Friday, July 3, 2020

Rebuilding “Ms. Merry” the Amerigo– And the Story of the Flimsy bed–Part 4

During Part 3, I mentioned that other work was going on while the glue and fiberglass cured on Ms. Merry's new Snap-n-Nap Wings, so in Part 4, we'll cover the work going on inside Ms. Merry's Snap-N-Nap to prep for the installation of the new wing walls :).

To start off, here's Merry's Snap-N-Nap Bed with the mattress finally removed!  The pan wood is actually in better shape than I was expecting, given the mildew smell that this area had been hanging onto.   Turns out the smell was actually coming from that nasty fabric wall covering they'd used.

The paneling on these sides was held on with a couple small pan-head screws and a very minimal amount of adhesive, I basically just had to push a putty knife between the wood and the aluminum and popped right off.

Time to start getting that nasty vinyl fabric wall mess out once and for all.....  To remove it, I simply ran a box knife along the joints to cut it and pulled it out by hand.   The vinyl is carpet foam backed type stuff and is only held on with spray adhesive.  As I tore it off, I discovered that moisture had gotten in around the window at some point and had soaked into this nasty fabric as the back of it was stained with old mildew and mold spots.

Yay.... more spray foam.....That's all going to have be scrapped off so we can come back later and install some wooden framing along the perimeter for installing proper insulation board and wall paneling later.  Mercifully, a rubber mallet and a putty knife pops it off the fiberglass in nice big chunks, leaving little residue behind. 

The wooden "floor", and I use that term loosely, was simply held in by two 1/4" headed hex head screws, with them removed it lifted right out. Sadly, I forgot to take a picture of the laughable 1/8" thick fiberglass insulation mat that was underneath the aluminum sheet that makes up the bed pan's outer skin and the wall paneling floor that was in place.

So, my next discovery of stupid was the fact that they had glued the wiring for the tail lights on the inside.... to the foam.... Which makes zero sense, because there's a nice cavity specifically for pulling wires inside of, formed into the fiberglass wall!!!

Fixing this wasn't hard, just annoying, as I had to remove the new tail lights had I installed a couple years back so I could run my fish tape through the wiring cavity and re-pull the wires like they should have been done from the factory. Also took a moment to drill a new entry hole into the top edge of the cavity so that the wires going up to where they pass through the bulk head would be able to be placed behind the new wall insulation.

This also gave us a moment to remove the original plastic license plate light/mount, which some tourist decided to help themselves to the original Washington License plate a couple years ago by breaking off the lower part of the mount. I'll return in a later chapter to show the new one installed after sealing the original holes and installing the new steel mount.

Once the wiring was taken care of, I set about cutting 1/2" polyisocyanurate foam insulation to put in the voids in the bed pan frame (there was no insulation here from factory). As its wasn't practical to remove the aluminum skin that makes up the outer skin of the bed pan, and because there's nothing on the outside of the bed pan on the back section that's up in the clamshell, we'll push the insulation in place in those sections later.

Using the original pieces as patterns, I traced out new wall paneling and reinstalled in into place along the perimeter walls.

And this is the new bolstering floor frame that is being installed in the bed and and will be sandwich anchored to the original aluminum framed pan floor, which was way too thin to safely support an adult sleeping in this bed.   This floor, which is based upon the design and materials used in the cabover floor of Mr. KIT, which supported two adults sleeping on it for years, will be more than durable enough for the single adult that will generally be using this bed.   So far, its been weight tested up to 380lbs (AKA I crawled on it) without any bowing or buckling, and this was before the insulation or plywood floor was glued and anchored on top. 

More 3/4" polyisocyanurate foam board :). In case folks are wondering why I use this type of foam, its because unlike polystyrene foam found in most RVs, it has nearly double the RV value for equivalent thinkness. Most of Ms. Merry's walls are rated at at least R10 or higher, where the same thickness in polystyrene only yields R4 at best. Since we do alot of camping in cooler temps, bolstering the insulation factor of the walls will help keep the furnace from having to cycle on as much while dry camping or urban boondocking.

And last, but not least, the new plywood floor is in :)

This wraps up Part 4, but there's still much more to post! So stay tuned, I'll be adding more in the upcoming days. :)

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