New Birch End Cap!

$42.00 for two sheets of 1/8″  Birch plywood and about $25.00 worth of rivets = New End Cap!  We spent the weekend building it, I stained it yesterday and we sprayed it today. What a difference!

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11 thoughts on “New Birch End Cap!

  1. So impressed by your birch end cap! We are doing a similar reno on our 1969 Overlander, not quite as far along as you folks yet. Were looking at replacing our subfloor next. We definitely got rid of our end caps though, they were in bad shape. This gives us some hope! Check us out @


  2. kaylin smith

    My husband and I are planning to do the same thing in our ’72 ambassador! Could you shoot me an email and tell me how you did it exactly? The only part that I don’t really understand is how you got the birch to stick up there? was it nailed or glued before you put the strips in between with the rivets on top of those? Also, were the strips pieces of birch that you cut or was it something separate that you purchased? Maybe there is a tutorial somewhere that you could direct me to. Sorry for the super long comment! Thank you so much, in advance!


    1. Hi Kaylin,

      I wish so bad we would have taken more pictures and made some sort of video tutorial when we did this! We have had several requests for patterns but we didn’t keep them. 😦

      First we cut strips of Masonite panel board (Lowe’s or Home Depot has it) to use as “ribs” to attach the birch panels to. We used blocks of Styrofoam glued to the outer shell and to the Masonite to keep the space between the Masonite ribs and the outer shell consistent. The Masonite ribs are riveted to the existing aluminum ribs of the trailer at the top edge and bottom (above the window).

      Next we cut and fit our patterns out of cardboard for the birch panels. Take your time doing this…it’s important that they fit well and hit the ribs in the center so you have room to get the rivets in. Before we started putting the cut Birch panels up, we insulated the ceiling. The birch will bow up to meet the ribs pretty easily but we had some suggestions from others that steaming it would make it easier if you have a hand held steamer. It’s a two man job but three would be better to hold the panel in place and get it riveted to the ribs. I held it in place while Dan drilled the holes through the birch and the Masonite and put cleco fasteners to hold in place. If you don’t have any of these, they are a lifesaver. We bought them on Amazon and the Cleco pliers at Harbor Freight I think. They come in several sizes and really come in handy to hold things in place before you rivet.We then riveted it to the Masonite and put washers on the rivets on the back side of the Masonite just to be sure it held good. This is what holds the panels up there.

      Then we cut strips of Birch to rivet over the seams. These strips are really just for decoration to hide the seams. I always thought it would look cool to use strips of aluminum in place of the birch here.

      We haven’t had any problems with either panel. No cracks, etc. They have held up great and we love them. So much better than those icky plastic headbanger end caps!

      Hope this helps! Let me know if you have any more questions. We would love to see it when you are done! Good luck!


      1. kaylin smith

        Thank you so much for the reply!! That helps so much! It’ll probably be a while before we get to that step, but I will definitely shoot you any questions we have and a photo of the final product. I can’t wait to get started on it! I love this look way better than the broken shelf that was there with a control panel that is peeling all apart. Thank you again!


  3. Chris Morlan

    Planning on a similar upgrade to a 54 Flying Cloud with existing aluminum end caps. My plan is to use aluminum flat bar instead of the birch strips and attach it over the existing panel seams. I hope it looks as nice as yours.


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