Eco-Roamer - F650 based Expedition Vehicle

RoosterBooster

Observer
Phew, have spent all morning and half of the afternoon reading about this project (well, I skimmed through the jealous accusatory posts). Fantastic project, well done, you've gotten me inspired. I'm still a corporate slave but I have plans, and now I also have a ton of inspiration. THANKS!!!
dito ^^^
very inspiring !!!
Jay: thank you for taking the time and post/explain so many details about your rig ... i highly appreciate it ;)


i would like to bring the discussion back to the rear suspension failure; (note: this is strictly technical and is NOT intended as any kind of "i know better" or "you should have" post... just trying to learn and may add a theory and possible explanation to the rear suspension failure that may could safe myself as well as others from a similar failure)

first off, big truck air suspension is not new to me (i already turned a IH 4900 MDT , Peterbuilt 387 and Peterbilt 379 into rv conversion and right now i`m in the planing stage to build a new MDT mild expo rig)
i noticed that it looks like the air leaf suspension failed right at the bolt hole (that locates the axle)

.... my theory is material fatigue due to the air leaf design; the design does not allow a lot of axle articulation (its basically a fixed two link)
it creates leaf twist when forced to articulate what could lead to material fatigue.
when i did research off-road capable suspension designs for my new rig i noticed that (BigRig) suspension designs are actually rated for percentage of off-road.

may take a look at this link to SAF/Holland/Neway "AD series" suspension;
http://ww1.safholland.us/sites/usa/en-US/products/truckandbussuspensions/Pages/NEWAY%20AD%20Series%20Truck%20and%20Tractor.aspx

Quote; "Approved for 100% off-highway application"
it looks like all the articulation twist is absorbed by rubber bushings... and no stress to the (very beefy) trailing arm at all.
i`m thinking to build a similar design for my truck based rig...

i would be very interested in what others think about my theory ;)
 
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chilliwak

Expedition Leader
Welcome back to the forum in so many ways Jay! As I drive a vehicle with a large camper/canopy on the back I would defiantly suggest the addition of a large rear sway bar. I have just added one to my truck and the improvement is immense!:Wow1: I also added a pair of Bilsein 5150s, and cant tell you how much that has helped too. Keep on trucking and keeps those pics coming.... We all love them, and the negative people are just jealous....:ylsmoke:
 

dzzz

may take a look at this link to SAF/Holland/Neway "AD series" suspension;
http://ww1.safholland.us/sites/usa/en-US/products/truckandbussuspensions/Pages/NEWAY AD Series Truck and Tractor.aspx

Quote; "Approved for 100% off-highway application"
it looks like all the articulation twist is absorbed by rubber bushings... and no stress to the (very beefy) trailing arm at all.
i`m thinking to build a similar design for my truck based rig...

i would be very interested in what others think about my theory ;)
That's a great find, but I wonder if even the lightest unit is too stiff for even a big camper. A concrete truck is class 7 or 8. That's well beyond the rating/frame of an F650. It probably would handle the rocking torque well on a tall heavy camper like Jay's. But it might not flex much in typical up/down suspension travel.
 

shachagra

Adventurer
Great Job

We have built a similar vehicle, and have just finished a year tour through Europe and Turkey in it- we have 3 children. You can search youtube for "shachagra"
Now the fun begins. We are right now moving out of Shachagra and back into our house.
 

jayshapiro

Adventurer
Hi All,
Yet another LOOOOOONG silence, sorry!

It's been a crazy busy, but exciting year.

The EcoRoamer is fixed and running great. We took it out to BurningMan again in September, which was amazing, but other than that it's been sitting in storage. No travel plans for 2011 as we've been really focused on our work for The Muskoka Foundation (now over 150 volunteer overlanders!) and my new startup Infinite Monkeys, which is launching December 1st.

This morning I have the crew for the Travel Channel's show: "DIY RV's" coming to interview me about the EcoRoamer. As soon as I have some footage from them, I'll definitely post it up here.

Our plan is to start heading towards South America starting in early 2012. Stay tuned!

Sorry again for the silence, there just isn't that much to report...

All the best,
Jay.

PS - Since I can't leave you with out at least ONE new picture, here's the truck on the playa in Nevada after Burning Man...



I posted that one and others on my Google+ stream, here.
 

TomH

Adventurer
Jay, so great to hear from you again!

Would still like to know whether dripping gray water (including liquid human waste) onto the exhaust has induced any oxidation/corrosion, and if there are odors/other problems.
 

bobDog

Expedition Leader
Would still like to know whether dripping gray water (including liquid human waste) onto the exhaust has induced any oxidation/corrosion, and if there are odors/other problems.
Man there is a great story just waiting to be told.....
:snorkel:
 

jayshapiro

Adventurer
Smelly oxidation

Hi Tom,
It's kind of funny. The truck took 2 years to design, and another 2 years to assemble the 1,000+ components together, but people seem to be most interested in the composting toilet and the grey water drain!

Yes - it smells bad. We treat it every once in a while and rinse the tanks, but I won't lie to you. If we're parked stationary and you are standing within 3 ft of the drain, it smells a little.

As for corrosion, I haven't seen any. My assumption was that the exhaust pipe was made of stainless steel, and that's why, but I may be way off on that.

Cheers,
Jay.
 

JumpJ

Adventurer
Amazing Truck!

You are an inspiration to those of us who have trouble even tightening a bolt. I never get bored or reading this thread about your trials etc. I could never imagine to build such a vehcile. As for your new business - sounds great and Good Luck from a fellow entreprenuer
Best of Luck!
Will
 

JRhetts

Adventurer
Spur;870968A while back you made a comment about having troubles with your espar hydronic. Would you mind elaborating on that? It's been on my wishlist said:
I can't speak for Jay [and sorry my reply is so delayed] but I have used the Espar Hydronic for 8 years and well over 100,000 miles on 3 vehicles. It has been very reliable. Used it for hot water only on the first 2 rigs, and for house heat and hot water as low as -11°F when we lived in our rig full time for 8 months. Very reliable. Wouldnt choose anything else, based on what I know of!!!
 

JRhetts

Adventurer
Jay,

It's good to have you and the family back. You are a first class gentleman. It's too bad that so many people do not know how to express differing points of view without being downright unkind and rude. You set an outstanding example in many facets of life. Best Wishes and hope you and the family will soon be full time on the road again.

Tom
I absolutely second that!!
 

jayshapiro

Adventurer
EcoRoamer on TV TONIGHT!

EXCITING NEWS!

The EcoRoamer (and us!) are going to be on TV tonight at 9pm on Discovery's Travel Channel. They interviewed us for their special: "Killer RV Upgrades".

It turned out really well, and if you want a sneak peak, you can watch it online, here:

http://www.travelchannel.com/video/the-ecoroamer

Enjoy!
Jay + Alice + Kurt + Maya Papaya
 
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