Orton DIY - Misc.

Graphite Dave

Dave Orton
Simple step for NCV3 with OEM trailer hitch. Just bolt a 1/4" thick x 6" wide x 10" SS plate to top of hitch tube. Picture shows existing 4" wide step but I will change it to 6" wide. Drawing shows 6" wide step. Been using it for a couple of years and it works well. Locate it below the door you first open.
 

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Graphite Dave

Dave Orton
I used a plastic exhaust muffler for a pneumatic valve as an air vent for my fresh water tank. Ran a plastic tube from top of tank and terminated it with the muffler. The muffler is a 3/8" NPT Norgren "Porous Plastic Type Quietaire Muffler" part # C/S3.
 

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Graphite Dave

Dave Orton
My structures are fabricated out of 80/20. I needed a place to hang clothes so added a handle under the overhead cabinet behind the wider refrigerator cabinet. I also added a clip on the vertical 80/20 behind the clothes so a snap end strap from REI can hold clothes tight against the cabinet. The medium handle is 80/20 part # 2061.
 

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Graphite Dave

Dave Orton
Since I did not want any exterior indication that my van is an RV, my fresh water tank is filled by opening the sliding door to access the fill opening. I needed a hose end with a control valve. Being old I remembered the old valves used at gas stations to fill the radiator. Bought it from Benford Fueling.
 

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Graphite Dave

Dave Orton
An easy way to add a tie down anywhere along the 80/20 slot is to use a 1" long "drop-in T-slot stud" part # 3295 from 80/20. There is a 5/16" flat washer against the female eyebolt and a 1" dia x 5/16" plastic spacer to prevent marring of 80/20 extrusion. Just use a flat screwdriver to tighten or loosen the eyebolt.
 

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Aqua Puttana

Poly - Thread Finder
That 80/20 seems like nice stuff and you seem to have figured out some good ways to adapt things for use. Thanks for the tips. Great looking results. :thumbup: vic
 
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Graphite Dave

Dave Orton
80/20 or an equivalent is ideal for a conversion. It makes nice structures and is easy for the semi-skilled to install. I will definitely use it again if I do another conversion. First I need to finish this one.
 

Graphite Dave

Dave Orton
Passenger Handle. Bought 80/20 medium handle part # 2061. Drilled hole in center of passenger cup holder. Installed PEM 1/4-20NC prebulbed insert # ATEAES25P280PB-ZYR. Made 1 3/4" thick wood spacer with hole through the center. Made a aluminum angle made from 1/8" x 3" angle that bolts on top of the wood spacer. Bolted a 1 1/2" x 3/16" angle to the vertical face of the first angle. Bolted the handle to the horizontal surface of the second angle.
 

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Graphite Dave

Dave Orton
Electric reel. Bought 18' 14/3 Retactable Reel from APC Group Model # AL-181314-M Mounted it under van in left rear corner. Punched hole through floor to bring cord into van. I can feel under van for the plug which is hooked to a metal strap with a twisted rubber ring. Do not have to get on knees to unhook. I did buy a bright red velcro strap from REI which I put on the steering wheel every time I plug in.
 

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Graphite Dave

Dave Orton
Paper towel holder. Used 11" long 1 1/2" dia. x 16 ga. 304 SS tube. Bought two tube ends from Solus (Systemplast). (Tube ends are made to fabricate conveyor legs) They are part # VG-550-B38. Unfortunately they do not come with 5/16"-18NC threads. The smallest threads are 3/8". So to bolt the tube to the 80/20, I modified a 3/8" carriage bolt to fit in the 80/20 slot. Ground two flats on the head and filed the square shank down to fit the slot. Drilled a hole in a large mouth 3 5/8" dia. black plastic lid to support bottom of roll.
 

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Graphite Dave

Dave Orton
Microwave: I use a "600 watt" microwave with a 1000 watt inverter. The inverter is a Magnum MMS Series Inverter/Charger. It has a surge rating of 1200 watts for 5 minutes and 1050 for 30 minutes. The microwave is a Proctor-Silex Model PS-P60B17L-D5 with a label that states 850 watts input. The actual input amperage is 8.8 amps on 120 volt AC or 1056 watts input. The microwave cost $49.99 at K-Mart. I have used it at a two minute setting to heat coffee and for leftovers. So a microwave can be used with a 1000 watt inverter.
 

Graphite Dave

Dave Orton
Gray water hose storage. Store hose under the hood. Made a 3/16" x 1 1/2" x 5 3/4" aluminum flatbar with a hole and a slot. Used Sprinter plastic shroud bolt to mount the flatbar. The hose is 5/8" x 15' held in place by a strap with plastic snap coupling.
 

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Graphite Dave

Dave Orton
Tablet Support: Made a support for a 7" Samsung tablet. Not much inside dash to bolt to. Made a 1/4" plywood plate with a 1/2" dowel post. Clamps to a piece of plastic using 80/20 nuts. Plastic swivel bracket is made to mount photocells on a bottling line. It is Systemplast part # 33616. Rotates around 1/2" dowel,top tilts in/out and whole thing will rotate. Tablet drops in from the top and sits on a wood base. Edges of tablet are retained in slots in wood sides. Support works well. Now I need to see if the tablet has any value for this application.
 

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owner

Well-known member
Nice ideas. I especially like the idea of keeping the grey hose in the engine bay.

I'm like you, I'm trying to minimise the external RV-ness of my conversion. Although here in Oz it is illegal to have any mains power cables under the vehicle. And even inside the veh it has to be run in hard conduit with no gaps.

So far the only thing I've got external is the mains input. And I will probably have to add a fresh water filler, but that will just look like a fuel filler to the untrained eye.

I'm lucky in that I have 2 sliding doors, so the "other" slider is my service entry for the toilet cassette, and I'm not having plumbed gas. I will get there one day.

I like your tablet mount too. I have a Samsung GT7.7 tablet waiting to go into my van. I love its glorious LED screen - great for night time too as it does't have that awful LCD backlight.
 

Graphite Dave

Dave Orton
My fresh water fill opening is inside the van. I access it by opening the sliding door. The only RV items that are visable from the street are the ends of the solar panel roof rack and the Maxxair fan housing. Can not see the solar panel, gray water drain or the electrical reel. Looks like a plumbers van from the outside.
 

Graphite Dave

Dave Orton
Roof Channel Bolt:

A stainless 5/16-18NC x 1" elevator bolt works well in the channels. Just grind two flats on the head so bolt slides in the channel end. Picture shows a standard bolt and a modified bolt. Bolt purchased from McMaster-Carr part # 92361A463.
 

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Graphite Dave

Dave Orton
NCV3 Oversize Tires:

Installed Michelin LTX M/S2 LT265/75R16 tires on my 08 Sprinter. Mounted them on th stock steel wheels. Tires specifications say a minimum wheel width is 7". Stock Spriner wheels are 6 1/2" wide. Put them on anyway and have not had any problems.
 

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Graphite Dave

Dave Orton
Cabinet Latches:

Originally had pushbutton latches that were difficult to open and I broke several forcing drawers to open. Maybe a different brand would have been better. Changed to Southco "pull ring" latches. They work much better because the pawl is pulled down when you pull the ring instead of using a spring loaded ramp with the pushbutton latches. I used the medium size M1-63 (for 12 to 17mm panel thickness) black plastic latches. Ordered from D.R. Roberts Comany for about $11.00 ea.
 

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Graphite Dave

Dave Orton
Nutsert:

Tried using nutserts but had difficulty installing because hole size is critical and the manual insertion tool was difficult to use on overhead holes. Hard to turn two wrenches and hold insert in the hole at the same time. Looked for a better alternate and found Penn Engineering 1/4" Atlas prebulbed inserts part # AES25P280PBPB-ZYR. They are much easier to install. I used a manual insert tool from McMaster-Carr part # 96349A305 for $29.16. Had to change the bolt to a grade 8 1/4-20NC x 2 1/2" because Penn insert is longer than a nutsert. See photo for comparison of the Penn to the nutsert. Photo also shows the manual insert tool and the back view of the Penn insert when it is installed. Notice the 4 legs of the insert which make the hole diameter less critical. Drilled out holes to 11/32" for the Penn's. Bought Penn inserts from D.R.Roberts Cmpany.
 

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d_bertko

New member
Dave,

I had no particular problem installing the zillion Marson 1/4-20 rivnuts in my DIY.

It was convenient to drill the holes with reasonable precision because that would let me press fit or lightly tap the uncompressed rivnut into place. Thus an extra hand not required.

The holes were quickly cut with a Unibit to 3/8" size then a second drill with a 25/64" bit finished the cut. Pretty easy to minimize any overcutting that way. No real skill needed.

Part of the ratcheting wrench used with the allen wrench is just visible. Compact but maybe not as ergonomic as the larger insertion tools.
 

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