rosy progress report / september 24

‘Vick and I are experiencing very sore muscles (and each a very minor facial injury) this week.

We got a lot done last Saturday! Funny thing is, the camper still looks pretty much the same as it did when we got there – the mess just keeps getting rearranged.

We have been sweating the kitchen removal – which is hilarious, because, in our camper, the kitchen is literally one lower cabinet and one upper cabinet, each about 5’ wide. It’s just the wires and the plumbing and the gas lines… oh my! It’s so much to deal with, and could be dangerous if done incorrectly.

We (loose “we”… Arnavick was most of the muscle here) managed to get it done with one very long break and a trip to the hardware store. Having the right size wrench makes a world of difference when disconnecting gas lines for the stove/oven.

Pretty much everything in this camper is riveted into the interior skin, so to get the cabinet out, we used a tack puller, hammer, and elbow grease to pop all the rivets out. 

Then there were the gas lines. Of the approximate 40 wrenches we have, we didn’t have a single on that fit the nut that was holding the gas line to the stove. No adjustable wrench either. That’s when we hit the wall.

Arnavick wasn’t feeling good, and we were both hungry, so we went home. After some lunch, though, we both got a second wind and decided to run by the hardware store for the right size wrench (as well as an adjustable one for good measure).

We also picked up a strap wrench, which came in handy for loosening the slip nuts connecting the sink drains to the pipes. 

A few turns of a wrench later, and the gas lines and pipes were disconnected – voila!

That made it easy peasy to pull the stove and the cabinet out! No more kitchen! It looks pretty much the same, but it was a check mark next to a to-do, and we’re satisfied by that! So here it is, an anticlimactic before and after of pre- and post-kitchen removal!

With Kitchen:

Without Kitchen:

Anyone else have reservations removing the kitchen like we did? What got you through it?

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our awning works?!?!

Arnavick got really brave last weekend and decided to pull open our awning!

When we bought Rosy, her prior owner told us the canvas was trashed. We were expecting a rotted, nasty mess.

You guys, LOOK AT THIS AWNING RIGHT HERE!

It’s in pretty darn good shape compared to the image we had in mind. And the colors! The colors match our beloved exterior striping! Swoon!

So, there IS a little problem… well, two little problems. 
One, there’s some gunk at the very top of the awning. We will have to give it a good washing to see whether it’s just gunk, or if the canvas is rotting. I’ve never wished so hard for something to be gunk. 

Two, the thread came out of the seam that’s right by the door, causing a hole. I can sew really well, but I don’t know how to go about fixing this problem. I don’t want to take the awning off, and I am not confident in my sewing when I have to raise my hands over my head to do so. The great news is, the fabric there is intact.

I was thinking to possibly just gorilla glue the seam back together? Is that crazy?

rosy progress report / september 4

We’ve been hard at work pulling apart miss Rosy the Argosy, and I realized that I don’t really have an update here, just on social. Let’s take a look at the state of things shall we? Here is a progression of what we’ve done so far:

We’ve pulled out the following:

  • Five divider walls (1 wall-dining to kitchen, 2 walls-kitchen to bedroom, 2 walls-bedroom to bath)
  • Both twin beds
  • Upper cabinets above beds
  • Various brackets and metal framework

It took us two full days over two weekends to do all of that werk werk werk werk werk. In the Texas heat, y’all. At least we plug in the trailer and run the AC while we work.

Demo day on TV consists of folks smashing up cabinets with a sledge hammer, and pulling wreckage to the curb to be picked up by a disposal company. Demo day in real life, when you don’t have a Hollywood budget and have to be careful about the frame, walls, and windows of your camper, consists of hammering or drilling out rivets one by one, and removing hundreds of screws individually. We are replacing all of the particle board pieces with real wood, so we are being careful not to damage any pieces so that we can use them to measure. I REALLY don’t want to do the math it would take to measure out those Airstream curves.

We feel like we’re making pretty good progress! It’s hard doing our nine-to-fives and school all week when all we want to do is be working on Rosy! Gotta pay that reno bill, though, ya know?

Anyone have any reno stories to share? Post ’em in the comments, we’d love to hear from you!

momentus moment alert!

Heyyyooo we just received the package for the very first item that we purchased for Rosy the Argosy! Exciting times!


Let me just tell you a crazy story. Friends, we purchased our trailer from Northeast Ohio. And we live in North Texas. We drove from North Texas to Northeast Ohio – 1,200 miles, not knowing for sure whether she was towable ALLLLLL the way home. We get there, and Rosy has a lot of surface rust on her tongue, but it’s only due to street salt from Ohio roads. After getting her all new tires, we were confident that she could make the drive.

And make it she did. ALLLLL the way home. ALLLLL the way to my parents driveway. The full 1,200 miles, and even through some sick thunderstorms and torrential rain in the Terrell, TX area. And four hours later, when we were trying to put a lock on it, the coupler broke. Broke! The metal. actually. broke! It blows my mind that we drove all that way without any issues, and it breaks in front of my parents house. After we unhitched (and ate dinner). Where she would be parked for at least a few days anyway. Wild.

I’m not here to discuss divinities, my beliefs, yours, or anyone else’s. But, WOW did we feel like that was a blessing! We are so grateful we made it here without anyone getting hurt. And now we’ve got a coupler repair kit that we can put on our gal! That is…. once we get the rust off of her tongue.

So… anyone want to share their best tips for painting our tongue once we get the rust off? 

XO – J

rosy the argosy – the before tour

If we’re gonna chronicle our renovation progress on Rosy the Argosy, we must start with the obligatory “before” tour, yes? Follow me…

Rosy is a 1979 model Airstream Argosy. She is 27′ long. The thing about the Argosy models that’s different than other Airstreams is that their exterior is white, not the shiny silver most people think of when they hear “Airstream”. Ours is the first Argosy I’ve ever seen with green stripes on the outside. I’ve only ever seen orange or blue striping. We are going to do our darnedest to preserve that striping! If it doesn’t make it through the reno and a vigorous exterior cleaning, we’ll replace it with an exact replica. We love the retro look it gives her! She’s a little rusty on the outside in some spots, but we plan on brushing/sanding/sandblasting and re-painting the rough parts.

We have yet to open our awning, but we’re told that the canvas is trashed. Sad face. The good news is, we can buy a custom awning to match the green stripes. The bad news is, it’s an expensive fix. We’ll post on that when the time comes.

Shall we go inside?


(we are the bottom layout in above)

Rosy’s plumbing and electric work are intact – impressive for a gal her age! She’s outfitted with a seating area, fold out dining table, kitchen with 4-burner gas stove and oven, twin beds, a back bath with a commode, sink and bath tub, three storage closets, and overhead storage cabinets throughout.

We’re keeping the bath and kitchen where they’re located but replacing the breaking, aging plastic and particle board with new, high quality materials. The twin beds will be pulled and replaced with a murphy-style full or queen bed and storage cabinets. The dining and seating area will also remain in the same spot, but will be updated with newer, better materials and a style that is uniquely #teamjamavick.

Perhaps our favorite feature (and part of how we chose her name) is her rose colored glasses!

Her previous owner tinted the wrap-around windows in front! We love the ROSY shadows the tint casts in the dining “room”! It’s weird, and we’re keeping it.

We have TONS to do before getting Rosy live-in ready, and we’ll post the ups, downs, ins, and outs as we go!

Happy camping, everyone!