After the shakedown cruise it was time to get down to business.
Taking stock. A more careful, methodical poking around to come up with an initial list of what needed to be done, and in what order. Here's just a peek at what we found:
This, I guess, could be filed under "Well intentioned, but stupider than shit." The previous owners were fond of the desert, and they understandably wanted some shade, like from a nice awning. The Nomad had no awning, so they found one for sale and bolted it on.
After removing the drip edging from the curbside roofline so they could get it to fit. Screw in a couple of eye bolts front and rear, wrap a couple of bungie cords around the support arms, no problem, lovely awning.
And as long as you stay in the desert where it never rains, you probably don't even mind that you've left a nine foot long hole for water in the top of your rig. And added thirty-two new bolt holes in the roof that you didn't bother to seal. And added about a hundred and fifty extra pounds to one side of a structure made out of rotting balsa wood and held together with spit and bailing wire.
And there was more.
One of the things that wood likes to do when you soak it is to swell. Here's the street side front corner where the whole seam has split from top to bottom, letting in yet more moisture and crap.
Here you can see the trailer end power cord, wrapped in duct tape. Why? Because the cord is too long and drags on the road as you drive. If you look closely, you can see another bungie cord that was used in an attempt to keep it off the asphalt. It probably worked okay for a while, until the cord got old and saggy.
Checkin' out from undaneat.
Here you can see our blackwater tank. If you look near the frame by the wheel you can see a big glob of runny sealant on the tank, and another one in closer to the midline.
If a little sealant is good, a lot has got to be better!
Despite all this globby mess, she still leaks nasty shitwater.
This. Is. Bad.
I look around there, trying to figure out how to pull the tank without having to rip out the floor above it, but I'm stumped. This is going to take someone with a little more knowledge than I've got.
On and on like this. I'll spare you the rest of it.
So, here's the plan we came up with:
- Take her someplace to get the wheel bearings, brakes, axle, tongue, hitch, and electrical sorted.
- Get the propane system inspected.
- Get the blackwater tank replaced.
- Get the heater, hot water heater, pump, and toilet inspected.
- Get her legal in California.
After that comes the stuff we can do ourselves:
- Replace interior foam and upholstery.
- Replace dining table.
- Rebuild front gaucho and rear dining seats/bed platform.
- Remove rear top storage shelf for more headroom for the man.
- Replace trailer end plug and cord.
- Eventually, rip out the whole rear wall and rotted overhead. Reframe, put in new siding, new insullation, seal up the holes.
- Take off the awning and repair the roof, replace the drip edging, replace the worn out vents, make her sound and watertight.
- Then tackle the front end, same thing: skin off, demo the wall, replace paneling, framing, insulation, reskin her.
- Scrape, wirebrush, prime and repaint the frame, tongue, and rear bumper.
- Replace the propane tanks, or get these inspected and repaint them.
- Replace awning with a light-weight vintage style awning.
- Paint the interior and exterior once she's all shipshape.
- New flooring.
- New water heater to replace non-functional, thirty year old original which is no longer manufactured and I can't find parts for.
- New Shur-flo water pump.
- New toilet.
- New cabin heater or rebuilt the original.
- New inverter and solar panels to support longer-term boondocking.
That's about the size of it.
Wish us luck.