My Epiphany - Sanding - Sanding - Sanding

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Postby parnold » Tue Jan 03, 2012 12:03 am

Now that I have the trailer dimensions, and axle placement, I worked on my design. I've made a couple changes. The A/C unit is inside the door to the right. I have added a furnace, took out a shelf, put in a couch, made the bed full sized.

This design could actually sleep three people.

This change was mainly to accommodate the furnace. I don't even know if the furnace works. :lol:

Here it is..

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Postby Colemancooler » Tue Jan 03, 2012 2:45 am

make sure that the outdoor coil gets Plenty of air flow or it will ice up if you box it in too much
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Postby Blotto Bros » Tue Jan 03, 2012 7:50 pm

I like it, kinda retro. I will have to watch this build closely. :thumbsup:
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Postby parnold » Tue Jan 03, 2012 9:05 pm

I've come up with another concept drawing. This one has a closet. I managed to fit the heater, the A/C unit, a full sized mattress and still have a table with two seats. The seat closest to the door will have a porto john hidden underneath. In a pinch, the table can go down, and another bed magically appears.

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Postby S. Heisley » Tue Jan 03, 2012 9:18 pm

I like it, Paul. It looks good. :thumbsup: :applause:
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Postby parnold » Tue Jan 03, 2012 10:11 pm

Thank you Sharon!

And now the big reveal... the outside color scheme. I'm really running with the yellow stove I salvaged from the pop-up. I am very strongly considering a retro look inside and out, with yellow table and some retro looking fabric for the cushions.

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Postby bonnie » Wed Jan 04, 2012 7:48 am

Like that very much. The design is coming together, too. :)
Remember, the turtle won. :)
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Postby myoung » Wed Jan 04, 2012 8:16 am

parnold wrote:I've come up with another concept drawing. This one has a closet. I managed to fit the heater, the A/C unit, a full sized mattress and still have a table with two seats. The seat closest to the door will have a porto john hidden underneath. In a pinch, the table can go down, and another bed magically appears.

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Paul,

I liked your sliding bed better for a couple of reasons. First, the permanent full-sized bed (Queen-size I guess) takes up a lot of floor space during the day. Second, with a sliding or gaucho arrangement you could have a comfortable couch with one section of the half-bed as a back cushion. Third, you could have accessible storage on both sides beside the hanging locker and the heater when the bed is not extended. Fourth, the window would be more useful when seated on the rear couch; there isn't much reason for large windows in areas that are used primarily for sleeping.

To me the visual and actual feeling of space is important. As we get older and creakier slouching and bumping ones head against things gets old too. So, you might also consider reducing the radius of the upper front edge where you now plan to have seating.

Lastly, there isn't much aerodynamic gain from rounding either the front or rear bottom corners. By squaring them off, you construction will be easier and you'll gain more interior space for your sliding galley and for the inevitable stuff that tends to occupy the nether reaches of cabinets.

I guess the curved look is more aesthetically pleasing to most, but it does have limitations and compromises. I guess that's why this design process is so much fun and challenging.

Enjoy.
:)
Mike Young
build thread: viewtopic.php?t=40459
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Postby parnold » Wed Jan 04, 2012 9:59 am

Mike:

I also thought about the slide out function for the bed, and may change my mind yet, I still have several months before I can make sawdust as I am limited to working outdoors. I have to disagree with the window comment however. In the warmer months, when A/C isn't quite needed, having a window near the bed draws in a very comfortable breeze with the fantastic fan running. I often camp where there is no electricity, and my current tear has a window that draws air across my entire body. It's awesome.

In this design, the table can be put down to make an additional bed, so why not a couch also? It might require a pillow or two more than I had thought but that could be another nice feature.

I'll have to look at the actual measurements, but unless your 7' tall, I don't think headroom is going to be an issue. Sitting in the center of the cushion so eating is comfortable gives you about 3' 4" of headroom. My son who is 6' 2" when sitting erect measures 3' from bottom of butt to top of head. Again, that's sitting uncomfortable erect. I'll have to do a scale model to be certain, but I think it's going to be ok.

One other thought I had was making the table longer, so someone who was 7' tall could sit on top of the air conditioner. The table would have to be able to fold however to make it usable as a bed/couch still.
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Postby StPatron » Wed Jan 04, 2012 2:10 pm

Another good plan, Paul. And, I like your approach of taking actual measurements of your son in a sitting position, etc. That's the only way to know for sure if your design is workable or not. Allowing for 7-footers seems a bit of a stretch when we're playing a game of inches, but you are the only one who knows your needs and wants. Not me.

That being said, if you want the best camper then what you should build is a carbon copy of what I did!! :lol: :lol:

I'm in the convertible bed/gaucho/dinette camp. Multi-purpose "furniture" has numerous advantages and has always been incorporated in small campers for good reasons. Others object, claiming they don't want to fuss with converting each time. A fixed bed isn't only for sleeping. Will you, or someone else, be satisfied sitting on the bed edge for hours at a time or only short periods? Do you ever sit where there's no backrest, such as in the bleachers at a sporting event? For hours? Does that bother you? It, again, all depends on what you want, not what anyone else thinks you should have. How many people will use this? What are their heights? What inside activities do you have planned? Card playing? TV watching? CAD design is fun and addicting but if the occupants and their activities aren't taken into consideration, you'll not be pleased with what you build. You seem to be taking the practical usage into account... good. I enjoy your enthusiasm, reminiscent of your first build if not more so.

The forward or aft dinette position w/radius profile: Standard design on canned hams and other campers, we've got examples too numerous to count. Tried and true. Why? Ergonomics 101. Ever try to stand up after you've entered the dinette seating area? Impossible without breaking your legs. You're forced to begin the crouching position as you seat yourself. Upon leaving, you first slide out and then stand. We do it automatically without thought. I'm 6' 1" and have never hit my head on the ceiling of DD. I've had four people sit at my dinette table in comfort. No one hit their head entering or exiting. I'm good to go. As I age my posture isn't going to become more erect. When you really think about it... these campers are advantageous to the old, crippled and infirmed. I'm living proof of that! :lol:
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Postby parnold » Wed Jan 04, 2012 2:24 pm

Thanks for the input and compliments Gary.

I am designing this trailer for use by me alone, although a little thought is going into the possibility of someday selling. I an single and travel alone. On occasion, I may have someone in for a cup of coffee, or a beer, but for the most part the trailer will sit empty except in crappy weather. I'd much rather sit outdoors and read than stay inside my trailer.

Twice a year I camp with my sons, so on these occasions, if weather is lousy, we have somewhere to eat/drink :beer:
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Postby StPatron » Wed Jan 04, 2012 2:47 pm

I hear ya on preferring to be out of doors when I go camping. You won't find me cooped up inside unless the weather has turned sour.

Given the expected circumstances you present, it doesn't seem that the fixed bed would be a hassle. When you're solo it would give you the option of either selecting the couch/table area or the bed when you enter your camper at days end or are forced inside by weather. When your sons are with you, oughta work too. I've spent many a night at deer camps eating, drinking, playing poker and bs'ing inside a tiny, canned ham with 6 or 7 people packed inside like sardines. No one ever complained about the accommodations. We were all dry, warm and amongst friends. If someone had whined about something... we'd have shown them the door. :lol:

Should you decide to sell it later, converting the fixed bed to a gaucho/couch arrangement would be quite simple providing you keep that in mind during the initial build. Or, the buyer may want it as is, never know.

Have you thought about what to use for a sliding mechanism on the pull-out?
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Postby parnold » Wed Jan 04, 2012 3:24 pm

Have you thought about what to use for a sliding mechanism on the pull-out?


I like the looks of your oak sliders, however I'm thinking of weight, and KISS. I am thinking about putting dolly wheels on the inside back/bottom, and handles on the outer surface. Grab the handles, lift slightly, and slide the whole thing out on the wheels. The wheels would catch on a lip so the drawer can't come all the way out. Drop some sort of leg (I printed a picture of the leg from yours to fuel ideas) and bingo! Instant kitchen.

I'll leave the top access unscrewed so I can change things if this idea doesn't work as I anticipate.
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Postby StPatron » Wed Jan 04, 2012 6:30 pm

That oughta work just fine. I once built something similar in order to gain access to items in an under-bed storage drawer in my pickup camper shell "camper". The wheels ran in the "built in track" ridges of the bed liner. Nothing wrong with KISS. :thumbsup:
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Postby parnold » Fri Jan 06, 2012 11:59 pm

Officially psyched!

I fired up the stove tonight..

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No cover, but it fired right up!

Next up, the furnace...

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Once I figured out the pilot light procedure, it fired up fine. I ran it on full for about 40 minutes, and played with the thermostat, which seems to work. As I turned the thermostat down, the flame would go out, but not the pilot, when I turned it back up, it fired up again. These two things alone make the purchase of the old pop up camper worthwhile! Next year, I'll be camping whatever the weather!! :P :beer: :awesome:
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