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Truck Camping & Camping Gear Including truck campers, camping shells, campers, & tents.

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Old 02-24-2012, 01:34 AM   #1
auto117584
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Default 95 B2300 with camper I built

Hi, everybody,
I moved to Washington State from upstate NY 9 months ago. I built this camper shell to transport all my stuff, half of which I promptly gave away when I got here. Now I'm going to do some inside work to it. Which is why I'm here visiting TRS, because I want to install a couple forklift batteries in series to get 12V, to power my stuff. I want to charge the batteries off the truck when I'm driving, or off a 110 outlet at a campground, etc. And when I use my "stuff", and the truck isn't running, I want the truck battery isolated from the load. All my stuff runs on dc, different voltages, and each one has a charger. I could probably use an inverter to run a strip of outlets, and plug in all the chargers: Cell phone, laptop, boom box. Plus I want a couple or three lights, and a small dc fan for my fireplace intake air. I don't know if the inverter is the best route, or should i buy a device that can put out exactly so many dc volts, and use it to feed my devices, instead of using their own chargers.

So I need a book about how to do the dc system. Or knowing the key words to use, I can go look in the library for a book. Wiring DC Campers?

So I built the shell in NY, 3/8" cdx plywood, 1x2 white pine studs, high grade polyurethane construction adhesive, and exterior grade star screw. I predrilled everything through the plywood. I used flat 2x4's for triangulation braces so the leading edge and the top edge of the thing, the part that hits the 80mph wind, is solid as a rock. The leading edge and the top edge of the roof both have double 2x4 headers going across, glued and screwed.

On top of the plywood I put two coats of epoxy resin, and I used fiberglass cloth on all joints and corners and edges. That made it waterproof. Then I put two coats of Above Water Line marine paint on top of the resin, and did it in a sort of artsy fartsy way. Some of it looks stupid, like the hatch marks that are supposed to be a weave? And the first aid cross. Goofy. But the rest of it is okay.

So on the inside there are three layers. I have three 2' x 5' panels that join up with the floor of the overcab to make one long flat floor from front to back. It's about 8'6" x 5' 0". I had my queen mattress up there, but gave it to someone. Now i use a foam pad.

I'm going to build some cabinets along the two sides and the front of the bed, that will double as short tables and a couch seat. The back corner will have a space for my twig-burning cook stove, and I'll have an exhaust hood installed right over it, attached to the framing of the shell. I'm looking for a tiny woodstove for it, but will set it up for both the open fire cook stove, and if I find a woodstove, it's pipe will fit right up in there.









Anyway, I've been drawing and measuring and drawing and thinking, and I'll probably buy the materials to do it tomorrow. I'll be hitting the road about March 13th, maybe sooner, for some exploration, truck camping, backpacking, and plain old camping out! I'll get some pix tomorrow, the before shot - the big empty, showing the three panels that can fit in several places. Like for a table possibly. And I'll figure out how to get a picture on here of my drawings of the layout, cross-section, construction details, etc of the cabinet/seats.

The back end is 3" higher than the front now, because I had the rear leafs retempered, and I added a heavy duty leaf to each side (duh, each side). And i added new shocks in back. The front has not been retempered, and has the worn out shocks, and it sits 3" lower. I wonder how to fix that.

ok, I know I'll find out here. TRS rocks. Like the Red Sox. (Born in Boston.)

The shell weighs 750, and with the cabinet/seats, I think that will be 850.

Last edited by auto117584; 02-24-2012 at 01:40 AM.
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Old 02-24-2012, 07:41 AM   #2
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throw some over load springs on that. and it look great
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Old 02-24-2012, 08:18 AM   #3
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looks good,i like how you slanted the front for aero dynamics,good job.kinda motivates me to try building one for my truck.i probably cant make mine as tall
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Old 02-24-2012, 08:22 AM   #4
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Its kinda rough looking, but ingenious at the same time. Good job!
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Old 02-24-2012, 10:57 AM   #5
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Looks good.
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Old 02-24-2012, 12:47 PM   #6
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not bad for what you have invested..
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Old 02-24-2012, 05:39 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stegomon View Post
throw some over load springs on that. and it look great
do you have a link for the springs? Thanks!
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Old 02-24-2012, 05:40 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by infantry grunt View Post
looks good,i like how you slanted the front for aero dynamics,good job.kinda motivates me to try building one for my truck.i probably cant make mine as tall
The truck is actually more stable on the road with the camper. Even the 18 wheelers don't push it over when I pass them. I get 18mpg at 70mph with the shell.
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Old 02-24-2012, 05:41 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by brinker88 View Post
Its kinda rough looking, but ingenious at the same time. Good job!
Thanks!
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Old 02-24-2012, 10:53 PM   #10
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Heh, heh. I remember you getting broke down in some forest last year.

Good to hear you are making out OK.

You got a lot of spirit! Still Bloggin? How about a link?
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