Sunrader Weekend Work Update – December 5, 2016

It’s been awhile since I buckled down and worked on the van. I’ll admit it.

I feel like after the hectic sprint to get it ready for the Penn State Weekend, I really haven’t touched the camper – Pivotal Tracker also agrees. The estimated completion date for all items is now well into 2018. Yes, you read that correctly – 2018.

Last week, I recognized that I had really moved the van to the backburner. I went thru the Pivotal Tracker Board and reprioritized everything in that backlog according to what we need to get done. I’m sure that there are items that I missed, but I feel like it’s become more modular – meaning we focus on the over cab area & finish it before moving onto the next ‘area’ of the camper.

Anyways, I’ll start recapping what I accomplished during this past Saturday –

  • House door lock fixed
  • Reseal driver-side over cab window
  • Add cedar siding to driver side window
  • Add more Reflectix to front over cab windows
  • Prep for ceiling installation
  • Test 12V fan functionality
  • Rear access panel wood replaced
1981 Toyota Sunrader House Lock

The newly working house lock!

The house door lock has always been an issue for this camper while we’ve owned it. More times than not, the camper was completely unlocked because the lock was ‘stuck’ and wouldn’t turn. I thought that this door lock was a lost cause and purchased an Eye Hook Lock to just use on the interior of the camper. However, with a good bit of Dry Lock Lubrication, the lock works just like how it did in 1982.

The Busted & Resealed Window Seal

The busted & resealed window seal.

The driver’s side over cab window appears to have come unset from the Fiberglass body of the Camper – only at the top of the window tho. The window managed to pull away from the fiberglass, even though it was sealed with Butyl Tape and silicon sealant. This allowed a small amount of water into the over cab – luckily I caught this issue a week or so ago when I initially installed the cedar siding. More on this in the next paragraph.

While I was installing the cedar siding on the driver-side over cab window, I had to pick up 1″ long Square Sheet Metal screws since the stock screws were just a bit too short and rusted from the previous water damage. After several adjustments to the cedar cutout, the metal window frame sat nicely in place. Once the piece of wood & frame were in line with the window, I screwed the screws in and adjusted as need be. While screwing in the top screws, I noticed that the window was pulled back into place! This definitely tightened up the seal better than I anticipated.

A Hearty Lunch

A hearty lunch of two double cheeseburgers and a small fry to keep me going.

Another easy win for the day’s work was installing a little more Reflectix on the over cab in between the front-facing windows. This was easily accomplished with some professional grade 3M adhesive spray. Just note that if you get it on your hands and put fur lined gloves on, your hands will look ridiculous. We’re not too sure yet what material will go in this area, but the ceiling

Prepping for the new fan installation was a rather simple job. This mainly includes gathering the proper materials that I need and re-reading the fan’s installation guide. Which is rather straight forward. I already have a 14-inch by 14-inch hole in the roof that I’ll utilize for the new fan. The only thing that I need to be cautious about is cleaning the roof & interior well enough to make sure the fan has a waterproof seal.

1981 Toyota Sunrader Rear Storage Access Panel

1981 Toyota Sunrader Rear Storage Access Panel

One last thing that I did was cut out a new piece of wood for the rear access panel door. This access panel is about 19-inches by 11-inches and allows quick access to items stored under the house seats in the rear of the camper. Currently, the house battery bank and inverter are located back there. Trying to figure out how to get the door assembly apart without breaking the entire thing was also difficult. In the end, I wound up pull apart where the frame of the door met (near the piece of tap above). This gave me enough wiggle room to get the piece of wood in. However, since there was old particle board in the frame still, I tried to scrape it out with a knife. But, most of it was still held with some sort of glue. This was probably the biggest pain in the ass project of the day. I think it took ~10 times of trying to install, uninstall, trim portions of the door, and repeat in order to get it to fit just right.

This week is cut a little short since I’m heading out of town to go see my dad. However, I’m hoping to add a cylinder lock to the rear storage access panel. Getting this lock installed will fully secure the entire van from the threat of thieves. A HUGE task that is my stretch goal is to install the 12V fan on the camper. Looking at the weather forecast, Wednesday will probably be my best bet.

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