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Old 08-05-2013, 11:41 AM   #29
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Beautiful rig.

What do they do for a toad/get-around vehicle? Drive the HDT everywhere? Drive one separately?
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Old 08-05-2013, 12:54 PM   #30
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Beautiful rig.

What do they do for a toad/get-around vehicle? Drive the HDT everywhere? Drive one separately?
Both, husband and wife, drive the semi if they need to go someplace (it's an automatic). There are also lots of bicycles in the truck storage (drom) box.
Wife took the HDT shopping when they were staying here, Walmart is no problem although some of the "specialty shops" parking lots were "iffy" so she parked it in adjacent (larger) lots and walked over with the children.

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Old 08-08-2013, 05:45 PM   #31
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More "guests" arrived this evening.

The Volvo with the hydraulic tilt Smart loader I designed and built few years back is here for the "annual visit" and tweaks.
For those who haven't seen it before this is how it works.










hjs
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Old 08-08-2013, 06:20 PM   #32
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Now that there is really neat.
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Old 08-11-2013, 09:58 PM   #33
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More "techie stuff" on this rig.
With 29,000 lb loaded, three axles and 17.5" tires are mandatory.

The only other option would be going with the 12 or 15K low profile Dexter but that would have introduced other challenges.
The ET Jr. hitch used to pull this rig is rated at 12,500 lb max vertical tongue weight,

and when hitched up it inflates (automatically) to 55 psi, 100 psi being the max, it's an air hitch. That calculates to 6,875 lb on the hitch pin. Subtracting this from 29,000 that leaves 22,125 to be distributed between the three axles and six tires. The axles are 8,000 lb each Dexters.

The suspension used with the axles is made by Ridewell.

It's an air suspension system,

and SpaceCraft is quite familiar how to adapt it to their trailers and frames. I don't think you are very likely to see it on any "Lippert framed rigs".
Each tire needs to carry almost 3,700 pounds which would max out your typical 16 inch G rated tire, hence six 17.5 inch H rated tires.

The rims are Alcoa aluminum rims, obviously these are larger than the 16 inch rims, but it turns out that there is a minimal difference in the diameter (and therefore height) between 17.5 inch tires vs. the 16 inch tires.
The biggest difference is their load capacity,

4,805 lb each meaning that at gross weight there is 1,100 pounds of margin on each tire. It is my understanding that having any margin (at gross) on the tires in any Lippert framed rigs from many manufacturers falls into the category of "wishful thinking".
Anything that is " suspended" and rolling "occasionally" needs to be stopped. Again that falls often into the category of "wishful thinking". On this rig six 8,000 lb disk brakes with ABS. No I'm not kidding.

You can see the hydraulic line coming in at the top and the ABS ring sensor just below it. You might protest, "but Master, my Tekonsha salesman has never heard about it". "Ah, but my young padawan, you must open your mind to other possibilities, beyond Lippert, Thor and Tekonsha".

"For the good Masters at ActuLink make an electric over hydraulic actuator which also incorporates an ABS interrupter."

"May the braking force be with you"
Incidentally 8,000 lb Dexter disk hydraulic brakes are in another class in comparison to electrics or even Kodiak disks.

Note there there is another hydraulic line coming out of the bottom of the caliper, it goes the outer part of the caliper. In typical disk brakes the caliper will have two pistons on one side only and the brake pads on the other side are held stationary. Dexter uses "dual caliper", it has 4 pistons (two on each side) squeezing the pads from both sides and therefore being able to exert double the hydraulic force.
There are few more things left on the "techie tour" but that's enough for tonight.

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Old 08-12-2013, 08:01 AM   #34
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Wow is not enough of a word for this rig !!!!!

I WAS excited about the new rv we ordered
I have to go apologize to the DW because it will take a lot of effort to:
sell the house and both cars and rob Fort Knox now !

Thanks for the virtual tour - well done !
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Old 08-12-2013, 11:21 AM   #35
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Wow is not enough of a word for this rig !!!!!

I WAS excited about the new rv we ordered
I have to go apologize to the DW because it will take a lot of effort to:
sell the house and both cars and rob Fort Knox now !

Thanks for the virtual tour - well done !
JBT, yes these are definitely one of the kind with the commensurate price. And lots of folks do sell their house to own one, but remember it does become their house to live in. The other aspect is that these folks are not newbies, have been through a lots of rigs and it is their "last one". I have an older similar unit and when I go to RV shows to "kick tires" it's only to see what the trends are and if the salesmen try to "engage me" with BS I embarrass them.
There is nothing out there with a Lippert frame that can come even close to what I own.
I didn't and I don't post these pictures to stir envy. I am posting these simply to show that in the RV industry exists technology and quality that would be very welcome if at least some of it gravitated to the lower priced units. I don't expect to see much of it in 20 foot $20K "weekender", but in the mid and upper priced rigs there should be enough margins to incorporate some of the things you see in this fifth.
When you get on some of the brand specific forums, you read from "grateful" owners how they "appreciated" the professionalism of the dealer or the company in fixing the frame, or other things. My thought then is "why did the thing break in the first place, or why did it leave the factory with something not working. The industry has a ways to go in that regard.
SpaceCraft does not have dealers to fix crap or act as buffers between the customer and the manufacturer. You are dealing directly with the owners of the company and they do manufacture, smaller, more modestly priced units which you can pull with a 1 ton pickup. What I like about the company that you see the same pride in manufacturing and quality in their "regular" fifths that they are capable of showing in this example.

If you guys would like "couple more tours", here's a unit that another friend of mine bought not too long ago, again another custom SpaceCraft.

The floor!!!!!!!!!!

The front kitchen!!!

And this is my rig.



How do you like the "fleet" of pullers I owned at one time, they are all gone replaced by this one.


42 years ago this was the beginning of the "journey"

and couple years later to this, wow!


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Old 08-12-2013, 11:44 AM   #36
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What's the reason for lack of color on those couple SpaceCrafts? Choice, or recommendation?
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Old 08-12-2013, 12:09 PM   #37
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What's the reason for lack of color on those couple SpaceCrafts? Choice, or recommendation?
What you see on these rigs is not paint but a color of the gelcoat covering the the surface of the fiberglass. I know of at least one more gelcoat color they offer now, but again the whole rig is one color. So it's nor just surface but a very deeply embedded color.
Can't tell you why they don't do the "swirly-burly-girly" stuff popular on other rigs these days, or the so called "full body paint". Having investigated repainting my rig I can tell you that full body paint is between $5-10K, more commonly the "swirly-burly-girly" stuff is a bunch of decals on cheaper rigs.
I guess it's a decision what you want to pay for, glitz does not come free.
I'll take one color gelcoat paint and a SpaceCraft frame, over "swirly-burly-girly" paint and a Lippert frame any day.

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Old 08-12-2013, 03:56 PM   #38
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One of the next units coming out of SpaceCraft will have a different color. Not sure what it is and it's not mine. Probably shouldn't say anything but I wasn't sworn to secrecy that I'm aware of. In the past the gelcoat was sanded off before another color was added. They are trying a new method of having ready to coat product for the build and then sending it off for the Gel Coat application. Hopefully decrease the "Sanding" by 70 percent and a lot of dust that was generated.

Rod
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Old 08-12-2013, 04:20 PM   #39
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I was just curious. I understand gel coat, decals, and full body paint. I wasn't sure if it was a SpaceCraft decision to leave them with minimal decal/color or purely up to the customer.
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Old 08-13-2013, 05:56 PM   #40
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Spacecraft will do full body paint as well. They use CDI, Forest City, Idaho, the same as New Horizons and Winnebago.

The Tuscon actuator is standard product on New Horizons, the ABS is optional. They have had virtually zero issues with it, and in my thinking it is the actuator "of choice" if available for your tow vehicle. The tone rings are on all of the large Dexter discs, as far as I know. So you "could" retrofit.

One thing about the 8K huge Dexter discs....they need to be bled very well and they are hard to do. If they are not done correctly you will have issues with overheating your calipers.

The alternative to the Tuscon setup is a BluDot air/hydraulic actuator. But it requires an air brake truck (HDT or some MDTs) to use. Personally, I like the Tuscon system, even though it is not cheap.
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Old 08-14-2013, 08:34 PM   #41
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Few more "tidbits".
With two bathrooms and the size of the family the the "customary" implement of the products of the plastic tank industry was not going to do. There are five to handle the "ho-ho" and the "hu-ha".

Hence the five valves electrically and remotely opened and closed.
Here's the picture of one of them. To the left of the valve you can see the tank level sensors, done with capacitive sensors all external. No drilling through the tanks to come in contact with "the fluids"

Tanks can be power washed after emptying.

The lower valve does that, the upper valve interconnects two hot water heater for faster throughput. The black and red cables provide power to the macerator.

Our septic system was 100 feet uphill from the rig, the macerator had no problem with that. That contradicts the age old wisdom that certain things only flow downhill.
OK, now to "nicer things".

The incoming fresh water goes through through a sediment filter and pressure regulator. The it is filtered once again through a 5 stage reverse osmosis filter by Aquasafe.

Besides the internal two showers there is and external one too. It became very "useful" when the children "discovered" a stream running through our property and decided to "modify its flow".

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Old 08-15-2013, 02:54 PM   #42
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NICE to see all the technical refinements on Bob's rig! (Henry,,, thanks, for sharing!)

-Don
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