Week 4: 1976 Airstream Sovereign
Sitting with an extra dry gin martini (with a caper berry, my favorite), to soothe the adrenaline rush and relax myself after the past weekend of crazy. It's been absolutely pouring here, just buckets and buckets of rain. Much of the Midwest is under flood warnings, and we are no exception. Rain poured into part of our basement (luckily far from where we're storing renovation supplies), and onto our backs as we stepped out and back into the Airstream repeatedly. I even found myself (not wanting to lose any more time due to the storms) on my hands and knees scrubbing window frames as the skies unleashed. The thunderstorms brought lightning, which dampened our efforts at times, and overall, the rain always contributes to slowed productivity when working on an Airstream, as the lines between indoor and outdoor are so blurred. Yet we pushed through and pushed on, and had an incredible weekend to be proud of.
Friday night we took off, per the usual - our one night off per week to recuperate, be together as a family, or hang with our people. We spent time with our amazing friends, Scott and Erin, and their brood of girls. Lots of wine and the most amazing salmon (flown in fresh from Alaska) and such good conversation. We are going to miss them so much!
We were up bright and early Saturday morning to strong thunderstorms, making a Lowe's run for some electrical supplies and then crossing some items off our personal to-do list while we waited for the lightning to slow. As soon as the dangerous weather cleared, we hit the Airstream work hard. We worked consistently the rest of the weekend, taking breaks only to eat and sleep, with serious focus and determination. Knowing we've had this Airstream for one month and have only two months left to finish is pretty good motivation to kick it into gear and get shit done.
Here's what we've been working on since we last checked in:
- Finished installing/riveting in ceiling panels
- Installed remaining patches
- Cleaned the skins thoroughly
- Custom cut aluminum for both end caps and installed
- Installed electrical boxes (in skins only)
- Wired in 35 DC recessed lights and 2 custom made swing arm DC sconces, installed
- Installed/wired AC outlets
- Installed/wired DC switches (in skins only)
- Cleaned and installed window frames/screens
- Reinstalled door frame
- Painted window frames
- Cut aluminum to square and installed Fantastic Fan framing (link below to the fan model we love)
- Reinstalled AC unit and ceiling assembly
- Installed four Furrion speakers
- Cleaned and prepped for floor installation
Most of this work was done in the past two days, starting at the DC lighting in the above list. The end caps, along with priming and painting, took about a week. We've been surprising ourselves, quite honestly, with our ability to keep at this work at such a fast clip. Hard to believe that just two weeks ago, we were finishing up insulation and installing interior skins, or that just one mere month ago, we were gutting and taking out interior skins and wiring to start fresh.
Thanks to Airparts, Inc. for the aluminum for our custom end caps - we ordered the 60-inch width this time around and just loved the flexibility it gave us in cutting those curves for this project. While the end caps aren't a quick project, we love how they open up and modernize the space instantly, as opposed to reusing the original molded plastic from the 70s. We think a lot of folks make the originals look fantastic, we just prefer the open, clean look for our Airstreams.
On another note of gratitude, this one is for you all: thank you for hanging in there, guys. Our tight turnaround on this project, along with finishing up our current jobs, limits time to produce content (and respond to comments/emails) significantly. We can't thank you enough for your patience with us!
Until next time, folks.