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Old 06-25-2013, 09:00 AM   #11
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Re: The Good Ship Anne Marie

The walls and ceiling panels are down! This is very exciting, things are happening fast. The method we found fastest was cutting an 'X' shaped notch in the center of the rivets with a cutting wheel on the angle grinder, then using a cold chisel and a hammer to pop the rest off. If you're looking to use this method, we found that you can save a little time by only making one cut on the rivets attached to the bus ribs (the vertical line of rivets in the picture below). The horizontal lines, which are just connecting two pieces of sheet metal, definitely need two cuts in an X, but you can get away with only one on ribs. This matters a lot, since all on the ceiling rivets are on ribs, and it reduces the amount of time you're cutting above your head by half.



Chiseling is slow, hard work, and I don't have all that much in the way of advice to give. Make sure you're wearing gloves, and remember to hit the chisel, not your finger.



We started from the back to the front, since each piece of sheet metal overlapped the next. Once we got one, we were able to get the next, and so on.



I'm glad we did this. Though most of the ceiling insulation is in good shape and will likely be reused, the walls were not so good. This also gives me a chance to better seal some outside panels. I did find a mouse nest in the insulation in one wall panel, but forgot to take a picture yesterday. I'll grab one today.



Today we begin on the bottom-most panel, whose rivets seem easy so far. Does anyone know whether it is welded to the floor at any point? We can't tell yet, and are hoping its just the rivets.

Also in the near future, we're hoping to get a coat of Bus Kote on the roof, and get the framing up for a roof deck. I've been looking through design after design, and haven't yet settled on one.
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Old 06-25-2013, 09:23 AM   #12
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Re: The Good Ship Anne Marie

Oh, and I guess this is probably a good point to mention what we're planning on doing, design wise. I have blueprints, but they're just on graph paper as I haven't taken the time to learn SketchUp. So no fancy renderings. This is the bus we're styling ours after - lots of wood, open floor plan, woodstove for heat. There are more pictures at the link.


http://wpicreative.com/bus-for-sale/, Current owner's blog

We're looking to throw a fairly large solar array on the roof with the deck. We'll use a composting toilet, Tumbleweed ofuro-style tub, and propane cooktop.

Just painting with broad strokes for the moment, to share the direction this is going.
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Old 06-25-2013, 11:13 AM   #13
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Re: The Good Ship Anne Marie

Absolutely love the layout of the bus you are designing yours after. Nice work so far, also! That grease looks like nasty stuff.
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Old 06-25-2013, 11:23 AM   #14
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Re: The Good Ship Anne Marie

Great progress, I see that you have help.

I hope to start next Wendsday, if I win the auction on the 1st. I keep asking my dog Durango if he will help, but he just rolls his eyes and holds out his paw to show no opposable thumbs.

I too will be removing all the sheet metal and insulation. I will follow The Camel Conversion Project and do spray foam.
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Old 06-26-2013, 07:55 PM   #15
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Re: The Good Ship Anne Marie

Nice work guys!

If you still have those sneakers, throw them in a bucket with a bunch of baking soda, vinegar, Dawn dish soap and water and let them soak (maybe over night). a good scrub and rinse and you can probably wear them again.

Thanks for posting your progress!


@wmkbailey - keeping fingers crossed for you!
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Old 06-28-2013, 03:24 PM   #16
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Re: The Good Ship Anne Marie

@wmkbailey: I also wish you the best of luck! I love the look of finished spray foam insulation and the piece of mind it must bring, but I'm putting my resources elsewhere. The stove I have is rated to heat larger spaces than mine (though I've seen it installed in smaller RVs/boats as well), so I think I'll be fine.

I'm focusing on the deck at the moment, since I want to have that wrapped up before I begin going wild with the ceiling or anything else. The weather is really not on my side though, the current central Connecticut forecast is not bus friendly:


The point is, I've got time to plan. I've been trying to figure out a method of construction that will fit both my aesthetic/functional desires, and also my budget and skills. Unfortunately, I don't know how to weld (yet!), and paying someone else to weld a deck frame for me seems costly and problematic. The Kee Klamp method of install is beautiful, but out my my budget. This floating metal frame is also fantastic looking, but out of my skillset/budget. I'm leaning towards wooden construction. This roof deck is within my skills and budget range, but I'm not a fan of the wooden supports coming down between the windows.

Is is possible to get the best of all worlds?

Is there any reason I can't build a wooden deck, similar to the floating metal frame above, with 4x4s acting as the feet? Instead of bolting 2x4s to the ribs at the windows, why not run lag screws through the ribs at the roof? It would look closers to the angled support on the Kee Klamp install, except with a vertical length of 4x4 cut and sanded to be flush with the angle of the roof. The joist would cantilever a foot or so off the 4x4, and would make for a fairly simple and strong installation.

I haven't seen a deck constructed like this, is there any reason why? Any obvious flaws?
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Old 06-28-2013, 04:09 PM   #17
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Re: The Good Ship Anne Marie

You are in Yankee-land man..... the land where bartering is respected and loved! On Hartford CL there is a couple welders looking to trade work for ?? give them a call...post an ad on CL with a pic of what you want and see if you get any help there. Also see if there is a Freecyle group in your area. ReStore is another good place for stuff. Go make nice with your local metal scrappers... see if you can pay them for railings and such, some will gladly take the added cash.

You have a large vehicle that can help people move or acquire large items...use that as a trading tool. Again post an ad on CL offering this service. You are only limited by the creativity of your methods NOT by your skill set and budget. THIS IS SKOOLIES!! (I will forego the well-kick this time, but you get the message)

I am quite sure you could build the whole bus without any cash transactions if you were so inclined. Take a read through the DirtyBus build... I haven't kept notes but I don't think he is much more than $500 in (he welds though, good skill to have it seems) but you can do it too!
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Old 06-28-2013, 04:47 PM   #18
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Re: The Good Ship Anne Marie

You're totally right, and that's exactly how I did things the first time around. I have two reasons for not trying that this time around:

1) Time limit. Bus work for me has always been a trade off of time and money. You can save massive amounts of money if you have no time limit. Spending the cash makes things move quicker. I do have a time limit for the deck, though not for everything on the bus. I need the deck to be complete before July 14th.

2) Learning experience/pride. I mentioned that I don't know how to weld yet - I intend to learn. I've never made anything like this, and I want to try to do it myself and learn firsthand. There isn't any aspect of the bus that couldn't be done better by someone else, but I want to learn how to do it and know how it's done.
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Old 06-28-2013, 05:11 PM   #19
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Re: The Good Ship Anne Marie

However you build the deck, drilling holes in your roof is just asking for trouble in terms of leaks.
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Old 06-28-2013, 09:15 PM   #20
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Re: The Good Ship Anne Marie

Quote:
Originally Posted by somjuan
Chiseling is slow, hard work, and I don't have all that much in the way of advice to give. Make sure you're wearing gloves, and remember to hit the chisel, not your finger.
I guess it's not much help at this point to mention that Harbor Freight sells an air chisel for $15... I think I'll buy one for every friend I can persuade to come help pop rivets when I strip the interior sheet metal off my bus!
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