Go big or go home:

MTVR

Well-known member
Have fun with it and keep posting your project.
Have you done some layouts of the inside of the container ?


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Working on it.

The wife and I are trying to come into agreement regarding the length of the container. I'd like to just use a standard 20-foot container, but she wants to use one that has been cut down and rewelded to a shorter length, around 14 feet (the bed is 14 feet long).
 

MTVR

Well-known member
I am sincerely happy for you getting the rig that you wanted! The point i was trying to make (and obviously not doing a very good job of it) was that if you were planning exploring DEEP in the outback (like in many parts of Baja) and staying "off the grid" for a month plus at a time... You would be better off with a lighter rig that had low range working gears. Preferably low low ones like on Unimogs. Yes, horsepower and torque are wonderful things until you are really stuck... Then it just starts to break things! A calm steady right foot and a really low gear (with low tire pressure and a shovel) if far more likely to get you out of trouble.

And when it doesn't... It's time to go into the hidden vault and pull out the "tractor fund"! From what I've read on this thread sounds like you are mostly going to explore in the USA where there is a good likelihood that you will have Cell service, which is FAR more convenient then down in Baja where there are stretches of hundreds of miles between service and the only way to get help is to walk to a main road and hitchhike to the nearest tractor the be ready to pay the tractors owner hundreds/ or thousands of $$$ to bail you out of trouble. Trust me! I am speaking from experience!

My truck Casa Azul weighs 16,800 dry and usually under 20K wet (too big to get pulled out by a F350) and I keep my tractor fund at about $2800. Enough for a greedy backhoe owner. You will probably need a D8 ($15K ~ $20K) and... Lets not forget the low-boy to get the tractor to your truck!

Best of luck and fun with your new rig.
Well, I may have misunderstood you.

We have a 58:1 crawl ratio, not counting the torque multiplication offered by the automatic transmission's torque converter, which should be good for off road. I also have CTIS that can air the tires WAY down (and bead locks, so that I don't knock the tires off the wheels).

The horsepower and torque is nice on the road, but I have no plans of using it to break stuff off road.

And yes, we're planning on being in the U.S.- we've already done our world travels.
 

1000arms

Well-known member
... The wife and I are trying to come into agreement regarding the length of the container. I'd like to just use a standard 20-foot container, but she wants to use one that has been cut down and rewelded to a shorter length, around 14 feet (the bed is 14 feet long).
Get a standard 20' container and measure out 14'. Use cardboard boxes to build a full-size model of the interior. She might want to expand to 20'. :)

20' containers are common, easy to replace, a lot less work than cutting a 20' container down to 14', and have approximately 50% more floor space than 14'.
 

nathane

Active member
We are putting a 4.2m (13') box on our mog, should come in at 6500kg fully loaded and be able to access lots of places a beast like this won't, but we have had to accept lots of living space compromises to get this capability.

For your project it feels like overkill to have such a massive truck for such a tiny box, kind of like putting a drag racing engine in a mini to use for shopping trips. Given how your chassis has the capacity for so much more, and the weight and size means you are only really going to relatively developed places why not put something bigger that doesn't require so much compromise from a comfort perspective?

Max out the beast!
 

nathane

Active member
It's funny, I just looked up the empty weight for a 20' container - pretty much the same as our fully built living box including all equipment and fluids (which are 500kg on their own)!
 

Joaquin Suave

Active member
If it were me... I'd start with an aluminum framed and composite sided cab-over Uhaul box. If you do a search here on ExPo, you will find several rigs that were REALLY cleverly fabricated!

Shipping cans are built to be stacked (loaded) 9 high, you just don't need that kind of weight/ structure.
 

Recommended books for Overlanding

dreadlocks

Well-known member
yeah but how hard is all that extra length off the back going to make traversing switchbacks or other hairpin turns..and then there's leverage, everything behind the rear axle gonna need to be really well built and secured or its gonna go flying like the kids who sit in the very back of the bus.
 

nathane

Active member
Surely looking at the pictures on page 1, if the cab is 12' high the existing bed must be well over 13' long?
 

nathane

Active member
Wow, I hadn't realised it was that short. I guess I'm surprised it's pretty much exactly the same as ours:

IMG_3941.JPG
 

MTVR

Well-known member
Very cool, nathane. I see the torsion-free subframe, the pass-through, and the tall roof. We looked for a U2150L/38 or a U2450L/38 to import, but we were not successful.

And we never would have gotten 425 horsepower, 1,550 pound-feet of torque, a 7-speed automatic transmission, ABS, and traction control in any Unimog old enough to legally import (25 years old).
 

nathane

Active member
Very cool, nathane. I see the torsion-free subframe, the pass-through, and the tall roof. We looked for a U2150L/38 or a U2450L/38 to import, but we were not successful.

And we never would have gotten 425 horsepower, 1,550 pound-feet of torque, a 7-speed automatic transmission, ABS, and traction control in any Unimog old enough to legally import (25 years old).
No, we are some way off that with this 2000 u1550 being one of the last analogue engines and gearboxes. We have 290bhp and 600ish torques with an updated injection system but that's a way off yours. No tc or abs obviously but neither did my Ariel atom so I can live with that 😊.

I do think yours is going to be an awesome monster of a truck, really looking forward to seeing the build. It was also much cheaper than a mog by the way at the outset.
 

MTVR

Well-known member
Well, the tire codes indicate that these are the original tires, from the Summer of 2007. The best price I can find on six unused tires (2014 or newer date codes) is about $3,000. Not insurmountable, but I had hoped that the tires it came with would have been newer. Oh well- we knew that this was one of the risks when we decided to bid on this truck...
 
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