Monday, November 26, 2012

Rocket Science

NASA didn't call us in to give them a quote, but I sure would love to work on this unusual Airstream.

Four of these custom units were built for NASA. Their purpose was to quarantine the returning astronauts of the moon missions. They were called the Mobile Quarantine Facility or MQF.

Nixon greeted the returning astronauts of Apollo 11 on the deck of the USS Hornet through that very window. The concern was that the astronauts might have picked up some space germs while on the moon walks. The movie Alien did not come out until 10 years later, but someone was considering the possibility.

NASA was playing it safe and found that nothing came back with Neil Armstrong, Buzz Aldrin, or Michael Collins. Michael Collins didn't get to walk on the moon, he just got to pilot the Command Spacecraft. 

I have often said that Airstream was really embracing the space race during the 1966- 1969 era of construction. Without a doubt the Hornet 3 MQF proves it.

She sports a near perfect skin sporting an original factory finish. Not too shiny, not too dull. There is very little filiform corrosion but the seams are all glommed up and could use a bit of cleaning. 

I wonder if the hatches blow out like most 1968 models do. 

Those doors are hard to come by. I am sure it was removed to make exhibiting it easier.  It obviously is a real Airstream since it has a suicide door. Notice the hasp to the right of the door. The Hornet 3 would make a great deer camp since it already has the mandatory hasp.

That is quite the generator system on the back bumper. Hope it does not cause rear end separation. 

NASA must have been a very happy customer for they came back to buy more. The Crew Transport Vehicle or Astrovan was pressed into service, shuttling the Shuttle Crew to the Shuttle.

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Peak a Boo, Can't Wait to Show This Off to You

What seems like a life time ago, we began work on a 1971 Overlander. This project has been shuffled in and out of the shop floor a number of times while other projects have been worked on. It is now the main focus. Until she is completed we are doing nothing else. I thought I would give you folks a little glimpse at some the things we are doing. 

The entire interior is all new except for the front and rear end caps. The furniture is constructed of high gloss, white laminate edged in aluminum. Keep in mind, the interior is just beginning to go back in.

The layout we are doing is fairly traditional as far as a twin bed Overlanders goes, but the surfaces are all very modern and crisp. All the materials going into this project are also very green. No, not the color green, environmentally friendly.

In this era trailer, plastic bins were used as storage drawers. We have however gone with full extension drawers. There are a lot of drawers in this trailer.

As the interior continues to go in, I promise more than a glimpse of this and that.

I would like to show you something new to me and most likely new to you also. The customer brought this material to me and I really like the way it looks. For the counter tops, we are using a plywood like product made from agricultural byproduct. This is called Kirei board

The board is made of sorghum stalks and a small amount of poplar. It is compressed and glued together to form a sheet material. It is inherently soft, so we are saturating it with West System epoxy to make it hard and impervious to water.

The contrast between this material and the gloss white is going to look very spectacular. 

As we get more of this trailer put together, I promise to share more of the details with you.