The Tomabago Tear Drop

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The Tomabago Tear Drop

Postby Socal Tom » Fri Mar 23, 2012 8:14 am

I'll get right to business here. I bought this yesterday.
viewtopic.php?f=18&t=49108
It was originally intended as a cargo trailer, so I'll be reworking some stuff to have it suit my needs. My goal is to make a generic Benroy, with A/C. One of the first goals if this TD will be to act as my hotel room when I drive cross country in a few months to transport our two pugs to San Diego from the Raleigh NC area. It was a 700 mile round trip to pick up the TD yesterday, and the TD followed very well. The Previous owner has some info on what was done previously here. viewtopic.php?t=43183.

There are a couple of issues I'd like help working through solutions from the great minds here.
1) I need to move the hinge point for the top back to the typical location.
I'm thinking that I can remove the portion of the hinge that is mounted, then attach the roof to the body with glue and flat brackets from home depot, something like in the attached picture. I would then skin the wall with a little insulation and luan or paneling.
The exterior seam would be filled with epoxy sanded and painted.
Any concerns with this approach? Better ideas? ( redoing the sides is probably more than I can do and I don't have access to a biscuit joiner and a person who knows how to use it)
0622.jpg
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2) The generic Benroy, ( and every build I've seen) skins the interior roof before the exterior. In my case the exterior is done. I'm assuming this will make wiring harder, but isn't a show stopper. Anything I'm missing?
3) If I insulate and skin the walls, do I have to insulate and skin the doors? I'm just thinking about 1/2 inch on each wall, since its already under 59 inches inside

4) the sides of the hatch are about 3 1/4 inch deep vs the 3/8 in the plans. I will need some suggestions on how to seal the sides against leaks etc.

That is all I have for now, thanks
Tom
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Re: The Tomabago Tear Drop

Postby KCStudly » Fri Mar 23, 2012 3:12 pm

If you could post some pics of the hatch side profile, and perhaps one of the inside of the hatch to side wall joint, that might help people be able to make some suggestions.

The original builder's (OB?) pics don't really show any hatch details that I could see from scanning his thread (I had read it previously, but kind of just skimmed thru it this time).

My first reaction would be to add some new spars in the existing hatch on both sides of where you want the new hinge location to be, then cut the front part of the hatch off down the middle of the new spars, paying particular attention to how the sides of the wall/hatch joint need to work out for weather sealing. Then reattach the front part of the hatch to the cabin using whatever method you have the skills/tools to use. Although a biscuit/plate joiner might be ideal, you could also attach cleats are strips of plywood doublers to the walls and roof, and fasten those together with screws and filled epoxy. Check with local pawn shops and CList...you may find a biscuit joiner cheap, and they are not hard to use once you understand the concept, how to make adjustments to the fence and some basic safety issues.

Just spit balling my ideas hoping it will spark something for you. Good luck!
KC
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Re: The Tomabago Tear Drop

Postby Socal Tom » Fri Mar 23, 2012 6:10 pm

Thanks KCStudly,
Here are some pics of todays progress
IMG_0295.s.jpg
IMG_0295.s.jpg (75.55 KiB) Viewed 3914 times
This is a shot after I removed the hinge at the top and clamped the roof in place. The line on the roof is the approximate location of the cut for the hatch. Its about 75 inches from the front, so pretty close to the GB plans. You may also noticed I've scrapped quite a bit of the rough surface from the side. Its a bit of work, but I can scrap it off of the 3/4 plywood successfully. The 1/8 luan on the roof is another story. Its too soft, so I took a shot with a sander, and while it works, it takes a long time and doesn't do as effecitve a job as the scrapping. This evening I'm leaning towards tearing out the luan and redoing the roof.
This shot shows the gap in the roof I would need to fill it I don't start over.
IMG_0298s.jpg
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This is where I removed the hurricane hinge from.

I've also marked where the door fits. The axle is a bit forward vs the GB plans, so I only have 12 inches from the front of the cab to the leading edge of the door. That leaves me the full 30 inch wide door.
IMG_0296s.jpg
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I'm hoping I can cut straight. I'll save that for another day when I'm rested and refreshed.

Here's a closer shot of the gap between the wall and the roof section.
IMG_0296s.jpg
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Tom
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Re: The Tomabago Tear Drop

Postby KCStudly » Fri Mar 23, 2012 7:46 pm

Get yourself an extruded aluminum cutting guide like this one Extruded Alum Cutting Guide. Inexpensive, other brands also available at big box stores, comes in two pieces with a short spline piece to connect them. Works really well for ripping and cross cutting ply with a skilsaw if you don't have a table saw (or you do have a table saw with an itty bitty table that works poorly for large sheets).
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Re: The Tomabago Tear Drop

Postby Socal Tom » Sat Mar 24, 2012 3:18 pm

I took your advice and got the guide. It helped a lot. Here are pics of todays progress.
Cut the hatch off, and got a start on the cabinets.
IMG_0304s.jpg
IMG_0304s.jpg (141.9 KiB) Viewed 3843 times

I decided on a 75 inch long bed, that gave me a bit more room for the galley. However, I realized that I really needed to cut the door before I sealed up the back again with the cabinets, so I went for it. It isn't perfect, but its within allowable tolerance I believe.
IMG_0303s.jpg
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Re: The Tomabago Tear Drop

Postby Socal Tom » Mon Mar 26, 2012 9:01 am

Here is the current update

Roof is now permanently attached. Once I mocked up the cabinets, it was clear that the largest part of the gap will be inside the cabinets, and well hidden, so I'm going to use the T brackets inside the cabinets, to keep the front in place, I'm using the spars originally intended to hold the hinge. By screwing through them, it will be a nice strong attachment and behind the headliner. I was going to post pics, but I'm getting an error that I've exceeded my quota, so I'll find somewhere I can post them.

The interior roofhttps://plus.google.com/u/0/photos/114867801377029987835/albums/5724208661289753281/5724208920768948226

The bottom of the hatch
https://plus.google.com/u/0/photos/114867801377029987835/albums/5724208661289753281/5724208956330375554


Tom
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Re: The Tomabago Tear Drop

Postby Socal Tom » Tue Mar 27, 2012 9:27 pm

Not much done today. The little ne was home sick. I did research where to put the AC. After hours working out a drawer system so it would move out the galley,I decided just to mount it permanently in the galley wall. I marked my other door for cutting. Tomorrow I do a lot of cutting, and final cabinet assembly.
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Re: The Tomabago Tear Drop

Postby Socal Tom » Thu Mar 29, 2012 4:41 pm

Didn't get as much done as I hoped today. I replaced the front part of the roof where it was cut for an access hatch. I also drilled the holes for my wiring. I ordered some 14-2 wire on line, I hope it gets here soon. I've also spent quite a bit of time scrapping the "stucco" off the side of the trailer. I've picked my paint. I'm going to use rustoleum hammered paint for the exterior. I think with some more sanding and a good priming it should look good, while hiding my imperfections.
Tom
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Re: The Tomabago Tear Drop

Postby Socal Tom » Sat Mar 31, 2012 9:52 pm

Got a lot less done this week than I intended. A sick 6 year old needs lots of attention, but I did get a bit done.
The cabinets are almost completely installed. I still have a few minor things to do, like make a couple of doors, but other wise they are installed for the last time.
The air conditioner is in place. I debated long about where to put it. The front was out, because I didn't want it near my head, and I may be carrying a generator on the tongue, so that wouldn't work. Either side is out because I may end up dragging it through the brush off road now and then, and I wouldn't want to damage it that way ( though I considered the temporary door idea, but the idea of a summer rain storm on a hot evening talked me out of that. So the rear end was the only viable option left. I considered strongly putting the A/C unit on a sliding shelf, so I could push it out the back of the trailer for drainage, but ultimately I just installed it "permanatly" in the galley bulkhead. The sliding shelf ideas mean that you can't make your bed without moving the A/C unit. ( and making it would have been a lot of work.) This way, my bed can be made and ready regardless of the weather conditions. I do lose some space in the galley, but I think I can work around it.

I also debated on whether to have a sink or not. In the end, I will have a sink. I've marked the spot for it ( it actually overlaps the A/C unit by a couple of inches). Much of my camping would fall under the dry camping territory, so I think it will be worthwhile to have a sink. Eventually I intend to build some drawers for my galley, but for now, some shelves and room for my camping totes will have to suffice.

Here is a pic of the cabinet layout on the interior. I will be adding doors to the two outer cabinets. The middle cabinet will house an LCD TV that we already have. The TV will be for entertaining my 6 year old should the weather turn for the worse. I'm used to camping in the Southern California desert. Weather systems go through fairly often in the desert season ( Nov-May) when its cool enough to be there. When they do, the wind can make it painful to be outside. With the TV we can tolerate a few hours of weather and still have a good time. In general though, my camping rule is no TV unless its dark out or the weather is too bad to be outside.
Image

I've managed to install the first door. I mangled a piece of 3/4 angle I was trying to soften for bending. I'll try again tomorrow. I'm painting the exterior with Rustoleum Hammered paint. The door has been painted, as well as a few test spot on the trailer.
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Re: The Tomabago Tear Drop

Postby Martiangod » Sat Mar 31, 2012 11:31 pm

Looking good, nice transformation from a storage pod
If it ain't broke, fix it till it is

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Re: The Tomabago Tear Drop

Postby Socal Tom » Wed Apr 04, 2012 6:06 pm

Its been a crazy week. Due to circumstances beyond my control,( I got a job yeah!) I had to start slapping things together for a trip cross country. So for now its only got one door, no insulation or interior ceiling, and some of the cabinetry is unfinished, and the exterior is looking pretty ugly. Hopefully I'll have some time to complete it when I arrive in CA next week. But for now, here are the pics of what it will look like going cross country this weekend. Its never going to be as pretty as some of your rigs, but I think it will work fine for me. :)

Image

Image

I've got a couple of small things left to do... need a spare tire, need to better mount A/C so it doesn't move around, but other than that I'm ready to roll.
Tom
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The Tomabago Tear Drop

Postby TBuilder » Wed Apr 04, 2012 7:00 pm

Wow, you did so much work in so little time! I don't envy your drive though, hope you take your time and enjoy the road trip!
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Re: The Tomabago Tear Drop

Postby Socal Tom » Thu Apr 05, 2012 1:14 pm

TBuilder wrote:Wow, you did so much work in so little time! I don't envy your drive though, hope you take your time and enjoy the road trip!


You gave me a good platform to start with, and when you are unemployed you tend to have more time to work on projects. I'd love to slow down and enjoy the trip, but that isn't in the works for this journey. I've got to be in pomona tuesday, so I'll be driving 10-12 hours a day and trying to keep two pugs happy along the way. I'm plotting my way between KOA campgrounds, so I can get a shower and a little rest each night.
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Re: The Tomabago Tear Drop

Postby KCStudly » Thu Apr 05, 2012 3:16 pm

Pomona? Really? That's my original home town. Although I have lived here in Connecticut far longer, my whole family thinks of Pomona as home. Sadly, my grandparents have passed on and there isn't any family left there to go back to anymore. We've all moved away.

Can you tell us any more about what you will be doing there? Socal speed shop? NHRA museum? Winter Nationals? Mt. Baldy? Lots of memories in that thar town.

Have fun.
KC
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Re: The Tomabago Tear Drop

Postby Socal Tom » Thu Apr 05, 2012 5:03 pm


Can you tell us any more about what you will be doing there? Socal speed shop? NHRA museum? Winter Nationals? Mt. Baldy? Lots of memories in that thar town.

Have fun.


Nothing that exciting. ill be doing some consulting in San Diego . Pomona is the corporate office where i have to get some training and pickup a phone and computer.
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