Replacing Refrig Panels

Oct. 22, 2016.  We were not thrilled with the black plexiglass, sticker laden refrig panels that the previous owner had. Granted we were impressed with how much and far they had traveled ND, FL, CA, ME but it just seemed so “in your face” and not us.

Do we had one 2’x2′ repro vinyl “tin” ceiling tile in the “Cracked Copper” finish that we wanted to try in place of the black plexiglass panels. We had this one panel already because we had bought a few different ones to try in our old Class A RV as a protective backsplash in our kitchen/stove area

It had always worked well, was super easy to clean and yes easy to cut to size with household scissors!  So we cut one to size to see how it would look on the top panel. And LOVED it!

After running to HD and Lowes however we found that the company does not sell their ceiling tile size at these stores any more. They only sell what is sized to actually fit as kitchen backsplash, which is too small for our 8 cubic foot Domestic refrig which is about 6 yrs old. So on to trusty to search. Found them easily and at the same price we paid per panel 6 yrs ago. Amazon prime free shipping and we had them in three days.
Another  project check box completed and we love the look.  And because these are actually vinyl they don’t dent, scratch or rust. they wash with soapy rag and are easy to switch out. If you like the silver tin look they have those too! The Cracked Copper finish compliments our wood cabinetry and the refrig really melds in much better than standing out as a black box.  Happy us!


Oct. 15, 2015.  We decided before prepping her for winter storage the Pewter Palace would get her first bath by us. Scouring the various online forums and FB Avion lovers sites (I now belong to two private FB groups and one yahoo group)  we decided to proceed with the recommendation to use Simple Green Pro HD cleaner. It’s the PURPLE stuff. Then you dilute it per instructions. It did a very good job!

Check out this before….and after

Getting up high enough to wash and check the roof is not easy. It is suggested when you work on the roof of an Avion (or similarly an Airstream) that you use a sheet to plywood to kneel on so you can diffuse your weight and leave no footprints. I am actually going to purchase a very nice scaffold set up from HD for a Xmas gift for Kevin…ha, ha.  It will enable him to be high enough that with his nice ladder with platform he will be able to reach and get to nearly everything on the roof.  But…that is not till next spring now.

Here Kev is washing and when she is wet she is gorgeous! We plan to get her polished and waxed in spring. Avion’s are not a mirror finish like Airstreams (which is nice) but the anodized aluminum is much stronger, durable and when given that “wet look”coating she is fabulous!


Welcome to my blog about our journey of purchasing a vintage 1973 Avion all aluminum coach travel trailer in September 2016.

I am not quite sure I love the fact that something that was made at the same time I was a sophomore in High School is now considered “vintage”. But we can chalk it up to birds of a feather folk together. In any case I love the quality of the woodwork (no vinyl contact paper wood grain cabinets and 1/4″ chip board or worse) with real wood, dovetailed drawers, full piano hinges on doors and a frame that is built like a Sherman tank. (Pun)


We had been shopping around for about 7 months for the coach we wanted to call our own. On one trip to see a pretty sad, run down 73 Travelcade model we came up with what our name for the one we hoped to eventually purchase would be. For those who do not know me I have a passion for 18th Century American history and in this have been collecting reproduction (all I can afford) pewter dishware and serving pieces for over 20 years. Admittedly I have way too much but when I operated a B & B in a period farmhouse in CT in the early 2000’s it came in handy and did catered dinners and colonial cooking demonstrations for 10-15 people.


Anyway, the sheen and color of the anodized aluminum of the Avions reminded my husband Kevin and I of my pewter…and well calling a living space that is less than 30 feet long a “palace” is just tongue and cheek fun!  So we had our name for her….now we just had to FIND her!  Needless to say the Travelcade was far more a project then we wanted. So the search of Craigslists from all over the USA, a tracking of and even “looking for” postings on our personal FB pages finally paid off. We found our coach in the VT Craigslist on a Thursday morning, got out of work that day-drove 2.5 hours into the dark to see her.  Used car headlights and flashlights to scope the exterior. Thankfully the owner could plug the power cord into his adjacent garage so an interior inspection was much easier. We loved her! She was in really nice shape save a few tweaks and had been consistently used which is far better than those left abandoned in fields and backyards.  The owner accepted our offer and deposit and we drove back home another 2.5 hours that same night. This return home trip was filled with excited chatter and seemed to fly.  To top it off, the owner even volunteered to deliver her to our door!

Adventures with a Vintage Avion Luxury Coach Camper