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Remodeled RVs


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In looking through some of the used RV ads, I noticed several that had been modified greatly from the configuration that it left the factory with. That got me to wondering if RVs like that have been taken to a scale to get accurate weights after the project was completed, and if buyers do so when considering on for use. I have seen some really neat pictures of innovative modifications, but it could add a lot of weight to an RV. 

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I've remodeled several RV's over the years, both for myself and others. In most cases, weight was always a consideration and I tried to keep the alterations within 100 lbs of the factory weight for the final weigh out. The few times weight wasn't a consideration were TT's destined for permanent hunting camp use where additional insulation and heating was more important than weight. I did lighten one small TT by a couple of hundred pounds once. But that was a conversion for Ice fishing complete with skis replacing the original wheels. 

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We did a remodel in 2019.  Upgraded suspension, added awning, changed appliances, new furniture, new flooring, bike rack, updated entertainment center, new kitchen sink and faucets, structural reinforcement in two areas, and more.  Had a SmartWeigh done as soon as back in FL.

Wayne & Jinx
2017 F-350 diesel, dually
2006 Carriage Carri-Lite 36KSQ

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12 hours ago, Dutch_12078 said:

I've remodeled several RV's over the years, both for myself and others. In most cases, weight was always a consideration and I tried to keep the alterations within 100 lbs of the factory weight for the final weigh out. The few times weight wasn't a consideration were TT's destined for permanent hunting camp use where additional insulation and heating was more important than weight. I did lighten one small TT by a couple of hundred pounds once. But that was a conversion for Ice fishing complete with skis replacing the original wheels. 

Just wondered if you weighed the  material you took out and the parts -materials you put in?

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1 hour ago, bigjim said:

Just wondered if you weighed the  material you took out and the parts -materials you put in?

No, I just pretty much "guesstimated" the materials as I went, and when there was enough progress to warrant it, I stuck my bottle jack scales under the frame and tongue to verify how I was doing. The scales aren't accurate enough for official weights, but they get it pretty close.

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We took out the couch and added a recliner and special table, and had awnings put up over the slides and then took it to the scales for weighing.  It turned out to be about 58 lbs heavier but fell within our insurance plan guidelines and we didn't have any extra charge.  It's safer to to that rather than take a chance when something goes wrong and the insurance balks since it's not factory installed.

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2 hours ago, Kirk W said:

That is something that I was not aware existed. Could you educate me?

Bottle jack scales are simply hydraulic bottle jacks with an added pressure gauge that's been calibrated in lbs instead of PSI based on the piston size, etc. I made mine years ago using an article I found online. Search on "bottle jack scales". Doing the math to calibrate the scale was harder than the mechanical changes for me. :)

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I modofoied both of our fivers to add offices to each Our first HitchHiker had one of those gawdawful booths in it, I removed the booth and installed a Formica counter and got two nice light wooden chairs for it in the kitchen abd built on a computer space and custom space for the giant Brother All in one, an early 1997 model. You can see it in the pics. Below is the 98 Challenger our second rig. I ordered a second desktop from Sauder to make and extension and shelves that matched.

U1f82Shl.jpg

 

Here in our first rig, a 1990 34.5 foot aluminum skinned/roofed ultralight fiver. The Formica counter I built and did the Formica on too. The paneling you see and all the trim and framing were from the original booth minus any cushions and hardware.

p8jinJcl.jpg

We needed a place for the laptop and printer, as well as opening up the kitchen. The booth left little clearance at the entrance. The door was from the storage under the seats and had to be turned around.

When my wife was cooking she had room once the booth was gone. The half sheet of 5/8ths plywood weighed a bit less than the booth table and steel center support that can be removed to drop it down as a bed. All that was gone and made it feel much more roomy.

3x8Bonal.jpg

The booth was at a right angle to the door and was a tight fit to come in. That's why the end wall of the counter was angled in like it was. The Fire extinguisher was in the same panel I used but re-positioned.

I did ductwork mods and changed the power inlet cable from a cheap plug to a twist lock 30 amp power inlet with a door. I also added storm windows and a new A/C and reefer along the way. We could seat four inside comfortably with two on the counter and two with TV trays in the recliners. We added he accordion blinds, and took out the sofa at the HitchHiker factory and bought two of their leather recliners with real top grain leather you can see in the background.

bAveVfml.jpg

That was long time ago! Oh we also changed the mauve curtains. Back then it was that or blue. or beige. Then when the slide leaked we went back to the factory and had them put in all new carpet too while the slide was out. That was a great rig. That Challenger looks nicer but was pure junk with bad workmanship all over it that I ended up fixing.

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