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Old 11-26-2019, 06:35 PM   #1
Skoolie
 
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advice on creating sliding chuck box

I have a 99 e450 shuttle bus. I am making changes to my interior for the 3rd time.
What I have is a queen size bed in the back made of plywood, meaning plywood risers that create storage underneath. In use, the storage gets unused. Hold that thought.
I thought it would be very cool to have a tow hitch mounted chuck box, since I do cooking outside even in the bad weather. Hold that thought.

it would be great to combine these thoughts and Not use the tow hitch, but obviously needs to secure the box to the back of the bus.

I have a camp chef 3 burner stove and a traeger scout compact pellet smoker. Given that the bed is 5' wide, I could with the right sliders build a plywood drawer that will slide out 3' in the back, allowing for 2' storage on the interior.

In a perfect world, I could save the exterior fiberglass transom of the bus that would can be hinged open exposing the drawers. I can mount the pellet smoker (little bit bigger than a lunch box) and possibly a lid that allows me to open and hang cooking tools.

I suspect that i will have to cut out the aft end for the drawers and build a frame to hinge the fiberglass exterior piece, but will have to figure a way to weather strip so that stationary or in transit will not leak.

As you can see I have thought this out, but I find in life, others have delt with these challenges and found solutions that I have not? So, am asking for your input how you would do this that results in storage drawers opening in the rear? Likely on drawer will be for cooking and another for battery storage and tools, access to power and another for storage.
goals in no particular order, stealth (looks normal from exterior)
long slide for custom drawer out of sheet metal or likely plywood.
one drawer dedicated to cooking
does not interfere with towing so is installed all the time.
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Old 11-26-2019, 06:40 PM   #2
Skoolie
 
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use existing storage

This project addresses that in practical use, age and injuries I am not going to get on my knees to get out storage under the bed except for the first couple of feet. I have had this pus for about 7 yrs.
When I lived in the bus, I cook outside due to the smoke, grease and mess is outside and doesn't create food scraps for rodents inside the bus.
So thought a chuck box on the back of the bus like a chuck wagon would be a solution. The problem is where to put the stove and little bbq. So these could be built into a drawer or stored there. Giving you background here.
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Old 11-26-2019, 06:55 PM   #3
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My first thoughts a little expensive -- metal work truck draws/slide outs.
I'd get a diamond plate one and show it off rather than try to stealth it.
The metal will contain all cooking heat and messy mishaps...

Here's a million pix...
https://www.google.com/search?q=truc...ih=625#imgrc=_
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Old 11-26-2019, 07:56 PM   #4
Skoolie
 
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I retired as a graduate apprentice steel fabricator with 3 decades of experience, my wife was a graduate apprentice sheet metal jouneyman. So working with steel is no problem, but plywood is cheap, but the slides are not. I can build to spec, but all ideas are helpful
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Old 11-26-2019, 08:57 PM   #5
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I can't really offer advice, but I love this project. If you've got the skills to pull it off I think it would be a pretty awesome use of otherwise wasted space. I just put some 500lb slides in my luggage bin and now I can pull out my toolbox and all of my power tools, fasteners and general garage stuff. Good full extension, heavy duty slides make it pretty simple.

I've seen some pretty nice sliding kitchens on van conversions, of course those have rear doors so it makes it a little simpler.
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Old 11-26-2019, 09:39 PM   #6
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If I’ve totally misunderstood, sorry. Are you keeping the back door or do you have a back door? While I was reading this a couple ideas came to mind. The first was a fold down work station with the stove mounted to it on the inside. The other was swing out tables on either side. This could work if there were a door in the middle.

I think you’ll find a lot of wiring in those walls so you’ll likely have to redo wiring harnesses.
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Old 11-26-2019, 09:57 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bluespoet View Post
I retired as a graduate apprentice steel fabricator with 3 decades of experience, my wife was a graduate apprentice sheet metal jouneyman. So working with steel is no problem, but plywood is cheap, but the slides are not. I can build to spec, but all ideas are helpful
I hear you. The blue or orange box stores have some decent slides for cabinets.
Grainger's probably has some nicer slides for making installation cabinets.

I would think a two foot drawer going into the living space for clothes outa wood, and a 3' metal drawer on slides coming out a door on the back would be pretty slick. Easier to make the metal drawer mouse tight for storage..

Couldmake your own slides outa C channel and 1" roller bearings...
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Old 11-26-2019, 11:36 PM   #8
Skoolie
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Danjo View Post
If Iíve totally misunderstood, sorry. Are you keeping the back door or do you have a back door? While I was reading this a couple ideas came to mind. The first was a fold down work station with the stove mounted to it on the inside. The other was swing out tables on either side. This could work if there were a door in the middle.

I think youíll find a lot of wiring in those walls so youíll likely have to redo wiring harnesses.
the transom of the bus is the very rear end, the license plate attaches to the transom for example. Am thinking about cutting in a door, building a frame so that the transom can be hinged up exposing the drawers and then latched when down so that the rear exterior of the bus looks like there is no door.
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