XenaCommanders Place

"Participating in Life"

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Bathroom Progress Jan 2015 - March 2015

Posted by XenaCommander on March 2, 2015 at 7:45 PM Comments comments (0)

It has been a while since my last update...    Not a huge progress in that time as I seem to be busy doing other stuff...   10 day retreats...  and work.   But I have kept up some momentum in the truck so I thought I would post some updates...


A pic of the bathroom walls looking towards the rear...   now that it is lined it makes the whole truck seem more like a motorhome..    long way to go though...


Pic of partitions from the bedroom at back looking forward...    Wires have been run for everything required in the bedroom...  (I hope..)  Will be difficult now that I have lined the ceilings if I haven't...


I lined the ceiling in the bathroom with the same stuff the shower is lined with...  I didn't have enough to do to the whole ceiling but the bathroom cabinet I am putting up will cover that so all should be good...  Fingers crossed....  Wired up the lights... and they work great...   even have a bright setting and a dim setting...  very cool.


I mocked up a box to show the size of the vanity I wanted in place...   I think it will work great...  Friend Wayne has his doubts but thinks it will be good practice for when I put in what he wants....  (we shall see....!)


Ok my cabinet making skills have yet to be honed...  but I am enjoying the process..  confidence is not too great yet so progress is slow...   This is the cabinet that will go above on the wall with mirrors on the front...  I built all the pieces but have to assemble them in place...     I hope they fit...


Current status is the bathroom cabinet is being assembled...  Man it took me a while to get the courage to apply glue for a permanent fit....   then I got to get it into the truck and make it fit...  

Stay tuned...

XC


Construction Update

Posted by XenaCommander on October 27, 2014 at 9:45 PM Comments comments (0)

As promised I thought I better catch up with what I have been doing in the truck over the last few months...   Again travel for work has been getting in the way..  Sometimes being too whacked to do any work...  but sitting and planning is still  important..

Frames Progressing

As you can see in the above pic I have been pulling wires from under the truck which go to the major appliances like pump...   toilet...  vacuum generator...    After I got the frames up I ran them through the frames to where the panel is going near the door.
I inset a ply sheet into the frame so I can attach the circuit breaker panel and switches...


I also built a ply box to protect the hot water cylinder and to hold the fridge...  The idea is to have a panel on the front where I can open and get at the cylinder...  and somewhere to dry my shoes..!!   You can see a white pipe at the back corner.   I put this in which goes down through the floor and allows cool air to be circulated to the back of the fridge.   I intend to put fans on the top rear of the fridge to suck air up and over the top of the fridge into the house.    I might even put the fridge on an shelf with a gap underneath it to take air also into the back from the house.


A rear view of progress..   once the frames are done and the small returns are on each wall it stiffens the whole truck up...   When driving down the road at 90 kmh we can notice that it doesn't flex so much.   All good.


Here you can see wiring finding its way to the panel space...  I even used a bit of plumbing pipe at the base of the ply wall to hide the wires...  Cool huh...?  


First circuit breaker board temporarily in place...   Master switch up top right..   I realised the one I put in here is too big and got a small amperage one to put in its place.


Temporary fit of the fridge in its space...   looks good.. although difficult to get in and out..  but I guess it won't be going in and out much...!   Measurements taken and fridge taken out again..  
Note the negative wire from the battery now connected to a bus bar where all negative wires will be terminated.

Toilet Saga....

While all this was happening I wanted to get the toilet working...   I rang the suppliers and told him I was having trouble wiring up the toilet and the vacuum generator by following the instructions..   They put me onto their electrician...  Same story told again...  I sent pics of what I was doing...  he couldn't see anything wrong..  So in the end I agreed to take the truck to Auckland and show him and get him to do it...

Well that was a good decision as I find out that Lighthouse Marine had given me the wrong wiring harness.  So I was trying to hook up the wrong wires to the wrong connections..!!!  Nothing was ever going to work.

But all ended well as Carl from Carl Wakelin Marine was able to sort it all out once we had the correct wiring harness...   So we now have a toilet that works..!!!   Yaay...!!!     Milestone..!!! 

TK did take a sneaky pic with me testing it...  but I don't think it is politic to post the pic here..    :o

Shower goes in...

Now I wanted to get the shower finished....  the order of things changes often but I want to get the bathroom finished so we can use the truck for comfortable camping..!!

I ran the plumbing from the hot water cylinder into the shower and plumbed in a shower fitting and presto..!


Yaay...   and it has a great pressure....     But something is missing...!!!?!?!?    Oh...  the shower has no lining..
So with the plumbing all in place..  I take it all out again and start lining the shower box.
I took out the temporary perspex window that has been in place since the truck was re-paneled and thought I would do a trial fit of the window...


Yep...  she fits great...    I am so looking forward to having them in place.   I love that you can open them...


First a layer of thin ply...


Thats about where I am up to...   Plastic lining next...

While panels are being cured I am pulling wires for appliances like TV and Satellite...   and running wires back to the bed space for lights and USB charging sockets..

All good fun...  I want to finish the bathroom then go back to the bedroom...

Weekend 1 - 2 Nov 2014....
A weekend trip I managed to spend some more time in the shower..!!  after gluing down the beading last week to allow for a drip line I measured and cut the plastic lining for the outside wall...   Very tricky.. of course nothing is exactly square...


Test fit before I measure and cut out the hole for the window.    I didn't want the stress of time pressure so I left it for the next trip..    I ran some wires for the kitchen lights while I had time..  


Weekend 8 - 9 November 2014

Back down for another short weekend so more progress on the shower...


Glued in the outside wall after cutting out the hole for the window...  


Installed the first round window...   Looks great...   and then measured...  cut...   measured...  cut...  measured... cut the other walls...   and glued them in...   Left the protective cover on for now...


Window looks great from the outside..  

Back to Auckland for the week...

Weekend 22-23 November...

More work on the shower...   My goal this weekend was to put in the shower door.   I thought it best to do this before lining the shower inside..   We stopped at the boys shop on the way down and picked up some timber for the surround...  
This became a very tricky job..   nothing is exactly square so I worried about getting it perfect...   Typical.
I cut and painted the surround frame and on sunday I was set to put it in...  
Thank god the shower is designed to fit in a range of sizes so the difficult became rather easy once I got it into the rails.

Mission accomplished although I had a mishap you can see on the top left of the frame..   My new oscillator multitool hit the frame...  Mumble...  I will have to either replace or fix with bog...
Now I can finish the lining and the ceiling put in the plumbing again.. and all is done...  Yaay...!
Next trip.

Weekend 13-14 December 2014

Didn't come down last weekend as we needed an Auckland weekend so TK can sort out the garden...  Not my thing so I went flying with my friend...   But this weekend I wanted to finish the shower... 
So applied a coat of paint to the scotias before fitting them...   while they were drying I put the shower fittings back in...


All back in...   Note that the scotias are in..   very fiddly getting it in but managed in the end...  
Also note the light.    I put that in and it works great..   a waterproof led light.

The hardest part of putting the shower in is putting the 90deg corner flashings..!!!  nightmare... but I managed to get one in and held it in place..   I will do one at a time.

Next trip is for 3 weeks so hopefully I can make some good progress.

More to follow

Stay tuned...
XC

Christmas Break 2013 - Partitions Start

Posted by XenaCommander on January 30, 2014 at 7:10 PM Comments comments (0)

Time ticks by...  End of January and I still haven't updated this with what I have been doing over the summer holidays.

Seat Backs Finished.
The last update I was finishing the seat backs...   I removed them to cover with ply and paint..   I also finished the last of the foam insulation while they were off...


This pic is taken before foam was finished... But all in place..  I will find a friendly upholsterer to make cushions and squabs for the seat...  It is a great day bed.

Satelite Dome Installed
Before I finished the foam insulation I needed to fit the satelite dome onto the cab roof...   I had debated with my self as to the ideal position of the dome...   In the end I decided the cab would be good.


We tested the antenna before putting it up and of course it didn't work...  so had to take it back to supplier..  All they did was tweak the ballum or whatever the little thing is on the end of the stalk thingy...!!  and away it goes.
We tested it again once we had it back in Turangi..  It has a GPS chip on it so knows where to look for the satelite..  Clever gizmo.


XC caught in the process of bolting the dome to the cab and fitting the cover.

Foam Completed... Partitions Start.

I finished off the foam insulation..  Man that is a hot job.. It can only be done on a hot day with a protective suit and mask on...  Nightmare..  But it is done now and I am not spending any more money on insulation..!!!
Of course as soon as you finish the last of the foam you find spots you have missed..!!  mumble... It will do.

With the foam insulation all done I want to get on with the few partitions I will need for the bedroom and bathroom etc..   so a trip to the boys shop and got the requisite lumber..  and ripped it on my bench saw to the required dimensions...


First partition going in..   Man it is a nightmare trying to get everything square..  right angles with the floor.. the sides..  etc..  in the end I figured that the whole truck is not going perfectly square and moving all the time.. So as long as it looks ok...     Note the foam squab in the shower tray...  I dropped an electric screwdriver onto the tray and dented it...!!!!  mumble grump..!!!  typical...!!!   so I will have a memory reminder of that moment..


More partitions going into place... I am cutting the frames in the garage so I am getting fit running from the truck to saw and back...!!!   so many times..!!!


Progress..   I am now in the process of doing the wall by the door which will hold the circuit breaker panel and electric guages and stuff like that... more thought required.
Friend Wayne came down for anniversary weekend so was a weekend of mainly planning as we sat in the truck and discussed different options..   An important part of the development...

More to come...
Stay tuned..
XC

Floor Down Permanently - Bench Seat Back Progress - Nov 2013

Posted by XenaCommander on November 17, 2013 at 7:50 PM Comments comments (0)

Again I have been a bit slack updating this blog..   I know lots of you are watching and checking in so I thought I better pull my finger out..!!!    I have had a busy time recently travelling to Aus most weeks so it doesn't leave much time for progress in the truck...   Yeah I know.. Excuses excuses...!!!     But it is true..   Last trip I even had a fall in a clients clinic and busted a rib.. got chest infection blah blah...  took a while to clear it..!  

Enough of the bleating..   I thought I would start this update with a pic of the truck I took yesterday.  You can see the panel mounts on the centre section...


Cool huh...  I decided not to put the acutal solar panels on the frames.    I am nowhere near ready for them yet so they are still in their boxes...   The recent work has been done on the inside of the truck...

Floor down for good...
I spent some time under the floor figuring what else I needed to do before I could screw down the floor for good...  I had run all the wires I wanted to underneath..  I had put the plumbing in place for the drains to the tanks but hadn't cemented them in place..  (just in case).   but the time was now to Commit..!!  (I hate that word...!)
But I went ahead and cemented all the pipes in place...


Last pipes in place..   The cross pipe comes from the washing machine space... I wonder if I get to use that.

That done I now proceeded to screw the floor down permanently..    As I went along I figured that the lining panels when I come to put them up would have nothing to fasten to at the base....  So I fabricated a little upstand skirting piece and fastened it to the floor as I went.


That should do the trick...    On with the floor screws..!!     so many screws....


I had an oops moment when moving the bench and bed from the back to the front so I can do the floor..   The top cover of the bed base fell off the bed which was on its side as I was dragging...  and fell on top of the toilet..!!!   broke the lid..   Mumble...   Air was blue for a while..   I have ordered another.   I forgot to take a pic of the front view after I had finished fixing the floor...  oh well..

I ran a sander over the floor panels before I screwed each down..   Just walking on them with my boots marks the ply let alone dropping stuff on them..   So I thought I would put some protective paint on it so it would be easier to clean...    So off to the boys shop and got some paint...


That looks better...    and easier to keep tidy..   I will be putting some sort of flooring down over the top of this of course..    at the moment I am thinking some sort of wood decking I will likely make up my self.


Forward view of painting progress...    I had to stop screwing down this panel in the foreground as I realised I had not made a hole for the whale foot pump...   so measured where it should go and cut a hole for it and had to scramble under the truck to hook it up...   works well now.

Once the floor was painted I sat and pondered my next step..   I wanted to start on the partitions for the bathroom but I thought it would be tidy to finish the front engine cover first...   I wanted a seat back to the bench seat which had to be removable for times I (or mechanics) need to access the engine.   So I got the planning hat on and created a design I thought would work...
So it was into the workshop...   Measuring...   Cutting steel...  welding... working out the fiddly bits which there were many...   More welding..


A pic of progress being made...   note the pin that runs down the little thingy's that act as a hinge point...   hope it works...

With the top cover removed it was time to try out my creation...   fingers crossed...


It fits..!!   Note the  C mounts that I bolted it onto..   These were welded to the framing...   This was to make it easy for removal...   I had to drill the final holes while it was in place...   Seemed to go well..  Now I just need to make the brackets to weld to wall so it can be bolted to them and fix it firmly.


And.....!!   It works..   the central "Gate" opens either way...  hinged either side...    Success..!!   Now to bolt it down firmly..   which of course tightened everything up...  causing me to loosen a couple of the mount holes to make it line up when bolted down.    I made the "Gate" shorter so that it can open over the middle seat... and also when there is a couch cushion on the bench seat...    although when we took the truck for a drive Sue just stepped over the back..  That works too..!!!

That done I cut the ply I had used to cover the engine compartment...  It will be easier to move when in two pieces instead of wrestling with one long bit...    I decide to paint that as well...   I was in "Painting" mode..!!


Looking tidy...   I just ran out of truck deck screws so couldn't screw it all down firmly..   will have to visit Allied Fastenings this week.    The back rest turned out better than I thought it would..  It is very sturdy and for now I am not putting on a brace to stop forward and backward movement..   because..  it doesn't...!!    The plan is to cover the back and upholster it to make it look nice..   so I went to the boys shop and got some ply to fix to the frame.


Ply cut...  and held in place with clamps..    I can't screw it all together as I have run out of screws..!!!!   so I stopped work there...   Time to clean up and take her for a run before heading back to Auckland.

What's Next..??   well finish fixing the engine covers and the ply to the backrest..   then on with partitions for the bathroom...  I also have to finish the spray foam insulation..   More foam on order.

Stay tuned...

XC

Solar Panel Mounts Continue : June/July 2013

Posted by XenaCommander on July 22, 2013 at 10:30 PM Comments comments (0)

I retrieved the Solar Panel frames and mounts back from the powder coat man...   I also got them galvanised for extra protection since they will be sitting on top of the truck..

I put them together for a photo opportunity...


Looking good....


Also looks good when propped up...      Now to fabricate some brackets to weld under the roof to support the weight where the mounts sit...     This of course took a lot longer than I thought it would..  Measuring.. (twice) cutting and welding steel brackets to fit.


Brackets all finished...  Holes drilled and painted ready to be welded in place..   The most difficult part of this job was to line up all the pieces to drill the holes accurately...   Finally done.


Brackets all welded inside on the roof...  You cant see them here but the feet of the mounts are ready to be bolted to them..   I haven't yet done the final fitting as I need more Sika.   I want to seal those holes pretty well as I dont want them to leak...!!    But they look good.

Next I will bolt and glue down the mounts...  I won't need to put the solar panels up yet as I don't need the power in the truck yet..   they will follow down the track.

Stay tuned..

XC

Paint Work Re-Touched Shower Tray in Place May/June 2013

Posted by XenaCommander on June 10, 2013 at 7:50 PM Comments comments (0)

Three weeks off work...  yaay..!!  no travelling for a while so I wanted to make some progress with the truck..   I have been meaning to get the truck down to Marty again for some remedial work..  There were some small warranty issues he wanted to sort out but also I wanted some work done on some scratches I succeeded in inflicting on the rear as well as some rust work... and also to paint the white hot water cylinder cover...   So I had arranged with Marty to have the truck while I was away on retreat.  


An early morning start...  The pic above shows the truck parked outside the Waiouru museum while I went into cafe and fetched coffee and breakfast...

I got the truck to Marty and talked about the work wanted... and still managed to walk around to the bus stop and catch the bus back to Turangi.

Now the problem I had was I didn't have the truck that week to do any work..!!  duh..!  but I managed to tidy up the solar panel mounts and frames to take to Auckland to get galvanized and painted...   And also cleaned up the shed...  good work for a wet week.

After attending an 8 day Vipassana retreat I arranged pickup of the truck...  Marty hadn't quite finished it to pick up on the Tuesday after queens birthday so I took a bus down on Wednesday.


Not a good pic...  esp with my shadow holding iPad up... and clothes line in foreground...!!   but truck back on pad in Turangi paintwork all refreshed... I actually hooked it up to the trailer to take this pic and move the trailer forwad a little so I could open the back door.


Note the hot water cylinder cover..   Looks much nicer when painted the same colours as the truck...  very cool.

I wanted to achieve something else this week so took the floor up to work out how I was going to run the plumbing from the shower to the grey tank...   sounds straight forward but realised there was a chicken and the egg situation re how to fit the pipes to the shower drain...  I placed the shower in place and measured and cut the hole for the drain...   Fortunately it missed the cross member chassis rail so I didn't need major surgery with that...   However the outlet wasn't easily accessible from under the truck and not easy to get to with the floor down.

So I decided to cut the floor around the shower and permanently screw that down and then with the rest of the floor up I would be able to reach under and attach the pipe to the shower outlet...   or maybe enroll the lean arms of TK to reach under the shower...   But at least it is possible to access. 

I made a frame for under the shower tray and glued it to the tray so it sits level and will drain..   I will spray some foam underneath to firm it all up.


Shower in place...  Tick..   once foam is done I will fit it permanently and run the pipes.

Back to work this week and will pick up the solar panel mounts and frames...   Next job to fit them to the roof.

Stay tuned.

XC

Gas Cupboard & Solar Panel Mounts Feb-Apr 2013

Posted by XenaCommander on April 8, 2013 at 4:00 AM Comments comments (0)


The above pic was taken Yesterday at Lake Otamangakau where we went for a lunch picnic..   I thought it was about time I posted an update of progress done over the last couple of months...   Mostly I have been travelling to Aus each week...!  but the weekends I can get down I have made some slow progress.. 

It was time to clean out the cupboard where the gas bottles are going..  and also to get the gas lines run under the truck to the appliances..  


The cupboard required some serious work..  I had to weld supports under the floor...  and put a partition in the middle to create two spaces.. one for the gas bottles and one to store the generator if I get one...


The cupboard all cleaned up and painted...  Looks good...   I have room for the two 9kg bottles and a smaller 4 kg for the BBQ and emergencies...


The Gas Fitter came and ran the gas lines...   I was surprised that he ran two separate lines of copper pipe..  and just taped them together..  I decided to add some foam tubing around the lines where they go through the chassis rails or rub up against steel formers..   The truck will move around a lot and I didn't want the lines to chafe.


That should keep things all snug...   He will terminate them when the appliances are finally in place.

The solar panel mounts are the next thing on my list...  I wanted to fabricate them and mount them before finishing the insulation on the ceilings of the truck...    I had a design in mind to mount the panels flat.. but also allowed me to tilt them to the optimum angle for greater efficiency...   As I didn't have the technology to weld aluminium I decided to make them out of steel...  (Weight not being an issue with my truck..!!!)   A visit to the steel shop and I was set...


I had finished one frame and mount and have now mostly finished the "Bits" needed for the other three.. All I need to do now is weld them all together...


They will all end up looking something like this..  


The panel is hinged at the end of the frame...   I have propped the panel frame up here...  It will also hinge on the other side...    I will use gas struts to prop them up at the desired angle...

Once they are finished I will get them powder coated...

I also ran the remaining wires under the floor...  For the tank sensors.   Running them up to the panel.


Looking a bit tidier... 

So much to do I wish I had more time to work on it...   Oh well...  it is fun doing what I can...

Stay tuned for more...

XC


5 May 2013 Update...  More work on Panel Mounts.

My intention was to use gas struts to hold up the panels to the optimum angle...   A good idea but very expensive according to the Strut Man...   So I decided to fabricate some struts out of steel myself at the cost of $10 instead of the proposed $1600 the gas struts would have cost...  Gulp..!!!


Four finished struts sitting next to a solar panel mounted in a finished panel mount...


Panel lifted to optimum angle and braced with two struts...   I was going to use only one strut but it will be more secure in the wind with two.  


Looking good this side too.

Mission accomplished...  Now I need to fabricate 4 more struts then get everything powder coated.
Then the challenge of getting the mounts installed on top of the truck...!!

Stay tuned.

XC

More Foam, Plumbing and Electrics - Jan 2013

Posted by XenaCommander on January 23, 2013 at 9:10 PM Comments comments (1)

Foam Insulation Continues:

Thought I had better keep this updated..  I am getting people asking me what is happening...   I have been spending as much time as I can in the truck over the summer to feel like I am making some good progress..  And the results are starting to show.


A pic of the Foam insulation progress...   I hate spraying this stuff...  first of all I have to wait until the temperatures are right...  then suit up and spray without stopping..   If you stop it solidifies in the nozzle and I have to change it...    in the mean time I am losing weight by the kilo sweating in the suit..!!    Great fun..!!


Another shot further forward..   I am not going to finish the deckhead (ceiling for any land lubbers...) until I have mounted the solar panels...  

Plumbing being finalised...

You can see in the above pic that I have put back the water pipes in the walls..   I have hooked it all up including the hot water cylinder and turned the pump on..   I did forget one join and water went everywhere...!!!   Fixed that and the system pressures up nicely..   whew..!!


I lifted the floor again...  hopefully not for too many more times...   and ran the grey water waste pipes to the grey tank from the shower...  Vanity and washing machine..    I put in an extra U bend for a water lock in the line to save smells going back where they don't belong.


I also got a nice toilet tap so I can shut off the water when doing maintenance on the toilet...  The red and blue pipes that are looped back on themselves are for the vanity..  Yet to be installed...

12 Volt wires going in....

Note above the red wires..   I have started to string them from the main appliances..  this one is from the pump to the panel...   I have got some split conduit now and will put the wires in under the floor...


I have just pulled them up to the location of the panel for now...  with plenty of length to play with...    Note the boxes at the back of the truck..   the "Do Not Crush" box is the shower tray purchased this week which is the perfect size..   the box on the other side of the bench unit is the vanity..     More projects...

230 Volt Electric WOF

Last week I arranged with Dean at Powersafe to terminate all the 230 volt wires and issue me with an Electrical Warrant Of Fitness..    He is in Takanini so of course it was a good excuse to give the truck a good which it hasn't had for a while now..   On Sunday I drove the truck up to Auckland from Turangi.


On Tuesday I drove to Takanini and parked behind Deans Powersafe shop..  He drove his tool box and parked next to the door and spend a few hours terminating all the wires I had already pulled..    I hate electrics..  especially 230volt..   I have had a few whacks from it in the past so I treat it with respect...  So it was great to have Dean do this work..   
With accompanying man talk we solved the problems of the world while he twisted, cut and screwed the ends of all these wires...  Ending in a reasonably tidy panel.


All done..   


Labelled up so I know how to drive it...   Pretty simple I can run on shore power..  or inverter...  or Generator if I plug generator into external plug... 

I drove the truck around to the front of his shop and ran a cable to the "Plug In" socket and he tested all the plug sockets..   All good after a quick fix on the only one I terminated in the battery charger cupboard...

Then the paper work...   and a milestone met..   The truck now has an Electrical Warrant Of Fitness and enables me to take it to a caravan park or holiday park..     Not that I want to but I can plug it in to the shed in Turangi and save me running a lead.

I drive the truck back to Turangi this weekend so the Gas Fitter can run his copper pipes next week..   So much to do... 

Stay Tuned..

XC

Hot Water Cylinder and Foam Insulation starts - December 2012

Posted by XenaCommander on December 16, 2012 at 7:45 PM Comments comments (0)

It has been a few months now since I posted progress on the truck..   Reason being that there hasn't been much progress.   Most of the last few months I have been travelling to Australia each week.   As much as it is a nice place the novelty wears off very quickly when you are there every week..!!

I have been coming down in weekends and do the odd job on the truck but I am often too exhausted to do much.  Last week I had a week off and wanted to make some progress on jobs on top of the list.    First I had to install the hot water cylinder I had purchased before I started to spray insulation in the walls.

I hate cutting holes in the truck..   after the great job Marty did it is always a nerve wraking job to cut a hole in it..  But I needed to do this.   I finally arrived at a location for the Cylinder so measured very carefully...


Measure again...  and again..    Mask up the edges to reduce damage to the good paint work.


More masking to protect the paint..  Knowing my record I am likely still to damage the surface..   We shall see...


Big breath...  Now be careful....  I hate getting steel in my eye so now wear a full mask...


Hole complete withouth any major damage to the paintwork...   Now to see if the cylinder fits.  Fingers crossed.


First glue and weld the frames around the opening...   Here is where I made the mistake..  I used the clamps without putting protective layer on paint so did make a couple of marks..   Mumble..   Will have to get Marty to fix.


Cylinder slides into the hole nicely...  Shown here it is only temporarily fitted.   I needed to put the braces on the floor inside and screw the floor down permanently.   So job pretty much done for now.    I need to find a Gas Fitter to hook it up.

First Foam Insulation Goes On.
I have done some research about which insulation to use in the truck and I always came back to the spray on closed cell foam insulation being the most efficient..  Of course it is also the most expensive..  Typical...    But I only want the best...   I could have taken it to a Plasticraft Foam Applicator and had the job done but decided to save money and do it myself with the Kits they provide.   A good idea but....

I got the first kit and was keen to just get on and spray it on..   But then I read the instructions and learnt that temperatures are critical and had to work out a way to warm the cylinders to a useable temperature.  What I did was made a hotbox out of a tea chest lined with fibreglass bats and foam...  Then put the two cylinders in it then wrapped them in an electric blanket with a sensitive thermostat.   It Worked..!!!  Yes..!!

Also the walls had to be the same temperature so purchased an infrared thermometer to measure temperature easily..  Easy...!

On a warm day I worked out the temperatures were all good so now was the time..   I dressed up in overalls and face mask and gloves and had a go...


What a horrible job...  very difficult to get the correct coverage..  I guess it will get better with practice..   I managed to get through the whole kit but didn't feel I had made a lot of progress...   The stuff is amazing it expands quickly and heats up as it does so.  Very hot.


The end of the first Kit..   The closer I got to the end of the container the more erratic the coverage was...  It turns into something that looks like popcorn..   but still covers ok..   Above the window it peeled away from the wall.  I wasn't sure why but after a phone call to Plasticraft learnt that it was likely a temperature difference.   That spot was a bit cooler than the rest of it as it was shaded outside.  I will remedy that with next kit.


XC on Kit number 2...  next fine day with temperatures all good...  The stuff drips down when spraying above.   After two kits done and 4 more in the shed I am now hoping I have enough to do the whole truck...!!  

Back to Auckland for the week before Christmas..   More to come.

Stay tuned..

XC

If you read further down this blog you will see that the images have disappeared.   The Webshots site I use to strore the photos has been sold and the new site has a different address for the photos which is a pain..  Now I have to reselect the images again..   I will get it done as soon as I have time.

 

Battery Tray Fabrication - July 2012

Posted by XenaCommander on July 23, 2012 at 5:10 AM Comments comments (0)

I had accumulated so much annual leave it was about time I took some time off..   This break I decided to take on a 10 Day Vipassana Meditation Retreat out at Kaukapakapa...  I haven't done one for ten years so it was about time I did.   Maybe I will write up some thoughts about it ...  But not here apart from saying that everyone would benefit from one of these... If you are interested or curious check out their website.

After I came out of retreat I decided to spend a few days down in Turangi working on the truck.   I decided to construct the battery tray.   I had purchased the sliders from Aus...  Very strong ones that would carry the 227kg of batteries that I am planning to use.

The cupboard where I am putting the batteries is not very big... Yet the four batteries will fit in... Just...  I checked out commercial trays but they wouldn't fit so I had to design my own...   The iPad came in handy...  I figured I couldn't put the slides on the side of the tray as then the tray would be too small...  So I devised a plan to put the sliders on rails under the tray...   Now some creative fabricating.


More cutting and grinding steel to the required sizes....


My favourite part...   Welding the bits together...


Hanging up for painting...


Assembling slides to the rails then rails to the tray...


Tray all finished and ready to install into cupboard..


The most difficult job..  Drilling holes in the floor of the cupboard to bolt down the slider rails...  Not easy.. Banging my head and getting stuck a couple of times...  It must have been a sight...  I am glad TK wasn't around with the camera...   This is the end result...  Slider fully extended.


Front view... 


View from the rear...


Mission accomplished...  It took a little longer than I thought it would but it was fun and I am pleased with the result..    Not that I am ready for the final batteries yet but at least I can put in a temporary battery and connect up the wires that you can see hanging ready.

A couple more wires to run to the switch board before I get the truck insulated....

Stay tuned...

XC


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