Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Onboard Camper Shower (rough-in and construction)

After a little planning and measuring I have decided on the shower construct.  The plan is that I can sit on the seat that I will modify in order to clean up a bit, if need be, I can stand up.  There is just more elbow room when sitting thus the reason behind the somewhat smaller footprint for the shower catch basin.  It will all come together, at least it has in my mind's eye.

1-1/2" PVC rough-in partially complete, will catch both the sink and this shower, the drain vent will be located underneath the sink area.  The shower flooring will be laid on a slope on both sides leading to the floor drain.

 Ran out of enough scrap long enough to complete this entire fill in, so I must piece the flooring together.  No worries...fiberglass cloth tape.  I left about 1" lip on the vertical panel above the floor to prevent runout of water. 

Did you ever see the high tech manner in which I designed the ceiling height and spacing needed inside the shower space.  Check out that high-tech shower design method

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Backwall Install (complete)

After completing the fiberglassing on the exterior of the camper, i moved to the backwall to complete the glassing in that area.  My rear wall on the camper is a piece of 3/4" plywood with the exterior side of the plywood having been coated with three coats of 635 Thin Epoxy, medium set.  This waterproofing also creates excellent bonding when the cloth corners are being lain.

If you have read some of my earlier posts by chance, you have discovered the reason I chose to use the plywood rear wall was primarily due to a panel shortage on the panel purchase order.  To purchase one more panel would have cost me $300 + shipping, plywood is $36.00.  Plus the plywood will provide the necessary structural facet needed to accept fasteners for the door hinge, striker plate and bolt, bike rack on exterior.  Furthermore, since the rear wall is plywood, I can simply tack on some 1" firring strips which will act as studs to aid in hiding electrical wires behind paneling on the interior.

Also, i can easily mount other accessories on the interior of this rear wall as opposed to mounting apparatus on thin fiberglass skins. This rear wall will be painted thoroughly when I get around to that portion of the project.

moving on inside of the camper to rough-in the shower area next

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Nose of Camper Rough-In Complete

We received a warm streak in the weather which was really conducive to good glassing, thereby allowing me to complete all of the camper's exterior glassing for the most part.  Still have a little to do in regards to cutouts for access doors which is minimal.

So I am finished with the exterior side of glassing on the nose of the camper yet still have a little work to do on the interior portions of these joints.  The interior should flow much more smoothly for I can heat the interior of the camper easily with a convection, oil filled heater to ward off the impending cold weather.

Part of the nose of the camper ended up being constructed with pieces of panels that were too short to meet properly in the centermost vertex.  I had to piece some smaller strips into the void to fill-in the rather significant gap between the larger panels.  Thanks to Sir Issac Newton I understand that for every action there is an equal and opposite reaction, so it was I placed a piece of 1708 biaxial cloth where the four panels meet to contend with the forces that could potentially be applied to this region.(see photo below).  My concerns are when the truck bed rocks side to side which could easily dislodge just basic tape.

Had to mix me up some structural compound (fiberglass structural peanut butter) to cover the area at the top of the nose that also possesses fill in material.  The ratio of 1/4" strands to glass should be high enough for this to remain.  Some TLC in grinding and this should work out fine. 


So now the basic camper shape and exterior is 'fiberglass complete'


meet you at the backwall.

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Some Cooler Weather Fiberglassing - its November

Well here it is November and boy is there lots in the air:  Hurricane Sandy struck the New Jersey area leaving vast flooding of neighborhoods, flooded vehicles and homes.  They are in for another storm approaching as we speak leaving thousands without heat, then the presidential election and the wars following,

and here I am trying to do some cold weather fiberglassing in November.  

I made myself a makeshift workspace totally enclosing the area around the camper so that I could heat the ambient air and the camper itself, in preparation for cold weather fiberglassing.  I used a sheet of thick mil. black plastic on the sunset side of the working area which really heats the interior area nicely on that side during the lunch-evening hours.  I am pumping heat into the area through a duct from a remotely located propane, forced air heater to keep the area warm when the nightly temps drop down into the mid to low 30s.

The days are reaching highs in the 50s right now, next week possibly low 60s day.  So the little bit of fiberglassing I have to do, i really have to work to get it finished before the...well you guessed it, "the colder winter temps continue to creep in."

I was concerned with fiberglassing at such temps but the setup seems to be working.  Plus the structural seams have pretty much all been done, most of which were done in optimal polyester resin working temperatures.  What I am doing now is just the last layer for aesthetics. 

I know this makeshift workspace is not the most aesthetically pleasing you have ever seen but it was fast and was cost effective for what I was trying to achieve.

 The infrared heat lamps were oriented as far away as possible to keep the seam areas warm but not placed too close so the resin would not cure out too fast.  The resin still cured faster than what I desired but I really have no other alternative at this point but to move forward with the setup.

I distributed the projection from the infrareds amongst four fixtures to cover the length of the seam.

I have quite a bit left to do, but given current weather and some other circumstances am left with no other choice but to go one seam at a time for now.  Seems to be working, i just hope the faster cure does not create a brittle layer, later.

I'll keep you posted on progress.  Take care, 


* update:  some warmer weather moved here shortly after the date of post and we experienced 65-68 degree temps with nights at 49-50...I was able to get most all of my camper exterior joints glassed and finished....Thank God..finally!  see - Nose of Camper Rough-In Complete