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Old 11-19-2012, 07:26 AM   #1
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Join Date: Nov 2012
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Default Looking for advice

Thank you everyone in advance. I just found this site and this is my first post.

I'm thinking about building my own Toterhome. My biggest concern is what to start with as a vehicle. I'll be using it to tow a race car trailer. Right now I have a 20' foot open trailer but plan to get a 28' - 32' enclosed within a few years. It also must be large enough for my family of four. I'd like it to sleep 6 if posible. I've done some research and have a few ideas. First I think the cheapest would be a used school bus. The bus idea scares me because they are not built for towing and not sure if it would have enough power. I've also thought about a straight box/box truck. But not sure what size I'd need or how easily it would be to convert. My dream would be a class 8, but I'm afraid of the expence.

In short I guess I'm asking how much power will I need for a worry free toterhome that will last several years? Is it possible with a bus conversion? How big of a box truck would I need. And budget is an issue.

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Old 11-19-2012, 10:19 PM   #2
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Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: West Fargo ND
Posts: 300

Racing junk is you best bet, buy a truck someone has invested 3-4 times what he is asking for it, make a road trip out the inspect your purchase, (could be a good time in itself) then drive the truck home.

When you start adding things up like an angle iron here, tires there, in-dash stereo, some chrome wheel simulators perhaps, then toss in all the time you could/should be working on your race car.

Right now with the used market so flush with end of season rigs, and the economy so depressed there is pile and piles of trucks in the under 20 grand range.

If you don't have 20 grand to spend on even a schoolie conversion don't start! The bus will cost you 5-10K then a few hundred here, a thousand there and you'll be at 15 17K really fast. You'll then have a schoolie that you could probably sell if your luck, 8-12K when your done.

Sorry to throw this at ya, there is a reason there are not a dozen online forums for truck conversions, other than the pros, its just not worth doing yourself right now.


2001 GMC 6500 Topkick, 22' box, dropped frame, designed to fit into a 9' garage door. 3126 CAT 6spd Man Lo-Pro 19.5's w/ 3.07 rear axle ratio
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Old 11-20-2012, 12:43 AM   #3
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Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: Willamina Or
Posts: 277
Default Time and money

Blizz is 100% correct. I am doing my own and just passed the two year mark and the dollar amount has passed what many finished rigs are listed for on racingjunk. If you can find anything close to what you want I would say buy don't build. But if you have the time and the money and a deep desire to build your own then sit down and try to make a budget for both money and time. If you build it you will be shocked. Would I do it again? yes but I would farm out more of the work. As far as what you can tow, think about how heavy the biggest trailer you will tow is and then add a little more to be safe. Good luck and keep us posted.
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Old 11-20-2012, 07:02 AM   #4
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Join Date: Nov 2012
Posts: 2

Thanks guys, that really helps. I'll probably just stick with the motorhome until we can buy a true toter and trailer combo.
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