Monday, April 4, 2011

Carpet Call

I got an email today pointing out the lack of posts to this blog. Tom, I am sorry, I have been a slacker when it comes to this blog. We have been very busy at the Works though. I think some of you might like to see exactly what has happen since my last post.
P.S. Tom, thanks for the nudge...

The build out has begun. It is hard to see in the photo but a pan was fabricated to cover the entire bathroom area. Any falling water will go in the drain and no where else. There is a piece of plywood in the bottom of the pan to protect it while we walk in and out. The curb is also got a strip cover it while we walked in and out. We walked in and out literally 100's of times as you will soon see.

The side walls of the shower follow the curves of the trailer. How to get that curve perfect? Make a template. I used rips of luan and broke the curve into sections. I carefully scribe each section and joined them together...

then add in a vertical element perpendicular to the floor. I now have a perfect template of the entire wall. From this template I can make the actual panel that goes in this location. I can also make the aluminum panel that will face the interior wall of the bathroom and the maple panel that will face the salon.

Do you see how this works? I have the wall perfectly copied. Slick right? To make this template, it took about 150 trips to a bandsaw, jig saw, or belt sander. Once the copy is made, it only takes about 15 trips in and out to get a perfect fit.

This is not a good fit. A little scribing and a little belt sand...

until it is all gone. No gap, tight fit. This kind of attention to detail is what separates the boys from the men. Not to float my boat, but this kind of skill has taken me over 18 years to learn. Scribing is not an easy thing to learn and every time I do it, I feel challenged. I live for a good challenge.

And there you have it; the inner wall section. Next step is to cut out the inner aluminum then the outer wall section. Then to move on to the next wall and repeat. The template had to next be scribed to that location. Not one bulkhead is the same as the next. Each and every time, I had to reshape the curve before cutting out actual pieces.

Here you see some of the fir strips that stiffen the wall and act as studs. This has not been attached tight to the floor and wall and that is why you see light at the top. When in place, the gap is gone.

The same principle was used all the way around the trailer. You may notice the water tanks are sitting in place. The cabinets will be built around them.

This will be the refrigerator cabinet. It is a single panel of maple with fir supports on the inside face. A solid maple face frame will be fabricated once all the bases are made.

The space here is a comfortable 32 inches wide. I was concerned about constricting the view, but instead the eye is drawn into the space between the cabinets. A room divider will be utilized to make the front a private space when needed.

Hope you liked this little update. I have been working some other projects through the shop during the past few weeks also. I am not going to bore anyone with photos of axle swaps or replacing a refrigerator. I know some would enjoy it, but I will save it for some other time.


  1. Outstanding update, Frank - You've obviously been busy. I suck at scribing panels, and totally understand the amount of time doing it the right way entails.

    Thanks for the update!

    [Signed] Mean old Tom...

  2. Great looking work Frank! I don't have that kind of patience. It's always good reading your posts here and on the Airforums, You always share a lot of good knowledge and experience.
    Thanks Doug

  3. Thanks Frank! I love these updates, and look almost daily to see if anything new is here.

  4. Good stuff Frank, especially the way you make templates using luan, much better than cardboard, I’ll use this approach in the future. I remember an earlier post where you made the same kind of template of the outer edges on the inside before taking the shell off.
    Great stuff, Spike

  5. Impressive work, Frank. Love the cork floor. How much thicker is the cork floor compared the floor tile that was put in there originally?

  6. I can attest to the results of Frank's excellent scribing skills, on a much smaller scale. The new dinette ends he made for my Minuet fit like a glove.

    Tom (the younger, slightly less grumpy one)

  7. Frank, Is the finished wall going to be Luan or 3/4 material? If 3/4 or 1/2 where do you get the extrusion to match? Jim