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Thread: My 2006 Chevy Avalanche 2500, plans, and questions on 12v electrical system -

  1. #11
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Quote Originally Posted by makemuchoftime View Post
    Thanks Jeep -N, it's an 8.1. Won't have to sell this one if I get another trailer some day.
    We have the 6.0 in our Yukon 2500, when searching I really debated between the two engines, the 8.1 tows like a mule but for the dozen or so times a year we tow the boat the 6.0 is adequate. Great trucks for sure.
    We own a few Monteros

  2. #12
    Thanks for the comments and links…

    Hummelator – Thanks for the complement, the 2500s are hard to find… Like I said above, I jumped at this one as not only is it a 2500, it had a SnugTop, and other mods I was planning to do anyway and with relatively low mileage…. That was a good day. Thanks EBAY.

    Thanks Rayra, Chilliwak and bknudtsen!

    Lunchwagon…. Here you go:

    I built the drawers/sleeping platform to a height that his exactly level with the folded down seats.
    I have the drawer frame/sleeping platform base with carpeted ¾” ply on top in the back. The back of the frame is 2 – 2x6s, cut down to proper height and screwed together. The back of the platform in the bed sits on one of them, then the platform in the cab butts up against that with the other end on top of the folded seats.


    I mounted magnet catches in the corners with the idea of counter sinking metal disks into the underside of the sleeping platform to keep it in place while sleeping, but it works fine as is so I didn’t get around to finishing that. Also, the platform section for the cab originally was one piece that I’d slide out. I had to cut it in two pieces when I got my ARB fridge as it didn’t have the clearance when it was sitting on it, and even if it did, I wouldn’t want to have to pull it out from under the fridge when converting to sleep mode. As an added bonus while stacked in the bed, it provides a stop to keep the ARB from sliding sideways while driving.

    Note, I leave the cross-reinforcement bar attached to the tonneau (not folded down) as I wanted a more stable base for the platform, and I like having it there so things don’t slide off the tonneau onto my head when I’m sleeping. My sons (kids) like to sleep on the tonneau while I sleep down below. To make that happen when opening the midgate, I open it first to get just the bottom portion to open, then while holding that up, I take out the window, store it in its place and fold down the midgate the rest of the way. Make sure you decide it you want it like I have it, or folded down before taking you height measurements for the platform as the platform will need to sit a bit higher if you fold the cross bar down with the midgate.

    I still want the ability to use as a truck so the sleeping platform isn’t bolted to the drawer frame. The drawers have UHMW strips mounted underneath and lined up on UHMW tape stuck to the bed and it all comes out easily. Not using the rubber mat. Decided against drawer slides to keep it simpler and preserve vertical clearance space. Fully loaded, there is some resistance and not as smooth and drawer slides would be, but the UHMW is really slick and the drawers are not hard to pull out. The nice thing about not having the top screwed down is that it allows me to lift up the front of the drawer when pulling so I can put slightly bigger stuff in there than would otherwise allow me to open and close drawer.
    Note, when making measurements for the height, use a level and find level ground!


    One final pic, I got my steps attached today. The wife and kids will be happy.


    - Maker
    Last edited by makemuchoftime; 02-01-2018 at 08:51 PM.

  3. #13
    Join Date
    May 2014
    United States
    Wow! That is a very impressive and well-thought-out system. Thanks for sharing the pics. I used some similar UMHW strips for my homemade bedslide, they do the job just fine and keep everything simple and easily removable.

  4. #14
    Join Date
    May 2016
    Riverside CA USA
    Nice looking Av - and welcome. As for the ARB fridge: 1) Use the ARB wiring harness; 2) Cut off any excess wiring that you don't need - it is extremely sensitive to resistance.
    2002 Chevy Avalanche 1500 4x4 North Face Edition: Cut, drilled, trimmed, strengthened, beefed, wired, and sooped. A lot done, but more to do as I learn. Capability, Reliability, Survivability Recoverability.

  5. #15
    Join Date
    May 2016
    Riverside CA USA
    Quote Originally Posted by lunchwagon View Post
    You have a good looking 2500 there. I'm curious about your sleeping platform. I have an Avalanche too and always just drop the mid-gate if I'm going to sleep in the back. When the mid-gate is dropped it does leave a slight angle where it lays down on top of the seat backs. It's never bothered me much, but a truly flat surface would be better. Any pics of your setup in "sleep mode"?
    The best way to get a truly flat surface in the bed of an Av is to use the Napier tent made for the Av - in which you drop the tail gate and sleep from the midgate (head) and over the tail gate (feet). Otherwise - you get that slow slide during the night........If you're looking for a Napier tent I have one that I need to get rid of (just haven't got around to it). The Napier allows you to either keep the bed sealed off - or you can unzip it at the midgate and have the cab of your truck open to you.
    2002 Chevy Avalanche 1500 4x4 North Face Edition: Cut, drilled, trimmed, strengthened, beefed, wired, and sooped. A lot done, but more to do as I learn. Capability, Reliability, Survivability Recoverability.

  6. #16
    Join Date
    May 2016
    Riverside CA USA
    How thick are the rods on a 2500? If they are the standard GM 1/2" - swapping those should be way up on the priority list. I'm curious with the 8.1 - what kind of MPG do you get with that?
    2002 Chevy Avalanche 1500 4x4 North Face Edition: Cut, drilled, trimmed, strengthened, beefed, wired, and sooped. A lot done, but more to do as I learn. Capability, Reliability, Survivability Recoverability.

  7. #17
    Join Date
    Sep 2017
    PA, USA
    Makemuch, nice setup. How long is your sleeping platform? And, how long could it be? (I'm not real familiar with all the configurations of the Avalanche).

  8. #18

    Default Progress - slowly but surely

    Hi All,

    I've made some progress. I've updated the wiring and electrical I want to do… I'll cross-post this over on the Power Systems forum and ask my electrical questions there. I've also done some shopping.




    I also added access to the saddlebag storage areas. On the Avalanche there are two storage areas accessed through a hatch on the top of the bed rails. The SnugTop however sits on those so it closes them off. I cut through the inside bed of the truck and put in hatches so I could once again use those areas. The driver's side will be for storage, and the passenger side will be where I put the power panel.


    I'll put more details of this particular mod on the Chevy Avalanche Fan Club page as it's really specific to the Avy. (maker2280)

    Next step is to put the power panel together and run the wire from the aux battery. I will be using 1/0 wire inside 1/2" flexible non metallic conduit. I am running both positive and negative to the aux battery. The cable came as a set at a good price so I went with it.

    Your thoughts and suggestions are always appreciated.

    Regarding previous questions..
    Stryder106 - MPH about 10 - 12 mph is my guestimate. I'll track mileage and fill-ups on my next road trip. Not sure on the rods, I'll measure when I'm under there running the electrical.
    freedrive - sleeping platform is about 7'. When put together it measures from close to the back of the front seats, though not touching to about 4" from the closed tailgate. When everything is down, I have hauled 8' x 4' sheets of plywood in there while being able to keep the tailgate up, so there is plenty of room.


  9. #19
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Los Angeles
    Great solution / idea for the power panel location. I would further suggest designing the panel so all the ports are under covers / doors. Maybe even shaped so the doors will close even with things plugged into the ports. The idea being to shield the ports from gettign beat on by stored gear. But then again your fridge location ought to provide some protection anyway.

    I considered recessing the ports on my power box but ultimately wen against it as the panel faces right at the Liftgate and on the front end, close to the back of the third row seats (when installed)
    My '02 Sub Build / Collection Topic
    Vortec and GMT800 Mechanical Stuff
    Silnylon vehicle awning design - Mk1 DONE
    Some of my Woodworking
    '85 C-10, '05 k1500 Tahoe Z71, '02 k1500 Suburban Z71

  10. #20
    Rayra, one Anderson connection will be in the side wall of the bed for the ARB. Everything else will be inside/inset in the storage area that has the hatch cover, so I can cover everything up when in motion. Most of the outlets came with individual covers which I'll leave on for now... I'm also thinking of mounting an Anderson and 12v round outside the back somewhere so I can plug stuff in while keeping everything closed up... but that will be a future thing. I'm not yet quite sure how I'm going to attach the panel in there so it will be solid but also easily removable. this is where I just start putting stuff together with trial and error. I'll post pics when I get it figured out.

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