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  • Sarah Harrington

The walls & ceiling

Updated: Jul 5

We insulated the walls and ceiling and covered them with plywood and a beadboard insert in the ceiling. Before starting on this portion of the project, being in the bus was like being in an oven. In the middle of a heat wave, the timing wasn't ideal. But since it was the next phase of the job, onward we went.


Our goal is to make the bus as comfortable as possible- which means as much insulation as possible. We used a combination of 1.5 inch, 1 inch, 3/4 inch, and fanfold polystyrene closed-cell insulation sheets. They were easy to cut and slid into the gaps between the bus ribs nicely.


-For the first layer up against the steel bus wall we slid 1.5 inch sheets into the gaps between the bus ribs.

-Next we built "studs" for exterior walls out of ripped 2x4s to make 2x2s.

-Once the framing was complete, then we filled those gaps between studs with another layer of 1 inch insulation sheets.

-Repeat every cavity and also for the ceiling.

-Next came a wall covering. We chose 1/4 inch plywood because it is thin, affordable, and can be used right up the wall and bent along the curve of the ceiling as well. Wafer head screws were perfect to hold it in place along the ceiling curve, screwed into the 1x3 studs we had framed out the ceiling with. Simple brad nails held the plywood up on the walls. Pushing the ceiling plywood along the bend was somewhat difficult and required several people to push it and a "kickstand" to help hold it in place, among other things. We really like the end result of the original bus curved ceiling though, so it was worth the work.


All in all we spent a small fortune on insulation, but hopefully it makes the difference between a miserable heatbox of a bus or a pleasant vacationing vehicle.



J keeps morale boosted with her constant smiles and happy outlook.


H is framing the walls with 2x2 studs.

O is helping with the framing.

Dad and C have a planning session. E likes to listen and make suggestions too :)

E is closing up that emergency exit door permanently.


This was the kickstand and "other methods" I mentioned above :) We figured out better ways the further we got.




Our family are HUGE fans of the movie The Money Pit with Tom Hanks. If you haven't seen it before, go...NOW. It's hilarious!! And basically our life in a movie. This is a twist on a quote from that movie that we have used thousands of times through the years. "We have … (insert whatever long awaited basic necessity you've been waiting for... and don't forget to whimper a little while doing it) ...walls!!"


Just taking a quick break.





Forgive the no makeup and sweat ring- we're busy making memories :)


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