front storage drawer idea with external access

Discussion in 'A-Frame PopUps' started by Anthony Hitchings, Jul 17, 2020.

  1. Anthony Hitchings

    Anthony Hitchings Well-Known Member

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    The Basic Idea: (edits in italics)

    Forward of the dinette area, and/or under it, is a full width storage compartment. I have an idea to put in an access door on the outside wall at both ends of this compartment, put compact rollers on the ALiner floor - wheels up, and install a full with "U" box (about 73" long) that can roll at least half way out either (open) access door. This keeps stability issues easy and no fancy hardware is needed.

    This idea does not fully utilize the storage space as it exists today - but I very greatly detest the under seat storage features - and need to use the space somehow.

    Construction is likely all plywood, very little metal of any kind (except for fixed load bearing wheels). Maybe with fiberglassed corner seams.I may try PTFE tape for lateral guides (TBD).

    So that's it in a nutshell

    Any comments - let me hear them.

    BTW - I will add a full width plywood diaphragm on the fwd side of this cubby space to help with vertical strength issues - to compensate for the holes in the outside walls. This diaphragm will take outside wall loads back to the main chassis rails.
     
    Last edited: Jul 17, 2020
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  2. MEGEDH

    MEGEDH New Member

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    Like the option on the Forest River Rockwood A-Frames?

    Rockwood.jpg
     

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  3. Anthony Hitchings

    Anthony Hitchings Well-Known Member

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    Functionally - same as the option on the Forest River Rockwood A-Frames. But with more benefit - becasue it bypasses the seating area. That Rockwood has an accessible lift up lid - it does not need to be slide-out. Rockwood put money and trouble and extra weight into something that is not really needed.
     
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  4. Strawhouse

    Strawhouse Well-Known Member

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    I had the same issues re storage access, so I added 2 baggage doors—one at the front driver’s side under the bench seat, and the other rear psgr side under the bed. Best move ever!
     
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  5. Jim Whitehouse

    Jim Whitehouse New Member

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    Have been pondering the same. Take out the outdoor shower add cargo door, access to under roadside bench. Area is catchall now. Increase organized storage.
     
  6. Anthony Hitchings

    Anthony Hitchings Well-Known Member

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    Jim

    any tips to offer on installing the doors?
     
  7. Sotovoce

    Sotovoce Active Member

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    I've seen pictures online where people have added the exterior access doors, but our Expedition came with 3, 1 under each dinette seat and 1 under the bed. Inside we never lift a dinette seat to access storage and only lift the bed infrequently since part of that storage is not accessible from outside. Those exterior doors are great! Keep looking and you should find the posts where others have installed the doors. I'm sorry I can't be more help.
     
  8. DiamondGirl

    DiamondGirl Well-Known Member

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    Turtle3863 on YouTube added a new door to his Aliner and uploaded a video on it.

    Check it out...



    Happy Camping...[ALPU][PUT]
     
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  9. Strawhouse

    Strawhouse Well-Known Member

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  10. Anthony Hitchings

    Anthony Hitchings Well-Known Member

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    The doors opened today, genrally well made, but not door is not totally aligned square with fame (tho each seems square in its own right). The piano hinges were screwed in place by the "Axe and Hammer School of Carpentry" - so I will flatten out the bent regions and reassemble them. I will leave the doors off while I install the frames (its so much easier). Size looks perfect insofar as cutting the opening

    I took the hinges off for some panel-beating. :)
     

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    Last edited: Jul 27, 2020
  11. Mark U

    Mark U New Member

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    Not cheap but Lee Valley has some really heavy duty slides that might be useful (might have to split the width though): https://www.leevalley.com/en-ca/sho.../58870-double-locking-extra-heavy-duty-slides

    Alternatively, I just put a set of gas struts under the rear bench in my Aliner Ranger 12 a couple of weeks ago. Made a huge difference to how usable that space is, now it will move easily with one hand and then stay in pretty much any position. A lot cheaper too, I used a pair of these: https://www.princessauto.com/en/detail/56-lb-27-in-universal-lift-support/A-p8559288e (although I got them for $8.99 each on sale, still $12.99 isn't bad at all) plus some generic gate hinges. In my case I just hinged it across the back and the space works out that there's room for the cushions when it's open. If it's still awkward to get at you could probably do something a bit more complicated and have the lids rise up as well.
     
  12. Anthony Hitchings

    Anthony Hitchings Well-Known Member

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    Both doors installed - we will do the next trip without the sliding drawer (built/installed) and see if the doors alone are all that we need.
     

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  13. Anthony Hitchings

    Anthony Hitchings Well-Known Member

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    I needed a cable management solution for the cables blocking the new drivers side cargo door - voila - several long screws and some zip ties to the rescue. On a side note - I wound up replacing one strut beside the cargo door with a deeper strut, notched to allow passage of the wires.
     

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  14. TRR

    TRR Active Member

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    Nice!
     
  15. DiamondGirl

    DiamondGirl Well-Known Member

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    Cool modification.

    Happy Camping...[ALPU][PUT]
     
  16. Steveo4090

    Steveo4090 Well-Known Member

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    I use these at my house. They're great because they separate the different wires and clip shut. Convenient if you ever need to remove anything or add to it.

    https://www.amazon.com/Gardner-Bend...+nail+on+Gardner+bender&qid=1596393052&sr=8-4
     
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  17. Anthony Hitchings

    Anthony Hitchings Well-Known Member

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    we are really enjoying the two cargo doors, and we have not even left the driveway. Now the trick is to not overload the tongue weight.
    So far, up front, we have:

    2 deluxe reclining camp chairs
    folding camp table
    Cleanwaste folding toilet
    40 ft extension cord for portable 100W solar panel
    30 ft security cable for same
    shore power extension cord (20A) and plug adapter
    2 gallons H2O

    and we may add:
    4 chocks and two levelling pads
     
  18. Anthony Hitchings

    Anthony Hitchings Well-Known Member

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    We finished two short trips over the Sierras - the two cargo doors are a real winner - I will not need to follow through on my original idea.
     

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