Aluminum Shower Walls

I can’t help it. Small crack in shower wall, gee, wouldn’t this be a good excuse to fix that and get a nice aluminum partition for the kitchen in the bargain? Ooh, and now might be the only chance to get the ceiling down and do some electrical work…

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The ceiling skin may look a little short to you. That’s because I always cut the long panel into shorter lengths so that I can take it down and put it up single-handed.

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And this Airstream needs to be ready to roll on 16 July…somebody just shoot me, please.


I won’t go through all the exasperations of getting the shower installed, ee-gads and yikes! It looks great, but I’m concerned that the flexing of the shell will damage the strongly riveted joints. The floor still needs to be redone from the old pattern that fit the old closet, some fabric on the chair foam, and the upper shelf and new closet needs aluminum doors. All in due time, as they say.

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the bathroom: the original shower pan is still used and in good shape. the sink and toilet layout are the same, but the plastic counter and sink have been replaced. the new aluminum sliding door for the bathroom is in shop getting riveted together today–you can see the closet door, which has similar construction, partially fabricated and leaning on the band saw in the picture below. The water heater cover, visible next to the toilet, is an easily removable aluminum shroud.

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The outside corner–it’s not just a lap joint between the two panels. There is also a 1″ “L” channel riveted on the outside. This edging copies the drawer front appearance.

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The inside corner–this 3/4″ “L” channel provides a bed for the flush-bucked rivet tails and holds the FRP securely. You can see clearly here tht the wall to pan seal is a caulked butt joint. The pop rivet tails are basically flush with the surface of the pan. They retain the pan due to their expansion in the hole. You can see that the flange along the edge is NOT over the FRP–it’s on the other side of the panel. The rivet heads are the only restraint for the top edge of the FRP. The post 115 is in error. You can see the flange along the shell in the photo above. I had considered making an “upside down lazy L” shaped reinforcing strip to run along the top edge of the pan and then rivet all the way through the panel, but so far that doesn’t seem to be needed. The existing pop rivets can always be drilled out and the strip added later.

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The grip edge–the edge of the panel was folded into a “J” and then an “L” shape was riveted inside to close the J. Caulk provides the watertight joint. This joint is stiff, strong, and provides a very comfortable handhold. The wood grain in the right photo is looking out through the bathroom door to the the hallway floor.

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