Popup Camper Build from the ground up!

Discussion in 'PopUpPortal TV' started by LanternLightFarm, Jul 16, 2016.

  1. LanternLightFarm

    LanternLightFarm New Member

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    Hello all! I've been a long time lurker in the forums and have finally decided that its time to upgrade my old tent to something with a few more creature comforts. Over the last year I was inspired by many of the great restoration threads here to seek out a used PUP of my own, but have failed to find something that fits the bill. So being a cabinet maker by trade I decided that I could probably build a PUP from the ground up and still be cheaper than buying new. After looking a tons of brands and layouts, I decided that building a clone of a Living Lite 6.0 was the way to go. However I'll be building in a few more creature comforts, the short list includes:

    -12v and 110v electrical systems
    -Cassette toilet
    -Sink w/ 5 gallons of fresh water storage
    -Built in 2 burner propane stove
    -LED Lighting
    -A/C & Heat

    I thought it would be fun to document the build and share it with others, here is the link to part 1, many more to come!


    https://youtu.be/Qreqra9Pq7Q
     
    CheekyRunner and #iluvoutdoors like this.
  2. edh

    edh Active Member

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    I'll be very interested in seeing future installments so thank you for sharing this. What brand is the trailer you're using?
     
  3. LanternLightFarm

    LanternLightFarm New Member

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    May 16, 2016
    The trailer is a 5x8 Ultra Tow from Norther Tool, all aluminum framework.
     
  4. edh

    edh Active Member

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    Jun 2, 2008
    Thanks. It looked like a pretty good trailer for a kit trailer. I'll be interested in what you think of it come your next video.
     
  5. LanternLightFarm

    LanternLightFarm New Member

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    May 16, 2016
    Part 2 - Building the floor: https://youtu.be/0EKHtAg_Nmc

    I'm using 3/8" plywood bonded to 1" blue foam board to keep the weight down but make it extremely rigid. The Living Lite 6.0 dry weight is 712 pounds with 86lbs of tongue weight. It will be a good challenge to see how close I come with my clone given the upgrades and drastically different construction materials. Shipping weight of the trailer is listed at 186 pounds (I think that is exaggerated), and I'm guessing the floor weighs in the neighborhood of 50lbs.

    Next video will cover the framing of the box.
     
  6. edh

    edh Active Member

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    You are definitely stressing light weight. I might be a bit worried about that floor not being rigid enough, so will be interested in what you think of it when it's all finished.

    What are you planning for your sides and roof? This is very interesting stuff you are doing, keep up the good work!
     
  7. LanternLightFarm

    LanternLightFarm New Member

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    May 16, 2016
    Made some more progress on the pup this week. Side walls are up, I've left the blue foam insulation out so I can complete the rough wiring, hopefully by next week I'll have had the opportunity to test fit the top!

    https://youtu.be/PBUPRxApF8w
     
  8. Haybale

    Haybale I'd rather be camping!!

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    San Diego via MN
    Awesome build thread, great detail!!

    My question, why didn't you put the storage box on front, less chance of sway if added weight to the tongue vs behind the axle?
     
  9. LanternLightFarm

    LanternLightFarm New Member

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    May 16, 2016
    Good question, and one that I thought about quite a bit. I initially thought about putting it on the front but worried about increasing tongue load, and I also thought about cutting down the trailer frame to omit it completely but that would have required relocating the axle to maintain a 60/40 weight distribution. So in the end I decided to leave it on the rear like the factory built quicksilver and be sure to not overload it. At most I see myself using it for bike storage, never been a fan of external storage racks!
     
  10. Haybale

    Haybale I'd rather be camping!!

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    San Diego via MN
    Where do you plan to store the battery and propane tank? If on the tongue, then you should be ok with some load out back. On my pup I am actually considering a longer tongue on so I can mount storage up front and get rid of some of the sway. On a light pup weight distribution is very important.
     
  11. LanternLightFarm

    LanternLightFarm New Member

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    May 16, 2016
    A/C unit will be up on the tongue, battery will be right over the axle, 5 gallons of fresh water will just in front of the axle, no propane bottle - I'll be using the small 1lb cylinders with my stove as of right now.

     
  12. silvermickey2002

    silvermickey2002 Morris County, NJ

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    Morris County, NJ
    Just watched Part 1-3, that is a nice build! Can't wait to see the next video!!
     
  13. JimmyM

    JimmyM Well-Known Member

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    Franklin, MA
    Make sure you vent your battery box to the exterior if you're using a flooded deep cycle battery. The vapors from charging it in an enclosed space can not only be explosive, but will corrode any metal nearby.

    Or get an AGM battery. They're pricey, but are sealed units.
     
  14. kcsa75

    kcsa75 Well-Known Member

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    Kansas City
    Subscribed.
     
  15. LanternLightFarm

    LanternLightFarm New Member

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    May 16, 2016
    Already planned on it, battery will be mounted under the sofa in the rear of the pup vented to the outside rear of the trailer.

     
  16. JimmyM

    JimmyM Well-Known Member

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    Franklin, MA
    I don't doubt it. Had to say it though. But great work on the videos. Saw all 3 so far and subscribed. Can't wait to see more.
     
  17. LanternLightFarm

    LanternLightFarm New Member

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    May 16, 2016
    Didn't make as much progress this week as I had hoped, this Midwest heat and humidity sure can slow a guy down!

    https://youtu.be/AMCSg-6lLJk
     
  18. Dubbya

    Dubbya Wherever you go, there you are...

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    Steinbach, MB
    Very cool! LOVE the videos.

    I'm sure you've already picked out your exterior materials but I would have suggested laminated Dibond sign panel. Pricey but then again it's strong and already painted. [;)]

    Dibond Data Sheet

    Dibond Fabrication Manual

    Can't wait to see the next video! Keep 'em comin! [:D]
     
  19. JimmyM

    JimmyM Well-Known Member

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    Franklin, MA
    Nice work on the door latch. Must have been a pain working all that out.

    I would have thought the roof "rafters" would have an arch to them to shed rain when closed. This would have also given the "rafters" a greater bending modulus to support its own weight or that of snow (I forget where you live, that may not be an issue).
     
  20. 1380ken

    1380ken Well-Known Member

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    Great job. I wish that I could do good wood work. The only critical thing that I can think of is that your door gap is very tight. It may not be a problem as your is so well constructed but other pop ups have issues with everything flexing and either the door binding or the gap is too large.
     

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