The Body Page #2

Updated 1-31-2000


Interior roof panelingInterior roof paneling   We cut the 1/8" oak plywood in 55 1/2" widths with the grain and fastened the first sheet to the first roof bow up front.  This allowed the radius to be right in the center of the sheet and made the seam flat.  The roof paneling was fastened to the 3/4" x 1 1/2" Poplar nailer strips we attached between the roof bows using Liquid Nails and #17x1" wire nails every 6" which kept the plywood secure until the adhesive dried.  1 1/2" Polystyrene foam [Home Depot] was used in between the ribs and we used (2) 3/4" sheets of foam at the front radius.  A hand saw was used to cut the messy Polystyrene.  3M Super 77 adhesive was used to adhere the foam and is compatible with it.  Some adhesives are not so check the label.

VentilationVent  is a 14" Elixir with a powder coated metal frame [$39.39 Altman's].  We framed in a spot between the roof bows using the supplied template from Elixir.  We'll be adding the optional insulated vent pillow. To light up the interior, (2) Winnebago aircraft style swivel head reading lights were installed, one on each side of the vent [$12.29ea Altman's].  Since the 16ga lamp cord wiring will be permanently sealed into the walls, I soldered all the connections to avoid shorts.  The roof bows were notched to feed the wire around the vent and then drilled a hole into the ceiling oak and ran the cord down the side wall and into the kitchen cabinet where a fuse box will be added later.

NailersNailers were made by ripping down 3/4" wide Poplar boards down to 1" strips using a table saw.  The nailers were glued and screwed around the parameter of the interior side walls, door and window openings.  The void will be filled with 1" foam and the Oak paneling will be sprayed with 3M Super 77 aerosol adhesive then glued and nailed into the nailers.  I used 3" length strips around the radius curves.

Counter topCounter top  Originally we were going to make our own counter top from scratch and cover it with Formica until we found ones already made.  We purchased the 22"D x 60"L 'Sani-Top' counter [$49.97 Home Depot] and used the table saw to rip some 1/2" poplar strips and glued them underneath for support.  A frame was made to support the partial board body of the counter and we'll use screws so the counter can be replaced if ever damaged in the future.  The frame is being beefed up with supports and gussets to help the side panels from racking back and forth and no structural force will be put on the partial board counter.  The top of the counter was placed 20" above the floor of the Teardrop so we'd have enough room for storage and the water tank.  This made the counter top 40" off the ground which is too high for 5'3" Diane but it's fine for 6'1" me. I'll make a lath platform for Diane to stand on and we can use this same platform while taking our Sun shower out in the Outback.  I used a 24 teeth per inch metal blade in the jig saw to cut the length and holes out for the sink and drop in stove top, which made a nice clean cut and no chips in the Formica.

Built-insBuilt-ins  We purchased the model D25 Wedgewood 2 burner drop in stove top [$35.00 RV Parts Outlet] and is the perfect size for a Teardrop.  The 11"x17" stainless sink [$45.49 Altman's] is 5" deep and attached a camper drain 'P' trap [$10.99 Altman's] to give us extra room under the counter.  The sink drain will be attached to an external bucket.  The 10 gallon polyethylene water tank [$38.56 Altman's] measures 17"Hx14"Lx10"W and this set the measurement for the counter top height.  We installed a 3 way faucet that is a hand pump, 12v electric and city water version [$40.00 Hemet Trailer Supply].  A liquid soap dispenser [$14.95 Home Depot] will hold our 'Camp Suds' [any sporting goods store] which is a biodegradable soap that can be used on dishes or as shampoo and body soap.  This concentrated soap really works great while camping.

RoofRoof I considered using 1/8" Lauan for the roof but felt there was too much flex and give to it. 1/4" would be nice except we had 3 sections where there would be seams and may cause the Filon siding to crack.  We decided to laminate 2 sheets of 1/8" Lauan plywood with the seams staggered and used Franklin Titebond glue to laminate them together [$14.00 gal Home Depot].  We used a generous amount of Liquid Nails on the roof bows and tops of the sides before attaching the first sheet.  1" finish nails were used first but they would pull through the thin 1/8" Lauan plywood. I then switched over to #17x1" wire nails and 3d smooth box nails every 6" and driven into the Poplar spacer boards that was attached to the sides in between the roof bows which gave us 1 1/2" surface to glue the roof to.  These nails held fine while the Liquid Nails dried within 15 minutes.  There was no nailing into the end grain of the plywood sides.  It would have been ideal to use a pneumatic stapler with long staples.

FendersFenders are not required on Teardrops in CA due to their size and weight but everyone attaches them because of their esthetic value.  The round type sure look nice but we wanted something a little different.  While dry camping in the Outback, finding something flat to set things down on is a problem.  We couldn't resist buying the Jeep style 'flat fenders' [$19.99ea Northern] which just cleared the door frame and are much more practical for our purpose which will act as little tables and chairs.  The fenders stick out 6" wider than the tow vehicle and will be sand blasted and receive nicks from pebbles being kicked up by the tow vehicle.  I decided not to attach the fenders to the body and instead onto the chassis frame.  I figure the fenders will require touch up painting on a regular basis so we gave them a good coat of industrial primer and a final coat of industrial enamel.

b19 b22 b23 b25



Return to Home page