I’m sitting on the couch at home Friday afternoon, enjoying some downtime to catch up with Jen. I put in a solid four days’ work this week, pausing only because we’re out of things I can do myself and Brian is jammed up with other paying work that needs to be done. But we made some solid progress this week.

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I rode out to Chestertown on Monday and met up with Brian to pick up the keys to the shed at noon. By 1PM I’d pulled the bus out and dusted off my trusty Hitachi hand planer—the one I used to plane the floor in the kitchen all those years ago—and got the whole floor leveled off. Then I cut and built a couple of screens for the windows; Schoolbuses don’t come with screens and they’ll need them where they’re traveling.

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On Tuesday Brian and I made a plan to get the materials we’d need for the floor and for the roof rack, which required a trip to Wilmington, Delaware to pick up raw steel. After a tasty lunch at a taqueria, we grabbed the steel and were back by the early afternoon. We unloaded the steel, plywood, and other stuff, got the tools out and cut the rack together.

We’ve been chasing vendors for various elements for a while now, and finally got word back from the rooftop tent guy who will be starting production soon. The seats have been the other big question mark, and the original vendor there does not offer specifications or any detail on the website other than an eye-watering price. We did some more digging after dinner and I found a competitor who offers multiple sizes at a much lower price point—with measurements and specifications. Imagine that!

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Wednesday we took that knowledge back to the bus and mapped out different seat sizes in blue tape on the floor. Brian hooked up the generator to the welder and attempted to tack the rack together but he wasn’t getting enough juice, so we punted on that. Matthew and Robbi came by to look things over and we agreed on a size and layout which gives us a direction; with this and the size of the rear bedding we know how much space we’ve got for the rest of the area. We continued cleaning up the interior to prep for the floor install until quitting time.

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On Thursday I was on my own, but that was fine; I loaded up some podcasts and got to work installing  plywood over the original floor. By about 12:30 I was done, and broke for some lunch out by the water to cool off. Then I climbed up onto the roof to measure out and find the angle we’ll need for the feet on the roof rack. When I knew that I hopped back down and built two screens until I ran out of supplies. It was 3:30 and I was hot and sweaty. Things were supposed to cool off after the rain but with the humidity it was still in the low 90’s. I closed things up and headed back to Brian’s, where we examined three steel storage boxes that arrived via UPS, and looked like they’d been dropped off the back of the truck. After cooling off, we agreed there wasn’t much else to accomplish until we had more supplies and Brian had time, so I loaded up and headed back home to see the girls.

Next week we’re going to install the storage boxes and find a way to hang the generator; that’s probably going to eat up a lot of time until we get the method down. Then maybe we’ll get the flooring in place.

Date posted: September 17, 2021 | Filed under general | Leave a Comment »

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