Friday, May 14, 2010
Thursday, April 29, 2010
Wednesday, February 17, 2010
"Classic and kitsch pop-culture humorist and author Charles Phoenix is known for his retro slide show performances, school bus field trip tours, roller skating variety shows, kitchen experiments, coffee table books and Slide of the Week emails. He offers a hip and highly original take on American life and style. Fans from coast to coast enjoy his infectious enthusiasm and keen eye for noting oddball detail. He is a recurring correspondent for NPR and The Martha Stewart Show."
Monday, October 12, 2009
Thursday, July 2, 2009
When designing a versatile water system, one that you can use boondocking or living high at some RV park, it is important to note that all drips and drops of water must be accounted for at the end of the day. This is what trailer parks call a fully self-contained trailer and many a park requires this.
Under my kitchen sink...
Getting Water in…..
Fresh water is provided from an external pressurized source with use of a regulator to provide correct water pressure inside the trailer, or from a fresh water storage tank that you fill up and the use of a water pump. I do not have a toilet so my fresh water goes down the sink to a grey water storage tank that I must drain when full. When a toilet is involved there is an additional black water tank which also needs to be emptied and cleaned. A task that never gets old, I’m sure.
Note: 40-60 psi water pressure is ideal (with a maximum of 100 psi). Carry a pressure regulator with you because the pressure level of city water can be as high as 150 psi which is a dangerous pressure level for your water system components .
Connecting your city water inlet to an external water source
Your water system should have a city water inlet spigot that is easily accessible from the outside of the trailer. You’ll enjoy your water more if you use a hose specifically designed for drinking water and make it a long one (I recommend one 50 footer plus an extra 20 footer backup). You never know how far away the water hookup will be. Use the fresh water hose, exclusively for this purpose without exception, and keep it immaculately clean by storage in a sealable plastic tub. Some places will provide the option to hook up to their sewage system, in which case you can simply hook up a grey water hose to a sewer connection, set your grey water tank valve to open and let your used water drain into the RV park’s sewer system. You’ll need a third hose for this purpose. Don’t get them mixed up, Yuck.
So in short, to get started, simply hook your drinking water hose to the source and to the city water inlet and open your lines to remove any air. If you have a hot water heater tank, make sure it is full before you turn on the heat. Let the lines prime and pressurize. Now you are ready to go.
Like I said, I require a water filter in my system. You can use the filter in a couple of locations. Here are two suggestions.
1.) You can divert cold water to a separate faucet with an under the counter filter attached.
2.) You can connect a filter to the city inlet hose and change your filter all the time.
3.) You can buy both and have the option to use both in the case of really icky water, just be sure that the one at the sink also remove microorganisms such as bacteria.
Using the fresh water tank
If you are not going to hook up, you’ll want to fill the fresh water tank at some point in your trip. Be aware that water weighs ~ 8 lbs per gallon. So a full 40 gallon tank can add about 320 lbs to the dry weight of your trailer. Propane is about 5lbs per gallon. Be sure you don’t go over the recommended weight load for your trailer or rig or throw off the balance of your load. Fresh water from the tank gets pumped into the lines by a 12 Volt water pump located just outside the tank. The pressurized lines then feed the hot and cold water systems which empties into the sink. The sink water goes to the grey water tank. A tankless hot water heater works very efficiently in a travel trailer.
Water level monitors
If you can’t hook up to a sewer line, you’ll need to dump your grey water when it gets full. A monitor system is nice to provide you with information about the levels of water in each tank. A simple model is that conductive probes inside the tank light up when wet to tell you whether the water level is low, medium, or high. Eventually mineral deposits make these probes malfunction and they’ll need to be cleaned. More expensive alternative gauges are available and might be worth it if you use a black water tank in which the probes will quickly deteriorate.
Here is a picture my bed area where I'm going to put in a water system much like the one pictured below it, which I found online.
And be sure to look at this website for a much more detailed explanation of RV Plumbing. Mark's Fulltime RV Adventure
Tuesday, June 30, 2009
Monday, June 29, 2009
Monday, June 15, 2009
Rain, rain, go away. While I wait frustrated for the spring and now summer rains to end so I can start my renovations, I have been slowly preparing myself to become a seamstress, a carpenter, an upholsterer, and of course a designer. Designer is my favorite of all occupations, but I could spend all my days picking out fabrics and vinyls, flooring, and patterns. In the end, someone is also going to have to learn to sew and it's probably going to be me. Probably.... I mean, it's unlikely that there REALLY is a sewing fairy who makes curtains in the night or that someone (like my neighbor who keeps cutting my front yard because he's awesome!) is going to come along and do it for me. So if I want these adorable Pinch Pleat Curtains in a yet to be determined color and pattern that will match my dark blue Turquoise vinyl dinette bench seats with white piping, I'm going to need some help. Hey YouTube, hit me with your wand, cause I have not a clue. But wait, these instructions look promising. I can almost see myself doing that.
Make your own fully lined Pinch Pleat Curtains from an expert in her field. Sally's website is at http://www.curtainsecrets.com
Monday, June 1, 2009
Friday, May 22, 2009
Vintage 1961 Holiday House model 19 Classic Trailer
Another survivor found in Oregon! This rare and collectable Holiday House model 19 is rough but restorable. I have two other vintage trailers I'm working on so this one is available to someone else who would like to own a classic piece of mid century design history. It was originally trimmed with mauve and red but someone painted it white. The siding is in good condition but it has leaked and will need a complete restoration including structural framing up front. I towed it 50 miles with no problems but I did use plenty of duct tape on the front corners which are separating due to dry rot. It has the original 14.5" wheels which are rusty with fresh black paint. One tire is brand new and the other is in very good condition and was stored inside the trailer for years. The wheel bearings are in good shape.
The interior is extremely original and I have not tried to conceal or replace anything. With the obvious exceptions of water damaged areas, it is still very attractive inside. There is one small piece of panelling that has been replaced behind the bathroom door and the original linoleum is under the flooring shown. All else is original as far as I can tell. I believe the upholstery is also original since it matches the original brochures and a couple other trailers I've seen. The galley surfaces are in amazingly good shape. The street side dinette booth is missing and the floor there will need to be replaced. There is also some floor/wall separation in the area ahead of the entry door. The rest of the floor seems to be good and solid. Other items missing are the toilet, one jalousie window section on the bathroom window, dinette table, and two kitchen drawers, though I do have the original drawer faces. Both legs are there for the rear gaucho bed but they are not attached. The refrigerator is not original. This unit has an electric water heater in the closet and no black tank. The hitch jack was seized so I took it apart and have the innards, crank, and original steel wheel that goes on the bottom.
I have not tested any exterior lights, electric brakes, appliances, electrical service, plumbing, or propane systems. I have done my best to accurately describe this unit and provide photos that reflect the trailers actual condition. By bidding on this trailer you acknowledge that you are taking on a major restoration project and have been afflicted with the vintage trailer disease, which can cause euphoria, elation, neighbor indigestion, and loss of weight in your wallet. At the polite request of my neighbors, it's sitting out back at work. At the not so polite request of my boss, it's for sale. I don't have to retire off this thing so bid to win! Bring a 2" ball, tow lights, safety chains, duct tape, and drive home proud!
$250 non-refundable deposit via paypal due within 24hrs of auction end. Payment in full due by paypal, cashiers check, or cash within 3 day. No exceptions or it will be re-listed. sold with bill of sale only. Storage for up to 30 days available as a courtesy with buyer assuming all liability. Your bid acknowledges these terms. Thanks!
For vintage brochure pictures and restoration photos of another surviving Holiday House, please search completed listings for "Holiday House".
Current condition....I think you can get to Narnia inside this trailer. This is definitely a one of kinder, but surprisingly there was not a single bidder at $1500. Aren't there any Hudson owners who are also travel trailer afficiando's left in the world? Ok, how about handyman/gangsters? Well, if you do indeed exist, then you need this trailer.
1936 Hayes Shovel Nose Vintage Travel Trailer **RARE**
This is an extremely rare travel trailer. I believe it is a 1936 Hayes. I have never seen another one like it. It is bread-loaf shaped with small shovel nose. The door is very unique. It is arch shaped at the top. Check out the awesome Hayes emblem on the back. This is your chance to have a one-of-a-kind travel trailer. You will be the only one at the rally with one of these. The floor is sound. It does need restoration. Please ask questions. No Reserve!
Ever wondered what it would look like to take a can opener to one of these sardine cans on wheels? Before I open up my own travel trailer to access the integrity of the walls, I’ve been trying to learn my trailer anatomy by reading restoration blogs. Here is an example of a trailer restoration of a 1961 Shasta. Look closely at the pictures with the skin removed. Looks to me like the aluminum skin’s connected to the plywood. The plywood’s connected to the floorboard. The floorboard’s connected to the steel frame. You get the picture. However, what I’ve noticed in the case of my own trailer is that the plywood underneath has grown spongy in spots causing the aluminum screws to lose their grip and the plywood at the base no longer connects to the floorboards at the front of the trailer. Both the floorboards and walls will need to be replaced in these spots. It’s customary to come up with a name for a trailer before beginning any restoration, but all that comes to mind right now is how it resembles a very large vacuum cleaner, zipping down the road sucking in every bug and particle of dust that comes across our bath. Sneeze central has a nice ring to it. You would not want to sleep in my trailer after a drive down a gravel drive, but with some TLC these little trailers can be given a 2nd life. This Shasta is a predecessor to the winged Shastas that have come to define this make of this trailer. What I like about this trailer is that the person who restored it brought it back to its 1961 glory and stayed true to it's original design.
Vintage Shasta Camper Travel Trailer, canned ham
Up for auction is Blue Heaven. A 1961 Shasta travel trailer that has undergone extensive renovation, bringing it back to all of its original glory. The exterior has been professionally painted with automobile paint in the original color scheme, and the body is really straight, but does retain the small dents and dings a vintage trailer is bound to have. I call 'em character!
This little beauty has a super cool and unique interior design, with a sofa across the front end that lies down into a bed. This is a really great place to hang out and read a magazine (which you can keep in the original rack near the front door!), cuz it is surrounded by windows behind and on either side. It feels really open, and when it's time to eat, tables on either side fold down to create a dinette area! There is another sofa at the left rear of the cabin, which also folds down to a bed, and has a built in nightstand. The front bed is 78" x 44" and the rear is 74"x 46".
The sofa cushions are all new materials, in black and gray vinyl, as the originals were missing. They match the new linoleum flooring, which also has tiny cobalt blue specks throughout. The original powder blue with gold sparkle tables and counter tops needed to be replaced cuz they were too damaged (DANG!), and a formica powder blue boomerang pattern was used, staying with the original scheme that sported a white backsplash. Interior storage slider doors also need fixin', and were re done in the original white scheme.
I tried to keep everything as original as possible. Original Morphy Richards "Astral" refrigerator works perfectly, is super clean inside and out and has all grates and door rails. There are some cracks, and some damage where the racks insert, which I have pictured. The Princess stove/oven combo also works perfectly and is in very good condition inside and out. All cabinetry is original with original pulls and hinges, though some of the catches were broken and needed to be replaced. All windows are also original and work fine. Windows have all been removed, polished and re installed with putty tape. Also removed and re installed with new putty tape are all drip guards, storage/access doors, new roof vent, all running, tail and brake lights, as well as the external corner trim (which contains the awning rail) from front to rear entirely. Heck, even the emblems, door handle and grab handle have been installed with putty tape at the screw holes. No leaks here, folks. All windows have new screen, with the exception of the rear closet, which is still in decent shape.
The rear closet was formerly a bathroom with a bi-fold door and spring loaded hinges at the seam, but the toilet was removed, the floor was rebuilt, and now is an empty space with plenty of room for a porta potty, or just to be used as a closet (the original T.P. roller is there, just in case. wink wink.) The humphrey propane lamp works perfectly, as do the 110v kitchen and sconce lights. The rear "cone" light is not original, but is an original 1960's Shasta light. Each sconce has an outlet to plug in whatever you need to plug in, and there is also a standard outlet located under the upper right kitchen cabinet. A breaker box is also located there, and a new external power inlet has been installed. A new municipal water inlet has also been installed, along with all new lines to the original faucet and sink.
Tires are in excellent condition with original hubcaps, wheel bearings have been packed and the break mechanisms have been removed as they are not necessary in a trailer this light, and I have had them lock up on me on a previous trailer. The propane bottle is new and full, the hold down is original. There is a flat 4 plug, and all running, tail and brake lights work. Original Bargman license plate light has a red glass lens. All storage doors and the front door have keys.
As I said at the beginning, this was an extensive renovation. The entire front end was removed below the front and curb side windows to the front door and re framed with fresh wood, and rotted wood was replaced near the door and front end. The roof vent leaked, and so old wood was removed and the roof was re framed. The rear end also had water damage and though not as bad as the front, was also re framed. All repaired areas were covered with fresh birch and coated with amber shellac to give it that "glow" these old crumpets are known for, and all original wood got a fresh coat, too!! I have posted a couple of "in progress" pictures so you can really get an idea of just how solid a trailer this really is.
If you've been looking for just the right vintage trailer to come along, this is it. No leaks, No hassle, No smells, No WORRIES!! Also no title. Just a bill of sale.