Welcome to the second entry in October’s Medium Mod Contest. One Medium Mod will be published in every Email Alert in October. At the end of the month, we’ll hold a reader vote to determine October’s winner. Click here for information about the 2023 Mod Contest, including how to enter.
Mark Zeisberg, Elkton, Maryland
Camper Kitchen Mods
1994 GMC K2500
1997 Shadow Cruiser
Driving the need for this modification were the two drawers that were ridiculously short in length. They were falling out as we held the pivot handle to ensure quick emptying.
Also, the 25-year-old fiberboard substrate countertop was taking on water and swelling. Finally, room for longer drawers was impeded by the sink and plumbing trap and drain.
As a remodeling contractor with too much storage, I found a piece of leftover Megonite solid surface counter that would fit the space. I took out the old sink and made a template of the space. Access to the plumbing revealed an easy solution.
I turned the sink quarter turn, moved it back, and slightly to the side. That gave space to the trap and actually shortened the drain run. I had to buy one 45-degree fitting for the drain.
We also gained forward counter prep space and have now acclimated to the noticeable stretch when we use the sink bowl. We wanted to add a pullout faucet but there was not suitable room to hang the hose and weight underneath so we placed the old one back in service.
Under mounting the salvaged sink offers a much cleaner and better fit. We also used a small backsplash all the way around just in case we don’t get perfectly level at a campsite.
The backsplash is now integrated into the counter surface using the same material. We used epoxy to make that connection.
Using the old drawer fronts and hardware, we were able to gain about 6 inches in drawer length. This is a major improvement. Now that the drawers meet more normal expectations when pulling them open. They really don’t need the stops we added.
We kept the three-burner cooktop in the same location because we don’t have clearance specifications for that model. I added a hook to the wall and eliminated the articulating arm.
The articulating arm connected the old countertop to the stove cover. I did not want to drill holes in the new countertop so I removed it and put a hook on the wall above the thermostat that keeps the lid from falling down.
Above is a picture of the flex arm LED light at the sink. We have a second one on the ceiling next to the bungee net and use it as a reading light. It’s not part of the kitchen.
Wiring in these little 12-volt flex arm LED reading/utility lights has been a satisfying improvement in the kitchen, and several other rooms of the camper.
Remember, we have a pop-up, so work overhead is very limited.
We also worked on a little wiring, general reinforcement, and storage containment baffles around the water heater and furnace while we had good access. Then, we buttoned the whole thing up.
As life happens, it was eight months before we were able to enjoy this new kitchen for an extended time.
This mod cost less than $20 because it involved salvage materials. The skill level is high when anyone works with solid surface countertops because you use special tools and adhesives.
Disclaimer: The modifications above are submitted by Truck Camper Magazine readers. It is your responsibility to make sure that any do-it-yourself modification project you undertake is safe, effective, and legal for your situation.
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