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.