A very good, absolutely productive day!!

We had planned to work on Clyde on Saturday, but (naturally) it rained. So, we went to the Bulk Food store, bought enough beef jerky to last us a life time, and spent the rest of the day goofing off. So… Sunday came in beautiful and we got to work!!!

First day of Fall, and the temps were in the low 70’s and a perfect breeze blew all day.

We had a last item of demolition to do. I didn’t count it as a part of the camper, because it was the floor. But, Chad says it counts. So, this is really the last demo of the camper itself. We knew the wood floors had to go. They were all lumpy and bumpy from remnants of linoleum past. They had a lot of water damage at the corners, wheel wells and door. So, that was a given. Using the weirdest of floor removal tools…

Mattock Time!

a mattock (or mattox, depending on where you live), we removed the wood. It came out in chunks. We had to laugh, because we hit one section that did NOT want to come up. Chad was slamming crowbars and the mattock under it and just started dying laughing. He yelled, “We finally found one piece of Clyde that was built well!!!!”  We’ve been hunting it for almost 3 years. Finally it revealed itself! LOL!!!!

That is NOT cotton candy!

Let me tell you, the fluffy, pink insulation stuff was NASTY!!! Water-logged piles of pink slime. Oh, just YUCK!!!

What we could see of the metal under the wood and insulation looked okay, but we could only see a couple of square feet, so we weren’t holding our breath.

Photo 6

Photo 1

Good thing!!! Not only did they have holes in them from the dissimilar metals touching (galvanic reaction/action, see below), they had actually been made of… irregular siding. Yes, it was made of the stuff the sides were made of. I was counting on whisper-thin aluminum to hold my chubby self up off the ground. Oh, my.

So, armed with tin snips, crowbars, a screwdriver and the patience of a saint, Chad went to work!

FIRE!

Where'd the floor go??

As he worked and revealed more and more of the frame, we found out a brace on the frame had missed being welded to the center frame. It was hanging by a thread. So, we’ll have to weld that back on. But, luckily, the remainder of the frame is in excellent shape. It’s got a very small amount of surface rust. So, in the coming days, we’ll be using a metal brush to get the rust and dirt off. Then, we’ll take Rustoleum Rusty Metal Primer and cover the frame with that, then paint it with Rustoleum gloss black. We could use the spray stuff, but don’t want to risk getting any of it on the good siding, windows, whatever. So, we’ll use brushes for that.

Right now, we have a couple of extra 2x4s just bracing the walls to keep them from slumping. They weren’t, but we figured we wouldn’t leave it for long without something. We know our luck!!

Our find of the day is something that just cracked me up.

Bzzzzz! Beehive! 4 small, beehive clear lights. Mounted UNDER the camper, but too far back/in to be of any use for signaling. The only thing we can figure out is that they were there to help you see where to put the stabilizing jacks if you were setting up in the dark. They are SO cool! I absolutely love this fantastic, retro look. 3 of them are in really good shape, one has a cracked lens. We’re thinking that maybe they could be used as reverse lights, since they are white. Whatever the case, we are SO finding a place for these. They’re the coolest find we’ve had on this project and I am just in love with them!!

Our final work of the day was to get the back window in. We took out the temporary plastic sheeting, butyl taped the edges of the window frame and popped it in. We had to wedge some wood around the edges to hold it in place, as we don’t have the insulation or paneling up yet. Even temporarily in place, they look fantastic!

Rear window (not the movie)

Rear window (not the movie)

Front window, as seen earlier

Front window, as seen earlier

We’ll cut the holes for the 4 small windows when we get the floors put in. I’m working on cleaning them up, and finding a place to replace the screening, as it’s picked to pieces on several of the windows. I know that’s supposed to be a very simple DIY, but I’m kind of cursed when it comes to screens. So, I’ll be hiring that one out, Thank you!

In short, we now have a hand full of actual structural stuff to do: repair the weld on the frame, clean up and paint the frame, new metal floors (luckily, we have left over steel from the camper sides, so we’ll utilize that), new subfloor, new roof bracing. Then, we’ll be ready to figure out where to run the electrical and plumbing. Run that, then put up styrofoam-style insulation and the paneling. Then, we’ll have our little box on wheels ready to for its pretty innards! Sounds like a lot, but these are mostly quick things, as Chad has restored tons of old cars, so he’s very used to frame work. He’s a blacksmith/metal artist, so he can weld like crazy. I’m the daughter of an electrician, and helped restore/repair old houses my whole life. We’ve finally hit the point that we actually KNOW WHAT WE’RE DOING!!! So, hopefully it will go quicker now!!!

We’re coming up on Clyde’s 3rd year with us (November 2010, he came home to live with us). I’m hoping 2014 (which will be his 40th birthday) will see him on the road! With productive days like this, I can actually see it coming! It’s about time!!!

*** boring information on galvanic corrosion, courtesy of wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Galvanic_corrosion ****

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Brace Yourself, Clyde!

This was probably the most progress-filled weekend on Clyde yet! We had grown so accustomed to spending hours destroying things that seeing a lot of stuff get built is just mind-blowing! Anyway, the inside of our dear Clyde is completely framed. Meaning that all the walls are now structurally sound, braced where they need to be to allow the siding to screw into place, hold the windows in at the proper heights, etc.

Brace Yourself!

The walls are so sturdy now! When we first got Clyde, you could push on the wall and watch the exterior wall bulge. If you pushed on the wall to shake the camper, only a certain part would shake, because nothing was stuck together! Now, we can grab the brace and shove as hard as we want, and it goes NOWHERE! When you grab an exterior corner and push it, the camper moves as one unit. It’s solid!

In case you are wondering about the bajillion little silver plates, those are called “ties” and they are used to connect pieces of wood that do not screw into something else. Campers are actually put together with metal staples rather than these. While tearing Clyde apart, we found that most of the staples had either rusted/corroded and already broken or were the consistency of dry spaghetti. We figured out quickly that had contributed to how unstable the camper felt. We opted for a much stronger build. Of course, this many staples would have cost about $10 and lasted for a good 20 years. But, we mean for Clyde to outlive us and give some other group of nerds much happiness. So, we went with the $.52 each tie plates. The last trip we made to Lowe’s (aka our home away from home) we bought 40 of them. We are down to one now. Sigh. Here we come again, Lowes!

I did have a wonderful moment this weekend, though. We went to Big John’s Closeouts in Elizabehton, TN. It’s sort of like a builder’s Big Lots. They had our screws there! For cheap! So we got 300 of them (all they had) for about what 100 usually costs. And, I came up with a great way to keep them. They come in a small cardboard box that is very inconvenient to carry around and easy to knock over. So, being that I am a nurse and have access to a LOT of old prescription bottles, I got one of the large bottles (like 90 day prescriptions come in) that has the reversible lid (fat part down, child proof, fat part up, not child-proof) and cleaned it out, peeled off the old label and put the screws in it. If you knock it over, it won’t spill. AND the best part… with the lid on in the un-child-proof form, it make a small dish to keep a handful of screws in for easy access. Cost: FREE and I kept a chunk of plastic out of the land-fill! Not bad, huh??

My moment of genius!

Okay, it’s not rocket science, but it really did work out well. Oh, and notice the fake-grass under the bottle? It came with Clyde and has been thru Hell and back! We use it for everything. Any time we have to crawl under the camper, lay down to do something, etc. it comes out. I am sure its original purpose was to serve as an outdoor “rug” of sorts, but we’ve worked it to pieces! We will let it retire gracefully when Clyde is finished. Because I found an AWESOME outdoor rug at Lowe’s on clearance AND I got an additional 10% off because the only one left was the floor model (rug. floor model. Funny!). I’ll have to do another “stuff for the inside of Clyde” roundup soon, and put a pic of it in there. It’s very groovy, with my 70’s harvest colors and big flowers.

Now, what comes next for Clyde is a HUGE jump. We’re calling Lyon’s metal roofing tomorrow to put in our order. They are a metal roofing manufacturer here in Piney Flats, TN. Buying direct from them, you save a fortune. But, if you’ve ever seen metal roofing, you know it has all kinds of corrugation to it, to make the rain run down correctly. So, it’d be really hard to put on a camper, as it has quite tall peaks and ridges, that would make capping the corners difficult. Here’s where my husband is a genius…

He asked them if we could buy the metal BEFORE it got corrugated. And, you can. Flat, prepainted, good for 30 years at least. AND, it comes in a gorgeous tan color called “mocha tan” that almost matches Chad’s Jeep (aka Miss Behavin’), which is what we will use to tow. I am not sure what our exact cost will be, but it is going to be a HUGE savings. The cheapest we could find replacement camper siding was about $17 per square foot BEFORE shipping. Craziness on a $600 camper!!!! So, this is going to be around $3.00 per linear foot of 3.5 foot wide sheets. Since Clyde is only 6 feet tall, we only have to get 2 sheets per side, at about 12 feet each. So, yeah… it’s gonna be CHEAP. They even sell the screws and water-tight washers in matching baked-on paint. Clyde is gonna look like a new man!!!

So, long-story already too long to be short: We are going to start re-skinning Clyde next weekend. I am anticipating getting both of the long sides done that weekend, then we’ll worry about the ends next time. We didn’t want to bite off more than we could chew all at once (and we don’t have anywhere to store huge hunks o’ metal at Mom and Dad’s, where we work on Clyde). So, we’re starting there, and seeing how we do!

Believe me, my next post of Clyde Work should be AMAZING. Next weekend, the weather is supposed to be perfect, partly cloudy and in the high 70’s. Keep your fingers crossed that it stays that way! Rain will cancel the whole plan, since we have to take all the siding off both sides to get started on this! EEK!

Trust me, I’ll get PLENTY of pictures!

So, say prayers and do dances for good weather and happy engineering, since neither of us know what we are doing!

 

 

Caution: Man with Power Tools & Fire. Wooohoo, baby!

Since we are making Clyde an all-electric marvel, we don’t need the battery box or the propane tanks that ride on the front of the camper. The tanks we took off to Iris Glenn for recycling (they were about a bajillion years old and empty). The battery Chad is saving, as Bonnie doesn’t have one, and will need a new one in the future (hint: if you buy a new battery without an old one to turn in, they charge you extra. So,if you buy an old vehicle without a battery, find some ancient one and take it in. You’ll save yourself a pile of cash). All that remained were the brackets and hoses that housed everything. Our plan is to custom make a box the shape of the yoke on the front (I think that’s what it’s called). Kind of a groovy metal, wood thing, in a triangular shape. So, Chad had to get all the bits ‘n’ pieces off.

Out comes the power tools! I’m tellin’ ya, folks… there’s nothing as hot in the world as a man wielding power tools. Unless it’s a sweaty man wielding power tools that shoot FIRE!!!!!

Fire! Fire!

OK, I might be a little partial to this particular guy. Who knows? I do know that he is going to KILL me when he reads this post. So, it’s been nice knowing you. Please scatter my ashes in Clyde, so the raccoon can carry them into the big, bad world.

Anyway, he got all that junk cut off and also cut off the tetanus special (aka the really scary, rusty chains that supposedly hold Clyde to the camper in case it comes off the hitch. I don’t think these things would have held a june bug to a duck, but hey… what do I know?!). What’s left? A nice, smooth canvas for us to build the box on!

Blank Canvas or messy metal, depends on your point of view.

So, that’s my small update. This weekend is a big deal. We’ll be doing the final bracing on all the walls for the BIG deal to come… NEW SIDING. If all goes according to plan, and we get to work on him the next 2 weekends, we should have his new siding on by August 20th. That is a big IF. We’ve had a lot going on lately, and may have to attend to some family matters one of the weekends. Such is life! But, even if it takes a month more, at least we are making progress and are looking at finally making a BIG step, instead of a million little ones. It’s really exciting.

Oh, and I get to watch Chad sweat some more. Yeah, baby!

A day without disaster!!!

We actually had a day of progress. Pure progress. No explosions, nothing falling apart. No rabid wolves, no scary noises, nothing. I figure that this means we will, very soon, be hit by a meteor. I mean, hey… what’s a Clyde-day without a terrible SNAFU?? But, anyway, we didn’t have an explosion. It went well. What did we accomplish? Why, let me tell you…

THE BACK IS DONE. Done. The whole thing. Yes, it is completely studded in, ready to get insulation, paneling, wiring, etc. It is as strong as it can possibly be!

No way on the face of earth it’ll fall apart now! We even got the siding put back on, although that is only temporary.

We’ve got several areas that will require new siding.

I am hoping it won’t be too expensive to replace these. I’d like nice, new siding. But, if that is not an option due to cost, I’m skimming the internet and hunting used siding. Do you think that perhaps there is a “used, ugly siding warehouse” online? We shall find out!!

 

I also got to do my absolute favorite part of the Clyde Project. I got to tear things up. I ripped out walls, paneling, and framing. Oh, how I love to destroy stuff! Demolition (aka “demo”) is my happy thought! I absolutely adore yanking out walls and insulation and such. Gimme a crowbar, a hammer and a zip-saw and I may squeal in pure delight.

So, with my trusty tools of destruction, I ripped out the walls up to the front couch-bunk.  We have now torn out everything original except the very front wall. Can, I just tell you how much I am looking forward to NEVER seeing the grasscloth wallpaper again? I loathe that stuff.

Oh, and can I go on a rant here? I hate construction adhesive. I love it when I am USING it. I just hate when trying to destroy the camper walls is hindered by over-use of Liquid nails. The paneling is glued to the original studs with roughly 364 tubes of this crap per inch. Seriously, I shed blood just trying to rip off the stupid paneling!! UGH. The rest of the camper was built so shoddily, but they glue everything?! UGH, UGH, UGH.

End of rant.

However, we did have something new and fun… we had a little bit of nature set up housekeeping in the camper while we were away for a couple of weeks. We found the beginnings of a squirrel nest, and a spider with a shiny, silver spot on him that looks remarkably like a Hello Kitty face!

And, now the part both of you have been waiting for: CONTEST ANNOUNCEMENT!

Later this week, I will be posting a poll comprised of some shots of neat paint schemes I’ve found on Pinterest. I’ll have some of my favorites up, and I want you to vote for the one you like best. In the comments, make an argument for your choice. The best, funniest, most persuasive comment will win a small Clyde prize. Don’t go getting all excited, it’s not much! No all-expenses-paid trips to Tahiti (or to Piney Flats for that matter), but it’ll be something super-cute! So, get your thinking caps on and get ready to be creative!

I leave you with one last picture, the late, not lamented Chillolator 3000 in its full size glory, in the middle of the camper floor. HUGE drill on top to show size.

3 steps forward, 2 steps back (it’s still progress!)


Well, I had very little to do with Clyde’s latest work day. Actually, I showed up after it was over and brought dessert! This one was all Chad. He works an odd schedule and has 7 days off in a row every 28 days. So, on his 7 he decided to spend a whole day on Clyde. He worked his butt off and made a ton of progress! Of course, the poor guy had to tear out half of what he’d done before and we now know we will have to remove the AC and we are absolutely sure the camper has been wrecked before, but I’m getting ahead of myself…

First of all, let me repeat what I have said before… this camper was a death trap when it was built. I can now see why Bendix campers are not the world renowned campers like Airstream. It’s because we probably have the only one that survived for more than a year. Seriously, the craftsmanship in these things is like a high school shop project: just enough to pass!!! Case in point, this is the left-hand corner of the camper. This is all that was holding up that entire corner:

Quality from Bendix to You!

Just in case you are wondering, yes, that is a piece of wood someone was too lazy to mitre so it would actually fit up against the wood, instead of holding up the corner of the roof with about 1/8″ of wood held in by 2 staples. AMAZING.

Needless to say, that got torn out and replaced with a correctly and sturdily built corner! But, not before we had our Glitch of the Week! Yes, I think we need to make this a regular part of our posts. Since we discover something catastrophically wrong and wind up digging our hole deeper every time we touch the camper, I think we should have a special segment just for the FUBAR we have find!

This week’s find: Clyde was definitely wrecked by a prior owner. When Chad tore out the section against the roofline in the back, and rebraced it, he noticed what we have noticed before: the back wall has a bit of a bow to it. However, from the top being rebraced, it showed just how much of a bow. Following the line down, here is the damage:

Cotton Candy???

Interior slope up to the ceiling. When this got braced, we got some issues...

Just a little gap...

OK, it doesn't look too bad from the side, right? Just a little gap...

OH, wait...

OK, not so little. This is what happened when we got the top lined up correctly, it bowed all the sheet metal out and revealed that the AC had been installed AFTER the sheet metal had been very poorly repaired!

Unbuttoned

Remember the beautiful seam from the post about getting all buttoned up? Yeah, had to tear it out! Sigh.

Warped Tour

Notice what used to be a small bow to the back metal that has now become so pronounced it is pulling away from the AC unit!

So, here we go again. Chad reopened the corner we’d repaired and rebuilt both corners, but we are having to wait to connect the corners until he can bring in the plasma cutter and his welder! We have to remove the AC unit and get the metal put back down even. That wouldn’t normally be hard, but the AC unit is on a huge metal frame that is welded onto the homemade bumper. So, we have to cut it all loose and rebuild. Look, kids! It’s the word of the year: REBUILD!!!

So, he did all he could do the back, and then went ahead and pulled all of the paneling out up to the doors and rebuilt the bottom of the exterior frame. This has since been put back together, but the pictures are just super-cool! And, any time you think you want to renovate a vintage camper, look at these and THEN decide if it’s worth it!

I love an open floor plan

Wonder why my toes are cold?

Look! Fresh Wood!

Now, less you start thinking we are going to be in a nursing home before Clyde ever gets done… he’s come a long way! The walls are rebuilt all the way up to the door way on the left side, and up to the wheel well on the right. So, there has been progress, it just doesn’t look like it. When we get the AC unit pulled, it will take only a few minutes to button up the back walls and they will actually be DONE and ready for paneling at that point. Due to removing the bound up sheet metal at the back, the camper is back even and now the door closes without us having to throw our full body weight against it!

So, it looks like a trainwreck and we had to take a few steps back, but we made several more steps forward. So, we are still Happy Campers! While this would not be a project for people with no construction skills, we are actually having a great time doing this. It’s been a dream project for a long time, and we’re both loving seeing this little hunk of junk coming together and turning into our dream a piece at a time.

So, don’t feel guilty if you giggle at our finds and terrors and un-progress! We are laughing along with you and I promise, some day Clyde will actually come together and we’ll have a Clydewarming party! You’re all invited.

Both of you.

Button it!!!

Welcome back, dear Readers! When last we saw the intrepid Clyde, he’d been left with a gaping wound in his side. Open to infection (or at least an invasion of squirrels) and mighty drafty, there he was!

A little bit drafty for me

Winter Breeeze....

Well, the surgeon arrived, and his name is CHAD!!!  We’d been working on this first corner (which is the right, rear, for anyone keeping score) for months now. Which sounds more pitiful than it is. Due to weather and scheduling, it’s been slow going! But, we’d had a couple of work days on this corner and it was going S L O W. Mainly because the original structure of the corner was pretty shoddy and rotten. So, we had to figure out how to rebuild it stronger, better, faster (wait, that’s the Six Million Dollar Man… not Clyde). And, our break-thru came yesterday! We finally figured out how to get the windows, the walls and the floor to play nicely with one another.

Don’t know if you remember or not, but Clyde’s back wall had so much rot that the wood had actually swollen and forced the back seam open. The hatchet “restoration” job before us had left all the rot and just stretched some extra metal over the corner. Well, we ripped all that out, rebuilt the skeleton, and finally the moment of truth…

Would the walls fit back together or had so much damage been done that we were going to need to reskin the corner? If we have to reskin, things are going to be MUCH more expensive, as it turns out old camper siding is quite expensive! Who knew?!

So, Chad rebuilt the corner, then we went outside and I helped him pull the metal back around and..

After 38 years, this skin still fits like it did when I was a kid!

The corner, all buttoned up!

Yes, we did use 800 metal brackets in one corner. Don't judge me.

IT WORKED!!! Everything lined up beautifully! We’ve got a few screws holding it together until we get some finishing nails and really get down to putting it back together for ever and ever. The original construction was held together with large staples, but camper siding is thick aluminum and we do not have a staple gun that strong. So, we’ll be going even more old school and using finishing nails!

Now that we have a corner destroyed and rebuilt, we’re good to go. It took us much longer to figure out WHAT to do than it did to DO it. The other rear corner is next and should go a ton faster, now that we know what he heck we are doing!

So, with the corner and buttoned up and pretty, we decided to try something else. For no reason whatsoever.

We’d finally gotten around to getting a hitch on the Jeep, so we wanted to see how it would do moving Clyde. As small as he is (and especially since he is currently pretty much gutted), it should be simple, but we wanted to check.

So, we hooked the little guy up and took him for a short run across the driveway at Mom and Dad’s house. He did awesome and so did the Jeep! As simply as it moved Clyde, we should not have any trouble towing him loaded. So, another worry out of the way! YAY!!!

Go, Clyde, Go!

I was sick as a dog this whole weekend, so I was little more than a glorified gofer (as in, gofer some lunch, gofer this and that). So, this one was pretty much all Chad. I was there for moral (or immoral, depending on how you look at it) support.

And, in case you are wondering, yes, there is a strip off the bottom right outside. We’re waiting to see where we will run in the electrical and water to put that one back on. But, it’s rebuilt, just waiting the metal to go back on.

We also made a really cool discovery. Clyde has had a rough life and I don’t think he’s had a wax job since the early 80’s. His paint is in awful condition and appears to be bone white with avocado green. Obviously, he will need to be repainted, and Chad and I decided we’d like to keep the Avocado, but change the main color to a rich, almond-like off-white. Yesterday, we pulled off a tail light (we will be replacing the ugly, boxy square ones with some retro-looking, round LEDs with flushmount and a cool chrome trim ring). Under it, you could see what the original paint looked like. It’s ALMOND! The exact color we had discussed. It was so cool to know that we are so in touch with Clyde that we already seem to know what he needs to get back to being himself*!

U G L Y, you ain't got no alibi!

The original ugly tail light with what the paint looks like now.

Behold, a hint of the original color!

The small rectangle around the tiny hole is where the tail light was. Notice the difference in color!

*yes, we know he isn’t a person. Well…

Coming up next: retro tupperware fest, AKA getting more STUFF for Clyde!

An In Depth Review (or “What the Crap Was I Thinking?”)

So, Clyde came home with us in November, 2010. It was absolutely freezing!!! So, we really didn’t get to do much on him. We pulled the original, 1970’s, terrifying (and possibly full) che

mical potty out of its little cabinet and threw it into a dumpster as quickly as possible!

You know you are uptown when your potty matches your floor!

Then, Mom and I went to town tearing out all the weird stuff in the camper. There were lots of things we didn’t need. Scary, beat-up lawn chairs, moth-eaten pieces of foam (that were cut out to be the couch bottom, but never covered with fabric.. ick), 2 rolls of toilet paper, an umbrella, and about 300 pounds of dirt. Then, we scrubbed everything with pinesol. Because, hey… even if it was still dirty, it’d smell clean!!!

I must confess, at this point, that I truly still thought all we’d need was to make a few cushions for the “couch” and get a mattress for the back and we’d be good to go. Then, came Chad and Dad, the team also known as “Men Who Understand How Things Work.” Yeah, they pointed out a few small things that might delay the maiden voyage.

There might have been some wiring issues. These were all just laying out under the "couch".

The bed frame, which had been added by a previous owner, looked solid, until you lifted it up, and realized it was just econo-paneling and furring strips. A pretty flimsy design.

Then, we got into the scary issues. The propane system, which the previous owner claimed to be using, was falling apart. All copper tubing, but it was disconnected in places and split in others. So, that is a small, deadly issue. And, it’s the heat, cooking and refrigeration system.

It was determined quickly that there was no way we’d be able to camp anytime soon. So, we began to research. We discovered that getting the propane system up to date was going to cost $500. And, the fridge was a busted up mess, the cooktop was disgustingly dirty and the propane heater was far too damaged to use. To buy all of these we’d have to pay well over $2000, as they are all specialty camper items. So, our $600 camper was going to cost us several thousand to get safe and usable, just from the propane perspective (this is before we got into the structural issues, more on that in another post).

So, we realized that the reason everything in a camper is propane-based is so that people can wilderness camp. Off the grid. In the wild. In the back of beyond, you could still make yourself some pancakes and keep your beer cold. A good theory…

Have I mentioned that I hate nature? Oh, Chad loves it. He’s all about going to waterfalls and hiking and all that. I personally think nature is hot, sticky, messy, and often tries to kill you. Clyde would NEVER be used for wilderness camping. So, why are we looking at fixing this crap? Because we were thinking you had to do what had already been done. That’s just kinda stupid, so we quit that right off the bat.

We decided we’d just go right ahead and make it an all electric camper. And, in addition, since we were not planning on Wilderness camping, we also decided to make the whole thing run on 110, which is what you plug into at the campground. Most campers have 12 volt wiring, which runs off the battery (again, so you can use it in the wild). Clyde had a battery box and an inverter, so the juice coming in from the campground got converted to 12volt. The battery looked horrible. So, that got chunked, too. This way, we can use normal, household wiring, electric outlets and so forth. Also, we’ll be able to buy a regular fridge, cook top, etc.

Of course, realizing that we were not going to use the propane items, and that we’d go with regular 110 wiring and that the bed was a death trap, and that the cabinets were made to hold all these things we weren’t going to use, we decided to gut him. Yup, tear out the crappy looking cabinets, the make-shift bed, all the appliances, all the visible wiring and pretty much leave the walls, the wall-to-wall couch (added later, by a former owner, but made sturdy) and the shelf above it. Yup, we were leaving 2 things and tearing the rest out. It was too cold to do much, but we had a plan! ‘At this point, Clyde went to sleep at my cousin’s house, behind her garage, and we waited ’til it got warm!