Monday, March 14, 2011

Trip Prep Comment Response

I.M. Vayne, yeah I know my limitations, but right now the biggest one is where the RV located making it difficult to try out new ideas. I need to make a plan and go with it and pray I get it right.

Big Matt, the coax cable in that picture is the main feed from the distribution box in the top middle cabinet. They stuffed a VCR, distribution box and digital converter into that little middle cabinet. I haven’t decided where I’m going to put the Blu-Ray player yet but I have an idea, I need to scope out the path from the upper cabinets to the lower cabinet and go from there. 


There already is an electrical outlet in the cabinet that I can reposition, there is plenty of slack. I am going to re-paint the wooden trim plate that surrounds the opening and I’m also going to install a decorative panel that will match the trim in color, most likely the same color or darker than it is right now. I have seen too many retro fit cabinets that people tried to make look like the oak cabinets and have not seen one that I liked. They all looked like, well, somebody tried and failed to make it look factory and I lack the ability to make stained woodwork look good, this is a limitation I know I have and have come to terms with it.

The only people who I have seen get a factory look is the folks from Semi-True Tales of Our Life on the Road. They had a company do the work and as you can see, it looks the factory did it. I lack the funds right now to put in the right TV and have somebody do the woodwork.

  Old TV[4]  New TV[4]

I am a “make it look like the manufacturer did it” kinda guy so no plywood for me, it has to look good when the TV is stored. I am going to put in a wooden panel (I have to go to my 2nd home “Home Depot” and look at wood) and then create a mount where the TV will hang from it like a picture. This panel will also house 2 12 volt outlets with a factory rocker on off switch and maybe a CB radio, all set up so when we are driving the TV will be stored under the couch and the panel will hopefully look like part of the dash, when parked, the TV will look permanent. There will be a shelf built into this panel where I can put my wallet, phone and other small items so the entire panel isn’t flat making it look out of place.

Samsung has a mount like this for their 9000 series LCD LED TV and I think I can re-create it for our use, that, I actually am good at. I may actually sell the one TV and purchase a newer 22” LED Samsung that’s about half an inch thick which will fit the diameter width wise perfectly, exactly 21.5 inches wide, the same as the cabinet. So maybe I can deal with a smaller screen.

The only issue will be height and I think I can build the panel so the Samsung Blu-Ray player also fits. If I can get the RV home this week I’ll dry fit everything and take some pictures. I still have to map out the wiring that the dealer modified and fix what they broke, none of the 3 other coax cables in the top left cabinet were connected to anything but I’ll get that sorted out when I can get some time inside the rig at home where I have the tools to do the job and power without using the genny.

For the TV power, coax and HDMI cable there will be a port similar to the kind you see in new Ford’s. A round vent port, these cables will come out through this port when needed and when not needed they will be put back inside this port. I already know how I can do this and not have to worry about fishing them out each time we put up the TV.

The brain is running high gear, I hope I can put into action what is floating around in my head! The good news is, I can do most of this work from home since I have the mounting plate from the old TV at home.



Donna K said...

Didn't understand a thing you said but I admire your determination!! Looks like you are making progress anyway so that's good.

Erik's RV Blog said...


Let's hope I know what I was going for when I wrote this! I was up a good portion of the night thinking about it! :)

Big Matt said...

If you go with new enough hardware to replace the existing, you can simply go with HDMI and a single coax for the cable TV Hooks and then add a selector box for all the other devices connected to it.

The plywood I refer to IS made of Oak, we used it to make some rather nice, but somewhat heavy wardrobe/entertainment cabinets for homes.

Oak Plywood, made of oak, but comes in nice and easy to cut and work 4x8 sheets or 2x2 if you get the smaller section boards you can find at Home Depot.

Either way, you're going to need to snake some new wires to replace the existing single coax hookup as flat screens need HDMI or component to get that nice wide-screen picture.

Rick and Paulette said...

Good luck with your project, you certainly seem to know what you're doing!

Diana said...

Well I see that you've kept busy while I was away! Good for you, just a couple more weeks!
Love Di ♥

Erik's RV Blog said...

Matt, I can't afford to modify to a full HDMI setup yet so the distribution box will stay coax but the Blu-Ray will be HDMI. I just have to plan on where I'm going to put it.

Thanks for the info on the Oak plywood, I'll check into it tomorrow.

Rick and Paulette, I talk a good game, lets home I can deliver! ;)

Diana, yep, two more weeks and we're off no matter what state the TV is in! If I have to drive up there with a gaping hole in the dash, I'll do it! :)

Sue and Doug said...

sounds like you know what you are doing! lost me after the first paragraph though!..not an electrican or a cable guy but I can bake a cake and clean really well!

Alan and Marilyn McMillan said...

My husb does the same thing -- thinks & plans how he can do something before he tries. When we became fulltimers in '09, we stowed our 40" TV (it was in our stix & brix) behind the chair in the MH & drove from AR to our dgt's in NC. Then my husb removed the 100lb TV from the entertainment center & installed the 40" flat screen -- he did a great job -- can't wait to see your finished project.

Erik's RV Blog said...

Sue and Doug, I can't cook or bake, well I can for me but nobody else will eat it! I can BBQ pretty darn well though. :)

Alan and Marilyn McMillan, the hard part is going to make this look good with the TV stowed! The TV is going to cover the opening when in use but as anal as I am it has to look good. I have an idea that I'm going to post about tonight.