By Russ and Tiña De Maris
If you own a “vintage” RV, you probably have a “bag of tricks” you reach into to make your RVing life easier. Older equipment can sometimes act up, and there’s not always a modern fix for problems. Here’s one we ran into.
Some RV dinettes are equipped with a single, folding leg. With the table in the “sit down and eat” position, the folding leg is down at a slight angle. The other end of the table is supported by a hinge-bracket system that attaches to steel retaining plates, permanently affixed to the wall. When it’s bedtime, the leg folds up against the bottom of the table, the hinges removed from the retaining brackets, and the table is then flopped down into position, allowing the table and the two booth seats to act as a bed platform. It’s simple and efficient.
Trouble is, if the table is in the “eating” position, as the rig bounces down the road, the foot pad of the leg tends to jump around. If it’s in contact with a vinyl floor, it doesn’t take long to, first, mar the floor, and with longer exposure, dig a hole in that vinyl floor, leaving an unsightly mess. Ask us – we know, after putting down brand-new, soft vinyl flooring. Simply replacing the furniture tip on the bottom of the table leg with a crutch tip helps, but still doesn’t end the problem.
A little head-scratching and less than $5 bought us an attractive solution to the problem. The local hardware store had a wide selection of wall door stops. These little characters are designed to stop door knobs from crunching holes in drywall. Our “Classic Solid Brass” unit came built with a rubber stop designed to rebound a door knob, but by removing the stop, the cup that held that stop was just the right size to slip our table leg tip into. In our case, the product was a Stanley V1932, and brass was just great for our color scheme. The store also carried similar stops in brushed chrome.
Getting the stop out of the unit required a pair of scissors. The back plate of the unit that holds the rubber stop in place is a round chunk of metal, held on by a couple of small projections on the brass trim. By using a pair of scissors to twist that plate around (with a couple of well-placed holes in the plate), we easily removed the back plate. We then popped out the rubber stop. Put the plate back on, twist it to lock it back in place, and your new floor socket is ready to install.
For us, it was easy to determine where to place the new floor socket – after all, the chewed up vinyl “marked the spot.” Otherwise, it would have been simple to use a felt-tip marker to outline around the furniture tip of the table leg where it sits on the floor. Move the table leg out of the way, place the floor socket where you needed it, and screw down through the back plate with the provided screw.
It’s quick. It’s easy. And it looks good. No more “walking” table leg, and no more messed up floor!