Monday, March 14, 2016

Making the Zinger 28bh Our Own

We are loving our new 2016 Zinger 28bh.  It is much roomier than our 2000 Gulfstream Conquest.  However, we needed to make it feel more like home.  I had done some modifications on the Conquest and needed to start working on the Zinger.  Here are some of the things I have done.

1.  Making Egee's bunk more comfortable for her.  She likes soft and cushy, but the three inch bunk mattress was not providing the comfort she wanted.  I went online and purchase a contoured 2 inch mattress pad to add to the bunk.  I went to the local home improvement store and purchased a roll of solar radiant insulation.  I lined the bunk with the insulation (Under the bunk is an outdoor storage compartment.  The insulation allows the heat and cold from penetrating through to her bed.)  I placed the mattress pad under the bunk mattress.  The mattress is made of the same material and she liked the soft cover of the original mattress.  I just had to trim a bit with scissors on the mattress pad to conform to the bunk and everything was completed.  She is much happier!

Plywood base with pass through

Using Velcro to keep the insulation from moving.

Placing the insulation down.  I wanted to make sure we could still use the pass through.

Used a small piece over the hinge and wedge it between the other two pieces.

Mattress pad was the perfect size and just needed a slight trim.

Top mattress placed back on the bed and covers put on for the night!

2.  Adding wire shelves to the upper cabinets and pantry.  This is an easy project.  I had removed the wire shelving from our Conquest and placed it into the Zinger cabinets.  This greatly expand the storage! 

3.  A pretty shower curtain.  The Zinger came with pretty much a shower liner.  I wanted a pop of color in the bathroom.  Camping World happened to have this curtain on clearance.  It was a leftover 4th of July style, but works well for us.  I like the bold color!

4.  Medicine cabinet organization is a must.  I had things placed orderly in the cabinet, but with towing the trailer to the campground, things fall and shift.  I finally decided to increase the organization and make things a bit more permanent. 

I took a 7 day pill organizer and found images on the internet to print out to label the meds in each container.  This took care of the several small bottles of meds in the cabinet.  I then placed a piece of Velcro to the container and adhered it the wall. The small wire basket keeps odds and ends from toppling over.

I placed a small screw in the top of the toothbrush holder and attached it to the shelf cleat.  The brushes are easy to remove and place back!  I suspended the razor by attaching the razor cover to the cleat using Velcro.  The toothpaste is secured using a binder clip hanging on a screw.  I placed a wall hook in the cabinet to hold hair ties.  A small screw holds the contact case.  A small manicure kit is attached to the wall using Velcro as well as the extra contact box.  Everything else is easy to set back upright when we reach our destination.

5.  Corralling electronics in the bunks is on going.  I stumbled upon an idea and decided to use it for our bunks.  I went to Lowes and purchased two of the larger air vent directors.  They are about $5 each.  I then expanded them and screwed them into the studs of the bunk walls.  I placed them above the electrical outlets, so that the kids can charge their electronics easily without cords all over the bunk.  I like the clear look and they can hold a notebook or a small book with ease.

6.  Bunks get hot!  We bought the kids small fans and they clipped them to the mattress at night to circulate air.  I really didn't like that.  So, I drilled a small hole in the clip and secured it to a stud overhead in the bunk.  I then used Command Strip cord hooks to run the cord along the ceiling of the bunk and down the wall to the outlet.  The fan can be positioned up or down and rotated for comfort. 

7.  Finding the remotes!  I'm sure we aren't the only ones that lose the remotes to our televisions and stereos.  I placed Velcro on the backs of the remotes and attached them to the side of the entertainment center.  As soon as we finish watching the television or listening to the radio, back goes the remote!

8. Cups and wasted space.  I use to have the cups stacked and laying in the cabinet.  It was such a waste of space.  I went to Wally World and purchased a couple of plastic baskets.  Now the cups are upright and easy to see. 

9.  Screen doors are wonderful to let the breeze through.  Ours even came with the clear see through panel.  However, this panel is lower than the natural tendency of a person wanting to 'push' the door open.  I bought two screen door handle cross bars for our camper.  I love them!  It makes it easier to grab the door when inside the trailer and trying to shut the door.  Hubs placed them at the right height where you naturally want to reach to open the door.  I think this will save our screens!  Plus the one in the bathroom doubles as a towel bar!

10.  Plastic storage drawers are great to use in the trailer.  I have two in a bottom cabinet to keep super absorbent towels, clothes pins, and laundry detergent pods.  I placed a smaller set in the kid's wardrobe closet to keep bug spray, suntan lotion, and odds and ends.  This freed up drawer space under the wardrobe for the kids to put some of the clothes.  We can still hang clothes in the wardrobe!

We use the right side for storing soda and extra water.  The grip style shelf liners are perfect to keep things from moving.

11.  Pantry organization is vital.  We haven't gone out more than a weekend, but have a week long trip in the works.  I know food storage and organization is a must.  So, I have been trying to get the pantry in order.  I placed 5 screws around the upper edge of the pantry into the cleats.  Then I hung larger binder clips from the screws.  I will replace the screws with cup hooks when I remember to buy them!  The binder clips serve two purposes: 1. keep bags closed 2. hang bags to free up shelf space.  I also have a wire shelf running long ways in the pantry.  I placed plastic bins on the top shelf to help corral food items.  The bins haven't tipped in all of our trips.  Under the wire shelf, is the perfect height for canned goods.  I have a bit of space to the right of the wire shelf for larger cans and boxes.  I'm hoping this provides ample space for the week's worth of food.

Pantry before reorganizing!

Pantry after adding the screws and clips. 

12.  I had a hard time finding a small silverware organizer for the drawer in our camper.  I finally found one that fit in width and came with silverware that looked like camping ware at Wally World.  It was about an inch to long, so I cut it and slid it together over the cut.  It works perfect in the drawer.  The other hack you see in the pic is for our paper towel roll.  I didn't want to hang it above the sink and lose the small view from the window.  Under the counter was a perfect spot and even with a full roll of paper towels, the drawer is easily opened without interference. 

13.  Where to hang the keys and sunglasses?  I had purchase a sliding under the counter mug rack and never used it for our house.  I started to ponder and think how could I use it in the camper.  It would be perfect for hanging keys, and sunglasses by our door.  So, I mounted it and it works perfect.  The way the cabinet is, the rack cannot slide which works for us!

14.  Blocking out light and providing insulation.  The overhead vent in the bedroom is great during the day for air flow, but early morning it lets in way to much light!  I used the reflective insulation I bought for the bunk and cut out a piece perfect for the vent.  I used Velcro to attach the piece and now we can sleep in if we want with the glaring sun!  I also cut out a piece for our emergency exit window and placed it between the screen and window.  This darkens the room further and does not interfere with the exit.  The awning shades our other window, so I don't cover it. 

15.  Another space saver for the bathroom is a shampoo, conditioner, and shower gel dispenser.  Our Conquest came with one and I just had to have one for the Zinger.  It keeps all the bottles from cluttering the tub.  I bought mine off Amazon.  It is easy to refill and I am able to keep an eye on how much we have left.

16.  We swapped out the factory shower head with a shower massage head.  It has a good flow and is similar to the one at our house.

Click here for more modifications we have done to our Zinger Bunkhouse.

Click here for easy and frugal ways to stock your travel trailer!