2013 Outlander Camping Support Vehicle

Johnboyy

Member
First time poster, long time lurker......

Hi everyone, I've just bought a car that's probably not that common stateside, but it's a good seller here in Ireland. It's a 2.2 diesel, AWD, 7 seater. It replaced a 2008 Nissan XTrail which was a great bus but we wanted an occasional seven seater.

Cars are a lot smaller on average over here, there's not really a whole lot of off-road opportunities so it's a useful choice.

We, wife and two kids, like to day trip and do short camping trips but we're building to longer stays and hope to seek out some of the limited wild camping spots here.


We had what we call the boot box in the XTrail (boot is European for trunk) which is basically a chuck box, a drawer with Weber go anywhere, gas stove, utensils and a small work surface.

We have a nice simple folding leg table we bought last summer which I planned on making a mount for with the boot box, but the new wagon, while having a very similar sized boot has a much narrower, rounded opening and the table won't fit beside the box so today we cut 40mm off the side of the box and raised it up 150 to clear the rounded bottom corner of the hatch.

We have a deck that can be attached to the new narrower box and the table will mount underneath. The whole setup needs to be easy to fit and remove as this is a very multi purpose wagon and those two extra seats are under the boot floor.

I'll post some more pics of the work in progress tomorrow but here's a few from last summer's European road trip.
 

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Johnboyy

Member
Those were the before pics, now to the during pics.

first pic shows the problem with the boot opening, it's got a good sized boot, but the opening is very rounded, the drawer box isnt even fully against the wheelarch in this pic and it is well blocked off, so that was problem number one that needed to be solved, easily done by raising the box up leaving an open comparment underneath for longer items.

The second issue relates to the table. (https://www.decathlon.co.uk/camping-table-2-to-4-people-id_8387454.html ) we had planned on putting a platform across the open space and mounting the table underneath, but the box and table are too wide for the boot opening so the box had to be narrowed as well as being raised. so we cut the 40mm off the side of the box and put a new longer side on to raise it up. The second support is set in slightly on the left hand side to better fit the contours of the wheelarch and also to allow some reinforcement of it's join to the floor of the box.

The second and third pics show the new setup and the detail of the platform join which is held in place with butterfly latches making for easier fitting, removal and storage.

The table will sit in channels underneath the platform making it instantly accessible at a food stop.
 

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Johnboyy

Member
Next jobs will be to make a new drawer and mount the table.

For the drawer I'm undecided how to go. I like the efficiency of the drifta style sliding box but I'm unsure if my joinery would be accurate enough, slides would be easier but more expensive.

The original drawer actually uses a 19inch server rackmount cabinet and rails as it's runners. the upside is they were free and made an instant drawer bottom but the downside is that they took quite a bit of modification to adapt the rails to not mount in a server cabinet, and now the drawer is fundamentally too wide. Also the rails for a 2U server are really at their limit weight wise.

The current plan is to make a new drawer, with two sideways opening small drawers in the bottom which will contain utensils, small cooking stuff then space for pots/pans, stove, bbq etc in the main compartment.

Above the table I will have a slide out work surface, hopefully can pick up a bit of stainless to top that, will just be a slide out between the platform and the table.
 

Johnboyy

Member
In terms of our overall setup the plan would be bags and gear in the boot, under the platform with room for some more up top and to the sides. Will be mounting a dog guard to the platform for protection and carrying a food box up there too for longer trips.

We have a Dometic 12v cooler box for perishables, at the upper end of crappy thermoelectric coolers, that will travel on the middle row for easy access for liquid refreshment on the road, I plan on mounting that using a set of isofix child seat brackets

For camping we use two popup tents which are carried in a roofbox along with sleeping bags and other light things. The box is a bit big but I got it for free years ago so hard to spend on something smaller but ideally I'd like a shorter box and room for a small rack in front of it to carry bodyboards without getting everything else wet and sandy.


Once the interior stuff is done, and looking slightly further down the line I might upgrade the suspension slightly, their is a hybrid version of the outlander available which is a couple of hundred kilos heavier than the diesel so the suspension from one of those would give a light lift. Some smaller rims and marginally bigger, marginally all terrain tyres (probably just a set of M&S all seasons in reality) would complete the package, but they're a long ways off yet.

Oh and this is a quick pic of what it looked like when I got it, looks kinda like a beluga whale
 

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