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Thread: 30forthirty - From Alaska to Argentina

  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Seward, AK
    Posts
    18

    Default 30forthirty - From Alaska to Argentina

    We are a bit belated getting up on expedition portal since we are 3 months into our trip, but better late then never!
    Who are we? Just a duo of 30 year olds addicted to adventure, fun, good people, and seeing the world.
    IMG_5111.jpg

    After a slight quarter-life crisis as we both turned 30, we left our home in Seward, Alaska bound for Tierra del Fuego, with the goal to drive 30,000 miles.
    We are driving our 2000 Ford Ranger with Suzie our 1988 popup Skamper camper on the back.
    IMG_4877.jpg
    So far in 3 months we've made it through 3 countries (Canada, USA, Mexico) and are currently parked in Belize doing some maintenance and catching up on computer stuff.

    Catch up on the last 3 months and follow our upcoming adventures on our blog 30forthirty.org and on our facebook page http://www.facebook.com/30ForThirty
    Last edited by akmtgirl; 12-10-2012 at 05:45 PM. Reason: image not showing up

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Seward, AK
    Posts
    18

    Default Skamper and Ranger Prep

    For those interested in what we did to prepare the vehicle and camper for the trip here is our blog post about prepping and a few pictures of the Skamper.


    After months of internet research, Craigslist scouring, and pipe dreams of pimped out Volkswagen Westfalias and Landcruisers, we found the perfect overlanding vehicle right in our driveway; Ken's Ford Ranger. Not only did it have 4 wheel drive and has been mostly meticulously maintained by Ken, we also stumbled on a rare Skamper pop up camper in Seward and sweet talked the owners into selling.

    As anyone knows who has researched or has any knowledge of pop up truck campers, finding an affordable, light, durable camper to fit on the back of a Ford Ranger is extremely difficult. We did not have the budget to spend $10,000 + on a new pop up with all the bells and whistles, so our affordable 1988 Skamper has and continues to need quite a few modifications.

    It turns out, after being outside during a record snow year coupled with a few tiny pinholes in the roof equals 200 lbs of wet, rotten plywood and insulation. Ken and a few friends tore everything out, replaced the insulation and plywood, and expoxied the crap out of all the seams and holes.
    IMG_4454.jpg

    IMG_4456.jpg

    Ken acquired and mounted a solar panel and is rewiring and installing new LED lights and an oscillating ceiling fan as well as replumbing the leaky hand pump faucet in the sink. Actually he is doing a lion's share of the modifications to the camper and the truck including a long list of upgrades to the Ranger.
    IMG_5006.jpg

    In an effort to update the dated 80's interior which included faded tropical floral curtains, faux wood paneling and dusty rose pink upholstery, I tried my hand at craftiness. I guess I am going to have to stick to cooking, nursing, reading, and drinking beer because I failed miserably at being crafty. I managed to successfully coat the stove cover with flammable paint and unsuccessfully dye the cushion covers, albeit they are now very clean. Despite my best efforts and because of Ken's, Suzie Skamper will be the lean, mean driving machine she was supposed to be.
    IMG_5004.jpg

    Here's a list of all the modifications to the truck and camper.

    Camper:

    Removed water saturated ceiling and replaced with foam board and plywood.
    Sealed all seams with 3M 5200
    2◊4′s on roof to mount 40W solar panel and roof rack
    Roof rack fabricated out of 3/4″ pipe
    Deep cycle battery for camper
    Solar charge controller and battery isolator in order to for the alternator from the truck to charge both batteries
    400W AC/DC inverter with USB port
    New fuse panel and complete rewiring
    Installed 3x 3W LED lighting in the camper, 6W flood light outside
    12 volt fan over bed
    Installed fans (actually old computer fans) in the vent over the stove
    Dead bolt and new door knob on camper door
    Removed the pain in the hole screen door
    New water pump and faucet
    Everpure Charcoal filtration system for water purification
    New propane regulator, hose, and thermocoupler for the heater
    Custom awning conceived and created by Ken Inc.
    Reinforced rear side doors and master locks to side doors and propane door
    New curtains thanks to our fabulous friend Krista

    Attachment 135123
    Truck:

    BF Goodrich All Terrain LT 245/75/R16 E (Kenís pride and joy, I think he has Armor Allíd them at least 2 times in the past week)
    Firestone Sport-Rite air springs
    Shocks
    Alignment
    Towing mirrors
    Hidden kill switch
    Radio with auxillary and USB input
    Locking gas cap
    Ball hitch converted to step
    Custom shelf in extended cab

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2011
    Location
    Chattanooga, Tn.
    Posts
    273
    Took a quick look at your website. Wonderful trip you guys are doing. I'll be watching it and thanks for putting the time in to write about it.

    I'm thirty as well, and, now, I admit that I'm jealous of the great trip. -jesse

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    Location
    Dartmouth, MA
    Posts
    347
    Great BLOG and some nice photo work there.........I'll be on my way following your tracks in 18 months!
    RoyB
    Dartmouth, MA
    2006 Ram 2500 4X4 Diesel
    Palomino B1200 Truck Camper
    2007 BMW K1200 Sport
    2007 Suzuki V Strom

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
    Location
    ATX
    Posts
    165
    March 15th we'll be right behind you!

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Location
    Mass
    Posts
    147
    Awesome guys. I have a 05 ranger and havebeen looking for 2 years and havent found mine yet came close a few times ,but alot of work and too much money and not the size I want. Good luck and keep posting is your a 6' scamper almost had one that sizwe but guy kept playing games. Happy Camping

  7. #7
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Seward, AK
    Posts
    18
    Our skamper is a 6ft but was in very bad shape when we got it. But the price was right and it was in alaska.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Location
    Mass
    Posts
    147
    Thanks ya i want a newer one also but out of my budget now. Someday i will be enjoying this wonderfull country .Soon as my truck is paid off i will be looking to spend a little more for one and hopefully find the size lie yours . If you dont mind how much was your and any more pic of camper on outside and inside would be great thanks again. Good luck and safe travels

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Location
    Kalispell, MT
    Posts
    17
    Fantastic trip, love the blog! Anaka....was/is your mom a teacher?

  10. #10
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Seward, AK
    Posts
    18
    Thanks! She is still a teacher in Kalispell. Guessing this is a small world kind of thing?

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