Underbed Storage Shelf & Winterizing Kit

Underbed storage shelf for books. As you can see, I am NOT a carpenter!

This evening I got the book storage shelf  under the rear twin bed finished, except for sanding and protecting with a couple of coats of polyurethane.  The bottom of the shelf legs had to be cut out to accommodate all the water and electrical lines beneath it.  I will secure the sides to the fiberglass benches with a square of 3 M foam tape to keep them from sliding.  That will be easy to remove whenever I need access to the plumbing and electrical below.

I decided to leave the bottom open so warm air can circulate underneath in winter.   That should help keep the water lines from freezing when we are cold weather camping.  But I did add a strip of molding to protect them from getting bumped.

When we travel, I like to take my wild mushroom reference books.  I don’t need access to them unless I happen upon mushrooms I want to identify.  But I dearly love having them with me in case I need them.  We will continue to keep our clothes storage baskets in front of the shelf.  We will still have plenty of room for them because the shelf protrudes a couple of inches less than the old slanted raceway board did.

The reason I decided to put the shelf back there is that the tongue weight of our trailer is awfully high.  This will move a little more weight off the tongue, while still leaving plenty for towing stability.

Winterizing kit installed. I’ll just remove the little brass cap, and screw on a hose to the jug of antifreeze.

I had thought I needed to install a hot water bypass kit.  But I discovered that I already had one.  I just didn’t recognize it because the bypass lever is in the back of the valve so you have to locate it by feel.  (Thanks for telling me about that, Lynne!)

So all I had left to do was install the winterizing kit.  It was a very easy, intuitive installation.  So now, when it’s time to winterize, all I have to do is bypass the water heater, remove the brass cover in front of the winterizing kit valve,  screw on the hose to the jug of antifreeze,  turn the valve on the winterizing kit to bypass (the lever for it is also in the back), and turn the pump on.  It will pump antifreeze through the system directly from the jug.

Sure beats having to use 8-9 gallons of antifreeze to fill the water heater like I did last year…. only because I didn’t know I already had a  hot water bypass!

Custom Coffee Shelf for the Casita!

Custom coffee shelf for the Casita

No more knocked over coffee cups!

After knocking a cup of coffee over in bed the last time we were out in the Casita, I decided I really needed a little window mounted coffee shelf.

So I posted on the Casita Forum asking Rob (who is known for his superb Casita mods) for ideas on how to build a small, stable window shelf.

Instead of answering me, he wrote me that he would build one for me, and asked how I envisioned the shelf and what dimensions I wanted it to be.

Casita Mod -- small coffee table

The shelf couldn't possibly be more perfect for me!!!

Since I wasn’t sure how to draw or describe the shelf, I told Rob that it needed to hold a coffee cup and a ballpoint pen, and to use his best judgment on how to build it.

Today I got the shelf in the mail, and it is beyond my wildest expectations.  A truly thoughtful touch is that the surface where the cup sets is white Formica, so I won’t even have to use a coaster on it.

Despite his expert instructions on how to install it, I screwed up the first time.  But Rob very patiently told me how to realign the shelf and angle the screws to make it a perfect fit.

Custom shelf Casita mod

Perfect little bedroom!

I truly don’t have words to describe how much I love and appreciate this little shelf.  I think it is probably the most wonderful gift I’ve ever received….  it was designed for the little Casita that I love by a master craftsman with his own hands… solely because he wanted to do it!!!

I wanted to do something special for Rob and Linda to show my appreciation, but they said no.  They said do something special for someone who is not expecting it…. Pay It Forward.

I have the blinds down for cleaning, but when they are re-installed they will cover the shelf mount when the shelf is removed for storage.

I’m stumbling for words right now and they won’t come.  So I’ll just sign off and post the pictures for you to enjoy!  🙂

This shows the latch on the bottom that holds the pegs into the base.

The pegs slide into the holes in the base, then the base is locked to the shelf

The shelf base is mounted to the window frame

When I reinstall the blinds, they will cover the shelf mount during the day when the shelf is not in use.

The shelf is stored in an overhead cabinet when not in use.



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