Building the Kitchen (Part 4)

Building the Kitchen (Part 4)

June 2, 2015 Categories Camper Van

This is part four; here is part one, two, and three (I know, it’s getting long).

Yesterday I left the doors off the cabinets so they could dry overnight and first thing this morning I put the hardware back on them and installed them back onto the cabinets. I’m really digging how good they look. I especially love the brushed silver against the stained wood.

Next up was finally routing my hot water pressure relief drain pipe down and out through the van floor. I put a small piece of window screen over the end to keep bugs out and then I put some silicone around the hole where the pipe comes out of the van to seal it up. I’m pretty sure my water system will never reach 100 psi, so this pipe will likely never have water running through it; it’s there “just in case.”

Before I installed my stove permanently, I wanted to move the outlet above it up a couple inches so it wasn’t directly on top of the counter top once everything is done and in place. If I left it the way it was, it would have annoyed me every time I looked at it. So, I cut the hole in the wall a little taller and then cut a small block of wood to fill the space at the bottom. I cut the block so it has an extremely tight fit (seriously, I had to hammer it in) and I also glued it in place. Once it was in, I stained it to match the rest of the wall and put the cover back on. If you actually look, you can tell it’s been “patched”, but it’s a lot less noticeable than the outlet sitting directly on the counter with tons of wall space above it, which is how it would have been if I didn’t raise it. Now it should be almost centered in the available space and my OCD can take a break.

Now I was finally able to install my stove. I bought an Atwood 2-Burner Stainless Steel Drop-In, which is designed for RVs and campers. I had to run 1/4″ black pipe from the gas line to the regulator on the stove. This time I used the yellow PTFE tape to seal up the joints instead of the paste I used on everything else; it’s just too messy to apply. After testing it for leaks, it was time to light it up and see if it worked. Sure enough, it lit right up and has nice, blue flames. The only downside of this stove is that it doesn’t have a pilot light, you have to manually ignite it. For me, it’s not that big of a deal because I’m used to having to light my backpacking/camping stove, and that’s really all I consider this to be – a built-in camping stove.

With the stove in, I also secured my sink so I could start building the face for the kitchen cabinet. Because of how the cabinet extends partially over the raised floor, I cut the pieces so it would create a “notch” in the bottom, left corner to fit over the floor. My bottom drawer will be an odd, Tetris-looking piece to take advantage of as much storage space as possible. Before deciding how tall each drawer would be, I measured some cereal and Hamburger Helper boxes to get a rough idea of package sizing. This should allow most groceries to fit in the drawers, as the bottom two drawers are my pantry. In the picture below, I’m just holding the cabinet face up against the cabinet to get and idea of how it will look.

Then I made my drawer faces. I didn’t make the actual drawers today, but it’s on the list for tomorrow.

And lastly, I stained all the drawer faces and the pieces for the cabinet face. I didn’t glue the cabinet face together yet because I don’t have clamps and didn’t want it to be slightly out of shape and then have the glue dry with it like that. I’m gonna glue it together tomorrow when I’m ready to attach it.

Although I probably still have a couple weeks of work left to do, I feel like I’m finally getting close to the finish line on this van project. I’m hoping by Friday that I have my other seating/storage area built and then I just have a bunch of little things I need to finish.

Continue on to part five.

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