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Old 05-07-2005, 11:02 AM   #31
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That would suck. I hope your luck changes. Was it the landlord or a neighbor?
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Old 05-08-2005, 02:58 PM   #32
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Camping Out

Boy, it was great to fall asleep to Whippoorwills Friday night at the park. I've had to move the bus twice within the campground due to site availability, but now I'm settled for a week at one site. I really can't do much work on the bus at the site, but I can do some quiet things like plumbing and finishing up the gas piping, which I completed all the way up to about two connections from the stove. I can also get the vinyl siding F-channel installed for the sliding doors on the hanging lockers and cabinets. I'm going to cut some other cabinetry trim pieces (facing boards) here at the house, pre-drill them, and install them very quietly with screws at the campground. I REALLY don't want to have any trouble at the campground, so I'm definitely not going to be making a bunch of construction noise. Fortunately I have a little hand-held brace that will allow me to do some minor drilling for the screws without making any noise at all.

We got all the wiring run late last week. There are only 3 12V circuits, and they are all 8 gauge stranded wire. Two are on the same side of the bus that will carry the house batteries, one runs under the bus through my 1 1/2" gray PVC wire conduit to the water pump. I ran both positive and negative cables, and I did not ground the negative to the frame. I want to maintain complete separation between my house batteries and the engine electrical system. That way I don't have to worry about isolaters or disconnect switches or anything like that. Eventually, I plan on being entirely solar powered for 12V, and until then, I plan on being attached to shore power. Eventually I will probably run a circuit that would allow me to connect the two systems, but I'm just not ready for that yet. When I do, however, it will probably have to be 4 gauge wire, given the distance between the house and engine batteries (about 25 feet, all told).

The 120V circuits are run, and all sockets hooked up. I just have to tighten the wires down and then connect them in the electrical box. I'm using a multimeter to double check everything that I'm doing, and plan to test the system by turning all the circuits off at their breakers, and then turning each one on individually to test the wiring. I don't anticipate any trouble, as it is pretty simple wiring, and there are only 6 circuits: forward lighting and forward receptacles (separate circuits) on each side, and one combination lighting and receptacle circuit on each side in the rear.

I did get 3 cheap ($ single tube 20 watt (or was it 25?) flourescent fixtures hard wired into the bus. One is centered on the left side of the living area (forward part of bus), one is centered over the dinette on the right side of the bus, and one is located under the kitchen shelf, just above and directly between the sink and stove. I got two 8 watt units that have an auxiliary socket on them for the bathrooms, but those haven't been installed yet. They are not going to be hardwired into the system, but instead are going to be plugged into the rear sockets on each side. One will be in the head area, and one will be over the washstand.

I'm having trouble finding a weatherproof cover to fit the weatherproof box that I installed for the external outlet box at the rear of the bus. All of the circuits are GFCI protected. I installed a 50 amp plug on my 25 foot 6 gauge umbilical cord, so of course the park has 30 amp service. Now I need to make a 30 amp to 50 amp adapter to use. It will be a short board with a 30 amp plug that is wired to a 50 amp socket. Another $20 I need to spend....

One of the last things that I did on Friday was to create a propane tank carrier underneath the bus. It's a plywood box about 24" by 19" that is hung from the frame members with 3/8" allthread and perforated flat steel straps about 3/32" thick. I may just be able to squeeze two 20# propane tanks in it. One fits with no problem. It is painted flat black, and you hardly notice it when looking at the bus, unless you are examining the bus fairly closely. It is located a few feet back from the differential and just in front of a cross frame member. I chose what I thought would be the most protected place under the bus for carrying a propane tank. Nothing is going to come through the differential and hit it, that's for sure! The tires could throw something up to hit it, but they're more likely to throw things in a different direction. The box is 1" thick plywood on the bottom, and 3/4" thick plywood on the sides, so it should be able withstand any road trash enough to protect the tanks inside. I still have 15" clearance beneath it, and I'd have to bottom out the rear bumper on an incline before I bottomed out the box.

I have a 45 day temporary plate on the vehicle. The clock started ticking on that on the day of vehicle purchase (not day of plate issue), so I have about 6 days left to get a permanent plate. In order to get the title changed, I have to submit pictures of the work, receipts, etc., so I have to at least have it looking complete in a couple of days, even if not everything is hooked up completely. As long as the pictures document that it is, in fact, a motorhome, and not a school bus any more, the DMV will be satisfied enough to issue a motorhome title.

One thing that I love about this bus: the engine cranks easily on the first try. I left the engine kill switch pulled once when I tried to crank it, and it wouldn't start. I was scared to death. I tried cranking it about 3 times before I realized that the kill switch was pulled. When I pushed that in, it fired right up. Boy, did I get a feeling of relief!

Well, I'll see if I can get the pictures posted. Then off to the Home Depot!
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Old 05-09-2005, 12:03 PM   #33
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General Post

I'm not sure who called the police. It wasn't the landlord, because he was in Toledo, OH. The argument (full blown shouting match) was with my wife. Soon to be ex-wife (that was already in the works, not a result of the argument). It was my fault I got arrested. I need to learn to keep my mouth shut better. Oh, well. Soon I'll be a convicted miscreant, so watch out, because "I have a death sentence in seven systems".

If anyone out there has a cellphone with a daytimer, camera, messaging, etc., I recommend the BitPim ( http://www.bitpim.org ) program. You have to get a $20 USB cable from Radio Shack to hook up the phone to the computer. The cable is sold "for use with XYZ (can't remember name)" commercial program that costs about $20.00, and is also for sale at Radio Shack, but you don't have to buy that program. BitPim is FREEWARE, and it does all the data management and downloading stuff that the $20.00 program does. Just get the USB cable that fits your phone, and it will work fine. I'm taking all my pictures with my cellphone. (They ain't great quality, but they work adequately for my purposes).

I am posting some pictures today from the last few days.
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Old 05-10-2005, 12:09 AM   #34
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See if your attorney can get a deferred prosecution agreement.
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Old 05-10-2005, 08:38 AM   #35
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Options

Thanks, I'm looking into something like that. "Noll prosse", I think is the term they use here. I am my own attorney, so we'll see...
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Old 05-10-2005, 02:00 PM   #36
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Dude, that f-ing blows. I almost had the same thing happen when my GF lived in a double and the bitch downstairs was talking **** about how we where loud when really they where the loud ones who smoked up every damn night. I was yelling and she tried to slam her door and call the cops, and i stepped in so she couldnt shut it and kept yelling at her. hahaha, I just got a warning by the cops. and we moved out the next week. God damn potheads.

Anyway, that really sucks and i feel for ya. As for the bus, looking and sounding good. Keep up the good work and dedication.

Oh ya, and if you want your LL to "get a flat tire" next time hes in Toledo... Let me know;)
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Old 05-10-2005, 09:57 PM   #37
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Originally Posted by dammitAndy
Anyway, that really sucks and i feel for ya. As for the bus, looking and sounding good. Keep up the good work and dedication.
DITTO!

Quote:
Originally Posted by dammitAndy
Oh ya, and if you want your LL to "get a flat tire" next time hes in Toledo... Let me know;)
Again, I say DITTO (if in Greenville, NC area), but remember. . . slashing can get ya time in the penalty box, but 4 valve stem cores on the driver side window ledge above the door handle can be the difference between malicious mischief and a practical joke played on a jerk.
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Old 05-12-2005, 10:41 AM   #38
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Squeaking by...

Well, I just got out of court. The judge let me sign up for the Pre-Trial Intervention program, which is a relief. That beats a conviction and a record. Jeez, what a mess. I just can't wait to get it all over with. Anyway...

It's difficult working on the bus from a remote location. I can't do noisy work at the park. I've been shuttling bits of cabinetry back and forth between my wife's house and the park to get them sanded, stained, painted, etc., and that's marginally do-able. I found out last night that the stove's gas fitting was blocked by part of the counter subsurface, so I had to pull that board and bring it home to cut an access hole in it. The gas is almost completely installed, though, and once that board is cut I can plumb the final connection between the LP tank and the stove. Yipee! Then I will be able to make coffee!

Be careful when you buy plywood. I have discovered that not all of the 3/4" sheets of sheathing I bought are 3/4" thick. Some of them are 5/8" thick. They say 3/4" on the mill stamp, and they were in the 3/4" stack of lumber, but they are exactly 5/8" thick. This has left me with a 1/8" difference in height between some of the flooring sheets. I am in the process of applying wood filler to the joints in an effort to make them even enough to lay vinyl tile. I reckon it'll come out okay, but even if no one else notices, I'll know the deficiency is there.

Major projects left:

measure and run plumbing for bath (still haven't figured out a holding tank -- 6" PVC pipe and necessary fittings may be the final choice, but it's not extremely cost effective: I'm hoping to get a 30 gallon industrial barrel for free);

line bucket and barrel with fiberglass for sink and shower purposes;

install (design and create, really) composting toilet system;

lay vinyl tile;

tile kitchen countertop;

build some kind of panels with 3/4" insulation board behind them to cover wall sections above wiring chase (alternative to in-wall insulation);

build a kitchen table convertable into a bed;

install some additional shelving in one hanging locker;

partition kitchen shelf (which turns out to be of limited utility -- useful, but height limited);

install some kind of wall treatment on bathroom walls -- still planning on using weathered pallet boards for the outhouse look;

build a combination bookshelf and desk.

I think that's about it for the immediate future.

Well, I have to go check in with my bail bondsman and enroll in the PTI program...


...but that beats sitting in a cell at the detention center!
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Old 05-12-2005, 03:11 PM   #39
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Re: Squeaking by...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Eric von Kleist
It's difficult working on the bus from a remote location. I can't do noisy work at the park. I've been shuttling bits of cabinetry back and forth between my wife's house and the park to get them sanded, stained, painted, etc., and that's marginally do-able.
I know I'm not in a time crunch like you are, but I am 2 hrs away from my bus and only get to work on it on the weekends. It sucks! I do all my planning and research and reading this forum during the week. Then try to execute on the weekends. I just wish I could do some work in the evenings where I live, but I dont have the tools or air lines, or indoor facility to hide from the ghetto people that break into everything.

But at least I'm doing something constructive on the weekends instead of sleeping in and hanging out at the bars
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Old 05-13-2005, 05:46 PM   #40
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It's legal! :D

Woo-hoo! It's legal! I just got back from SCDMV, paid the $164.00 in fees, and had EVERYTHING they wanted. Should get the title in the mail in a few days. Got the tags and registration today.



Good thing, too, as the temporary tags expire on Sunday!

Okay, enough celebrating. Back to work!
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