Everglade Camper Build (cont'd)

The people at Quality Upholstery in Las Vegas helped me with the cushions. I brought them the material I wanted to use and the measurements I needed and they did rest. A couple of the cushions were salvaged from the old camper.

The window at the table is one I was able to salvage from my old camper. Good thing, because I was quoted over $700.00 to make a window of that size. There is a large 4-door cabinet just above the dinette. Above the dinette are 2 halogen, flush-mounted swivel lights aimed at the table (one light would have been enough, though). I think I may put these on a dimmer switch.

Just behind the dinette is a closet just as Glen-L had designed it, except the bottom third opens from the outside to make storage for propane. I hated to give up this space, but had to find some place for the tanks.

#3 - The functional kitchen. Well, I believe I accomplished this. Starting from the rear of the counter is the 4 burner stove with oven, then there is a 12" wide section of open counter. Under this section of counter is the 10 gallon water heater.

Then you'll find a double stainless steel sink with a Moen faucet with a wand on a hose; very nice and works well with pump pressure. That left about 24" of free counter space. I built in cabinets above all of this area with lights below that light the stove area and the sink. I did not install a range hood (I salvaged one from the old Lance but preferred to get more cabinet room instead). There is a fantastic fan in the ceiling just above the stove though.

I also salvaged the 2-door Domestic refrigerator/ freezer from the Lance (knock on wood, this is still working well). I found a tag on it that dates it to 1986. I replaced the door panels to match the interior walls. They are a Georgia Pacific interior 1/8" X 4' X 8' panel, tan faux finish. The stove/sink counter has a back splash from the counter up to the cabinets made from the same tile board as the bathroom.

I have 2 large solar panels on the roof and I put the controller panel below the sink along with junctions for the tail light pigtail and an inverter. I set 2 Trojan 6-volt (wired in series) deep cycle batteries in the side wells of the truck bed and the wiring for them goes to the solar controller and then on to the 12 volt fuse panel.

With all the plumbing (hot and cold water, drainage and holding tank fill hoses), Propane gas lines and electrical wiring, there's not much room for storage under the counter. I did manage to get 3 small drawers in for utensils and silverware.

#4 - One good bed. Keep in mind, I'm 6'2" 260 pounds and growing, AND I'M PLANNING ON SLEEPING IN A CABOVER THAT IT'S PRIMARY SUPPORT IS BY A COUPLE 1X4's? To make matters worse, my wife says she won't sleep in the front half of the bed. That puts my fat a$$ out there as far as I can put it. I have worried about this the whole time I've been building this camper, so very early on, I made changes in the original design. At the roof line there is supposed to be a 1 x 4 the full length of the roof. I decided to use a 1 x 4 and I epoxied another 1 x 4 to the bottom edge.

The bottom support for the cabover was supposed to be a 1 x 4 that came back to just in front of the window and was cantilevered from there. I decided I'd use a piece that ran back, just in front of the entrance door. The wall section just below the cabover (at the back wall of the truck cab) was specified to be built from 1 x 2's but I used 2 x 2's.

During construction, I'd been up there by myself and it all seemed to hold me just fine, but on BLACK FRIDAY, in DEATH VALLEY, California I was to try it (with my wife) for a whole night. I barely slept a wink that night! It held! The next day I was outside looking over the outer skin for buckles, but found none. I slept like a baby the next night.

One good bed. This was also accomplished. We are using a cheap 6" foam queen size RV mattress with a 3"memory foam mattress topper and it was fine. At the head of the bed is a BIG storage cabinet that seconds as a headboard. It has a Staron top running the full width of the bed. Above this cabinet is the stereo cabinet. I built-in a Pioneer stereo that has IPOD capabilities and is connected to a Pioneer 6 disc CD changer. In this cabinet I also built-in storage for CD's. This didn't look as I hoped it would, but works well. The Pioneer stereo is in an awkward place, but it also is equipped with a remote so it can be controlled from anywhere inside the camper. My wife loves it. We felt pretty "techie" with our new stereo connected to an IPOD that had 671 songs at our disposal and she brought along her Dell laptop and a Netflix movie that we watched.

I haven't had the nerve to get it all weighed yet, but I'm sure I ran over on my weight for this 1991 Ford F-250 pick up. It carries it well and I have done modifications to the truck suspension to help, and this camper really should be on a 1 ton truck, but for now it will be home here.

Editor's Note: See Barry's Everglade contstruction photos
in Customer Photos and read his construction notes
in the RV Plans Project Registry.