Showing posts from 2016

Time for Welding

Off to the Welding Shop Having exposed the trailer frame, we were able to assess what needed to be fixed.  The brake drums clearly had "something" rolling around in them.  Upon removal of the drum, I found the brake pad adjustment mechanism had failed, and parts had been rolling around for some time...getting a sort of polishing. Remember those rock tumblers you used to see as a kid that would convert ragged chunks of unattractive slag into the Hope Diamond?   That's pretty much what was going on inside the brake drums, except with asbestos and steel.  Nothing you'd hang on a necklace.
So, we towed the trailer over to DFW Welding Services, where Tim assured us that everything could be fixed...and that he could even add on a 2" receiver hitch.

After... Tim and his team did nice work for us, although our project seemed to get placed into the "low priority" bucket.  Here's some shots of the stuff he fixed up for us.


Time to Use The Demolition Saw! First we removed a single wall, and saved it so that we could use as a template later...

Not for the weak-kneed! ...and the walls, came tumbling down...

Down to the Trailer Pretty soon we were down to just the floor, and not long after that we had a bare trailer, and a stack of walls and a roof grid.

Saving Things for Posterity

Labeling and Storing
We labeled and stacked everything; saving what we thought would be useful in the reconstruction.

Tin Roof. Rusted.

Top of Trailer Here are a few shots of the roof of the trailer before we REALLY got into the tear down.

Removing The Interior

The Gut-Job Commences... Before the walls come down; the interior has to be removed to the exterior.  Here's a quick chronology of removing the furniture.  Had fun finding all the EMPTY wasp nests and mud-dobber whatcha-ma-callit-homes.  Dobber-dwellings?  Mud-pads? 
First Up: The Galley Goes Bye-Bye

Next: Benches are vanquished...

The new "open concept" Cree After taking out the lavatory, closets, and (almost) queen sized bench/bed, we were left with a nice blank template in which to dream our dreams of vintage camper bliss.  Ain't she a beaut?!?

Exposing the Rot

Wood Rot Here's a few details of the condition of the trailer as we were removing the skin.  A lot of the wood that looks black might look like it was burned.  It was in fact rotten.  We experience several pieces of lumber simply falling off the camper as the skin was removed.  Really; it is incredible this thing didn't blow apart while Erin drove it from Austin to Dallas.  Check out the photo below with the anchor bolts hanging loosely...the wood that they were originally anchored in was gone: rotted away.

Here's a close up of the street-side upper roof line curve.  You can see how blocking and strips of plywood were used to create a nice smooth curve.  This portion of the trailer was in relatively good shape.  Although, at the bottom of the curve, the block that was there is almost totally gone.

Contrast that with this shot of the street-side rear, lower curve.  Totally rotted away.  You can see the nails are the only thing remaining.  Yikes.

Here is the same street-sid…

Onions Have Layers

Peeling Back The Skin
We first started removing the skin.  On purpose this time, and not while doing 65 mph on I-35.  Here are a few choice photos...

Before The Deconstruction

Interior Shots
Here's a number of photos of the trailer before the deconstruction.  We took it apart bit by bit...hoping to find that we could reuse some of the structure; but as you will see; it was mostly a total loss.  About the only thing we are reusing is the door frame, and all of the windows.

Interior is shown first.  Pretty rough.  The dinette converts into a bed I can actually fit in.  I'm 6'3" - so that's a pretty good space.  Nice feature is the storage behind the bench on the left side that doubles as a shelf.

Here's what was left of the kitchen.  Looks like there used to be a gas oven and stove (judging by the hole in the side of the trailer which I presume was a vent.

Looking towards the back of the trailer you can see the bench that pulls out to an approximate queen size sleeping area.  There's a bunk that looks like it was added by a previous owner (not original).  You can also see the closet on the left which is mostly taken up by the gas furn…