Total Conversion Project - 1998 Coleman Sea Pine

Discussion in 'Camper Restoration Projects' started by arkangel, Jun 19, 2013.

  1. arkangel

    arkangel Member

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    To answer some questions:

    chasw98:
    I will be using a wide blade seal around the sides of the sliding room to keep the elements out and the A/C in. Thus the gap between the inner roof and the framing for the outer roof will be as narrow as possible. I would love to have skylights but most RV skylights are domed on top and would not cooperate with the blade seals. Also, I just had an afterthought: The trap door for the opening will actually rest on the roof of the slide room when in use. A skylight would also interfere with the operation of the door. Here you can see how close the tolerances will be, if you can imagine all the exterior layers installed.

    [​IMG]

    I have decided not to wire the bedroom for electrical or sound just to keep things simple. This is my first build so I wanted to do things as simply and frugally as possible. Not just to prove that it can be done, but that it can be done on a thin dime.

    zjrog:
    What type of steel would you use for the studs? I would love to have used steel but in my mind the size, shape, and thickness required for any real structural integrity would just be too heavy.

    BigBaron:
    Diagonal braces are a good idea. Had weight not been a constant concern I most likely would have done a good number of things differently with the framing. I have an alternative plan that has seemed to work great so far. Once the framework is complete the voids in between the studs are filled with precisely measured and cut pieces of styrofoam, exactly the same thickness as the 2x studs. I'm jumping ahead a little with this photo...

    [​IMG]

    These panels are cut to fit and pushed in by hand. In addition to this the interior and exterior paneling is nailed and stapled respectively every inch or so directly onto the studs. As a final assembly it will have far more structural integrity than any one of its components alone.
     
  2. arkangel

    arkangel Member

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    More shots of the initial framing nearing completion.

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    I decided to fill in the gaps between the rafters at the outermost edge, just to keep things tight and help with strength.

    [​IMG]

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    You didn't think I forgot about the A/C did you? I framed out a standard 14"x14" opening in the roof for the the original air conditioner. One of the first things I did in the early stages of the project was plug the a/c in and see if it worked. As luck would have it all it needed was a good cleaning. Blows nice and cold...

    [​IMG]
     
  3. chasw98

    chasw98 Chuck, Debbie, and grandson Jacob

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    I see where you are coming from. It is very easy to manage your project (and wallet!) from the sidelines. I had not though about a domed skylight interfering, but some flat Plexiglas picked up for cheap might be interesting.
    Also from my point of view..... being on the electronic/electric side I just have bunches of wire around and could wire it in a jiffy for essentially no cost. But I can see where you want to keep it simple for now and see where it leads you. You can always go back later and add some touches to it. You built it so you will know how to take it apart if you want to.
    Great thread and I really love all the pictures as it takes shape. We're rooting for you!

    Chuck
     
  4. mainahman

    mainahman All the worlds indeed a stage

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    Really enjoying what you are creating! I look forward to seeing me updates and seeing the progress!
     
  5. Twitch22

    Twitch22 73 N6DDY

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    you definitely have my interest...I will be watching closely. [:D]
     
  6. jayco1997

    jayco1997 New Member

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    I'm wondering if you should have curved the roof to allow water to run off rather than have it flat? I'm actually camping now and listening to the rain so thats what made me think of it, lol
     
  7. arkangel

    arkangel Member

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    Once the framing was essentially complete it was time to invest in some luan paneling and styrofoam sheeting.

    [​IMG]

    I decided on a design for the front cap. Simplicity is key here so it has just a simple radius at the top that transitions into the roofline. I had to make use of some sketchy carpentry to extend my stud cap out to the front face. Whatever.

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    The luan panels are cut to fit and laid into the gap between the baseboard and the stud cap. Each one is laid into place and anchored with 16 gauge 1" brads, and lots of them. I spaced the nails out by about an inch so there are quite a few in each panel. I used Duo Fast nailers and staplers for this project. Besides some unnecessary double tapping they seem like good tools.

    [​IMG]

    jayco1997:
    I would have liked to put an arch on the roof like modern campers have but that would have involved building custom roof trusses. Weight is the enemy there. If I could have framed the camper in aluminum I think I could have used stamped arched roof trusses and given the roof some curvature. Mo money, mo problems. Besides plenty of older campers had flat roofs and got along fine. I hope the rafters I have used will hold true for a long time before they start to bow.
     
  8. Twitch22

    Twitch22 73 N6DDY

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    Actually, instead of doing a domed roof as suggested you could have used the same design that you have with the rafters but instead of making them flat you could have made one end of the rafters (preferably opposite of the door) 1/2" bigger than the other. For example, it appears that the rafters are 2x4's ripped in half making them 1 3/4" x 1 1/2" which makes it flat. Making one end 1 3/4" and the other ends 2 1/4" you would have created a slope enough for the water to run off but it would still be flat enough that most people wouldn't notice that it was sloped, and if someone did notice you just tell them it is for water run off. As a former residential framer I have built countless patios and flat roofs this way.

    Regardless, this is an awesome build and you are doing a great job. I am enjoying watching it happen greatly.
     
  9. arkangel

    arkangel Member

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    The idea of a slight slant in the roof line is intriguing. I'm sure that would have been feasible here as well. At certain points during this build I have been on such a roll that I haven't really stopped to consider the alternatives. When things are falling into place nicely it's hard to slow down.

    Because I am insetting the luan paneling against the studs, the outer framework of the wall (baseboard and stud cap) will be exposed all the way around.

    [​IMG]

    While this initially seemed like it would be undesireable I eventually decided that it would be a perfect way to incorporate some ambient LED lighting for the camper walls. I plan to attach a fascia to the baseboard, the stud cap, and the framework around the doorway.

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    The fascia will have an overhang of a few inches, giving the entire wall a 'shadowbox' type effect. I can mount an LED light strip into the cavity behind the overhang and provide some really cool ambient lighting.

    [​IMG]
     
  10. arkangel

    arkangel Member

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    Just to illustrate the time frame of this entire project so far, I started the teardown work in July of 2012. It was nice and dry at that point (The midwest was experiencing a massive drought) so I had no trouble leaving it out in the open with no protection from the elements. It took me a couple months of work on evenings and weekends to get the framing complete but there was still no roof to speak of. When the rain started becoming more frequent in September I was forced to cover the project with a large 12x17 military tarp when the weather was inclement. There were a few occasions where heavy rain and high winds caused the camper to take on water and I was afraid on more than one occasion that I would lose the project to water damage. It literally became a race with mother nature to at least get the exterior walls covered and get some form of roof on it before winter set in.

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    As I explained before I used styrofoam panels cut to fit for insulation and to make the walls sturdier. I also bought the foil faced stuff to hopefully help with waterproofing in addition to insulation.

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    The styrofoam is exactly the same width as the studs creating a somewhat smooth surface to attach the interior and exterior wall covering to. This eliminates any dead space in the walls and helps with soundproofing too. I also went around the baseboard and the support arm cavities with Great Stuff expanding foam to eliminate any dead spaces or air leaks.

    [​IMG]
     
  11. jayco1997

    jayco1997 New Member

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    I cant believe how fast your moving along every day. Can you come work for me? LOL
     
  12. Jayko

    Jayko Jayco 141J aka Big Bertha

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    Are you going to put in windows?
     
  13. WConke

    WConke Member

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    If your sliding room ends up to heavy You could use the tracks from the rear bed and remount at the top. i'm sure the outer track material is available cheap. Just a thought
     
  14. zjrog

    zjrog Member

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    Home depot carries them. Dimensionally the same as 2x4 studs, but made of sheetmetal. Lightweight, but seem sturdy. Should be near or with the framing lumber. I'm all but certain I'll use them to rebuild my roof.

     
  15. arkangel

    arkangel Member

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    jayco1997: I am actually much farther ahead on the project in real time. The photos I have posted thus far were taken last year. As stated previously I had to race just to get the exterior walls covered before winter set in. She sat for months under a tarp with no progress made. I feel like I'll answer a lot of questions with my story line format. I will let everyone know when my story catches up to the present. Once I run out of old pictures I'll start posting current ones.

    Jayko: Yes, there is one single window in the rear. I struggled with the decision to limit the number of windows but it would have made for far too many extra hours of work. Also, I couldn't find salvaged windows that fit the bill. They were either the wrong size or the wrong color. I prefer black trimmed windows and I was able to find one with an emergency exit hatch so I decided (once again) just to keep it simple.

    WConke: I had originally planned on reusing the second set of tracks to support the extra weight of the bed. It would have helped but I'm afraid that by nature they still don't have enough support to handle the weight of the finished bedroom. That would also be one more obstacle to seal around for weatherproofing.

    I am glad that people keep asking about the bedroom, because I'm really proud of it. It's also still in it's early stages, so there are a lot of unknowns. I am somewhat apprehensive as I continue to add weight to it. I feel like the measures I have taken should be a solid and long lasting solution... if it works!

    After cutting luan to fit and attaching it to the framework with brad nails (lots of 'em) it was obvious: This thing is getting dangerously heavy. Once the bed is out and you have the weight on the OEM supports it is fine but during deployment the bed itself has very little support.

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    The tracks were groaning under the physical stress and I was starting to worry that something might break. A stress failure in the tracks basically would mean that I have to redesign the entire lower slide system, because finding and purchasing the replacement parts is not a logical choice for me. Just one look at the thing makes you think: Too much weight!

    [​IMG]
     
  16. arkangel

    arkangel Member

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    Part of my methodology for finding creative solutions to my fabrication obstacles involves a lot of digging through scrap piles, a lot of standing and staring, and quite a bit of mumbling to myself. After a good deal of this while trying to tackle my weight problem I started to come up with a solution. Actually, to be quite honest I did some research and stole some existing concepts from the industry and modified them to suit my needs. Check out this Keystone Outback. Notice anything familiar?

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    As the sliding bedroom started to come together I realized that it would not only need extra support while being deployed, it would also need extra support while in transit. This would eventually merit two separate additional support systems. The first is actually a combination of two concepts: (A) The OEM bed supports for the rear bed. They are positioned on studs protruding from the rear bumper and hinge from the bottom of the bed platform. (B) A roller and carrier track system as pictured above supporting the bedroom as it is pulled out. I drilled out 1/2" holes in the front valance panel and installed studs and washers to create a proper mounting point.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  17. jayco1997

    jayco1997 New Member

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    Oh okay. I really thought you spent 24/7 on this project. What are you using for the exterior once its totally complete?
     
  18. jab2181

    jab2181 New Member

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    This camper is so cool, love watching it come together!
     
  19. arkangel

    arkangel Member

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    The next step was to find something to make the actual support arms out of. Once again there was a good deal of digging, staring, and mumbling. The final decision: Two different awning arms hooked together in the right way and anchored to the lip of the camper, creating a support arm which the bedroom could roll out on.

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    Reusing old materials in unorthodox ways has been key in this project. It's not only important to me to keep costs down but I am also trying to illustrate how creative and adaptive one can be with less than ideal resources.

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    A small cross section cut from a length of extruded aluminum served as the perfect attachment point for the support rail.

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    The hole in the bracket lines up with a hole in the support arm which can be pinned for easy teardown

    [​IMG]
     
  20. arkangel

    arkangel Member

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    The lower arm rests on the previously installed studs. The two arms are not anchored together. Instead, the upper arm is hooked into the lower arm and gravity keeps the two in check. Of course when the bedroom is in use the weight will hold the arms together.

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    Once the whole assembly is installed it is sturdy yet lightweight. The top of the upper arm is nice and flat and sits level with the leading edge of the camper body.

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    The support arms will accommodate a series of wheels or rollers that are attached to the bottom of the bedroom, holding up the extra weight of the box when it is being deployed.

    [​IMG]
     

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