Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Why airstream restorations are so slow

This is my house Lilly's Rest. The front part you are seeing was moved onto the stone portion in the rear around 1870. Over the past 10 years I have have been doing one major restoration or remodeling project after another. This year we are residing the house. This is what is keeping me from making serious progress on Anna.
I have been removing the clap boards which are just nailed to the studs. Insulating, installing sheathing, and vapor barrier. So far I have about 70 % of that done. Next step will be trim and siding. I have been only able to put in small chunks of time polishing, but here is where I stand...
You are looking at 100 hours minimum here. As you can see, I still have a ways to go on this "first cut"
The bottom of a pound. Good thing the folks at Vintage Trailer Supply treat me so good, a new pound arrived just today along with some other vintage goodies.
This area has taken a long time due to the heavy corrosion caused by someone using steel wool or a very heavy grit sandpaper. All the scratches have created thick oxidation that  feels like sand glued to the surface. The stuff is extremely stubborn and requires a lot of effort to get it off. I have been using 320, 400, 600, 1000 wet dry sandpaper followed by F7. All the detail of the door with in the door, and the door itself had also contributed to it taking so long.

Even with wet sanding and multiple passes of F7 I am left with a surface like a tangerine. I feel this is about as good as it will get. Beauty marks, age defining lines....


the byamcaravanner said...

New siding??? I thought you were just tuning your house into a billboard for Lowes. Might make a good way to fund Anna's restoration. BTW, do you name everthing you own? Say hi to "Buffy" for me next time you are polishing. ;-)

Frank Yensan said...

Well Steve, In the olden times all houses were given names, such as the Biltmore or your beloved Falling Waters. Originally this house was part of a tobacco plantation call "The Timbers" it was 6633 acres at one time and had many African slaves and indentured servants working the land. Now it is just 1/2 acre with our little house sitting on the middle. The previous owner as Lilly Lillie, and she raised five children from 1937 until she died in 2000. The original owners name was Cornerius Rest. Those two previous owners are why we call our house Lilly's Rest. Stewardship requires respect for the past.
I will be sure to say hello to buffy for you this afternoon

Anonymous said...

Will you be buck riveting the siding onto Lilly's Rest?

How many panels?

I'm glad you've finally found inner peace in the polishing process.

I only achieve that glorious state while sipping a margarita after paying the neighborhood teenager $50 for washing and waxing my peeling, painted Argosy. ~insert heavy sigh for effect~


Frank Yensan said...

no bucking of rivets involved on installing the siding, however I will be using a hammer and nails to install it. No air powered nail gun will be harmed on this project...
Peace? Where in the world is there peace? Tolerance is what I am practicing. The new Makita polisher has also helped make it more tolerable.

Anonymous said...

I know it must be tough taking time away from Anna, but the good news is that you have a lovely house.

I, too, would like you to say "hi" to Buffy for me. And for what it's worth, Anna is really looking good. 100 hours? Child's play, right??


Thanks for the update to the blog!


Frank Yensan said...

Marcus, You just get ready.... you will be standing out there in the blazing hot Republic sun realizing how much you hate polishing. Cursing it, cursing previous owners that did not realize what they were doing... just you wait. I HIGHLY encourage you to invest in the best quality equipment and supplies. It WILL make a huge difference.
And for what it's worth, her name is Bonnie Blu and she is the newest mistress that I am messing around with, Anna does not mind at all. They might have something secret going on that I do not realize.

Anonymous said...

found yr cool site
My stream's called Airstream of consciousness (being a cyclotherapist, it was a nobrainer)... AND I am extremely unhandy.. must pay someone to gut and streamline the interior which is in good shape but I need no cupboards,etc. Can you suggest a place to sell orig overhead compartments, etc?
Sorry if this is le wrong place to ask...