Platform Camper Build

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BumpyTacos

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Enthusiast I

404
Fremont, CA, USA
First Name
Daniel
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Esterly
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23136

Hello OB,

I started a platform camper design for my tacoma some months back. After seeing some people make them and the price from manufacturers like GoFast I decided to make my own.

I worked in a sheet metal shop doing that and frame welding. Recently started doing some CNC machining as well.

Lots of CAD work, some tube notching, welding and sheet metal work. I’m around 50% done. Just thought I’d share some progress pics.

Hopefully done by end of February so I can use it for a weekend planned trip in March.

Cheers!
 

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OnlyTaco

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Expedition

Enthusiast III

1,154
Castro Valley CA
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4762

Hello OB,

I started a platform camper design for my tacoma some months back. After seeing some people make them and the price from manufacturers like GoFast I decided to make my own.

I worked in a sheet metal shop doing that and frame welding. Recently started doing some CNC machining as well.

Lots of CAD work, some tube notching, welding and sheet metal work. I’m around 50% done. Just thought I’d share some progress pics.

Hopefully done by end of February so I can use it for a weekend planned trip in March.

Cheers!
That's awesome! Good luck with it all. Let us know the progress. I'm nearby where you're at. Let me know if you need a helping hand. More than happy to swing by and help with what I can.
 
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BumpyTacos

Rank II
Member

Enthusiast I

404
Fremont, CA, USA
First Name
Daniel
Last Name
Esterly
Member #

23136

Hello again,

Well I spent around $250 in a large billet stock a couple of weeks ago. Spent the past few weekends doing some cnc work to machine up the hinges.

6 distinct parts- 4 bottom hinge plates that attach the bottom 8020 frame together. 4 top hinge plates that do the same. 4 top hinges- 2 LH, 2 RH. 4 bottom hinges - 2 LH, 2 RH

Still need to machine up some delrin sleeves for the front hinge to ride on. I’ll have an aluminum tube with some machined ends that will connect driver and passenger side hinges together.

Rear will have some type of latching mechanism. Most likely some type of pin/ spring system
 

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BumpyTacos

Rank II
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Enthusiast I

404
Fremont, CA, USA
First Name
Daniel
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Esterly
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23136

Quick little update from todays/tonight’s work.

Spent about 13 hours in the shop minus a quick in n out run. Machined up some delrin bushings with a flange for the hinges/hinge face to ride on.

Also made up a pair of machined parts to weld onto an aluminum bar to connect both sides of the hinges. Really old material that seemed to have some oxidation I couldn’t clean out. Pretty difficult to weld. Grinder and paint makes me the welder I ain’t.

Got the 8020 cut down to the length I wanted. Then machined clearances so I can insert the t nuts without having to take apart the frame.

Finally took the clekos out of the side doors and welded up the hinges to the sheet metal.

Should have all the doors/panels on tomorrow then I can work on shock mounts for the side/rear panels

Thanks for checking it out
 

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BumpyTacos

Rank II
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Enthusiast I

404
Fremont, CA, USA
First Name
Daniel
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Esterly
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23136

Little bit of progress this week and today.

Got the shock mounts done for the side and rear doors. Took a little more time than expected, but happy with the outcome.

Cut the tent top and bottom panels, drilled some holes for mounting. I also have the wrap for the top. Decided to lay it on to see what it would look like.

Finding a few issues here and there with the latch position for the rear door so I’ll end up doing some rework to make those work.
 

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BumpyTacos

Rank II
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Enthusiast I

404
Fremont, CA, USA
First Name
Daniel
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Esterly
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23136

Looks great. Daniel is that your shop? It's a nice one where you work?
Zim
Not mine, maybe one day. I have worked here since I was 14 during summers, then part time/full time through college until a couple years ago. So coming up on 12 years.

Currently just a little bit of moonlighting, running machines and welding.
 
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BumpyTacos

Rank II
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Enthusiast I

404
Fremont, CA, USA
First Name
Daniel
Last Name
Esterly
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23136

Little bit more work through the weekend.

Started out with modifying the rear door. I realized the latch mechanism and rear shock would interfere so I patched the cutout and made a new cutout. You can see the rear shock mount in the last photo.

Ended up cutting a little off of the rear door flanges (side ones), put a bend in the bottom of it so help bring back the rigidity. Welding on the hinge really warped the panel and it felt a little flimsy before anyway.

Made a stiffener for the top part of the rear window to also help with the warping during welding. Panel feels great,

I’ll end up putting a few holes in the stiffener so I can mount a light or hang some kitchen supplies, privacy curtain etc.

I think I’m going to relocate the side door latches higher so I don’t have to come up with some funky cutout in the tube for them to work properly.

I’ll also make some molle panels this week to mount on the front and side doors. Once I get those finished, I feel confident enough to put some body work and paint into the doors.

Waiting on some gasket material, t slot nuts and couple of misc. parts.

Got a camping trip coming up in a couple of weeks with some friends. Won’t finish in time, so I think I’ll slow things down a bit and try to make sure I get things done properly.

Thanks for following along!
 

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BumpyTacos

Rank II
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Enthusiast I

404
Fremont, CA, USA
First Name
Daniel
Last Name
Esterly
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23136

Some paint, plating, and assembly going on this week.

Got the top panel all mounted up, gaskets, t slot nuts.

Got the machined parts back from the platers in 2 days. Guess they owed the shop a favor so I got to reap the benefits.

Should have the tent frame fully assembled by this weekend. I’ve also been painting the side panels.

Just need to add the mounting for the truck bed, finish frame welding and painting.
 

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BumpyTacos

Rank II
Member

Enthusiast I

404
Fremont, CA, USA
First Name
Daniel
Last Name
Esterly
Member #

23136

Got the mounting system figured out. Two in the front and on each side.

Bent up an 1/8 bracket that welds to the tube. I was excited to get the paint onto the frame, so I purchased Steel It, weld through paint. Really digging the finish.

I cut some steel plate to use in the t slot bed rails. Welded those together and put a hole in them. I’ll need to add some material to keep the mount from twisting, but at the moment, I have some crush tubes that prevent everything from twisting.

Really excited with the progress.
 

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