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Thread: New Expedition Camper - Overland Explorer

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
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    Default New Expedition Camper - Overland Explorer

    So my four plus year process is nearing completion. Phase five was recently completed.

    Phase one was really about determining my needs. Expedition quality vehicle with the ability to sleep four, 4-wheel drive and the ability to tow 9000 pounds. There were/are other less important considerations but those are the main ones.

    Phase two was to decide upon a vehicle. I decided to try a LMTV so one was purchased. It was used for a few short day trips and one long multiple day trip last winter. I also added a receiver hitch and did one three day trip which involved towing my boat. Came to several conclusions. The LMTV is a wonderfully capable vehicle within it's design parameters. I decided that those parameters were too narrow to be a best fit for me. Therefore I purchased a F450 cab chassis model with diesel, crew cab and ability to have a 12' bed. This was ordered and delivered.
    Last edited by HowardH; 06-22-2017 at 05:45 PM.

  2. #2
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    Phase four was to deliver the F450 and build the flatbed. That has been done and I am already using the truck. I must say the fit, finish and attention to detail of the flatbed is superb. All my friends that shook their heads at my going ten hours away for a flatbed no longer do that upon seeing the finished product.

    Phase five I guess was to actually order and place a down payment on the camper. I am expecting a fall delivery. Also ordered super single wheels and will install 285/70/R19.5 tires. I made this choice based upon All Terrain Warriors and Overland Explorer's recommendation to stick with 19.5 wheels. Also ordered and have scheduled an ARB air locker for the front axle as well as their high capacity duel pump air compressor.

    I am sure I have missed some important details but I can always add them.

    I am very excited and eagerly anticipating using my new Overland Explorer camper for this fall's steelhead season.

  3. #3
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    What parameters of the LMTV were too narrow for you? Others might find your analysis helpful in making their own decisions.

  4. #4
    haven is offline Expedition Portal Moderator Expedition Leader
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    Photos, please!

  5. #5
    Join Date
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    Kerry, in no particular order

    Big and heavy. Over 20,000 pounds empty.

    Slow - yes you can install higher speed axles etc. They seem more of a help then a fix. My truck worked best at 35-45 MPH on non paved roads.

    Availability of parts and service. Despite what I was told about off the shelf parts etc. I didn't really find that to be the case. I live in an agricultural area with lots of heavy equipment also.

    More tractor like then truck like. No AC, or other amenities such as power windows. Everything is "rough" and utilitarian.

    Tall - really tall. Many people, ladies, especially complained about the difficulty in getting in.

    Poor fuel economy. No matter what you do it will always be a big heavy truck and it takes power to move pounds. I always got right at 6.6 mpg.

    Many things such as engine and transmission are rock solid. Other parts such as window cranks are down right cheap.

    I now understand how companies get tens of thousands of dollars into making these rigs "right" for civilian use.

    My conclusion was that after all the pluses and minuses were calculated you still needed time, knowledge and tools to keep the rig running. That is not my skill set.



    That being said there are some great features as well.

    Geared to be nice and slow and just WORK in that 25-45 MPH range and on rough non-paved roads. The only bad part is the travel time to reach those roads. LOL

    Ride is actually pretty good. Better then my F350 was. Also with dynamat sound deadening that loudest noise at 50 MPH was the tires.

    Short vehicle for a 12' bed.

    Tall with cab over wheels and a huge front windshield. The terrific visibility was very possibly my favorite part of the whole truck.
    Last edited by HowardH; 06-22-2017 at 06:03 PM. Reason: grammer

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
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    West Slope Northern Sierra Nevada
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    Howard,
    What a fine description of the woes/winners with the 1078. Nothing like hands on experience for those in the dark.
    Did you order the 450 with 4.30, or 4.88 gears and a factory L.S. rear end?
    I hope Mexico or other 3rd world countries are not in your plans.
    I like your methodical movement toward a purpose-built rig.
    The 19.5 tires will not allow you to lower the pressure for running in deep sand.
    I hope the super single tires and wheels are at least the wide model.
    Keep us informed of your fascinating build process.
    jefe
    2001.5 4WD Dodge 2500, HO-CTD, SB, QCab, NV5600, NV241HD, 4.10's, 3" lift steer brace Gen4 trkbar/tie rod/drag-link Front: 35 spline Dana 70 spindle conversion with M M locking hubs; Detroit TRUE TRAC Mosiers unit bearing&axle disconnect delete, AT3 315/75R16's on 7.5" steel wheels. Rear: 8 leaf, Stable Loads, 35 spline Dana 80, TRUE TRAC, AT3 315/75R16 on 10" wide Stockton steel wheels. 15K lb. winch, 1998 Lance Lite, 8'6", 165-s XTC, 200W solar.

  7. #7
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    yeah; I want to see this one through the building steps.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mundo4x4Casa View Post
    Howard,
    Did you order the 450 with 4.30, or 4.88 gears and a factory L.S. rear end?
    I hope Mexico or other 3rd world countries are not in your plans.
    The 19.5 tires will not allow you to lower the pressure for running in deep sand.
    I hope the super single tires and wheels are at least the wide model.
    Keep us informed of your fascinating build process.
    jefe
    4.10 limited slip. To me its a bit low. I hope the taller tires will drop the RPM enough. I just towed a 31' travel trailer from home to SLC and back. I pulled every grade, that speed constraints allowed, in top gear. Didn't down shift once. To me this means I have power to spare for a taller ratio.

    Not sure about the meaning of your Mexico comments.

    I'm not sure I agree with your comment about the 19.5 tires. All Terrain Warriors is very clear on the positive results they have achieved with these tires and the ability to air them down. All the way down to the 20-25 lb range. http://www.allterrainwarriors.com.au/news "Of all the Single Wheel Conversions that we have undertaken since making the change to the 19.5” tyres back in 2007, we have never had a customer report that they have broken a bead when aired down and many will air down well below our recommended minimum pressure in order to cope with a tricky situation."

    "The main factors that led ATW into developing SWC’s using 19.5” tyres were based on real world experiences and feedback from commercial operators and numerous privateers. Prior to 2007 all our SWC’s were based mainly on 37” x 16” tyre packages. We had limited success with these on 4x4 vehicles that were downrated to under 4.5 ton but all of our other customers with slightly heavier trucks were plaqued with constant wheel failures, costly tyre damage and excessive wear."

    The bottom line is that first and foremost you have to have the ability to carry the weight, everything else has to be secondary to that. Honestly I think the extra 800 lbs of the diesel engine is going to be more of a hindrance then any inability to air tires down. This truck will never go in sand like a half ton to say nothing of a jeep type vehicle.

    Not sure what you mean by wide model. My plan is 285/75/r19.5 so whatever wheel would be the appropriate width for that tire.
    Last edited by HowardH; 06-22-2017 at 06:58 PM.

  9. #9
    HowardH,

    Sounds like a fun project your working on.

    I think Mundo is talking about the lack of Ultra Low Sulfer Diesel in Mexico and many other parts of the world.

    Here is a link to one of the many sites that talks about the issue;
    http://bajamary.com/media/Mexico-Diesel.php

    Safe travels,

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Location
    Moses Lake WA
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    222
    Could be. However a delete option is very affordable. End of problem.

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