Overland Build

bearyw

2004 Dodge Sprinter T1N 118”
Here is a link to the handle. If you look at the "also bought" section lower on the page there are a number of other handles to look at. I liked the flexible strap type handle as it has a bit more flexibility in mounting. I used 1/8" steel rivets, but sheet metal screws would likely work just as well.

http://amzn.to/28KoYzU
Where exactly did you mount this to? i looked at the service manual and can't see the access point and when I remove the plugs there is nothing behind the headliner to attach to.
 

Midwestdrifter

Engineer In Residence
If the van was ordered with the handle, there is a bracket spot welded to the frame tube above the door. In my case I didn't have a bracket, so I just put a #10 sheetmetal screw into the tube (approximately horizontal in penetration.
 

Midwestdrifter

Engineer In Residence
One shade installed, waiting on a new sliding door roller so I can modify to add a bit of clearance. The blinds are reflective silver on the outside, combined with the double pane, there is no comparison to a glass window, and significant improvement over the glass window with fabric shade.



A little light fab work to move the maxtrax down.


Its still not enough to open the window all the way, so I will just trim a bit off the end of them.



 

Midwestdrifter

Engineer In Residence
The viar compressor stopped working properly about 2 years ago. It would only make about 70psi. The bore is scored, so obviously it ingested some sand or similar. I rebuilt it, and relocated it, and the intake will be moved inside the cabin.

IMG_20200528_092902360


IMG_20200528_103630221


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I got a new middle slider/roller for the door. I cut it mid span, and bent it outwards about 3/16". I needed to do some light clearancing in the mating aperture on the door, but it fits.

IMG_20200529_092958123


Here you can see the clearance between the window shade and the side of the van, its tight, bit it fits.

 

Midwestdrifter

Engineer In Residence
Would there be any value to a small air filter for the Viair?
It has a basic foam unit. Obviously it didn't work well, even in the vans rocker panel. Of course it may have been submerged once or twice.
 

Midwestdrifter

Engineer In Residence
Roughing out a new galley cabinet. I think I will save time and stick with the same basic layout and appliances. Moving the fridge upward will gain me some storage and avoid stubbed toes from the door. I am not sure what type of storage to use the the right side. Bins? Drawers? Drawers are convenient, but the slides eat up 1/2" on each side. If I use light gauge aluminum for the drawers, I can net another 0.6 cubic feet of storage. Getting rid of the slides and using some other method could net me another 0.5 cubic feet. Very attractive in a small van.

1590865707132.png
 

Surf44

2004 158 2500
Whats your way To get perfect fitting like that? I’ve seen the contour gauges but haven’t seen one over 20” long and they’re only about 4-6” wide. How did you scribe for the fitment of the plywood to the headliner?
 

Attachments

Midwestdrifter

Engineer In Residence
I used a sheet of 1/2" XPS foam. I then carved it to fit with my coarse wood file and a sanding block. The headliner is also flexible, so its a bit forgiving if you put a bit of pressure on it for a firm fit.
 

Midwestdrifter

Engineer In Residence
So here is a thought on a self retaining bin without slides.

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Here is the bin at full extension. In order to remove the bin, the front is lifted up as it is pulled out, which allows the tabs to clear. If desired the front face can be attached to wood etc for a finished appearance.

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Surf44

2004 158 2500
Ah good tip on using foam board, yea that’s how Ive been doing most fitments but using card board or just slowly taken away at the piece I'm fitting. Wasn’t sure if you made some kinda big contour gauge.
 

sprint2freedom

2008 NCV3 170ext
I did the headliner shelf by making and installing the brackets first, taping yardsticks between all 4 brackets, then scribing half of the curve (e.g. driver side half) onto cardboard, making a duplicate copy of that template, flipping the copy over and taping them together.
 

Midwestdrifter

Engineer In Residence
Another 800 miles on the van. Had to do a roadside repair when a intercooler hose suddenly developed a 3" split. 20 minutes and back on the road. I have had that silicone rescue tape for 8 years, and of course some 50lb zip ties. Held great.

IMG_20200621_154605926_HDR.jpg

I need to weigh the van, but I bet it was at 9k lbs loaded up for the move.
 
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glasseye

Well-known member
Love that twenty-minute field repair. :rad:
What is “silicone rescue tape” and where do we get it?
 

Midwestdrifter

Engineer In Residence
Love that twenty-minute field repair. :rad:
What is “silicone rescue tape” and where do we get it?
Major stores carry it. I read about a deep water fishing boat that was able to save their engine by making a temporary Veebelt with a piece of rope wrapped in this tape.

This tape is adhesive free but will almost immediately bond to itself forming a contiguous piece of silicon. By stretching it tightly over the hose and overlapping it can make and seal low pressures hoses etc. suggest carrying two rolls for larger repairs. Note that the tape needs to be kept clean during the wrapping where the layers self fuse.

Other uses include cooling hoses. I have successfully repaired coolant and intake hoses using tire/tube patch kits as well.

 

glasseye

Well-known member
Excellent. Ordered. :hugs:
 

Midwestdrifter

Engineer In Residence
Starting the ball rolling on some upgrades. Shower pan steel and curtain have been ordered.

I am playing with a 5k BTU window unit. Its 100% mechanical, and surprisingly quiet.





It seems to be keeping up with the heat load. Its 95F currently with 60% humidity. It took about 2 hours to get the humidity down in the van. Power consumption is about 450W currently but the temps aren't crazy currently.

My thoughts are to break the unit into two pieces. The compressor, fan, and condenser will go under the van in the spare tire area. Its only about 11" tall, so it should fit fine there. The evaporator will be relocated into a cabinet. Maybe above the rear doors? Since the unit uses a capillary tube and R32, it would probably be best to swap to a Temperature expansion valve, there seem to be 1/2 ton rated valves for R134A. That would let me charge it myself to save some money.

Its possible to swap the capillary tube for a size that's correct for R134A, and I may still go that route.
 

Midwestdrifter

Engineer In Residence
Okay, I think I have reached a conclusion with the AC unit. I am going to cut it in half. The fan motor, compressor, and condenser will go under the van in the spare tire area. I will add high/low service ports and silver solder an appropriate copper line set. The evaporator and controls will go above the rear doors pointing over the bed. Since the fan motor is going with the condenser, I will need a 12V blower for the evaporator. Looks like a 40W centrifugal blower will work. If I am careful I think I can use the same filter and outlet vents to keep my cost/labor down.

The unit currently uses a short capillary tube as a metering device, and its charged with R32. I could swap to an expansion valve for 134A (or any other compatible refrigerant). For capacity reasons, I would like to stick with R32 or 410A. I don't see any issue with keeping the capillary tube, though I may need to go with a larger line set for pressure drop reasons. I will need to pay a HVAC tech to evac and charge the system.

Total cost should be pretty low, and if the unit craps out I can just replace components as needed. I believe the silver solder should work fine with these sized lines. I would like to avoid brazing for various reasons.
 

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