Okay, so let’s begin. I backed it into the driveway, leveled it and put the jacks down to keep everything stable while I work. I pulled out the dinette cushions and the rear gaucho cushion to make room for tools and supplies. I also ran power and brought in a fan, because this is
Once the cabinet was out of the way, I could remove the ceiling panel. I pulled the 1” strips and all the nails in the full ceiling panel around the vent. The damage wasn’t very extensive, but I wanted to reinforce the weak/sagging ceiling “beams” while I was at it. I put beams in quotes because they used 1”x2” pine for the supports and after 50 years they have started to bow. I am not removing the walls so I just scored and cut the panel flush with the walls and yanked it out. I was surprised that there was very little sign of water damage other than the veneer; the frame around the vent was still intact. I picked up some ¾” square tubing at the Railroad Yard, our local steel yard, for about $10 to reinforce the ceiling. I just predrilled holes for screws and wiring and used 1 ¼” screws to fasten three pieces of steel to the existing wood. I am willing to sacrifice a little increase in weight for the additional 2” of head room and lack of water pooling overhead along a roof seam and vent.
I then installed the Fan-Tastic fan and routed the wiring to be connected later. The fan was a great fit, and easy to do following their step-by-step instructions. I got it from Vintage Trailer Supply for about $140. It has a three-speed fan and is gray in color with a flat, not domed, lid that makes it look similar to the original Hehr roof vent, which now resides in my spare parts pile. While I was sealing up the new vent, I took the time to scrape off old roof cement around the seams to reseal them, as well as a small pin hole near the vent. I used Dicor self leveling seam sealant I picked up from our local RV dealer, Mason’s RV for about $10.
Now that the roof wouldn’t leak, I moved back inside. I removed two pieces of birch from under both windows. Here, there was some water damage to the framing so I removed the ~3,000 50-year-old rusted screws from the bottom of each window, and the glass which was held in with approximately 30 pounds of caulking. I managed to get most of the screws carefully with my cordless driver. Others had to be coaxed with a small set of vice grips. The last couple had to have slots installed with my grinder and were removed with a large screwdriver.Once the glass was out of the way and the screws had been removed, I could pull the old frame and install new wood. Luckily, months earlier, being the pack rat that I am, I had picked up about 50 linear feet of oak flooring for free on Freecycle. I used this as my new framing, which substantially improved the rigidness of the front end. I then cut new birch panels that I picked up for $17 each at Stillwater's Douglas Building Supply to fit in the ceiling and sides, to be trimmed out later. It took a couple weeks to get the 4x8 sheets but the price was right, and I was still working on the tear out anyway. I then reinstalled the glass to keep the weather out until I paint. I want to replace two small areas on either side of the front window, but these will have to wait until I remove the frame for painting. I used more oak to beef up both sides of the dinette and the rear gaucho since all creaked a bit when I settled my delicate frame upon them (HA HA).
After this I will move outside for a while to work on a few exterior projects. So, if you are following along, so far we have:
Bearing Repack $100
Fan-Tastic Fan $140
Three Sheets 1/8 Birch $50
Three Sheets 1/8 Birch $50
Bringing our tally to: $1,210.
Until next time dear readers, shasta la vista...