#8 Ceiling, Stubborn Screws and Lifting The Floor

The first part of the day was finishing off the previous day’s job. The lower inside panels had been sprayed with a thick, sticky grease-like substance; it had coated the panels and collected in all the lower nooks and crannies. It needed to be removed before we could stick the sound deadening on, so at first we were annoyed by this stuff, it seemed messy and unnecessary however we did later find out that it is used to prevent rust on panels. Still annoying but hey, at least it actually had a purpose other than to just make us work harder! We used an old ice scraper to remove the worst of the residue, and then methylated spirits and a tough cloth to clean the remainder off, leaving the nice shiny panel underneath.

The sound deadening continued until all the panels were done, including the ceiling. The ceiling was much easier than I had anticipated, considering the various sections and grooves. We opted to put squares in the middle flat sections, fully filling the space, and then long strips out either side reaching to the edge of the van. With a little patience it was easy to get the material to contour to all the grooves and ridges and coverage was good. With some left on the roll we removed the door cards and did what we could on the flat spaces that were available to us. The cutting, sticking and roller-ing were predominantly my jobs – although on some sections and pretty much all of the ceiling we went for a one sticks, one rolls approach!


We were aiming to take out the foot plates and the floor ply by the end of the day so when not assisting me, Callum had spent a fair chunk of the morning removing some very stubborn screws from the floor. Cheap screws that had been chewed up on the way in, so the drill/screwdriver had little to no purchase and several had rusted stuck into the metal floor. We tried the age-old trick of placing an elastic band on the screw head to create grip, but unfortunately the extremely stuck nature of our screws meant this was fruitless. We ended up using an angle grinder to remove the small section of ply directly adjacent to the screw and then proceeded to drill the screws out. This is one of those jobs that should take 10 minutes and ended up taking an hour, not the end of the world and I am sure will we come across more of this as we go, but still – boo to screws!

Eventually we got the floor ply out; it lifted out in three sections and we were delighted to find the van floor in as great a condition as the rest of the van. Clean and tidy with very few marks, no damage and no extra work needed. We had read/heard horror stories of people lifting the floor to find giant rust patches and holes, I didn’t think this was going to happen due to the age and condition of our beloved van, but you never know what that wood is hiding!

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Clean and shiny van floor

We gave it a sweep and a bit of a polish to remove any grub patches and then proceeded to coat all the holes and exposed metal with the red oxide primer, just as we had done with the walls.

Another day done!

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