The TARDIS - A Four Wheel Camper Build

SLO_F-250

Explorer
Well, I received the FastGuns and I am going to return them.

They are a lot larger than I had expected, and I think it would be mighty hard (impossible) to work with them inside the space available. They are also heavy, weighing 8 pounds for the set. They were a good idea, just not going to work the way I had hoped.

Instead, I am ordering a new set of turnbuckles. I am going with a set of stainless steel turnbuckles with shackle (or jaw) ends. With the shackle ends, even if the turnbuckle dramatically loosens up the camper will still be attached to truck, although loosely. I am also ordering a set of jam nuts for the turnbuckles. Turnbuckles are here at McMaster-Carr.
I was wondering if they were going to fit in there! I think they are WAY over priced. $20 turnbuckles sure beats $400 fast guns. Thats ALOT of little things for the camper with money left over for BEER! :ylsmoke:

I added some Jamb nuts on my turnbuckels. They seem to work ok, but am probably going to add a lock washers because they still rattle loose at times. I have a stainless locking carabiner connecting to the camper eye bolt. It then connects to the closed loop end of the turn buckle. The other end of the turnbuckle is just a hook that goes eye bolt to the bed. I figured that if it comes loose it is less likely to unhook from the lower eyebolt than upper. Make sense? Ill try and get a pict up. :snorkel:
 

Overland Hadley

on a journey
I was wondering if they were going to fit in there! I think they are WAY over priced. $20 turnbuckles sure beats $400 fast guns. Thats ALOT of little things for the camper with money left over for BEER! :ylsmoke:

I added some Jamb nuts on my turnbuckels. They seem to work ok, but am probably going to add a lock washers because they still rattle loose at times. I have a stainless locking carabiner connecting to the camper eye bolt. It then connects to the closed loop end of the turn buckle. The other end of the turnbuckle is just a hook that goes eye bolt to the bed. I figured that if it comes loose it is less likely to unhook from the lower eyebolt than upper. Make sense? Ill try and get a pict up. :snorkel:
The Derringers were $80, ended up being less than the SS turnbuckles that I have on order. But I might decide to return those as well. Sometimes I definitely have a hard time leaving good enough alone, as I am always looking for a better solution.

When you get a chance post a picture of your turnbuckle setup.
 

Overland Hadley

on a journey
Only worked a ''half day'' (7 hours) today, so I had some time for the camper.



Finished the last roof rack bar. Now ready for the canoe or kayaks, or ski boxes.





The new struts came, so I installed them, complete with French SS twisted shackles. The shackles are captive pin, so they are easy to use.





Yes, the struts are also SS. This is from my last post.
Sometimes I definitely have a hard time leaving good enough alone, as I am always looking for a better solution.

Mounted the Rigid Industries Duallys. Not crazy about the wire location, but that is what I was given to work with. Just this afternoon I noted similar wiring on a friends super nice fishing boat, so I am sure it will be okay. Still need to finish sealing the hole where the wire comes out.






Thats all for now, I was happy to get some more work done!
(Sorry for the poor picture quality.)
 

SLO_F-250

Explorer
Dangit Overland, quit doing mods that get me thinking! You spend my $$ faster than I can! LOL! :sombrero:

Camper is looking great. I REALLY like the seamless roof. Quick question, why did you install the SS Shackles up top? Seems to be more expensive and move around rather than just doing the same bracket in both places. I know you have a reason. Also, on a scale of 1-10 how much do they help and were they worth the money? I'm debating on doing the same so my girlfriend does not struggle so much when opening the front.

Thanks!
 

Overland Hadley

on a journey
Dangit Overland, quit doing mods that get me thinking! You spend my $$ faster than I can! LOL! :sombrero:
Sorry. :elkgrin:


Camper is looking great. I REALLY like the seamless roof.
Thank you.

I also like the seamless roof.


Quick question, why did you install the SS Shackles up top? Seems to be more expensive and move around rather than just doing the same bracket in both places. I know you have a reason. Also, on a scale of 1-10 how much do they help and were they worth the money? I'm debating on doing the same so my girlfriend does not struggle so much when opening the front.

Thanks!
The lifting struts are 100% x10 worth it. I would never consider going back to no lifting struts, they are just so nice.

I have a pair of 75lb struts if you are interested. They are a little strong for my empty roof. I was going to return them to McMaster, but I could send them your way if you are interested. They are the standard black (not SS) struts. And I could point you in the right way to buy end fittings and brackets.

The shackle system at the top mount is there because I wanted a couple shackles to hang my candle lanterns from, so I went down that expensive road.
 

SLO_F-250

Explorer
snip...
Now why did you have to go and say it like that?

You've got me thinking, a dangerous process. ;)
Welcome to the club! haha :drool:

Overland Hadley said:
snip....
When you get a chance post a picture of your turnbuckle setup.
Here you go. Hope that explains thing better.


I only have one 120mile drive on the setup with the added jambnut. After checking them they seemed to not come loose. I will have to report back after some dirt roads etc. The turnbuckles are just off the shelf hardware store and same with the SS carabiner on top.

Overland Hadley said:
snip....
The lifting struts are 100% x10 worth it. I would never consider going back to no lifting struts, they are just so nice.
Cant beilive you had to say 100%x10! x9 and I might of passed, but x10!!! :ylsmoke:

Overland Hadley said:
snip....
I have a pair of 75lb struts if you are interested. They are a little strong for my empty roof. I was going to return them to McMaster, but I could send them your way if you are interested. They are the standard black (not SS) struts. And I could point you in the right way to buy end fittings and brackets.
Done, Ill send you a PM. Only thing is 75lbs each?. Seems pretty high. What are your slick SS ones? I read on WTW somewhere that 40lbs is what FWC install.

Overland Hadley said:
snip....
The shackle system at the top mount is there because I wanted a couple shackles to hang my candle lanterns from, so I went down that expensive road.
Ahhh Got ya, Yea Ill keep it simple.

Side note. I got a few of those LED candles. Cheap from like ride aid or something. They work GREAT in the camper. The girly loves them. Are you hanging real candles? If so you are MUCH less clumsy than I! :jumping:
 

eugene

Explorer
The Derringers were $80, ended up being less than the SS turnbuckles that I have on order. But I might decide to return those as well. Sometimes I definitely have a hard time leaving good enough alone, as I am always looking for a better solution.

When you get a chance post a picture of your turnbuckle setup.
Replace the nuts with wing nuts then drill a small hole in one of the wings to hook a small bungee cord to, that way the cord pulls on the wing nut preventing it from turning.
 

Overland Hadley

on a journey
Cant beilive you had to say 100%x10! x9 and I might of passed, but x10!!! :ylsmoke:
Yes, I think it is definitely 100% x10. :)


Done, Ill send you a PM. Only thing is 75lbs each?. Seems pretty high. What are your slick SS ones? I read on WTW somewhere that 40lbs is what FWC install.
Sent you a return PM.

75lbs works good if you have a heavy roof with solar etc.

But if you have an empty roof then 40 pounds seems to be what is needed. My SS struts are 50 lb and they are a bit stiff, although they are still new and only have a few compression cycles on them. I did notice that the struts do seem to soften up with a little use. I might also be adding a set or two of MaxTrax to the roof and then I will want the added lifting strength of the 50lb'ers.
 

Overland Hadley

on a journey
Are you hanging real candles? If so you are MUCH less clumsy than I!
Candle lanterns, see below.


....
Then I remembered the three candle lanterns I bought for a trip in the pacific north west. There was something warm and comforting about sitting around a couple of candles, especially in the never ending rain. Sure, they can be a bit of a pain, but it's something I do not mind dealing with.

I have the standard UCO Candle Lantern, (Link) customized with some of my stickers.
 

Overland Hadley

on a journey
12v Power

This is an interesting post from Doug Hackney. The last line is what struck me.



This system (electrical) follows this logic tree:

Is 220/110VAC required Y/N:

If you need 220/110VAC, then you'll probably need a generator.

It is very, very important to use a generator that outputs a pure sine wave.

If your sustained 220/110VAC needs are very, very small amperage loads, then you may be able to get by with an inverter (converts 12/24 VDC to AC). Again, it is critical to use one that outputs a pure sine wave.

If you are using an inverter, then you'll need enough amp hour capacity in deep-cycle batteries to handle the amperage draw. The amp-hour capacity of the batteries needs to be at least twice your anticipated total amperage draw between recharge cycles.

For all 12/24VDC loads (12/24VDC equipment + inverter), your vehicle's alternator(s) + solar panel(s) + wind generator(s) must be sufficient to recharge the batteries.

It is optimum to use only 12/24VDC equipment. Most laptops, cameras, radios, etc. can be used with a 12/24VDC charger/power source.



When I was planning my electrical system I decided that if I could not run it on 12v then it would not have a place in my lightweight camper. Looks like that idea had some merit.


The Gen2 Tacoma does have the AC outlet in the bed, and I modified it so I can access it with the camper mounted, but I have never used it and I do not have any plans to use it.
 
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