The first weekend of May was much more productive. After going to the Chiropractor 4 times in a week, I was able to really dig in Friday and Saturday. I won’t even get into all the yoga, icing, and ibuprofen it took to get me to this point.
After taking down all the upper cabinets and removing most of the bed frame, came the paneling. I really thought this was going to be easy. I mean, Google said it was no problem. “Just remove the paneling,” Google said.
I started on the wall where the bed was.
What Google failed to mention was the panels were adhered to the styrofoam insulation.
Eventually, I found a page that recommended heat guns and I went to the store to buy my very own. Nothing special, the cheapest one they had.
That worked, but only so much. Finally, the Dremmel Saw Max came out to play. Cutting some vertical and horizontal strips just deep enough to get through the paneling, I was able to use a pry bar and mallet to chip away. The heat gun still came in handy for a few places.
In the above picture you can also see the water damage from the window. That tiny little crack in the wall paper only hinted at the mess underneath. The reason the wood is so dark is because it is wet.
Next came the insulation. This was the easy part. It had to be. They couldn’t have possibly made this part difficult.
All insulation all the time.
You can see the outlines of some metal strips directly to the left of the window as well as below the remaining wood paneling below the window. These strips were almost completely corroded. Only the horizontal piece to the left of the two vertical strips (you can see the outline toward the middle of the wall) was truly intact. The outlines are actually rust left behind.
You can also see the wood frame for the window has gone back to dust in the bottom left corner. I saw that one coming though.
What I didn’t see coming was this:
“What’s that?” you ask. That is more paneling the styrofoam was glued to. It is also water damage coming from the direction of the bathroom. I thought the bathroom was perfect. Remember the left part of the wall, below the tall cabinet? That big, dark, wet patch to the left was hiding behind that.
I also did not expect this:
This RV really knows how to keep things fresh and exciting. See, wut ha happened wuz, the paneling to which the styrofoam was glued, wait, the back layer of paneling to which the styrofoam was glued, was also glued to the aluminum siding of the RV. Oh this is fun. Now, because of the water damage and possibly age/glue, the paneling comes off in layers. Like a biscuit. The very last layer of the paneling is stuck to the ridges of the siding.
This is where the heat gun really shines. Using the heat gun and a pry bar I was able to get the two middle ridges almost completely clean.
Unfortunately, due to the new water damage, it looks like I will have to take the interior wall down and remove the paneling from the bathroom as well.
Fortunately, I have made a deal with a friend whose son needs some work. I will leave the RV at his house and go on the weekends to do what I can. During the week, the son will remove the walls and start to put up the new stuff. I have a special plan.
If I did this alone, it would take me forever. Plus, this will allow me to rest my back during the week.
I am extremely grateful for the very timely help.
Moving the RV will also allow me to take all the cabinets out and work on multiple rooms at once. I wouldn’t have done this before, but if two people are in the bedroom I can be in the living area working or painting some cabinets.
Now, at this point there may have been some tears. I was a little frustrated. Not just at how difficult the whole process has been, but I will now have to do the entire RV. Talk about daunting.
I had calmed down before I thought of having my friend’s son help, though. Mostly because, whatever. It has to get done. After learning about my new helpers everything was even more zen in these parts. Things may be going all wrong, but they are going pretty alright as well.