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Old 05-29-2019, 12:00 AM   #1
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Has anyone removed the bottom step?

I really want ground clearance, everywhere really, including behind the right front wheel. When making the RV type entry door, has anyone removed the first step, so the bottom is even and level the full length?
I'm pondering how to make a folding or retractable atep?
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Old 05-29-2019, 09:12 AM   #2
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A friend of mine brought that up. I was just looking at how it’s constructed on my bus. Looks easy to just cut that much step off, but stair height uniformity is important for safety reasons, so that needs to be considered. You’d need to shorten the door or find a different one.

Here’s a retractable step.

https://www.etrailer.com/search/Rv+Electric+Step
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Old 05-29-2019, 09:30 AM   #3
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look underneath. On mine the step hangs low, but not lower than the oil pan which is about the same height as the rear pumpkin. which is about 17" off the ground.
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Old 05-29-2019, 09:46 AM   #4
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On my FE Thomas 3800, the very bottom step is the same height as the heavy cross member between the front rubber, also the bottom of the fender. The next step up is about the same elevation as my oil pan.
Figure any serious high spots encountered on a trail will be taken on a tire, if possible, to avoid the risk of center-punching my suspension or mill.
Ultimately, I plan to score an entire set of steps, hinge them at the back of the top tread, cut the existing stairs mostly out (leaving several inches on either side for support), and build a storage box in the currently wasted space.
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Old 05-29-2019, 11:28 AM   #5
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Originally Posted by JustKip View Post
I really want ground clearance, everywhere really, including behind the right front wheel. When making the RV type entry door, has anyone removed the first step, so the bottom is even and level the full length?
I'm pondering how to make a folding or retractable atep?
I would say drive it until your bottom step actually hits something, and then worry about cutting it off.
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Old 05-29-2019, 03:26 PM   #6
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I would say drive it until your bottom step actually hits something, and then worry about cutting it off.
...and modifying the brand new RV style door (yeah, assuming that's sometime in the near future, instead of never)
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Old 05-29-2019, 03:30 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by Danjo View Post
A friend of mine brought that up. I was just looking at how itís constructed on my bus. Looks easy to just cut that much step off, but stair height uniformity is important for safety reasons, so that needs to be considered. Youíd need to shorten the door or find a different one.

Hereís a retractable step.

https://www.etrailer.com/search/Rv+Electric+Step
Yeah, after posting this I was under my bus chasing wires and saw that it really isnít all that much. I think Iíd focus on everything else and come back to that at the end to see if itís still important.
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Old 05-29-2019, 03:31 PM   #8
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A friend of mine brought that up. I was just looking at how itís constructed on my bus. Looks easy to just cut that much step off, but stair height uniformity is important for safety reasons, so that needs to be considered. Youíd need to shorten the door or find a different one.

Hereís a retractable step.

https://www.etrailer.com/search/Rv+Electric+Step
Thanks for the link! Fabricating a new door anyway, so I want to do it at the same time.
As for safety reasons, I have a marginally functional left leg, and rely on grab rails for every step anyway. Other than me, it's every man for himself!
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Old 05-29-2019, 08:14 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by JustKip View Post
I really want ground clearance, everywhere really, including behind the right front wheel. When making the RV type entry door, has anyone removed the first step, so the bottom is even and level the full length?
I'm pondering how to make a folding or retractable atep?
I removed mine, for clearance considerations, and cut a new door on the driver's side.

The Armageddon build removed his, same reasons, and modified his existing door.
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Old 05-30-2019, 07:59 AM   #10
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What is the benefit of removing the door it came with and adding a different door?
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Old 05-30-2019, 10:34 AM   #11
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What is the benefit of removing the door it came with and adding a different door?
if the door is moved, it allows a shot gun seat to be put beside the driver
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Old 05-30-2019, 11:31 AM   #12
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Replacing the existing door in-place lets you have whatever you want there. Perhaps you want a screen door? Better weather sealing? Less flapping over bumps? A lock?
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Old 05-30-2019, 01:46 PM   #13
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Replacing the existing door in-place lets you have whatever you want there. Perhaps you want a screen door? Better weather sealing? Less flapping over bumps? A lock?
^^THIS^^
RV style door, with insulation and dead bolt lock, and a screen door.
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Old 05-30-2019, 02:33 PM   #14
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Hot spit!
Where can I find one of those insulated RV doors with insulation..?
Prolly the same place that sells hot water heaters...
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Old 05-30-2019, 04:32 PM   #15
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Hot spit!
Where can I find one of those insulated RV doors with insulation..?
Prolly the same place that sells hot water heaters...
Just to be pedantic, you could have a device that thaws ice and produces water just above freezing. This would technically be a cold-water heater.
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Old 05-30-2019, 05:09 PM   #16
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And that would be semantically correct! Seriously, short of spinning a steam turbine, who needs to heat hot water..?
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Just to be pedantic, you could have a device that thaws ice and produces water just above freezing. This would technically be a cold-water heater.
Hey now!
Careful who you're waggling your pedant at!
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Old 07-01-2019, 09:10 AM   #17
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I'm considering removing the standard entrance completely and installing a passenger seat. The space below will likely be for the generator.
The main entrance will then be the old lift gate door, using fold down steps.


My only concern is that the entrance in the new location eliminates a bit of space by its very nature.


Have also considered removing the steps and keeping original entrance, but with folding steps. However, that seems like it would pose a problem of having to go around passenger/seat to get out. Also, that area can be a small office, with a wrap around counter/desk if sealed off.


Seems like a waste to have two big doors right next to each other, so it's 99% old entrance nix, and lift door as entrance.




Here's my bus so you can see where the lift door is exactly...


IMG_7756.jpg
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Old 07-01-2019, 09:39 AM   #18
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I'm considering removing the standard entrance completely and installing a passenger seat. The space below will likely be for the generator.
The main entrance will then be the old lift gate door, using fold down steps.


My only concern is that the entrance in the new location eliminates a bit of space by its very nature.


Have also considered removing the steps and keeping original entrance, but with folding steps. However, that seems like it would pose a problem of having to go around passenger/seat to get out. Also, that area can be a small office, with a wrap around counter/desk if sealed off.


Seems like a waste to have two big doors right next to each other, so it's 99% old entrance nix, and lift door as entrance.




Here's my bus so you can see where the lift door is exactly...


Attachment 35175
The handicap door is, IMHO, a perfect place for an outdoor kitchen. I only cook inside when it's raining. I plan to have a slide-out stove top and small top opening fridge that can be accessed via a hatch inside. But mine is at the back.
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Old 07-01-2019, 10:05 AM   #19
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The handicap door is, IMHO, a perfect place for an outdoor kitchen. I only cook inside when it's raining. I plan to have a slide-out stove top and small top opening fridge that can be accessed via a hatch inside. But mine is at the back.

That's not a bad idea. However, I will be installing some exhaust fans for the stove. I may just use two of the ones I took off the A/C condensers (there were three fans on each side).



Also, I will likely install a small propane grill into the side of the bus, that will slide out to use as a barbecue.
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Old 07-01-2019, 10:26 AM   #20
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Have also considered removing the steps and keeping original entrance, but with folding steps. However, that seems like it would pose a problem of having to go around passenger/seat to get out.
You can replace the door with an out swinging RV type door, and fill in most of the stairwell, leaving only a small step at the top step level. Then build in a foothold step outside for the bottom one.
If you mount the passenger seat just a few inches back there will be plenty of room to get past it.
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