Prime Directive

Yeah, we’re geeks, so the title was a MUST. We (and by “we” I mean “Chad”, because I had an insane week and wound up having to go into work for a few hours to get our head above water. Chad stuck to our schedule, and did Clyde work. I did show up and bring him drinks and help clean up at the end. So, I wasn’t totally useless, just mostly) got the frame welded in the necessary spots (the one we discussed earlier AND another spot he found that had only a tiny spot of weld) and primed!

Primed for Fun!!!

Primed for Fun!!!

OK, it might not look like much, but getting all the old rust off and having it primed, it really feels like we’re moving forward! So, yay for us!!!!

Say goodbye to the bumper (formerly known as the Chillolator holder).

Say goodbye to the bumper (formerly known as the Chillolator holder).

Nekkid camper does not have a bumper!

Nekkid camper does not have a bumper!

Also, Chad removed the rear bumper. Mr. Metalsmith is simply NOT satisfied with it, so he’s custom building one that will also double as a storage tube for the sewer tube. He’ll be using 4 inch square steel. Because, in this house, we do not merely build… we overbuild!! I think I should get that made into a family crest for us!

Our plan is to put the floor in next week, while Chad is off work (he works this week, so that gives us plot and plan time. Ya know, to make ANOTHER trip to Lowes Home Improvement, where they know us by name).

Of course, being us, we had to have at least one “oops” moment. We were about to leave the camper, and realized we’d opened the roof vent, and needed to close it. We were both too short to reach it without standing on the frame. That had just been painted. Chad had to do some serious ninja moves. But, he got it closed. Yeah, only us.

Why, what big eyes you have!

Look! Look!!!!! Just look!!!!! CLYDE GOTS EYES!!!! Well, one eye, anyway! After a small snafu (yeah, like that’s so abnormal here) with the order, we got some butyl putty tape. Chad actually hid this roll when it came in, so I didn’t even know it was here.
I yelled down to our part of the house to come for supper when I got home. He came bounding up the stairs and said, “Hey, you might wanna look at Clyde!” I looked out, and there it was!! A windowed Clyde!
He said he bit off a bit more than he meant to. Apparently, to get it to STAY in, he had to also put on the inside trim ring! Which, since we have no insulation or paneling up, was a bit of a pain. He rigged it for now, got it in nice and snug and there it is!!!
It was getting dark, so I only managed to get one sort of half-decent picture. But, it’s so wonderful to see a beautiful, clean, fully installed window!

clyde window
This is a baby step, but we’ve lost SO much time on Clyde this summer, that seeing something done is just heart-warming!!!
And, to know that Chad came in from a long day at inservice and did this for me… how cool is that?!
Love that man!!!!!

Pinning Away

Still not much of an update on Clyde. He’s hanging out in the backyard, and has weathered a LOT of rain and snow with no leaking! So, good progress, but not any REAL progress. So, to keep you from dying of boredom while you wait for a new post (LOL), here’s a couple of boards that are Clyde-inspired on Pinterest.
The first is a board I pin just about everything vintage trailer related on. Cute exteriors, ideas for interiors, a chandelier or two. Just the usual.

Next is the “cut and dried” board of pieces, parts, etc. Everything from water heaters to wiring diagrams with some tail lights and awning rails thrown in.

Hope these give you some day dreaming to do, and some neat ideas to follow up on!

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!