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Old 05-30-2012, 12:11 PM   #61
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As a suggestion see if you can find anyone building a house using insulated concrete forms. This is where there is 2" of foam, then they pour 6" of concrete, then another 2" of foam. Normally there is quite a bit of scrap they are glad to get rid of. Use that plus the foam in the cans and you can make a well insulated wall for cheap.
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Old 05-30-2012, 02:25 PM   #62
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Originally Posted by Ran D. St. Clair View Post
AKat777, I have lost track of your design intent. Do you have no 12V house batteries at all? If so, you are coming to an unusual design solution, but if it works for your mission that's all that matters. Most people in your situation would take 12V from the starter battery for occasional and minimal loads. Even one ceiling fan running all night while you are asleep is not a minimal load, so you might be better off not doing that. Not being able to start the truck in the morning would be a bummer. On the other hand, plugging the starter battery into a proper 3 stage charger with say 10A capacity would keep it fully topped off at all times and replace whatever your fans draw. That way you would still have 12V when not plugged into shore power for fans and other things as long as you don't draw too much for too long. Such a charger migh also have anti-sulfation technology and extend the life of your starter battery, especially if it sits for long intervals without running the engine. Having full time 12V might be handy for emergency lights, an entry light on the outside for finding the lock with they keys when it is dark, CO detector, or little accessory things like a cell phone charger, etc.
No worries Ran D, I often lose sight of my design intent.. But I did break down and spend about 250 at WallyWorld (WalMart) the other day. Couple of marine batteries, a couple connector cables and a tiny (410w) inverter, and I too have DC power now. The two batteries give me about 210 amp hours, which isnt a lot, but enough to run my LED lights for 64 hours non stop, or the lights and a fan overnight before recharging. If it works out I might add a couple more batteries and give myself about 400 amp hours.

The original design was to be on shore power 24/7. I decided to add a small battery bank to keep the fridge running while travelling from A to B. And a small fan to keep cool while I finish the inside. Running on DC power alone isnt feasible for my design. I intend to have an Insolet toilet, which alone is 1800 watts. Add in a top end toaster oven (1500 watts) the AC (unknown) and the hot water heater (1800 watts) and that is way too much draw for anything except high end batteries. Obviously everything isnt running all at once, but still the draw is BIG.

But that brings up a good question. Earlier in the thread we discussed good inverter/charger/transfer units. So everyone is charging their batteries when on shore power. But what does everyone use when no shore power is avail? What type of genny is everyone using? I think Ran D is using a tiny 1000w Honda iirc? What about everyone else? Ran D's little genny wouldnt even power my toaster oven to make dinner... lol. I was thinking a minimum of 3k on a quiet genny. I have a 5500 and a 1500 now, but they are not RV gennys, and you can hear them 1/2 mile away, lol.
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Old 05-30-2012, 02:37 PM   #63
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I went through three different generators before I bought a Martin Diesel generator. I have been very pleased with them. Mine is a little louder than the gas gens, but no trouble is worth a little noise.
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Old 05-30-2012, 09:42 PM   #64
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Mine has a 8k Onan Quiet Diesel. Wow is this thing quiet. It's under the left front of the living quarters. You can't barely hear it when in the bedroom. In the living room the microwave is about as loud.
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Old 05-31-2012, 09:43 AM   #65
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Actually, the Stealth Camper has an EU2000i which is good for about 13A continuous, and 17A short term, if I remember correctly. It is very quiet as are all the little Honda's. You can double that with a companion unit and the correct cable set. You can also go with a larger unit like the EU3000i but it is less portable, though still relatively portable, just heavier. Many of the gennies used in RV's are much larger but meant to be permanently mounted in the RV. This has advantages like auto start and the possability to plumb the exaust so it exits over the top of the roof line. On the other hand, the smaller units are really nice when you need to lug them around to get power some place strange. They can also be set up away from the unit with an extension cord making the inside of your unit even quieter. They are a target for theft though. There are other good brands for the small quiet generators, and they are often cheaper, but I don't know what they are off the top of my head. It seems the little Honda's are everywhere. A solid reputation is hard to beat.
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Old 06-02-2012, 09:35 PM   #66
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Originally Posted by Dwayne1 View Post
As a suggestion see if you can find anyone building a house using insulated concrete forms. This is where there is 2" of foam, then they pour 6" of concrete, then another 2" of foam. Normally there is quite a bit of scrap they are glad to get rid of. Use that plus the foam in the cans and you can make a well insulated wall for cheap.
If weight wasnt an issue, that would certainly be a cheaper way to go. But the concrete that always sticks to it puts me over my weight budget.
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Old 06-02-2012, 09:47 PM   #67
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Originally Posted by Ran D. St. Clair View Post
Actually, the Stealth Camper has an EU2000i which is good for about 13A continuous, and 17A short term, if I remember correctly. It is very quiet as are all the little Honda's. You can double that with a companion unit and the correct cable set. You can also go with a larger unit like the EU3000i but it is less portable, though still relatively portable, just heavier. Many of the gennies used in RV's are much larger but meant to be permanently mounted in the RV. This has advantages like auto start and the possability to plumb the exaust so it exits over the top of the roof line. On the other hand, the smaller units are really nice when you need to lug them around to get power some place strange. They can also be set up away from the unit with an extension cord making the inside of your unit even quieter. They are a target for theft though. There are other good brands for the small quiet generators, and they are often cheaper, but I don't know what they are off the top of my head. It seems the little Honda's are everywhere. A solid reputation is hard to beat.
I agree Honda has a decent rep. I looked at the eu2000i. Online pricing of 900ish, and shipping takes a min of 5-10 days. Local stores carry them, but the price jumps to around 1400, which I thought was too much. So I am giving Ryobi a try. Picked up a 2000w for 600 bucks at Homeless Depot. It has the same Db level as a Honda and also has an inverter built in for cleaner power. And I have used Ryobi power tools in the past. Not top of the line, but neither is the price, and they are reliable tools. So I will keep everyone posted how it works out.

The design is shaping up better now, and I am going to start framing this weekend. I will post pics of all the mistakes I am sure are going to happen, lol.

Speaking of design.. I am in need of a door expert. Perhaps Doc can tell me what he did, since his rig and mine are cousins. My side door is a 'standard' cargo door. I need to know how to modify doorway for a RV type door, or ideally, how to install a handle on the existing door so it can be opened/closed from the inside. Another option could be to simply leave the door alone, and install a house door in the framework I am building for the inside. Only thing that worries me, is some smartazz coming along and locking the outside door as a joke. Ideas anyone?
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Old 06-03-2012, 06:57 AM   #68
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Well I didn't have a door at all on the side, I just bought a door and took a Sawzall to the wall. One side note; I got my door used off of a travel trailer. The trailer had been in an accident and I got the door for less than $100.

Personally, I would fabricate a new locking mech for the existing door. A house door may look cheesy. I don't mind looking like I built it, but I don't like looking like the hillbilly that I am
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Old 06-03-2012, 08:54 AM   #69
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I don't mind looking like I built it, but I don't like looking like the hillbilly that I am
But if it looks like a hillbilly built it ... then any hillbilly can work on it!
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Old 06-03-2012, 11:59 AM   #70
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Well I didn't have a door at all on the side, I just bought a door and took a Sawzall to the wall. One side note; I got my door used off of a travel trailer. The trailer had been in an accident and I got the door for less than $100.

Personally, I would fabricate a new locking mech for the existing door. A house door may look cheesy. I don't mind looking like I built it, but I don't like looking like the hillbilly that I am
I will post pics of the door (and the new framing for the bunk) later today, but anyone know of anyone with experience in fabricating a new locking system for the door? I truly have no idea where to even start with it.

I think no door at all and using a sawzall would be much easier in the long run I am also still thinking about having a regular house door behind the cargo door. We have a trailer at the show with this setup, it looks ok, not the greatest, but it works..
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Old 06-03-2012, 12:14 PM   #71
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Add some hardware so you can LOCK the door that is there OPEN against the wall, this way no one can close it to lock you in. Put a light camper door behind the big door, maybe even with a nice side light and then latch the big door shut only for when you go away, storage, travel. What's on there now does make an awesome seal and with a quality lock on it it will be much more secure than the flimsy lock on a camper door.....
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Old 06-03-2012, 03:03 PM   #72
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Add some hardware so you can LOCK the door that is there OPEN against the wall, this way no one can close it to lock you in. Put a light camper door behind the big door, maybe even with a nice side light and then latch the big door shut only for when you go away, storage, travel. What's on there now does make an awesome seal and with a quality lock on it it will be much more secure than the flimsy lock on a camper door.....
Yea, I was thinking something along those lines. and the added hardware to 'lock' the door to the side of the truck came to me after I typed that post.
Attached is a pic of something the show did (badly) along the same lines. I want to make sure mine looks much cleaner.
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Old 06-03-2012, 04:41 PM   #73
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A side light and an half moon window above?
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Old 06-03-2012, 05:38 PM   #74
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A side light and an half moon window above?
I could see a half moon above the door, not sure about a side light though. Lack of privacy.
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Old 06-03-2012, 05:49 PM   #75
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Default Da Toilet

So thought I would put this out there. I think there was a link in Randy's Stealth thread linking to this, or perhaps it was in the thread. Honestly dont remember right off.

I am ordering the Insolet, but hands down, the cheapest commode out there is the Home Depot 5 gallon bucket with some kitchen trash liners and some kitty litter. When I first heard this, my response was "no way". But after sharing a porta-john with 10-15 other peeps for the last several months, the bucket didnt seem so bad. So I tried it the other night in my truck while I was working. And it wasnt as bad as I thought. The kitty litter (and the scented bag) kept the smell to a minimum (always a concern). Wouldnt want to do this every day, but in a pinch, I can attest to the fact that it *does* work....lol
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Old 06-03-2012, 05:57 PM   #76
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I guess it all depends on your own tolerance.

Me this, or similar, is the absolute minimum:

Thetford Corp Porta Potti 550P Msd THE-92856,MSD Portable Toilets,JMSOnline.net Marine Supply and Boating Store
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Old 06-03-2012, 08:43 PM   #77
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Years ago when I was traveling in bus coaches with bands, there was no #2 in the toilets. This was where the term "bagging one" came about. You would put the biodegradable garbage bag over the toilet seat. do your business. slow down the bus and sling it onto the shoulder. It would disturb you if you knew how many band buses were doing that.

Always check the mirrors before slinging. I know of more than one story of guys slinging the bag and having it explode on the vehicle behind them. one of them hit the windshield of a cop, who stopped the bus and made them clean his car.
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Old 06-04-2012, 09:46 AM   #78
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Can you put a lock through the locking mechanism when it's in the un-locked position so nobody can lock you in? Then on the inside just a simple locking device from a good hardware store should work. There are all kinds of things for that I think. Or, put a surface mounted dead bolt on the inside. I'd just get a couple of those brackets that you slip a 2x4 into to secure it while you're in there.
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Old 06-05-2012, 06:27 PM   #79
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I solved this problem by putting a door in the door, whereas I gather you are talking about putting a door inside the outer door. By putting a door in the door, I am still able to open the origional barn doors to gain full access to the rear of the truck. This comes in handy for loading big things and also allows me to use the origional loading ramp as it was origionally intended. I insulated the origional doors as well as the inner door that I added. I used a standard door knob and dead bolt like you would find on any regular house. Yes the door knob looks a little out of place, but not too bad. I also added an outer flange to the inner door to provide for a rubber weather seal. That and I have 2 layers of the folded type weather seals between the door and the jam all the way around. I also put a small 2" drip rail over both the outer doors, and another over the inner door. I have never had any problems with moisture coming in, even with heavy thonderstorms lashing at the back of the truck. I am not saying that it is the best solution as the rubber door seals to put a little pressure on the latch or dead bolt when the door is closed. To open the door I have to pull (or push) the door shut to take pressure off the latch (or deadbolt) before turning the knob (or unlocking the deadbolt), but it is a pretty minor issue.
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Old 06-05-2012, 10:54 PM   #80
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but hands down, the cheapest commode out there is the Home Depot 5 gallon bucket with some kitchen trash liners and some kitty litter. When I first heard this, my response was "no way". But after sharing a porta-john with 10-15 other peeps for the last several months, the bucket didnt seem so bad. So I tried it the other night in my truck while I was working. And it wasnt as bad as I thought. The kitty litter (and the scented bag) kept the smell to a minimum (always a concern). Wouldnt want to do this every day, but in a pinch, I can attest to the fact that it *does* work....lol
No toilet tissue? Yuck!
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