Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Back to the outside

I moved May outside again on the second to last day of March. After leaving the winter location that I had been renting since December ('09), she spent a couple of nights at our house, and I was able to give her a much needed bath. On April 2nd she was back at her summer home outdoors.

I have not been able to get too much work done since the move outside, but last weekend I did manage to take on the final stages of fabrication for the rear running lights. I am installing the tear drop lights that would have been the factory option in '64. I could not just install the lights, as a PO had installed oblong running lights, and this left screw holes wider than what the tear drop light could cover. Airstream installed the wiring even when the lights were not originally installed at the factory, and that is what happened with May, with the PO installing oblong running lights (my guess in the 70's). My solution is the aluminum "bezel" that I custom cut to match the shape of the teardrops. You can see what the pre-rivet completion looks like above. Thanks to buddy Dave who helped me fabricate and sand the edges on his belt sander.

I also tackled the mess under the rear drip cap that I removed. Please note that a heat gun, Acetone and Mineral Spirits are your friends. The drip cap was not original to the trailer, and the PO had drilled right through the Airstream nameplate. I had to contend with really thick Vulkem underneath the cap, clear coat that had not been removed, and then I polished it all. I also realized that I did not have the correct sized pop rivets for the nameplate, so they are now ordered, and on their way from Vintage Trailer supply. I will also plug the holes from the drip cap with stainless pop rivets (see below).

The below picture is taking a stepped back wider view of what I am working with. All three rear running lights will have bezels around them, and I will also do same on May's front. The aluminum tape covered the holes through the winter. Although the name plate is missing from this picture, it is ready to be installed again, just waiting for the aforementioned rivets.

We have a cold front that came in last evening, and we actually had snow just north of here. The sun is out, and the temps today will be in the 50's, so I am going to spend some hours polishing. Until next time!