• catherine

007 - HENRY FORD reno

Updated: Oct 4, 2018

One of the challenges we decided to take on was to repaint the entire interior of Henry Ford. The main reasons being, that we wanted our home to be lighter on the interior, (Henry was painted gray when we bought him and changing to white makes a huge difference when living small) as well as covering spots that weren't painted when we removed some of the things on demo day.

We went ahead and entered Home Depot without much knowledge on painting the interior of an RV and were soon overwhelmed with our options. We asked the staff what they would recommend, but unfortunately most of them had as little experience as us with the surfaces we were dealing with. After quite some time in the paint aisle, quick research on our phones, and a few different opinions from the employees, we decided to go with a separate primer (we really needed the paint to stick to all our surfaces, whether it had been painted previously, still had the original wallpaper whatever that might be, or the fake wood veneer of the cabinets). On top of that we went with the cheapest flat white interior paint we could find [Mattias reasoning always being: it doesn't have to look like a castle in the end]. We bought the fitting rollers, two of the cheapest brushes, plastic covers, a roll of Frog Tape, a roll of brown covering paper and three paint trays.

We had the perfect amount of almost everything, except way too much paint and primer, and we ran short on tape but luckily my dad had some spare in his workshop.

The taping and covering was probably the most tedious job of painting, it also took us an entire afternoon. The primer went pretty quick due to the fact that we did not have to be as precise. And as far as painting goes, we first only wanted to do one coat, but after taking a second look, we agreed to do the sleeping and living area with a second coat of the flat paint, and the kitchen and bathroom with a satin white so we could wash any stains off easily. Removing the tape was probably the funnest part, because that's when you actually get to see the results. Most edges turned out nicely, however we realized that the edges with the Frog Tape turned out much neater than the ones with the other tape.

The flooring was another hard decision. We knew we wanted vinyl but again, there are so many different options. We decided on a vinyl plank floor that could just sit directly on our subfloor and would easily stick together on the edges once put together. The laying down was easy, but measuring everything precisely in an old RV that has no straight edges, was the harder part. We started by the dining area because that was the most reasonable beginning and after drawing the planks in in the short way it gave us less cuts and less thin pieces. After a day of hard work, we were able to master the entire floor.

The baseboards gave us a little more trouble. We tried to avoid them as long as possible but in the end Mattia decided to conquer the task. Together with my dad, he cut perfect angles for the corners. After having cut every single piece to the right size, we first tried to only glue them down and soon realized that with the right angle, small nails were what really held them down and in place. I had to dim my perfectionism a little for this task, but in the end I was also happy with the result.

Next, we took on the task of repainting the stripes on the outside. Henry Ford came with these blue/lilac stripes that we weren't necessarily fond of. So we decided to paint our logo stripes over the width of the existing stripes. Again, finding the right paint for this was a mission in itself. Nobody had a clue what was best, and after a bit of research and a few different opinions, we decided to go with a Rustoleum automotive grey primer that unfortunately only came in spray cans, and for the stripes we went with a satin exterior paint that they mixed for us to match our colors. Again, the taping (and sanding down) was the most tedious job, and since we had spray cans for the primer we really had to cover almost the entire body with paper and platic covers. Painting the exterior took us a couple of days, mainly because the vivid orange needed about four coats to really cover everything.

In between all this and literally waiting for the paint to dry, we spent a few days just doing small bits and pieces here and there: like mounting the curtain rods, sewing new curtains for the "bedroom", making a small bin for our cooking utensils out of an old alaska lisence plate [all the credit goes to Mattia for this], mounting hooks, mounting the new shades in the living area and kitchen, redoing the silicone joints in the kitchen and bathroom, cutting and mounting the new shower curtain, mounting the new water conserving shower head, cleaning out all cabinets, the windows, and everything else that could be cleaned, and of course build out the nook where the microwave used to be. Thanks to my dad and his craftyness, we finished the sides, ceiling, and put in a new floor in the nook so we could fit my small espresso machine and some old cigar boxes that neatly fit into eachother and can perfectly hold our oil, vinegar, and spices.

It took us a few trips to Home Depot, Lowes, and Target, some sweat, a few minor disagreements, and a lot of learning on the way to finally finish and add the last few decorative touches a month later. Not to mention the couple of days we took off to actually relax and explore in between. The day trip with my parents to the babcock ranch, a captiva cruise to cayo costa with my sister, a mother daughter day on the island, and of course the spontaneous trips to the beach, came exactly at the right time.

Our conclusion: we are super happy with the results, the time it took us to get here, and the money we invested. After a successfull oil change, filling up the water tank, and moving in all our stuff, Henry Ford is ready to hit the road.

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