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Old 01-04-2013, 10:47 PM   #1
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Join Date: Jun 2012
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New project/1st TC rig....

Picking up my new project tomorrow. it's a 1988 SunLite Hideaway 9.5' slide in. I say project because it needs the entire roof ripped off and replaced (water damage of course) luckily, the damage does not extend to the nose over the bunk, nor to the walls. It also needs an a/c unit. After it was taken out of service, the a/c unit was robbed for another slide in that was not factory equipped with a/c. None of this is any concern to me; the price was right and I wouldn't want something that didn't need work, i LOVE a project!!!

My previous project camper, for those that don't frequent the TT forum: My humble TT renovation project

Plus, I am quite certain I will be personalizing and upgrading this unit plenty along the way. It has a full wet bath, dinette/bed, queen bed in the overhead, furnace, and kitchen with fridge, stainless double sink, 3 burner range w/oven, and I will be adding a microwave. It holds two 20# LP cylinders. A previous owner has added a gray tank as it only came factory with a black tank (gray waste shared black tank originally). However the gray tank has been busted, so I'm going to have to source out another tank, I won't be reverting to the factory single waste tank setup.
I will have to replace every interior ceiling panel, roof trusses and the outer roof skin is aluminum but will either get resealed or else replaced with rubber EPDM RV roofing. Really want to stick with aluminum, seems much more durable. It has a large vent over the queen bunk which in the roof rebuild may get replaced with a standard vent. Vents will get MaxAir covers, after installing them on my TT I insist on having them on everything from now on. I will possibly install new flooring material and update some other interior along the way. I know how I am, once I get started I never find the end LOL....

The truck is already fairly well setup for the task. It's a 96 Ram 3500 Club Cab Dually 6x6 (4x4 is an ignorant designation for a dually, it has 6 wheels not 4!), highly modified Cummins diesel, 5 speed, 14 ply load range G 19.5" tires on custom steel wheels, air bags in the rear. I will be adding a sway bar in the rear and have a disk brake rear end in storage already to upgrade from drums. The truck also has a Jacobs exhaust brake and a 1,000W inverter along with a gazillion other mods but these are the ones that pertain to the TC. The inverter might get pulled off of truck and installed on camper. Initially I installed it on the truck under the hood for occasional use to run power tools etc., but it rarely gets used for that and I also have a 1500W generator that isn't a pain to lug around if I need remote power... I usually won't be out much longer than a weekend so extreme boondocking isn't a concern, between a couple batteries, the generator and running the truck for a while to recharge batteries, I will be plenty fine there. I'd like to find a larger generator to run a/c unit on camper because I'm thinking that I will not usually have hookups on outings.

Here's a few pics to get warmed up. The camper is going to sit until it warms up outside, it won't fit in my garage and its too cold out to mess with right now. I may do some work on the inside of it before I get to the roof though like try to massage the microwave in somehow. Not entirely sure what other mods will happen to it just yet, I will probably add an outdoor shower box and removable curtain/rod setup, but aside from that it just depends on what space I have to work with and what I deem necessary. I always have lots of ideas for mods but who knows what will actually fit and work or what is truly needed

Pic of my truck with tongue heavy trailer and like 15 psi in the bags, the camper pics are from previous owner taken about 5 years ago but its in basically the same condition except the roof
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1988 SunLite Hideaway 9.5' TC project

1996 Ram 3500 Cummins dually highly modified
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Old 01-05-2013, 09:56 PM   #2
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Join Date: Jul 2012
Location: Genoa City, WI
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Looking forward to following your new project! Just a word of advice - don't park near any trees

Dreaming of a Class C. Short list: 2009 Winnebago Outlook 30D; 2012 Winnebago Aspect 28B; 2012 Coachmen Concord 301SS
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Old 01-05-2013, 10:01 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by Mamadubbs View Post
Looking forward to following your new project! Just a word of advice - don't park near any trees
LOL Thanks

I'm gonna try not to go overboard on this unit, I will do some upgrading here and there but nothing massive I hope. I really can see myself building one from the ground up in a couple years if I really like this one. But I've never had or been in a truck camper before so gotta make sure it works out like I think/hope it will first
1988 SunLite Hideaway 9.5' TC project

1996 Ram 3500 Cummins dually highly modified
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Old 01-06-2013, 01:10 PM   #4
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Good luck... Looking forward to seeing some progress pics and stories.....
2006 Dodge Ram 2500 quad cab 4x4 5.7L Hemi
2005 Northwood Desert Fox 21SW
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Old 01-09-2013, 04:29 PM   #5
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When you have the roof opened up or any other areas it is a great time to add wiring for solar and other needs like an exterior coax connection for campground cable or a place to hook up an outside battery for charging, or a generator, or a satellite antenna.

I added a second battery and put two solar panels on the roof of my camper and 85% of the work was in running wires and getting access to buried sections of the camper. Unlike boats the RV manufacturers tend to forget about access to systems by the owners to do repairs or to add new capabilities.
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Old 01-10-2013, 12:05 AM   #6
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Yea I've already been planning out what all I will be adding wiring for while its apart lol great minds think alike :-)
1988 SunLite Hideaway 9.5' TC project

1996 Ram 3500 Cummins dually highly modified
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Old 02-08-2013, 10:19 PM   #7
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Yes this thing is still on the back burner..... It's in my friends barn. Meanwhile we may be moving across the county soon, actually a couple miles from where the camper is right now. After the move, and after the current house sells, I am planning to have a 40x60x14' tall pole barn shop built. So gonna be super busy! Don't know when I will get around to this thing but hopefully sometime this year lol

I've been thinking about what I really need from a camper. The main use would be for weekend off roading trips and weekend diesel competition events. So basically just overnight stays. Foul weather, extensive cooking and personal hygiene are not big considerations for my uses. Mainly a place to sleep, store some food for a couple meals, and store some personal things. I need the tow capacity without an extended hitch.

I have a fiberglass bed cap for my truck and have seriously been considering stripping the slide in camper and making a small sleeping bed bunk inside the truck bed cap sideways in the front, and mounting the refrigerator and maybe furnace in the truck bed (properly vented), pack a Coleman camp stove, folding table, lawn chairs, tabletop jug of water w/spout, and a bucket toilet like tent campers use. I have a small portable generator I could mount on my trailer, and can setup a propane tank somewhere, extra house battery with an isolator on the truck, add some lighting and plywood and carpet inside. It would serve all my purposes, save a ton of weight and some fuel and really simplify maintenance and driving and keep a lot of visibility. Not to mention I could still have room for tools and spare parts in the truck bed if needed. More or less make it like a mini class C conversion van just in a one ton dually 6x6 diesel variation :-)
Thoughts? Comments? Ideas?
1988 SunLite Hideaway 9.5' TC project

1996 Ram 3500 Cummins dually highly modified
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Old 02-19-2013, 10:07 PM   #8
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Scratch that idea, I think I can make the slide in work with trailer. Can't wait to get started on this thing and get it done. Someone in the past added a separate black tank under the rear but it is busted. Think I'm gonna remove it and remove the toilet (which needs repair) and go with a "cassette" style? Toilet, portable kind ya know. Glue / silicone down a piece of plastic over where toilet was. This will allow more room in the shower, and simplify dumping which will be good since this thing will only get used a few times a year for dry camping with no dump stations available but some places will have some sort of restroom facilities. I think this will work out better overall. The shower is too cramped for me as is. Wouldn't mind to remove the bathroom sink and vanity for more room if not too much trouble. Don't need it there anyway. I will still have the gray tank for sink/shower drain off.

I've got a used air conditioner lined up for it. Need to find an RV generator to mount on my trailer and will be set! I've got a 1500W but we all know that won't run the ac! I think it will run a microwave though haha

1988 SunLite Hideaway 9.5' TC project

1996 Ram 3500 Cummins dually highly modified
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