Friday, January 09, 2009

Camper Modifications

A couple of people have asked why I haven't been fishing lately, and if I plan to even go fishing thsi winter. I have never been a huge fan of winter fishing, especially since most of the days I do end up going tend to be windy, below freezing and snowing - just seems like my luck. SO this year I have decided to tie flies, sell/make some fly tying displays, and work on my camper and add some modifications.

I have a 2002 Jayco 8 ft pop-up tent trailer. Nothing fancy, actaully it is quite boring - no battery, no furnace and no fridge - stripped down.

I haven't done a whole lot to it, cut a hole in the floor for a vent, and bought a bunch of trinkets for it - like a heater, new faucet, replaced the lock and a few other nice to haves. Having camped in the thing for 3 summers now, I know what I have and what is missing. This year I hope to add a bunch of upgrades to make the camper more usable. I have a buddy at work that is anxious to help out and he is very handy.

These are some of the mods I want to do (I will post before and after pics as I do each mod):

Add a cooler/counter space/detachable sink
The current swing sink folds up and over so the beds can fold in over the top of them. The "icebox" is vertical so you can't put ice and anything in there - so you have to carry a cooler with you anyways. Adding a removable cooler into the cabinet will be more practical and we will actually use it. The sink can be yanked out and made portable - the faucet can be less rigid. The current icebox has a drain at the bottom that I could use to drain the cooler/sink.

PVC tubes for storage
Easy thing to do - buy some 4" pvc, add a permanent cap on one end, add a removeable cap on the other. Mount the pvc along the bottom of the camper - you can shove the outside carpet, extension cords, etc in there rather than taking up valuable space inside.

Roof racks
I'd like to add roof racks to carry gear and a kayak/caneo - seems like a lot of space on top that is unused.

Carpet tiles
Carpet tiles are cheap and easy to clean, and the lenolium floor is getting old.

Paper towel holder
Need to add a built in paper towel holder - these things seem to fall all over.

Drink holders
You can't have enough - and in the new counter space where the sink was I will add cup holders in various places.

This is a big one - my buddy has some ideas, but I would like to add an in wall unit that runs on propane.

Make table across bench seats
The table in the middle needs to go - not enough room in the camper to move around in there and have a full sized table. I'll cut two pies of plywood and lay them across the opening - this way you can stack them up and lay them across and only take up half the space. Easy fix.

Cut bench covers in half, and add hinges so easier access
The storage under the couches is covered by a solid plywood sheet - I'll cut them in half so you don't have to pick up the entire piece of wood, and add hinges so you can just pull up.

Add battery/battery charger
This will be a huge thing because of the investment in battery, charger, wiring, solar panel??, etc. But it needs to be done - and Mark is pretty good at these kinds of things. I'll have to mount the battery box to the hitch as well.

Cut grill mount to make less heavy and shorter
I made it wayyy to long - cut it down for easier storage and less weight.

Fix grill support bar
The support bar is lame at best - needs to be fixed.

Jug for gray water
Sounds dumb, but I need to store my grey water better - I saw a mod that has a cool

Mount battery op Radio where fire extinguisher was
I have a spot where the fire extinguisher holder broke - perfect spot to add a battery operated (or wired) radio or CD player. I'm not sure why I hadn't thought of that sooner.

Trash holder
No place to store trash - I just need to add some kind of trash recepticle that I can add a plastic bag to when we camp.

Add hooks to hang utensils from grill
Just simple stuff to make things more accessible.

Clasps on door to hold tools
Sounds dumb, but the crank for the top is always under a pile of stuff - I can easily add a latch to the door so it is always in the same place and easily accessible.

Add a level for horizontal stableness
I already have one for vertical stablizing - but not one for horizontal - which I have found is pretty important too.

Let me know if you guys think of anything else I need! I'm excited to spend some time on this project - I need a new project!


wyoflyfish said...

If you do the furnace, also add a simple 9v carbon monoxide detector. Peace of mind for next to nothing $ wise.

Looks like an ambitious list! My problem is I try to do those things and always get sidetracked with trips etc. and it never gets done. I have lame follow through :)

Brandon said...

I sure will get a CO detector - that freaks me out the most. The heater is supposed to have a sensor on it and shut off automatically, but obviously the better prepared I am the better.

I'll do most of these during the winter - it'll keep me closer to home with the new baby. It'll make my wife happier too.

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