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 Post subject: Transport van ideas
PostPosted: December 24, 2019, 5:13 pm 
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Okay, I started a thread along these lines during the forum restoration process and as expected it was lost. Now that I have the better part of a viable plan put together, I thought I would post again and see what kind of feedback I can get.

First of all, I would like to list the criteria that led me to this point, so everyone can understand why I am looking at this in the first place. I wanted a good way to haul my car around, that doesn't take up a lot of space, is fully enclosed (secure), and, locost. I am currently parking my trailer in my back yard and daily driving an SUV. If I had a dedicated transport van, I could get rid of the SUV and trailer, and replace with a car for daily driving. The van would be parked in the back and I would like it to be as inconspicuous as possible.

So with that out of the way, what I am considering now is building something like a custom cube van. Either by buying a cube van and scrapping the cube, or, preferably, buying a cutaway chassis/cab. The benefits to building a custom box are that I can put a beavertail on it and I can keep the roof of the box much lower than any standard cube van, which will help with highway fuel economy and staying out of sight when parked.

Attached below is an example of a van for sale locally. Ideally I would like one with lower mileage, but at least the price is attractive (it's in CAD$).

Also attached are two options for a box. The truck depicted is a GMC Savana with the 159" WB. In both cases the floor would be flat, but with ramps for the car to sit on (to reduce the breakover angle and shorten the ramps extending out for unloading). In the second case, I lowered the box and allowed the inner fender to protrude slightly inward. I don't think it would be a problem for the car to make it over those humps, especially given that the intent is to winch it in and out.

Anyway, that's what I have so far. I would appreciate any input!


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box option 1.PNG
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box option 2.PNG
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 Post subject: Re: Transport van ideas
PostPosted: December 25, 2019, 8:51 am 
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If you drive rather than reverse on-board the 'cube' could be level with the cab top for even better aero. Allowing the wheel wells to intrude a bit is no problem especially if you camber the the tracks over the wheel wells rather than leaving the wheel wells as 'pimples'.

Would the cube have to be wider than the cab? If not, starting from a full-body van might even work, although the surgery required could be poor use of your time.

Is half a million klicks (or was it miles) too much for a truck Diesel? I've done long trips in a couple of half-million kilometer VW Diesels.

A good thought exercise for Christmas morning!

(Edit: You would be better off without duallies if single rear tires will carry the load. If you are travelling the US toll routes (around Chicago for example) single axle/dual rear tires attract the same toll rate as two rear axles. Not a huge issue, but it's a 50% toll increase and easy to address at the design stage. And getting an EZ-Pass generates a 50% toll discount over cash on all mid-west and Eastern toll routes. The only EZ-Pass source I know of that recognizes Canadian customers is NY State Thruway Authority. They have an on-line order process. I think Western US toll routes use a different transponder technology.)

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 Post subject: Re: Transport van ideas
PostPosted: December 25, 2019, 12:55 pm 
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Hmm, those are all good points to consider. Thanks Warren. I agree that single rear wheels would be ideal, though I'm not sure how common SRW cutaway vans are.

Good point on driving it in forward, too. I like that, and for the width I think I would just go as wide as the wheels so they are fully covered. I would also plan to make one or both side panels flip up for easy access to the front wheels when strapping it down.

About the mileage, I guess it's a little over 300,000 miles. Seems those diesels are pretty well built and will easily do more, as long as the rest of the chassis holds up!


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 Post subject: Re: Transport van ideas
PostPosted: December 25, 2019, 2:57 pm 
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We were looking at a different but similar solution for my brother's racing Mini. We wanted something that looked like an old school (1960's) British solution. So far we haven't done anything with the idea.


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 Post subject: Re: Transport van ideas
PostPosted: December 25, 2019, 5:42 pm 
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BHRmotorsport wrote:
We were looking at a different but similar solution for my brother's racing Mini. We wanted something that looked like an old school (1960's) British solution. So far we haven't done anything with the idea.


Now THAT... Would be a really COOOL rig! :cheers:

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 Post subject: Re: Transport van ideas
PostPosted: December 26, 2019, 9:02 am 
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You may be able to run just the outer rims so there would be no need for a hump.

Also consider the insurance requirements for non-commercial use of a commercial vehicle limit passengers to those on the policy and coverage and cost are based on a radius from your domicile.

I'd look at using a powerful full size fwd vehicle and back half it with a torsion axle trailer with a low deck, then box it in. I'm thinking cadillac or subbie awd, just don't use the rear pto. Inconspicuous? No.

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 Post subject: Re: Transport van ideas
PostPosted: December 26, 2019, 9:24 am 
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Following on MiataV8's theme, there are some RVs based on stretched FWD platforms. A way to avoid back-halfing?

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 Post subject: Re: Transport van ideas
PostPosted: December 26, 2019, 12:56 pm 
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Hmm, that's interesting. I definitely can't modify the frame of the vehicle though - that does not fly with insurance here. I could look into an RV and see what comes up.. I know the Ram promaster vans are FWD (and unfortunately a bit pricey, and slightly too narrow with the stock body).


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 Post subject: Re: Transport van ideas
PostPosted: December 26, 2019, 2:55 pm 
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Location: Cornholio OR "Where the magic happens"
My dream hauler is an Eldorado/Tornado power train under a COE (cab over engine) truck cab with low deck ramps and air suspension so the back of the truck kneels for easy loading and unloading.

There may be other powertrain options, a Turbo Diesel would be a great alternative.

The FWD aspect allows the ramps to be between the rear wheels and drop to the ground.

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 Post subject: Re: Transport van ideas
PostPosted: December 28, 2019, 12:36 pm 
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Someone may have posted this in another thread here on LocostUSA. I know I've seen it somewhere. Maybe Grassroots Motorsports?
Attachment:
File comment: Copied from Pinterist.com
Mini Van Car Hauler #1.jpg
Mini Van Car Hauler #1.jpg [ 116.44 KiB | Viewed 428 times ]

Attachment:
File comment: Ditto - Pinterist
Mini Van Car Hauler #2.jpg
Mini Van Car Hauler #2.jpg [ 100.61 KiB | Viewed 428 times ]

Cheers,

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Damn! That front slip angle is way too large and the Ackerman is just a muddle.

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 Post subject: Re: Transport van ideas
PostPosted: January 22, 2020, 12:18 am 
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Looking at those examples I think a retired school bus might make for a great transporter. It’s already got a decent body and the major modification are ramps and a back door.


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 Post subject: Re: Transport van ideas
PostPosted: January 22, 2020, 3:38 am 
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JimV8 wrote:
Looking at those examples I think a retired school bus might make for a great transporter. It’s already got a decent body and the major modification are ramps and a back door.


Something like this?


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buscarhaulerCapture.PNG
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 Post subject: Re: Transport van ideas
PostPosted: January 22, 2020, 2:34 pm 
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Location: Cornholio OR "Where the magic happens"
The problem with a bus or cube truck/van type donor is the rear axle.
This means a high center of gravity and long ramps and a steep incline.
Not a biggie for a Locost as they are light.
But you still have the long ramps and a clutch burning incline.

Note: The FWD setup does not have to be open. easy to enclose.
Then it would not have to kneel, it could have a back door/ramp.

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 Post subject: Re: Transport van ideas
PostPosted: January 22, 2020, 3:58 pm 
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You’ll want to winch the car up in any case. A reason I like the bus is because of the inclined ramps as that frees up a bunch of space under the front of the car in the bus.


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 Post subject: Re: Transport van ideas
PostPosted: January 22, 2020, 8:54 pm 
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Well as is typical in this world, my plans have 'evolved' over time. My most recent iteration came to me while watching a dump truck do its thing.

This shows a cab and chassis frame with a custom (or customized) 12' flat deck. It pivots near the back, and inclines to 10 degrees. I determined the max comfortable breakover angle is about 5 degrees with my car, so if I get 10 degrees from the deck and 5 degrees between the deck and the ramps, I end up with pretty decent-looking geometry. I could actuate the deck with a reasonably affordable hydraulic pack.

The truck shown here is a Ford F550, which, yes, is massive overkill, but there's one at auction right now that I am hoping to have for a worthwhile price. Plus, with the deck completely flat during normal operation, I could use it for many other things (That's how I justified it to my wife)!


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