Intro and title, “motobox that my wife would camp in”

Converting Cargo Trailers into TTTs

Intro and title, “motobox that my wife would camp in”

Postby BigDave_185 » Thu Nov 02, 2017 10:55 am

I am not into this teardrop trailer build but.... I am in love with this idea of turning my enclosed trailer into the greatest toy hauler That meets me and families needs.

We are a motocross Family, camping family and big into Boy Scouts. I have camped in massive motorhomes awesome toy haulers, heated tents and under the stars on camp ground tables. I am happy to be making something new and of high quality that is something my family can continue to enjoy for many years.

I have four kids, 18 girl, 10 boy, twin 2yr boys, married for a bunch of years.

I have a 24 foot element look, with a 36 inch man door, and a fold down door. 5k axles.

Looking to insulate, add some Murphy beds of some sort and than water and electrical. We will see where else it goes

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Re: Intro and title, “motobox that my wife would camp in”

Postby BigDave_185 » Thu Nov 02, 2017 10:56 am

My trailer is currently on hold, we sold the house, loaded all belongings into and crashed the grandmas party house. It’s loaded 100% front to back, bottom to top with the home belongings. New home construction to start in a few months.

Like you I am waiting to clean her out and do all the awesome things I have read about.

Doing some $ figuring

Question,

What insulation do most people install on the roof and walls. Ceiling in my trailer has a slight curve/bow
Suggestion?

2nd
I have enough roof space for 5 solar panels but my solar source says three, four, six not five. He can get me about $0.80 a watt. And about $6k to invest in framing, panels, inverter, and batteries.

Why would I invest 6k in solar when I can get a generator for lots less ?


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Re: Intro and title, “motobox that my wife would camp in”

Postby CoventryKid » Thu Nov 02, 2017 5:01 pm

Welcome BigDave:
What insulation do most people install on the roof and walls. Ceiling in my trailer has a slight curve/bow
Suggestion?

On the walls, I installed 1" rigid insulation between the ribs of my trailer. I added strips of 5/8" plywood to each rib, then I added 1/2" rigid insulation between the plywood strips. I foil taped all the seams. I re-attached the 3/8" interior plywood to the plywood strips creating a thermal break - no screws into the cold metal ribs.

On the ceiling I installed 1" rigid insulation, but I installed the plywood strips lengthways. I used the gap as a "chase" for 12v/110v wiring.

My NEO is a round top, so I installed some regular batt insulation in the curved area, then cut pieces of rigid insulation and wedged them into place on an angle.

You can see my build pictures in the link below.

Hope this helps.
Doug
Vancouver Island, BC

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GMC Savana Explorer Limited SE hightop conversion van
NEO NAVR 7x16 V-nose aluminum trailer now a comfortable travel trailer

Build: http://www.tusker-international.com/1-trlr-build.html
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Re: Intro and title, “motobox that my wife would camp in”

Postby BigDave_185 » Thu Nov 02, 2017 7:02 pm

CoventryKid wrote:Welcome BigDave:
What insulation do most people install on the roof and walls. Ceiling in my trailer has a slight curve/bow
Suggestion?

On the walls, I installed 1" rigid insulation between the ribs of my trailer. I added strips of 5/8" plywood to each rib, then I added 1/2" rigid insulation between the plywood strips. I foil taped all the seams. I re-attached the 3/8" interior plywood to the plywood strips creating a thermal break - no screws into the cold metal ribs.

On the ceiling I installed 1" rigid insulation, but I installed the plywood strips lengthways. I used the gap as a "chase" for 12v/110v wiring.

My NEO is a round top, so I installed some regular batt insulation in the curved area, then cut pieces of rigid insulation and wedged them into place on an angle.

You can see my build pictures in the link below.

Hope this helps.


No link below, I followed to your personal page where you have a few photos of the insulation and other various additions.

Do you have more detailed photos of your overhead cabinets? Those look fantastic and the wood work is nice as well.




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Re: Intro and title, “motobox that my wife would camp in”

Postby CoventryKid » Thu Nov 02, 2017 10:08 pm

BigDave:

Here is link: http://www.tusker-international.com/1-trlr-build.html

As far as upper cabinets are concerned, I don't have any pictures, but they are basic 1/2" plywood - cut the bottom to fit between the end walls 12" deep, then screwed upright pieces (12" x 12") at each end and behind where the doors meet, so basically 5 vertical pieces, then a wide "strap" across the top to tie it together. Screwed into end walls and ceiling.

As far the doors are concerned, I took the easy way out - 5/8" MDF. Doors are hinged at the ceiling so they open up (with gas struts to hold them open) and I cut them longer so the overhang hides the 3 LED puck lights mounted underneath each bank of cabinets.

Just let me know if the above needs further clarification - only too happy to help!

Hope this helps.
Doug
Vancouver Island, BC

Image
GMC Savana Explorer Limited SE hightop conversion van
NEO NAVR 7x16 V-nose aluminum trailer now a comfortable travel trailer

Build: http://www.tusker-international.com/1-trlr-build.html
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Re: Intro and title, “motobox that my wife would camp in”

Postby BigDave_185 » Fri Nov 03, 2017 7:12 am

From this photo
Image

It appears that you filled in between the vertical supports with foam, than added maybe 3x1 wood sticks, than more insulation between those? Than taped your seams, ply over the top to cover. So most area covered with 2 inches of pink insulating styrofoam?


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Re: Intro and title, “motobox that my wife would camp in”

Postby CoventryKid » Fri Nov 03, 2017 9:58 am

BigDave:

On the walls, I installed 1" rigid insulation between the ribs of my trailer. I added strips of 5/8" plywood to each rib, then I added 1/2" rigid insulation between the plywood strips. I foil taped all the seams. I re-attached the 3/8" interior plywood to the plywood strips creating a thermal break - no screws into the cold metal ribs.

Yes, as above.
Doug
Vancouver Island, BC

Image
GMC Savana Explorer Limited SE hightop conversion van
NEO NAVR 7x16 V-nose aluminum trailer now a comfortable travel trailer

Build: http://www.tusker-international.com/1-trlr-build.html
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Intro and title, “motobox that my wife would camp in”

Postby BigDave_185 » Wed Nov 08, 2017 9:44 am

As I have been scrolling other peoples builds I have noted lots of people use donor trailers? Anyone see issues with the idea of buying a pop tent trailer, harvest the heat unit, fridge and water tanks?


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Re: Intro and title, “motobox that my wife would camp in”

Postby Socal Tom » Wed Nov 08, 2017 9:57 am

BigDave_185 wrote:
2nd
I have enough roof space for 5 solar panels but my solar source says three, four, six not five. He can get me about $0.80 a watt. And about $6k to invest in framing, panels, inverter, and batteries.

Why would I invest 6k in solar when I can get a generator for lots less ?


If you are taking it to motocross events, I don't think you will get many complaints about a generator, and you will be hauling fuel anyhow. Look into the inverter/generators they are really quiet and much more fuel efficient. I still like solar for battery charging, but I wouldn't put 6K into it. If you are using so much power that you need that many panels, some adjustments to your usage would make more sense.

I like the idea of a donor pop-up, but you have to be careful or you will be buying a junk pile. The old school fridges are propane powered and they aren't very efficient on electricity and you would be better off with one of the new 12V compressor models. A water heater would be nice, but an old one might just rust through shortly. The stove would probably be ok, test the furnace before you buy it. They are loud and suck up a lot of power.
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Re: Intro and title, “motobox that my wife would camp in”

Postby BigDave_185 » Wed Nov 08, 2017 10:33 am

Tom,
Thanks for the input.

I hadn’t given much thought to age or parts. I assume plastic water tanks get brittle, dirty and gross, water heaters rust out. I think I will scrap he idea unless I can find a newer trailer for a smoking good deal


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Re: Intro and title, “motobox that my wife would camp in”

Postby McDave » Wed Nov 08, 2017 1:59 pm

The deals are out there. Campers are totalled all the time, water damage, wrecks etc.. Also people upgrade equipment so brand new stuff can be had at a discount. Ebay is a good source. You can even have their search engine? look for you and notify when "x" item(s) are for sale. I scored a never used Norcold RV fridge 12v/120v from a new boat for 170.00 shipped, and a new propane catalytic heater for 80.00 and many other items at half price or so. Caveat Emptor of course. If you are on a budget, (who isn't?) the time spent hunting deals is just like money in the bank. If money is no object why wouldn't you just buy a fully loaded custom rig and just write the check? Well, some of us crazy people want to build it ourselves, money aside. But "getting the deal" is part of the fun/challenge, I think.
Also repurposing things like cabinets, or barn wood, hardware etc. helps to justify my hoarding issue. I also just like the old stuff. I pulled a major portion of my materials out of the "scrap" pile of stuff leftover from home remodels etc. Stuff like counter tops and flooring can be found as remnants or closeouts since you don't need a lot for a trailer. My sink countertop is a piece of granite left over from kitchen remodel. I have 125 yr old cabinet doors and a dutch door on the shower/bathroom and the door from the "ice room" is now a pocket door that closes the cargo area off from the galley when the Harley is onboard. I just couldn't throw that stuff away and have had it in storage for 20+ yrs till I found a use for it. Just my style I guess. But it is one of a kind and not plastic/R.O.C. junk.

McDave

PS I am looking to get a solar system soon. I have a genny and 100ah battery and charge from TV, but I have learned that solar allows you recharge when you are not there and always have a full battery bank without the noise maker. With an inverter you can also have 120v silently. Still need a genny for Air Cond. but only when I am there and just a hour or so.
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Re: Intro and title, “motobox that my wife would camp in”

Postby Socal Tom » Wed Nov 08, 2017 6:56 pm

McDave wrote:
McDave

PS I am looking to get a solar system soon. I have a genny and 100ah battery and charge from TV, but I have learned that solar allows you recharge when you are not there and always have a full battery bank without the noise maker. With an inverter you can also have 120v silently. Still need a genny for Air Cond. but only when I am there and just a hour or so.


A solar system to keep the batteries charged can make sense. Surprisingly Walmart.com has some good prices on solar stuff. I've just assembled a small system. I've got 2 50 watt panels ( so I can fold them together) that were about $65 each, and a 20$ solar charge controller. On a sunny day one 50W panel kept my battery charged last trip. A second one will give me a safety margin for when the clouds come out, or I don't watch the angle of the panel of the sun as well. For lights, a 12V fridge and charging phones, this is plenty. I don't know what I would do with $6K worth of solar.
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Re: Intro and title, “motobox that my wife would camp in”

Postby BigDave_185 » Wed Nov 08, 2017 10:56 pm

Socal Tom wrote:
BigDave_185 wrote:

I like the idea of a donor pop-up, but you have to be careful or you will be buying a junk pile. The old school fridges are propane powered and they aren't very efficient on electricity and you would be better off with one of the new 12V compressor models. A water heater would be nice, but an old one might just rust through shortly. The stove would probably be ok, test the furnace before you buy it. They are loud and suck up a lot of power.
Tom


About the fridge idea, I don’t see a issue with using propane for my fridge. Most lengthy time I expect to be out is 4 days maybe.
But I am not opposed to a full on fridge with a freezer, cost is an issue as mcDave says but I don’t like sacrificing quality either. I am mostly concerned with the how to. Plumbing and wiring and so on, I can frame stuff in, welding is easy enough, Electrical wiring is lost on me.


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Re: Intro and title, “motobox that my wife would camp in”

Postby BigDave_185 » Wed Nov 08, 2017 11:02 pm

I finally got my front jack replaced this past week

The cheap 3ton tongue jack broke four months ago. I loaded this trailer so full it squashed my 3/4 ton 6 inch lifted truck so low. I maxed out the jack to get it off the ball. Stripped the gears because of the weight and had to pull the hitch pin and move the truck forward to get it off.

Now I have a nice new one welded on

I cut out a plate of steel drilled two 1 inch holes in the center, spot welded them to the back of my jack, than welded the sides to my jack than the plate to the frame of my trailer. Premiered now
Image

I shouldn’t strip the gears out in this

It has an adjustable drop down foot plus the side crank is easier to use


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Re: Intro and title, “motobox that my wife would camp in”

Postby McDave » Thu Nov 09, 2017 12:55 am

Looks pretty good BigDave. It can be challenging to control distortion when working with that kind of heat. The spot (plug)welds you used on the jack could have been handy on the plate to frame as well. But that stitching should be plenty strong, stronger than the frame or jack I'd guess. You're pretty handy with a stick. A valuable skill to have for sure.
Nice job.

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