Friday, May 22, 2009

Answering Questions: Ahoy VARDO Creators AND Visitors and Travelers with MCS

A while back people asked us questions about the building of our vardo. I've added a few other questions and answers that often come up, too. Sorry for the long delay in replying ... here are some answers.

1. WHAT IS THE TOTAL WEIGHT OF THE VARDO PLUS TRAILER? Approximately 3,800 The trailer itself is 950 lbs.

2. WHAT SIZE IS THE TRAILER? 7 feet wide x 12 feet long

3. WHAT IS THE MATERIAL FOR THE INSIDE WALLS? We have 28 gauge stainless steel for the walls with a white oak (solid) 3/8''x 3'' t&g for the roof and painted with milk paint (no sealant or beeswax over the oak)

4. WHAT SIZE TRUCK DID WE USE TO HAUL THE VARDO? We rented a 2500 Heavy Duty GMC truck. It did the job and Pete loaded the bed with tools etc. In the future we would try to get a better set of tires on the rental truck ... the street tires weren't much good on the dirt slopes heading onto The Ledge.

MCS-Related Questions

1. WAS I ABLE TO MOVE IN & SLEEP IN THE VARDO WITHOUT REACTION? Yes. I enjoyed a very peaceful and non-reactive night the first night. That was a major accomplishment. Before we moved the vardo we vacuumed, wiped down the walls and made sure all the fabric had been washed at least twice. We heated and then aired the vardo prior to the move letting the materials 'bake-out' and release.


Window Coverings: The curtains are 100% cotton flannel (our old many many times washed in baking soda and milk) sheets.

Walls: The back wall is hung with a full 100% cotton flannel sheet and it's also backed with an old cotton quilt that has been washed and aired.

Bed: The futon is 100% cotton and organic cotton covering with a wool topper also with organic cotton covering. All of these materials have been washing and aired for months ... we used them in The Kitchenette. We use a silk comforter and cotton sheet and blanket too.

Storage: We keep our clean clothes washed and bagged in old paper bags under the bed

Electrical: We heat with a stainless steel and ceramic electric heater, use one small 40 watt lamp, and run an Austin Air Filter (most of the time) although the air on The Ledge is very clean except for pollens. This laptop is also kept in the vardo either in its traveling case or out on the slantboard/couch.

Couch: My old foam slantboard is covered with Denny Foil to keep the off-gassing from seeping into the house. It seems to be working. In time we will replace the slantboard with a bench Pete builds.

Floor: The ceramic tile floor is covered with two yoga mats (these are old thin, purple foam) and a cotton throw.

Hope these answers help any vardo builders and you who also live with Multiple Chemical Sensitivities. The process is not simple ... it works though and we are thankful for VARDOFORTWO every day, every night.

No pictures tonight ... our connection and downloading is oh so turtle like in its pace. Turtle is a very good way to be sometimes.

All the best ... be of good cheer. Aloha, Mokihana and Pete

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