Saturday, August 24, 2013
Joni's Re-Hab, Part Three
My buddy Gary has been pretty busy with other things, but he's still made time to work on Joni. He's getting closer and closer to being done with her. I'm pretty excited about this, because once Joni is done, work finally begins on me. I want to look my best for our upcoming camping trips, and I'm pretty embarrassed to have anyone see me at the moment. My time will be here soon, but it's hard to be patient. Let me explain what's been done to Joni in this series of photos. First, there was nothing reflective inside Joni's taillights to reflect the light and make them nice and bright. Gary found some replacement mirror material at Wal-Mart, cut it to fit inside the taillights, and as you can see, the reflection now is mirror bright. Moving to the front end of Joni, she was missing several parts on her right side to hold up her stone shield. Gary made a pivot and stone shield lock from various parts. He cut the main part of the pivot from a galvanized hurricane anchor he found at Home Depot for eighty-two cents. With a little grinding on it's edges, it pretty much matches the cast aluminum pivot on the other side of Joni's window. It's possible to make pivots for both sides out of one anchor, but Joni only needed one. The support rod for the awning was cut from a piece of 1/2" aluminum c-channel. The locking mechanism was made from several parts, including a lamp nipple, a clevis pin, a spring, and some washers. How he comes up with these ideas I will never know, but Gary is quite good at making things work for jobs they are not originally intended for. Heading inside Joni, you can see that he added window trim to the large rear window, set the nails, and caulked the holes. Joni's owner will paint everything later. The side window was quite a problem. The entire wall has a good amount of water damage. Since Joni's air conditioner will be mounted in that bare frame most of the time, the wall needed some "beefing up" without replacing it. So, Gary used some 1x2 for window trim, and inserted longer screws from outside of the aluminum frame and into the trim. This "sandwiches" the weak plywood wall between the aluminum frame and the solid wood, stabilizing the area and making it good and solid. No problem with this area holding the weight of the air conditioner, even during travel. The last pic is of Joni's vintage Eskimo metal fan. The remaining pieces of the incomplete Humphrey gas light were removed, and a small plywood mount was attached behind the wall of Joni's over-dinette cabinet. The plywood mount contains something called a t-nut fastener. It's basically a threaded nut with "teeth" on it that is pounded into a hole in the plywood mount. It accepts a machine screw from the front side of the cabinet that the fan hangs on. When the fan is removed, the machine screw can also be removed. That leaves nothing unsightly hanging out of the cabinet. The black piece of carpet underneath the base of the fan serves two purposes. It hides the large hole left behind by the old gas light, and it cushions the fan and silences some of the vibration created when the fan is running. Gary doesn't always think of everything, but I would definitely give him an "A" for effort. I hope I've explained all this stuff clearly enough that you can understand what I'm talking about. Living here at the Green Acres Garage has been quite educational for me. I couldn't have told you about any of this stuff when I moved here, but I'm learning more and more all the time. I'll probably have one more report about Joni's re-hab before she leaves us. I'll write more soon, I promise. Have a good one!