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Old 06-20-2016, 08:27 AM   #15
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A couple of weeks ago, my campsite was across the road from a Class A - one of the occupants (female) occasionally came over to the water pump and got water. We started talking one day about her Class A and she related to me that she and her husband had started off buying an old '99 Class C with the intent of doing some camping. Turned out it had major water issues. They pretty much rebuilt the old '99 and used it for a couple years. When I finally asked her how she had the knowledge to rebuild it, she told me she was a professor - of Structural Engineering!
I have to agree with some of the other posters.... where you are, I would design something completely different than what was originally on the chassis. That would be your best route - IMHO.

Keep us posted.......
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Old 06-25-2016, 05:19 AM   #16
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I love this forum. Thank you everybody for the comments so far.
At this point I have this motor-home torn apart to the floor and now I am working on removing that. I am committed to rebuilding this motor-home but want to personalize it. I did remove the old siding successfully but after much consideration decided to throw it all out. I am thinking of doing a clapboard cedar siding so it looks more like a cabin than a camper. Having said that I understand weight will be an issue if I go crazy so I am going to maintain the original height and width of the RV and do a flat roof. Keep in mind I am not looking for a full time house to live in here just an rv that I can say I built. I have what it takes to go a buy a brand new one I just don't want to. Any suggestions on the best method to frame this to hold up to road use. My plans are to use this a couple times a year to travel with my wife for a week or so and my son to a couple NASCAR events. My wife and I have talked it over and really all we want is a really comfortable bed, a functional bathroom and kitchen and really awesome entertainment system and comfortable reclining chairs. I plan to build the entertainment system in the front attic area over the cab. That's it...no dinette and no carpet. I really just want to make sure this will be safe. I should be getting ready to start the framing process in the next couple of weeks so any suggestions will be gladly received.
Thanks,
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Old 06-25-2016, 06:06 AM   #17
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I'd suggest using fiberglass/filon sheets for your walls, it's pricey, but worth t in my opinion. You can buy it online but the freight charges are very high. Here's one source 6663 - Fiberglass Siding Cut To Length - Price: $25.00 - Factory RV Surplus - 1611 W Bristol St, Elkhart, IN 46514 (800) 325-1461 (574) 262-3327 You would probably be better off finding a local RV repair shop willing to sell you what you need.
I think you're better off putting in "regular" RV windows, also available online.
Here's a link that although not the same type of RV, does have some ideas on framing. https://www.glen-l.com/campers/fairhaven-constr-1.html
I'd suggest building a crowned, rather than a flat roof.
I'm sure you realize you will have a lot more into this project than what it will be worth, no matter how good it turns out.
Best of luck in your undertaking.
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Old 08-27-2016, 03:57 AM   #18
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Continuing with the build

Well I figured I would put an update in about this project I am into..... I have come to realize that factory measuring tapes, levels and squares are all broken and missing numbers lol. Nothing is straight or level on this frame. In fact even the welded extension is a full 1 inch off. That being said I am really happy I decided not to buy a new one and to build my own. This project is quite the puzzle and I am enjoying most of the work involved. I have decided to use pre primed t-111 as the siding because its cheaper than rv siding and I really don't want it to look like a factory RV. I would go with other forms of wood siding but I have to be very conscious of weight and this product will work well given my needs. I have the floor completed and am working on the frames of the walls. I am raising the roof to give more head room and have been posting pics to the google link as I go in case anybody else is doing a project of this type. Any good advise from somebody who has already tackled something like this would be readily accepted.
Thanks for watching as I go through this...
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Old 08-27-2016, 05:52 AM   #19
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Wow - you've brought new meaning to the phrase "total rebuild".
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Old 08-27-2016, 06:05 AM   #20
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do you plan to boondock with it or stay in campgrounds? you said you don't want it to look like a factory rv but the problem you can run into is some campgrounds don't want something that has been altered greatly especially if the plumbing and electrical has been altered and hasn't been recertified.
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Old 08-27-2016, 03:48 PM   #21
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I plan of doing both. I will say that if I can't make this look good then I will most likely get rid of it. I am setting up the mechanics and tanks in a professional manner. I don't want to make an eye sore... I guess I will find out as I progress. I don't think I will spend so much that I would be too upset if I decide this isn't right for me and going out and getting a new one. I already have a new TT but have turned it into a permanent camp on land that I own in the mountains so I am aware of what I am making and am hoping for a conversation piece that I can take to some Nascar races and some beaches around the country.
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Old 08-28-2016, 11:45 AM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pchaz1 View Post
Well I figured I would put an update in about this project I am into..... I have come to realize that factory measuring tapes, levels and squares are all broken and missing numbers lol. Nothing is straight or level on this frame. In fact even the welded extension is a full 1 inch off. That being said I am really happy I decided not to buy a new one and to build my own. This project is quite the puzzle and I am enjoying most of the work involved. I have decided to use pre primed t-111 as the siding because its cheaper than rv siding and I really don't want it to look like a factory RV. I would go with other forms of wood siding but I have to be very conscious of weight and this product will work well given my needs. I have the floor completed and am working on the frames of the walls. I am raising the roof to give more head room and have been posting pics to the google link as I go in case anybody else is doing a project of this type. Any good advise from somebody who has already tackled something like this would be readily accepted.
Thanks for watching as I go through this...
Have you checked the weight on T1-11? Close to 61 lbs a sheet. Add up how many total sheets you will need and you will be surprised how much weight this adds. There is a reason that RV manufacturers use aluminum and fiberglass in their construction. You need to understand what the GVWR is and how fast you will exceed it once you put your family and gear on board with the construction methods you are pursuing.

Hat's off to you for embarking on such an grand project, I'm afraid you may not end up with what you want in the end however. You need to be able to safely drive and stop it.
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Old 08-28-2016, 01:08 PM   #23
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I'm impressed with what you have done so far. Build a tiny house on the frame.
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Old 08-28-2016, 08:33 PM   #24
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Saw your photos - wow!
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Old 08-29-2016, 04:01 AM   #25
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Thanks for all the responses. Manwithtools: I am definetely thoughtful of the weight options. I plan on framing with 1" walls with 1/4" finish ply inside and only the 3/8th osb pre primed t-111 which is significantly less weight than the actual 3/4" ply version. I picked this option knowing its faults but have used it successfully on a camp I own and over the past year without repainting, it looks great. My options are limited because of weight otherwise I would do something like clapboard and really cabin it out. I also plan on using only half the original windows and the interior should work out to be lighter than original given how I plan to build. I am really taking the weight thing into mind with this build. The only real difference with how I am putting this together is the ext siding and I almost forgot I am raising the roof about 18". I figured since both my wife and I are 6' this was a smart move. I am also aware of the height and width restrictions so this isn't even close to a problem. I am hoping by the end of spring 17 that I can embark on an adventure but rushing is not in my plan...I did drive it around my area and as of now it has so much torque that I can't even step on the gas pedal so I need some weight..
Thanks everybody for the responses and I will keep posting pics to that google link as I make progress. Its slow going since I don't have a true end plan yet. I am a contractor/builder by profession but this is so non typical for me lol.
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Old 08-29-2016, 06:33 AM   #26
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pcaz1, glad to hear you've got the weight issue strongly in mind. It would be interesting to get the unit weighed at the stage you have it at now. You could then estimate the weight of everything you are adding to it understand the total outcome.
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Old 08-29-2016, 06:58 AM   #27
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I used cedar instead of T111 when I redid my garage door. The cedar is more expensive but is much, much lighter.
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Old 08-30-2016, 03:38 AM   #28
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So far the weight is the same as from the factory. I used the same method to frame the floor except instead of using pink insulation I used 2" foam board. I really don't have a way to measure the weight of this until its finished. Then I could bring some scrap metal to the dump using the rv lol. That would be sight to see...
I thought of using cedar but am concerned with all the seams. That is a lot of area for air to work its way in while driving down the road. Also, when you consider how our of level this thing is using 4x8 sheets of t-111 makes it pretty easy to float the framing behind it. The box won't be crooked looking when I am done because I plan on using the siding to dictate the overall framing. Every piece is custom cut...
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