M1088 camper conversion

ckouba

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That's close to what I came up with too, but I figure I'll lose a bit in radiused corners and internal baffle material volume.

From our boating experience, we've gone 10 days on 150 gallons. I think 100g is a good place to start but would like the extra to make extended boondocking a reality.

We've been on trips where we had to go into town to either resupply or dump out without being at the end of our trip. We've also been places where it'd be hours to extract ourselves, go find water, then go back to where we were, so in the end we just over packed on water- which takes up much more space in the van, percentage- and capacity-wise. I'd like to avoid those scenarios, and a nice big tank in the frame rails plus another 50 or so in the envelope should take care of that, with plenty of space and GVWR to play with!
 

dbduchene

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That's close to what I came up with too, but I figure I'll lose a bit in radiused corners and internal baffle material volume.

From our boating experience, we've gone 10 days on 150 gallons. I think 100g is a good place to start but would like the extra to make extended boondocking a reality.

We've been on trips where we had to go into town to either resupply or dump out without being at the end of our trip. We've also been places where it'd be hours to extract ourselves, go find water, then go back to where we were, so in the end we just over packed on water- which takes up much more space in the van, percentage- and capacity-wise. I'd like to avoid those scenarios, and a nice big tank in the frame rails plus another 50 or so in the envelope should take care of that, with plenty of space and GVWR to play with!
Here is my line of thought for what it is worth. The hardest thing to deal with when it comes to long term in an overland/expedition rig is the water and then black water waste. Part of my take away is from the sailing community but applied differently. We see water filtering systems for us to make water from everything but sea water and some rigs now having RO so that they can even use sea water.

My plan for the fresh water system is to use 3 tanks. A big tank like you have as my primary. Then two 10 to 30 gallon tanks. I start with the big tank and one of the smaller ones full. As we shower wash dishes and maybe even run a small washer dryer combo it goes into the third tank that will serve as the gray water tank. I then run that water through a recovery filter system and back into the smaller tank. To use again for showers and the such.

For cooking and such we draw off of the big tank and into the gray tank to be filtered again and used for secondary uses.

For black waste I am planing a cassette toilet with at least 2 cartridges and a 30 to 50 gallon black tank as a back up for longer term solutions. I hope to never use the black tank and it will be the furthest back tank. The cassette toilet will flush using the reclaimed water causing you to add small amounts of fresh water back in.

Yes this is complicated in comparison but us should allow my to stay out much longer with out trying to carry HUGE amounts of water.

And yes I know I am an engineer and we always tend to start out over thinking things to solve what we think is a problem or a way to make something better.
 

Mullaney

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Here is my line of thought for what it is worth. The hardest thing to deal with when it comes to long term in an overland/expedition rig is the water and then black water waste. Part of my take away is from the sailing community but applied differently. We see water filtering systems for us to make water from everything but sea water and some rigs now having RO so that they can even use sea water.

My plan for the fresh water system is to use 3 tanks. A big tank like you have as my primary. Then two 10 to 30 gallon tanks. I start with the big tank and one of the smaller ones full. As we shower wash dishes and maybe even run a small washer dryer combo it goes into the third tank that will serve as the gray water tank. I then run that water through a recovery filter system and back into the smaller tank. To use again for showers and the such.

For cooking and such we draw off of the big tank and into the gray tank to be filtered again and used for secondary uses.

For black waste I am planing a cassette toilet with at least 2 cartridges and a 30 to 50 gallon black tank as a back up for longer term solutions. I hope to never use the black tank and it will be the furthest back tank. The cassette toilet will flush using the reclaimed water causing you to add small amounts of fresh water back in.

Yes this is complicated in comparison but us should allow my to stay out much longer with out trying to carry HUGE amounts of water.

And yes I know I am an engineer and we always tend to start out over thinking things to solve what we think is a problem or a way to make something better.
.
I almost wonder if some of the survival school teachings for capturing water could be used?

In a long encampment, you could setup a water capture. Things done with low effort using something on top of the habitat (may not work because of solar arrays). Captured water could go into containers or straight into the gray tank. Again in a long term encampment, that captured water could be used for showers or clothes washing for sure. Lots of ways to capture water if that is a concern...

Disposing of black water in the middle of nowhere could be possible too - without be a polluting idiot - and depending on where you might be. Especially in small quantities...
 

dbduchene

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.
I almost wonder if some of the survival school teachings for capturing water could be used?

In a long encampment, you could setup a water capture. Things done with low effort using something on top of the habitat (may not work because of solar arrays). Captured water could go into containers or straight into the gray tank. Again in a long term encampment, that captured water could be used for showers or clothes washing for sure. Lots of ways to capture water if that is a concern...

Disposing of black water in the middle of nowhere could be possible too - without be a polluting idiot - and depending on where you might be. Especially in small quantities...
I have thought of both disposing in the wild and capture. I think that capture would be easy in my design as I intend to be able to tilt my solar to be able to be at max more of the day and I am looking for somewhere between a 17 to 20 foot awning. I used to have a 30 foot class A with a 22 foot awning and patio room and you would not believe how much use it got and how it became the gathering area.
 

ckouba

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The water capacity/capability is something I continue to mull over but I do need to start narrowing down the possibilities here soon. I like the reclaim idea but wonder if it's worth the effort. Conversely, if I was already thinking about a filtration system to draw in outside water, it shouldn't be too hard to pivot that concept and accommodate some sort of reclaim tank as well.

Over the last few days I have made some excellent (but slow) progress in the cargo bay, despite logging my first do-over. I have finalized the hoist for the spare tire fixture, acquired and installed some appropriate latches for the fixture, fabbed up an appropriate manner to secure the spares in their fixture, and reinforced the hoist point in a manner which didn't block delivery of the tires to the ground (my do-over). I am getting close to dropping off the structure for blasting and coating.

The list of need-to-do's prior to that feels like it grow each time cross something off.... I still need to cap off all the open tube ends, finish weld anywhere I didn't do all the sides of a join, grind the weldment flat where it will displace exterior skins, install some lands for the plywood sub-roofing, do the engineering for struts to hold the rear doors open or closed, figure out how to secure the doors closed (car door striker maybe?), reinforce rear doors in prep for skinning, create sealing lips for any of the openings I want to make weather tight (cargo bay doors), finish the framing for the bath vent... These are the things I can think of just sitting here without looking at the project. I am sure I'll forget some things and have to weld after it's been powder coated, but I am trying to minimize that for multiple reasons.

My goal this weekend is to get the structure off of the chassis and complete all the welding and grinding on the front wall, and then get it reattached. We'll see how that goes.

Pics of the latest work-

The whole system:


Triangulation to support the load:


Carrying/storage fixture:


Fixture "landing pad" and latch hook:


Lower end of hoist support:


Upper end of same support:


If you've got 2 minutes of your life you'd like to waste, you can see the whole thing in very slow action HERE.

Not shown is the actual finished fixture, with strap tie down points and the tires strapped into the fixture quite securely. I am pretty satisfied that the whole assembly will remain where it's supposed to once this vehicle starts being driven.
 

chucky

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The water capacity/capability is something I continue to mull over but I do need to start narrowing down the possibilities here soon. I like the reclaim idea but wonder if it's worth the effort. Conversely, if I was already thinking about a filtration system to draw in outside water, it shouldn't be too hard to pivot that concept and accommodate some sort of reclaim tank as well.

Over the last few days I have made some excellent (but slow) progress in the cargo bay, despite logging my first do-over. I have finalized the hoist for the spare tire fixture, acquired and installed some appropriate latches for the fixture, fabbed up an appropriate manner to secure the spares in their fixture, and reinforced the hoist point in a manner which didn't block delivery of the tires to the ground (my do-over). I am getting close to dropping off the structure for blasting and coating.

The list of need-to-do's prior to that feels like it grow each time cross something off.... I still need to cap off all the open tube ends, finish weld anywhere I didn't do all the sides of a join, grind the weldment flat where it will displace exterior skins, install some lands for the plywood sub-roofing, do the engineering for struts to hold the rear doors open or closed, figure out how to secure the doors closed (car door striker maybe?), reinforce rear doors in prep for skinning, create sealing lips for any of the openings I want to make weather tight (cargo bay doors), finish the framing for the bath vent... These are the things I can think of just sitting here without looking at the project. I am sure I'll forget some things and have to weld after it's been powder coated, but I am trying to minimize that for multiple reasons.

My goal this weekend is to get the structure off of the chassis and complete all the welding and grinding on the front wall, and then get it reattached. We'll see how that goes.

Pics of the latest work-

The whole system:


Triangulation to support the load:


Carrying/storage fixture:


Fixture "landing pad" and latch hook:


Lower end of hoist support:


Upper end of same support:


If you've got 2 minutes of your life you'd like to waste, you can see the whole thing in very slow action HERE.

Not shown is the actual finished fixture, with strap tie down points and the tires strapped into the fixture quite securely. I am pretty satisfied that the whole assembly will remain where it's supposed to once this vehicle starts being driven.
Nice work and watching the video i had an idea about something we spoke of a while back while you still have room and access put your pintle hitch back in and a access hole behind the tires lined up with the hitch with a intertube stretched over the hole with a slit in it so you could hook a tow rope or cable in case u needed to pull or be pulled you could even make a tube path under the tires to keep that short piece of cable always hooked on the pintle
 

ckouba

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Nice work and watching the video i had an idea about something we spoke of a while back while you still have room and access put your pintle hitch back in and a access hole behind the tires lined up with the hitch with a intertube stretched over the hole with a slit in it so you could hook a tow rope or cable in case u needed to pull or be pulled you could even make a tube path under the tires to keep that short piece of cable always hooked on the pintle

Thanks Chucky. I was thinking about that too but there is potential for a tow point to be constructed at the end of the chassis, slightly below the cargo bay elevation, without effecting ground clearance and departure angle and still letting a tow rope swing without loading the box. I will have to construct it, but I think it may be the most elegant option in execution.

I was also looking at the M1088 tie down loops which I took off and thinking about re-installing them for additional options.
 

ckouba

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The separation went incredibly well:



So I went off capping and grinding everything which I could find. I also finished a few welds on the underside which were inaccessible from the top:


The box is ready to go back on at this point (I think) but I have a few leftover things to affix to the chassis at the big bar for the airlift points.
 

ckouba

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Reassembly also went well:


Then I realized I had forgotten to fab up the pedestal for the TCM (at least what I think is the TCM). It would be quite foolish not to remove it again and do that seeing as I had everything set up and ready to go. So I did it.

Fabbed up a perch, which looked fantastic, and welded it into the airlift tie-down crossmember:


Then I proceeded to re-load the camper.

Whereupon I realized I would now have my second "do-over" of the build. Some of the structure of the build landed squarely on the pedestal with the box still about 9" above the lower rails. NG!

I got out the sharpie and drew on the crossmember exactly where it needed to go and then re-unloaded the box. I was able to salvage the pedestal nicely, slicing off ~half of it and moving the unit forward to mount more on the crossmember itself, right under the induction plumbing.

New mount:


With the unit in place (is that the TCM?):


And then... reloaded the box for the third time. Getting pretty good at it at this point.

Third time's the charm:


All in all, I didn't really think that I'd get through the whole process over my weekend and am extremely pleased to have gotten this content done. Still have a bit of other work to do but I was dreading the task of separating the box from the chassis and wasn't even really sure how I was going to do it. Worked out well in the end though!
 

ramdough

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Reassembly also went well:


Then I realized I had forgotten to fab up the pedestal for the TCM (at least what I think is the TCM). It would be quite foolish not to remove it again and do that seeing as I had everything set up and ready to go. So I did it.

Fabbed up a perch, which looked fantastic, and welded it into the airlift tie-down crossmember:


Then I proceeded to re-load the camper.

Whereupon I realized I would now have my second "do-over" of the build. Some of the structure of the build landed squarely on the pedestal with the box still about 9" above the lower rails. NG!

I got out the sharpie and drew on the crossmember exactly where it needed to go and then re-unloaded the box. I was able to salvage the pedestal nicely, slicing off ~half of it and moving the unit forward to mount more on the crossmember itself, right under the induction plumbing.

New mount:


With the unit in place (is that the TCM?):


And then... reloaded the box for the third time. Getting pretty good at it at this point.

Third time's the charm:


All in all, I didn't really think that I'd get through the whole process over my weekend and am extremely pleased to have gotten this content done. Still have a bit of other work to do but I was dreading the task of separating the box from the chassis and wasn't even really sure how I was going to do it. Worked out well in the end though!
That is your ABS module. Everything looks great!

Would love to see how you lift and remove the camper!


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 

ckouba

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Would love to see how you lift and remove the camper!
A pair jack stands at the back and a pair of high-lift jacks used carefully with some tubing attached to the structure at the front. There's a pic at the top of the post above:


The tubing slides over the tower for the jack and with care, can be used to get the job done.
 

ckouba

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That is your ABS module. Everything looks great!
Thanks Doug. I did see a sticker with ABS written on it but I thought I read somewhere it was for the trans. Regardless, it's not going anywhere now!
 

chucky

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A pair jack stands at the back and a pair of high-lift jacks used carefully with some tubing attached to the structure at the front. There's a pic at the top of the post above:


The tubing slides over the tower for the jack and with care, can be used to get the job done.
Looking good ! I would have killed to have one of those carport buildings . The sun doesnt even come out unless i go outside to my truck then its like being a grave digger on the sun lol
 

Mullaney

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Looking good ! I would have killed to have one of those carport buildings . The sun doesnt even come out unless i go outside to my truck then its like being a grave digger on the sun lol
.
Sad but true! I can go outside, look at what I want to do.
Everything is cool and a little cloudy.

By the time I gather some tools and parts - the clouds are gone!
Almost every time...
 

ckouba

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Looking good ! I would have killed to have one of those carport buildings .

Thanks Chucky. It was there when we moved in, but I did bump the top up 3' when we bought our first boat. Well worth paying someone to do that. I am SO glad to have it!

One more pic which I neglected to include in the above post- one of the pedestal area once the box has been set back down:


I am thinking about re-routing the trans dipstick slightly but everything else seems to be all good at this point.
 

ramdough

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Thanks Doug. I did see a sticker with ABS written on it but I thought I read somewhere it was for the trans. Regardless, it's not going anywhere now!
No problem. There should be a connector that is round attached to the original mounting bracket. That is your port for reading codes. Make sure you can still access that. Maybe route that cable off to the side or flip the cab to access. Preferably on the side of it will reach.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 

ckouba

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Some good work was done this weekend, starting with another do-over. The cargo bay doors were aesthetically pleasing but the hinges flexed too much and I lost the floor space in the bay which the hinges occupy. Time to design something else to get that space back and reliably locate the doors so I could install some latches. Worked up a new design and got it built.

New hinge:


Installed (but prior to removing the original ones), you can appreciate the floor space access issue:


With the doors reliably hinging, I could reliably locate the latches to hold them closed:


The next thing was to fab up a side cargo bay door. Apologies for the crappy angle but the carport is only so wide.

Closed(-ish):


Propped open:


Sealing surface also installed:


Lastly for this weekend, I got the roofing material "landing" welded in all around the interior perimeter of the roof structure. The roof will be 1/2" plywood recessed to be flush with the 2x2 tube creating the top of the habitat, and it will rest on the landing of 1"x0.125" flat stock I welded around the edge:


This goes completely around the top of the structure. Plywood will be glued and screwed to the landing.

It was a pretty good weekend.

I was hoping to get it to powder coating by the end of the month but will likely miss that deadline. I will be gone through mid-August so work will grind to a halt for a while- though I was hoping to get it blasted and coated while I was away, but this trip won't wait.

I still have the rear doors to reinforce, some final welds to put it, some welds to grind flush, tubes to cap/seal, and a few more pieces of tube to stick in, but I am getting close. Powder coating is the next major milestone.
 
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