Thursday, December 3, 2015

Truck caps that don’t look too ugly

I wrote here that I might have to build a truck cap out of 1/2” plywood in order for us to have a cap in time to take it back to the boat.  Then almost immediately I found a very old fibreglass cap about an hour away from here.  So last Sunday I drove to Churchbridge to pick it up, brought it home and promptly cut into it with my Sawzall. 

IMG_9225 IMG_9226 IMG_9228 I was too busy sawing and gluing to be buggering around taking pictures but you can pretty easily see what I did from these early stage pictures.  The cap is roughly the right width at the back but was about 3 inches too narrow at the front.  Which worked but it looked REALLY goofy.  I may have succeeded in trading “goofy” for “ugly” but its too soon to tell.

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The little 2x4 bumps on top are the mounting points where I will attach a set of cross bars that we originally bought to put on the Exploder.  They didn’t fit and we never ended up using them but they’ll work just fine for this purpose.  When we come back we want to bring the two Hobie kayaks with us.  They’ll ride on top of the cap on the roof racks. 

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Right now it looks pretty ugly (and it may very well end up looking ugly when we finally use it) but a coat of paint hides a host of sins.  I’ve got some gray metallic paint left over from the bus painting project and the weather forecast is unseasonably warm for tomorrow.  So my plan is to sand the hell out of it in the morning and blow some gray paint in its general direction tomorrow afternoon.  Followed by some clearcoat.  It will be whatever it will be but I think it may end up not looking too fugly and being really useful.

IMG_9249I finally got around to mounting the pushbutton switch for the lift and hooking up the safety switch.


You can’t actually see the safety switch in this picture – its on the back of the column and is activated by the horizontal bar that is visible under the top frame member.  That octagon box gave me a dose of peril when I was mounting it.  Not too much peril mind you but a bit of peril nonetheless.  My shop floor is smooth trowelled – the contractor and I had a big discussion when we were pouring the floor and he warned me that it would be slippery in the winter.  I wanted it shiny because they’re easier to keep clean but when I stood my extension ladder against the lift upright I didn’t consider the implications of an aluminum ladder on a slippery shop floor.  A few minutes later when I was dangling by one arm from the top cross member looking down at my runaway ladder I was acutely aware of how bad a combination that really was but it all worked out OK.  And the bruising is already mostly going away.

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