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Old 07-04-2009, 09:47 AM   #1
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Hi! We bought our Sportsmobile, Ford 350 T-diesel, 2 years ago and have had a few adventures. But having just modified the bed (really comfy now!) we are ready to get seriously off the road. We are looking to meet up with fellow aficionados anywhere in North Eastern Washington through Montana.
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'06 RB E350 6.0L TD, Quigley 4x4, PH, custom interior, KVH Satellite TV, Receiver mounted winch (F & B), Extreme Air, Amsoil filter system, Propane, Xantrex true charge 2 & Xantrex Batt monitor, 285 75R16.
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Old 07-04-2009, 02:34 PM   #2
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Re: New Members-WA

Welcome! If you are ever headed toward north-WEST WA, let us know! It never gets very hot here, and there's all that salt water...

What floor-plan do you have, and how did you improve the bed?
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1993 E350 SMB, 15M, 84k miles - a cheap date
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Old 07-05-2009, 09:00 AM   #3
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Thank you for the welcome! Our bed modification was a re upholstery trick that we learned on our boat (cruising the 7seas). We rebuilt the foam stack in our dinette cushions putting a soft layer on the bottom and a thinner, HD layer on top. We selected a slightly looser weave of fabric (to allow more give in the cushion). And finally my husband carved out 6 inches on the side walls to give me more leg room in the bed (I am 5'10). The mods are magnificent! We both get a great sleep now. Our bed is the dinette unfolded across the back of the van (almost queen size). I forget what that floor plan is called.

We'd love to come seaward again! And we have lots of fun ideas for traveling in our area too. Priest Lake is one the great gems of the West.
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Old 07-05-2009, 09:24 AM   #4
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Re: New Members-WA

Welcome! There are a few great forum members that reside in NW. You guys should call a meet & Greet soon.

Ray
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Old 07-05-2009, 09:40 AM   #5
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Re: New Members-WA

Thanks Ray! We'd love a meet and greet! I have been trying to get one happening in Oct (see Meetings) and I am trying to figure out how to contribute to the WA page (where does one find it?). I guess you'd just have to call us 'gung ho'.--Alanna
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Old 07-05-2009, 02:21 PM   #6
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Re: New Members-WA

Thanks for the bed info. Our rig is similar and I have the same problem - not enough leg room when the dinette couches become a bed. What/how did you guys cut stuff out in order to increase the length from side to side of the van?
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1993 E350 SMB, 15M, 84k miles - a cheap date
2006 Toyota Prius because we like clean air
2002 Honda Odyssey - can haul lots of stuff
1972 Mercedes 350SL with 4.5l V-8, just because
Wag more, Bark less, Play well with others.
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Old 07-05-2009, 04:55 PM   #7
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Re: New Members-WA

I cut out an area in the inner paneling the width of the bed and high enough to give us room to move our feet and heads without hitting the edges. Behind the paneling there is an internal steel structure that is not connected to the outer van skin. On the foot end of the bed, I cut out all of this structure within the cavity area using an air chisel (cutting wheels make too much mess and there is not enough room to get any kind of saw in there). Be careful when using a chisel, if you slip, you can dent or hole the van's skin. On the head end, I didn't remove the steel, but covered it over with 1/4" plywood backed with foam.

I then framed out the openings with wood and glued soft rubber floor tiles (the kind that interlock) to the inside of the outer skin on the foot end. If you make the cut-out a little deeper than the bed cushion height (2" in our case), you can add a piece of foam along the bottom for your head and heels. I used foam from the old cushions and found that they can be cut quite well with a table saw if you don't have a band saw.

Best of luck, Sandy

Attached Thumbnails
Bed cutout - 800x600.JPG  
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Old 07-05-2009, 07:06 PM   #8
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Re: New Members-WA

Wow, Sandy, what a beautiful job and great picture! !! I'll be interested to see if our rig has as much space between the "paneling" and the metal van side. This problem did inspire us to design (my spouse) and build (me) a quick-takedown extension platform for the passenger side, spin-around front bucket seat. With a good memory foam mattress on top, it makes a decent extra bed for someone like my spouse, who is 5' 2".
Thanks again - Brad
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1993 E350 SMB, 15M, 84k miles - a cheap date
2006 Toyota Prius because we like clean air
2002 Honda Odyssey - can haul lots of stuff
1972 Mercedes 350SL with 4.5l V-8, just because
Wag more, Bark less, Play well with others.
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