It's now or never...

Discussion in 'Restorations' started by Ermintrude, Feb 25, 2019.

  1. A few weeks ago knowing that there's a garage with ramps, tools and a welder available for the next six months I decided that it was a good time to tackle the underside of the camper... *eek*

    Having never removed the side or middle pans, I wanted to be prepared and so I read all the scary old threads with equal amounts of dread and awe. Perhaps the most pertinent advice i read was from @zedders, something about not doing it until you're mentally and financially prepared....

    Mentally - Bring. It. On.
    Financially - *shrugs* so some house stuff has to take a back seat to the vw's, like that's never happened before! :D

    Next was just to wait until i could get the bus over there and let the stripdown begin.

    Unfortunately life had other things in store, and following some devastating news I found myself not even mentally prepared to go to the local shop, let alone face the Pandora's box beneath the belly pans.

    But time ticks on, i had a big decision to make - could i face starting this journey with the camper with so much else going on, or could it be a welcomed distraction? if i don't do the camper now, then when?

    Elvis had the answer. :cool: *sings badly* 'It's now or neveeeeeeer...'

    On Saturday, with some encouraging phone calls to get me there (thank you- you know who you are!) I got to the unit on top of the world (it's so windy up there!) and made a start on the bus.

    A wobbly start but a start nonetheless.
    Wanna see...?
  2. Yay! :thumbsup: ... Show us yer strip down :rolleyes:
    Robo and Ermintrude like this.
  3. Glad your ok ,was starting to wonder . Hope things are turning round . Don’t take on more than you can handle was always my motto ,and get help if you need it , so what you doing ?
    Tilly, Louey and Ermintrude like this.
  4. Show an` tell time :D

    Be prepared for mucho-macho sucking of teeth but it`ll be fine !

    Last edited: Feb 25, 2019
    scrooge95 and Ermintrude like this.
  5. Ramps are great!

    Ooh bellies. They looked better than I thought. *smug grin*

    Removing the centre pan resulted in some swearing and bashing my shoulder into the ramps. Those things come sharp!
    Finally gave in and got the air tools out. Yes!

    It wasn’t looking too bad, a greasy bottom of the floor, a corroded electrics sheath, but overall encouraging. *bigger smugger grin*

    Now to tackle those dastardly side pans. First with a scrape

    All was going ok until I got to the o/s edge of the welded on pan. The pan started to resemble rusty lace. Y’know, the side nearest to the sill. *smug grin diminished*

    After sticking an endoscope (no, not the same one!) into one of the ‘frill holes’ and not seeing much at all.... I grabbed the big pneumatic chisel thing and did this. [​IMG]

    Turns out that it’s quite therapeutic :)

  6. pipe down, i'm on it! :D
    Jack Tatty likes this.
  7. How was the sill looking? Bugger only knows, so much rust came out from that pan I could barely see. Yes, I did have goggles on but they filled up!

    As mine’s a crossdresser they’re the pans without holes, the special moisture trapping ones.

    Not sure that’s salvageable. Oops.


    So what did I find.....


    More rust and some holes.

    A bit more scraping, prodding and wire brushing before a sweep up and going home for my tea.




    I was ditched having left the bag of working clothes in the kitchen - I’m a little discombobulated at the moment- my arms and shoulders ached and I had rust in most orifices.... but I’d had a great afternoon and some time out of current circumstances.

    Like a pig in the proverbial, I then knew that starting this was the right decision. :)
  8. I’ll be doing all the strip down myself and even doing some welding (the bits that won’t be seen). Mick the welder is remarkably unphased by it and as we we’re leaving I mentioned taking off the n/s pan next time and how it probably wouldn’t be as bad.

    Mick picked up a scraper and attacked the outside sill. Oh.

  9. 21Window

    21Window Sponsor

    Don't worry...they always do that....Keep smiling, when are you hoping to be back on the road?

    scrooge95, Ermintrude and Lasty like this.
  10. Thanks to @Lasty and @davidoft for parts advice - i've started on the schofield's shopping list already.

    I'll most definitely be asking for more advice from all of you.

    This is the first time since leaving the factory that some of these bits have been revealed :eek: and i'm learning what all the bits do - or don't do... i have no heater cables! :confused: Though that's possibly the least of my worries :oops:
  11. It is indeed but on the bright side it`ll soon be summer ..

    Crack on !!

    Ermintrude likes this.
  12. April Techenders! It may be in red oxide patches.
    I'm the second owner but the first was a farmer, it was registered as such when i bought it. Having never had the pans off they have been at the back of my mind for most of the 15 years i've owned it. It's a relief to finally let the dog see the rabbit... and after all, it's only metal and fixable :)
    Last edited: Feb 25, 2019
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  13. :p I can't until tomorrow night, but will hopefully get the other pan off so i can start the proper clean up and prodding!
    I wasn't going to do this today but chatting to you made me realise that it's a good change of focus and more reason to keep cracking on! :thumbsup:
    Last edited: Feb 25, 2019
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  14. that doesn't look too bad to be fair, some of that surface rust will clean up with some elbow grease!
    mgbman and Ermintrude like this.
  15. that's exactly what i thought. After reading so many thread about it i really was prepared for the absolute worst...and still i did it! :D

    There's a few places i used a little too much elbow grease and it went into holes but nothing too shocking. yet.
    MorkC68 likes this.
  16. i'm guessing i should unwrap the heater tube, or shall i just leave it and resign myself to the fact that i'll never have it working and keep its snuggly blanket on?
  17. take your time with it, preparation is they key, as you'll know by now & all will be well!
    Lasty, Valveandy and Ermintrude like this.
  18. they get worse before they get better don t forget to paint everything in sight zinc primer or red lead
    mgbman, Ermintrude and Lasty like this.
  19. I've been doing my homework on prep and paint and when ready, i will be bolting the new pans on and possibly putting some inspection holes in before i do!
    MorkC68 likes this.
  20. Wonderful project for you and making progress already. We like to see the pics of the van on here but also I think it would be good for you to get your nice welder chap to take some of you working on the van so you could keep a personal file on the project.

    We admire your get stuck in approach and I wonder if you could persuade some of the folks on here who have experience of van restoration, to come along and advise.
    Ermintrude likes this.

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