Archive for the ‘Before photos’ Category

We dropped our 1974 Airstream Sovereign at M & M Truck Polishing on Thursday and picked up her tonight. M & M Truck Polishing is one of 3 or 4 truck polishing shops in Eloy, AZ, which is half way between Phoenix and Tucson. We found them originally through this post on Airforums.com.  Knowing they had past experience with Airstreams was huge for us. We have been wanting to polish Airstreamy since we got her. We even bought a bunch of polishing stuff, but never got around do doing it ourselves. So, in my instant gratification mode, I told Matt we needed to take the trailer down to Eloy ASAP.

We called a couple of other shops in Eloy to see what they would quote us for a price. One shop quoted us a super low price, but I wasn’t sure if they would stick to it and we hadn’t seen any of their work.  I was fairly certain that M & M wasn’t even around anymore, as the phone # on the building is disconnected and there is no photo number for them in the phone book. Luckily, as soon as we got to Eloy, we pulled into M & M and the guys happened to be there-SCORE! We agreed on a price and a timeline, then said goodbye to our old friend, Airstreamy. Her makeover is beyond amazing. I think they had 3 guys working on the polishing over a period of 5 days. My best guess is that there was at least 180 man hours in this polish job (5 days x 3 guys working 12 hour days).

If you want to take your trailer to M & M Truck Polishing, the main polisher there is Antonio and the phone # we have for the shop is 520-483-5571. E-mail me at Jennifer@TwinsAndCompany.com if you would like more info on pricing.

Here is what Airstreamy looked like when we dropped her off last Thursday:

We’ll be replacing all the blue trim and re-painting the lettering in the coming weeks.

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The old WBCCI numbers are gone, but we’ll get new ones when we join. Look at how bad the banana wraps were.

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They applied a diluted acid to help remove the clear coat before starting to polish.

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This was a quick area the guys showed us before we left her for her 5 night sleepover:

Here are some in progress photos:

When we dropped Airstreamy off on Thursday, Antonio wanted to show us just how shiny the finish could be.

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After just 1 pass with the clear coat still intact.

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Tools of the trade.




And, here the after shots from tonight, as M &M was wrapping up the polishing:


They even polished the wheels for us.



The letters are dirty, dirty. We’ll be cleaning them soon.








Airstreamy’s first selfie. 😉


Hibbard selfie!



Let’s talk about how dirty you get from polishing an Airstream. These guys deserve major moola for doing jobs like this:


This is Antonio, the main polisher. He is awesome.



How about some before and after shots?!

They were able to remove some dents from the front panels and banana wraps…how cool is that? Our banana wraps look SOOOOO much better.

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We’ll be spray-painting our LP tanks and hitch, so they look better against the polish. We also bought a Cyclo model 5 polisher, so we can get out a few swirl marks. The guys at M & M did an outstanding job-we would recommend them to anyone.

I’m in love with Airstreamy all over again! ❤

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We are still planning on having our maiden voyage to Malibu starting in under 2 weeks! I’ve been spending my evenings sewing curtains, cleaning and decorating Airstreamy. I’ll have a whole post on the curtains, once I get all the parts and have them installed. I am sewing in the black out fabric tonight, on all my panels. We still have some work needed to get the LP and water systems up and running. We had RSVP Mobile RV Service out yesterday and the owner, Joe, is awesome and very knowledgeable. He came out and hooked up our propane tanks (regulator and hoses) and installed our water heater. Joe is coming back out on Monday with another tech to get us fully connected to LP and water. We have a few issues in the lines that they will hopefully be addressing come Monday. Matt is on task to get the black and gray water tanks installed.

We ordered a stabilizer kit and a break connection for Matt’s Expedition, which are being installed on Monday.

Our propane tanks are in!

Matt helped rivet some of the bathroom trim back into place last night.

He also bought me some edgebanding to finish the trim in the bathroom.

Here is the epoxied counter and the metal trim that all needed edgebanding.

Here is an example of the finished edgebanding….I still have to caulk around all trim and find a way to get paint off of metal, without scraping it. I think I am going to try nail polish remover.

The old trim was yellowed and gross…along with everything else in the trailer. I just looked at a bathroom photo from when we bought Airstreamy….ew! One of the first things I did last year was rip out the old trim and epoxy all cabinet, sink and shower surfaces. The epoxy is holding up good. I had a few small nicks in the finish….one day I will get around to fixing them.

Check out this ‘before’ and a ‘current progress’  shot….still gotta caulk, clean and get the flooring down, but whoa!

I have been working on making our hotel on wheels feel more like a hotel than a trailer. I bought a rug and took some pillows, stackable chairs and a long tall table from my pool house to spruce things up. The table will be perfect for working on the computer, eating meals or setting stuff on.  It will have to move around, once the couch is extended to a bed, but it will wake a good night stand, too. Magically, all of the colors work with the curtain material I bought. I just set up 1 of the 2 front curtain panels to see how it would look….still waiting for our order from Inland RV, which has all our T and S hooks that we need to install them to the existing track. The other curtains are the ones that came with the trailer…can’t install the new ones until our parts come in. 😦

Lala likes to work in Airstreamy with me.

One of our pantry cabinet handles decided to stop holding the door in place last night….gotta find a replacement and figure out how to keep it shut on the road, in the meantime!

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So Christie and I decided to sleep in Airstreamy a few weeks ago. We got so excited about taking it out for trips that we wanted to know what it would be like! We turned the AC down to 60…..brrrrrr. We brought blankets, pillows, a TV, computer and popcorn out into the airstream for a movie night sleepover.  We watched Home Alone 2…..my favorite movie ever is Home Alone, but we misplaced the dvd. We even brought out some fall decorations. The funny thing is that there was no working water in the trailer, so we didn’t get the full experience of camping. I can’t wait until we have running water…faucets and toilet! I figure it will be pretty infrequent that we use the shower, but that will be fun, once it is hooked up.

We realized that we’ll need some good window coverings and lots of blankets, when we go camping for real in November. We have been planning our maiden voyage and booked our first RV location at Malibu RV Park. We have a whirlwind of stuff that we have to do before we take the trailer anywhere. We plan to visit family in Pasadena for Thanksgiving and spend a day at Disneyland (should be decorated for Christmas, as of November 12th!).

This is a photo of the Malibu RV Park….looks heavenly!

I am trying to find good tutorials for making the old school curtains that came in the airstream originally. We have the upper and bottom tracks, and we ordered the glides that attach to the curtains. I haven’t settled on a fabric yet…I think I need to get something thicker than I was originally planning. As long as I can figure out the pleats, we’ll be set.

My goal is to have them look something like this (Photos from Pinterest):

I have been trying t find cute vintage-esque vinyl tiles for the bathroom and could only find good ones with like $100 shipping, since I was only ordering a small quantity! So, I went out into our pool house today and grabbed some leftover blue mosaic tile we had from our hall bathroom remodel. I laid it out to see how it would look….very hard to get a good visual of it, but I am excited. It is lightweight, basically cost $0 and is ready to install as soon as Matt elevates the floor 3/4 inch. He thinks the floor needs support back there and I think the tile will lay easier on a nice new subfloor! I’ll be finishing up cosmetic stuff inside, while Matt handles all the big stuff.

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I guess it is a good thing that I suck at measuring things. In an effort to get the sofa bed to fit where it is supposed to fit, we decided to take out the side living room cabinet with the 8 track player (*tear*). We had noticed a small area of rot in an inaccessible area behind the cabinet. So, we picked up from 23/32″ plywood (really Lowes, no 5/8″ plywood?!….geez) to repair the damage. We were able to replace the damaged plywood in 2 of the areas and used bondo by the door. Matt sanded the bondo and got dust evvveeerrrryyywwwhhhheeerrrreeee! I was so sad because I had been cleaning this airstream for weeks now (assuming demo was done!). He redeemed himself by thoroughly cleaning the sofa and floors. I primed and painted the wall that was behind the cabinet. Next, we have to caulk the edges of the floor where the patches are and install the new flooring over it.

We’re making progress with other projects. We ordered new blackwater and graywater tanks today. They are being custom made and should be here in 4-6 weeks. I feel like making a paper chain counting down the days because that is a long time to wait!!

We got the 1974 AC working for about 1 minute. We’re pretty sure it’s gonna be trash because A) It is impossible to find someone locally to work on it, B) It uses R-11 refrigerant, which is basically for sale at the price of gold, and, C) We could spend $450 and get a brand new one a lot easier than trying to fix this one.

Christie and I priced out fabrics for curtains. I am not in love with any of the patterns available locally, so I am researching some good modern fabrics online, but we might just go with $.99/yard muslin and possibly use it as a liner, once we find some rad fabric for curtains.

I cleaned the inside of all the kitchen cabinets….all I can say is EW. Gross. Yucky.

I’m thinking we could be ready for camping in about 30-45 days, depending on when our waste water tanks come in. Or, we can find a KOA with bathroom facilities and take airstreamy out sooner. Can’t wait!

Here are some photos of what we’ve been up to over the last few days:

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This project sounds easier than it was. We bought a sofa bed ‘site-to-store’ from Walmart called the Atherton Home Manhattan Convertible Futon Sofa Bed and Lounger (Pearl color) for $269. It had great reviews and was the cheapest, nicest looking one we could find online. We picked up the sofa in a big box last night that barely fit in the back of Matt’s Expedition. We decided to wait for daylight to move the sofa into the airstream. We kept it wrapped and carefully wiggled it inside. Once inside we had to install the short little legs and figure out the ‘click-clack’ function. The sofa bed can be a sofa, double chaise lounge or a bed, with a couple clicks. We got it all put together and tried to squeeze it into the area it was supposed to go….it didn’t fit! Boo! I took measurements before buying the sofa to ensure it would fit, but what I didn’t account for was the slight curve at the front of the airstream, which strips us of 1-2″ of square space.  The sofa base is square and can’t be changed. So, in the meantime, we have it set up as a double chaise. Matt is going to do some measurements to see if it will fit snugly, if we cut the countertop to the side back a little bit. It sure does make the space look cleaner and newer. Every project gets us a step closer to a modernized airstream. Don’t mind the filthy floors in the photos….we just finished laying them last night. We still have some trim pieces to install before they’re finished.

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The biggest eye sore on the airstream has been the oversized, after-market swamp cooler. I wanted it taken off the second it hit our driveway, but removing it required the skills of a talented metal guy. That’s where our friend Hot Rod Ron comes in. Ron came over today to help Matt seal the roof up, after Matt took off the evap cooler. After the existing metal was exposed under the evap cooler, Ron used a cut-off wheel to cut the metal straight, both on the roof and inside the ceiling. They then went to go pick up 2 sheets of aluminum, a tube of silicone and a rivet gun to patch the roof. Matt cut the aluminum sheets down to size and Ron walked Matt through the patch job. We have to get some insulation before we patch up the inside, but that will happen in the next day or so. Thanks Ron for all the help today. We owe you big time!

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Yesterday our friend Christine and her son Espen came over. They came right before a big dust storm hit, so we had to close up the airstream while the storm rolled through. This morning we worked on installing new electrical outlets and covers to continue with the crisp white updates. We also took down the 70s wall speakers and spray-painted the yellowed plastic white. The speaker grills look like little chocolate bars…I wanna eat them. We have to connect a couple wires up to see if the 8 track player works. We’ll probably work on that tomorrow.

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From my previous posts, you’ve probably seen that plastic from the 1970s doesn’t age well. It turns yellow and stains really easily. After watching a rad tutorial online from the show Classic Rides, I learned how I could transform my tub, sink and counters with epoxy paint. We went to Lowes to find epoxy and came across one that didn’t say it was suitable for plastic, but we took a risk with it and bought it. The results are nothing short of amazing. The new finish was applied with a 6″ foam roller and a 2″ foam paint brush. 3 hours of applying two coats of epoxy and it’s ready for some pretty new fixtures.

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After everything was primed throughout, we painted with Olympic no voc paint in a natural white. It is amazing what a difference paint makes!

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The nastiest room in the airstream was the bathroom. I become slightly less offended by it, as I paint over the aged plastic surfaces. Check out the before photos of the bathrooms. I had to remove a bunch of broken inserts for the metal trim and also remove contact paper from the counters, which revealed a lot of staining. We are going to be epoxying the tub, sink and counters to breathe in new life to the bathroom. We had to remove the toilet, as it wasn’t an RV toilet. We are going to replace the plexiglass in the shower door and spray paint the icky brass silver. We are also going to switch out plumbing fixtures. We haven’t done a full test of the plumbing yet because we don’t have a black water tank. Apparently, if you live in an airstream full-time and have it parked, you remove essential systems for a traveling trailer…boo! We also have plans to do a mosaic or pebble rock floor in the bathroom. I bought some dark matchstick bamboo for the bath skirt, but I might try to find something better to line it.

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