About our Luna

Avion travel trailers were built from 1955 to 2002.  Ours is a 1979, 34V, built on a 2” x 6” steel frame, with bumper hitch. The body is built of an interior aluminum skin, coated in vinyl to look like canvas wallpaper, riveted to an aluminum frame.  The lower exterior walls are storage compartments all around the coach, and a rear trunk holds the spare tire, freshwater hoses and access to the bathroom plumbing.  The outside of the frame is covered in anodized aluminum. The cavities between the skins are filled with spray foam insulation. The belly pan is enclosed and the floor is a layer of rigid foam sandwiched between two layers of plywood for insulation. We rebuilt the roof of the coach. Stripping a white latex coating, repairing and resealing all the seams, rivets, and joints, and adding all-new utilities to the roof.  Bath vent, both cabin roof vents, the A/C and all the vent covers were replaced. Over 415 rivets were replaced on the roof alone. Five 200-watt solar panels are installed at the back of the roof coach. The windows are jalousie style and provide a lot of ventilation, even in the rain. All the awnings are ZipDee. The 22’ main awning is brand new, and all the other awnings have new fabric. We went with a really bright and cheery yellow awning, and certainly don’t regret the choice.

All the interior utilities have been replaced. Water is heated by a PrecisionTemp on-demand hot water heater. The LP furnace is the Suburban, 32K BTU. The fridge is a NorKool from Canada, 12V over 110V. It operates on 12 volts, drawing only 4.3 amps. A tinywoodstove.com wood burning stove is located just inside the door. It works like a charm. 

The countertops in the kitchen area are made from cherry wood harvested and milled at our house. About 80% of the cabinetry is original, and has been painted. One of my favorite parts is that the drawers are nice dovetail joint boxes and on ball bearing glides. We sleep in the front of the coach, on the first king-size bed we’ve had as a married couple. The bed doubles as a lounge during waking hours. All the sinks, tub and toilet have been replaced. We use a Natures Head composting toilet in the bathroom. The liquid waste part of the toilet is plumbed into the black tank or can be collected in the factory pail. We operate off the freshwater tank most of the time, rarely hooking up to city water. All supply lines have been replaced with PEX. A carbon block water filter is located under the kitchen sink for drinking and cooking. A 55-gallon freshwater tank is located over the axles, the 30-gallon grey water tank is fore, and the 30-gallon black water tank aft.  The freshwater and city water inlet has been upgraded and an outdoor shower was added to the curbside, rear. The back access door also gave us a sweet spot to bathe our pal, Indie.

Five 100AH lithium Battleborn batteries are located below the rear twin bed, along with the Victron solar charge controller and 3000-watt Multi-plus inverter. The electrical system is 30 amp. We installed a Progressive Systems EMS and an exterior weather boot for the shore cable.

The coach sets fairly low, and the overall height is only 10’. Two 40 pound LP bottles are mounted on the tongue, near the hand crank tongue jack.  The only battery on the tongue is a small battery powering the emergency breakaway switch. The suspension has been rebuilt with Dexter Easy Flex Equalizers and aligned, and all the brakes, drums and hubs are new. I was happy to find the coach included all 7 aluminum tire rims when we bought it. Since the coach is low to the ground, with rounded corners, and three axles, it tows quite nicely. We don’t feel the effect of trucks passing and wind like other taller coaches do.  A hardwired camera is located at the back of the coach, and is viewable, along with a second camera on the van, on a large color screen in the cab. All the running lights, brake lights, and lenses have been replaced. We are impressed with the stability of the coach. Items in the interior are in their places after a day of travel, and the coach feels solid when we are parked in high wind. We tow the coach with our van, Sunny. We’ll include a run-down of the van soon.  

Old Dogs, New Tricks!

You know that moment when you are knee deep in learning a new skill, something you have a genuine interest in, for example it could be starting a new blog, or You Tube, or renovating a vintage coach.. anyway, that moment when you have to sit back and say “This Sh*t is HARD!” Yep, that’s where we are right now.

We romanticized this living on the road and thought our old brains were prepared for new brain tricks.. and yes, we are learning. Again, this sh*t is hard!! It really isn’t that it is too hard, it’s that it’s so out of our wheelhouse that we feel like we have no idea where to start. Thankfully, age does give us one advantage on youth’s brains. We know how to ask for help!

We ask for help from a dear friend who is conquering the learning curve with her blog “The Older Mom”.. check her out! We scour You Tube for every how-to on every subject we don’t know. We sit together and laugh at how much we just don’t know. Then we get back on You Tube and Google and figure it out.

So here we are, almost 8 months into this journey of tiny living on the road, and we finally in a groove of working and playing on the road, being curious and learning new skills as well as adventuring to new places. The blog was much harder to keep up with than we thought. Not because it is so hard, but because there are so many fun things to do out there.. but now we want to share some of those things with you.

So… here it is. Look for a blog update every couple of weeks and …. DRUMROLL PLEASE… A NEW YOU TUBE CHANNEL!!! Yep, Luna and the Seekers will be posting our first video in the next week. We hope you’ll join us!!!

Independence Day with Luna!

Our friends Nick and Aimee.. he handmade this awesome sign for us!

About a  month and a half before closing on the sale of our house, we booked our first campsite for Luna.  The planned date for departure was July 3rd. We knew we would have some things to finish on the road and were good with that… but the closing date on the house was July 5th, so the schedule was determined. 

 As July 3rd approached, we worked hard to get the coach ready.  All of our friends and family kicked in to make this happen. The weather didn’t cooperate, it was either super hot or raining.  Add to that, we were also still emptying our house, and trying to organize the remaining things to take with us. These last days were hard.  Fatigue and emotion were deep and stirring. Added to all the logistics of the house sale and remodeling Luna, we lost two dogs to old age in the previous 5 weeks.  Dear family members that had been with us for more than 15 years. It would be an understatement to say we were done. Done with hot weather, interrupting rains, and done with sharing tears.  

Mica and Skeeter… we had planned on starting this adventure with them along side. It was so difficult to not have the choice. We will miss them dearly.

July 3rd rolled around and the coach was just not ready to leave.  To this day I cannot recall what was not ready, but the fact was.. it wasn’t.  The last few weeks were like that, a blur. I had been working on the coach until midnight or later for several days, at 1:30 am on the 4th of July, I rolled into bed to let Christina know… today is the day we leave. 

We fell asleep knowing the hardest days were behind us.  On the morning of the 4th of July, we woke up to cool, cloudy weather.  I hitched the van to the coach and started finishing details needed to pull out.  A friend in the Avion community was coming over to take my first drive with me. I met him on a Facebook page for Avions last year, and he had been a huge help, visiting the house and cluing me in.  When he arrived we jumped right into the van to go for a drive. 

I had no experience pulling a coach this size, and the brand new brakes had not even been set in.  I looked at him and joked about my first drive in a downpour. All he said was “trial by fire”. After a rainy test drive and a visit to the scales, we shook hands and bid farewell.   Our sister and brother in law showed up like the National Guard and helped us finish up details we hadn’t even thought of until we were supposed to be leaving. We threw more gear into the van, the station wagon, and into our new home on wheels.  Christina headed out to make a couple stops on the way to the lake, and I drove out of the driveway into the rain, headed for long roads and broad horizons. 

I have to admit it felt pretty powerful, and emotional at the same time, but I was so busy clearing corners and gripping the wheel, I had no time for any distractions.  I headed out of the city to highway K10 west, toward Lawrence, Kansas, about one hour away. Settling into the right lane, at 60 miles per hour, with a solid rain coming down, it hit me~ Independence Day.  While the whole country was busy icing down coolers, setting up tents and gassing up boats, we were experiencing our own amazing journey of independence. Independence from mowing the lawn, living in one place year after year and independence from decades of “normal” life. We will always stand at the edge of America’s most celebrated  summer holiday, knowing we too declared our own independence. It inspires us to know this, and to hold it in our hearts. So cheers! Cheers to living in a country where freedom and independence are so readily available. Cheers to hard work and changes in life, and cheers to living out dreams of wide open spaces, windy days and restful nights, and cheers to relishing well earned, independence.  

8 Days to Go!

We are 8 days away from leaving our driveway with the next house. 11 days from closing on the sale of the sticks and bricks home we have lived in for 14 years. It feels insane.

Every time a storm blows through I realize we’ll be in an 8500 pound aluminum tube during future thunder storms. Every morning I walk through an almost completely empty house, comfortably make a pot of french press coffee, waking to the fact that these wide open rooms will soon be behind us. And every morning my lovely bride shuffles out of the bedroom, half asleep and ready for a cup of joe. Within an hour, she’s making lists, kicking me in the can to get to work and joking about our adventure. Rock. Fucking. Solid. A champ to the enth degree. She inspires me. She props me up when I wobble and she hold me tight when I hold her first. This is where the truth shines brightest.

These are the moments when I know, as sure as the sun rising in the east, that we are a team. This project has taken everything we both have. Courage, ingenuity, creativity, strength and above all a sense of humor. This journey would simply not be the same without Christina Jonas. Onward!