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Thread: Silverado Slide-in

  1. #1
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    Default Silverado Slide-in

    I just purchased a 2004 Chevy Silverado 1500 4x4 reg cab long bed. My former rigs have been Jeeps and Toyotas so I have decided that I am going to take advantage of the 8' bed that I have available now. I am going to build a slide-in camper and outfit the rest of the truck to be a little more capable. I plan on replacing the leaf springs and torsion bars with parts from a 2500HD. This should give me a couple inches of lift while beefing up the rear suspension for the slide-in. I will also add a 1"-2" body lift and go up in tire size to 315s.


    I will be installing a winch next week. It will be hidden behind the stock bumper. It fits perfectly between the frame rails and will be totally hidden from view. I wont be upgrading the bumpers because this is not intended to be a trail rig. Just a fairly capable camper.


    For the camper I will be building a slide-in with a pop-up top. It will not be an "over the cab style" because my bed is long enough to offer the space that I need. I will be using plywood/fiberglass construction. I chose this type of construction because I have experience with it and it is in my budget. I used to work for a composite surface company and I have looked at composite panels for construction but the cost is just too high for my budget. I have also looked at a sheet metal exterior but I would rather be able to repair the fiberglass than be stuck with a damaged metal side. Any and all input is welcome. Here are some Sketchup pics of the camper.

    Front


    Rear
    Last edited by jh504; 08-25-2009 at 10:28 PM.

  2. #2
    jh504

    what kind of interior design are you think about. i.e. bed layout, cooking, or bath.

    Breakinstuffzfun

  3. #3
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    I would also loose the black plastic front air dam. I took mine off a couple of years ago, and I noticed 0 difference in fuel economy or cooling or high speed handling.
    James Howard

    1968 Land Rover Dormobile
    1992 Range Rover, green with a white roof, the "Rangemobile"
    http://dormobile.blogspot.com

  4. #4
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    You don't need to beef up the rear springs to carry a popup, mine handels one just fine with the stock springs, I have a 8' camper on the 6.5' bed with the tailgate open.
    2004 Chevrolet Silverado ECSB z71
    1982 Palomino Bronco 186

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by breakinstuffzfun View Post
    jh504

    what kind of interior design are you think about. i.e. bed layout, cooking, or bath.

    Breakinstuffzfun
    I dont have anything drawn out yet but the way I am thinking is it will have a fold down bed on the front wall. The rear of the camper will have a sink, stove, and small fold down table. I will also put a small refrigerator in a cabinet under the table. The square you see by the door is an opening for an air conditioner. I havnt decided if I will try to incorporate a toilet into the camper or not. I will use an exterior canvas setup for the shower.
    The 4x8 floor can also be used as a sleeping area, so it will be able to sleep 4 adults.

    Its good to hear that the stock springs will handle the weight. I will still upgrade to the HD springs though as I'm sure I will be hard on them.

  6. #6
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    Wouldn't you want the softer springs for more flex? My thought was to put a larger block between the spring and axel, replacing the one thats there now to compensate for the inch drop from the camper weight.
    2004 Chevrolet Silverado ECSB z71
    1982 Palomino Bronco 186

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by eugene View Post
    Wouldn't you want the softer springs for more flex? My thought was to put a larger block between the spring and axel, replacing the one thats there now to compensate for the inch drop from the camper weight.
    Yes I hear you on the flex. That is the mind set I have always had with my trail rigs. I plan on loading this truck down though, and it wont be going on hardcore trails. Just fire roads and that sort of thing. It will be stiff when unloaded but I think loaded it will be fine.

  8. #8
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    Check this out! Looks like exactly what you are wanting to do.

    http://trustbreaker.freehostia.com/h...top_camper.htm
    Just because your'e paranoid, doesn't mean they're not out to get you!

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by chief5 View Post
    Check this out! Looks like exactly what you are wanting to do.

    http://trustbreaker.freehostia.com/h...top_camper.htm
    Nice, I havnt seen that one before. The popup is kind of the same idea I had in mind. Fold up hard sides instead of canvas.

    I am rethinking the shower idea now. A lot of this build is so my wife will be comfortable while in the backcountry and she would much rather have an indoor shower. Anyone have any experience with homemade showers inside their rigs?
    Last edited by jh504; 08-27-2009 at 08:37 PM.

  10. #10
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    Here are a couple of shots with a possible shower enclosure. The first is with the bed folded up, and the second is with the bed folded down.




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