Flatbed FWC on an AT modified RAM

chet6.7

Explorer
I would like to make use of the space for the winch,some fogs down low like that would be handy,measurements of the winch space would be greatly appreciated.
I am thinking of running Hella 4000's on the bar you have the LEDS mounted. How many tabs does the bumper come with?
Your pictures are much better than the one's on ARB's site,theirs aren't very good at all.
I guess down under one just has to look at a rig in a parking lot,I have never seen an ARB bumper in real life.
 

WeeJeep2

Adventurer
Awesome build! What are you looking at for mpg's?
Thanks. On the most recent trip we were running in the 70 to 75 mph range most of the time up and down the hills while towing the adventure trailer and got 14 mpg.




I would like to make use of the space for the winch,some fogs down low like that would be handy,measurements of the winch space would be greatly appreciated.
Space is 7" tall by 30" wide between the tow hooks. Pics of the light mount tabs below.



 

WeeJeep2

Adventurer
Time for a few more updates. These are mostly on the camper.

I added the same screen door handle that I think most people with a FWC have added so you can pull the door shut behind you when it swings wide open.


There isn't a lot of space for the handle to clear the door frame. To make sure I put screws into the full frame of the door I opted to grind out a little of the door frame with a dremel tool and put some white appliance touch up paint on the area.



For ease of access around the house I use a modified ladder the AT crew came up with. It works well in the driveway or a flat surface when the height from the bed to ground is the length of the ladder as it was built. It is light and fast to deploy and is good for just quickly getting up inside. At the campsite we definitely prefer the stairs.



Close up of the ladder top where it hooks on the stake pocket rails.


On the interior we have the Silver Spur color package. We found a good match for some indoor/outdoor carpet at Home Depot and put it on all walking surfaces. There is some of the rubber skid resistant padding under portions of the carpet to keep it from sliding around. It all can be pulled out for cleaning. It has worked well in dry weather camping. Shoes off at the door if it's muddy out.

Interior looking toward the front.


Interior looking toward the back. The foot area under the table, (i.e. the shower drain pan) is covered with the same carpet.


In the rear under-seat storage compartments we added vertical dividers where the rear end curves up. They are painted gray to match the rest of the interior. On the passenger side the space contains 3 or 4 clear plastic tubs, one for snacks, one for breakfast goods, and one for lunch and dinner goods. The odd curved space in the back has some plastic utensils, paper plates, cups and other light misc. stuff for when we just don't want to do dishes. We have a small blue folding cloth basket that is visible under the upper left box. We use it to go "shopping" in the camper from dry and cold storage before a meal and bring everything we need outside to cook when the weather is nice.



The driver side is similarly equipped but holds extra bedding for colder weather, a small electric heater for when we have shore power, and the shower curtain and wand in the small section to the very back.
 

chet6.7

Explorer
Thank you for the pictures and the measurements.
Your mileage is pretty good,I get 15 MPG at 74 MPH,I have less drag and weight,but I am running mud tires,I know it has an effect on MPG.
Keep the pictures of that great rig coming.
 

redthies

Renaissance Redneck
I hit the scales today. The truck was full tanks, (fuel, DEF, water, and propane) Tool boxes and recovery gear all in place, and an extra 33" spare tire tucked up underneath for the trailer that follows us around. All in it came to 11,340 lbs, with 5320 front and 6020 back. A little on the heavy side but not too bad for a max. load condition. With the trailer in tow I have options to shift some of the heavier tools and recovery gear off the truck.
I like your set up and know I'm going to sound like the weight police here, but I've got to ask... Since you are 1,340 lbs over legal max weight (were you and the wife in the truck?), would you in hindsight have gone with a 3500? Did you pick the 2500 for the rear coils? I would guess you could possibly get better articulation out of the 2500s rear suspension than I get out of my 3500.

I needed the GVW of the 3500 for my previous camper. The new one is 2600. I flat tow a mildly built CJ7.

 
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WeeJeep2

Adventurer
I like your set up and know I'm going to sound like the weight police here, but I've got to ask... Since you are 1,340 lbs over legal max weight (were you and the wife in the truck?), would you in hindsight have gone with a 3500? Did you pick the 2500 for the rear coils? I would guess you could possibly get better articulation out of the 2500s rear suspension than I get out of my 3500.
I went with the 2500 with the coil suspension for articulation and ride comfort. If I consider my Jeep for comparison it has a usable load capacity of 750 lbs. Add two people at 350 lbs total and that leaves 400 lbs. Stick 100 lbs of winch and bumper on the front and some upsized tires and hang a high lift on the back and it is basically at capacity. I've never weighed it and probably won't. I know it's heavy too when I roll out loaded, just like most every other rig that is loaded up for a multi-day, multi-person adventure and I drive accordingly. It has 10 years of long trips with no issues. If I'm 10 to 15% over GVWR at the start, fully loaded I don't worry about it too much.
 

WeeJeep2

Adventurer
The truck made its second road trip adventure over Thanksgiving. The first trip was 10 days up to Overland Expo East in Ashville, NC. The second trip looped a little over 4000 miles up the east coast and back down the middle of the country. Map of the two trips:

We made New Orleans the first day and stayed with friends there. It was an easy run to Pensacola, FL the next day. We were headed out to:

We set up camp in the early afternoon

As we did the Blue Angels were doing a practice show that took them pretty much over us on some passes. It’s hard to shoot them through the trees when they are moving fast.

We had plenty of time to stroll the beach to see the locals

A few lone tourists

And the fort the park is named after

We took a couple of shots of the truck along the beach before we departed.



From there we headed north into the dry southeast, passing through many areas of smoke. We found a nice campground in Georgia. We didn’t need to worry about getting the smoky smell of the campfire on our clothes since we had been driving in smoke most of the day.

It was on to Myrtle Beach from there to stay with friends for a couple of nights. We did a late day hike in a park north of them and caught a nice sunset,

The longs shadows of the setting sun,

And the super-moon coming up through the forest.

We made one more stop to see a friend in Virginia and then pushed on to PA. My brother lives there and we have a family farmstead next door. That just means a place to go do more chores, but it is big enough that you can recruit more folks to help if you feed them Thanksgiving dinner.
 

WeeJeep2

Adventurer
The truck was put to work on the firewood cutting crew. It was chief puller to keep the trees headed into the open areas instead of heading down the hill into the woods.

The winch line and 150 ft. of heavy (18,000 lb) rope kept the truck well back from the tree.

There would be bad consequences if something this big lands on the truck.


We had an assembly of people and equipment to get the wood cut up and hauled out to be transported back.

The back hoe makes easy work of pulling logs out of the briars.

And loading sections onto the trailer.

Back at the farm the wood pile was getting rather large.

Splitting was the next task up. Turn a few teenage boys loose with a splitter and happens pretty fast.

The scraps all needed to be burned.

After a big meal everyone likes to hang around the fire once it has subsided to a reasonable size.

That was the first of four trees on the project list. The rest took a redirect pull with a snatch block to get the trees into the open.
Puller in position.

Rigging in position.

Cutter doing his thing.

Another tree down.

We spent two weeks in PA. Had two Thanksgiving dinners, two sets of leftovers and got to see plenty of family during our stay.
On the return trip we passed through Cleveland and stayed with a friend there. Then it was on to Springfield, IL to stay with more friends. We did a layover day there to tour some the Lincoln historical sights of which there are many. You can even take your photo with the Lincoln family if you are so inclined.

Last stop on the tour was Devil’s Den state park in Arkansas. We spent two nights there and got in some hiking and mountain biking while there.

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Finally we made the last section of the run home, in the rain. At least it washed all the bugs off the front of the camper. It was actually warm enough for bugs while running along the Gulf Coast. We harvested plenty on the white front section of the camper. We got to see snow during our stay up in PA, but it doesn’t take the bugs off.
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We’re very pleased with how the truck handles the highway miles. It’s smooth and just cruises along with traffic. Having made the trip previously in a Wrangler with a lift and 33’s this was quite a bit quicker, more comfortable, and better on the fuel too.
 

Redline

Likes to Drive and Ride
I went with the 2500 with the coil suspension for articulation and ride comfort. If I consider my Jeep for comparison it has a usable load capacity of 750 lbs. Add two people at 350 lbs total and that leaves 400 lbs. Stick 100 lbs of winch and bumper on the front and some upsized tires and hang a high lift on the back and it is basically at capacity. I've never weighed it and probably won't. I know it's heavy too when I roll out loaded, just like most every other rig that is loaded up for a multi-day, multi-person adventure and I drive accordingly. It has 10 years of long trips with no issues. If I'm 10 to 15% over GVWR at the start, fully loaded I don't worry about it too much.
In support of your working-well for you 2500... I too have a very loaded 2500, a 2014, operated mostly at the GVWR, or above. If I would have ordered my new Ram, as I have most prior trucks, I would have picked a 3500. But the price with rebates for my truck was ridiculously low, and when such deals come around you can take what is available, or pay much more, and the deal was on this 2500. It does the job. Well! That said, I'd likely have no complaints using a 3500 in the same manner. There are (at least theoretical) advantages to both rear suspensions.

Three cheers for a good thread. :)
 
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benwrightpsu

New member
Twins

I think you've got great taste ;-) Just picked up my 2017 Ram 3500 with the Cummins and Aisin transmission. Next up is either an AEV or ARB bumber and winch, or looking into ARB lockers. Anyway, nice build and I was encouraged to find someone doing something similar. IMG_20161224_141719.jpg
 
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