1964 Traveller woodie 'california style' conversion

Finishing, Windows, Hoods & Trav wood etc
Post Reply
User avatar
George Jeffreys
New Poster
United Kingdom
Posts: 4
Joined: 5 days ago

1964 Traveller woodie 'california style' conversion

Post by George Jeffreys »

Hi everyone,

I've just bought a 64 Traveller in good but not perfect condition that I'm going to restore. I'm looking at doing a 'woodie' conversion, so the rear infill panels (aluminium) and the panels in the door would be replaced with wood so the whole back end looks wooden. I'm new to travellers so I'm going to need some help with this.

1) If anyone's ever done a woodie conversion, do you remove the aluminium infill panels and replace them with wood or just cover the aluminium panels with wood?

2) The aluminium panels have a slight curve in them as they lift at the bottom a bit to meet the wheel arch. How do you replicate this with a wooden panel?

3) If you remove the aluminium panels... how do you get to them? I'm assuming roof off then the whole rear end off, but I'm not sure how the panels are fixed to the wooden frame? Are they clamped between two parts of the wooden frame, glued in, screwed in? Are they welded to the main body at all?

Any instructions/advice on how I might achieve this would be much appreciated. Thanks in advance

George



User avatar
Plin
.
United Kingdom
Posts: 3359
Joined: 11 years ago
Location: North Hertfordshire

Contribution Stars

MMO Annual Award

Misc

Re: 1964 Traveller woodie 'california style' conversion

Post by Plin »

Sorry George I haven't a clue about your queries! I know I have seen conversions of the aluminium panels to wood but not aware how it is done! Just wanted to say :D Welcome to the forum!



User avatar
Custard
.
Ireland
Posts: 2906
Joined: 9 years ago
Location: Blackpool

Contribution Stars

The Cliff Lloyd Award

Re: 1964 Traveller woodie 'california style' conversion

Post by Custard »

Hi and welcome.

If you only want to alter 6 panels, the lower two each side and the rear doors they all screw off.

The sides are on the same as the rear doors lots of small screws and sealant/mastic.

You just have to deal with aging glue or anything else a previous owner may have used if the trim has been off before.

Its a long while since I had a traveller, but I think I unscrewed the interior waist rails as they covered the tops of the trim, and removed the rear seat and boot floor for better access too.

After that its just a lot of small screws then careful use of a paint scraper or similar to break the seal as it is like old black mastic. Hopefully they have not been off before and replaced used modern adhesives otherwise it will be more of a stanley knife job and care is needed not to damage the structural wood.

Its time consuming and helps if you have a second person who can push the panels in from the outside. If you only use the scraper from the inside you can make sure any marks are only on the non visible wood.

I actually did this to paint the panels and drove the car for two days in summer with no panels in. So it is possible to remove the panels without damaging them. You do have to replace the neck of the fuel filler for safety as soon as that panel is off even if you are not driving it.

They are only thin aluminium the same as the back door and thin plywood would bend the same way. If you were planking it with an other type of wood If it was thin enough then it would conform, but I freely admit to not being an expert on wood.

I am still learning through doing a camper conversion and that's inside so once you have the panels off and you can see what you are dealing with you really need advice from someone else.

One massive warning if you are new to travellers. You can find things you don't want to see once you start dismantling and things can spiral to a complete rear end off.

Sean.



User avatar
Panky
.
United Kingdom
Posts: 1564
Joined: 6 years ago
Location: Cheshire
Contact:

Contribution Stars

Re: 1964 Traveller woodie 'california style' conversion

Post by Panky »

"One massive warning if you are new to travellers. You can find things you don't want to see once you start dismantling and things can spiral to a complete rear end off."
Tell me about it :?

Hi George and welcome along. Sean's advice is spot on and the only extra bit of advice I have is to maybe use a bit if steam to shape the curve at the bottom of the forward panels. I've just stripped the panels from the sides of my traveller (they are off the car though) and found them to be attached with screws, flat head nails and dumdum - although they do look like they've been off before judging by all the extra holes :roll:


Image

Ted the 1971 Bermuda Blue Traveller
'91 Mini Cooper
1971 Commer Auto-Sleeper
!969 Commer Jennings Roadranger

User avatar
Custard
.
Ireland
Posts: 2906
Joined: 9 years ago
Location: Blackpool

Contribution Stars

The Cliff Lloyd Award

Re: 1964 Traveller woodie 'california style' conversion

Post by Custard »

Yours is going pretty well.

Though if your weather is like ours up here it looks like the painting season is over.

I was going to point him to your thread if he ends up doing anything with the roof.

I don't think there are too many pictures about showing how the traveller roof is attached so your gutter repair could be invaluable.

Sean.



User avatar
George Jeffreys
New Poster
United Kingdom
Posts: 4
Joined: 5 days ago

Re: 1964 Traveller woodie 'california style' conversion

Post by George Jeffreys »

Thanks everyone - this is all really helpful.

My other idea was to do a wood veneer over the aluminium panels and not remove them at all. Any thoughts on how this might work?

George



User avatar
Custard
.
Ireland
Posts: 2906
Joined: 9 years ago
Location: Blackpool

Contribution Stars

The Cliff Lloyd Award

Re: 1964 Traveller woodie 'california style' conversion

Post by Custard »

I saw one with the old sticky back plastic and it wasn't good.

I certainly couldn't do it that way as it would involve very accurate wood cutting to get it a tight fit and it would have to be well sealed at the edges to stop it retaining damp and damaging the structural wood quicker than the current set up.

As I see it the big advantage of panelling from the back is that there is an overlap for sealer and the cutting doesn't have to be that accurate. and its unseen when the interior trim is replaced.

Also for this country its a big advantage that the end grain or edges of plywood are then inside the vehicle and not exposed to rain and damp.

I think it is the same with all body work that the finish will reflect the effort put in, but anyone who doesn't know how the car is constructed will never realise the effort it takes to produce a very good result that lasts a long time.

Even with a veneer I think the best way would be to test a piece bonding it to Aluminium and if it sticks ok, still remove the aluminium panels bond the veneer and refit.

If the budget will stand sheets of new aluminium take the existing ones off draw round and make new ones retaining the existing ones in case you wish to revert back.

Different people will always do it different ways depending on where their skills lie. I just know I couldn't do it from the outside as I couldn't cut it accurate enough and you cant use beading like a window because of the curves. A boat builder probably could by steaming the wood etc. I would still mess up the mitres in the corner of the beading.

Ultimately it depends on what skills you have or have access to that determines the method you are most comfortable with.

Sean.



Post Reply