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Old 08-23-2011, 06:39 PM   #1
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The Twinkie Files

Hiya!

After loads of research, tentative scrounging and a fair amount of philosophizing, work on the Crown has begun in earnest. I'll post specs & pics as soon as possible and give you her history etc. My intent is to do the build-out in stages so I'll try to label them logically.

The Build Out Has Begun: Phase Zero - Scoring Materials
I've decided to 'freecycle' as many materials as possible - not a hard decision since I have a lot more time than money. Philosophically, I love the idea of diverting perfectly good materials from the landfill. The things people throw away!
I'll probably regret publicly declaring my plan to score free/bargain basement materials but you can wait until later to laugh at me

Philosophically, I am by nature a planner. An over-planner, in fact. I've decided to make this build-out an exercise in flexibility and spontaneity. I have an overall look I'd like to achieve (more ship-like than RV-like, in my mind's eye) and I won't skimp on key items (alcohol galley stove "with a small leak?" uh, no thanks!!) but beyond that, I'm going to go with the flow and improvise. In fact, I'm considering naming the old gal "Necessity" since she will no doubt be the mother of many an invention....

I'm pretty excited about the possibilities. I've been scouting materials for several weeks, at yard sales, craigslist, the salvage yard, the re-store (non-profit sells donated building materials) and the freecycle boards. It looks like insulation, floor underlayer, adhesives, rubber weatherstripping, vinyl and carpet tiles, shutters, mini-blinds, and louvered doors are abundant.

Some places won't hold anything for one minute and of course private parties will sell to the first cash buyer as they should, so timing is everything. I missed a set of 6 employee lockers in a steel frame (for $10) because I couldn't drive the darn thing home in car AND 7.5 gallons of the elastometric roof sealant Lorna recommended for $50 (compares to about $150 retail) because someone beat me to it.

On my first buying trip over the weekend, I spent $90 and scored
> a brand new 4' molded vanity countertop with sink & back splash (with a FLAT counter so I can fix a cutting board to half of it for galley use; no plumbing but that's fine since I plan to use a foot-operated manual water system they make for boats)
> 15 sq feet of new bamboo flooring
> 2 barely used craftsman steel tool cabinets ala sears with drawers that latch and lock shut; these will be the galley base cabinets
> an all-wood cabinet with brass corner plates and doors that latch shut; this will be the 'power center; the bottom heavy duty pull-out shelf with steel drawer rails is big enough for a marine battery, cabinet is backless so venting and wiring out of it will be easy, the top heavy duty fixed shelf *might" fit a household battery recharger or an inverter (converter? - no don't tell me yet! I have a contractor who is going to help with that part later!)
> 8 antique glass knobs and 16 new brushed nickel hinges for upper galley cabinets (distant future)
> one 18" x 10' x 1.5" solid redwood board unfinished, hand-planed (this will be the table-top and the cutting board)
> one 4' x 2' aluminum mesh panel (possibly for vented back of power center)
> a case of new cedar closet paneling (usage tbd - might line a bit of ceiling or berth interior wall)
> one 4' x 6' x 1/2" flexible foam insulation panel for ceiling (more to come!)
> one 4' x 8' panel 3/4" interior grade plywood (covered with vintage Bart Simpson stickers, for cabin bed platform)
> two brand new brushed nickel finish aluminum towel bars (to make 'rails' along the cabin bed platform on the open side)

Next stop: sealant, insulation and flooring...

It's good to finally have something to post! Looking forward to your insights and feedback...

Joyce
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Old 08-24-2011, 09:50 PM   #2
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Re: The Twinkie Files

thats some stretching of the budget!
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Old 08-25-2011, 10:05 AM   #3
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Re: The Twinkie Files

Hey Momsawake --- Welcome and congrats on the scrounging scores! Paying retail sucks! Anyhow, I'm anxious to see your flooring when it's in as I am looking at going with bamboo myself. Prefer "real" to the laminates. Best of luck with the buildout and do share pix of your progress.
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Old 08-29-2011, 01:34 AM   #4
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Phase 1: Seal & Insulate Re: The Twinkie Files

Thanks for the welcome! There are rumors of pics but so far the crew with the camera has not been forthcoming. Soon, I'm being told. There are 3 of us actively working at the moment.

We are 3 days into Phase 1: Seal and insulate.

Roof = Got the roof and gutters rust-free and scraped/sanded around any chipping paint. The old gal has a roof rack on top that's close to the hull, making it tight to get in there with the wire brush. Eventually we made sanding blocks to get at the seams under the rack. Next: We still need to scrub/clean the heck out of the surface and apply the elastometric membrane. That's the plan for monday. (And after that... the UV-reflective coating.)

Floors = We used the area that will ultimately be for underbed storage to experiment with getting the rubber floor mat and coving off the floor. Let's skip the gory, frustrating details and suffice it to say we'd rather live with both of them than die trying. Instead of removing it, the plan is to put plywood down right over the rubber and top it with thin vinyl stick-on tiles for now. @Tango, sorry it will be awhile before we finish the floor properly; I've decided to use the bamboo flooring I have now to top the two plywood bed platforms instead of for flooring.

Ceiling = Went with the 1/2" foamular @ R3 for ceiling and wall insulation, glued to the inner hull. It was not nearly as flexible as I thought it would be for sure. It took quite a while to figger out how best to work the adhesive which, being a free-range material, was not ideal. Even so, it worked for the flat center ceiling. We used a thin tacky coat on the steel and a gloopy mass on the foam (eventually). We used an old masonry float to smooth the panels - worked great without leaving dents. Now there's the side curves to cover.

The curves are crazy-making. We tried scoring the foam sheet horizontally (along with trying less glue, tackier glue, more glue, more pressure, less pressure, etc). Finally, we hit on the winning combo of a V shaped scoring pattern and 3M spray mount. Somebody suggested spray mount here on Skoolie and it IS expensive but... I tried a can left over from an art project and it worked beautifully on the steel with tacky adhesive (did NOT work so well on the uncoated steel though). We're going to spring for the 3M and finish it up tomorrow. Next... ceiling facing and ribbing...

Walls = We also wanted to get the wall insulation up off the floor and ready for facing. We cut 1/2" insulation panels to fit between the bottom of the rail and the top of the coving and snugged it against the inner hull. Then we cut a second layer to go from the top of the coving to the top of the rail to yield us 1" of insulation (R6) and a flat wall. The outer panel is taped in place with metal tape until we face the walls (probably with luaun).

It's been hot and sticky work so far but more tedious than hard. Now that the curved ceiling panels seem to be resolved, we're optimistic about the roof cleaning/coating and the ceiling/wall facing proceeding quickly so we can get on to the floor.

Whoo Hoo!
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Old 08-29-2011, 01:59 AM   #5
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Phase Zero: Materials #2 Frugalicious Re: The Twinkie Files

Another installment of the Frugal conversion scrounge-o-rama...

First the bad news. The free insulation is 5" thick so we held our noses and went for Foamular 1/2" insulation panels from Home Depot for ceiling and walls. As it happens, the Foamular panels were on sale so we saved about 30% (something anyway). Also purchased a couple of roller covers, sandpaper, and some cheap wire brushes.

Now the middling news. Flooring adhesive for $1/gallon. It's not ideal for the ceiling and wall work but it's servicable. I wonder if I can use it for wallpaper? Hmmm. Other finds and scrounges: two short rice paper shoji screens, probably to use as a sliding door entry to a sleeping berth, some good lumber scraps, bolt of heavy Japanese rice paper wallpaper (for ceiling facing), black and white stick-on vinyl tiles.

Now the super news: 7.5 gallons of elastometric membrane coating, one unopened 5-gallon and a usable partial.

Total cost for all these new, used and scrounged items about $245, roughly the cost of the elastometric membrane bought new.

I think I like this.
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