Hold my beer and watch me renovate this... part 3
Updated: May 23, 2019
We have come a long way so far. You've made it through the renovation and are on the last leg. I will attempt to get you through the last leg of this race as best as possible. This part was also one of the best things for us because we were finally done and ready to take on our road trip. We needed to finish up the living room and dining room area as we knew that they were going to be the most utilized space. First priority was the pantry.
Lowes had a great selection for us to choose from when it came to standing pantries. We finally decided on one and brought it home. This thing was the perfect fit for size and capacity for us. The only negative of it would be that would add a chunk of weight to the right side but we would manage it smartly. The table followed another design we were using with the connectors for Abby's bed. The table top I found a much cheaper butcher block board to match the kitchen. It didn't match exactly, but worked out none the less. I put the slats together with pocket holes, and then put it up on the table top poles. Final addition after finding it not so stable was three long boards against the wall by the window. These I also used pocket holes to the table and the deck for more stability and also connected the table to the pantry to prevent swaying while driving. It all actually worked out really well.
I wanted to add this in if you're planning on doing this or putting a pantry in. We learned that these shelves do not like to stay on the pegs when you're rolling down the road. Who knew this would happen?! Oh yea...everyone. I don't know why it didn't really occur to us while doing this to put in some extra support. So while we were at a camp ground (I think it was Niagara Falls for some reason) I used the Craftsman drill with the saw blade attachment and cut some shelf supports. Jennie had mentioned adding shelf stoppers so things wouldn't slide forward so easily. This made a whole lot of sense after I put them in. We attached them with pocket hole screws to the shelf and they have held nicely. Attaching the supporting brackets was a bit of a challenge due to the availability of space under the shelves. I basically attached the middle ones to themselves through the wall and the outer ones shorter but thicker screws. It has held up now for several thousand miles with no issues. Please excuse the mess. I was in a hurry. But you can see that these shelves are weighted down nicely. Oh, the baskets drilled into the support arm was a smart add. It was shelf basket.
The couch was the next obstacle that we needed to tackle. Jennie had found a really good one that would work with several of our needs. Needed to have storage under the cushions, comfortable, and needed to fit through the RV door. In case you didn't know this already, those doors are narrow. Not a simple task trying to get furniture in there. She found a good one through Home Reserve which makes adaptable furniture. It was a bit tricky to build but not impossible. The only annoyance was getting the fabric over the catchy wood but again, not impossible and not super aggravating. Only thing we didn't love was the seat bottoms move a lot and not with traveling, just getting up and down from the couch. Found a work around by replacing the wood with my own. All good. Another great thing is that they will send you replacement parts as needed. This to me made even more sense with us constantly moving. After a year, its done us pretty good. I secured it to the floor with U-Bolts and nuts into the bottom storage compartment. It surely isn't moving. The seat belts I put right back where they were through the original holes. No adjustments necessary but it it was, that's just a hole to drill through wood. Oh....FYI, if you have a generator compartment that sits under your couch/kitchen you cannot (should not) drill through it as there is a fire wall there. I know, common sense (which isn't alway common).
A touch that we had not completed during this renovation that I think was important and we added a year later was a leaf to the kitchen counter. We had originally planned on this but ran out of time and to be honest, I was not getting it to work the way I had envisioned. After some thinking and planning, I finally got it to work. We used the butcher block that we had put aside (the chunk from sink removal) and set it up. A heavy duty hinge was put on the counter side to hold the weight of the swaying and a small board on hinge was put on the wall as the foot. The problem I had was getting it to sit flush but thankfully Jennie and my cousin Lucas solved it with a common sense approach. I was way too in the weeds with that thing. So we cut out a notch and it worked out just right.
So while all of this was going on, Jennie was doing the hard work. She had painted the entire interior a bright white. The wood on the cabinets apparently were quite thirsty as they drank several applications of paint to get it to look right. We swapped all of the old hardware out with new ones thanks to Lowes! Yes, Lowes was the primary helper with all of this renovation. I should have bought some stock before this task. Sorry, I digress. She added base boards to every wall. Now, this was a task I am truly glad I didn't get into. I watched her take these tiny boards with brad nails and put them up. I sadly would have destroyed them from frustration and missing, but she crushed it. They really did compliment the rig nicely and made it more of a home. She picked up black out curtains for the living room and our bedroom then took the time to cut and sew them to the right size. I can sew, but this was a whole new level of stuff i've never done. I have been thankful for them every single day. These things keep the bedroom and living room super dark after the sun comes up. They also help out quite a bit in keep thing heat down in the house. A very nice addition during those summer scorchers.
We are finally at the end of the renovation! It is done, fin, complete and we couldn't be happier. Doing all of this work really put Rex how we wanted it to be. We knew we would make adjustments while traveling and find more bugs along the way but we were ready. Our confidence in our abilities had grown and we made some good memories getting it done. So without further delay, I give you pre and post renovation:
Hope you enjoyed the story and learned from some of our mistakes. It was a great task and we are still going. Will post more as we make changes.