguisher, a flashlight, any spare keys.


EXTERIOR STORAGE


1. I installed a pvc storage tube for fishing poles or alternately, other long items like awning cranks, extension poles for washing etc. The tube was sanded, primed and painted to match truck and camper graphics. A hasp and lock have been secured to the cap.




2. I relocated a few items. The fresh water supply hose and the electrical service cord are now stored in the truck bed along the drivers side between the wheel well and camper body. The water hose is tethered to the rear qwik load anchor point and the electrical cord is tethered in the propane bottle storage compartment.


I have secured a small packsack inside the propane storage compartment for extra water filters,  cleaning towels and rags, hose adaptors, teflon tape, electrical adaptors etc.




The jack post pads are now tethered at the passenger side qwik load anchor point and are stored at the rear of the truck bed for easy access.


By moving these items, I now have room for small tools, liquids, supplies and hardware in the rear wall storage compartment that housed them. Lance intended this to be a compartment for carrying an on-board generator.





EXTERIOR BODY & EQUIPMENT PROTECTION


1. I had a colour match made to the Ford's paint colour at our neighbourhood Napa dealer in spray form and then took that to my local paint shop. It's difficult to get a perfect paint match to metallic auto paint, but it's not bad. The tone is quite close to some of the vinyl graphics on the camper. They also supplied me with a primer to cover all material (aluminum, fiber-glass, vinyl, wood, plastics, steel). I've painted the aluminum boat accessories box, the pvc fishing pole tube, roof front canoe bar and the front jack posts so far.




2. Prepped the rear bumper and step and painted with black rockerguard and added some reflective tape for improved safety.




3. The (4) Happi-jac qwik loads have been sleeved with rubber (bicycle inner tubes) to protect them from the elements. Parts of these were assembled using galvinized components that do not weather well and are prone to rusting and oxidation.





EQUIPMENT & GEAR


1. Loading the Camper: I've installed a laser level in the centre of the cab truck near the windshield bottom. The laser beam will line up to a vertical mark on the centre of the camper front wall and should make loading much easier.





IMPROVEMENTS


1. Installed a camper door threshold sweep and squared the door to the frame. The door needed encouragement to close properly and there was a 1/2 inch gap from door to frame threshold ... good place for cold air and biting insects to enter.


2. The 'camper to truck cab' escape window seemed to be missing a gasket. The window moved freely in the frame and didn't clasp securely. It also allowed heat to escape and biting insects to enter. A gasket helped tremendously.

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