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Old 05-09-2012, 10:59 AM   #81
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Re: The Roach Motel

Wifey says I'm over-thinking this project. She was watching "Swamp People" and one of the guys was living in a school bus with a sofa and a card table for creature comforts.

What was I thinking??
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Old 05-10-2012, 04:18 PM   #82
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Re: The Roach Motel

I took Roachie to work today and installed my linoleum floor. My job is basicly to keep an empty building from walking away so I have a BIT of free time during the day. Most of my bus work is done at home 'cause that's where all my tools are, but this job didn't need many tools.

I had laid down tongue and groove flake board over the insulation thinking that the T&G would line up the panels but after I got it laid down there were high spots at the joints that the floor leveler stuff would have a hard time leveling out. I had to get out the belt sander and level out the edges before laying the lino. The linoleum was a freebie from the building where I work. Nice, heavy stuff. Two extra rolls were squirreled away from a previous remodeling and there was enough to do the floor with some left over for the stairwell. The insulation is done except for the wheelchair door which I'll seal up once the cabinets are in. From the outside the painted-out windows look identical to the others.



Of course I ran out of glue but Home Depot is a just short walk away. When coming back I saw a pickup parked right by the sidewalk at an Arby's and in it was this guy with his eyes closed and his head resting on the headrest and what looked like a blonde head bobbing up and down in his lap. I thought to myself "Man, these guys are really bold" but kept on walking past them. When I got even with the truck I saw that the guy was actually asleep and the blonde head was a golden retriever scarfing up his french fries while he slept.
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Old 05-10-2012, 04:32 PM   #83
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Re: The Roach Motel

Quote:
Originally Posted by roach711

Of course I ran out of glue but Home Depot is a just short walk away. When coming back I saw a pickup parked right by the sidewalk at an Arby's and in it was this guy with his eyes closed and his head resting on the headrest and what looked like a blonde head bobbing up and down in his lap. I thought to myself "Man, these guys are really bold" but kept on walking past them. When I got even with the truck I saw that the guy was actually asleep and the blonde head was a golden retriever scarfing up his french fries while he slept.
I laughed so hard at that...then I realized that you had to take a closer look to see the "rest of the story"...perv
.
.
.
.
.
.of course...
.
(I would of done the same thing )
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Old 05-10-2012, 05:04 PM   #84
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Re: The Roach Motel

LOL hillarious story!!

I wish i had that kinda free time to do work on mine while at work.. sure i have lots of free time but its only in 1-2 minutes intervals... unless its a rainy day.. but then i wouldnt take my bus down the road to work if it was raining!
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Old 05-10-2012, 09:07 PM   #85
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Re: The Roach Motel

Having that much free time is only occasionally a good thing. I like being busy and having nothing to do makes for a loooooong day. I do have internet access, though, and that's how I got sucked into this schoolie maddness.

As for the "couple" in the truck, if they're willing to put it out there, I'm willing to watch. Besides, I *had* to walk past them to get back to work.
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Old 05-11-2012, 10:04 AM   #86
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Re: The Roach Motel

bus madness is probably more expensive than internet madness... well, except for my wife with all her credit cards...
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Old 05-11-2012, 08:30 PM   #87
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Re: The Roach Motel

Quote:
Originally Posted by chev49
bus madness is probably more expensive than internet madness... well, except for my wife with all her credit cards...
The internet is dangerous for me because when I have time on my hands I start looking around for a new project, and that always gets expensive. Before getting the bus bug I was building up period accurate WWII rifles from parts and before THAT I built some very light and very expensive bicycles. Retirement may be a pricy proposition for me.
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Old 05-11-2012, 10:10 PM   #88
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Re: The Roach Motel

Ditto to that! I'm only glad that I'm so deep into my bus project that I don't have time to play on the internet!!!
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Old 05-14-2012, 09:03 PM   #89
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I finally got the new side door installed. Truth told, I kept putting it off because I was going to have to wreck the old bi-fold doors to get them out. Sort of a "crossing the rubicon" deal where once the old doors are out I'm comitted and there's no going back. If the new door didn't fit I'd be screwed. Fortunately, the new one fit with exactly zero room to spare.

It's an Anderson 4000 series security storm door with laminated glass, a 3 point latch with deadbolt and an exterior key lock. About $310 at Home Depot. I really like the 3-point latch for security while crusing down the road. The new door is about three inches shorter than the old bi-folds so I'll have to build up the steps a bit so the bottom sweep will seal. Originally I planned to use PVC boards to build up the space but the new door sits farther outboard so I'll have to extend the lower step 1 1/2" and the PVC boards don't have the stiffness that plywood does. The plywood will get a generous slathering of fiberglass resin before going in to prevent rot.

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Old 05-14-2012, 10:28 PM   #90
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Re: The Roach Motel

wow thats a big window!! must be stable! mine seems to pull out if the wind is from the drivers side going down the road..
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Old 05-15-2012, 09:34 AM   #91
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Re: The Roach Motel

Yeah, that is a lot of glass but several others on this forum have used this door with no problems reported (fingers crossed). It is laminated glass which should be pretty durable. They make windshields out of it after all.
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Old 05-15-2012, 09:30 PM   #92
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Re: The Roach Motel

Nice door.
My suggestion in the future is replace the glass with Lexan; a brick will bounce off of that.
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Old 05-15-2012, 10:18 PM   #93
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Lexan is certainly tough stuff and if the existing glass should ever break I'll probably go that route. Maybe put in some of the bullet proof stuff the banks use. Nonetheless, this door is sold as a security storm door. I read multiple reviews where it had prevented burglars from entering houses. They broke the glass, of course, but the bad guys couldn't force the door open.

I spent the afternoon trimming out the stairway and that's taken twice as long as it took to lay the linoleum in the first place. The first step had to be raised 3 inches in order for the door to seal and I put a lot of effort into keeping water out.

Tomorrow it's off to the frame shop for some front end work. The front tires are wearing on the inside and steering is a bit sloppy so I expect some new tie rod ends are in my future. Repairing the brakes was cheaper than I had feared so I'm probably in for a big bill here. Easy come, easy go.
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Old 05-18-2012, 08:04 PM   #94
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Re: The Roach Motel

The frame shop replaced one of the tie rod ends and aligned the front end. Now it steers way better than before with no slop.

While driving to the shop I kept an eye on the storm door and so far it seems very stable with no rattling or glass movement. It is a HUGE window and will definitely be getting a curtain soon. It's a bit like driving in a fish bowl.

Memorial Day is coming up fast and I want to get the bed frame in and a passenger seat bolted down this weekend. I also want to get the bus out on the highway to see how it handles at freeway speeds before taking off for the weekend. My relatives have a neat little secluded campsite about 200 miles away and if there are any problems remaining I want to know about them before taking off for the woods.
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Old 05-20-2012, 08:33 PM   #95
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Another productive weekend. The passenger seat is bolted in, the bed frame is in place, the water tank and water pump are installed and I got a start on the shower walls. The rest of the shower walls will go in once I have the electrical and plumbing routed around the shower.

Here's the passenger seat. Once I tie the seat belt into the wheelchair door frame wifey can finally have a ride. You can see the 2x4 base for the kitchen cabinet in the background. Instead of building a toe kick into the cabinet I'll build a simple plywood box 3" wider than the 2x4 base and screw it onto the base. The base will do double duty this weekend and act as a corral for our cooler. Otherwise, that sucker would be sliding all over the place while we drive.



The bed frame with water tank and water pump below. One shower wall is up and the porta potti is sitting about where it will ultimately live. We decided to go with the original floor plan and clip the bed frame and mattress to give us a wider aisle. The bed frame won't be fastened down so it can be lifted for access to the storage below. Ultimately it will be kept from sliding forward by a closet.

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Old 05-20-2012, 09:17 PM   #96
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Re: The Roach Motel

That's an unusual floor plan. It looks real livable. You won't even notice the bite out of the bed. I've camped for years out of various Suburbans that required a similar cut to accommodate the spare wheel. No big deal.
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Old 05-23-2012, 11:48 AM   #97
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Re: The Roach Motel

My daily driver van is in the shop so Roachie is getting daily use this week. On my way home from work I passed the freeway on ramp, thought "what the hell" and took a little 40 mile road trip. Steering is much improved from before and it ran swimmingly. Sweet spot, speed-wise is right at 65 mph. I took it up to 75 and it ran fine but just seemed a bit unhappy at that speed. I'm in no hurry so 65 is fine with me. I'll find an 18-wheeler or big RV to draft and save some gas.

Up until yesterday I had no idea how I was going to put screens in my windows and side door. One of our Skoolie members came up with a great solution for the windows and I found a curtain screen for the side door. It's called the Phifer QuikScreen and really works well. Cheap, too, at $20. Picked mine up at Home Depot.
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Old 05-23-2012, 04:00 PM   #98
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Re: The Roach Motel

what all did you have to do to get the seat fully bolted down?
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Old 05-23-2012, 09:46 PM   #99
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Re: The Roach Motel

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what all did you have to do to get the seat fully bolted down?
I lucked out bolting the passenger seat in. The battery box, stairwell and frame rail are all right in that area. Fortunately I only had to adjust my planned seat position by an inch or two inboard to have clear access to the bolts where they went through the floor. There is a steel pan below the plywood floor in that area so I didn't even have to use the big washers I saved from the demolition phase. I spent a fair amount of time under the bus measuring to be sure the bolt holes wouldn't be blocked by something impenetrable under the floor. What I should have done was drill small exploratory pilot holes in the floor BEFORE I insulated and laid down the finish floor.

When I insulated the floor I put a square of plywood under the seat area instead of insulation board so the floor wouldn't buckle when I cranked down on the seat bolts. The seat is on an RV seat swivel so it can be used as part of the dinette seating when that gets built.

One problem I ran into was the seat belts. With the seat moved out away from the wall the lap/shoulder belts weren't long enough if I bolted the retractor to the seat swivel where it would normally be attached. I finally had to bolt the retractor onto the wheelchair door frame near the ceiling in order to get enough length. The arrestor mechanism works fine in that position.

I was able to re-use one of the original equipment seat belts but had to purchase a plastic stiffener for the belt latch attached to the aisle side of the seat. The original latch-side belt was too long for the stiffener and had to be shortened and re-sewed. I'm sure that The Powers That Be would frown on THAT.

Fastening the seat down was fairly straight forward but the seat belts were a pain. Whoda thunk it?
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Old 06-05-2012, 08:47 PM   #100
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Re: The Roach Motel

Roachie's maiden voyage didn't happen on Memorial Day. The relatives had too many toys to haul up to the campsite (three 4-wheelers, a log splitter, two lawn mowers and 5 big coolers) so we loaded the overflow on our trailer. The bus doesn't have a trailer hitch so I dragged it all up north with my daily driver van. I was a bit relieved because I'm not entirely confident in the bus's reliability, but ironically it was the van that broke down. I had it in for service the week before and the geniuses at the GM stealership replaced my arcing plug wires but didn't replace the coil wire. Guess which wire was arcing like mad when I tried to start it to come home? When I confronted him the little bastard service guy at the dealer tried to tell me that coil wires don't come with some sets and offered to sell me one for $40. Yes, I expect to get bent over at the stealership but at least I want quality work for triple what the job is worth. (end of rant)

Since then, I did a coolant flush which officially finishes off my maintenance checklist (yay!) I also finished off all my window screens (thanks Ptootie), plumbed in the sink and shower drains, got the shore power hatch cut in and got most of the PEX plumbing roughed in.

Drains plumbed into the grey tank


The shower drain


The water tank is installed under the bed platform


Plumbing and electrical mostly roughed in


This week I'm going to start rubbing out the fiberglass body.
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