"Runabout Resto" - 1994 Coleman Destiny Rio Grande

KO4GVF

Member
Mar 31, 2022
30
The canvas is back in place!!

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Man, now it feels like a real camper again. After snapping the last pic, I literally fell backward on the bunk and lay there for about ten minutes. So close... so doggone close.
It was overcast yesterday and the battery was at 86% SOC (hadn't yet got it up to 100%), so for fun I threw out the solar panels again to see what the draw was.
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I guess it's a good thing I went with the 100AH battery 😅

As you can see, the galley went back in before I replaced the canvas. Unfortunately I got impatient, and flipped it over before the paint was 100% cured. Will have to touch it up near the hinge in the coming days.
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Word of warning - if you order the Camco sink drain kit, you will need a longer hose than what's provided for this style of galley. Fortunately my old hose was long enough to survive having 2" lopped off from each end and still work, so I didn't need to order a new one... yet. Most everything tested out great, but for some reason I'm getting a small leak whenever I flip the galley over. I know it's coming from the drain, but that thing should be sealed tight as can be. I guess I either messed up on the plumber's putty, or didn't put enough sealant on the threads. That'll get fixed before I install the cabinet doors.

Speaking of, I cut and routered out nearly all the wood to replace the cabinet doors. The sheet I bought covered all but one door. I was gonna leave it be, but now I'm thinking I want to redo the drawer faces as well... The blonde wood I used only cost $20, so... might as well?
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Other odds and ends: New fire extinguisher and bracket!
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New "t-style" level!
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And finally, the upgrade-that-I-wouldn't-name in the last post - dual LP tanks!
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I still need to make or buy a line that goes from the regulator to the hard line, but to me this was the hard part. Now I need a cover to hide the mismatched tanks... 😆
 

Patrick w

Active Member
Aug 13, 2021
507
amazing rebuild. its like you built it back from scratch. I would have walked away from this camper, after having dealt with mold and rot before.
 

KO4GVF

Member
Mar 31, 2022
30
amazing rebuild. its like you built it back from scratch. I would have walked away from this camper, after having dealt with mold and rot before.
I wanted to give up several times over the past month. Pretty much every time something didn't go according to plan, really.

Fortunately, one of my pet peeves is forum threads like this one that die out unresolved. I always need to see how the story ends!

Unfortunately, I now have a time limit to finish. The transmission in the Avalanche is dying, and I refuse to pay what the shop is asking - so unless I can find a reputable shop that will do it for cheaper (not likely), I'll be doing a swap in the driveway. If the camper isn't done by the time the new transmission arrives, it'll sit unfinished for awhile. I know new projects are a death sentence for ongoing projects, so I'm hoping to get this wrapped by the weekend!
 

KO4GVF

Member
Mar 31, 2022
30
More paint!
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"Narragansett Navy" by Sherwin Williams for the cabinet doors. I was going to paint the original drawer faces alongside the new cabinet doors, but the differences in edge designs bothered me; therefore I got another 2 foot sheet of plywood and cut new faces for the drawers so they'd all have the same chamfered edge.

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Rustoleum Hammered Black for the dinette table legs. The wife wanted white, but I thought that would make them stand out too much. One look at the hammered black and she changed her mind 😁

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While waiting for the paint to dry, I pushed the forward bunk back and did some clean up work in the storage trunk. Originally, the side marker wires were sealed between thin sheets of plywood. I didn't do that because I used a single sheet of 3/4 ply and because it would make tracing potential wire problems harder. Since I relocated the battery off the tongue, the practically new braided wire loom I used to protect those wires was no longer necessary; so I repurposed it for the marker lights and fixed it all in place with half-inch wire clips.
Since the original cargo light was broken, I stuck a white LED strip under the lip next to the hinge. I should have a door switch today or tomorrow, so I'll have pics of that install when it's done.

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Originally, these Colemans had a small cabinet here to house an optional cassette toilet. Either this camper didn't come with that option, or the original one broke, because the previous owners replaced it with this one which didn't fit inside the cabinet. My "fix" was to delete the cabinet and make a small divider wall that would still provide structural support to the door that the original cabinet provided. It will also prevent the toilet from sliding forward during hard braking.

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So... cabinetry is not my forte. No matter how many times I measure, how many jigs I make, how many special tools I buy, something always ends up crooked. Granted, my focus was getting these installed before I ran out of daylight. I'm sure some adjustments will make them look a little better. That said, a good friend of mine replied to these pics with "straight is overrated anyway." I guess she'd know better than me 🤣

That's all for today's post! We're getting closer and closer to completion 😁
 

KO4GVF

Member
Mar 31, 2022
30
Holy cow... it's hard to believe, but after 2 months of work, the Runabout is DONE.

Well... kinda. Installing the galley cabinets signaled the end of restoration project I started in April - there are still the cushions & curtains left to do, but neither of those are preventing us from going camping! Awfully nice coincidence that next weekend we'll be hitting up the Eastern Shore 😁

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I guess I need to make the stove match, too... but that's a project for another time.

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The latch for the swing door was broken when I bought it and have had no luck finding a replacement... so I grabbed some epoxy and neo... neody... some fancy strong magnets. They do the trick nicely!

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After all that, I closed it down and hitched it up for a shakedown run. Took it up the highway to a fairly rough road to make sure nothing would come loose or fall off. The only noteworthy thing was that the toilet slid around a bit, which I'll fix with a left over bracket.

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After cleaning up the driveway and opening it back up again. She's ready for the road!!
 

KO4GVF

Member
Mar 31, 2022
30
It's been more than half a year since we last went camping, so I said "the textile updates will have to wait" and we hit up Kiptopeake on the Eastern Shore of VA.

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I've joked often that if I'd known I was going to buy the Avalanche, I would've waited and bought a larger RV. This trip should serve to confirm it was merely a joke, as the Avalanche broke down just after the shakedown trip. If we had a larger and heavier camper, we would've had to scrap the trip. Not cool! The Subaru was more than happy to take up the task, however, and I wouldn't hesitate to use it again! Because, come on... who'd want to miss this sunset??

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So how did it do? Pretty dang good!! If I had to pick out a flaw, it's that the faucet design isn't the easiest to clean up:
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Beyond that I have no complaints so far. I'm excited to get back on the road again, so much so that I'm already looking at booking a couple nights between now and our next planned trip in September [:D]
 




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