Saturday, April 09, 2011

Oh Melvin!

Evidently restoring vintage airstream (1940’s and 1950’s) is a rising trend. One website likened it to people restoring old 60’s and 70’s mustangs in their garages. There are a slew of companies out there that carry authentic airstream parts, furnaces, upholstery, whathaveyou. And people who are into restoring them (not unlike those that restore old cars) are seemingly obsessed with it and very much into restoring their campers back to their former glory down to the tiniest of details.
That’s just fantastic. If they want to do that, go for it. What I want to know is what about those of us that seem to be renovating their camper out of necessity? My poor Melvin has gone a long time without a major overhaul (ok the furnace is blown out so the previous owner put in a propane heater, and some of the wiring has been redone. That’s about it, though). And like any abode he needs one.
As you know, I’ve spliced the electrical cable that supplies me with power so it works again. The manfriend has replaced the kitchen faucet that finally gave out. I’ve replaced a few bulbs and whatnot here and there.
And then there’s the water heater and the general bathroom floor issues.
And also as you know, my battle with the water heater has been an ongoing one. The manfriend has tweaked it, I have replaced the pressure relief valve, and the seal around the hatch thingy has been replaced (the wind kept whipping through and blowing out the pilot light).
I got home this past Monday to a good 2 inches of water on the floor in the bathroom. Like any good blogger, I promptly went outside to call my mom in a fit instead of taking any pictures. I went with my levelheaded manfriend’s advice (thankfully someone has a level head more often than not. I used to, but I don’t know what happened...) and drilled holes in the floor to let it drain out. The good news is the metal plates under the bathroom of the camper (the whole thing is literally a sealed pod, remember) are rusted out at the seams and the water could actually drain out onto the ground. Oh yeah. Melvin’s had some leaking issues for a while it seems.
So I got the carpet pulled up, the holes drilled, and the water drained out. But the thing is the damn thing wouldn’t get dry. And I couldn’t find where exactly the leak was. All the water lines converge behind and to the right of the toilet – right above the water heater. So I took out the toilet. The toilet was sinking into the rotted floor wood on one side anyway, causing it to leak, and would have needed to come out anyway. The majority of the water seemed to be pooling up around the water heater – which is uphill (the bathroom sags, you see…) from the toilet and therefore kind of weird – and as I can’t find a working shutoff to the heater I came to the conclusion that I would have to turn off the water. Again.
I am hoping against hope that it’s just a connection to or from the heater that the seal busted on and not something internal necessitating a replacement of the whole thing. The floor in the bathroom already needs to be replaced – I literally hadn’t fallen through the floor as the toilet was resting on the holding tank where the wood had rotted away – and I don’t really relish the idea of having to shell out more cash for a heater. On the other hand, since I am evidently incapable of getting a job here, I will most likely be living in Melvin longer than anyone thought and I personally like having running water. And on days that I feel particularly bratty, hot running water.
So fingers crossed, people. The manfriend is coming out at some point this weekend to suss it out. And hopefully get at least my cold water running again.
And all of this just in time for my mom coming back!! She will be here for a few weeks to help out and will be arriving on April 16th. Woot! I hope that she will get to experience Melvin with running water – she never has!
Yeah. Hence the removal.


Kerri said...

Oh. What a truly horrid job.

But the gold shag carpet is really fun! ;)

caitlinvb said...

Yes. The manfriend will be compensated. And THANKFULLY the gold shag is only on the sides of the bathroom under the counters. The rest of the camper is mottled rust, orange AND gold shag. It's spectacular! (to its credit, it hides dirt REALLY well. A little too well....)