…a little body prep work and electrical upgrades…

Today the flashers were removed, the flasher hoods were sanded, primed and painted copper.  We are installing LED flashers in the front and back warning flashers, removing the old incandescent lights and running the LEDs off the solar system.  Of course the new flashers will have entertaining patterns and such for our personal enjoyment and hopefully the metallic theme of silvers and coppers and metallic purples and blues is pleasing to the eye of those who behold Leauxie X42.  IMG_E6929IMG_E6928

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Build-a-bed.

I got the bed lifts in the other day. Our bedroom, a very cozy space in the back of our bus right next to the garage, will be our little sanctuary. We are excited about the storage opportunity under the bed as it is. There is a large trunk sized area towards the foot of the bed that will be able to store large items, extra bed cloths, shoes & boots and whatever else we can cram in there. I have a set of doors that open into the kitchen hallway into the same storage area that you can open to access the compartment without lifting the bed as well.

The rest of the two thirds of the area under the bed holds out 42 gallon water supply tank. The pumps, one for the cold/drinking water and one for the solar heated water will both be mounted next to the tank and towards the open rear for easy access to the filters.

The 2x 200 amp hour (total of 400 amp hours) batteries, charge controller, 12/24v step-ups converter and 5,000/10,000 inverter are all installed conveniently out of the way in this area as well.

The bed lifts are from Woodcraft.com and feature 210lbs. of lifting support. They were very easy to install and the deck mounted right on top with no problems.

Now it’s going to be time to build up our individual storage/desk areas on each side of the bed and begin routing water supply and solar circuits throughout the bus, it’s going to start whizzing to life and be a force of its own!

Week of Adulting…

Well, it was a busy week taking care of business responsibilities and doing the adult stuff that makes life go, BUT – it’s Saturday, with a heat index of 113° and what better day to get back inside the bus and start bolting and glueing and screwing things together!

After taking care of our AirBnB guests for the week, finding piles of things to liquidate on Craigslist/eBay, mowing, and all that stuff I did get to go out for a couple hours here and there to play a little.

I “hooked up to test” (versus “installed” as it’s just hanging from the shelf right now), one of the LED light drivers that will control, at least – the addressable LED in the windshield.  The controller is a little unit I picked up off Amazon called the Colorful X2.  It’s a small unit with a touch remote that is sound reactive if you run an audio source through it’s 3.5mm jack.  The two:

1M 144 LEDs (WS2812B)

Individually Addressable LED Strips

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…are attached directly above the windshield and are fun for parties, gathering or for simple personal enjoyment at 3am.  🙂

For today’s short update (because… I gotta get out there in that heat and get to werk…) I will include a short video of what it looked like last night for the first time trial, just to see what it looked like.

Today, I’m hoping to get the bed lifts attached so basically, ALL of the interior framing is in place and I can start routing the wiring and plumbing from the solar collector, solar panels to battery bank and supply & drain lines for the wet bath and kitchen sink.  This beast is going to start coming alive next week, as long as I don’t cook to death inside.

Here’s what it looked like:

It was a SOLAR day!

Well, today the solar panels went on top of the bus. They are mounted on hinges attached to 2″ angle iron bolted through the aluminum ribs of the bus frame. The hinges are to be used to tip one side or the other towards the sun – wherever that might be. There are (4) 250w panels for a total of 1kW. Brackets for solar panel hinges.

It wasn’t terribly hard to line everything up and mount it on the angle iron. I laid it all out on the ground and fit it – then carried the pieces up and bolted it all down through the rubs that make up the frame of the bus body. The hinges will allow us to raise either side towards the sun.

Equipment hookup coming soon, maybe some tomorrow if I can get the bulk of the bed frame built. The 400 amp hour bank is balanced on both sides of the 42 gallon water tank which is situated underneath the bed which will raise up on struts for maintenance and access of the science system.

Onwards!

Light day on kitchen work…

Today was mostly supply pick up day. We did get a few little parts installed. I’m going ahead and dry mounting all the electronics and fixtures and will run 110v, 24v, 12v, 5v and water supply/drain lines to the places they need to go then finish the walls/cabinets.

We have two hand pumps in the 4 hole sink, one for dish soap, one for hand sanitizer. The faucet is in one and I found a neat little trick item from Glacier Bay that has a little button on a wire that pops the strainer up & down without having to reach into the sink water. …hey, I needed something to use the fourth hole for.

I put up a couple pieces of framing to start building the upper cabinets on and started fitting some of the drawer slides for our base storage cabinet. I picked up some of the fittings to begin building the solar collector water heater but really, I need to build the deck of the mezzanine on top the bus before I can really install any of that or the 4-250w solar panels. Soon, soon…

I was able to find a good deal on the FB marketplace on a Boss BV9759BD stereo that will integrate our camera systems on the bus and serve as our sound system for party time in the main theater lobby in front of the kitchen.

…gotta have the musics! I know the sound reactive addressable LEDs will love it when they get to pulse.

That’s about all for today. Tomorrow I have to fix a messed up gutter on the back of the building but, I’m sure we will get to screw or glue something to the bus.

Onwards!

Kitchen counter work…

We finished the basic framing on the kitchen cabinets today and started blocking in the multi-leveled counter/prep tops. That’s the fun part, the organic building and using left over materials, we can make multi level/multi use areas. We have an elevated prep surface over the fridge, the sink cut out is being made into a stove cover (we will make it pretty with 2-part epoxy and mica). There is a small counter surface next to the sink with room for small plants in front of the windows and an enlarged area around the sink just because we wanted to make it so.

…got the black steel drum in today (10 gallon – not 5 gallon like I stated in a previous post…) as well, it is the holding tank for our solar collector/24v electric hot water system.

Bulkheads will be going in soon and the water system will be started this week.

Also, we installed the CB with handsfree Bluetooth next to the scanner, rounding out the communications department, including a directional King HDTV air antenna at the front of the bus for the main movie lobby! 😉

Stay tuned for details!