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Old 11-06-2011, 01:38 PM   #1
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Default Converting a toterhome to a full T/C motorhome

I am a faithful viewer of what is for sale on RacingJunk.com. It seems to me that toterhomes (truck conversion with a small box and set up for fifth wheel or gooseneck) are much more plentiful than what I would call a full motorhome truck conversion (no platform in back for the fifth wheel or gooseneck).

Consequently toterhomes seem to sell at a discount.

Has anyone thought about buying a toterhome, removing the fifth wheel, extending the box, and finishing off the inside?

Pros and cons would be appreciated.

Thanks!

Dick
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Started looking for 379 Peterbilt TC, 24' to 30' box, bumper pull--but ended up w/1999 Liberty Coach conversion of 45' Prevost XLV bus. 1,000sf heated/AC'd race shop w/dump station, 50amp shore pwr where bus parks, 3 NASCAR/ARCA race cars & 26' Bravo trailer.
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Old 11-06-2011, 05:06 PM   #2
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Perception must come down to what you are looking for. I have been checking racingjunk daily for months looking for a cheap toter home (with gooseneck) and it seems to me all the cheap units I find are full boxes set up for a tag trailer, and I can't seem to find the right deal on a toter. Have you looked in the motorhome and hdt sections as well as the toterhome section?

My first thought was "why would you go to all that work", but thinking about it it really would not be too bad. A good toter is really only lacking a bedroom as most have all the amenities and the only bad part is the mini-bunk over the cab. As long as you start with a rear entry unit, that door becomes the door to the bedroom. The rear deck is usually about 9', just right for a bedroom with a queen sized bed. Use the existing side stepwell up to the deck to put in your new outside entry door. Really just need the box and some wiring for lighting, etc., all the plumbing and mechanicals are done and not needed in a bedroom. Should not really be a bad project. Trickiest part will be making the joint from the old box to the new presentable and match up where it does not look like you just welded a shack on the back of the truck.

Anyway, if you find a toter cheap enough for all that, let me know, I need one just as is.

Dave
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Old 11-06-2011, 05:27 PM   #3
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I'm checking Toterhomes, RV's and Motorhomes.

The thought process you went through is exactly what I've thought.

Don't worry, trashing a toterhome to turn into a full RV is plan B or C at this point.

Thanks for the comments.

Dick

PS: Have you thought about chopping the bedroom off?
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Started looking for 379 Peterbilt TC, 24' to 30' box, bumper pull--but ended up w/1999 Liberty Coach conversion of 45' Prevost XLV bus. 1,000sf heated/AC'd race shop w/dump station, 50amp shore pwr where bus parks, 3 NASCAR/ARCA race cars & 26' Bravo trailer.
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Old 11-06-2011, 11:50 PM   #4
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Good thought, but I don't think it would work the other way around. The wheel base is way longer on a toterhome, way too much overhang on a regular rv style conversion to consider a gooseneck hitch. I've seen a few screwy looking homemade short wheel base toters at the dirt track with the gooseneck hitch about 10' behind the axle. Emphasis on screwy looking, and I would think it would be really hard on the trailer, and probably overload the rear axle on the truck.

I'll keep looking for that good deal, hope I see it before you! lol.

And I've still got that top kick chassis in the drive way if I ever find time to start welding stuff together for my own conversion.
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Old 11-07-2011, 02:29 AM   #5
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hot rod and #90,

whats your budget?

don
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Old 11-07-2011, 06:58 AM   #6
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Default For the "joy" of it all . . .

Hello all you HDTers:

Been kinda quiet here on the board for the last couple of weeks; guess everyone is getting in their last outside work before the weather turns cold!

I have followed the information about racingjunk for awhile now, even though I already have my rig for conversion. As I never intended to do a "toter" I really never considered that need. Someone said in this thread about getting a rig already built, and "why do all that work?" A valid point, certainly.

I would take the opposite approach; why not do it. Having just turned the age where the government will start payig me back, I wanted a "one last final project" for my days ahead, whether that be a few years, or 30 years.

I am now about a year-and-a-half into my conversion, and have just started on the "living quarters" of my conversion. I really enjoy working on my project, and spend many hours planning, engineering, and then constructing whatever portion I am currently involved. I never expect to be done with my conversion! Even when its done, its not really done!

Doing the work yourself lets you learn a great deal about your vehicle; someday stuck on the road somewhere, that knowledge may come in handy. More importantly, it will keep you active and excercise your brain.

When I have "lulls" in my construction interest, then I climb in and "fire that mother up" and take a trip somewhere!

Live is good!

I certainly enjoy this site . . .

Best to all,

Speed
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Old 11-07-2011, 12:09 PM   #7
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OPie- No arguments on anything you said, I agree 100% if I was in your position. My first choice was to build for all the reasons you mentioned, rusty tools make me an unhappy guy. But I need the rig for my business, and I just can't seem to find the time to get started on the project. I bought a real nice GMC 5500 topkick cab/chassis a year and a half ago and it is still sitting in the driveway with a small pile of Elkhart parts in the garage, and no time to start on the serious business of welding together a box. So I've been struggling along still towing with my dually and scouring the racingjunk ads daily hoping to come across the right deal I can afford to buy already done. I did see a real nice 14' Renegade toter a month ago for a steal of a price at $39,500, but that one was clear across the country and it only lasted about 2 days. Blizz is right in that this is definitely the time to buy vs. build, the prices are right if you have the cash. So I'll have to keep looking on racingjunk every morning and try to beat #90 to that real good deal when it pops up.

Don- I'm looking for CHEAP, definitely can't afford anything like what you have in your pic. I've come across a number of units in the $50k range, which I know is a good deal, but my budget is more like $40k, and that is a stretch. Trying to keep it under what I can buy a new dually for and end up with a better rig in the long run. I know the right deal will pop up sooner or later. Would like a factory built unit for it to be presentable, but does not need to be fancy or late model or have slides, just reliable.
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Old 11-07-2011, 12:12 PM   #8
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OPie-

I believe you ended up with a new built to order box for your truck? Do you mind saying what that cost and the specifics of ordering one? I am tempted to go that way for my project truck, just bolt down a short box truck box like yours behind the cab, then all I have to build is the bed for the gooseneck. More $$, but less time, which is my holdup on the project. Thoughts?
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Old 11-07-2011, 01:36 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hot rod View Post
I've seen a few screwy looking homemade short wheel base toters at the dirt track with the gooseneck hitch about 10' behind the axle. Emphasis on screwy looking, and I would think it would be really hard on the trailer, and probably overload the rear axle on the truck.
Most all of the HDT guys on the escapees site have their 5th wheel several feet behind the rear axle - helps it behave more like a tag trailer, and makes maneuvering and backing better.

Just another perspective..
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Old 11-07-2011, 02:31 PM   #10
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Hot Rod, FYI I noticed there was a nice looking Kodiak toter right at the top of the list on racing junk this afternoon. Ad#2069704 They started off at 58K back in Feb, and now down to 45K. would think in this economy you would not have too much trouble talking them down below 40.
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