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My Bed design


trimster
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So, cold weather brings time to learn Sketch-Up.

I'm doing a mind-dump of the bed build...when things get warmer. Like above 50'ish. That could be March around here (Salt Lake).

Not every structural detail is shown. Might get to those if time permits.

The under-deck ramp boxes go all the way across the bed. There will be a wall inside keeping the ramps from sliding across the width of the bed.  That allows for 2' deep boxes on the drivers side and the needed 6' deep for the ramps.

The bed width is 102". The rear boxes are 22"w x 31"d x 18"Tall. Should be big enough for a generator on one side. I'm also thinking about a fuel cell between the frame rails for the generator, located just over the rear axle.

I might add skirts around the wheels. We'll have to see how the build goes.

The deck on my MDT was diamond plate that was screwed down. I could remove any of the sections as needed to work on stuff under it. I'm thinking of doing that with this bed. NOT the polished diamond plate. I've had my fill of keeping that stuff looking nice. Most likely will bed-liner the entire thing. I used gray color before. Shows dirt more, but not so hot in the summer months.

4tRkS2Pl.jpg

WIhpmfcl.png

 

 

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2 hours ago, jenandjon said:

Will you be putting a reciever hitch in the bumper?

So, part of the build has started. The frame was extended 25", hitch installed, bumper configured and installed, truck frame doublers (2"x6" C- channel), fenders, wiring to the rear.

FEMCPxFl.jpg

The drawings do not show the structure elements for the bumper, hitch.

Ptgipxol.jpg

And yes, the frost is on the pumpkin this morning. 18*.

 

Edited by trimster
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102" is prime width, just measure to avoid any"Ooops". Plans for tiedown attachment points? Both inner and outer points. What type of tiedowns are you planning? I'm torn on the ramp boxes. Part of me likes the idea of a separate storage area on the driver's side, but part of me hates the idea of sticking my hands into a 6" high metal box. Personal experience with service boxes. The removable plates are a good idea, easier than lifting the deck. I'd definitely plan for a hitch receiver tube, for Justin. Justin Case. 18" doors will work for a 2kW size genset, but it'll be snug. Not sure about the newer 2.2-2.8kW size. 3kW are probably too big to fit.

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Darryl&Rita: Part of the pain to learn SketchUP free is offset by process of drafting it out and figuring where stuff needs to go, what extra plates/supports are needed for stuff like tie-downs, wheel chocks, and where the winch is going to be mounted. I want a dorm box of some sort up front, so I'll put some steel up there to support the mounting brackets. I'm leaning towards buying pre-made under bed boxes and stacking them.

So the design is leaning towards loading the toy (car, trike, GoldWind...options!) from the passengers side. I'm not sure why one would load from the drivers side unless the car is pulled up backwards. Thoughts appreciated on this.

Ribs across the bed will be 2x2, thick-wall steel. The bed rail will be 2"x4" C-channel.

I'm also working the structure to use the space above the rear boxes (sloped) for storage. It won't be weather sealed but good 'stuff' storage.

 

Edited by trimster
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We built our deck to handle as many possibilities and occasions as possible, without forcing us to do only one thing, one way. We usually winch the car up, backwards, but have driven it. We've also unloaded backwards. We've loaded a golf cart, lawnmower, lumber, and Costco boxed groceries on the deck. Multiple attachment points for tiedowns makes it possible. Using the dirt bank of a ditch, we've even winched a busted Jeep on from the rear. It ended up sitting on the hitch, due to a broken rear axle. Options. It's all about options. I've never been patient enough to use SketchUp for something this involved, but I have experience with SolidWorks, so I use that. You're a brave man.

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2 minutes ago, Darryl&Rita said:

......I've never been patient enough to use SketchUp for something this involved, but I have experience with SolidWorks, so I use that. You're a brave man.

Ya.... or slow on the uptake. SketchUP is free and frustrating. When I was teaching at the university, I got the full version for free. I do miss the extra features but just can't justify the price. I don't use it that much. Mostly us the skills I got in high school drafting class. Pencil, eraser, paper, and ruler. I did 5 version that way.

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Steve makes a very good point.  I wish I'd done that.

One other thing to consider, make the bed in sections, thus the section where the "toy" sits removable.  Much easier to access the drive line that way, rather than trying to slither down through a small hole in the deck.  Take it from "round-boy", getting stuck in a tight place is no fun.

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1 minute ago, rickeieio said:

Steve makes a very good point.  I wish I'd done that.

One other thing to consider, make the bed in sections, thus the section where the "toy" sits removable.  Much easier to access the drive line that way, rather than trying to slither down through a small hole in the deck.  Take it from "round-boy", getting stuck in a tight place is no fun.

The sheets of decking will unscrew as whole sheets. So full width of the deck and 4' wide. My MDT had 1/8" x 1" wide rubber glued to the rubs to stop any rattling. The stainless hex head screws were counter sunk into the deck. I could have deck plate off in 5 min. Might be a few more screws/bolts to un-do on this one as there will be tie-downs and wheel chocks that need backing plates, possibly tied to the 2x2 ribs. But it will be easier than trying to create hatches and access holes.

I do like the look of the 'beaver tail'. That's the only compelling reason to do the extra work. I am going to need to check how many inches my hitch spring system settles before going away from the beaver tail. I could raise the hitch either putting it on square tubing risers or the hitch itself has vertical adjustments.

After measuring, I find I can't put the winch under the bed like I wanted. Having dual axles kinda takes up a lot of that space under there. So I will come out of a receiver hitch, built into the side rail of the bed, with a tubing riser and the winch on top. I can store the parts in the ramp storage boxes.

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I made my deck modular, the front/rear sections are removable independently.     The back saddle bag section has connector tubes that bolt to the front section.    My deck is flat and I haul a 48' semi trailer with a 36" king pin, I have 12-14 degrees of dip clearance with 47" of deck behind the kingpin.    The deck has 4" clearance to the trailer frame with the air up, the pic shows the trailer with no air in the truck suspension.      The body IS not full width on my truck it is 88" wide at the black frame work. 

You have a trailer with the kingpin at or near the front of the trailer, even offroading in steep hills the dip is going to be behind the body in anything short of a 45 degree turn.   

20201201-165015.jpg

   

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This is really good to see and know. Thanks. Flat deck is easier to build. 

MOho06Rl.jpg

However, my hitch suspension squats 3" when the trailer is hooked up. Right now the top of the hitch is 2" above projected deck height . With the trailer on-hook, the top of the hitch will be below the top of the bed. Yes, the pinbox does slope up about 2" over its length. Maybe I am still concerned that the pinbox will not clear when jack-knifed. My shot backing into our yard, does require a near 80 degree backing turn.

Maybe I am not visualizing this properly.

Edited by trimster
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trimster - you could project some lines using tape measure engineering methods with an assistant that can be quiet and hold the tape and or the stick (oops I'm sorry "engineering straight edge projector instrument") while you look at the angles and dangles and mark the information on your sketch.

BEWARE of words like "should" work, "that's gotta" miss, "that won't" (oh yes it will...) 

You want measurement verified words like "that will miss" and "that has clearance" and "that will only hit as the trailer rolls over" and "this will hit if I high hitch and uncouple accidentally" 

Or make a hole in the deck big enough for the upper 5th wheel plate on the pin box to swivel and not hit, no matter the angle or tilt. 

Then when you remove the hitch head you could have a filler plate to drop in and make a flat deck. 

The beavertail will increase front of tractor unit down dip clearance to the underside of the trailer.  And make loading anything over the back of the truck easier. 

The Rule Of Thumb when mounting big 5th wheels AKA "commercial hitches" for connecting full width semi trailers (without the RV pickup box style "pin box" or goose neck) is the bolster pin should be completely above the highest anything attached to the truck's frame anywhere under the swing of the trailer.  

If the 5th wheel is too low and you make that one turn where the trailer has to lean down the trailer will get a hold of something on the truck and give it a Big Owie. Vans and outside rail flatbeds are big and flat so there can be some rubbin' and scuffin' but you should see what tankers and grain bulkers do to beautiful full fender sets... 

I digress

Steve from SoCal's big hitch is mounted on the ragged edge of this rule but it will work.

Edited by noteven
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Noteven:

So I kinda did that 'line projection' activity and found that unloaded, the hitch is 2" above the planned bed height. My concern is when loaded, it squats 2"+. The suspension, as seen in an earlier photo, is not air driven so pumping it up to maintain ride height is not an option. The photo below shows it on the road when mounted to the MDT we had.

uVNB5lul.jpg

But I do have 2 options and one is not a good plan due to the design (or lack thereof) of the hitch. I can raise the suspension several inches by adjusting the tray that holds the suspension 'air springs'. This increases the side-to-side forces through leverage. The side plates on this hitch are already marginal. So I hesitate to move the load-point up.

The second, better, plan would be adding box tubing under the hitch. Thru-bolt it to the base mounting plate. If I raised the overall hitch height 3", the top of the hitch would be flush if not a tad higher than the deck under full load. I'd feel a lot better about that scenario. Would it then be to high to allow for a hitch hole cover to fit when the head is removed? Should (nebulous word). I can figure that out easily.

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Ya I see those plates are kinda "tall and thin". 

I like idea 2. 

A RV 5th wheel hitch mounted in a pickup truck is in a giant hole. So there should be no reason your hitch won't work with the plate flush as long as there is clearance all around it for the trailer 1/2 (upper 5th wheel or "pin box") to clear at all angles and dangles. 

You might want some heavy smooth plate behind the hitch if it is that low to the deck so you can skid the pin up it in the dark 😀...

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Maybe I missed it , what is the ride height of the fifth wheel ?     Can you raise the fifth wheel plate on the trailer?     From the sound of it you will need to recess the deck the swing radius of the lower hitch at least 95~100 degrees on both sides.   

It is hard to see the hitch geometry from your pic, how about a side view of the entire hitch/fifth wheel plate.

Steve 

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4 hours ago, Steve from SoCal said:

Maybe I missed it , what is the ride height of the fifth wheel ?     Can you raise the fifth wheel plate on the trailer?     From the sound of it you will need to recess the deck the swing radius of the lower hitch at least 95~100 degrees on both sides.   

It is hard to see the hitch geometry from your pic, how about a side view of the entire hitch/fifth wheel plate.

Steve 

Here's the only nearly-side-on photo I have.

hzgxegOl.jpg

This shows it with no load on the hitch...springs fully extended.

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Is your trailer level with the hitch compressed now?     Can you raise the pin box on the trailer then raise the hitch?     Looking at that hitch, you may be able to support the spring tray by using a wood block under it to bear on the steel plate.     Are the springs providing a level trailer with variable pin weights?      

The pin box "looks like" it has a cutaway from the plate how much relief is there between the plate and the arm that goes back to the trailer?     Do you know what the pin height is on the trailer?     

Steve

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