18' Off Road family van build.

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

Post by 1Trex » Wed Jun 08, 2016 9:26 pm

Thanks for the tip on the photos JR. I originally posted them at 800x 600 but they were a bit out of shape. So I found the size of them and resized at the same ratio but they must of been a bit to large. I wondered why they didn't work.
As for the curve in the chassis, I decided to leave it as it is mostly in the front 2m, and it curves so the hitch is down so it gives the van a bit of camber, mutch the same as a semi trailer is when unloaded, so I'm hoping when I start loading the the front up some of it will flex out. I trialed this by placing the batteries up the front and a small amount came out. I can also hide most of it in the slope of the roof and the checker plate lower half.
Old Techo I can see what you mean by the arms trying to snap it in half. Also i made the diagonals tie into the upper spring mounts to transfer some of the weight out. I have seen the cruise master set up on a new van and the diagonals were lucky to be 200mm long :???:
More pics.
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1Trex
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Re: 18' Off Road family van build.

Post by 1Trex » Wed Jun 08, 2016 9:36 pm

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

Post by 1Trex » Thu Jun 09, 2016 7:25 pm

One thing i found when welding the dura gal, is no matter what i done if i didn't gring off the gal before welding i would get a series of gas holes right in the middle of the weld, so i would have to grind all the weld out and re weld it :evil: . I was lucky i found this out early so there was only a few joints that had to be done. But from then on it was a matter of marking out were each joint went, grinding the gal off then re marking and tacking it on, very time consuming. I have noticed on new caravans with dura gal chassis the same thing happened but they have just left it. Pretty shonky!. I see Bussy was achieving nice welds on his van, but not sure if he was grinding or not or he knows some secret that i don't know? We use a mig wire at work VERTICORE it a flux cored wire that still requires a shielding gas, not the gas less stuff you'd use for welding up gates, we use it for filling heavy plate and out of position work and it can handle a lot of surface contamination.
I might try it on the dura gal and see how it goes. I think it would save a lot of time on someone's build.
More pics
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Old Techo
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Re: 18' Off Road family van build.

Post by Old Techo » Thu Jun 09, 2016 8:00 pm

G'day Troy,

You are doing a great job of relating your project and posting lots of pics, but....... many are spoiled by being sideways and/or the wrong aspect ratio :(

I've had a lot of practice posting pics here so maybe I can help, if you wish.

What method are you using to edit and post pics?
Regards, Old Techo
2007 Prado Grande Diesel Auto
2004 Roadstar Limited Edition

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

Post by 1Trex » Thu Jun 09, 2016 9:03 pm

Thanks Old Techo
I am using my phone for the posts, as that is were all my photos are and i have a app that resizes the photos. Thing is i can't find the right ratio. I was using a custom ratio of 800x600 but they weren't right. So i tried dividing the original photo size 5312x2988 x 6 which gave me 885x498 still not right. So i chose one of the options it gives you 480x853 which seems the best so far. As for being sideways thats my bad :oops: as my photos are all over the place. Is there a way to see the photos before you submit?

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

Post by Old Techo » Thu Jun 09, 2016 9:25 pm

Troy, I HATE working with pics on a smartphone :evil:

On a proper poota there are plenty of graphics programs, like the free http://www.irfanview.com/ that I always endorse, and it is very easy to resize a pic using whichever dimension is the greatest. Set it to 900 pixels (forum max) and tick a box to retain aspect ratio so the other dimension follows suit.

So if a landscape was 3000 x 2000 just set the 3000 to 900. If portrait was 2400 x 3600 set the 3600 to 900. This will give you the biggest displayed image.

If you are stuck with the smartphone then maybe a better app is needed. Dunno why they call them apps - they are just computer programs the same as on a proper poota. So the first obvious step is to set the orientation the right way around then the biggest dimension to no more than 900 pixels, if your app quotes pixels. 800 x 600 is the most common landscape size.

As for checking your pics before posting just click on 'preview' being the button next to the 'submit' button.
Regards, Old Techo
2007 Prado Grande Diesel Auto
2004 Roadstar Limited Edition

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

Post by J.REEVES » Thu Jun 09, 2016 9:44 pm

Hi Troy,
I will leave the picture aspects to OT but be warned he is not too impressed with modern phones.
P.S. I told you OT must have posted while I was writing my post.

You certainly look like you know what you are doing very nice.

I welded Duragal with a MIG, 0.9mm wire, CO2 gas and no grinding but I cannot remember how many times I filled my shoes with hot stuff but never had any issue with gas holes in the Duragal unless the day was windy then I would just call it quits for the day. If I required a very good looking weld I would grind the gal off but generally most welds went OK.
Also used anti splatter spray on the MIG head and around some of the welds or sometimes used cooking oil spray.

As you are a boiler maker, welding the chassis should be a piece of cake, I was a fitter and only used a welder to secure bolt heads or oxy to cut bolts off.

JR
:razz:

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Re: 18' Off Road family van build.

Post by 1Trex » Sat Jun 11, 2016 9:59 pm

Thanks for the help OT. I think I may have worked it out, the program automatically picks the right aspect ratio for you just have to pick the size you want, under 900. All i have to do is get them up the right way :) .
As for the welding JR I have always used argoshield the co2 may handle the gal better, the holes I was getting weren't like normal perocity lots of small holes, but a strip of larger holes. But i know what you mean about the sparks.
As for the fitter, you must have been one of the better ones. The one's I work with in the steel works don't do that kind of thing. That's boily work :) . As for knowing what I'm doing I dont know about that, but I'm pretty good at winging it. You may have noticed I have already stolen some of your and Bussys ideas :) .
Ok back to the van. The under slung wheel carriers are cut down 60 series carriers cross members and winch $50 from pick a part, bargain. As for the flooring I have gone with 12mm plywood, its made from burch wood and has about 10 layers, very strong and the same properties as marine ply, but a bit heavy. 2 Battery's 165AH to be mounted underneath on the inside of the rails.
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1Trex
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Re: 18' Off Road family van build.

Post by 1Trex » Sun Jun 12, 2016 9:34 pm

More photos.
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Welding aluminium for the first time with the tig. I have welded aluminium with a mig a few times and found it very painful, you start off very cold and by the end of the weld way to hot, and if you are not careful you can lose the lot and end up with a very big hole. I find it easier to turn it right up, and place a series of spot welds to form the weld, very messy and not a very good look, but with the tig so much more control over the heat and a very nice looking weld, only bad points are the timing of when to add the wire, to early and it balls up and can touch the tungsten or it won't even stick to the parent metal, and you get a big blob on the end of your wire, to late and you end up with a hole. Getting the hang of it though and plenty of practice to come.
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With the drawbar I made it 1700mm from the front of the van, just enough room for a 450mm wide tool box, the 2 gas bottles, jockey wheel, and clearance for the hand brake.
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Before i painted i sealed all gaps that weren't welded with polyurethane to stop water ingress then the Chassis was painted with an etch primer then a 2 pac zinc rich industrial primer then the structural silver on top.
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Milton477
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Re: 18' Off Road family van build.

Post by Milton477 » Sun Jun 12, 2016 10:31 pm

Troy,

Excellent job, it's good to see someone who knows what he is doing. No design or dodgy welding there. I built mine using duragal & I marked & ground each weld. It was an absolute PITA.

Just a question about your suspension mounting. I also used Cruisemaster & I welded a stiffener beam into the chassis as per Crusemaster's instructions. I have taken the liberty of including the section of the drawing.
Stiffener Beam.JPG
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