Sunday, September 20, 2015

Food Cart Project Part XXIX: Shelving!

I was hoping to continue with the plumbing this weekend, but my tankless water heater has yet to arrive, and I'm kind of stuck from going any further until I have that, so I spent the past few days dialing in the shelving. What I'd originally put up was pretty flimsy plywood, which was in place as a stopgap because I had a bunch of leftover material. I replaced that with 1/2" MDF, and while I was at it I decided to expand it a bit. I imagine the Multnomah County Health Department will be more comfortable with this than the barely painted, rough plywood. Here are a couple shots of that:

My cousin Barry's wife Shellane had an audition in town, for a commercial for Haggen Supermarkets, so they came down from Seattle with the kids. We had brunch across the street at Broder Nord, and they had a look through the cart. Barry and Shellane ran a bar in Queen Anne back in the day, and now have a bottle shop up in Lake City; it's always good to have someone with some experience in the food service industry take a walk through and not find anything too out of whack. And of course, it was great to see these guys...

So, with any luck, I'll have some more plumbing to show off next weekend. For now, I'm happy with the shelves.

Sunday, September 13, 2015

Food Cart Project Part XXVIII: Plumbing Begins.

Having picked up the sinks and first round of supplies last weekend, I was able to jump into the plumbing side of things over the last few days. The first step was to install the water pump to the wall:

Next was to run the cold line from the fresh water tank to the pump:

And then to continue it from the pump to the T-connections which will lead to the cold faucets on the ware and hand sinks:

Here's how all of that looks from underneath, with the sinks and their counter back in place (if you look closely at the fresh water tank, you can see the "cage" I built for it out of 2x4s, which I then painted white; this is to help the tank keep its shape when full):

You might have noticed that there isn't any copper anywhere to be seen. I used what's known as "pex," which stands for cross-linked polyethylene. It's pretty much standard nowadays in mobile, as well as residential, plumbing applications. The connections basically screw on to the pex, and create a seal (other connection types include using copper compression rings, and expanding the tubing with a plastic "shape memory" collar that shrinks back to its original size).

After all of that was in place, I installed the door for the water:

Here's what that looks like from inside the cart:

The large hole will be connected to the fresh water tank's inlet with about 1-1/2" esophageal tubing, while the smaller hole will be connected to the tank's air vent with 1/2" tubing (the door itself, of course, not being air-tight). A piece of plywood, painted white and with a couple of holes cut out for the tubing, will finish it up nicely, and I'll get some of the insulation packed back in there.

Before I can go any further, of course, I'll need the tankless water heater and the gray water tank. Those are on order and should arrive sometime this week. So, by the end of next weekend, I should have some more plumbing in place for you to check out...

Saturday, September 5, 2015

Food Cart Project Part XXVII: Plumbing is Nigh...

Lots of forward movement on the cart this weekend. I headed to Pitman Restaurant Supply on Friday to pick up my sinks. I had to do a fair amount of re-engineering on the counters on Thursday, as I'd designed them for a three compartment ware sink without drain pans, but per an update in Multnomah County regulations, a drain pan on either side of the the sink is now required (glad I found out about that before buying the sink!). I got that sorted out, however, cut out a couple of holes in the counter for the hand sink and the ware sink, and voila, my sinks are now in place:

I also visited my plumbing guy, Rick, at Curtis Trailers this weekend, and picked up the majority of my plumbing supplies. The gray water tank and tankless water heater are still on order, but the fresh water tank, pump, water lines, and various fittings are now in possession. Here's the fresh water tank:

The ware sink will need a faucet, obviously, and I'll need to build a cage out 2X4s for the fresh water tank to keep the sides from bulging out when it's full, but I feel pretty good about this weekend's progress. Curtis Trailers, by the way, is Portland's go-to for RV supplies, and they have a couple of really nicely restored vintage camping trailers on display up in the mezzanine in their showroom. This one's a 1937 Coleman Roadhouse:

So, that's where I am so far. The next couple of weekends will be devoted to plumbing, then the electrical and exhaust hood work will begin. Stay tuned!