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Vagabond Drifter Camper Buildout and Mods

Discussion in 'Tonneau Covers, Caps and Shells' started by MTNHABITOVERLAND, Mar 27, 2018.

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  1. Jun 13, 2021 at 10:08 AM
    #5681
    Kclamer

    Kclamer Well-Known Member

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    2.5" lift, 4.88 gears
    I got the drifter last spring and VO installed the mounting brackets. The awning I bought this spring and put it on myself. I didn't have any delay in getting the Drifter because of Alu Cab. You may want to reach out to VO to find out if your awning is causing a delay.
     
  2. Jun 13, 2021 at 10:14 AM
    #5682
    chetterthecat

    chetterthecat Well-Known Member

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    OR
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    How long did the alu cab take from order to delivery?
     
  3. Jun 13, 2021 at 5:45 PM
    #5683
    Kclamer

    Kclamer Well-Known Member

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    2.5" lift, 4.88 gears
    About 1 month.
     
    Wackyhacky and chetterthecat like this.
  4. Jun 19, 2021 at 8:11 AM
    #5684
    anomalyTRD

    anomalyTRD Well-Known Member

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    VO Nomad
    Does anyone have recommendations on mounting cross bars to the roof L-track? I'm looking to support up to two canoes or kayaks.
     
  5. Jun 19, 2021 at 8:41 AM
    #5685
    JasonLee

    JasonLee Hello? I'm a truck.

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    This is a low profile one - not sure if the roof fan will derail this option though.

    @socalexpeditions - where's your content on the Yakima stuff?
     
  6. Jun 19, 2021 at 9:50 PM
    #5686
    bigdumplings

    bigdumplings Member

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    They will sell you front runner bars for the l track for like $300 they are pretty solid and awesome cause they take standard bolts. I had a Thule aerobar on my taco before drifter. I looked into adapting them but just said screw it and went with their front runner option. I think they can handle quite a lot of weight, so far all I’ve had on is a cargo box.
     
  7. Jun 20, 2021 at 5:05 AM
    #5687
    anomalyTRD

    anomalyTRD Well-Known Member

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    Does front runner make the feet that go in the L-track?
     
  8. Jun 20, 2021 at 11:21 AM
    #5688
    tacomgee

    tacomgee just ain't care....

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    Mostly whatever sweet stuff I can find at Vatozone
    I believe the feet are a VO custom supplied option.
    Formed and powdercoated. Very stout.
     
    tyfoon11 and anomalyTRD like this.
  9. Jun 22, 2021 at 7:37 AM
    #5689
    Trdooper

    Trdooper Well-Known Member

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    BAMF custom makes them for VO so you know they are strong. They can be ordered at different heights depending on your needs. VO will mount Frontrunner crossbars too if you want. I added my own 80/20 crossbars to match the Prinsu rack. Easy and strong. 20210601_170954.jpg
     
    MJonaGS32, anomalyTRD and rob1208 like this.
  10. Jun 22, 2021 at 5:28 PM
    #5690
    Eze1139

    Eze1139 Well-Known Member

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    Eric
    Reno NV
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    Finally got most of the Drifter functioning...not done, but functioning lol

    This has been a two years in the making build.

    Just in time for a family trip out to High Rock Desert in Northern Nevada. Raining & 70 the last time we went, sunny & 103 this time.
    thumbnail_IMG_5188.jpg thumbnail_IMG_5237.jpg

    In the bed there is a Redarc controller & Battleborn battery hooked up. Super happy with both. Set it & forget it. Only ran my truck for about 20min/day to charge up the Battleborn & had power for the fridge all day & fan all night. Very happy with it.

    The 1/4" plywood needs some stiffening & tie down to the corner bed anchor for stability but overall it did well on the trip. The t nuts & thread bar is a solid anchorage option from the sides. Now if I could just be a good craftsman...or electrician. Lots of loose wires to organize, wire runs to redo & other odds and ends but I got a fridge, lights & thankfully a fan for the 100 degree days to cool off the camper at night.
    thumbnail_IMG_5294.jpg

    One part that didn't work is the battery monitor. I think the inexpensive Amazon one https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B07CTKYFTG/ref=ppx_yo_dt_b_asin_title_o00_s00?ie=UTF8 I installed just has a quirk in it and needs replaced. Shows charge while I am drawing power with the fridge & lights. Yes I did reverse wires to check but am open to other suggestions. Replacement is on its way just to check & see. Hope it works since I already drilled out the hole in the corner panel and I generally like the size, function & price of the unit. 40A breaker above is for solar input/future upgrades. Need brackets made before I can mount that on top - 160 Renogy unit recommended by @socalexpeditions. (Thank you for all the help)

    The fridge mount is great. Nice & solid. Couple straps https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B01KP24GMK/ref=ppx_yo_dt_b_asin_title_o05_s00?ie=UTF8
    Bimini anchors https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B07V9NKM26/ref=ppx_yo_dt_b_asin_image_o05_s00?ie=UTF8 off Amazon, some nuts & bolts from HD along with an extended bed bolt someone on here posted and I was good to go.

    Power was ran outside the bed to a BlueSea 12V cigarette adapter I drilled into the little bed light cover. Wish it was a little more solid mounting but good enough for now. Has held together this whole time. Fridge continues to be one of our favorite purchases. The replacement Mountain Hatch tailgate cover has been solid as well.
    thumbnail_IMG_5295.jpg

    In the front I have a @Mr.PowerTrays blank tray that I modified for an engine bay six circuit fuse block fed by a 40A breaker along with a 40A breaker feeding the Redarc/bed. There is plenty of space on it for something else if needed. I also added new battery terminal & main ground cable for more connection options. The single white cable running along the back is an ignition on circuit cable for the Redarc.
    On the passenger side is a SleeOffroad ARB bracket and single stage compressor. I wish I was handy enough to build my own bracket but I am very pleased with this one. I Use the compressor for blowing off some dust before opening everything up in camping & airing up all the tires at the end of the weekend. Solid unit. May look into a remote tank somewhere in the future.
    thumbnail_IMG_5297.jpg

    Next up is reinforcing & insulating the tailgate to try to keep some heat away from the fridge. Definitely tinting the Drifter windows too. Both the gf & I noticed sizeable temperature drops in our cars when we tinted our windows.

    thumbnail_IMG_5292.jpg
    thumbnail_IMG_5296.jpg
    thumbnail_IMG_5299.jpg
    thumbnail_IMG_5298.jpg
     
    Last edited: Jun 23, 2021
  11. Jun 23, 2021 at 4:47 AM
    #5691
    s.e.charles

    s.e.charles Well-Known Member

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    pretty snazzy set-up
     
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  12. Jun 25, 2021 at 7:20 PM
    #5692
    otis24

    otis24 Hard Shell Taco

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    OtisBound Bodonkadonk
    That's a sweet set up.
    I have the same battery monitor. Mine would only show discharge and how many amps were being discharged. It would not show charge going into the battery.
    My issue was that I had the ground going from the battery to the shunt plus another ground at the battery. When I moved that second ground downstream from the shunt it started working.

    I think I just got the same dcdc/solar charge controller. I had a ctek but it crapped out after almost 3 years. I'm really hoping the redarc works longer. They have a great reputation.
     
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  13. Jun 26, 2021 at 8:56 AM
    #5693
    Eze1139

    Eze1139 Well-Known Member

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    Thanks. It was a super solid start and worked great on its first trip. Next power mods are installing a switch for the Redarc charge profile so I can force it out of lithium mode in the winter and can keep charging when it gets cold. Will also be adding some small stick on 12v heat packs run off a temp controller to try to keep the battery & Redarc warm enough to keep operating on the colder days.

    I have a ground bar on the back of the panel with all grounds on it-truck, solar, blue sea fuse panel etc which then goes through the shunt (short small wire) and to the battery. Little white wire is a small positive run to the battery.
    [​IMG]
    Will try just plugging in a new screen to see if its just that or the cable which I nicked running it through the cable gland. Hope it's that easy.
     
  14. Jun 26, 2021 at 9:07 AM
    #5694
    otis24

    otis24 Hard Shell Taco

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    I hadn't thought of adding a switch to the Redarc so you can change the charge profiles. That's an excellent idea.

    Good luck with the new screen!
     
  15. Jun 26, 2021 at 1:21 PM
    #5695
    Eze1139

    Eze1139 Well-Known Member

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    Partial success testing a new screen. Showing discharge and more realistic power draws with everything on. Battery is also probably dead from running the fridge for days without a charge. Now to just rewire it all back together, reprogram it with a full charge and test it out. Will also check the cable and try to find the root cause of the BO monitor. Hopefully just the cable and I can sell a nice, gently used (sans cable) battery monitor for cheap ;)

    As for the switch I saw that idea a while ago in the thread so I will give credit to this thread and the people on it. Some great ideas out there.

    Read on from around here for a bunch of good info from others and some great ideas regarding the cold. https://www.tacomaworld.com/threads...ildout-and-mods.540940/page-244#post-24778500

    Edit: It was right under my nose. @joeydurango worked with Redarc for the charge profile switch if you are running Lithium and need to charge below 32 degrees. FYI Redarc is extremely helpful setting up their systems and I used them along with a few other electrically inclined folks to design my system.
     
  16. Jun 26, 2021 at 2:11 PM
    #5696
    Kclamer

    Kclamer Well-Known Member

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    2.5" lift, 4.88 gears
    For your viewing pleasure:

    20210626_153307.jpg
     
  17. Jun 26, 2021 at 5:47 PM
    #5697
    alldownhill

    alldownhill Well-Known Member

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    Anybody DIY’d awning brackets for a 270*? Any reason some small lengths of rectangular tubing wouldn’t work just fine? Are brackets even necessary? Can you just flush mount?
     
  18. Jun 28, 2021 at 7:45 AM
    #5698
    joeydurango

    joeydurango Nightfall Overland

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    @venisontaco Whoops, missed this... somehow was unsubscribed from the thread. If you're still curious, here are my thoughts regarding my unorthodox HiLift mounting solution. No problems so far, none at all. Seems people have their doubts, and that's fine. Works for me though.

    -"It's too heavy": Not anywhere near as heavy as a RocketBox and gear, or the many other things people mount on their roof. I come from using a FWC camper, and due to that experience I purposefully built my Drifter out to keep the weight as low as possible. I didn't have another spot for the jack. Having the jack mounted on the side keeps it off the roof lifting weight and affects my overall handling feel ~0%.

    -"Branch catcher": If I ran trails back east this might be a problem. Colorado/Utah trails are pretty wide open.

    -"Dangerous": As if high-clearance front bumpers, disconnected sway bars, and trucks consistently run hundreds of pounds over GVWR aren't? As if a HiLift mounted on a rear bumper or Jeep hood isn't? Life is dangerous. We choose the risks we take.

    -"Metal fatigue": Again, not THAT heavy. So far, so good. I'll keep an eye on it (as I do with everything).

    -"Poserjack": There's a reason I went with the most boring color option I could find. I actually really dislike the fact that my HiLift is visible, because so many use it as a bro status symbol. But function over form always wins out for me, and I didn't have anywhere else to put it.

    -"Unnecessary": Probably. But I like to be prepared. I didn't want a winch, but I wanted the ability to do some emergency winching, as well as easily lift the truck if necessary. This fits the bill, and is much lighter than a winch - which would also probably spend its life unused.

    Maybe I'll see fit to change it up in the future. And maybe not. So far, no reason to.

    Hope that helps. :thumbsup:
     
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  19. Jun 28, 2021 at 8:46 AM
    #5699
    otis24

    otis24 Hard Shell Taco

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    3M Marine 5200 is good stuff along with something like self drilling self tapping screws or nuts and bolts.
     
  20. Jun 29, 2021 at 1:07 PM
    #5700
    OG_BajaTaco

    OG_BajaTaco Well-Known Member

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    I got the Alu-Cab wall kit for my 270 Shadow-Awn so that I'll have some more versatility and options with the layout. I also got a couple Wolf-packs with the extended top lids. And I got a "medium" size aluminum Swiss-Link box which fits perfectly in the aisle between the galley cabinet and bench cabinet, and also doubles as a step. So far, I haven't needed additional storage so the Wolf packs will sit out most times, but they'll be nice for longer or specialized trips when carrying extra things. The wall kit comes with a nice carry bag but I'm using the Swiss-Link box to carry it along with my shower basin and curtain. I added some L-track to the top lids on the side bench cabinets along with a cargo net and it's working out well.

    3AF5FBFB-E700-4C64-A53A-E5485A46FA35.jpg

    56FD5D8D-7864-4CF6-95BD-1D00A70B599D.jpg

    47D5BEC3-9EE2-48CE-9AB8-DC907966A652.jpg

    4BE5D64E-5BAD-4277-9BB9-BA1779570514.jpg

    E3EABD3B-BA7D-4B34-82BA-4482681AF1ED.jpg

    (FYI, I ordered the wall kit and Wolf packs from Mule Expedition Outfitters and the process went very smooth. Everything was in stock and they shipped to me promptly. They have a good cart / shipping system set up and no glitches. I ordered the Swiss-Box from Camping World and that went smooth also but they didn't ship as fast as Mule.)
     
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