Saturday, September 26, 2015

The roof on our vardo

For the past couple of weeks, we've been working off and on, getting the roof on our little vardo.  First, we had filled the spaces between the rafters with rigid styrofoam, glueing it all down.

this is before we added the foam insulation

This is the insulation - it has foil on one side.  The first layer we put in foil side down, the second layer, foil side up.  This should keep it cool in summer, warm in winter.

Then we bent plywood over the roof on each side, attaching to the rafters with glue and nails.

After we got the sheets attached, we cut 2" wide strips of plywood and covered the seams, spreading glue and nailing to cover the seams.

Then came the part where we waterproofed it.  We were using a technique called "poor man's fiberglass" - basically, you glue canvas down tightly to the wood, using Titebond II glue, which creates a water resistant seal.  Then you spread glue over the canvas, then paint over it with several layers of exterior grade paint, making sure the canvas soaks up all the paint and fills the fibers in.  I could tell as I was coating this that each layer will filling the spaces, and evening out the texture.

This is what it looked like after the canvas was glued down.

This is after one coat of house paint.

 More layers of house paint -- a total of 5 layers.
 The last layer was a light cream color, which was the background for my design of diamonds.

So, originally this pattern was going to be an all-over pattern of tan diamonds on a cream background.  But I had some nice dark brown paint so I thought I'd use that - and then it seemed kind of stark.  And I liked the way the straps stuck up, so I wanted to accent those.  So then I decided to add some stencils over the whole thing.  So it ended up with many more layers, but now I'm hapy with it.  

I finished it all up with a coat of clear poly to help protect it, although it's had heavy dew on it each night, and in the morning when I come out, there is water dripping off the roof onto the ground, and everything is totally watertight. 

So this took a lot longer than I expected, but that's how I work, so I'm used to it.  Here's a shot of some of my stencils:

Some of them I bought, and some of them I cut.  Can you tell I like a lot of pattern? 

So now I can work on the windows to the skylight, and get the bands around the roof all painted. I got one coat of paint on them this afternoon, but they need two more.  I feel like I've been painting and painting and painting -- because I have!  But we will have this little vardo all weather tight pretty soon!

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