Devils Tower

Devils Tower

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Batten down the hatches........

I had to come up with a way to cover the old hole left by the hot water tank removal/air conditioner install.  I had to source some .032" aluminum to build the cover out of.  I went to a local supplier. I would have liked to use 2024-T3, but all they had was 3003-H14.  It was kinda soft and didn't polish well.  It was readily available though.  I have been hanging on to some of the remaining trim from the original hot water heater, in hopes that I could use it.
I figured I could polish it up a bit before installation, so I threw it on the buffer.
I had a hard time finding a hinge that matched the original.  I was on the Airstream board and they suggested a hinge provided by a teardrop trailer kit manufacturer, Lil Bear Tag alongs.
This hinge was as close as it gets.  I figured I would camouflage the hinge in the original piece of trim.  Sort of take the focus off of it.
The only problem was that it would only open about 100 degrees.  This meant I had no way to latch it to the side of the trailer.  It's no big deal, I'll just slide the door completely off when the A/C is extended.
I had to make sure I made no mistakes, I only had a 24"x24" sheet.
I fabbed up a few 90 degree L brackets to help stiffen up the sheet metal door.  The sheet metal was so soft the rivets sort of dimpled.  I had to shore up the backside and bump the rivets to remove some of the "puckering."
Pucker Up buttercup...............
I used these vice grips to form a flange along the edges.  This helps to mimic the flange on the original door for the storage area.  These doors will be side by side, so I want it to look like it belongs.
This is a little odd, but it sort of looked like the original paint texture.  It worked out ok.  It sort of looks like trunk paint.
I added the lock.  It was designed for a cabinet, but it will work ok.
The finished door.  I am wondering if I should add a row of rivets to the original door to make it match better.  I still need to buff the original door.

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