Cupboards, Taping and Painting

Cupboards, Taping and Painting

You will read on a lot of Airstream forums that diehards tell you to "Keep everything original in your Airstream". Me, I'm not that big into original oak cupboards. I didn't like them in the eighties and I don't like them now. We are painting everything white. Don't judge me.

So first all of those cupboards had to come off of the hinges and were laid on makeshift tables in the basement. TSPed[trisodium phosphate], sanded and primed and painted.

 (click on first photo below for slide show)

Then the trailer itself - all of the curtains and blinds had to come down. A piece of advice: make a drawing of the trailer and mark where everything goes. Way easier to put back.  I did that with the mini-blinds. With the curtains, I marked where they came from as I am making new panels but need to know what size goes where. The mini-blinds are going to get cleaned.
I had to tape EVERYTHING - the windows, the curtain tracks, the lights, the floor, the ceiling fixtures, the cover plates, the speakers - well, everything. I read that you should first use Benjamin Moore Stix, a super, high quality, premium latex primer with unparalleled adhesion qualities. This stuff is amazing. Then the latex paint goes over that. We did first clean and TSP[trisodium phosphate] everything and lightly sanded some of the surfaces. Fortunately, the air conditioning works and we're not breathing in the fumes.
Lookin' good. Still a long way to go...……

 (click on first photo for slide show...)

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Some Notes on the Airstream Project

Some Notes on the Airstream Project

A trailer is like a miniature of a house – all the same systems but concentrated in a 29 foot by 8 foot “small” house. Kitchen, bathroom, living room, bedroom, closets, doors, windows, roof, floor, appliances, sinks, toilet and shower. Harder than it first seems.
First, reality check. Remember I said the trailer had no leaks? Well, wishful thinking. So far, we’ve found four leaks – one from the water tank, one from the air conditioner, one from a tap and another from the pump. All fixed. I strongly suggest anyone read up on those Airstream forums on how to inspect a trailer for leaks.

What has happened so far?

Wheel axles checked and bearings greased
                We still have to see how old the tires are but they are holding up the trailer right now and it’s not a panic.
Sewer hookups checked and working
New roof vents and re-sealed
                We called Airstream in Ohio and then they shipped the vents to an RV place in the US just over the border from us. We picked up the roof vents and had to figure out how they affixed to the roof of the trailer. They sell you the vents but nothing to attach it with.
A/C unit sealed and checked
Exterior seams re-sealed
New LED lights inside and out
                I love LED lights. Environmentally friendly and cheap to run. Lasts for ages.
Carpet pulled up, new subfloor out of ¾” plywood not particle board which Airstream had used, floor insulated under trailer between floor and underpan, underpans sealed to keep from water penetration
                My husband was actually really surprised that Airstream, the Rolls Royce of trailers, used particle board instead of plywood. Gasp. Really a cheap move. But I guess you can’t see it, so what the hell.

New eco flooring installed

                I found this through someone else who had restored an Airstream. It’s light, sharp looking and lays down beautifully. A little glue along the edge of the room and just butts up next to each other. The hardest part was the curve at each end of the trailer.(See the photos below!)
Checked all seals: toilet gasket replaced, shower seals checked, pump seals replaced
Hot water tank checked, taken out and re-sealed so watertight
                A little tip here. As the Airstream whizzes down the road, it vibrates and the tap on the tank can loosen. Our maintenance fellow attached something to the tank so it doesn’t vibrate and the tap won’t work loose. Genius.
Replaced pans under trailer with new galvanized metal and then undercoated the metal supports
Next step is painting all of the cupboards. There is a mountain (forest?) of oak in this baby. Don’t judge. I want the oak painted.
Below you can see some of the progress.  From the plywood underneath to the new Eco Flooring:
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