Sunday, May 03, 2015

Modern lights for a vintage trailer

 

After our amazing trip to Yosemite, I immediately came home and started planning another trip to Yosemite in the fall. Since the campgrounds in the valley are ‘dry camping’ – no electric or water, I started researching how long my battery would last. When the battery runs out, my lights and furnace stops working, and the Airstream becomes an aluminum tent! So I decided it was time to bite the bullet and invest in LED lighting for the trailer.

I had looked into this two years ago, but wasn’t ready to spend the cash. I contacted Dan at LED4RV.com because he was highly recommended on Airforums.com. People reported back that he helped them pick out the right bulbs, and if there were any problems he made it right. I only want to do this once, so that sounded good to me! We discussed it via email, and finally over the phone to work out the details on which bulbs would fit my vintage cone lamps, and a week later it was in my hands!

The square ceiling fixtures were the only tricky part – he sells a kit of mixed color LED strips that are adhesive backed, so they need to be stuck into place. But that only took about 15 minutes per fixture. The rest of the bulbs all just plugged in exactly like the 12v bulbs had.

The finished product has just the right color of light to give it the same cozy feeling inside it has always had, and the quality of the light itself feels even brighter.

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So that’s the tour – all 17 feet of it! While I was in there I de-winterized, cleaned the screen on the ceiling vent, tested the water heater and the furnace, pulled out the broken shower hose that needs replacing, and tidy-ed up a bit. Now we just need the annual trip to the tire guys to have the running gear checked out for the season, and we will be ready for our 12th year of camping in our little 1968 Airstream Caravel.