Monday, September 21, 2009

Door of Perception

Molly's door was in bad shape. The interior panel had peeled in places (water intrusion), and the frame's welds had broken in two places. After an embarrassing interlude spent applying bondo and JB Weld, it dawned on me that this was aluminum. Being aluminum, the surface was slippery and no amount of glue was gonna hold. It would need welding. Luckily, in the next town over, a small farming center, I located a fellow who said he could weld aluminum. I tossed the frame parts into my trailer and pedaled over. He took a look and said "Fifty dollars." That sounded fair to me. Now Molly's door frame is solid.

By the way, about the door molding you see coiled on the door. I saved a sample of the old, crumbling one and took it to Guaranty RV Parts Department here in town. The guy behind the counter wrinkled his nose and told me to wait. He disappeared into the back for a while, just long enough for my two boys to become restless. When he reappeared, he held this coil of self-adhering rubber molding. "I only have sixteen feet," he reported. Coincidentally, that was how much I needed. Things were looking good. I figured I'd spend $20 here, then go buy some hose and maybe a... "That'll be ninety-six dollars." NINETY-SIX DOLLARS?! For sixteen feet of rubber? But I was cool. Didn't ruffle a feather. I gave him the last of my money and carried the coil outside. On the sidewalk an older gent who had been behind me when in the store asked, "How do you feel?" I said the only word that made any sense: raped. He grinned. That probably cost them ten bucks. You're lucky you got out with both your children."

So, I had a vision... Air Stream vision. What if I went bare metal and buffed it out? How would it look? If it didn't look good, it was just my time. So I drilled out the old rivets and...

...went to work.

Reassembled, and the window frame sprayed (I didn't stay with the red, but went green instead):

I was pleased. Here's the finished product:

And installed (with Eternabond and SS screws):

The frame and hinges were acid cleaned, wire brushed and painted metallic silver.

Molly is now officially dried in. I want to thank father-in-law Bob for the SS antenna base. It's installed, along with 14 LED lights. Winter rains, here we come!

One final shot of Molly's new batwing antenna: