Saturday, April 3, 2010

Easter is a Time For...

Aluminum stair edges and contact cement...

While Mike works on the new cushions for the dinette and the front bunk, my job is to get the rest of the carpeting finished. Today I focused on covering the two rear benches, which was actually a very easy little project. The contact cement is simple to work with, as is the carpet -- although as the afternoon warmed up the glue started tacking up a little too quickly. I just rough cut the carpet, coated both parts with glue, waited a few minutes and then smoothed the carpet on. On the front edge, I tucked it around for a neat finish. As simple as that. (I added some more project photos to the slideshow for anyone who is interested.)

Oh, did I mention that before I started I pulled out all the remaining staples? Yep. More staples.

With the benches covered, the back really looks sharp. I used new stainless steel screws with countersink washers to hold the panels in place. Hopefully they won't cause too much wear on the cushions, but I don't see any way around them because the luan just isn't very strong unless it is held in tension.
Duncan spent some time clearing carpet and staples off the 2x4 that holds the coach door strike. I love it when he lends a hand, but he probably doesn't think much of peeling off filthy shag. Today he was game and he did a great job.

At this point, I ran out of glue. A quick trip to Home Depot had that solved, or so I thought, until I got home and realized that the only type of DAP contact cement they carried is the water based version. Gasp. Unless I have significantly better (read "any") luck with it tomorrow, I'll call it a complete bust. The solvent-based glue reeks up a storm and gives a nice dip to the IQ if you stand too close, but it dries almost as quickly as I can work and sticks tight. The water based stuff...not so much. There went my goal of at least starting on the floor of the overcab bunk.

Instead, I opted to fit some aluminum stair edge to the cab-coach interface and to the lip of the entry step. It is thin and easy to work with using a hack saw and a drill. I used some longer stainless screws to hold it in place where there was a good substrate of chip board, and the included spiraled tacks in the middle. Hopefully it will stay in place just fine.

On the step I added some Gorilla glue since it seems to do a pretty good job of metal-on-wood. Now all that's left is figuring out a way to fill the space between the hardwood and the door frame. I haven't got that quite sorted out yet.

Through the whole project, I've been enjoying the new stereo. It sounds fabulous and I have it wired to easily connect up with the iPhone. The only problem is that the truck battery seems to run down awfully fast. Even though it cranks the truck powerfully and reliably, I think it may be heading towards end of life.

Bikes are so much simpler...

Oh, and Gonzo came for a visit today after the sun came out. I suppose this was his way of calling me a fool for not spending the day in the garden...


  1. Found you through discussion board. Love what you are doing to your Sunrader. We just recently acquired a 1987 21' Sunrader that needs all of the things you are doing as well. Ours has the rear seating area/bed with a dinette on the side across from the galley. Bathroom behind the driver's seat. Entry behind passenger seat. Your new carpeting looks great! Thanks for the detailed explanation and pictures. I know it will be sharp and fun to use when you are done. Can't wait to begin on ours. Cleanup in process then figuring out how everything works so we can at least take it out for an overnighter. Like what you have done to your floor. The edging looks nice and will help protect it too. Ours has the stick on, wood-looking tiles that definitely need to go and soon. Keep posting!

  2. Congrats on the new rig. The restoration is a fun (if all consuming) process... enjoy it. I have lots of things I still want to change so we'll see how it turns out! Thanks for stopping by.

  3. We got our 87 21rd back in July and have been puttering around with it since. About to start on the inside and was wondering if you have product information for the carpet that you used. Also, since we are in the East Bay maybe the name of the upholstery shop? Thanks, Kim.

  4. Mike at Tri-Valley Auto Interiors is great. He sourced the flexible carpet and encouraged me to go the DIY route in the coach. will get you there. Hope to see you out there and would love to see some photos of your rig. Have fun