Ya know….

I started out with this thing, thinking I would just have to update some stuff to bring it up to code.

Well….. I guess I was right.
I just forgot to account for the fact that I would have to completely GUT the inside to do so.  great

PoCo Inspired

Waiting waiting waiting

All of the equipment has been stripped out.
Thanks to my buddy Dave for his help.
And thanks to my brother for letting me borrow his engine crane.
Cause that’s what I needed to get the griddle and fryer out.

It’s set up in the garage so I can play with the layout and so the engineer guy can see things as they are set up currently.





PoCo Inspired

Fabulous darling just fabulous

You can just barely see the drain pipes at the bottom of the sink.

Notice the direction they curve???  Yup that’s how they were set up.
They drain towards the back of the truck ( just under the hand wash sink )
Yet they curve towards the front.   again I say  JEEN  EE US



PoCo Inspired

Coke?? No thanks, I’m trying to cut back.

It came with this coke cooler.
I really like it for the LOOK.
But this sucker pulls 800 watts all day long.

I let it run for a few hours, the compressor never seemed to shut down.

Super cold, but ….



PoCo Inspired

Kijiji Rocks !!

Thanks to Kijiji
I was able to pick up this nice 19 cubic foot fridge for $70.
WAY more capacity.  And the bonus of the freezer.
PLUS it only pulls 200 watts while the compressor is going.
And 3 watts in between compressor fire up.  NICE

If you missed my posting on how to automate your Kijiji searches click here.


PoCo Inspired

So empty

It looks so empty in here now.
Gonna start pulling down panels to see how bad it is.

Insulation from the roof was SOAKED.




PoCo Inspired

Round hole in a square peg

So it’s Nov 2nd and it’s decently warm out!!  YA!!!

It must be 7 degrees C out there.
That’s about 44 F if you are in the USA.
Or if you are in California, thats just west of ” ARE YOU NUCKIN FUTS???

Trust me, here, for November 2, it’s NICE.
People are still wearing shorts and flip flops.
Although they are also wearing mits and parkas at the same time.

Time to figure out this leaking roof deal.

This pic is the inside ceiling panel.

It has a round hole and a round collar that fed up through the ceiling.

It was siliconed to another round collar that protruded through the ceiling.

It got destroyed before I remembered to take a picture.[…]

PoCo Inspired

And theeeenn

Attached to THAT, was ANOTHER round collar.

So the round collar system protruded through the roof.
Only the collars were siliconed together.
Nice job on the collars though,all rolled edges and stuff.

THEN they were covered by this square vent.
Which ( if you have been following along ) you will know is a residential ( HOUSE ) roof vent.

This amazing piece of technology was riveted to the trucks roof.

No gasket, no silicone, no nothing between the vent flange and the roof, just some rivets.
Cant’t imagine why it may have leaked.

There was a generous amount of silicone slathered around the outside of the flange.

When I wire wheeled all that away I also found 2 HUGE
– Like 4 inches long slices in the ROOF !!!
Seems That while Mr. JEEN EE US was cutting the square hole with the jigsaw, he slipped…..and then just kept goin…..   and then did it again ……

Stunning craftsmanship.



PoCo Inspired

Kinda like this

This is a good way to illustrate it.
If this were from the roof view….
The box is the vent and the tube goes up into it.
But the tube below the roof is attached to the ceiling panel.

The tube does not connect to the box in any way, just sort of hovers there inside it.

The vent – doing what vents do – they vent, is full of holes.
Water just pours in these vent holes and down in between the roof and the ceiling panel.
Where the insulation is.

Again  JEEN EE US[…]

PoCo Inspired

At least its square

Other that the extra 2 slices ( which I don’t think you can see ) the hole is square and lines are straight.

I actually never even saw the extra cuts at first until I was inside the truck and looking up.
Which means that they were not sealed from the inside.[…]

PoCo Inspired

View from above

Good shot of the roof.
Complete with the upside bucket where the upblast fan is supposed to be.[…]
PoCo Inspired

From below

From below you can see on the lower right side of the square you can see the huge slice that just sort of veers off.

Maybe Mr JEEN  EE  US was standing while he was cutting the hole, and fell over ??[…]

PoCo Inspired


Like most things I do, I have no clue what I am doing until its done.

Before this, I have never seen a vent up close let alone installed one.
But why should that stop me??

I got lucky and picked one up off Kijiji.  ( actually got it for $5 )

It was a little mucked up.
Had to do some cleaning, but it fine.
The flange was not perfectly straight, but neither was the roof.  I did the best I could.


PoCo Inspired


Silicone the flange, silicone the roof, squeeze it all down, then put in the screws.
Then smoosh it all around inside and out. Seal the screws- inside and out.
And really get those slices inside and out.

Let it dry and cross yer fingers.

Yeah it might look messy, but I wanted to make sure there was no leaks -EVER


PoCo Inspired

Its DRY !!

It rained pretty good overnight and there was no water in the truck !!

So I may not know what I am doing, but it seems that I’m no JEEN  EE  US.

Now I am motivated to see what else is in there.
So I started peeling back the stainless and aluminum skins.


PoCo Inspired

WOod WOod MOre WOod

I knew there was a lot of wood, but wowzers!!

There was a layer of stainless, or aluminum, then wood panel.
Well on one side of the truck.
On the other side was a layer of melamine ( think ) like a counter top.

Then studs, then insulation, and vapor barrier, then ANOTHER layer of wood panel.
Then MORE studs behind that.  So far I think I have gained 6 inches of width.
Which is HUGE in a tiny truck.

Much of the wood is rotted from the roof leakage.  So even IF I wanted to keep wood in the truck ( which I don’t ) it would all have to be replaced anyway.




PoCo Inspired

Oh yeah and this too

Both sides of the truck had these electrical wires UNDER the wood panels.
Sure they were capped. But I’m glad I found them.

And yeah, they were live when I had the power on.  great

What’s the worst that can happen??

So I’m just gonna keep strippin walls…


PoCo Inspired

From the back seat

This is a stiched together shot from the back.

I decided to take out the front walls as well.
I had to, just to get at some of the studs.

This will also allow me to move the front wall forward a bit.
It looks like I can gain about 4 inches.

I know it doesn’t sound like much,
but it might mean I can squeeze in another small drink fridge.

So far I am gaining 4 inches in length, 6 inches in width and about 1.5 inches in headroom.

116 long
74 wide
72 high
618048 cubic inches
357.666667 cubic feet

120 long
80 wide
74 high
710400 cubic inches
411.111111 cubic feet

This is a gain of 54 cubic feet.

And that make it sound like alot.

All in all though,that extra 6 inches of width will help tons.


PoCo Inspired

Back to the back

Getting back to ripping out of the interior.

The hood came down pretty easy.  Mostly held on with rivets.  I hate rivets.
Some of them were aluminum and easily drilled out.
Some were good quality and a pain in the but to drill out.
Some were put in from the front and some from the back … why ?? who knows??


PoCo Inspired

Back to the bones

The back was probably worse than the front.

More wood rot.  The roof was leaking there as well.

Even some mold.  Yeah, it doesn’t get much better.

Click on the main shot to view more WONDERFUL pictures.


PoCo Inspired

Finally reached the back door

Under the wood  ….. what else  … wood.

Seriously???  How much wood can you put in one small truck??
This shot was just the rear doors.
I had already pulled off all of the framing that was on either side.
—  it all kinda fell off  …  the stuff on the doors was a little stubborn.

But c’mon…. really??   I know this thing was built years ago…..  but was there NEVER any concern about fire safety???
Maybe I have just been reading the NFPA96 too many times.
BTW here is a link to it if you want to read it.

But c’mon….. wood studs screwed to the STEEL studs, then covered with wood, then covered with STEEL???   really??

Drywall screws from the OUTSIDE of the truck to hold the wood studs ….

And of course NOTHING is sealed.

Not like it matters, but the back door at least opens.[…]

PoCo Inspired

A full load

The pick up is starting to overflow wit all the wood and garbage that I am pulling out.

It didn’t seem so bad until I started putting it in the pick up.

I am keeping all the metal aside so see what I might re use.

I am guessing 500 – 600 pounds so far.  INSANE.


PoCo Inspired

And the propane tanks

Don’t forget the twin 100 pound propane tanks.
They were about 100 years old.  And STILL mostly full !!
They were probably close to 200 pounds !!!   ok   maybe 150…..

I would guess that with the 2 tanks, the nice 2 stage regulator, the lines, the cage, the checker plate sheet covering the doors……  all in all, probably 500 pounds.

Add that to all the wood in the back of the pickup truck….

I’m guessing that I shed near 1000 pounds already.

Not including the metal I ripped out.


PoCo Inspired

Severe weight loss program

The weight of the grill, deep fryer, and 2 burner HAVE to be at least 500 pounds together.

Hell, I can barely even lift the side of the grill.
I had to use the engine crane to get it out.

So all in all I bet I have taken out at least 1500 pounds of stuff.

That’s the entire weight of the mini truck I used to own.
That thing was a blast to drive.[…]

PoCo Inspired

The floor sucks too

The floor was more of the same.

1st layer was vinyl ( which was destroyed )
2nd Layer was 3/4 inch plywood ( attached with galvanized roofing nails )
3rd layer is some kind of metal…. rotting ….rusting
4th layer is the ACTUAL truck floor. Some kind of wood. ( at least it seems in tact )

The wheel wells are JUST metal, but had the 1st layer of plywood with the roofing nails.
That makes some really nice holes for water to seep in, and just sit between the plywood and metal wheel well.

Its not TOOOO bad, just a few small holes.


PoCo Inspired

In like a lion

It’s been amazing.  Warm temps in the middle of November.  Thank you El Ninio.

But it finally came to an end the other day with a blast of snow and cold and 80 KMH winds.

I don’t HATE winter. But I don’t like it all that much either.
I believe that I have always been a sun worshiper.
But I have accepted my fate.

I have “issues” with winter and my “mood” reflects that.
Couple that with things taking WAY longer with this truck than I wanted.
And now the knowledge that my work will grind to a halt.

Add to that, the fact that I STILL have no answers from anyone for anything…..

Yeah… ok…. I can say it  ….it’s depressing.  I am now Mr. Pissy Pants…
I am trying to fight it, but it’s hard.
I don’t want to DO anything except sit and sulk.[…]

PoCo Inspired

Waiting to exhale

I feel like I’m just holding my breath.
Standing still.

It’s now been a full month since the engineer guy came over.
Have not heard a word.

Found out that a friend of a friend is an engineer.  He has said he can try to help.
Had a quick meeting.  Let’s see where THAT goes.

I cannot make any moves until I get some serious questions answered.

I hate waiting.[…]

PoCo Inspired

Made some progress on the floor

Got down to the bare shit….

Of the floor.

It’s a treated plywood base, with galvanized sheet over top.
A smart person would yank it all and put down fresh stuff.
But even more now with the ABSOLUTE confirmation that this thing holds absolutely NO value as a food truck if I ever sell it, then I must do this thing on the cheap as much as possible.

So the plywood is still in good shape, no rot.
The metal  …. well not the greatest.
I spent some time with the wire wheel and cleaned it up.
Sealed all the seams and corners with silicone.
filled all along the base walls with spray foam.
Went over the whole floor with some spray on undercoating.  ( had a bunch layin around )

It seals well and stays pretty flexible.
While the metal is not perfect, at least it holds its structure.

I’m going to sheet over the floor with plywood, and use screws and construction adhesive…
Plus go up the walls 2 feet with cement board. ( will finish the rest of the walls later)

I plan to do a 3 x 3 inch corner bead out of 22 gauge aluminum ( I have )
It will be a 90 degree bend between the floor and the wall. ( with silicone )

I think without it, the floor and wall will move independently too much.

and then do a coating of this stuff


I have used it before, and it takes one hell of a beating.
This stuff is durable, flexible, and is patchable.
Also I can build up the corners and “cove” it up a min 4 inches – as per our health department regs.

Then give it a light sanding  and top it with some type of epoxy.

So far I have played with this stuff….  and not too impressed.

Next I am going to try this and see.


Our health department wants, smooth easily cleanable, durable floors, coved up min 4 inches with sealed/welded seams.

They actually don’t like the diamond plate stuff, although they will pass it.
Besides….  in our city,the diamond plate floor would run me about 4 – 5 grand.
Or about $3000 if I do it myself.

I did some experimenting and found epoxy coatings adhere well to concrete type surfaces but not so great to the bare wood, so, so far, my plan looks good.

I have done a bunch of mock ups, and hope to get approval from my health department before I finish it.

Worst case scenario, they say no, and I have to put a sheet of vinyl over it all.  But I want to try this.
I saw my buddies truck after 1 season of light use and all his seams need to be repaired already.
And it was professionally done at a pretty high cost.


PoCo Inspired

Well Merry F-in hohoho

Can’t believe it’s nearly Christmas already.

Needless to say I am STILL waiting to hear anything from the engineer.

Now we just got hit with a pretty big snowfall, so I’m gonna start feelin pissy again.

Anyway, was able to get some more experimenting done on the floor.
And I think I have finally got the right combination of things.

The main pic shows my mock up of the floor.
A couple pieces of 2×4 and 2×6 screwed together.

I am going to take my 22 gauge aluminum, and cut it into 6 or 8 inch strips and whatever length is needed.

(with the new toy I picked up on a half price sale)

Nice electric shears.
They even leave a smooth edge.
Figured I will need them when carving out the sheet metal for all kinds of stuff on the truck.

Then instead of putting in a sharp 90 degree bend, I just give it a nice smooth ROLL.
And viola, a perfect cove.

I also think that I will do the wall in 2 sections.
Lower section, about 1 ft high (even with the wheel wells)
Sheet it with plywood but only secure it to the side beams with silicone instead of screws.
I already know that things move. Houses shift, panels move, concrete moves, everything.
So my goal here is to make sure that the FLOOR and the lower wall panel are joined together by this aluminum sheet and screwed to each section.
This SHOULD allow the floor and the lower wall section to act more like one piece when they move a bit.
Hopefully this will mean less chance of the flooring coating coming off.

The top part of the wall section can be screwed to the structural side beams of the truck.
I think it will only be the aluminum panel anyway, so it can just overlap the bottom part a few inches and kinda float on top of it. Maybe some silicone to keep it in place.

I gave it a light sanding first.

Then a couple of 1 inch drywall screws secure the side piece and floor piece together.

And coat with ….



No need to try to build up the corner for the cove.
The screws get hidden perfectly.
A few coats, and I am ready for epoxy.

This stuff feels like concrete when its cured.
But has some give / flexibility, so it should be good in a moving vehicle.

Then top coat with this stuff

Picked up a can of this stuff and really like it.
No mixing, just paint on.
Pretty much self leveling.



It takes a couple of coats, but it fills all the rough stuff.

It leaves the surface smooth, almost feels like a vinyl floor.
But I will be able to patch it in minutes if it cracks at all.

AND at most it might cost me $150 all in.

I almost choked when my buddy told me how much he paid to have his ( now split and cracking ) floor done.  $1900 !!
But it was done by a  professional.
Granted it gets all done in an afternoon.
And yeah, it was ( supposedly ) commercial vinyl.
But come on. $1900 ???

At MOST his floor INCLUDING the cove up 4 inches is 5 ft by 12 ft.  So 60 sq ft.
So even if you say MAYBE $400 for the vinyl.  Which makes it over $6 a sq ft.
And MAYBE $100 for other materials.
That leave what…. $900 for MAYBE 4 hours labour????
So OVER $200 an hour to lay vinyl floor ???
AND it has to be repaired after ONE season???

Thanks, I’ll try my way …


Oh yeah, and another buddy of mine has some left over 5/8 tongue n groove sub floor from his house reno.
He has enough to do the truck, and I have 14 cases of ceramic tile left over from when I did my bathroom.
Straight trade.  So the sub floor is costing me zero…..   I have had the tile for years.  SCORE[…]

PoCo Inspired

So far…

So I managed to get a hold of the “proposed” “draft” copy of “guideline” that is being developed for food trucks in my city.

While these are not yet enforceable rules, at least it gives me an idea on a few things that I have been questioning.

Mainly, the appliances and their use.

Although the health department says I can pretty much use anything I want.
And we are not “required” to use commercial appliances according to current rules.
I must first get inspected by the Office of the Fire Commissioner.
And THAT is who made up this “guideline”.

The one thing I noticed in this “guideline”,is that it says that all appliances and equipment must be “certified” for their intended use.
So while yes everything is “certified” to be used ins Canada ( CSA or ULC )
I was wanting to use some residential grills.
And I noticed that ALL appliances that are not “commercial” have it stamped on them…
“for household use only” or “intended for household use”

OK yeah sure, I’m on a tight budget, AND yeah, I’m a cheap ass.

But really, where I live, this truck will be used a few hours a day, maybe a little more on weekends, IF I get an event, and only about 5 months out of the year.

We don’t run things like you guys down in the USA in the warmer climates.
Some of you guys even do breakfasts.
But if not, many of you at least do lunch and supper, and weekends.

Many of you do good sized fairs where your equipment is going for 10 or 14 hours a day.

So yes, if you run that many hours, most or all year long, then yes, you want equipment that is built to last.

But for me, that will not be using the equipment even a quarter of that time, why the heck should I have to spend $3000 or $4000 on a grill??

Luckily I have the Coke fridge to use.
And then I found these griddles.

They are just what I need / want.

They are ULC listed. Light duty commercial. Not stamped as “for household use”
Cheap to buy, and easy to replace.

Yeah if it dies in a year, then its a buck and half to replace.
Not a few thousand.

So I think this is the way to go.[…]

PoCo Inspired

Smooth as a baby’s …..

Well not quite, but pretty darn smooth.

The main shot is my perfectly coved mock up floor.
Now with 3 or 4 coats of epoxy paint.
Not smooth like glass, but it doesn’t have to be.

Up close it’s still pretty smooth.


The only thing I didn’t like was the WAY the aluminum FEELS underneath.
It has a kind of hollow feeling to it.

I think because I ONLY screwed it to the boards.

When it goes in the truck, I think I will silicone it first, then screw it down.

That should give it a lot of strength AND a good solid feel.[…]

PoCo Inspired

Happy Dance !!

I stopped in to see my engineer guy today….

Well actually, he called me because he needs help with something and I have some equipment that he needs to borrow, along with my help.

He finally talked to HIS guy (guess it was too much to ask that he let me know WHEN he talked to his guy)….  anyway….

His guy is the one that deals with kitchens and ventilation.  The actual mechanical engineer.

As far as he is concerned, with what I am doing, he says that I will not be producing grease laden vapors. So I should NOT need a commercial hood and fan.
And he us willing to stand behind that decision and sign off on it if it is questioned by any inspector.  WOOHOO!!

I get get to save THOUSANDS of $$  !!


PoCo Inspired

OH Loddy Loddy I can’t take it !!

Can you believe 2 – count em TWO  —  dare I say — positive – things happened in a row.

Maybe we will just them non – set backs. Positive is just to strong a word.

But yeah, first I get the green light from my engineer.
Hell just getting an answer was a – woo hoo, but a green light  !!  MAN o MAN

So I know I don’t need to spend – what was that number…. about $8000 for a hood and fan set up …  plus another $2000 – $4000 for fire suppression.

But I still want a hood / fan.
A decent CFM one.
I still want to suck out smoke, fumes, smells.
And I have this concern about things listed ” for household use only ” being not allowed.

So my usual 3 am searching around for stuff.
I find a hood that I like. It has 700 CFM. It’s CSA approved. ( it’s sold here so it has to be )
And I found the manuals at Home Depot and it says NOTHING in them about house hold use.
I had to read them over and over.
Even downloaded them and ran a search inside the document for all of those words, and NOTHING !!  WOO HOO!!

If it “happens” to say it on the box, I can toss it, I only have to have the manual.
If it “happens” to say it ON the unit, it SHOULD be printed somewhere on the motor or other hidden spot, so it won’t be seen.


I THINK I can now officially start to move in a FORWARD direction.

Of course we just got hit with a foot and half of snow, and -20 cold.

But I got a heater in the truck, and I don’t give a fu….   :)[…]

PoCo Inspired

Yuppers boys n girlz it’s PLYWOOD !!

Yeah woo hoo !  Right?

Sure to you it’s just a piece of plywood.
Actually it’s just a little more than half a piece of plywood.
58 inches to be exact.

But you need to read between the grains, to understand that although it’s just a simple piece of plywood….  It is so much more.
It’s the 2nd half.

The first half is laying on the floor of the food truck.  This was the the piece that I cut to butt up to the first piece that makes up the main walkway in the food truck.
This is the section that will get all of the walking back an forth on.
This section will take the brunt of the abuse.

Yeah? So?  It’s still just TWO pieces of wood…

But to ME, this is the first THING that has been done in the RIGHT direction.
This is the first thing to back IN the truck, instead of being ripped OUT of the truck

EVERYTHING up to this point has been getting junk out of the truck, and waiting and waiting, and looking for answers and waiting for this that and everything else.
Heck I even had to wait a couple of weeks for the plywood, because I made a deal with a buddy on it.

Then I had it in the garage for a few days, but it was Christmas, then my B-day, then New Years, and busy busy busy.

Even once I was ready to start working, I had to wait.

My dad picked up a new table saw, ( that I wanted to use it for cutting the plywood ) for me because he has somehow managed to destroy, not one but TWO of my saws over the last couple of years.

We trade tools back and forth all the time, but he seems to destroy things fairly regularly.
Sanders, Jigsaws, etc.  don’t know how, but he does it.

Anyway, now we are on table saw number THREE.

He got a xmas sale on a nice little Ridgid model.
And it seems like a nice saw.

But what we didn’t realize when he bought it, was that it has NO stand.
He thought it had one of those nifty fold down stands.
It has wheels, and a pull out handle, but that’s it. No stand.

We only realized this once we pulled it out of the box yesterday.
A quick website check revealed that the one with the nifty fold down stand was $150 more.
AND that they don’t even make a stand for this unit.

Well, we have TWO stands from the previous table saws. ( dad never throws out anything )
So I figured I could just morph the two units together.     that was fun….  not

I managed to make it work. ( didn’t even have to pull out the welder )  but it took half the day to make it happen.
It has 4 little cleats on the bottom of the unit for setting on a bench.
Even holes to drive some screws in there and hold it.
I was able to remove those cleats and spin them around backwards so the mounting holes were on the inside.  With that done, they actually sat really nice on the stand.
Just took some trial and error.
Drilled a couple of holes in the stand. Nut n bolts n lock washers, and bob’s yer uncle.

It wasn’t until after spending half the day getting this all done, I realized I am not going to cut a 4 x 8 sheet of plywood on the table saw….. I need it for cutting the smaller stuff.
Which I can’t even do until I find out if I do actually get the sandwich prep table and figure out how big it is and where and how I am putting it in the truck.

So now I’m waiting for THAT.

But at least I pulled out my skill saw and cut my plywood. Forward momentum from here on in……after I wait on the prep table…..   :)[…]

PoCo Inspired

I’m floored !

Well it may not look like much to you….   But me … I’m pretty impressed.
My sub floor is in.

I spent the last few days cutting the plywood to size, and getting it ready to go in.

I wanted to use some fireproofing paint on it. But I can only get it in the USA.

Then last week I am in my local Habitat Re-Store and what do I come across…
This stuff  ….  just what the doctor ordered.
Same kind of stuff I was after.
2 packs per gallon gives it a class A fire rating.

So I put in my primer / sealer and gave the wood a few coats.  Voila …Fire Proof.

Best of all, I got it for $1 per pack.[…]

PoCo Inspired

Windows to my soul??

The windows were interesting.

On normal construction, like a house…. You would build your frames the match your window size and then slide your windows INTO the frames and screw them in.

In the truck, I had already ripped out the old frames, and the windows were still there.
They were held in with some screws, some pop rivets, even some brad nails.

I wanted to avoid wood and was going to use metal studs.
But I couldn’t find any that the proper size.
They needed to be ACTUAL 2 inches. A FULL 2 inches.
But all the metal studs are built just like the 2×4’s.
They may be called 2×4’s, but they are actually PHYSICALLY 1.5 inches by 3.5 inches.
And so are the metal studs.

So I had a bunch of pressure treated lumber lying around.
I ripped it down to the proper size and gave it a couple of coats of my fireproof paint.
Plus it’s going to be sheeted over with cement board, then aluminum panels.



Under service window PoCo Inspired


I even got some of the electrical started.

Stupid me, I put up the cement boards, THEN realized I need to have the outlets right THERE.

So pull it all off then mount outlets… duh



Service window PoCo Inspired

NOW some walls go up

Now that I some outlets in, and some wire strung I finally got the lower portion of the walls and insulation up.

The thing I am wondering now is …. should I have a vapor barrier up?

I read a bunch, but can’t find a real answer.

I want to make sure that no water comes in through the seams of the back door.
So I tried to fill all the gaps with sealing foam, then that super sticky red tape.
Then I put vapor barrier over the entire back wall.

There were a lot of holes in that back wall.

Those strips you see are cement board.  The center section (doorway) needed to be built up a half inch, otherwise the back wall would have been bowed in the center.
And I did not want to use wood.



PoCo Inspired


Had the old propane equipment supposedly sold weeks ago.
Been waiting and waiting and waiting for the guy to come and pick it up.

This happened, that happened, something broke, someone died, got snowed in.
But its done, the stuff if gone…. finally.

It’s not like I got a ton of money for the stuff, but more that I got a whole ton of room in shed now !  WOO HOO!



PoCo Inspired

I’m a big fan

So after all this time, trying to avoid the whole commercial fan and hood thing…
There I am browsing Kijiji for a totally different reason than anything food truck related…

And what do I come across, but a Captive Aire hood and  3000 CFM COOK upblast fan.
And at a good price.

I HAD to email the guy.  …. A little back and forth, and I went for a drive.

Got him down from $1000 to $600 AND he threw in what appears to be MOST of a fire suppression system.

How could I say no?

It’s only a couple hundred more than I would have spent on a basic old residential fan.

And now I’m fully covered on the off chance that some inspector has an issue with the way I was gonna do it.

And its WAAAYYY better than the 5 grand I would have to spend on a new hood and fan.
Not to mention the few grand more for the fire suppression stuff.

So the cash I got for selling the equipment the other day…. plus I got my cash back cheque from my Costco card, and I got my hood and fan and still a couple hundred bucks ahead.

All in all, a good day.[…]

PoCo Inspired

Ya stupid Ansul

So this is just too funny.
Not more than 2 days before, when I sold off my propane equipment that I wasn’t going to need….  I let go with it as part of the deal, The Ansul box that I had.
Why not, I wasn’t going to need the fire suppression anyway.  And it was just the empty box. Nothing inside but the switch.
I would have to still buy the other stuff to in it, if I were to use it.

So now I pick up this fan and hood, and the guy throws in the same darn Ansul box I just got rid of.
When I pop the box open,  this one has the canister AND the Co2 cartridge in it.
I even have the plumbing in the hood to go with it.

Heck, way back when I was talking to the guy about the fire suppression stuff months ago…. It was going to cost me in the $300 – $500 range just for these containers, PLUS I would still have to have them charged up with the Ansul liquid and Co2.

So definitely a good deal overall.
I will hang on to them for now.
Who knows, maybe I can sell them for a few bucks.
I will have to check with the fire suppression guy to see I he knows if anyone is in the market.


PoCo Inspired

Whats under da hood

Got the hood into the garage.

WOWzers it’s huge.
48 wide, 23 high, and 40 deep.
And it’s not the kind that’s meant for a truck. It’s just a big square box.

But I didn’t pay much for it. And I think I can modify it.
Here is a shot of what it is, what I plan to do, and kinda what I am hoping it will turn out like.


Cutting it will be easy.
I have those nice new metal shears, or my die grinder with cut off wheels.

It might be a little tricky, because it looks like the sidewalls are double layers.

I figure that I can just trim the edges with something like this..


That way I don’t have to weld them.

The fun part is going to be doing the front lip.
I want it to only be about 2 inches.
And It will have to be at least tack welded pretty good.

I have been do some reading, and found out it can use my mig welder, and stainless wire.
And I should probably get the proper gas.
So far my experiments on scrap have been fairly successful, even just using the gas I have.
I’m going to practice a lot more before I actually do it.

Lucky for me, I don’t NEED this fan and hood.
Because I’m going electric, and no deep frying or grease vapors, I don’t have to have it.

Here, it’s not the health department that requires the hood and fan, it’s the fire commissioner.
And it is split up between the electrical inspector to inspect the electrical,
and the gas inspector, who takes care of the gas and ventilation.

And I won’t be getting a gas inspection.

At least that is the way I understand the system so far.
HOPEFULLY nobody looks at the hood too close.[…]

PoCo Inspired

In da Hood

Again… seems like forever since I updated here.
FINALLY got back to the hood.
Or more correctly, got started on it.

I took the original hood that was a big 3 x 4 box unit


And split it in half to fit the truck.

Cut out a trim piece for the front.



And tacked it to the front of the hood.


So far so good.

The thing was double wall heavy SS.
A real bear to cut through.

I bent up some thinner gauge SS to make trim pieces for the sides, and welded those in.

They cleaned up pretty good with the flap wheel.
They look as good as the originals.

I,m just not sure if I am supposed to weld the ENTIRE length of the trip piece.
The originals were just folded over.
The ones I see online are just folded over.

Still need to figure out mounting tabs, and few details, then a light polish.


Here is a shot of the side trim strips that I added.
I especially liked how nice the welds smoothed out.
You can see how nice it blended on the top right corner.


PoCo Inspired

Snap Crackle POP

So today …

Guess it ended up the usual cluster ……

Been working at the store all dang week.
Then had to spend ALL day Friday helping the wife set up for a trade show….  On the opposite end of town of course.

Seems that I work for my wife WAY to much.  :)

Anyway, I finally got back to doing some work on the the truck today.

Went out to my brother’s place to see if the truck would fit in his garage.
Lo and behold. It fits!!
Had to mostly flatten the tires, but I got it to fit.
He says I can use it to paint the truck.
Sooo…  woohoo!!

Got home later and got to do some welding.
It was even going pretty well…
Finally seem to have figured out some stuff.

Then suddenly  ….  

Not really the kind of sound you want to hear from a welder….

Then a poof of smoke from inside it.

Good thing it’s under warranty.

But I have not finished welding yet.


PoCo Inspired

The window

I was able to pick up this window at the Habitat Re- Store.
Nice price, and close to the size I wanted.

When I compare pictures, you can hardly tell that I did anything.
Which I guess is good.


But trust me…. It has been a lot of work.

The original window was 36 x 60.
The new one is 44 x 60.
The glass was replaced with 1/4 in Optrix Acrylic plexi.


Here is a shot of the nearly finished inner window with the screen kit.


PoCo Inspired

The window – details

This is probably really crazy…..but….
After getting a price of around $2500 plus taxes (13%) for a serving window to get it done locally…. I decided to go a DIY route.

Even trying to get something out of the USA was going to end up close to the 2 grand range after exchange and shipping, and then I still had to pay taxes across the boarder.

I have never done anything like this, I have never welded aluminum…
I really had no clue what I was doing or how it was going to go.
But why should that stop me right?

I was able to get a single pane aluminum slider window at the local Re-Store.
Actually got 3 of them – all matching…. for about $45.

The glass is useless, because it breaks when you look at it.
So it will be replaced with plexi glass. Optix brand. – ended up about $130.

The window was already 3 ft high, and 5 ft wide.
I took some sage advice, and decided to make it as big as possible…
This is where the crazy comes in.

The plexi is 44 inches high. So instead of cutting the plexi to fit the frame…
Let’s re-engineer the frame to fit the plexi.

Take the original window frame, cut it, splice in a section from the 2nd window frame, weld it back together and smooth it all out so it looks close to factory.
No problem.

Here is a shot of the first cut and test fit.


Now welded together and smoothed out.


The welding went really well, only took a few tries to get the feel for welding aluminum.
Besides, aluminum fills the mistakes really good and once its cleaned up, you cant tell.



The hardest part was the waiting….
My welder is not set up for aluminum, so I had to go to a buddy’s place.
5 minutes to do the weld.  But I could only do it once a week.  So when I made a mistake or had to change something…..or welded the wrong side – DUH..  I had to wait a week before I could fix it.
All in all, it was probably only an hour of two of work.

That was the INNER frame that will house the sliding window and screen.


On to the OUTER frame.
This will house the flip up canopy.
So same deal… it needs to go from 36 inches tall to 44 inches tall.
With the added bonus of removing the grooves ( extrusions? ) that the windows sat in.

So this is the side view of the frame before.


I first ran it through the table saw to take off that extrusion.

Then smoothed it with a grinder and flapp disc.
Then cut, weld, and clean up.
This is a shot of the welded seam.

And a shot of the outer frame, test fit together.


I DID try to paint the frame and keep it white, but it really sucked.
So I spent a couple hours with the wire wheel, and took off all the paint.



Did the same to the inner frame.  No more paint.



The plexi was its own kind of challenge.
Even though I went with 1/4 inch thick stuff, it was still pretty bendy.
I siliconed some 3/8 extruded channel to both ends.

That worked well.
The wrinkled stuff is just the shipping saran wrap.

I was able to re-use some of the original aluminum sections from the original glass.
The parts that had the little fuzzy strips on them.
So that when the window slides back and forth, it doesn’t scratch.
A little more silicone and a couple of days to dry.


I siliconed the window to one side of the frame so it did not move.
I only need one side to slide open.
I got one of those DIY screens from home depot.
The quality is pretty crappy, but it will work for now.


This is the unit all assembled.


I added a piano hinge to the outer frame to hold the canopy.


Started to construct the canopy.
3/8 plywood.
Sliliconed some aluminum sheet to one side. and clamped and weighted those whole thing to cure for a couple of days.


PoCo Inspired

Beam me UP

Working on the window.

For better or worse, I’m doing a custom window, made to fit the truck.
As opposed to ordering a standard size and cutting the opening to fit the window.

So here is how it is going so far.

Because it was -25 outside when I started this.
I just measured where I wanted the window.
Then built the window in the garage.

Thought I had it all covered.
Measured down to and 1/8 th of an inch.

Built a mock up frame in the garage to test fit stuff. ( which actually worked pretty well )


Then I cut the opening for the window.

Just before the last cut…..


My goal was to preserve as much of the structural beams as possible.

Here is the nice big opening…


But I forgot to account for LIP that was part of the beam.


I guess I could have cut the lip off.
But that is where the rivets are.
Without the lip, the beams are kinda useless.

I guess this is where I am lucky that I am making the window from scratch – ish.

I trimmed the window frame to match the opening.
The frame even had these large flanges for mounting that had to be trimmed back about 3/8 of an inch. About where the holes are, because they would not allow the frame to sit against the lip/beam.

Also had to trim the frame width about 3/8 of an inch.
That part was easy.

But it means I have to trim the canopy to match.
3/8 plywood, sandwiched between 2 layers of aluminum.
HOPEFULLY it goes well.
Just waiting for the garage to warm up because it went down below zero again last night.

Good thing I had not yet glued the trim on.

My other concern is the overall weight of the canopy.
I mean… it’s not 50 lbs. But it does fell kinda heavy.
I am concerned that the gas shock might not hold it….
If I can figure out how to mount them.[…]

PoCo Inspired

More window

I trimmed the canopy about 3/4 inch in width.
Trimmed the the aluminum channel trim to match.
Test fit in my mock frame.
So far so good.
But the weight thing was still buggin me.

Dug out a scale.  Found some fresh batteries…. did a weigh in. 45 pounds.
I dunno, maybe I’m just a little paranoid…  But that seems like a lot.

I have these visions… 4 x 5 sheet of plywood@ 45 lbs….  strut lets go…. screw breaks….  this thing comes swingin down from 10 feet up…. clocks some big mofo in the back of the noggin….

More weight on all the parts is more stress.

I still want to keep the structure of the canopy so it’s not a flimsy P.O.S.

So I carve out the center with the skill saw.  Leaving a good amount of wood for structure.

Now it’s down to 20 pounds.  Still pretty solid.

Next, I test it all on the mock frame, and it feels WAY better.
WAY less stress on the screw and hinges.


Next I inlay some pink insulation.
Laminate both sides with aluminum sheet again, and bobs yer uncle.

Now the stupid thing is probably too light for the struts!!

I even managed to get the outer frame mounted on the truck.

Once all the glues and silicone dries I should be able to mount the canopy. Tomorrow.[…]

PoCo Inspired


Installing the struts was WAY harder than it should have been.
Of course, never done this before. No instructions. No clue.
Where to mount?
Pivot point? Pressure point?
Weight to height ratio?
Drag coefficient?

All trial and error.

Got it figured out in the end.

You would think ( at least I did ) that the strut would have to be mounted further out on the canopy for stability.
But it does not work that way.
I did it similar to this:

Close the canopy, figure out where the frame side mount will be with the strut compressed.

I added an inch, to be safe.

Then prop the canopy open and figure out where the canopy side mount will be with the strut fully extended.

Not sure why, but most places seem to suggest mounting the struts in this position.
With the fat end on the door side.
Maybe so water can’t run down into the cylinder when it rains?? Not sure.


My struts were the ones with ends like these that just pop over the ball mount.

While they just POP on, they do NOT pop OFF.
They BREAK off pretty quickly though.
Found that out pretty quick.
There is a little spring tab that you have to remove first. DUH!

Also the 80 pound struts were WAY to strong. It actually made it hard to close.
It looked like that would eventually cause damage somewhere.
I don’t know the math ….
But I have a canopy the weighs 40 pounds.
And I am using 57 pound struts.
It’s stable. Not hard to close. And opens smoothly without POPPING up.

I was able to buy theses mounting brackets, which worked great on the canopy side.


But once I figured out the frame side, I needed the opposite kind of brackets.
And spent the day driving around trying to locate some.
Guess how THAT turned out….


Ended up having to make my own.
Tried some lighter stuff…. no WAY!
They flexed when I closed the canopy.

Had 2 x 2 1/4 inch angle.
Cut down the width to about 1 1/4 inch.
Smoothed the corners and welded on the studs that came with the struts.


The big problem was that it HAD to be mounted to the window frame, which was thin and flimsy to begin with, plus it had no structure behind it to carry the weight load.

Here is a shot of the solution from the inside.

On both sides of the window, I was able to MacGuyver a chunk of 3/4 inch C channel between the window frame and the factory stud.
I tried with a piece of square channel, It would not budge.
Then I cut little pieces of 1/2 inch C channel down to insert into the larger piece to form a box ( support piece ).
Then I drilled through from the window frame into the factory stud, and used screws long enough to hit the studs.
Now it’s solid.


PoCo Inspired

Inner winder

Great weather today.
Actually got the inner window installed.

It went easier than I expected.
But not without its challenges.

The first thing I got installed was the outer lock/handle.

I went with a simple t handle and matching slide mech.
They were on clearance at Home Depot.


The challenge with the inner window was spacing.
I did not take into account the extra space required for things like the lock mech or the gas struts.

To compensate for this, I added 1/2 by 1/2 aluminum C channel on the inside of the outer frame.
This gave me that extra 1/2 inch of space.


It was not too hard to do, but not fun.

End result though, the window is installed.



What I can’t figure out is this…

I had to cut 3/4 inch off the outer frame to make it fit between the factory beams in the truck.
I then had the trim the same amount from the canopy to make it fit the frame properly.
But I did NOT touch the inner window frame at all.
Yet it fits perfectly to the outer frame.

And I mean fit PERFECTLY.
But I built both windows at the same time, and made them to match. weird.[…]

PoCo Inspired

Inside scoop

Finally started some work on the inside.

Did some much needed rewiring.

Then moved onto some walls.

The front walls, behind the cab.
I was going to just sheet over them, but once I saw how very little of the walls were going to be exposed, I figured it would be better to just clean them.

There were so many stickers and left over ….mmm…. pictures….  taped to walls.
Pictures of…uuhhmm ….  Laura Croft….   hockey teams  …  women’s curling teams  ……
( seriously ? )
Hey, it came with the truck . ….
TONS of old scotch tape, packing tape….. 2 way tape… spray paint…marker
It’s actually ALL over the truck. Even on the sliding door. Luckily, the other walls are getting covered.
But it was SO hard to get off.

I probably would have been better off just gluing a skin of aluminum sheet over it.
But I was determined to get it clean and just used the raw walls.

Cleaned it with everything possible.
Then sanded it all with 280 grit an orbital sander.

Did a polish with a buffing wheel in a test spot….
Came out really nice ….  too nice.
Actually got a mirror finish in the small test area.
But it made everything ELSE look really dull.

Switched to a scotch brite pad.
It gave it a nice smooth clean finish.
A dull shine.

I liked it.


PoCo Inspired


Once the walls were buffed, I found something else to play with.

In the back of the truck, there were aluminum covers over the tail lights. On the inside.
I guess they were there to protect the lights from shifting cargo.
But for me, they were just in the way.

Once removed, I figured I could re-purpose them as shelves.

Well….. after a little cleaning…

And decreasing, and sanding and buffing.

But over all please with the outcome.


That would be the nicely buffed walls and door.

You might notice that the lower portion of the walls is not buffed all shiny.

It’s all going to be covered with equipment, so I figured a good cleaning was all that was needed.

Right side will be the sink, left side will be that big stainless table I got.[…]

PoCo Inspired

In the pink

Didn’t get much done on the truck in the last week.
Was pretty busy with other stuff.

Got the garage cleaned up a bit.
Got a bunch of stuff moved around.

Yesterday I cleaned out the truck.  Power washed the inside.
Today I got the floor insulation glued down.

Why do these things always take so much longer than you think they will??


PoCo Inspired

Inside job

Finally ran my air vent for the front grey tank.

It runs up inside the body, and exits near the roof.

I used some pex tubing and unions that were salvaged from the previous truck.

As it exits out the top, I used a 90 degree union.

Cut a hole in the wall, ran the threaded part outside, and cut some screen to go over the hole, and put on the fitting.

Bead of silicone, and we were done.[…]

PoCo Inspired


Took forever to figure out where to put the fresh tank filler.
Kinda all depended on the final placement and set up of the fresh tank.

Musta have struggled with this one a dozen times.
Not entirely happy with where is it going, but I can live with it.

It ends up just to the right of the service window.
Had to turn it sideways to fit between the factory support beams.

here is the inside view.

The fresh tank is getting mounted just below the serving window.
It will be enclosed in a box.[…]

PoCo Inspired

I need support

Built the platform that the big ass stainless table I got will go on to of.

Yeah, I thought about just doing legs, but them I gotta try to clean under there.
Its not like the space would get used for anything.

My floors have to be coved up a minimum 4 inches.
This platform is 5.5 inches.
So my flooring will just go up the platform.

I structured a channel into the platform for my 8 x 8 intake vent.

This will give me a fresh air intake that should end up about 8 inches of the floor in front of the cooking area, and just about directly below the hood and fan.

I will just fill the rest of the empty cavities with insulation.


I hate the thought of using any wood.
Especially after gutting nearly 1000 pounds of wood out of the first truck.

But some times you just need the structure to be able to secure other stuff that will be going in.

Anywhere that there is any wood, it gets coated with fire resistant paint.
And even the paint is recycled.  I got it from a buddy who was tossing it because he had a bunch left over after a reno.
Just mix in the handy dandy fire resistant coating ( that was bought at the habitat re-store ) … and bob’s ye uncle.

I used no nails, but decided to drive in screws from the out side as well.

I used the ones that are used for doing metal roofs.
They are color matched, grab in the wood really nice, and are self sealing with the rubber grommet.

And in keeping with my theme of recycling / up-cycling as much as possible….

All of the wood on the walls, and in the platform, used to be my brothers front porch.

I’m sure I have just saved a baby whale or a penguin or something.


I finally decided that YES I am going to put some extra support beams for the hood.

I had some 1 x 1 square tubing left over from a previous project.
Good thing I measured 3 or 4 times to be safe.
7 feet and 1/2 an inch.

Cut some angle iron to make mounting tabs.  ( recycled bed frame )
And yes I know the holes are not centered.
I wanted them to be …not as close to the ceiling.

Welded it all together, cleaned up the ends, and painted it with some galvanizing paint.

Came out looking not too bad.

These will span the ceiling width wise.

There is a nice chunky aluminum channel that runs the full length of the truck.

I plan to drill corresponding holes, then use threaded rivet inserts.

This way they can be attached with bolts and a lock washer.
This also makes them removable for any future changes.

Now that I have this tool, I plan to mount a bunch of the stuff this way.
Instead of just using regular big rivets.
Which are just hell to try to remove.[…]

PoCo Inspired

Beam me up

Set up the support beams for the hood today.

Here is a shot of the factory beams that run the length of the truck on both sides.

They are about 1.25 x 1.25 square aluminum.
They are not really square, but they seem like it.
Hollow on the inside.

I thought about just driving self tapping screws into it to hold the new support beams.
But I figured that being aluminum, the may eventually strip or come loose.

Drilled pilot holes.

The put in the threaded inserts.


It went better than expected.

A test fit and all was good.

This shot shows the beam spanned across the width of the truck.

The second one went just as easy.

Even the paint is a pretty close match.[…]

PoCo Inspired

Cove… Curve… C’mon

One of the things that I have found to be a huge difference between where I live and how things are done in the USA is the flooring.

Where I am, the requirement is to have flooring that is as close to 1 single piece as possible, and COVED up the wall a minimum of 4 inches.

I have heard a lot of stories of people bringing in trucks from other provinces or from the USA, and they won’t pass inspection because the floors are done wrong.
They then have to rip out EVERYTHING and do the floors to meet out code.

This is not acceptable:

This is not acceptable:

This IS acceptable, but it better be perfect.

They don’t really seem to like the diamond plate here.
They want to see the corners CURVED ( coved ) and every seam must be welded.
And smoothed.

So even this might not pass because that seam is not smoothed.


What seems to get done around here is that they use rolled vinyl flooring.
It can be fairly easily coved up the walls.
And fairly easily glued together at the seams.

But every one I have seen is the same.
Nobody puts anything BEHIND the cove.
It’s just hollow.

Also, nobody seems to know how to overlap the corners, inside or outside.
They just match them up and glue them together.

That works well in a house, but in a moving vehicle.

They usually make it through the 1st season, but by the 2nd, the seams are splitting, the coves are pushed through.

And they charge on average 2 grand for this crap!

Well we won’t know if what I’m doing is better or not until it’s been around for a while…
But here goes.

MY coves are galvanized steel.
They are the rounded corner beads for doing drywall.


The metal is strong, yet flexible.

I peeled off the paper backing.

I put adhesive on the backside.
Then stapled it to my floor.


I was kind of worried that the SMOOTHNESS of the metal would not take to the coating very well.
So I sprayed it with some primer I had lying around.
Where the heck I got green primer I don’t know.
But I still thought it was a little too smooth.

I found a can of spray on adhesive in the shop.


It went on sort of half mist spray and half spider web –  webby — ??

The texture was good to help the next coating stick.

I even went up the walls to the coating had something to grab onto.

So far I have put down 2 coats of this stuff.


Will it work?
Only time will tell.

I can only say that we used it in our store, on stairs, over top of laminate flooring, and in 2 years, it only needed an occasional touch up.
In my books, that’s pretty good.

Plus I got it on clearance on one of my recent trips.
Got 2 of the big 4 or 5 gallon pails for just under $40.  woo hoo!

Once it dries and cures, I will top it with epoxy.

I got this kit.

Hopefully the combination of the 2 coatings will be durable enough.

My contact at the HD loved the sample when I showed him.[…]

PoCo Inspired

Final coat

Put on the last coating of the Restore product.

Now its going to take a couple of days to dry.


The texture is similar to fiberglass resin.

The goal here is that the Restore product is what bonds to the wood surface of the floor.

And with the rough sandy finish, the epoxy will bond well to that.


I didn’t bother to get it tinted, so it is fairly translucent.[…]

No thumbnail available PoCo Inspired


Finally finished the floor off.

Capped and sealed all the corners ( as per our HD requirements ) .
Problem is, they don’t tell you what they want it capped and sealed with.

Should I use plastic? wood? leather??
How big?
Sealed with what?
They won’t say.

Kinda hard to see it in the photo.
The main area got 2×2 inch galvanized metal.
While the non critical areas got 1/2 by 1/2 inch galvanized metal.
All siliconed in place.
Then the edges got siliconed as well,so they are sealed.

While it was safe to walk on after a day or so, it says to fully cure it needs a week.[…]