18' Off Road family van build.

1Trex
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18' Off Road family van build.

Post by 1Trex » Sun Jun 05, 2016 10:53 pm

Hi all. I'm in the middle of building a van for the family. Decided to build one as we done have the funds to buy one that we like. And couldn't find any layouts that we liked so we took our ideas and put them on paper. Yeah paper sorry no cad drawings hear, I like drawing as it was to scale and gives me time to think about the build as i go. Anyway they weren't to fancy just to get my head around the layout and the overall size, most of the work was drawn on the shed floor. Went with dura gal chassis and alluminium frame,3.5 ton cruise master suspension hopefully won't need 3.5t but i can down grade the springs if needed. Boiler maker by trade so that helps. I'll post up some pics when I work out how to do it. Thought I'd post this up as i have used this forum to help me make a lot of decisions and really helped me out a lot. Especially Bussys' build (Thanks). And it may help someone with there build in the same way.
Cheers Troy.

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Re: 18' Off Road family van build.

Post by 1Trex » Mon Jun 06, 2016 7:51 pm

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Some photos.
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1Trex
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Re: 18' Off Road family van build.

Post by 1Trex » Mon Jun 06, 2016 8:23 pm

Started the build back in October 2015. Working on it whenever i can most weekends and after work, i find it takes longer to workout how where and what's the best way to do a step than it is to do it. I'll scratch my head for 2 hours, sleep on it,then get up in the morning and do it. :)
Went for a 45 degree rear end. 150x50x3 main rails 50x50x2.5 out on the sides
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1Trex
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Re: 18' Off Road family van build.

Post by 1Trex » Mon Jun 06, 2016 8:36 pm

20151017_085756-800x600.jpg
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Photo sizing seems a bit off 800x 600.
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TramcarTrev
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Re: 18' Off Road family van build.

Post by TramcarTrev » Mon Jun 06, 2016 10:09 pm

Most impressive. Will keep you busy for some time I imagine...
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dieseltojo
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Re: 18' Off Road family van build.

Post by dieseltojo » Mon Jun 06, 2016 10:44 pm

Hi Troy.Welcome.
I built a few and know the feeling. Great project and will keep you awake a few nights. :)
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J.REEVES
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Re: 18' Off Road family van build.

Post by J.REEVES » Tue Jun 07, 2016 9:15 am

Hi Troy,
Welcome to the forum, glad to see someone having a go.

It should be a tough van at 18ft and four big wheels on Cruise Master suspension looks like a good choice. I believe the Cruise Master has plenty off adjustment but get those alignments right as it does not take much error to start scrubbing tyres.

JR
:razz:

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Re: 18' Off Road family van build.

Post by 1Trex » Tue Jun 07, 2016 10:59 pm

Thanks fellas, yeah very bussy. Some restless nights spent worrying had i made the right decisions, especially when making the chassis, to make it strong and trying to keep the weight down as mutch as possible. Was concerned when i finish weding the chassis that there is about a 13mm curve in it, from front to back :-x, i think a lot of it came from when i welded the A frame joint together, as i welded it when it was tacked to the main frame. Should have welded it first. But most of it is in front of the axles and gives it some camber. Well thats what i keep telling myself :) .

Yeah JR didn't want to skimp on the suspension, 12" brakes the biggest bearing they have so that shouldn't go anywhere, i hope.
As with the wheel alignment, i have the same set up on my jayco dove but single axle, and i spent a lot of time to try and get it just right, jacking it up adjusting dropping it down pushing it back and forth as per what vehicle components say, but it still wears the tyres mainly the passenger side and every 2nd lug on the mud terrains.

Some more pics.
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J.REEVES
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Re: 18' Off Road family van build.

Post by J.REEVES » Wed Jun 08, 2016 10:26 am

Hi again Troy,
When you post a picture if you keep the size/dimension under 900x900 pixels the picture will display when posting. Naturally the file size needs to be under a certain size also probably under 300K or is it 200k.

Now back to the van,
My van chassis was about 5 to 6mm out of shape from front to rear and when I finished fitting the wheels I quietly towed the chassis around to the panel beaters who had heavy links mounted in the floor so we just chained the chassis to the floor and jacked the appropriate parts of the chassis to straighten it. It is a bit nervy doing this as you need to bend the chassis past its elastic limit.
It is good to get it straight as when the walls go on they will show the error.

Sorry looks like you have addressed the diagonal suggestion below. I should have studied your chassis drawing closer so the following does not really apply.

This is only a suggestion but I was advised to insert diagonals from the cross members that support the suspension. Apparently there is some twisting that goes on and it also helps hold the cross members from distorting when welding.
TrackMaster does this.
This picture is under a Trackmaster that has done a lot of outback work. Trackmaster were using the Sugar Glider suspension but they are closed down now.
Diagonals 2.jpg
This picture is of my van chassis to demonstrate how the diagonals work.
Diagonals.jpg
Your suspension arms are already mounted on a piece of square channel so the diagonal may not be as critical.

JR
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Old Techo
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Re: 18' Off Road family van build.

Post by Old Techo » Wed Jun 08, 2016 10:48 am

JR, at a glance the importance of the diagonals can be envisaged.

Every time the brakes are applied the suspension will apply a large twisting force horizontally along the cross-member.

The outer pivot/bush is attached solidly to the side rail but the inner pivot/bush will try to push the cross-member forward and bend it in the centre. Similarly when striking potholes. The diagonals prevent this cross-member bending.
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