Has anyone added an extra slot in the frame for a table support pole?

Discussion in 'My Favorite Mods, Tips, Tricks (and Blunders!)' started by tallshmo, Aug 16, 2019.

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  1. tallshmo

    tallshmo New Member

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    I'm building an outdoor table/chuck box to hang on the existing support rail. The camper came with a grill that sits on the rail with one of those metal support poles that fits into a slot in the camper frame. I'm thinking about using that existing slot and adding another slot for an addition pole (since the table will be about 4' long, it needs more than one support).

    Has anyone ever cut an extra slot in the frame? Do you have any tips or suggestions?
     
  2. GreyFox

    GreyFox Well-Known Member

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    I'm unclear as to exactly what you have in mind but to answer your question I did install a second shelf I could hang off the side of our Fleetwood Santa Fe.

    [​IMG]

    As you are probably aware popups have nothing but air between the exterior and interior walls so I added my own support so the exterior wall wouldn't bend from the weight of whatever I might put on that shelf.

    [​IMG]
     
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  3. tallshmo

    tallshmo New Member

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    Sorry for not being clear. I am talking about the metal poles that fit into slots in the metal frame along the bottom of the camper. Same concept as the poles that hold up the beds. My outdoor grill uses one of these poles and I was asking about adding another slot in the metal frame.

    You do bring up another point though. The other option I am considering is brackets. Did you just put a piece of plywood inside the wall?
     
  4. Shaman1

    Shaman1 Well-Known Member

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    I made a shelf to hold a window AC (before I got the roof AC) and I welded support brackets to the frame.
     
  5. GreyFox

    GreyFox Well-Known Member

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    Yes - that allowed me to run screws through the bracket, the camper's exterior metal skin, and into the 3/4" plywood brace sitting against the inside surface of the exterior wall.
     
  6. Orchid

    Orchid Sharp Shootin' Grandma

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    Wow, that is REALLY nice! It's what I had in mind (the empty one) when I told my DH to lose the stove and make us a nice wood shelf to put there with the hardware. I was horrified with what he came up. So horrified that I would never post a picture of it. I'm going to take over the project myself and use a wire shelf I found a thrift store. Haven't gotten the embarrassing "thing" he made out of the shed to figure out how to attach the hardware yet.
     
  7. tallshmo

    tallshmo New Member

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    Follow-up question: how hard is it to get inside the wall? I have dinette benches on the other side.
     
  8. bheff

    bheff Well-Known Member

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    Pick up the cushion and look at the plywood it was sitting on. Most have a hinge.
     
  9. GreyFox

    GreyFox Well-Known Member

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    Every trailer is different, in my case there was a cabinet (shown in the pic below) so I disassembled it to reveal the inside of the exterior wall. Cabinets in popups aren't really cabinets, just an assembly of panels - a dinette seat wouldn't be any different, remove some screws and it all comes apart.

    [​IMG]
     
  10. CampingFamily1

    CampingFamily1 Active Member

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    The table posted above is a beautiful piece of woodworking.

    In our case we needed something larger, and it was easier to buy rather than build so we got these tables

    [​IMG]

    There are more pics and descriptions at this link
     
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  11. MNTCamper

    MNTCamper Active Member

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    I would recommend an adjustable folding table leg, it is what I use on my 2'x4' table. Works great and cheap on Amazon.
     
  12. tallshmo

    tallshmo New Member

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    Do you have a link to it? I've looked on Amazon for something like that.
     
  13. MNTCamper

    MNTCamper Active Member

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    Look on Amazon and eBay. Can't remember where I got mine, but it has worked great for more than 10 years now. Mine is mounted down past the stove, but still under the awning. It is a single adjustable pole.
     
  14. WrkrBee

    WrkrBee Well-Known Member

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    A picture of the existing slot would be helpful. I assume this slot is close to the center of a rail, about 1 1/4" long, and less than 1/4" wide. If so, being 4' away from the other slot, it should be fine. Lay it out, drill a line of holes smaller than the final width. Connect the holes with a round file or rotary bit. Leave the slot ends rounded to prevent stress cracks.
     
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  15. hayyward

    hayyward Active Member

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    We made our own adjustable legs using bamboo. We bought two long bolts with nuts, glued the nut inside the bamboo so the bolt can turn to adjust the height of each leg. The underside, outside corners of the table has two shallow, hard plastic chair tips to receive the bolt head (it stays clean up there) and two more chair tips are screwed into 3"x3" plywood feet that the bottom of the leg sits in to keep it from sinking into the dirt. The legs come off readily and stow in no space at all yet are held completely secure by the weight of the table when in use. We have used these on every camping trip for over 20 years.
     
  16. MNTCamper

    MNTCamper Active Member

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    I just did a search for folding adjustable table leg. Several come up.
     
  17. tallshmo

    tallshmo New Member

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    I haven't been able to find exactly what I'm looking for. I find legs that can click into preset heights, but that doesn't really work for unlevel campgrounds. I want something super adjustable and easy to use. A lot of the legs I find that match my criteria are not tall enough. One idea I have is taking the legs off this table and adding more adjustment holes. Another idea is making some sort of folding hinge for these poles.
     
  18. lot_lizard

    lot_lizard New Member

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    If you are looking for it to be infinitely variable heights, the compression/tension clamps like you have above are about your only bet. They are called telescoping clamps and come in a few variations (twist lock, lever lock, etc) but ultimately they apply compression/tension to pole of the small diameter (the one inside the other). Not sure how adventurous of a DIY you are trying for, but you are going to want a larger diameter set of poles if you going this route (I would think 1.5" would be ideal), and still will need to be mindful of what you set on the table if only using a single pole. Something with a pin mechanism creates a positive lock and would hold considerably more given the same size rods. With a pin lock, you would be able to get "close" to level if the table is as long as your current. The longer the table the more level it can be set using an identical rod (further from the pivot).

    Since your camper will be level already (or I hope so :) ), maybe you shouldn't abandon your original idea. It seems like easiest/cleanest approach to me. You would have the track mounted to the edge of your table (slides on the side of the camper like a grill), and then have the pole mounted to the bottom of the table that hooks into your existing base clip for the grill. I'm not familiar with your camper, but if you feel the angle of the rod is not sufficient to hold something that long, add another clip directly below the existing one and make the pole longer. Just duplicate the same concept as your beds. The only difference is you have no need for a horizontal pole (your table acts as the horizontal pole since it is fixed to the camper with the track and owns the pole's pivot). This would be extremely strong if use proper hardware at your pivot point.

    Only downside to using the grill track with any of your approaches... it will be "tough" to get the table to slide into the track smoothly without binding if you are doing alone (the longer and/or skinnier the table, the tougher). To avoid scratching your PuP up... might want to plan on this being a 2-person job to assemble.

    EDIT: I would abandon the idea of adding a slot to the subframe and the two pole idea. No need. Keep it simple but use adequate hardware with a single pole
     
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  19. Mat Kyne

    Mat Kyne Member

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    Be-Ce, Squeeker and tallshmo like this.
  20. tallshmo

    tallshmo New Member

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