2013 Mirage XPO 6x12- Mt Air Express

Converting Cargo Trailers into TTTs

Re: 2013 Mirage XPO 6x12- Mt Air Express

Postby OverTheTopCargoTrailer » Tue Sep 10, 2013 11:48 am

My 2 cents worth - get one of those little 5,000 btu propane burners for $50 to heat your coffee water.
It only takes 2-3 minutes on some




http://www.campsaver.com/compact-foldable-stove?gclid=COrenLumwbkCFaU9QgodeCkAIA
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Re: 2013 Mirage XPO 6x12- Mt Air Express

Postby Rainier70 » Tue Sep 10, 2013 1:48 pm

I had thought to not show the additions I had made to my trailer until I had a chance to do the final "nice" install. Much of this is somewhat temporary or partially finished in order to use the trailer immediately. I have been camping off and on in it since May, and I will probably continue to do so until sometime in Oct. After that I can get some more finish work in on it.

Here is my temporary mount for my computer exhaust fan.

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I purchased an Antec Big Boy 200 computer fan. http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000V6 ... UTF8&psc=1

I love this fan! I put a single pole single throw on/off switch on it, and it comes with a three speed switch. It is extremely quiet. You can barely hear it on high, but it exhausts the hot air out of the trailer in less than 15 minutes. On low I have to look at it to see if it is on. This is definitely a thumbs up purchase for me. :thumbsup:
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Re: 2013 Mirage XPO 6x12- Mt Air Express

Postby MtnDon » Tue Sep 10, 2013 1:51 pm

Any kind of heating that is done with battery power, through an inverter or directly with DC, is not too practical, IMO. Resistance heating like that uses up a lot of battery capacity in a hurry. That said we do use an electric toaster in our off grid cabin. But we have 12 golf cart batteries in a series-parallel 24 volt bank of batteries.
Our 6x12 deep vee nose cargo trailer camper conversion... viewtopic.php?f=42&t=58336

We have a small off grid cabin we built ourselves in the NM mountains; small PV solar system; 624 watts PV, Outback CC & inverter/charger ... http://countryplans.com/smf/index.php?topic=2335.0
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Re: 2013 Mirage XPO 6x12- Mt Air Express

Postby Rainier70 » Tue Sep 10, 2013 2:01 pm

Since I travel on a lot of VERY bumpy dirty roads, anything that is not tied down or leashed is likely to end up on the floor. I got a Harbor Freight cargo net and stretched it across the ceiling. It is stretched with the narrow width across, and I have doubled the length over on itself. Down sleeping bags are best if not continually compressed, so they take up a bit of room in large bags. There are two bags in the cargo net that hold sleeping bags that are loosely packed in, and one bag (king sized pillow case) that holds two pillows. Traveling and storing them up in the cargo net keeps them out of the way, off of the floor, and clean.

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As you can see, my ceiling isn't finished yet. It is still just taped in insulation, with 1x2 security to hold it in if it shifts.
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Re: 2013 Mirage XPO 6x12- Mt Air Express

Postby Rainier70 » Tue Sep 10, 2013 2:16 pm

I replaced the incandescent bulbs in my interior lights with warm white leds. Two led pads in the smaller light and three in the larger light. The smaller one is okay, but the light with three pads seems to give off twice as much light. If you look directly at them you can see the wiring in the lights, but it really isn't glaringly noticeable.

The bright white leds would give a few more lumens, but I like the warm white.

Small light Wiring:
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Turned on:
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Larger light wiring

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Turned on:
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Re: 2013 Mirage XPO 6x12- Mt Air Express

Postby Rainier70 » Tue Sep 10, 2013 2:55 pm

Cabinets:

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I used an oak vanity that I cut a set of drawers off of one side and built a new side for it. It is probably a little heavier than I like, but I had it and it is now the size I want. The temporary counter top on it is just 1/2 in plywood painted with the floor paint. I will eventually put a laminate top and trim on it. It has child locks on all the the doors and drawers to keep things closed in transit.

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The upper cabinet is a Suncast Utility Wall Cabinet C1500K http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0002M ... UTF8&psc=1
It is a little larger than I wanted, but seems to be well built and sturdy. I drilled a hole up through bottom to the handle for a pin (screw) to drop into as a lock for when I am traveling.

Off to the left side is my broom hanger/towel hanger. It is currently holding my cleaning towels, as I was using them. The broom is under the towels. There is also a stash of water bottles along that side. They happened to fit there when I was packing up to go home, and that is where they have stayed. But probably not permanently.

Off on the right side you can see my shower curtain, shower pan, trash can, some extra drinking water, and my Coleman on Demand Water Heater. The shower pan holds it all in place when traveling. I hope to have this area replaced with my shower-cabinet sometime this winter.
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Re: 2013 Mirage XPO 6x12- Mt Air Express

Postby Rainier70 » Tue Sep 10, 2013 3:12 pm

Floor and bed up:

This is the floor with my junk out and the bed pulled up out of the way:

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Floor:
I used Rust-Oleum's 1 part epoxy floor paint over a coat of primer. I used it because it was a low odor acrylic. It did not stick well over the primer. That was my fault. At first the primer seemed harder than the floor paint. The floor scratched fairly easily at first, so I have several places to touch up. After about a month or so the floor got quite a bit harder and seems to be wearing well now. The darker area on the seams that you can see is acrylic sealant. Even though the factory sealed the seams on the bottom with a layer of sealant on the cross bracing etc, it wasn't sealed well enough. It was leaking dust inside. So I sealed it again both underneath and over the seams inside. No more dust, but I need to put a coat of paint over it when I do my touchups.

They really need to get more imaginative about their color choices in floor paint. Battleship grey is ok, but it is not my first choice for floor color.
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Re: 2013 Mirage XPO 6x12- Mt Air Express

Postby Rainier70 » Tue Sep 10, 2013 4:01 pm

The many moods of my bed!

I did my bed in 4-5 sections to allow for versatile arrangement of storage and for how many are camping . Being split allows easy access to the tubs and things I have under the bed. I always have the back two sections down when I camp because I have a bunch of my junk under it. Including a float tube, electric trolling motor, fins, motor mount, waders and so on ... you get the idea. My toys!! -- I have too many toys..... :o

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Actually I usually have three sections down, the back two and the right side. That allows me lots of storage, a twin sized bed, and a seat at the Ikea folding table that is on the end there.

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The left front side of the bed is a double fold section. Here it is folded up. There is a hook and eye on the left side. I also usually have a strap on it.

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Here with center open:

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And with the plus size Queen bed fully out.

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I do have the mattress for this cut into sections, but I haven't had a chance to sew the covers for them yet. This is what it looks like with my temporary twin sheet covers.

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Here it is with storage strapped in and ready to go. The vinyl blue checked table cloth protects the back section of the bed from any dust infiltration from the back doors. There is very little, but sometime there will be some. So it is easy to shake out, and the table cloth gets used on my outside table also.

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My outside/inside table is a 2 ft by 4 ft light one from Costco. It is adjustable in height and very handy both camping and in the house when lots of grand kids come at once.

It rides stored in the left side fold up section.

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There are lots of ways to use the table inside also.

With more room in the front.

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With the left side down

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And if I have lots of grandkids with etc

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It is harder to get into this one, but with the table out a bit your legs swing in easily.

When it is just me, I use the Ikea fold down table, and only use the other one outside if I need it for cooking etc.


I have a lot to do yet, but it is comfortable for me to camp in as it is until I get to the details. A little color in curtains and cushions etc will be nice to look forward to.
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Re: 2013 Mirage XPO 6x12- Mt Air Express

Postby Rainier70 » Tue Sep 10, 2013 5:06 pm

I also got around to mounting my fire extinguisher. The light on the right is an Ikea clip on led light. It is nice for when a little more concentrated light is needed. I use it for fly tying.

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At last some color!! Nothing like fire extinguisher red!!! :o :lol:

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Re: 2013 Mirage XPO 6x12- Mt Air Express

Postby Rainier70 » Sun Oct 20, 2013 9:01 am

Here are two quick Paint sketches of my expanding bathroom idea. Hope it helps.

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Re: 2013 Mirage XPO 6x12- Mt Air Express

Postby Rainier70 » Thu Oct 24, 2013 2:55 pm

It's getting colder, and it was time I addressed the heat issue.

I would have loved to install a Dickinson Marine 9000 propane heater (http://dickinsonmarine.com/propane.php) as BC Dave and GoneFishin have done, but it just wasn't to be right now. I can't use electric because I boondock camp 100% of the time. I needed a VENTED propane heater or furnace as I can't use the catalytic and Mr Heater types. The propane furnaces are nice and I almost got one, but they need a lot of permanent room for installation, would be hard to remove for using the CT to haul things, and they take a lot of power to run the fan. I finally decided to give the Nu-Way Model 2000 Propane stove a try. http://www.nuwaystove.com/model2000.php

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It is light at 10lbs. Relatively small at 9 X 7 X 15. And low enough priced that I was willing to try it without seeing it in person. If I didn't like it or found that it wouldn't work for me I could easily sell. I am happy to say that it works great!

I currently have it set up as completely removable. I will probably mount it in place in the near future. Mounting it in place will involve about 2 screws for the stove and a couple for a pipe support. I will continue to use the deck plate cover and keep the outside pipe vent removable. I travel on very dusty roads and like to keep my CT as sealed as possible.

I placed it by the side door and protected the wall with an aluminum shield.

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For now the propane hose comes in a small deck plate on the floor. The same deck plate can be used for an AC extension cord also when I am at home.

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It uses a 3 inch vent pipe with a 3" cast iron damper. The damper really improves the heat retention in the lower pipe.

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The stove is listed at 12,000 BTUs, and it can really put out the heat quickly. I don't need nearly that much. The flame is completely adjustable from high to very low. Here is a picture of the flame when the control is about medium.

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And at low. Sorry this picture is blurry.

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Here is a shot of the exterior vent in place.

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And with the vent removed.

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And the floor deck plate closed

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I do have a carbon monoxide detector, but haven't had any issues so far. Before I installed it we set up the stove and the pipe in our garage and ran it on high for quite awhile to burn off fumes etc.

So far I have used it for two nights at about 20 degrees. I ran it on low with the roof vent open, and it kept the CT at a very comfortable temperature. I have also used it a couple of times with an adapter, regulator, and a 1lb propane bottle. It worked well, but did ice up the bottle after a while.
Last edited by Rainier70 on Thu Oct 24, 2013 4:19 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: 2013 Mirage XPO 6x12- Mt Air Express

Postby revorunner » Thu Oct 24, 2013 3:48 pm

Very nice install. thanks for sharing! :thumbsup:
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Re: 2013 Mirage XPO 6x12- Mt Air Express

Postby Shadow Catcher » Thu Oct 24, 2013 6:15 pm

I find interesting the way folks handle the challenges. Which brings up my question. Would you not be ahead by asking that interior plywood not be attached just loaded in or left off entirely? A) you would see the bones, B) you would not have to deal with screwball fasteners, C) they would have to do the job of paint etc, of the ribs.
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Re: 2013 Mirage XPO 6x12- Mt Air Express

Postby tnriverluver » Thu Oct 24, 2013 6:33 pm

You are probably going to be a little too warm. I can heat my 7X14 with a small 1500 watt ceramic heater on low and it will keep it a toasty 75 degrees when in the upper 20's outside. Never even have to turn it on high unless I need to warm it up quickly.
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Re: 2013 Mirage XPO 6x12- Mt Air Express

Postby hankaye » Thu Oct 24, 2013 8:30 pm

Rainier70, Howdy;

Looks like you could even perc. a pot of coffee on the flat top of the stove. :thumbsup:

How did you insulate the hole for the chimney? As short length of tri-wall for the thimble?
3" is what is used for Gas fired hot water heaters isn't it... should be plenty of parts available
for building a chimney... :thinking:

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