Salvaged Dinettes

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The past few days Mr. C and I have been sick, tired, and sore…very sore. Because of my stinkin’ lower back pain and a sciatic nerve tensing up Mr. C’s entire right side, my plans to finish taping out the layout of the bus and adjust the components we put in there had to be ignored. But, I did want to share a little bit of what we accomplished before we became temporarily “incapacitated”….

While we were excited to have a couple of salvaged dinettes (these were part of the components that we purchased from Richard) to put in our conversion, we weren’t that fond of the blue carpet and vinyl…


…or the fact that they used nails to put them together. There was a bit of measuring, cutting, and screwing where the nails had been used and where we had to reinforce. It was fun to work with Mr. C. I love it when he smiles while we are working together…makes me feel like he actually enjoys this whole project as much as I do.


We had Ethan and Jamin pull off all of the vinyl/carpet/staples. I overheard Luken ask them how much money they were making from helping us. They told him that they weren’t doing this for money. They explained to him that they want to get Liahona finished so they can move into her and travel all over. That made me smile. 🙂


Behind the back of this dinette bench (up to the edge of the stairs and where the window begins), I will be building a cupboard that will hold misc. items (towing cable, triangles, flares, a bottle of water, etc.).


I will also be creating a little gate that will slide out across the back of these benches, to keep the little ones out of the driver’s area.


We were able to get the kitchen cabinets, bathroom vanity, and toilet in…just to get somewhat of an idea of how it will all fit together. So far, Floor Plan #4 looks like it will work. Yes! Can you see the wooden plank across the seat of the bench there on the right? We were hoping to use the Brazilian cherry wood flooring, that Matthew had sold us for dirt cheap, in the kitchen area. It turned out to be just a little bit too thick (3/4 inch) for Mr. C to move throughout the bus comfortably. We decided to stick with the oak flooring (3/8 inch instead) we got for an excellent price (well over 100 sf for $100…we only had around 30 sf of the other wood). I never would have believed that 3/8 inch could make that big of a difference…I am always learning.


We have 5 different tables that we salvaged, mostly for the hardware. After trying them all out, to see which one would work best for making these dinettes down into beds (and still having the room we were planning on having for the rest of the conversion), we decided upon this one. It is a little narrower than the others and because of that, it works perfectly…we tried it out. We will use the table top we have as a template and make two tables, then use the brackets and legs that we have gathered to finish up the tables (once the flooring is down). We will then sell off the tables we don’t end up cannibalizing.


The dinette that we got from Ernie for $30 didn’t need much adjusting…phew! I still need to finish cutting holes along the side for the ledge to fit inside. Those cuts will add about 2 inches of space in between the benches nearest the back. I will cut down the curved edge that runs along the inside, just to make it easier to get in and out and to give it all a more unified look. I also removed all of the cute little “bubble” screw covers and will most likely fill the holes in with wood putty before I paint them. That, or put a thin piece of wood along the top, either way it will look better. The stackable RV washer/dryer will go right behind the dinette on the left in this picture and this area won’t be as open, because the walls of the bathroom will come out about 3 feet from that wall on the left….have to sacrifice a little to get a lot (and with 8 people, a bathroom will be very appreciated). If we reinstall the floor heaters, the larger one will come out of the back of the dinette on the left, as well. We are definitely planning on putting one of the furnaces under that dinette or the other.

The kitchen cabinet fit perfectly. We only need to raise the base about 1/4 inch to have the back rest level on the ledge. After much debate, we have decided to give up that extra foot of counter top space to the left in order to fit a regular sized sink in there (33″x 22″x 9″). The larger sink will be better for cleaning dishes for 8 people and bathing Simon in. I will either buy or make a cutting board that will fit over the top of the sink. After getting the cabinets in, I am thinking that replacing the formica isn’t necessary, as long as the stove/oven fits well. I like the color. I thought it was too gray, but it seems like more of a very pale blue. And it will be one less thing to worry about.

One funny thing…Mr. C and I pulled all of the drawers, cupboards, etc., that we had gotten from Richard out of the garage to see where they would all fit. After going through everything, we realized that we had a few drawers that didn’t fit the cupboards we have and we are missing a couple of drawers for the kitchen cabinet. Good thing we can make new drawers, huh? Serves us right!
I am thinking about keeping the brass/ivory pulls that are on the cupboards/cabinets…but only if I can patina them (the shiny brass look was never very appealing to me).

I am hoping that I can get back out there this week and actually finish up the next step, taping out the layout and finishing up the adjustments. We are ready to start finding friends to help us finish up all of the areas that Mr. C and I are far from proficient in (i.e. electrical, plumbing, welding, etc.). I would like to finish up all of those areas before the snow sets in…wish us luck! 🙂
Pura Vida!
Mrs. C (that would be for Conversion Happy)
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