Monday, October 28, 2019

Sconce Light Fixtures

Here is a picture of how sconce lights illuminate the front of the trailer and bathe the area in soft light.  These lights incorporate both 120 volt AC bulbs and 12 volt DC bulbs for versatility. 

The sconce lights from my trailer were certainly old, discolored and needed refurbishing.

Structurally, they were a bit primitive but still very functional when tested.

The electrical parts simply needed to be replaced for safety.  The thin oil cloth-type diffusion material was stained and discolored from heat.

My stock pile reserves included some plastic ceiling panels.  They were of the proper thickness and could act as a diffuser replacement.  However, the material was stiff and needed to be cut and molded into the proper shape of the sconce.

My carpentry skills aided me in cutting the material into the proper size.  A wooden mold was fashioned to aid in the shaping of the new material for the fixture.

After a couple trial runs and using some external heat I was able to properly shape the plastic into a usable diffuser.

 Both sconce lights gained new diffusers and were now usable.

After being stripped of their electrical parts the fixtures and mounting screws received a couple coats of Rust-Oleum paint. 

The fixtures turned out very nice and were equipped with new light sockets with switches and  efficient LED bulbs.

My refurbished light fixtures work very well, look great and were very satisfying to complete.

Light Fixtures

My Ambassador (SeeMore) is equipped with two ceiling light fixtures.
Both are wired for 120 volt AC and 12 volt DC current.
The above picture shows the fixture with a beautiful glass globe in place.
However, these globes are not believed to be original.

Both fixtures were in need of repairs including new wiring and paint.

Both fixture bases are made of aluminum and needed to be stripped of their parts to fix the dents and bends.

The wiring, switches and sockets (1959) were stiff and brittle but still functional.  
New parts were definitely needed.

After the parts were stripped and dents removed the fixtures got some new paint.
Two separate Rust-Oleum paint colors were used to coat the bases.

New wiring, switches and bulb sockets were purchased from the big box stores and installed.
New wiring grommets were used to protect the wires from sharp edges. 

  After the fixtures were reinstalled in the ceiling they received new efficient LED light bulbs.  Both the 120 volt AC and the 12 volt DC bulbs are installed in their respectively wired sockets.

Caping off the fixtures with elegant globes was a long awaited finishing touch.
However, the globes appear to be too big and touch the switches on either side.

 I enjoyed the warm inside light after all of the hard work.
Unfortunately, one of the hard to find globes later shattered.
I am now searching for replacement globes.   

AC Electric Service

This Airstream is being equipped with 30 amp -120 volt AC service from shore power.
 This should  provide adequate power for this vintage trailer and it's planned usage. 
An air conditioner is not being installed but will be included in the planned layout. 

Marinco 30A 125V Stainless Steel Power Inlet

Marinco was my choice for an electric plug. It accepted a right angle shore line power cord.
This location is where the previous service was installed so there was already a hole in the side wall of the trailer.  An aluminum stiffening plate was installed behind the outer skin making the plug area much stronger.

The trailer was rewired with all new 12-2 with ground copper cable.  A total of four separate circuits were used to supply the planned light fixtures and outlet plugs.
Sourcing an electric service panel with at least four circuits was less than straight forward.
I found that a 100 amp panel with 6 circuits was nearly the same cost as a smaller panel with only 4 circuits with no possible room for future expansion.  

Here is the panel that was chosen for this project.

Square D by Schneider Electric HOM612L100SCP Homeline 100 Amp 6-Space 12-Circuit Indoor Surface Mount Main Lugs Load Center with Cover

The panel with plywood was mounted to the trailer ribs in a strategic position.
The panel looks massive but will not be visible inside the clothes closet near the rear of the trailer.
It will offer good service, accessibility and have room for future circuits.

Here is a picture of the panel with circuit breakers installed and the cover in place.
A bare copper ground wire was also installed from the panel grounding bar to the frame. 

A test was conducted to prove that all light fixtures and 120 volt plug receptacles were operative.
It was a very satisfying that all items passed the test.

Thursday, September 5, 2019

Marmoleum Real Linoleum

A few years ago I was able to score a bargain on a full roll of Marmoleum Real Linoleum.
It is a specialty product that vintage Airstream restorers like to use as a premier flooring material.

The roll is about 180-feet long and 6 1/2-feet wide.  Certainly an ample amount of flooring and an exquisite find for a good price.  It is exciting to finally get to use this product.

 The whole roll weighed a ton and was hard to maneuver into position for cutting.

With my ingenuity I was able to succeed.

Cutting the linoleum was daunting.  
I did not want to make any mistakes during installation.

Measure 3 times and then measure once more before cutting.  
This linoleum is too thick to cut with a utility knife. 
Tin snips worked well and offered better control.

 A good felt-backed linoleum glue was used to hold the linoleum in place.
The luan flooring preparation worked out great.

The trailer is 25-feet long inside and the resulting piece of linoleum is quite large.
Much time was spent making exact measurements. It was important to hold the linoleum in place when maneuvering the piece for glueing.  The cement block was a good helping hand.

Once this large 25-feet long by 6 1/2-feet wide piece was glued down, more had to be cut to fill the remaining 7-inch space along the side.  This product is designed to be welded or fused together to hide the seam between the pieces.  However, in this case all the seams will be covered over by cabinets, benches, bathtub or closets.  Glueing without welding will be most adequate.

After the entire floor was finally glued down, a rented linoleum roller was used to smooth out the flooring and make sure the glue made good adhesion.

 A big floor to work with.

Lots of critical measurements made for a good outcome.

I was very happy with the end result.  A professional looking floor!
I have a lot of linoleum left over for the next project that my wife says will not be happening!

Flooring Installation

As part of the frame-off reconstruction, I installed a quality plywood floor. I have protected it throughout the refurbishing process.  However, the elevator bolts used to fasten the wood to the cross members left deep cutouts and voids above the heads.  Also, seams between plywood pieces were not as clean and neat as one could possibly achieve.  So, I decided to apply a layer of thin luan plywood to prepare the surface for linoleum installation.

The luan was placed to cover the existing seams and to ensure seam-free traffic patterns.  A pneumatic stapler gun was used to secure the 4 by 8 feet sheets of wood to the floor.  Staples were placed every 6 inches apart and 2 inches apart on the seams.    

Tin cans help cover the waste tank ports during construction.

A total of 6 sheets of thin luan plywood was used.
The end result was a very smooth surface ready for the linoleum.

Zolatone Paint

Excitement builds as I prepare to apply the finish coat of paint to the inside of the Airstream. 

This Zolatone spatter finish was my first choice, as it closely resembles the Airstream's original finish. However, I do not own the equipment necessary to apply that particular spray paint, and after looking at it for some time, I found it to be too busy.

Zolatone also offers a rolled-on finish called Flex Dimensions. It comes in multiple colors that are similar in style to the spatter finish.  
I chose Zolatone Interior Coatings - Flex Dimensions FLX-02463 (  
The paint company provided me a sample of this stock color. The paint has multiple flecks of gray spattered over a light white background. Here my flooring sample is on the bottom and the provided stock paint sample is on top.  The background is the primer-painted trailer wall. I decided to proceed with ordering the paint.

The actual process to order my paint was not as easy as I assumed. After several conversations with company representatives, I was finally able to place my order. It arrived quickly, but the sample supplied with my actual order was different than the original sample. Hence the trouble with samples! Here is a picture of the new sample supplied that was shipped with my order.  
I would have preferred to have more flecks of color like the original sample.

Here is a picture of my floor sample (middle) with the first stock color sample on top and the second color sample supplied with my order on the bottom.  The difference between the two samples must be the difference between "in stock" products and "new production" products when an order is fulfilled.  

Zolatone Flex Dimensions roll-on is a two coat process.  The base coat is applied first with a good quality roller.  It provides an eggshell surface to which the top coat can properly adhere.  The top coat containing the color flecks is applied second with foam-type rollers supplied by the company.

The base coat was applied using a 9-inch roller, a 2-inch roller, and a paint brush for cutting in.
I used two gallons of base coat.

The top coat was applied the next day using the supplied foam-type rollers. 
I used almost 3 gallons of top coat. 

The kitchen overhead cupboard was painted in like manner.

The end product is subtle, but it will be easy to coordinate interior decor.
I am very pleased with Zolatone paint.  It is very good at covering the surface imperfections, and it appears to be very tough and durable.  I would definitely use it again.