Mini Toy_hauler cargo conversion

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Mini Toy_hauler cargo conversion

Postby JohnnyK » Tue May 23, 2017 7:16 pm

Hey All,

I've been following and enjoying the forums at tnttt for several years and it was here I was inspired to take on this project way back in 2013.

I wanted a small versatile camper on a fairly strict budget, and not have to have a loan on it. I shopped around quite a bit and nothing met my criteria, everything was too big, too expensive, and too cheap/flimsy construction and even 5-7 year old used trailers looked cruddy for their prices. So, I decided to go with a cargo trailer conversion.

My goal is to end up with a very easy to pack-up and go trailer, to be able to go on weekend or longer trips with minimal prep. Basically pack food, water and clothes and be ready to go!

I ordered the trailer new, its a Mirage, with the bubble wrap foil type of insulation, an RV style door with window and screen door, sliding windows with screens on either side and a standard size roof vent. It has a fold down rear ramp door and curved front and roof, and is an extra foot tall from standard. Since I've had this trailer a few years now and camped and moved with it I think I would purchase a Vee-nose with flat roof if doing again, but oh well it is kind of a parachute behind the truck.

An important design consideration for me is that the trailer needs to retain other uses, and it has already helped me and several friends move a couple times. Also important is that if we are camping and its rainy or bad weather (late season hunting) then the interior is roomy enough to change clothes or hangout or fix some food, so that was part of the reason for extra height.


Last year I built a fold down queen size bed that we will use with a 4 inch memory foam mattress pad. The bed is quite heavy though, I am thinking of having a friend make up a steel frame thats much lighter. Does anyone know of good design resource for metal fold down bed? I don't want to make a second "too heavy" bed frame.

Backing up was always a worry of mine, especially when we camp for hunting we are just out in the national forests here in UT so theres usually obstacles when parking. I got a backup camera kit intended for road salt spreaders, and installed the camera up high on the back of the trailer. The wire runs hidden inside the trailer and then out to a connector on the tongue. I got an adapter to fit the factory plug on my truck at the tailgate. When I hookup the trailer, I just unplug the tailgate camera connector and plug in the trailer and now when reversing the trailer camera is what comes up on the factory screen in my truck!

I have also plumbed propane from a dual tank setup to a manifold inside the front of the tailer and a long pipe under the frame with a quick disconnect fitting just behind passenger side tire. We normally setup a camp chef grill for cooking so this way I don't have to disconnect a tank for it. The tanks are setup with a dual tank automatic switchover regulator. Inside the camper I use a Wave 6 catalytic propane heater, it works well we have used it quite a bit already and it keeps us warm and is safe. Just for extra safety I installed smoke and carbon monoxide detectors in the trailer since we sleep with the heat on.

Now on to current projects, looking for advice...

I am starting to build the kitchenette in the front of the trailer. I plan to have a clothes closet on the left side and a very tall skinny closet on the right side for tall items (shovel, broom, fishing pole etc.). I will build upper cabinets, leaving a loft above them that we can stash bedding on top of when we fold up the bed. I plan also to install a simple sink with water pump using two 6 gallon water jugs, one for clean water, the other collecting gray water from sink drain.

The biggest design questions I have relate to what should I do for an electrical system? I understand AC and DC circuits and am capable of installing, the real hard part is how big (powerful) of a system do I need. Realistically I will have like 3 lights, 1 Fantastic Fan, and then maybe 2 AC outlets for convenience. I do not plan on having an air conditioner, and would even like to avoid having a generator if possible. When we camp, cooking is generally on propane stove, so don't plan on a microwave, and don't use coffee maker or stuff like that.

Also I have been researching the PD4045KV AC/DC distribution panel, but even the manufacturer's literature seems vague. I'm assuming the "converted" they mention is AC to DC for when you have shore power or generator? Could I use this setup with a DC to AC inverter like this one? https://www.amazon.com/Power-PWRIX12001 ... B00TI1D5JK

Please also help me find a good post or forum on best way to connect trailer battery to tow vehicle. I know the topic has been covered several times but I'm not sure what consensus is.

Enjoy some pictures below if you've read down this far!

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JohnnyK
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Re: Mini Toy_hauler cargo conversion

Postby Padilen » Tue May 23, 2017 7:44 pm

I didn't connect my pickup's charging to my CTC battery. I didn't see the need. It takes a lot of travel time to charge the CTC battery. My trips won't be far enough to. I charge before leaving and if needed I have a generator. My single 12 volt deep cycle lasts me for at least 3 days running water pump and fan.
As for the PD 4045, when not connected to shore/Gen you would need a battery for DC power. There is a couple of good threads on the PD4045. But my search doesn't work.


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Padilen
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Re: Mini Toy_hauler cargo conversion

Postby JohnnyK » Tue May 23, 2017 8:53 pm

Good point on batteries, my original post was so long I forgot about batteries. I plan to buy a pair of golf cart batteries. Hopefully charging them at home prior to leaving will get us through 5 or 6 days.

Im going to search more for PD4045 discussions.
JohnnyK
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