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Old 08-13-2017, 09:37 AM   #441
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Mouse Exclusion Fence

Beached, I titled this just for you! Add "SMHM" in front of the title and you will understand.

I posted this picture in post #429, with the Sprinter air box serving as mouse habitat:



I cleaned out the nest and let the van sit (with a baited mouse trap sitting in the air inlet) for a week. The trap obstructed the passage and maybe that's why it remained empty, but its obvious that there was some activity going on as this material made its way to the top of the previously cleaned-off bumper:



If you haven't seen it, the air inlet is just to the right of the radiator and is easily accessed by pulling off the front grille:



And here is how mine looks now, with my new "mouse exclusion fence" in place.



Pretty simple fix, should do the trick. Hopefully the little critters will not choose to take up residency elsewhere onboard, I guess the best detriment to that will be to keep Flint out on the road! I will be paying close attention, but the one question I have is this: Why am I providing room and board for the various cats we have hanging around here? I'll have to have a serious discussion with them about their job duties!!!
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Old 08-19-2017, 12:49 AM   #442
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Fitz, thanks for info on public scales and your van weights. I since googled WA State DOL, several places listed to get accurate front and rear axle weights.

I decided on the Van Compass suspension system as you did. That will be post-conversion at either Van Compass in Idaho or Trail Tested Mfg.
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Old 08-19-2017, 03:51 AM   #443
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I since googled WA State DOL, several places listed to get accurate front and rear axle weights.
Can you send me a link. Would be helpful as we're moving to VC, WA. Thx.
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Old 08-20-2017, 09:20 AM   #444
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Can you send me a link. Would be helpful as we're moving to VC, WA. Thx.
TomH,

Just look for a CAT Scale near you.
https://catscale.com/cat-scale-locator/
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Old 08-22-2017, 07:53 AM   #445
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Is the XL storage you did something specific to SMB Texas or is it SMB wide? I'm wondering with those dimensions if it would make a good lithium battery storage. Also wondering how much, if any, it impacted your ground clearance.

Wrinkledpants is finding that the lithium set-up with SMB Fresno is limited, which will require us to do a re-work on delivery. I'm thinking of where I might be able to put the battery. Your XL storage location is the perfect size with room for wiring, external BMS, etc.
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Old 08-22-2017, 05:05 PM   #446
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The XL storage is a SMB option, from what I can tell Austin and Fresno use different sizes, see my build thread for those details.

Weight and ground clearance are two issues, relatively easily solved in my opinion, as is designing the build to allow for access through the rear hatch.

Look in my build thread for the details of the skid plate that Rob at Van Compass made for me. I believe you would want something like this for protection and for added support from below to support the weight of the batteries. Now if you could get Mark and Rob at Van Compass interested...
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Old 08-22-2017, 06:23 PM   #447
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Now if you could get Mark and Rob at Van Compass interested...
BCG, that's a very good idea for you and me since they're now between Spokane and Coeur d'Alene.

Fitz' build thread has pics of that extra deep storage box after it bottomed out. He then had VC put a skid plate over it. Fitz, how much impact has the skid plate taken since they installed it and how's it holding up? I once went through a water puddle at Tahoe which turned out to be very deep with a sharp pointed rock protruding straight up in the middle of it. The oil pan impaled right on top of it so badly that it irreparably damaged the diesel engine in the truck. I am interested in this possibility, but am also a little nervous putting $10k or more of batteries there.
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Old 08-23-2017, 01:58 AM   #448
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I agree, I'm back to making room in the drivers side dinette settee for the increased size battery, especially since it will most likely be right next to the invertor and that is where Sportmobile will most likely put the battery box with the smaller lithium in it.
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Old 08-23-2017, 11:38 AM   #449
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Fitz' build thread has pics of that extra deep storage box after it bottomed out. He then had VC put a skid plate over it. Fitz, how much impact has the skid plate taken since they installed it and how's it holding up?
Very happy with the rear skid plate protecting the XL storage. We drug it across several rocks when we went to Coyote Flat and it did its job well. I think this is a viable option to explore for battery storage.
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Old 08-28-2017, 07:40 AM   #450
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Smile The OTHER use for an Aluminess Front Winch Bumper

I've recently seen several posts about Sprinter front bumpers and winch options.

Having lived with Flint for just under a year and just over 17k miles, there is one thing I have done a lot of - washing the windshield! This is something that gets done a lot, at least at every fill-up and often between fill-ups. These big tall vehicles attract bugs and this is something we all need to deal with.

Don't discount this! In its stock configuration, the Sprinter has a nice little step built into the factory bumper at the center (this also serves to funnel air to the engine).

Add taller tires and replace the bumper (or add a winch via a front mount) and you have changed the equation. For me, the often-done day-in-and-day-out task of washing the windshield means climbing up on the front tires to perform this task.

Here is a little-known fact regarding the Aluminess font bumper with the Brush Guard: It provides a great platform for washing the front windshield and it provides FAR more service in this use than its intended purpose!

We just came back from a 2,500 mile trip. Notice the dirty spot on the front corner of the bumper?



Here's the sequence to get up to wash the windshield:





One foot on the tire, one foot on the corner of the bumper, the base of the mirror for one hand-hold and the top of the brush guard for the other, this is an often-repeated operation that is (or will-be, in the case of those of you contemplating a purchase) the reality of owning and driving one of these vehicles.

I thought I'd pass this on as one more thing to consider. I carry a long extendable brush/squeegee in the back for those times when things are really dirty, but the reality of getting the windshield clean is that you have to get up there with a squeegee and a towel to get all the streaks off. And those little steps that hang over the top of the tire? Too low, they put you at about the center of the tire when you need to get to the top of the tire to be able to get to the center of the windshield.

Getting out there and using the vehicle is one thing, being able to see well while doing it is another! Any other ideas/thoughts on how you do this?
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