Building our box out of wood?

1000arms

Well-known member
No need for wheel wells in the OP's camper. :) See the OP's rig: https://expeditionportal.com/forum/threads/go-big-or-go-home.213984/
Is that the only thing you got out of my post?
No. It was the only part I chose to comment on. :) I wasn't sure if you were familiar with the OP's rig, so I included a link to another of the OP's threads with photographs of his type of rig.

I guessed, but I wasn't entirely sure what you meant by:
... The floor can be webbed like the pic yet the ones over the wheels don't maybe to create wheel wells. ...
:unsure:
 

MTVR

Well-known member
We're not interested in hacking up the stock flat bed, nor are we interested in scrapping it (which would require us to have to develop our own torsion-free mounting system). We're not interested in creating a vehicle-specific box at all.
 

Darwin

Explorer
I would suggest going with composite foam core panels like what TotalComposites sells. You will have the benefits of a box that can be assembled quickly, strong, and well insulated. They are alsos tested and proven design. You could end up wasting a lot of time and money pursuing a non conventional build method.

The better decision would be to just go with a Bliss mobile box.
 

MTVR

Well-known member
We cut the front bulkhead off the truck's bed, in anticipation of mounting our new home to it.

We purchased an Energy Star rated insulated steel prehung entry door, as well as ordering Energy Star rated insulated black vinyl screened sliding double-pane windows. We're fine-tuning our lumber order, and will submit it in when the weather breaks...
 

1000arms

Well-known member
We cut the front bulkhead off the truck's bed, in anticipation of mounting our new home to it.

We purchased an Energy Star rated insulated steel prehung entry door, as well as ordering Energy Star rated insulated black vinyl screened sliding double-pane windows. We're fine-tuning our lumber order, and will submit it in when the weather breaks...
Oh well, so much for the dual-container double-decker camper/RTT idea. :cool:

Sounds like things are coming along!

What are your plans for finishing the outside of the cabin?
 

MTVR

Well-known member
We are learning that Behr exterior house paint can be formulated in certain flat colors, that when applied with a cheap airless sprayer, bear a striking resemblance to the military CARC paint, while being much less toxic.

We plan to mask off the windows, mirrors, wiper rubbers, exterior lights, reflectors, tires, mud flaps, battery box, solar panels, information/warning plaques, VIN plate, and key holes, and just spray the whole thing, just like the military does.

I know it sounds hokey, but there are a lot of former military vehicles that have been painted this way, and it works great...
 
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1000arms

Well-known member
We are learning that Behr exterior house paint can be formulated in certain flat colors, that when applied with a cheap airless sprayer, bear a striking resemblance to the military CARC paint, while being much less toxic. We plan to mask off the windows, mirrors, wiper rubbers, exterior lights, reflectors, tires, mud flaps, battery box, solar panels, information/warning plaques, VIN plate, and key holes, and just spray the whole thing, just like the military does. I know it sounds hokey, but there are a lot of former military vehicles that have been painted this way, and it works great...
A while back, I designed and built a small camper trailer to tow behind my Jeep. 45 degree angle at the back for departure angle. Same size rims and tires as on my Jeep. Same track-width. Torsion axle stubs. I welded up my frame with a receiver hitch front and rear on the trailer. Pintle ring inserted in to the front receiver on the trailer. Pintle hook in the rear receiver on my Jeep. Tongue long enough that combined with the pintle hook-ring setup, I could turn with the tongue more than 90 degrees from straight ahead towing, without Jeep body to trailer body contact. Trailer body built out of 2x layed flat and 3/8" plywood, with 3/4" floor. Silicone on every joint and sheetrock screws. No insulation or interior sheathing, so very easy to see how all the joints held up. I painted the outside with Rustoleum white metal paint. I towed it across the US. It spent a lot of time in the Pacific Northwest rain (and some snow), but had no leaks when I sold it 5 years later. :)

It doesn't sound hokey to me. :)

I glued and screwed every bit of the perimeter, on every panel, to something solid. The glue did the sealing and the screws pulled the panels tight and clamped them until the glue cured. I was careful to avoid pushing all of the glue out of the joints.

I painted multiple coats of Rustoleum metal paint (white) and let the plywood soak up all it could, especially the edges of the plywood.
 

Recommended books for Overlanding

MTVR

Well-known member
We plan to seal the entire exterior and interior with epoxy. The paint will simply be the outermost layer, and the first line of protection. If trees scrape off any paint, the epoxy will still keep any moisture out of the wood, and we can then touch up the paint at our convenience...
 

nathane

Active member
Have a look at Jotomastic hardtop AX (maybe some of their other formulations). 2 pack epoxy compatible gelcoat paint used on ships and oil rigs etc. Can be sprayed. It is very tough.
 

1000arms

Well-known member
We plan to seal the entire exterior and interior with epoxy. The paint will simply be the outermost layer, and the first line of protection. If trees scrape off any paint, the epoxy will still keep any moisture out of the wood, and we can then touch up the paint at our convenience...
Easy touch up!

What is your construction plan? Timber-frame construction using 12" beams? :cool:
 

MTVR

Well-known member
Lol, no. Mostly 2x4 construction, with some larger beams to mount several small winches and the hinges for our "drawbridge" style rear door. 16" on center in the floor, 24" on center everywhere else. 3/4" tongue and groove plywood glued and screwed to the outside, floor, and the inside wall of the drawbridge. Full 3.5" thick polyiso insulation throughout. 1/2" plywood glued and screwed on the other three interior walls and ceiling. All perpendicular internal members made of 3/4" plywood, glued and screwed to the structure to further triangulate adjacent floor to wall and wall to ceiling elements. Insulated Energy Star rated steel door. Insulated Energy Star rated double-pane screened vinyl sliding windows. 12,000 BTU heat pump. And some other stuff too...
 

1000arms

Well-known member
Lol, no. Mostly 2x4 construction, with some larger beams to mount several small winches and the hinges for our "drawbridge" style rear door. 16" on center in the floor, 24" on center everywhere else. 3/4" tongue and groove plywood glued and screwed to the outside, floor, and the inside wall of the drawbridge. Full 3.5" thick polyiso insulation throughout. 1/2" plywood glued and screwed on the other three interior walls and ceiling. All perpendicular internal members made of 3/4" plywood, glued and screwed to the structure to further triangulate adjacent floor to wall and wall to ceiling elements. Insulated Energy Star rated steel door. Insulated Energy Star rated double-pane screened vinyl sliding windows. 12,000 BTU heat pump. And some other stuff too...
That should keep you dry and climate controlled!

I don't think it matters for what you are building, but are you aware of polyiso insulation having less R-value in cold temperatures? https://www.energyvanguard.com/blog/59419/Big-News-The-R-Value-of-Insulation-Is-Not-a-Constant
 

MTVR

Well-known member
Yes I am.

But we are more concerned about insulation against heat, than insulation against cold...
 

IdaSHO

IDACAMPER
Final color (especially roof) and windows will have just as much to do with solar gain than insulation type.
 
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