Rain, Rain, Go Away…

We’ve had a few rainy days on the homestead, which has been unfortunate for the Spartan. Over the past few weeks I’ve been working on removing the old, original foam gaskets from the windows in preparation of The Mr installing the new rubber gasketing we found at Vintage Campers. But a funny thing happens when you have a window without gaskets and it rains outside…it starts raining INSIDE, too. Boo. If we had foreseen the onslaught of rain coming, we would have ordered the length of gasket sooner (and we likely should have), but we didn’t. I placed the order for it early last week, along with a tube of Parbond (an aluminum caulk of sorts) and a handful of self-adhesive aluminum patches. Naturally, the gasket was the one thing on backorder, and once the rain started we had to wait til everything was dry to fix the problem.

Now that the skies have parted and the sun returned for a moment, The Mr got to quick work with the Parbond. The first order of business was to fill and seal a couple gaps in external seams from precious damage. Next, the windows. Specifically, the large living room that has been acting as a waterfall this past week. Here’s a quick pictorial tour through the process of stripping and replacing the gaskets. Highly entertaining stuff. 😉

That crusty black strip is the original foam gasket that sealed the windows shut in 1956. (I had already scraped it off the bottom edge.) It's time for a rubber upgrade!
That crusty black strip is the original foam gasket that sealed the windows shut in 1956. (I had already scraped it off the bottom edge.) It’s time for a rubber upgrade!
A paint scraper and a couple sanding blocks later...Voila!!
A paint scraper and a couple sanding blocks later…Voila!!
Just a peek into the amount of DIRT that has accumulated in the grooves of the window frames. YUCK!!
Just a peek into the amount of DIRT that has accumulated in the grooves of the window frames. YUCK!!

 

 

 

 

Apparently I don’t have a picture of a window sill with the Parbond sealant in the gap of the corner seams, nor with the actual new gasket installed. Lame. I mean, isn’t the whole point of this blog to show you the results of the progress we’re making?? Who’s in charge of this thing anyway?! Oh. Right.

So…back to the whole ‘raining indoors’ thing. That sucked. A lot. Here’s exactly how much it sucked:

Notice the rain water wicking into all the beautiful BRAND NEW subfloor.
Notice the rain water wicking into all the beautiful BRAND NEW subfloor.

With the rain not stopping and the towel doing a sub-par job of soaking up the downpour, The Mr came up with an alternate solution. He was already aware that the Spartan was sitting on an ever-so-slight downward slope toward the living room (where the leak was occurring), so all the rain was literally pouring down this spot through an outlet hole in the small gutter rail above this window. Here is what he did about it:

Gutter
Homemade “downspouts” fashioned out of leftover chain-link fence ties. Whatever works, man.

Those two little metal prongs sticking out of the rail up top actually directed the majority of the water away from the trailer, thus keeping it from seeping into the window and deeper into the new subfloor. Now that’s ingenuity, folks! And the even better news is that after the rain stopped, the FedEx man came, the seams were Parbond-ed and the new gaskets were in place…we got even MORE RAIN. Okay, so that’s not the better news. The better news is that the second rain did not bring any leaks! Woohoo, we have success!! And we also have 10 out of 17 windows updated with new gaskets. Which means we have 7 more to go. (I’m really good at math.) Next time I’m working on that, I’ll snap you a couple pictures of the wonder-that-is-Parbond and the magical gaskets. Try to contain your excitement.

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