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Caris the Gypsy – The Bus – Spray Foam Application

and so the fun begins… >:)

i needed about 550 square feet of foam, so a bit of research turned up versifoam systems… rhh foam systems

a bit of time on the phone with debbie buss (who was an absolute doll to me on the phone) i ran up to pactechproducts in lakewood (the local distributor) and picked up a foam kit…

rh foam systems
95% closed cell
20psi compression
531 sq ft kit @ 1″
r 7.7 per inch

cost about 1/3rd of the estimates we were getting to have it done by a pro…

this stuff is awesome. insulates like nobody’s business, eliminates condensation problems, and works as an epic sound deadener.
… it also adds structural stability, as it stiffens up panels quite a bit.. (knocking on a panel gets you a dull thud instead of sounding like a bell…)

so, not wanting to sacrifice any of my protective gear (this stuff will never, ever, come out of anything) i donned my makeshift safety gear…

brought to you courtesy of wal-mart (grocery bag on my head) 3m (organic vapor respirator) and glad (trash bag vest) for the ultimate in diy fashion…

everyone needs a little rockstar in their life 🙂

so the bus had a bit of foam in it already for corrosion control, but 1/2″ wasn’t going to cut it…

in many places it wasn’t applied at all, and in others it was done wrong so it was peeling, separating, and otherwise screwed up…
so, after i pulled the compromised foam out, and derusted a few trouble spots, i started in on it for real.

the first step was to spray all the gaps and crevices…

this stuff expands *a lot* so the trick is to spray enough in so that it fills the void to the top when it expands, but not so much that it oozes all over… what you see here is almost perfect, the piece falling from the ceiling is where the 4 gaps above this rail come together.

the corners of the window frames were a pain in the butt, but it was a huge thermal hole, so i did those next… you can see here, i’ve also done the top c channel above the square tube, and partially blended it into the ceiling…

you can see here a section they didn’t do at all in the right of the pic…

you can see here i’m doing the ceiling, having finished the back wall. anything not masked in this photo is going to get foamed over.
(too many windows is a nightmare for efficient heating and cooling)

the windows that we are foaming over were sprayed black from the inside first, (the mad skills of fayd at work…) … the rest will be tinted, so from the outside it will look like a handicapped bus with dark tinted windows, which is very common where this bus will live most of the time.

… part of the plan is to be able to urban camp anywhere, without being noticed.

working on the ceiling…

passenger side rear corner… you can see i’m already starting to get it all over me. the gun is actually glued to the glove by the foam at this point… eagle eyed readers will notice the drop cloth has vanished… the foam was gluing it to my shoes, so it got pulled out in the first 5 minutes.

drivers side, directly behind the drivers seat. you can see here the first window covering has been done, and the unmasked part of the second window has been done (but the wall under it has not been finished)

from the rear looking forward, almost finished here. there is a large amount of foam around the door frames, and in the front, as much of it was not done originally. anywhere there was a hole i could stick the gun in i sprayed foam into…

touching up the ceiling… took 2 days to get the foam bits off my arms 🙁

drivers side wall, finished for now. the foam is about 130 degrees as it’s curing…

keep in mind we’re under a lumber tarp so we’re pretty insulated, but it’s 38 degrees outside…

the foam is *highly* flammable when applying, so we couldn’t use heat after we started, which is why this is being done quickly. the foam is so sticky that you pretty much have to do it in one session.

it’s actually worse than it looks here, but it’s going to be dry and finished expanding in about an hour…

and then we can start pulling the masking off…

you can see that we left the tops of the windows that open unfoamed, to allow light and ventilation…

cleanup sucks :/

but you can see in the above photo how awesome the office in this rig is going to be 🙂

the foam comes as a 2 part system, the tanks are visible in this shot.

this is a closeup of one of the windows that opens, with the foam roughly trimmed out, in the early stages of shaping…

the frame on the lower left of this image is actually going to be a pull out bed for a guest, and a couch the rest of the time. the main system batteries will be under this on one side, and under a jump seat on the other side, to keep all the weight over the drive axles and keep it balanced.
to be continued…

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