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Old 07-29-2012, 05:08 PM   #281
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Re: 2012... The Year of Renewal

Are you sure your Satuday list was long enough

Totally get the re-working of the cabinets. Did the same thing in my bedroom area once I thought it was already "done"
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Old 07-29-2012, 10:10 PM   #282
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Re: 2012... The Year of Renewal

The water tank I noticed in the back across from your murphy bed looks like the polyethylene tanks I've seen at Tractor Supply:

http://www.tractorsupply.com/leg-sty...5-gal--2137324

I went to the store to measure the size and said I wanted it for drinking water, and they advised against that (despite it saying it can store water), saying it's better to go with the black tanks (which are more UFO-like and much too big) which say "safe for drinking water":

http://www.tractorsupply.com/water-s...0-gal--2126933

Only problem is that the black ones are only available in NY, TX, and CA. Somehow government regulations prevent other stores in other states from stocking them. The black tanks are also polyethelene, and so I'm not sure what's different other than the black color. The only thing the guy at the store could say is that the white ones will accumulate mildew.

I think the problem involves direct exposure to sunlight, but I could be wrong. I've also read that fresh water tanks (being plastic) leech a smell/taste and also get mildewy and need to be flushed and cleaned a few times a year anyway, and is pretty common in RV's in general. So I'm wondering if that was something you either are prepared for or are not worried about?

I guess I'm wondering from others is if using the metal (blue) pressurized tanks instead (versus non-pressurized tanks plus an on-demand pump) will make the problem irrelevent (never needing cleaning)? Maybe the pressure makes it inhospitable for any mold/mildew. I'm totally unaware of that kind of prevention maintenance in conventional homes:

http://www.tractorsupply.com/countyl...pacity-3123336
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Old 07-29-2012, 10:36 PM   #283
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Re: 2012... The Year of Renewal

As for being broke, I am working with a really fixed budget and am trying to get SOMETHING ready to be registered. I am taking somewhat of the approach that I should do the absolute minimum necessary to get it 'converted' and to scrounge for junk around my house, in thrift stores, taking parts off a junk camper, building salvage stores (ie Habitat for Humanity ReStore, etc), junkyards, etc to get the cheapest deal. I dunno if things will look 'nice', but I'll have time 6 months, 12 months, etc down the line to deal with that and at least I'll have something on the road. I'm also trying to keep things 'modular', ie strapped down safely but also in a way that can be unbolted and moved around if need be. At least I can do projects over time as I earn the money, and still enjoy and use the thing in the meantime.

Some of the good finds I've made by going second hand (or DIY/creative-minded):

1) A nice big/deep stainless steel sink and countertop for $75 from an architectural salvage shop (most major cities have them).
2) A propane stove/oven plus microwave and drawers for $150 (from a junk camper sitting behind an RV shop).
3) More solid hardwood counter top and table top than I need from Habitat For Humanity, originally from a Red Lobster, for $25.
4) Window screens made using 1/2" lath strips, double layered with the screen in the middle and the lath overlapping at the corners, with 1/2 inch staples to adhere the frame securely - with 10 windows worth for maybe $30. Compare that to $100+ if I went to Lowe's to buy the aluminum screen kits (where the corner pieces are the most expensive part at $4 per window). I haven't done it yet, so I have some experimenting to do.

In the long run I also have my intelligence and creative use of everyday/scrap materials, etc to help me get little things taken care of. Or cutting a deal with someone who has parts (maybe even an RV dealer who has), by doing the scrapping/removal yourself. The guy I got the stove from said he otherwise didn't have anything used but I could have it cheaply if I just did the work myself since it wasn't worth his time.

As per using one's noggin, I thought the use of gate latches for the murphy bed was ingenious.

It happens to be a lot less stress than worrying about money, trying to get everything 'perfect'. For me, there's a point of being 'good enough'. I have an at-home (er, on-the-road?) business I have yet to launch and also the responsibility of 3 young kids as a single parent when their mom is often busy and not able to help much financially. I don't have much time to do all this. So I see some of these professional conversions and I think that's not for me, not in my circumstances. It also means getting my hands dirty a bit, making some mistakes, and learning along the way, ie with welding, trying to save/revive dead batteries for a solar storage system, etc. I'm not exactly a 'doomsday prepper' but I'd like to believe that in uncertain economic times, those who learn how to utilize everyday and junk items that others ignore will be the ones who end up surviving and thriving in the end. The more you use your intelligence, hands-on skills, ability to learn (YouTube is amazing), and the willingness to repair or scrounge used or broken items, the easier things will be and the further you'll get with what you've got. We live in a time where we depend so much upon money that we limit our abilities and opportunities to the money we have or don't have. If/when we don't have it, we feel deprived, helpless, limited, etc. But if we use our intelligence, skills, etc, those circumstances of having limited money can reap more value and potentially be largely irrelevent. Life feels different when you are creative like that. Resources are more abundant and readily available if we just give them some TLC.

But that's just my philosophy, mostly because of the challenging circumstances I've been put into, and I totally understand if most people can't quite relate.
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Old 07-31-2012, 11:30 PM   #284
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Re: 2012... The Year of Renewal

Quote:
Originally Posted by tomas_maly
The water tank I noticed in the back across from your murphy bed looks like the polyethylene tanks I've seen at Tractor Supply...
Yep. It's from Tractor Supply. I do believe the lighter colored tanks may have problems with algae growth, but am not really worried about that for a couple of reasons.
1) I'm not using this for true "potable water" source. Any water I put in the tank will be for washing (clothes, dishes, me, the dog, etc...)
2) I'll be adding bleach to the tank at each refill to help prevent algae growth and to kill other nasty bio-hazards
3) Unlike most RV potable water tanks, this tank has an excellent opening that I can get my entire arm into. If it needs scrubbing, I can do it with little problem.

As for the broke philosophy... yep. I completely agree. Most of what I have left to do is the 'big stuff' that I'm trying to do 'small'. If everything goes south and I run out of time before I have to leave, my power will be an extension cord out the window and my plumbing will be the tank mentioned above and a bucket carried to the dump station (or bathroom if it's just dish water).

Hopefully, I'll be able to finish everything though. I am waiting for the tailpipe pieces to come in so I can move the exhaust, which will make room for the black tank to be hung. Then it's just a matter of running the plumbing (most of which I already have). After that, I can climb back onto the roof and install the solar panels. The last BIG ticket things I have to buy are batteries and an inverter. I'll have that next paycheck. Everything else is luxury I'll happily do without. "Good enough" really is good enough for this trip.

But what I really hoped for was extra money to have to enjoy the little side things along the trip. Like that really cool doo-dadd that would make the perfect gift for my Mom or Dad, or maybe ice cream treats after a long day on the road, etc... I'll probably still do some things that I really can't afford, but the calculations of how long it will take to repay that spending spree will be in the back of my mind, spoiling some of the 'fun'. But I'll only do this kind of trip once. Might as well enjoy what I can while I can.
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Old 07-31-2012, 11:49 PM   #285
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Re: 2012... The Year of Renewal

Enjoy your journey. It will give you a lifetime of memories. As long as you have a steady job, you will be able to pay off the cost of the trip.
Go have fun.
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Old 08-01-2012, 08:15 AM   #286
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Re: 2012... The Year of Renewal

Ice cream is very important, one of the major food groups .
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Old 08-05-2012, 07:31 AM   #287
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Re: 2012... The Year of Renewal

Got the roof painted with SolarFlex yesterday, then worked 'til midnight moving the exhaust pipe.
Today is tank time!
Whenever I finally wake up.
And get rid of my headache.
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Old 08-05-2012, 09:01 PM   #288
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Re: 2012... The Year of Renewal

Slept in until 8 this morning. Boy did I need that!
Didn't really get moving until 11 or so, which made me feel only a tiny bit guilty.
Pulled out the crane I got from Northern Tool and test fitted everything together. Looks like it will do what I need, which is a big relief!

Met Mom & Dave for lunch, spent some more money, then headed over to Dave's house to test fit the tank.
It fits in the space just perfect. It may need to hang lower than the edge of the bus skirting, but it will still be higher than the storage compartment on the passenger's side.
We discussed several methods of supporting the tank. It's built to be held up with 2" angle iron, which is great on a travel trailer, but awkward under the bus.
Dave & his brother welded together a couple pieces of angle iron and we were ready to test fit again when we realized the threaded rod we were going to use was too big and we couldn't find any nuts to fit it.
Mom & I left for the Lowes... but it was too late. They closed early because it was Sunday.
Damn.
So, no tank installation yet. We're so close! This week! It will be done this week.
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Old 08-05-2012, 10:32 PM   #289
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Re: 2012... The Year of Renewal

What is "the crane" for???....me likey .....in a "grunt-n" kinda way
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Old 08-05-2012, 11:19 PM   #290
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Re: 2012... The Year of Renewal

I thought TC said it was for lifting the 500 pound sacks of kitty litter----
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