Teardrop: Painting the Interior

— on February 26, 2019 by in Teardrop Camper

During our first trip, I hadn’t painted the interior, but that needed to change. As is normal for me, I found myself in a bit of a rush leading up to my latest trip back to TX. Because I was going to spend at least some time on the beach in wet conditions, I wanted the wood protected.

Teardrop Interior

Teardrop camper interior sprayed with a semi-gloss white paint.

After a fair amount of filling in holes and sanding, I masked off the interior and sprayed it with the HVLP sprayer.

Teardrop camper interior sprayed with a semi-gloss white paint.

Teardrop camper interior sprayed with a semi-gloss white paint.

The HVLP sprayer struggles with latex paint. It’s to thick for the gun I bought. I end up thinning it more than the directions allow for. Even so, I run the gun at higher pressure than it’s rating to get good coverage. I’m sure there is some risk of failure in the gun, but most consumer products (which is what this is) are built with a 2x to 3x safety margin at each design stage. Your mileage (and safety) may very.

The other issue with HVLP is that you need a high volume compressor. I have a moderate compressor. I end up having to let it catch up frequently when spraying a large area like this.

Galley Counter

I’d previously painted the galley counter top using a roller, but wasn’t happy with the finish. The surface also got dinged up during the remainder of the build. While I was in spray mode, I lightly sanded down the counter top to clean up the surface. Then I resprayed it using the HVLP gun.

Repainting the teardrop galley's counter top and then coating with polyurethane.

Once the blue was dry, I sprayed a couple of coats of water based spar urethane onto it, and all the other horizontal surfaces (interior front storage area, shelves, etc).

Coating the various wear surfaces in the trailer with paint and then spar urethane.

Teardrop galley dividers reinstalled in the trailer after painting.

I failed to take pictures of the process, but I also spent some time re-engineering the storage for the peninsula so that it would fit snugly in the galley with some felt strips. In theory they should protect it from marking up.

Teardrop galley peninsula - still marking on the edge.

Unfortunately as you can see in this photo, the storage area is still marking the edge of the peninsula.

Other Punch List Items

I also rushed to finish the exterior trim around the seam between the roof and walls. The edges are made from 1″ angle aluminum bent using a set of  metal expanders and shrinkers. I didn’t really take any pictures during the process :(.

Here is the finished trim installed.

Teardrop in front of sunset at Caprock Canyon. Note installed exterior edge trim.

The main drawback of the expander and shrinker is that they leave ugly teeth marks in the aluminum. The “right” way to make these trim elements would be with a roll bender designed to work with angle stock.

The observant among you will note the missing fender and the orange strap over the top. More on that in a future blog. Needless to say, the long drive back to TX shook out a few kinks…