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Drool on these overlanders


armchair bushman

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armchair bushman

@Gray Nomad's post about his own build for his new overland 70 series LC got my interest. And now I can't stop looking for these things. It's difficult to concentrate on anything else, really.

 

Look at this: http://earthroamer.com/

And this!: http://www.offroad-schmiede.com

 

and there are so many more.

 

I want I want I want.

 

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I regularly stop by the forum at 4x4community.co.za and look at what those South Africans build. It's amazing. I want I want I want too.

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I am doing an overland build right now.

 

 

And will post some photos when its complete.

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Game Warden
I am doing an overland build right now.

 

Awesome: will you need a co-pilot when you drive from the Cape to Cairo? :)

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Some lessons learned from the past. I have been doing overlanding for many years. Started with a diesel series III landy with a roof top tent. At the time RTT's were pretty new inventions. Later went to a Defender also with RTT and then went for the trailer and the Jeep. Now doing away with the RTT and the trailer, and doing normal tent and making the vehicle carry everything we need.

 

A couple of things I have learned. Most people (including me) over rate the importance of 4x4 capability. In fact you don't need to have such a capable 4x4, and should rather get something that will give you comfort for hours on the road, and use less fuel. Most of the time you will be traveling on roads that other cars travel on, and there is nothing technical about overland driving. Also there is a tendency to pack everything on the roof, and make the car unstable and heavy on fuel.

 

So you wont need something like this....

gallery_4095_907_203417.jpg

 

You should be able to drive for 2000km without looking for fuel. I hate carrying Jerry cans, so all fuel is kept in tanks in the vehicle.

Easy access to everything. If you want a beer it should take less than 30 seconds. If you want pliers or screwdriver, coffee, sugar, toilet paper etc it should take 30 seconds. Nothing should be hidden behind or under something else. As little as possible on the roof.

 

Here is what I started with.

gallery_4095_907_38113.jpg

 

Then gave it a bit of a lift and some new tyres - not essential, but I have a fetish.

gallery_4095_907_135864.jpg

 

Then a new bumper with winch.

 

gallery_4095_907_84373.jpg

 

Then the aluminum canopy with access doors on the side and back.

 

gallery_4095_907_210289.jpg

 

Here are some photos showing all doors open.

 

gallery_4095_907_196756.jpg

gallery_4095_907_166142.jpg

 

What you dont see is the fact that the exhaust has been moved to the side to make way for a 60l fuel tank. Under belly protection still to come, and rear bumper with recovery points and hi-lift jack points. This is a shell. still to come is another fuel tank with another 70l capacity and a 60liter water tank as well as a drawer system. The kitchen will come out in one drawer and clothing will be on the other drawer. The whole setup provided for a large freezer, fridge, and cooler box. Solar panels and two extra batteries with inverter.

 

I will make another post when its complete.

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Game Warden

The laughing Zebra Safaritalk magnetic sign will fit nicely on those doors...

 

bugs6.jpg

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graynomad

@@armchair bushman, there are some fantastic campers around, but without fail they are really expensive. Think about starting at around $25k for a new slidon with no extras, then go up to $75k or more. And we're only talking about the camper, you still have to add a vehicle!

 

I was thinking about just buying something this time, after all I've built a lot of campers and motorhomes over the years and in many ways I'm a bit over it, but as always I look at the dollars and get the tools back out.

 

@, what will you be doing for power, there's room for a couple of solar panels on that roof.

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We did one trip with the trailer handling all the power for the fridge. There is a cable from the vehicle that will charge the battery, but when parked, the battery only lasts two days. We then moved the fridge to the Jeep, and used two batteries in the back of the jeep for the fridge. This worked pretty well, as long as you drive for an hour a day, the batteries keep charged. In fact last time in Mana pools, we still had ice-cream after a week. There are a number of power systems on the market, that include inverter and battery charger when the vehicle is running. C-tek come to mind. http://www.ctek.com/au/en or http://www.pbeproducts.co.za/

 

The thing about solar, is that you don't need it while driving, as you batteries are being charged when driving. You only need it when stationary. So it brings in the argument of whether you should get a portable one to set up at once you are camped.

 

There are two roof sections on this vehicle. One above the canopy, and one above the driver. I plan to have two roof racks. We have the ability to store one spare under the vehicle, but will need to take a spare tyre (not wheel) which may have top go on the roof. The awning needs a roof rack to be mounted to. And you need a place to carry firewood on occasion.

 

@@graynomad your vehicle is a camper, where you will sleep and live inside. It poses a whole different set of issues, although some space saving ideas can be stolen from the trailer/caravan manufacturers.

 

You are correct in considering buying something already done, and add you preferred mods to it. It has been very expensive experience so far for me, and I am only half way.

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graynomad

Yes you have to look at your lifestyle before deciding on a charging regime. If you drive every second day it's a lot different to driving every second week. We hardly ever drive, we camp for a month in one place, so having a feed from the alternator is of little use. If on the other hand you only camp for 2-3 days then drive for a day it's very useful to charge from the alternator.

 

We had a portable setup on our last Cruiser,

 

29282.jpg

 

2x 125W panels. It works well but gets a but tiresome putting them out if you do it too often.

 

 

It has been very expensive experience so far for me

I haven't started the new build yet but my budget is about $25k, plus I spent $14k for the Landcruiser.

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armchair bushman

All very nice. Looking forward to seeing more pictures and progress reports!

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