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Old 03-10-2016, 11:34 PM   #1
foxharp
 
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Default simple Transit conversion, with bed hoist

I've learned a lot from the folks here at sprinter-source, so it's only right that I try and give a bit back, even though in the end we settled on a high-roof Transit instead of a Sprinter for our camper van.

In the end, for us, it came down to not being thrilled with the idea of a diesel, and wanting the highest ceiling clearance possible. So we ordered the Transit in early November, and picked it up in early January.

The reason for the high ceiling requirement was, as I may have mentioned here previously, that we wanted to put in a bed hoist, so the bed could be raised to the ceiling when not in use. (Other requirements on the bed were that it have a mostly "real" mattress, and that we not have to make and un-make the bed every evening and morning.)

I'm happy to report that we've recently attained the bed goal. I won't duplicate a lot of text and photos here, but rather I'll just include this link to our minimalist (like the van) project web page: http://projects.foxharp.net/the_van. I'll just include one "teaser" picture here.

I'll probably try and do a more technical write-up than that, specifically of the piece-parts I used for the bed, sometime in the future. In the meantime, feel free poke me for answers if you're curious about something.

paul
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File Type: jpg frame_at_ceiling.jpg (436.1 KB, 361 views)
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Old 08-04-2016, 05:58 PM   #2
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Default Re: simple Transit conversion, with bed hoist

Great job!! Wondering if you have the ability to level bed, when the vehicle isn't, and does the bed sway a little when moving around on it since it is suspended
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Old 08-05-2016, 07:01 AM   #3
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Default Re: simple Transit conversion, with bed hoist

Great write up and photos on your web page Paul, learnt a lot from it. Missed it in March but so glad I have seen it now, especially the hoist bed set up!
Cheers
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Old 08-05-2016, 01:06 PM   #4
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Default Re: simple Transit conversion, with bed hoist

Quote:
Originally Posted by walsheesh View Post
Great job!! Wondering if you have the ability to level bed, when the vehicle isn't, and does the bed sway a little when moving around on it since it is suspended

thanks for the nice words, folks.

re: leveling: yes. clearly we level the van first, but sometimes that's not quite enough. if not, we at least try and make it so the angle is all crosswise, or all lengthwise. we carry a small stack of 1/2" thick blocks, and we put them in pairs under one end, or one side rail, of the bed as needed. for us the worst night's sleep is if our feet are higher than our head, so erring a bit the other way is fine.

re: swaying: the mattress and bedding get pushed up against the ceiling by the hoist mechanism, so if you haul the bed up firmly, there's no swaying. (you know if you didn't get it right, because the pulleys up at the ends of the roof ribs will slide a bit on their axles, and give a loud clacking sound when you speed up or slow down. :-)

paul
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Old 08-07-2016, 05:19 AM   #5
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Default Re: simple Transit conversion, with bed hoist

Hi Paul,
I am keen to see your 'piece-parts' for the bed set up when you write it up.
Is the winder a Thule component 'off the shelf'? ie. a kayak lift for a garage or similar?
I assume that the black lifting cords need to be identical in length for an even drop or height pull?
Was there any science to the locations of the centre and rear door area pulley wheels?
I have tried to look at your 'Designing and building the rigging' detail but cannot access it as a webpage where I may gain the answers.
All looks great, especially as it weighs in total a lot less than a 'Happijac' bed lift slide mechanism and motor only, before adding a platform base, slats and mattress.
'Happijac' weighs 60kg whereas yours is about 43kg all up, a big weight saving! Love it.
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Old 08-08-2016, 12:35 PM   #6
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Default Re: simple Transit conversion, with bed hoist

downunder -- since you're the first person to ask about the bits-n-pieces list, i'll have to put it together. won't take long, but might not get to it for a few days.

the lift is a Thule off-the-shelf lifter, intended to lift a cargo box off the roof of your car to store it against the ceiling. google for "thule 571" or simply "thule lift". there's a similar product, perhaps cheaper, from Racor. they differ in gear ratio, i believe. you might be interested in this fellow's build, as well. he approached it a little differently: http://www.fordtransitusaforum.com/c...tml#post286521

re: the rear and center pulley locations: they're on the columns that hold up the roof ribs. i got lucky, and there's a small pair of existing holes that were in the perfect location. i had to drill them out for a 5/16" bolt, which becomes the axle of the 1-1/2" pulleys.

thanks for mentioning the issue with getting at the detail images -- there was a bug in my website code.
i see the screenshots of my CAD program are a little small -- sorry about that. i did that work using onshape.com, so the original project is here: https://cad.onshape.com/documents/53...3c319c441f5845 . i believe if you get a login there you can even copy and modify what i did. but i suspect if i just take some more detailed pictures, with measurements, it will be pretty clear how it went together.

are you thinking about this for a transit, or for a sprinter?

paul
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Old 08-09-2016, 06:35 AM   #7
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Default Re: simple Transit conversion, with bed hoist

Hi Paul,
Many thanks for the updated info and the link to the transit forum (that I was oblivious to). I was interested to read Berk8520 build and will go through the whole build and others soon.
The Racor lift is also worthy of consideration but your Thule unit certainly looks cleaner and better overall.
I will check out the link/info to the Thule lift more thoroughly now as well, appreciated.
Gee, the difference in cost from Happijac to the rest makes it worth following up, as well as the weight differences.
No rush on the 'bits n pieces list' either Paul. I will keep an eye out for it and add it to a large file of 'possibles' etc. Your video was a winner as well.
Ideally I would do a lift in a Sprinter MWB (144) but if Ford did a 4x4 or AWD Transit that would be considered favourably as well.
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Old 09-01-2016, 09:50 PM   #8
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Default Re: simple Transit conversion, with bed hoist

I've written up a more detailed description of our bed hoist. It can be found here:
http://projects.foxharp.net/raised_bed_details/

If you want more info on anything, or a better picture, just let me know.

paul
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Old 09-02-2016, 06:24 AM   #9
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Default Re: simple Transit conversion, with bed hoist

Quote:
Originally Posted by foxharp View Post
I've written up a more detailed description of our bed hoist. It can be found here:
http://projects.foxharp.net/raised_bed_details/

If you want more info on anything, or a better picture, just let me know.

paul
Thanks for an excellent concise detailed write up Paul. Very helpful to me if I go down a similar path as I expect.
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Old 06-15-2017, 08:57 PM   #10
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Default Re: simple Transit conversion, with bed hoist

Forgive me, but each time I attempt to use the hyperlink to the write-up I am rejected. The link page says "You don't have permission to access /raised_bed_details/ on this server."
Is this a "me" issue, or a broken link?
Thanks.
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