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Old 04-30-2017, 04:42 AM   #1
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Default Well, never built one of these...but why not!

I'm a newish member, but been reading this site for several years. I am one of those that looks at all aspects of automotive industry and fabrication for both inspiration and solutions. I build custom cars...of all types. I have 49 Ford street rod, a 65 C10 and a 2002 Lincoln Navigator on 46" tires and Rockwells. I am a fan of wheels, on dirt, on asphalt and in mud.
Inspiration for my new mess: A little over a year ago I drove from here in central Az to Crown City, Ia. I was towing my 40ft gooseneck behind my 2002 Dodge 3500. Towing was good, sleeping in a cab, not good. I also realized how much I want my kids to see some of the country I have. Back roads and farmland, fairgrounds and small towns.
When I got home from that trip, my buddy just happened to be getting rid of a 1995 C6500. It had a 12ft utility bed on it, and had previously been a diesel mechanics work truck. It has massive disc brakes, and an Allison trans out of a bus...literally. I figure brakes and suspension should be a good platform to start with, the auto is a bonus.
Now, here's the goal: A sleeper meets toterhome. I don't want to stretch it out, my two car hauler is 53' pin to tail. So, been drawing ideas for a few weeks, playing with placement and viability. A 6ft box, with an overhead bunk. Simple dinette/bed, wet bath and tiny kitchenette. Grey and Black tanks will be overkill, but I would rather have too big than too small. It will be cramped to sleep in with the wife and kids, but doable.
Now the questions:
1) What size and wall tubing for the framework? For the main rails, floor and walls?
2) What is the best interior and head liner material?
3)Is there any advantage or disadvantage to building the unit as a complete assembly?(Meaning living quarters box, skirting with tanks and tote bed as a unit.)

Any ideas and comments would be appreciated. I can do a whole lot, but it's always good to get advice from people who have done what you're trying to do.
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Old 05-02-2017, 11:03 PM   #2
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Thought about finding a sleeper off an over the road truck for body of your quarters?
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Old 05-02-2017, 11:44 PM   #3
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I had thought about that, but when I've found them out here they were complete units. Kind of pricey to gut out, and I don't know what all could be salvaged or sold. After looking at some, I started thinking that I like the overhead bunk design on Renegade's and some others. With limited wheelbase, it really helps to have the up and over.
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Old 05-09-2017, 09:41 PM   #4
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You could have a coach builder build your box the way you want it and then finish it off yourself. Might be quicker and actually less costly than trying to build the whole box too. Might check around, maybe Renegade, or one of the others, has a toter living quarters that they need to get rid of that might work for you.
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Old 05-09-2017, 10:02 PM   #5
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I may be trying to get in touch with one of the trailer manufacturers down in Phoenix. I figure it would be worth comparing what they would charge to frame up a ,"basket".
They are tooled up and could probably do a blank pretty easily. It may come down to how busy they are, and if they want a break from the norm.
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Old 05-09-2017, 10:25 PM   #6
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Spacecraft and Hawk Engineering will build as much or as little as you want, I'm pretty sure. They're both pretty well known for quality. I'm sure there's more that will do it too.
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