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Old 03-21-2013, 01:04 PM   #11 (permalink)
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3A = 2nd gen

He did the pusher trailer twice; the first version was a manny. The websnap may not have caught the older pages. I don't know how or why that would work that way but I definitely remember a stunned afternoon of eating lunch at my desk, marveling at the off-the-shelf workarounds the guy built to operate the manual remotely.

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Old 04-08-2013, 05:53 PM   #12 (permalink)
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What would make a good light weight chassis for a small 20 foot RV anyone?
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Old 04-08-2013, 06:02 PM   #13 (permalink)
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If you are building it yourself, I'd go with the Mercedes Sprinter chassis. It is diesel. They have several ready-made RV's on that chassis including the Itasca Navion Itasca Motorhomes - 2012 Navion
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Old 04-08-2013, 09:29 PM   #14 (permalink)
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I always thought an older bread truck would be good. Many are 4BT powered, aluminum bodied, so they shouldn't be too heavy. They are bricks, but that just makes it more fun to try to aero mod them. And they are an awful lot cheaper than a sprinter.
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Old 04-09-2013, 12:57 AM   #15 (permalink)
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I believe it would worth to wait for the Ram ProMaster instead of getting a Sprinter. The lower cargo platform, since it's FWD, allows to a lower overall height without sacrificing the internal height.


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Originally Posted by pete c View Post
I always thought an older bread truck would be good. Many are 4BT powered, aluminum bodied, so they shouldn't be too heavy. They are bricks, but that just makes it more fun to try to aero mod them. And they are an awful lot cheaper than a sprinter.
The 4BT is a great engine, all-mechanical which eases the adaptability to some different-grade fuels and doesn't have an ECM to be turned into e-waste when something goes wrong.
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Old 04-09-2013, 08:07 AM   #16 (permalink)
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What would make a good light weight chassis for a small 20 foot RV anyone?
Why not dissect a SPORTSMOBILE or ROADTREK to see what is aboard and how it is configured (space, weight, capacities). Check vehicle manufacturer (GM or FORD) curb weights, and then above aftermarket weights, dry to get an idea of how the additions weigh.

As well, an AIRSTREAM BAMBI. A moho gives up a good deal of "living space" compared to a trailer for the drivetrain and controls.

The AIRSTREAM INTERSTATE is much loved by it's owners. Note the prices new and used. Again, do a dissection.

See also the layout of AVION or CAYO truck campers from 1968-1971. Space utililization. They tended to weigh 1800-lbs "dry" and about 2200-lbs "wet".

As in my post above: is this to be an all-weather camper where you expect to both cook and sleep onboard? That is fundamental (and the biggest FE penalty) as glorified car camping (modified minivan, for instance) with a tent is highly FE-concious by comparison.

A "pop-up" trailer, or HI-LO, is the best place, IMO, to compare moho versus trailer if one is genuinely concerned about en-route fuel economy for an all-weather camper. A CASITA, also (and likely the best value as a TDI Rabbit can be made to pull one).


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Old 04-09-2013, 10:20 AM   #17 (permalink)
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Hey Slowmover,

Thanks for all the useful advice and pointers

My thought for this was to build a scratchbuilt RV from the ground up. This way I could tailor it exactly for not only our needs but for best fuel economy and comfort as well.

We would use it to travel the entire North America and most likely down to the Panama Canal! Who knows we may also venture into South America with it as well.

Since we would be spending a lot of time in it we would need it to be fully established so bathroom, kitchen, living area would most likely be preferred. I know this is what my wife would want so if I am going to do it I would like to make her happy and comfortable.
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Old 04-10-2013, 09:50 AM   #18 (permalink)
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There are examples of "scratch-built" out there. Ranging from folks who take an existing trailer shell (AIRSTREAM), to truly from-the-ground-up.

While the work and craftsmanship is, at times, mind-bendlingly good (and some just pedestrian) everyone has to work with the same constraints. Space is a bigger problem to arrange over weight (and more important, overall shape).

Thus the recommendation on "dissection". Dimensions, first.

Re-inventing the wheel (trying to do better what professional engineers and designers have done for decades) usually comes up short. I would assume it, in fact, that compromises in one direction lead unerringly to shortcomings in another. The evidence is apparent given some experience with which to read some of the blogs and threads.

RV's are duration-limited according to water capacity. And are fairly well impossible without propane. Space to sleep, and the ability to cook. All else is detail (and of minor consequence by comparison).

Where re-supply on a daily basis is possible, then fuel to move the vehicle can be minimized. Past 48-hours or so is where the difficulties start to arise. System size[s] and complexity.

Look forward to what you come up with.

On this site (in other threads) are some examples also worth noting, among them, ULTRAVAN.

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Old 04-10-2013, 12:53 PM   #19 (permalink)
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I don't know if you folks have seen them in your areas, but around here a lot of the UPS trucks are hydrids. UPS Hybrid Electric Vehicle Fleet - UPS Pressroom

That has the possibility to be a good start for a conversion vehicle as it's big enough, though I have no idea as to the details of the drivetrain. Might be something to look into.

Edit: judging from the picture, I am thinking they are built by Eaton. http://www.eaton.com/Eaton/ProductsS...ons/index.htm#
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Old 04-11-2013, 12:36 AM   #20 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by War_Wagon View Post
I don't know if you folks have seen them in your areas, but around here a lot of the UPS trucks are hydrids. UPS Hybrid Electric Vehicle Fleet - UPS Pressroom

That has the possibility to be a good start for a conversion vehicle as it's big enough, though I have no idea as to the details of the drivetrain. Might be something to look into.

Edit: judging from the picture, I am thinking they are built by Eaton. Hybrid Applications
Finding a retired hybrid UPS truck might be still hard. BTW Hino also offers a hybrid truck back there...

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