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JaySam

Toyota Advanced Member
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About JaySam

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    Super Member

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  • My Toyota Motorhome
    1985 Toyota Sunrader
  • Location
    Colorado

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  1. Thanks guys, I'm pretty pleased with how it turned out. Also learning about the wonderful world of varnishing and the pitfalls of it all. I glued furring strips along the front, one the entire length above the windows about 1" and another below the windows 1", and a strip down the middle connecting the two. Then I screwed the cedar planking into those. The bottom slope of cedar isn't screwed into anything, the upper lip slides under the furring strip and along the bottom I used a few screws to tack it down. I put 2" board foam underneath for a bit of support and warmth. I used a gorilla glue similar to liquid nails but that is rated for fiberglass, it's holding up really well. Same glue I used for the roof rafters. The sides are just held in with the window frames. I did replace the trim, I used 3/4" as well. I ordered it off amazon. Installation tip, do it when it's hot out. I tried when it was cold and I about wrecked my fingers, once it warmed up it was pretty easy. As for the screws I had the same problem, probably half of them were rusted and stripped out. I just left em, hit em with silicone and moved on with life. I also painted a layer of polyester resin along the inside at the screw joint, as well as grinded down any screws poking through. Glad to hear you passed your inspection and can hopefully get on the road soon. I have resorted to building a temporary setup so I can begin to use it for work through the summer, which will give me time to plan and think through all the final versions of what I'm going to build and how to install all the systems back in. For now it's nice being able to stand up, have lights on a switch and real ceiling fans for airflow.
  2. Managed to get the cabover area pretty much done except for filling in the gap and some minor detail work, now I'll start working on the main cabin and figuring all that out.
  3. No worries Rick! Looks like it was quite the pain but you were successful in the end! I think I have a similar problem in the rear that the floor has sagged over one of the top shock bolts, but for now I'm leaving those problems for another time haha. Glad you were able to work through those problems and get it fixed.
  4. Hey Rick, I don't think the grey water tank adds any floor support. On my it contributed to the floor destruction and the immense sagging I have on either side as it's really just pulling down on the floor all the time. Really wish they hadn't mounted all the water tanks on the least supported part of the vehicles floor, but i've really been wishing they did a lot of things different as I rebuild this thing. Wish in one hand shit in another..... Definitely sounds like they're just trying to rack up the bill on you, brakes and shocks are legit, sticky doors are definitely not. The loose black water tank could be considered safety if they feel it's going to fall off the vehicle while driving down the road but I highly doubt that's the case. Anyway good luck with everything regarding inspection, what a nightmare!
  5. Man Rick sorry to hear it, that sounds like quite the headache! I removed all the tanks in my Sunrader (easy and took maybe 20 minutes to do em all) and all of them had bolts going through the floor from the top to the metal strap underneath Linda mentioned with a nut and washer holding it on. If for some reason the bolt head inside the coach going through the floor isn't visible or is underneath a layer of wood you can tighten from the bottom by grabbing the bolt with vise grips and then a wrench on the nut. As for the other mechanical stuff none of that is too difficult or complicated (although I've only done rear brakes on single axle, don't know if dually's are different or harder for some reason) but you do have to be able to walk through the steps, crawl under vehicles, break rusted bolts etc etc. If you only need shoes and drums on the rear that's a lot simple than replacing everything like the proportioning valve and stuff like that. Shocks aren't too tough, maybe youtube a few vids and see if you feel up for it. More about getting into the spots and breaking old rusty bolts than anything technical. I have lucked out that mechanically mine seems to be in pretty good shape. I picked it up in Oregon, floored it in 3rd all the way back to Colorado doing 75 over 3 days and didn't have a single issue with it. Since back I've only done some minor things like transmission cooler, oil change and radiator flush. Passed inspection fine, but we just need emissions. Luckily my 'sticky doors' didn't fail me. Here's a pic of the 4 bolt heads for the black water tank as I was removing everything.
  6. Nice Job Rick, your rig is really coming together and looking beautiful. I've managed to get the ceiling installed with the lights and insulation. Something is actually kinda sorta done, although I won't be surprised if i revisit it at some point. Working on the cabover area now, I've gotten the side panels built and will begin tackling the front area next.
  7. Well it seems like I've hit a major milestone. All the repairs and upgrades to the infrastructure have been completed. Finished up on the roof two days ago and received the last vent cover I needed yesterday which I installed. I'm ready to start moving onto the interior build, gluing in furring strips now for attachment points. It'll be nice to move from fixing and repairing to building and designing.
  8. That's funny Rick, I've been feeling the exact same way. Wake up, coffee, sunrader, shower, dinner, tv, bed. And again. Which I gotta say although it gets a little monotonous it's also nice to have a bit of a routine and to just keep pressing forward. Anyway your rig is looking great, really nice work on everything so far. Are you completely sold on painting the wood panel or have you considered stain/finish?
  9. These toyota motorhomes are awesome, small, unique and offer a good living space. They definitely can be worth buying. Unfortunately you'll probably have to do something along the lines of a gut and rebuild if you buy one that hasn't been rebuilt already which is the place myself and a few others have found themselves in after recently purchasing Sunraders. Which is all well and good if you have the time, money, skills and patience to rebuild a camper. Oh and if your not looking to use it for the next 6 months to a year. I was in a very similar situation to you last winter looking for a full time rig; I have been living in my truck camper for the last 2 1/2 years and I was looking for an upgrade. Working and living in boulder I am surrounded by beautiful Sprinter and Promaster build outs everywhere I turn. Like you stated they are far too expensive to justify themselves unless you've got cash you're looking to throw away. I've also heard the Promasters shit out around 80,000 and Sprinter maintainance is insanely expensive (like $300 an oil change expensive) Probably your most economical and fastest option to build out will be some type of work van or truck, which would depend on if you want to stand up or not. A truck with a popup or hard sided camper is another option, or you can buy a truck and build your own cabover camper which is where I originally started. I tried for the option your considering now; I bought a 18' Sunrader hoping that I would just have to fix up a few things and be on my way to better living. I tried to verify everything about the vehicle before purchase including sagging floors and roof, but you can only check so much until you tear it apart. Unfortunately when I got it home I found a rotten floor and a sagging ceiling, which has led me into an entire gut and rebuild of the thing. It's costing me a lot of time and money which I didn't really have to spare, but I've made my bed Here's a pic of the first camper I built and have lived in for over 2 years. I have a heater, stove and a small sink. I also live at my work with a shower and bathrooms so those weren't considerations for me. As WME stated, a LOT depends on your personal tolerance of living conditions. Another source to check is www.toyotarvforsale.com Also check craigslist in Oregon and Washington if you can travel to get it, for some reason there seems to be more toyota motorhomes up there than anywhere else. Beware rust, mold and water damage because of it though.
  10. I know I should, I'm just getting tired of having to redo every goddamn thing on this rig lol. I guess drilling out the rivets and putting in bolts isn't that much work, but man it'd be nice to actually get to building the interior one day. And then there's always the dream of actually using the thing, but I don't wanna get ahead of myself Hey Rick, how far out do your cabinets go from the sidewall?
  11. Right?! I've been constantly surprised and what amounts to "acceptable" on this thing.... of course I shouldn't be considering the rear axle issues they all felt comfortable sending people down the road with lol. Who cares about the ladder falling off when the wheels won't even stay on!
  12. The rivets are holding the ladder on. I thought about replacing them with bolts but then decided I'd just epoxy and glass over them to reinforce.
  13. They came with about 5 inches of wire on each side, which I then tied into a new line I ran from the passenger brake light all the way around through the front clearance lights. My wires had a decent amount of corrosion on the ends and the brake lights weren't even working originally so I decided to replace it all, as well as the connections to the rear light assembly. Everything is working as it should now thankfully. Those little t-connectors were a nice way to tie into a line and were pretty cheap as well. I'm not sure on a backup camera yet, if I do I thought I'd run the wire underneath the cab as I don't want too many wires buried too deep behind the walls preventing access. Never even pondered which one...are you going to add one and if so which? Will you run the cable inside the coach or outside? Now that I think of it it'd be nice to mount up high looking down like delivery vans do, vs low on the bumper or something which is what I was originally thinking. I also managed to seal everything up except the old water fill hole (i'm replacing with a locking unit) and the furnace vent hole which I dunno what I'm gonna do yet.
  14. Hey Rick, Yeah they're super easy, just a couple of mounting screws. I spent more time lining them up and making sure they looked straight and even than I did actually installing them. I had to fill in the old screw holes as my new lights didn't line up, but that was as complicated as it got. Jetalkington: Nice job on the fiberglass, came out great. And that screw trim looks really good, seems to install in a more 'even' fashion than the original stuff. You can see waves and bumps in mine where it doesn't seat as well or deformed when I pushed it in. I would guess for a 21' Sunrader you'd need 100ft as well, I just did my 18' and I used half of a 100ft roll. Also if you wanna redo any of the appliance access doors you'll definitely need more than 50ft.
  15. Interesting that our experiences have been so different with the Mr. Buddy heater. Maybe it's because of the space size, I was using mine in a camper which is maybe 200 cubic feet. In that small a space the fumes gave me headaches, I had the heater go out on more than one occasion due to low oxygen (with windows cracked) and my CO monitor would rise a bit. Conversely I've left the Camco on for 12 hours straight with no issues, and knew a couple who would leave theirs on 24 hours a day in the winter (with windows cracked) and never had an issue. The Mr. Buddy I was using as my primary heat source through the winter in Colorado, so I was using it a lot. Perhaps as a backup or occasional use it would be fine, or maybe it doesn't bother others the same way the smells bothered me. But good to know others haven't had the same issues, and it seems like it may just be due to the space I was using it in. Thanks for the additional info.
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