Saturday, May 26, 2012

The Roof and Front is Framed

As you can see I finished the framing on the curve that composes the front and roof of the trailer. For this I ripped 2X4s on my table saw to make boards that are 1 1/2" by 1 1/2" then I cut them all to the same length. They are spaced about 16 inches apart. I fastened them in place by applying gorilla glue to the ends and screwing a 3 1/2 inch wood screw from the outside of the trailer into the center of the board. before placing the screw I drilled a pilot hole and countersunk the screw hole so the top of the screw is slightly recessed. This way I can fill the screw head recesses with bondo when I finish the exterior. After these boards were screwed in place I can feel a significant difference in the strength of the whole unit. It now feels really solid when you grab hold and try to shake it.

I also started work on the galley. I will make a slide out tray for the cooler and just above it will be another one for the camp stove.  The compartment on the right side will eventually have three drawers and there will be a fourth drawer in the space above the water container. I have never made drawers before so that will be an adventure. The counter top is made from 3/4 inch plywood. I glued a 1 1/2 by 3/4 inch strip of oak to the front of the counter top to give it better hardness against denting. I will finish the counter top by applying a thick coating of transparent epoxy. This will produce a hard surface to protect the wood against scratches and dents.

I made a change to the shape of the trailer on the fly as I was building. Now I have applied the change to the drawing shown above. I made the trailer somewhat taller than I originally drew it. To maximize the use of my lumber I decided to make the trailer 1 1/2 sheets high (six feet) . I have corrected the drawing so now the photographs of the project look more like the CAD drawings. I'm 6'4" and I want to be able to sit up in the trailer so I figure I can use the extra height.

I should point out also that I spent a couple of hours today sanding the curves of the walls before I did the framing. When cutting curves with a hand jigsaw it is easy to deviate from the line by 1/16" or more. I bought some 60 grit paper for my orbital sander and worked the edges all the way around until I had sanded out all of the non-uniformities and made the curves smooth.

I have pasted below the drawing of the wall frames without the skin so that you can see the framing details for the walls. In this view you can also see the 14 inch square frame in the top for the ventilation fan.

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