MY 5.1 METER TWIN AXLE VAN.

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Saturn 5
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MY 5.1 METER TWIN AXLE VAN.

Post by Saturn 5 » Mon Nov 25, 2013 11:29 pm

My build has begun: Well I first cut and placed the two main chassis rails back in April 2013.
I have been looking at buying a van for the last couple of years but cannot find what I wanted and also the prices are too high now that I have been forced into early retirement.
Before I start I'll give a little background. Motorcycles have been my life long passion, owning and riding since buying my first bike in 1966, touring around the Eastern states as well as S.A. In all 310000 kms of touring freedom.
That all changed when on New Years day 2006 I found I had abdominal cancer. The following ray treatment and major surgery, saw the extraction of 3.75 kgs of tumour (retroperitoneal sarcoma) entwined all through, also taking a kidney, spleen and some bowel. This all leads to me having chronic pain and low levels of stamina. So thats the story as to why I need to a purpose built van that will carry my bike inside and will be my mobile base in which I can stay put when I'm crook.
The build: ….. Side view.
The 5.1van will look a little different to the standard, so in elevation view it will have a roof which slopes to the rear by approx 130mm and the rear wall tho vertical, will have a roof overhang of 250mm. The side ' blade' walls therefore will slope inwards starting from top to go inwards meet the bottom and so will look like "blades" tapering from the top. I was influenced by the look of some new 'vans' such as the Hyundai and VW transporters which are just perfect to the shape I have had in my mind since some two years ago.
The chassis:
This is a departure from the standard, I have seen only one such build in the magazine in the last two years. The two main chassis rails are 150X50X 2.5 mm and the cross members I'll call joists are 50X50X2mm at 600mm centres with a couple of extra at 3mm where the bike will ride, strapped down in the kitchen. The joists sit on top of the chassis rails and extend full width to the outer wall. The joists and outriggers are one and the same so to speak. There will be various supports as well as two cross beams to stop the chassis rails from laying over. An additional cross piece will be near the hitch. I have yet to weld on a full perimeter piece of 50X25X2mm to fit under the outside ends of the 'joists'. Together with other gussets,brackets etc this perimeter piece will help to quieten down any flex when travelling.
The suspension is 2000k roller rocker twin axle from Huntsman. These will attach to hefty gal lintels 100X75X6mm @ 2400mm long.
Tomorrow I'm off to the galvanisers with the hitch, hangers and a couple of frog mouth pieces plus a few others. So if all the stars align next weekend will FINALLY see the chassis turned over.

I know a picture is worth a thousand words. I have to sort the progress images from two cameras and put them onto my computer so I can put them up for all to see.
I welcome all to comment as this build unfolds. Please feel free to comment when and if you think I'm wrong. Don't be too shy so call a spade a spade if I could d it better. I really do accept constructive criticism, OH and the odd pat on the back too. :D :D

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J.REEVES
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Re: MY 5.1 METER TWIN AXLE VAN.

Post by J.REEVES » Tue Nov 26, 2013 9:05 am

Hi Saturn,
After having the procedures you have described on your body it’s amazing you can build anything so must admirer your determination.

Looking forward to see some photos, laying the joists across the top sounds different but why not!
The body shape you have described need some drawings as it is a bit hard to visualise so get to it.

P.S. Would be nice to know your first name and maybe where you are roughly located.

JR
:razz:

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dieseltojo
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Re: MY 5.1 METER TWIN AXLE VAN.

Post by dieseltojo » Tue Nov 26, 2013 9:48 am

Hi Saturn 5,
You have a good outlook and it great to have a worthwhile project. Indeed a quality of life project.
There are many members here that have done well in the self construction of their vans, and we will follow with interest.
I now have to note that I cannot accept ownership, truth, quality, or veracity, of articles I may quote off the internet.
1929 Pop Top
Paul & Trudy. Plumber & Plumberess

Saturn 5
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Re: MY 5.1 METER TWIN AXLE VAN.

Post by Saturn 5 » Tue Nov 26, 2013 7:34 pm

Thanks for the replies John and Paul, please call me George. Ha, procedures JR? Forgot to tell you about the spinal fusion shoulder reconstruction and hernia etc. I won't be lying when I tell you I'm looking for a younger body that somebody doesn't have a need for anymore, mine is no good. :mrgreen: .
Reading back my post, it could have been better written so will get to the pics on this weekend. Just to confuse you a little before the pics are up, I'll describe the wall construction. In lieu of meranti I'm using 50X19 plywood studs and nogging ripped from a 2400X1200 ply sheet. The top and bottom plates ( all terms from the building trade) are treated pine decking so as to inhibit any possible rot, tho my build will be much better than that I've seen posted elsewhere on this forum. Bloody disgraceful no other way to describe it. The stud/plate joints will be held with glued ply biscuits. Ply will be glued to the wall frames together with some panel pin tacking to hold while drying. The side wall frames will be in the same profile as the outside van wall in the usual way.

To support the roof ceiling joists (50mm steel top hat sections ) a 50X25 pressed metal "C" channel will be fixed all around the inside front and top edge of the plywood wall. The ceiling joists will lock into the side of the channel, screw fixed top and bottom. The joists therefor will not sit on the top in the usual way but into the sides of the 'C' channels.. Can't really describe all the details but for now I'll say this method of fixing will allow me to install all my wiring anywhere in the van without the need to cut any slots or rebates into either studs or top and bottom plates.
This is probably getting confusing so I 'll rely on some later pics to explain. I must say here JC that when I hatched the idea to build my own van I thought I can't be the first, and OH joy! when I found your excellent comprehensive build on this site. Now I won't attempt to meet your standard and that of Bussy too but I hope to give enough detail that will explain the build I have done. The bare chassis, simple bearers and joists construction took me, working alone, eight hours to build. The chassis rails I levelled, cut and bent at home but the joists were cut to length for me by Metal land now One Steel. I simply had to set them out and weld into place. To-day I took the 3500 kg hitch, it's base plate, 6 suspension hangers and 2 frog mouth cleat plates to the galvanisers. Ready Friday (i hope) 22kgs all up and cost should be about $122 or maybe a little less. Turning it over the weekend.

The Keating interview is on, gotta go.

Good health safe travels

George W. (J.C. I'm at Winmalee)

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Re: MY 5.1 METER TWIN AXLE VAN.

Post by Milton477 » Wed Nov 27, 2013 10:05 pm

George,
You deserve a medal just for considering building a van after what you have been through never mind following through to a build. I'm pleased that you are breaking the "we have always done it that way" mold also.

I'm looking forward to the pics of your build. Good luck.
Rory

Saturn 5
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Re: MY 5.1 METER TWIN AXLE VAN.

Post by Saturn 5 » Wed Nov 27, 2013 11:32 pm

Thank you Rory for your kind words. I have just recently caught up with your impressive build in the other section. Gee there is some lovely work going on in garages around this country, you blokes sure set a high standard.
Before I waffle on, something I'm about to do on my chassis that you may care to consider. You are almost sure to know that the welding process virtually vaporises the dura gal inside the hollow steel sections directly behind the external welds. I plan to seal each of these hollow sections and place 100-200 cc's of sump oil to slosh around forever inside. The hole thru which I squirt the oil via a syringe can be sealed up with an appropriate sized screw. Prior to doing away with the rotisserie it would slosh on all four sides on turning it over.
I try to do a little bit each day but usually it ends up several days in between although I have plenty of time, not stamina. To day I gave a first coat of paint to (only) one internal wall sheet. That's all I could manage tho I'm keen as mustard to get them all done. When I say " paint" that too is a little different. Instead of polyurethane with or without stain I want to have a bright interior and so have decided on what is called "liming". Do you know of it? I had a tin of water based undercoat tinted to a particular shade of a creamy colour that I wanted. This is then watered down to about 5:1 and quickly coated all over the sheet just with a 4" brush. Then it is ragged ( start with a very lightly damp rag) off leaving the timber grain showing but coloured whatever you choose. A lovely change to the usual staining and you can choose any colour in the book and can choose the depth of colour depending on how much you dilute. Water base has the slight drawback in that it raises the grain a bit more than oil base and so needs to be more lightly sanded than with the oil base. With diluted ( turps) oil base you need to work a bit faster than water base but I don't have the strength to work that fast but water base is still just fine. If this interests you experiment with coloured sample pots but when lightly sanding only use the white Aluminium oxide paper not that green or yellow rubbish.
I must crash now but I now have your project too to follow and I have to say it gives me a lot of enjoyment reading the progress.

Good health drive safe,

George W.

P.S. I must apologise to J. Reeves in elevating him to "J C" in my previous post, I saw the goof but can't find the Edit button on this forum.

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J.REEVES
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Re: MY 5.1 METER TWIN AXLE VAN.

Post by J.REEVES » Thu Nov 28, 2013 12:57 pm

Hi George,
“Before I waffle on, something I'm about to do on my chassis that you may care to consider. You are almost sure to know that the welding process virtually vaporises the dura gal inside the hollow steel sections directly behind the external welds. I plan to seal each of these hollow sections and place 100-200 cc's of sump oil to slosh around forever inside. The hole thru which I squirt the oil via a syringe can be sealed up with an appropriate sized screw. Prior to doing away with the rotisserie it would slosh on all four sides on turning it over.”

If you are using true DuraGal there is no gal inside only on the outside but most other products do have the gal inside and out like say Supagal.

I personally would use fish oil if I was going to use anything inside the RHS.

Because my chassis is not a fully dipped chassis I chose to completely seal the chassis rails but that is not as easy as you may think because the floor is screwed through the chassis and feeding wires in the front of the ‘A’ frame will need special consideration.

P.S. When you make a post you have only 5 to 10 minutes to edit then the edit selection is removed.
Also if you are going to post any photos keep them below 900x900 pixels and also file size down some or they will only display as a file that will need to be opened by the reader.

JR
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Saturn 5
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Re: MY 5.1 METER TWIN AXLE VAN.

Post by Saturn 5 » Thu Nov 28, 2013 2:57 pm

Thanks JR for the reminder, I have an unopened litre tin of Fish oil put away ..umm … blimey 15 years ago left over from a car restoration. I'll dig it out, it shouldn't have rusted out while stored away. :D
No work on the van today just some adjustment to the leaf spring cleats which were all needing straightening square across the leafs and then properly clamped shut. Not a real satisfying job in the spring factory for sure but still it deserves to be done right.
I placed the rolla-rocker springs out in the weather today. This will clean and weather them a little before I get to them with a wire brush or flap wheel. I'll paint them properly before they are finally installed. The axles too need cleaning up. I will always have a nagging thought in the back of my mind if I know things such as a poorly painted or rusty axle are down below. Things like that will always bug me. For instance after more than 40 years in housing construction I can still drive by a house or villa I built say 30 or so years ago and remember perhaps the bedroom wall wouldn't line up properly and is 1/2 '' out of line or a back door should have had an extra hinge put on it. So the van must be done right, particularly now I have such a high standard to match.
Will see what tomorrow brings.
Cheers
George W.

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Rolex
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Re: MY 5.1 METER TWIN AXLE VAN.

Post by Rolex » Thu Nov 28, 2013 3:54 pm

I use motorcycle chain lube for rust proofing.

With the plastic nozzle you can get into lots of nooks and crannies and then it will dry and set.

Of course it won't work every where but I have used it on the U bolts, hubs and axel of all my trailers and on my boat trailer to keep the salt water at bay, after a week or three a dust builds up on the grease and it is no longer a problem if the dog goes under the trailer.
I'm not ready to be a adult
The adventure begins where the tar ends.
"A man turns his back on the comforts of home... to ride off alone.
When the dust all settles and the story is told, history is made by the side of the road"

Saturn 5
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Re: MY 5.1 METER TWIN AXLE VAN.

Post by Saturn 5 » Thu Nov 28, 2013 8:12 pm

G'day Rolex, I haven't seen you post on the other site for a while. Chain lube, yes that sure sticks will keep it in mind. The suspension I may do In POR paint. That product is tougher than any other and it sticks like gal. But pricey tho. There is a limit on costs. Re motorcycles I haven't been on a trip in ages, can't do it. Last attempt was to go to the Bingarra gathering and ended with another Ambo ride, this time to Gunnadah Hosp. ATM, I only ride to the local shops.
Cheers and keep in touch

Saturn 5 :mrgreen:

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