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Old 09-21-2009, 06:12 PM   #21
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Norm,

Another simple way to turn drawings displayed on your computer screen into a .jpg file is to copy the screen to the clipboard using the “Alt+PrtScrn” short-cut keys.
Then run your Paint program and paste the clipboard into Paint (e.g., via “Edit > Paste” command or “Ctrl+V” short-cut keys..
Then save is out as a .jpg file using the “File > Save As” command.

Looking forward to seeing your trailer design and construction develop.

Thanks for sharing.
Hutch
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Old 09-22-2009, 02:01 PM   #22
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Beam

I've been playing around with various adhesives to allow me to glue two or more studs together. In the mean time I have built up one beam without glue just to get a feel for it.



This is a prototype of one of two side beams. It gives us an idea of how big this trailer will be compared to our present trailer. As well this beams does not include the additional hitch length, 3 feet or so.

What's particularly impressive is how light the beam is. My wife could easily lift and hold it

When we were in Labrador we stopped at a campground in Labrador City, a city of 7000, second largest in Labrador, but a good 1000 miles from any real city. Yet the owner of the campground was building a 24 foot trailer in his back yard.

When we arrived he had gone into town to pick up and axle and springs. The attitude of the owner and the availability of parts says something about Labrador and her people.

I wish I had thought of this at the beginning of the summer. I'm going to hate to leave.
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Old 09-22-2009, 03:10 PM   #23
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Re: Beam

Quote:
Originally Posted by Honda03842
I've been playing around with various adhesives to allow me to glue two or more studs together. In the mean time I have built up one beam without glue just to get a feel for it.
Take a look at Gorilla Glue when you can. I have been using it for all kinds of repairs this summer.

I don't know how it would perform in a metal-to-metal joint or in a wood-to-metal joint, especially in the base frame of the trailer where it will be subjected to a number of major stresses. But, it's stronger and bonds to more surfaces than a lot of other products out there.

I think Gorilla Glue may be very good when it comes time to build the SIP's and cabinetry. I can tell you that once a wood-to-wood joint cures, you'll break the wood long before you break the Gorilla Glue. It should work just as well in the SIP's where you are bonding wood to insulation or insulation to plastic or filon.

There are also some industrial adhesives and epoxies that may do what you want much better, but they may be a bit harder to find.
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Old 09-22-2009, 07:27 PM   #24
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Adhesives

I use gorilla glue for wood also. I tried it on the steel and it came apart. Liquid nails has recommended something used for marble.

I will use gorilla glue where ever I can. My goal is to make the interior cabinets as light as possible. Like the shell and frame I want the cabinets to be structural. There are overhead cabinets virtually all around and if there glued in they can also act like a beam in the structure as can the floor cabinets.

I did use an adhesive formulated for foam and it seemed to work well. I reinforced a metal beam with foam and it really stiffened it up, I may use foam in all the cross members between the three long beams.

I want jalousie windows and have not found them new yet but I might buy a third trailer for parts.

I'm having fun,
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Old 09-23-2009, 11:09 AM   #25
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Norm, we have a little 1987 Saturn Sunline too and we have camped, I believe, every weekend this summer. I am enjoying your post on building your dream camper. I bet you hardly sleep at night with that brain of yours not shutting down....anyway...have fun and I can't wait to see your final product...who knows you may have to open a factory so we can buy one!
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Old 09-23-2009, 05:25 PM   #26
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For Sure

JB and Susan,
For sure I can tell you they'll be no factory. I've done that a few times in my life and when I retired I said I'd never work again. My former business partner tried for the first 5 years of our RV adventure. Before he died last year he told me that I was right not to return to work, something my Doctor also told me. My doctor now offers some patients the following cure/advice "Get an RV and hit the road".

For you adhesive mavens I used Construction adhesive PL375 and it seems to do a good job bonding steel to steel. Today I tried Liquid Nails Marble adhesive. Both available everywhere.

One advantage of not building the trailer immediately is that it will give me time to mull over the design and solutions.

Norm
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Old 09-26-2009, 07:04 AM   #27
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Frame ready

Steve,
Today I tested the strength of a floor joist, the members that run between the beams.

I placed a 5 foot section between two saw horses and put my weight on it and it immediately caved in.

I took a similar beam that had a piece of 1 inch thick pink foam board glued to it, filling it's c-section, using PL-300 adhesive. It easily supported my near 200 pounds.

Conclusions, sips can be very strong, and keeping the web of a beam perpindicular to the load maximizes strength.

The only undefined element is the strength of the bond between the frame and the floor. I hope to test that today.

Norm
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Old 10-05-2009, 05:34 PM   #28
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Norm,
I've been away from the site for a long time (too long) and just got around to start catching up on things. Kudos to you on your adventure/project. You are definately an inspiration.
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Old 10-05-2009, 08:23 PM   #29
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Thank you for the kind words. We're preparing to close up until the spring when we'll start construction. I completed my last test on the floor this week bonding the floor with PL 375 adhesive to the floor beams. A super bond that can only be destroyed by destroying the floor plywood.

I'll be writing again in the spring.

Norm
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Old 10-06-2009, 04:13 PM   #30
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Old 10-06-2009, 06:37 PM   #31
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Re: Beam

Quote:
Originally Posted by Honda03842
I've been playing around with various adhesives to allow me to glue two or more studs together. In the mean time I have built up one beam without glue just to get a feel for it.



This is a prototype of one of two side beams. It gives us an idea of how big this trailer will be compared to our present trailer. As well this beams does not include the additional hitch length, 3 feet or so.

What's particularly impressive is how light the beam is. My wife could easily lift and hold it
Hi Norm

First off, more power to ya! Go Norm Go!

However your TT frame may be pushing the limits of ultra light weight to new horizons and challenges. If I understand your concept correctly, using home metal studs as a structural members of a TT frame, I myself as a friend would express caution. I know you want light weight, however the actual frame and the floor make the entire foundation the TT is supported by and how well it will resist twisting as it rolls down the road and over bumps and pot holes.

Let me throw this out as an option.

I do belive Dexter Axle makes TT's frames for Jayco and maybe even other TT builders. Dexter customer service is very good and they have given me very good help so I'll pitch a plug for them.

They may be able to offer an ultra light weight TT frame and axle with brakes you can purchase. Then use that to build your TT on top of.

Hope this helps and good luck

John
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Old 10-06-2009, 07:40 PM   #32
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Frame

John,

Thanks for the idea. I've made my career on doing things a different way partially because that's where the fun and the opportunity are. Someone told me that happiness results from maximizing fun.

If it doesn't work out I'll just have to fix it and have an opportunity for more fun. There is no great loss other than time as long as no one is hurt. It's great to be retired, I just hope I'm not to old to finish the job.

To meet the twist concerns, my goal is to turn the entire trailer into a 7 foot high, 8 foot wide, 18 foot long box beam, a single entity that is glued and screwed together. Additionally all over head cabinets and counters will also be glued and screwed together, to the floor, walls and ceiling, further rigidizing the structure, virtually making the trailer walls at least 1.5 feet thick. Even the grey tank(s) are glued to the floor and frame members.

I can not say I am confident of intitial success, often I stumble a little on the way but usually get there. You can be sure that most of our winter hiatis will be spent absorbing warmth, considering and reconsidering the solution and possible a small amount of test building.

As to axles, Dexter does make a good product and I have their catalogs.

I once built a 50 foot diameter, 25 foot high geodesic dome. The panels were made of 1/2 inch thick plywood triangles 8 feet on a side. When this thing had it seams fiberglassed it was unbelievably stiff. I admit to counting on a lot of adhesive.

I'll be on a glue high all summer,

Norm
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Old 10-09-2009, 02:27 PM   #33
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Vent Free Heater

We've decided not to use a traditional propane heater and are opting for a vent free propane heater. I was aware of these heaters and had used one in a small geodesic dome I built. After reading an excellent article in this month's Escapee magazine I decided it's the way to go for me.

The purchase price is about half, uses virtually no electricity compared to 8-12 amps making dry camping more viable, is more efficient since a much higher percent of the heat goes into the room though it does add moisture, and uses about 50% the propane for the same heating. On top of this it is virtually silent compared to the roar of the typical RV gas heater.

Since it uses oxygen from the room for safety it contains an oxygen depletion sensor with automatic shutoff. As a result this type of heater is limited to about 6000 ft altitude.

There are two principal varieties, catalytic and blue flame. In both cases there is no exposed flame though the catalytic plates can be very hot. In the case of the blue flame, the flame is behind a ceramic/glass window.
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Old 10-16-2009, 09:40 AM   #34
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New Travel Trailer

Hi Norm,
I'm not sure if you have seen this trailer, but my wife and I happened to stop and take a look at one on our way up north. This company is using new technology and materials for construction. Although somewhat expensive it puts in alot of things standard like heated tanks, electric awning, etc. We are considering this company because of the weight and new materials used. They have a 30 foot with slide coming in at 4500 lbs. No one builds a trailer like Sunline but they are no longer with us so take a look at this.
www.earthboundrv.com

Tervio
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Old 10-16-2009, 11:00 AM   #35
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Trevio,
Very nice looking rigs. Still way too heavy for us. I want something that can be towed by our Honda CRV. Ideally that means 2500 pounds, certainly not more than 2800.

Though it's not the whole reason, the price of gasoline is going in a nothing but higher direction and I want to continue our seven month a year RV trips.

There are two factors driving up the price of gas/diesel. One is the intentionally weakening dollar at about 10% per year and the potential that Cap and Trade legislation will pass adding tons of taxes to the price even though it's been cooling for 11 years and there's no global warming.

On top of these concerns is simply the fun of making something; I always liked Lincoln Logs as a kid. Some of the relatives think I'm crazy; others know I'm still a kid and like to have fun.

Thanks for the tip, I always learn something from all the info provided.

Happy RVing,
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Old 10-16-2009, 04:38 PM   #36
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The web site @ earthbound rv has a construction pdf which shows some of their ideas, composites, axles, dual pane windows, etc. These may help you in your quest.

Tervio
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Old 10-16-2009, 06:05 PM   #37
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I went thru the web site in detail. Very interesting. I can not justify thermopane (double) windows due to weight plus we've come to love the jalousie windows because they open 95%. But it's very interesting and extremely good looking.
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Old 10-17-2009, 01:57 PM   #38
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Norm,
On pg. 23 of the construction pdf you will see that the windows they use are very light also two pane for insulating value. Also the norco torsion axle is like the Dexter in principal.

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Old 10-17-2009, 07:07 PM   #39
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Windows

I looked up the windows on the Internet and if they're the ones I found they are unbelievably expensive not to mention they are not glass but acrylic accounting for their light weight.

I was thinking of buying a Sunline 'parts trailer' to save money.
As to axles, I've looked both at the torsion and spring axles and do not know which is better. I have the drexel catalogues and hope to figure it out.

Norm
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Old 10-18-2009, 10:14 PM   #40
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I would be very interested in what you come up with and build. Since Sunline is now out of business I can't see how or why anyone would object.
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