So for all the Vintage car and RV enthusiasts on here, I'm thinking about converting the bottom half of my RV to a Woody. Any thoughts?

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Comment by Remodeling Mad Scientist on April 3, 2015 at 11:06pm

@ MT, Imron is good stuff. Good info on the construct, I'll keep it in the bag of tricks.

@ Todd, funny you mention cedar, I use rough cut cedar in most of my projects. That's actually what I used in most of the camper's interior. Good to hear I'm not the only one crazy enough to put rough cut cedar on the side of a vehicle! lol

Comment by Todd on April 3, 2015 at 12:55pm

Todd here. I know this is a totally different look then you are going for but I helped a friend turn his school bus into a "WOODY BUS" using rough sawn cedar like you would use for a fence. This was is in Maine so it might make a little more sense. The wood never rotted but in time faded into a light gray color. It looked like an old east coast cottage rolling down the street. It was light weight but like I said it was in Maine.

Comment by Matthew Tritt on April 2, 2015 at 11:18am

Wise move. ;-) The most important thing to keep in mind with most woods purposed to live in the outdoor environment is what's used in the way of glue. The second is the way that laminates like plywood are treated. There are still good sources of marine grade teak and mahoganies, which would be the best, but you can also use most grades as long as they're exterior grade and pre-treated with thinned out polyurethane. The big problem with traditional woody construction is the use of finger joints. That's where most rot begins and repairing problems is really difficult, if not impossible, without complete disassembly and refabrication. In the old days, wood bodied automobiles were kept under cover and/or constantly maintained. Same thing (only more so) with traditional boats, but it's a real struggle so I'd give it a LOT of consideration! Any good linnear polyurethane should work great, but as you know it's all about the prep. Imron is what most planes are painted with, which is a high quality polyurethane that's been around a long time.

Comment by Remodeling Mad Scientist on April 1, 2015 at 10:22pm

I'm curious, I responded to your post via my iphone, but it is nowhere to be found MT. Anyway, sorry for the delay and thank you for the feedback! I'm a little curious what finish you'd recommend in the "aircraft genre." I was a custom coatings contractor in a previous life, and I'm familiar with most urethanes and varnishes. On most exterior wood projects I'd usually go with either a waterborne urethane or an automotive clear coat depending on the medium and the job's $$ available. Love the idea still, but in the end I've decided to steer toward selling the camper until I can buy a bigger tow vehicle, so I'm obviously not going to go as in depth with my usual remodeling shenanigans. I did just repaint the exterior, check it out when you get a min!

Thanks again for the info!  RMS 

Comment by Matthew Tritt on March 26, 2015 at 11:50am

OK, I'll bite! What make and year is the RV? Do you enjoy varnish work? Having been a "yachtie" in a previous life I would tend to steer you away from the shoals of continuous maintenance work and more toward something in the aircract genre, if you see what I mean. But if you just can't stop yourself, I'd go with Ash structual members and Honduras or African Mahogany panels. If you can still get it. Be sure and only use stainless fasteners and like material plugs! (I have a fair amount of old growth Teak, Iron Wood, Honduras Mahogany, Rosewood and etc left over from boat building days that I use for trim work in my GTC, but it's mostly inside)



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