1988 Toyota 4x4 + 1977 Chinook Build

Hello All,

Tonight I tried to be productive on the project despite being away from my work space and tools until the last week in March. I measured the interior of the Chinook and built the existing interior in Sketchup. I plan to use this program to design additions to the interior. I attempted to build an accurate rear portion of the frame a few nights ago using a schematic for a 1985 Toyota frame. I'm just a novice at Google Sketchup, but I figured it's all overkill anyways since I was really intending to just build out the interior. Here is some progress. *Warning*: These are images of a 3D design and may look skewed or just weird. To see this in 3D, simply download Google Sketchup for FREE and I'll send the file.

Sketch I found on the interwebs to base the exterior on:




Frame design



Existing Interior










If anyone who has Google Sketchup(it's free CAD software, just, err, google it), and would like a copy of my file just message me your email and I'm happy to share. In fact, I'd love to see how someone might redesign the interior!
 
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Greetings All,

Hope everyone is getting out and enjoying this weekend!! Here's an update of the project. I've been using Google Sketchup to brainstorm interior ideas. Since I'm no engineer and my woodworking skills are mediocre at best, I had the idea to use existing camper parts to retrofit inside the Chinook. Specifically, I set my sights on a 1980 or newer Vanagon Westfalia interior. Why reinvent the wheel?? That said, I started looking at westfalia interiors, and even found a version of one already built in sketchup. I figured I could at least find and use the cabinet that contained the sink/stove and the 3way fridge.

Here are a couple sketcup screenshots of the chinook with the aforementioned sink/stove/fridge cabinet, the existing cabinetry in the chinook, and some closets built into the back:






This weekend's score:

So I had been eyeballing this 1980's Vanagon Westfalia in a pasture about 30mi away in Tatum, NM for a few weeks now and finally had the time to stop and ask about it. As a VW owner myself, (the stable has somehow grown to 3 of them) I didn't have high hopes that the owner would let go of it, much less let me scavenge parts out of it. Three things had to come together: They had to be home, they had to say yes, and it had to have camper parts in it. Pretty tall order considering these things are 30 years old and this one had been sitting in the field for some time now.

Turns out I hit the jackpot. The owner bought it in perfect working order, drove it home not realizing it was water-cooled (She said in her day VWs were aircooled, heh). It ran low on coolant and melted the engine. She parked it and said the whole thing was for sale if I wanted it. Told her I only had room to take the interior, offered $300, and she jumped on it. I was beside myself and she was too actually. Said for that price she would have let the whole thing go. With the deal done, the GF and I spent all day yesterday dismantling the whole interior and carefully stuffing it into the Chinook. Sorry I don't have very many photos of the process, daylight was burning and we had a lot of work to accomplish.

The lady says everything worked when it was parked, the water system, fridge, stove, etc. It can use some TLC, but the cabinets and appliances look to be in really good shape. Just dirty and in need of new molding that hasn't shrunk, which is all readily available and on the "to order" list.

What it came with:

3Way fridge/sink/stove cabinet

Permanently mounted propane system. It still had propane in it, so no leaks! Not sure what i'll do with it yet but hey, I paid for it.

11 gallon fresh water tank with immersion pump.

Shore power with receptacles

Rear seat/bed with cushion that covers the engine bay.

Rear closet

Rear, top mounted air conditioner cover. Left the A/C unit as it was powered by the engine. Took the cover to make some matching cabinetry out of it.

Heater core and squirrel fan assembly that mounts under the rear seat and connects to engine coolant. I plan to splice into the Toyota's heater hoses to give the option of camper heat while the engine is warm.

The flip out portion and cushions for the pop-top mounted bed. Who knows how but I figure it could come into play? Brain wheels spinning. LOL.


Here are some shots of the donor interior and it getting stuffed in the Chinook.

The Donor



Inside Cabinetry
Tall cabinet: sink/stove on top, 3way fridge (runs on propane, AC, DC), and some storage.
Short cabinet next to rear seat: Storage, table mount, plus an 11gal fresh water tank with imersion pump and AC outlets for use with shore power.





Propane Tank



Chinook full of goodies


 
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turbotommy

Observer
I'm interested to see what you come up with as I'll probably be doing an interior Reno on mine next winter .what is the measurement of that propane tank?
 
I'm interested to see what you come up with as I'll probably be doing an interior Reno on mine next winter .what is the measurement of that propane tank?
You can find a diagram with dimensions of these Westy tanks here(see images):
http://www.gowesty.com/product-details.php?v=&id=2447

That page also has a link to the problems with old westy tanks. This one appears In great condition for it's age, even has some propane left in it. I didn't want to drive with it but IDK how to get it out safely before road tripping back up to the workshop in Kansas, I suppose I'll just be careful not to get hit. Starting in 2003 all propane tanks had to be equipped with an auto stop, I doubt this one has it, so I'm wondering what to do with it. I had planned on adding an Extend-a-Stay to allow a 20lb portable tank hookup. Anyone have any suggestions as to a proper propane setup?
 

turbotommy

Observer
You can find a diagram with dimensions of these Westy tanks here(see images):
http://www.gowesty.com/product-details.php?v=&id=2447

That page also has a link to the problems with old westy tanks. This one appears In great condition for it's age, even has some propane left in it. I didn't want to drive with it but IDK how to get it out safely before road tripping back up to the workshop in Kansas, I suppose I'll just be careful not to get hit. Starting in 2003 all propane tanks had to be equipped with an auto stop, I doubt this one has it, so I'm wondering what to do with it. I had planned on adding an Extend-a-Stay to allow a 20lb portable tank hookup. Anyone have any suggestions as to a proper propane setup?
i was thinking of replacing my old horizontal tank [driverside behind rear wheel ] with 2 20lbs upright by cutting out the floor and making a hinge style bottom to put the tanks in. some older 80s cadilac/chevy caprice cars that were taxis had smaller tanks under trunks that might work.this is my next project on mine as im just about completed a mercedes diesel swap on my 1986 4x4 chinook
 
i was thinking of replacing my old horizontal tank [driverside behind rear wheel ] with 2 20lbs upright by cutting out the floor and making a hinge style bottom to put the tanks in. some older 80s cadilac/chevy caprice cars that were taxis had smaller tanks under trunks that might work.this is my next project on mine as im just about completed a mercedes diesel swap on my 1986 4x4 chinook
Wow that's genius. I'm assuming you've confirmed two 20lb tanks will fit side by side? The dimensions of the Westy tank are disappointing. Won't fit between the cab and rear wheels, and it also won't fit between the rear wheels and the drop down of the chinook in the rear.

Option A: would be between the frame rails against the cab with a remote fill port.

Option B: cut hole in back side of existing propane compartment, then cut rear of fender to act as a door to access the fill port.

Neither option seems worth putting a measley 3lbs of propane onboard. So tonight I ordered an "Extend a stay" propane kit. I will disconnect the Westy propane system at the tank, and simply run the "extend a stay" hose to a portable 20lb tank. I will have to disconnect and store the tank while travelling, but it's currently the easiest and fastest solution for now. If I plan to add a permanent tank somewhere, the "extend a stay" kit will still be used so the purchase isn't frivolous (I hope).

PS: Turbotommy, please say you have a thread started on your chinook? I'm VERY interested in diesel swap. Leaning on a VW 1.9L tdi (ALH) because it's what I know.


In other News

Today I also ordered:

1/8" Hehr Glazing Bead and butyl tape to reseal the camper windows. The old stuff has shrunk as is common with old campers.
Acidic window brightener and a cheap metal polishing drillbit set for the window frames.
Sheet of smoked lexan to replace the the birdsnest windows. One is cracked.

Plasti-Dip for the beat up old rims. Partly to just experiment with the stuff because I'm debating dip or wrap for the wheels on the daily.

A tube bumper from addicted off road (With square stinger): http://www.addictedoffroad.com/inde...oducts_id=91:4170d63efe4401a1a05797633bc6a8f9

An 8000lb smittybuilt winch and some D-Rings to go with the bumper. The factory bumper beaten, broken, and tired.

(as posted above) an Extend a stay propane kit.



We have leftover tongue and groove wood flooring from renovating our house (motorhome) that we plan to use for the floors. White bead board will be replacing the coraplast inner walls.

I'll be taking a week off work the last week of March (2wks), and probably won't have much to report until I dig into it then.
 

turbotommy

Observer
Wow that's genius. I'm assuming you've confirmed two 20lb tanks will fit side by side? The dimensions of the Westy tank are disappointing. Won't fit between the cab and rear wheels, and it also won't fit between the rear wheels and the drop down of the chinook in the rear.

Option A: would be between the frame rails against the cab with a remote fill port.

Option B: cut hole in back side of existing propane compartment, then cut rear of fender to act as a door to access the fill port.

Neither option seems worth putting a measley 3lbs of propane onboard. So tonight I ordered an "Extend a stay" propane kit. I will disconnect the Westy propane system at the tank, and simply run the "extend a stay" hose to a portable 20lb tank. I will have to disconnect and store the tank while travelling, but it's currently the easiest and fastest solution for now. If I plan to add a permanent tank somewhere, the "extend a stay" kit will still be used so the purchase isn't frivolous (I hope).

PS: Turbotommy, please say you have a thread started on your chinook? I'm VERY interested in diesel swap. Leaning on a VW 1.9L tdi (ALH) because it's what I know.


In other News

Today I also ordered:

1/8" Hehr Glazing Bead and butyl tape to reseal the camper windows. The old stuff has shrunk as is common with old campers.
Acidic window brightener and a cheap metal polishing drillbit set for the window frames.
Sheet of smoked lexan to replace the the birdsnest windows. One is cracked.

Plasti-Dip for the beat up old rims. Partly to just experiment with the stuff because I'm debating dip or wrap for the wheels on the daily.

A tube bumper from addicted off road (With square stinger): http://www.addictedoffroad.com/inde...oducts_id=91:4170d63efe4401a1a05797633bc6a8f9

An 8000lb smittybuilt winch and some D-Rings to go with the bumper. The factory bumper beaten, broken, and tired.

(as posted above) an Extend a stay propane kit.



We have leftover tongue and groove wood flooring from renovating our house (motorhome) that we plan to use for the floors. White bead board will be replacing the coraplast inner walls.

I'll be taking a week off work the last week of March (2wks), and probably won't have much to report until I dig into it then.[/QUOTE





the upper window can be a tricky thing to seal.i had problems when i used that style of tape the curve of the plastic combined with the aluminum rings leaves some problems. if you replace the old screws be aware of the lenght ,not much room for longer ones.i used a silicone style selant on these windows.if your going to stick with 15'' rims , the stock early 80's sr5 solid axle rims seem to give a good off set for the front and back and their cheap .check that gutter that runs around the top of the body ,the rivets get loose and are not solid so they can pose a problem .
 
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turbotommy

Observer
i dont have a build thread although ive taken a few photos . the diesel swap is going well ,my old 22r had seen alot of kms and the fuel mileage was bad .i used the 4x4 labs adapter to mate the om617 to the toy trans .ive been doing this project in chunks .did the chinook swap last winter started boxing day finished march,this year i started the diesel swap on boxing day and am about 2weeks away rom it being back on the road.next boxing day ill rip out the interior [its mint still with the orange shag] and change it up. the chinook platform is great and ive done some mild wheeling and it worked well.my only complaint is on a river crossing the water came half way up the doors but the back of the chinook was bobbing and made the crossing interesting
 
Turbotommy,

Thanks for the advice on the windows! I've read a few threads about Chinook window repair, all complain about the seized or stuck screws. Knock on wood, mine look to be in good condition. I plan to replace them with hex head, and will make sure to purchase the same length. I have used butyl tape before when I replaced the skylight, the water heater, and other odds-n-ends on our 34' diesel pusher. I hope some experience with it is enough to get the Chinook windows properly sealed.

I'm really jealous of your diesel options in Canada! I plan to swap a VW diesel engine in the Chinook when/if the time comes. Specifically an ALH block with a mechanical pump. I have 2 mk4 Jettas with the ALH, one with 265k miles and one with +350k. Both are the most reliable things I've ever driven. A few upgrades will provide enough power for my needs plus there are parts available for them, unlike a om617.

I understand how busy life can be, especially with projects. I hope you find the time to throw a build thread together as it sounds like a fantastic machine! I've had my last Toyota (1994 single cab 4x4) in water half way up the doors, but I can only imagine doing it in moving water with the equivalent of an air balloon attached to the rear. Sounds like a true adventure!
 
You should get the pop top off that Westy. They bring a pretty good price themselves!
I would have taken the whole thing in a second but I have nowhere to put it. Everything was there when it was parked, I'ts been sitting for a year or more it looked like. The engine overheated is all I know. The older lady who owns it asked me to make her an offer for the interior. When I said $300, she told me she'd give me the whole thing for that. It's still sitting out there if anyone is interested I'm sure she'd be happy to sell it. Just outside Tatum, NM, if anyone is interested! I'm a sucker for saving old vehicles, so it made me sad to leave it. I can probably get the address if anyone wants it, Tatum is a one stop sign town, easy to find. The top mechanism worked fine, the canvas is torn, and the roof vent is missing so the interior wasn't going to last much longer but thankfully it's in the desert(ish). The underbelly looked to be in great condition, no rot. I took the interior, propane system, seat belts, and rear heater core. Bring a trailer or a dolly with some spare tires as a couple were flat.
 
Hello again, followers!!! I have put finishing this thread off for far too long. Life gets busy, ya know?

OK so in April I took some time off work to complete this dream rig. In all, it took right about a month worth of ~12hr days.


How about we start off from the beginning. The PO was kind enough to give pictures of the conversion, so I'll post them now:

The birth of SuperTruck














http://i.imgur.com/xicxDgd.jpg

The PO used heavy duty ratchet straps strung between two trees to lift the front, and a high-lift bumper jack on the rear assisted with 2x4s to hold it up until he could back the donor truck under the camper. The cab was left intact to prevent any leaks, to keep the cab warm during winter drives, and to keep the dog in his (now her, new owner new dog, same reason to keep the cab walled off) place. The sliding rear glass has been retained to have a small pass thru. A piece of garden hose wedged between the camper and the cab was used as a seal, then silicone caulked all the way around. This was also the factory Chinook seal, surprisingly. I can report that the seal works great, no leaks between the cab and camper. I have since created a permanent pass-thru delete out of plywood and fiberglass. It will come later, after demo.

Not imaged is the 1" steel sub-frame created that the camper sits on to sure up the corners from sagging. The original wood floor of these old Chinooks deteriorate over the 40+years of adventuring.

Day one of my story with SuperTruck, a/k/a the best craigslist find I've ever came across.

 
Okay, so the moment everyone has been waiting for:


DEMO DAY

Everything must go! Time to build it better, faster, stronger.... The windows were the only things to give me trouble. They are in a frame that sandwiches the camper walls, using what seemed like hundreds of phillips head screws to hold it together. Mine were better than some I've seen, but several were seized and stripped. I used a dremel to cut a flat head groove to back them out.






Close-up of the pass-through area. As you can see, it has a large hole in the floor, so I'll be sealing it up.











First things first, the 1" steel skeleton was bare metal and a bit rusty. I hit it with a wire wheel brush, then sprayed it with a couple coats of rustoleum's rust-to-primer. I also re-glued the fiberglass shell to the skeleton under the windows. It had detached and was floppy.





Next up will begin the rebuilding process. Tune in tomorrow night!
 
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