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Old 05-01-2003, 09:53 AM   #1
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First, thank you for this web site. When we came up with the idea of turning a semi into a (sort of) motor home we thought we would be winging it. It's good to know what has worked for others and what hasn't.

We are planning to stretch the frame of our truck and add a 25 or 26 foot box to make into living quarters. Originally we were planning to remove one of the rear axles, but somewhere on this site someone mentioned that the 40 foot length was too long for a single rear axle. This makes sense. Our question is what is the best wheel base for this kind of set up?

Thanks for your help.

Mark and Sherry Dwire
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Old 05-01-2003, 05:13 PM   #2
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Mark & Sherry -

Welcome to the site! A single rear axle is no problem, my conversion is exactly 40' with a 336" wheel base. I think the question you need to ask yourself is how are you going to use your conversion. If you plan to tow a racecar hauler than leave the second axle on. But if not and you like a real smooth ride than drop it. Everytime I take my conversion out on the road I am amazed at how nice it rides and handles even on rough roads. I added air ride to the front axle as well and I can honestly say it rides better than our Windstar minivan and that thing is smooth.

Good luck on your conversion and keep us posted as you move forward.

Bill

2003 28' Show Hauler Motorhome on a 1995 FL 120 www.showhauler.com
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Old 05-02-2003, 05:52 AM   #3
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Hi Mark and Sherrie,

Bill's assessment is correct. A Semi converted to single axle will be about 31 or 32K GVW. If you plan to be be grossing more than that, leave the tandems in place. Otherwise, drop out the front axle. You will have to install at least two additional carrier bearings, and have driveshafts manufactured to handle your additional length.

onezman
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Old 05-02-2003, 10:21 AM   #4
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Thank you for your answers. We plan to pull a tow dolley so we can have a van or small pickup to use for sightseeing.
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Old 05-02-2003, 11:18 AM   #5
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Why not get the ultimate sight seeing vehicle and tow it flat. A Jeep! Then you can hit scenic trails and beaches all over the country and not worry about a tow dolly.
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Old 05-02-2003, 10:40 PM   #6
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That's not a bad idea, Patrick, but we need something with a big enough back end so we can put Mark's four-wheel cart in it (he is disabled). I don't think we could fit it in a Jeep.
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Old 05-03-2003, 05:17 AM   #7
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Solution: A Jeep Cherokee, you can tow it flat also and it's still very capable off-road.
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Old 05-03-2003, 02:25 PM   #8
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Good thinkin', Patrick! Along the same line, a Ford Explorer with MANUAL 4WD can also be flat-towed, if I'm not mistaken. The Cherokee would also need manual 4WD, as you need the Neutral position in the transfer case. Towing a 2WD with the tranny in neutral, whether auto or manual, would soon cook the tranny.
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