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bajadulce

1995 3.4L 5sp 4x4 Bajarader (Put the sawzall down)

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Just stopping in. Wow 8" ceiling lift! Now that's some headroom! :sorcerer:

I got extremely busy and the 4x4 conversion project has been on hold all spring unfortunately. Maybe this summer will have some progress to report. Lots of great looking projects on this site since my last visit.

Also, did I read somewhere in the forum that Greg was selling his baby?

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I guess I was wrong, Bajadulce is back. Its looks sweet man. Mines is at the insulation stage...

What did you use on the walls? The wall skins are formed windows? Is that cloth? What am I looking at? Very nice...

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Hey Bajadulce...

Glad your back, Dude ! Use PM ? No, no,no ! I like reading your thread. Must be one of the longest ones on this site. Your creative , outside the box, ideas on what to do to a Toyota motorhome acts as a potting soil to ideas in other folks here, me being one of them. Don't let the cobwebs on the replies to your post deter you! New approaches to spiffin' up mans' gift to to the RV world are greatly accepted. YOUR INTERIOR IDEAS ROCK !

Btw, iffen ya ever want to Turbo-ize that sucker, I'll hug ya !

John

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well glad my lunacy provided a few laughs. I tend to only use my camper to go to the same place over and over (baja). So the interior/ammenities are designed for that desert wilderness/philosophy. Pretty boring actually.

@ 4x4 camper conversion:

Other bigger projects have kept me from working on the camper. Maybe I should just wake up and forget about all of this madness and just be content with the stock setup.

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Yo Baja...

I would wake up and be content. Ya got it made , man. Runs great, 20+ mpg, 80k on the engine and has a nice , live with it cab interior.

I go with a spare for the front wheels. Dual wheels on each side, if one goes flat you still have one good tire to make it to a repair station to have the flat fixed. Front have no options like this.

Sounds to me , you're making things a little complicated for yourself. You went basic on the interior, don't go all out on the exterior. Your " Keep it Basic" approach showed me what a person really needs in an RV. Leave the RV alone and whack something up between the other two, like maybe a Turbo on the short bed...

with chrome pipes coming out of the hood...

and raised suspension...

how about a rock crawler ???

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Hi Bajadulce. We made the same trip down to Cabo last winter in our 89 Winnie and had a great time, we are planning to do the same again this coming winter, leaving in late Dec. from here (British Columbia) maybe see you on the road, its a pity us Toyota Motor Home members don't have some way of recognizing each others rigs when we are on the road, we spent a lot of time in the La Paz and La Ventana area, one rv site we really liked was in La Rivera I think the name was El Trinidad, a nice place very clean,

Mike

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Also, did I read somewhere in the forum that Greg was selling his baby? :o

You heard right. It is for sale. My wife and I both decided that it was just to small for us. We are going to move to a larger toy winnebago or something.

I just recently installed a high flow exhaust from the turbo back. WOW what a difference on performance. Wish I had done that years ago! I also cut my table in half and fashioned some pins so that it can alternate between full and half. Getting ready to reduce the price. It can be seen over in the classifieds section.

The extra cab is a wonderful thing. Having a extended cab I would choose that chassis over a standard cab.

I do not know of any adapters to fit rear dual rims to the front of a 4x4. One thing you need to realize is that toyota did not make any 15 inc rear duals, only 14 inch. I do have 15 inch rears so I am guessing they were built. Someone did mention that Dodge might fit the lug pattern. So the point is a 4x4 truck will have 15 inch rims. A 1 ton floating axle will come with 14 inchers. These guys here might have or can build adapters for the front http://www.stocktonwheel.com/ they can definitely build the rear duals.

I only have a spare for the front.

I have not heard of anyone yet who has pulled off the coach from the chassis. Might need a crane hoist and a prayer. It would almost be easier to just convert the truck. That two is a huge undertaking.

In California if you upgrade the engine to a different year, or what ever, its way more than just the engine. The fuel tank, delivery system, all the electronics and warning lights in the dash must also be swapped over.

Doing a 4x4 conversion seems like it might be the easiest of all. Certainly there will be some fabrication to fit in the front axle or ifs. Different drive shaft for the rear. Higher rear springs. And while its all apart I would change the gear ratios to a lower one.

Looking forward to some more pics of the project.

Some of you might ask what do I use 4x4 for. I do use it in my driveway, just check the pic below. Thats what I have to do to get level. When we get another rv I will have to rent a tractor and do some serious grading in the driveway.

PS The water pump is still working Fine!

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Sexy table! That grade is crazy man. I assume you have good parking brakes and a set of good wheel blocks! 19K for a turn key one of a kind rare piece of motor history seems like a reasonable price. I have yet to see the camper first hand, but the pics look like it's a winner. Somebody is going to be one happy camper.

I ended up visiting the yahoo group searching for some info on T100 and 4x4 conversion, but that site seems more of a chatroom for ppl looking for conversation. It's cool, the ppl are nice, but it's really hard to find info there and too much of a headache weeding out info from chit chat. Eventually I ended up posting my frustrations regarding what I consider junk 4x4 camper options available to us as opposed to the European/Australian market. If anyone was offended by my apparent "diss" of US manufactured motorhomes, then I apologize. This lash out was more of an emotional response and venting to my frustration.

Anywho, eventually after enough surfing the web, I have finally found a sensible Toyota 4x4 camper which I would like to emmulate. They are very innovative, well thought out, and something very close to what I would draw up on paper if asked to design the perfect camper. Unfortunately nothing like this is available to us as usual.

toyota70camper.jpg

Here's there site:

www.tourfactory.de

Amazing .pdf file here

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What you really want is a 4x4 Toy longbed pickup with a six-pac inbed camper. They are design to lift in and out easily as all the plumbing is in the camper.

www.six-pac.com

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I just recently installed a high flow exhaust from the turbo back. WOW what a difference on performance. Wish I had done that years ago!

Sorry to butt in on the thread here, but I had a question about the flowmaster exhaust. I am thinking of doing something like you did to yours, how much was all the pipes and muffler? Is it real loud (neighbors and all) and I am wondering if it will help at high altitude. Mine has some running conditions at high altitudes, semms to be jerky and one time it kind of vapor locked, when I killed the engine and let it sit it was fine. Maybe the tranny over heated or something.

Good thread, a wealth of good information for sure!

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Look for a used 6pac and mount it flat bed like. Extend the sides down, install a few locking outside doors and presto mega storage. Don't even have to go inside for a beer just reach over and grap a cool one. The rear door would be a bit of a challange.

No idea how a Sunrader is hooked up to the frame, but several of the companies, who rented RV's here , would change the truck out every 3 or 4 years.

They would install a cargo box on the frame and you could find cheap cargo delivery trucks at the lot around the corner.

So IT CAN BE DONE.

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Sorry to butt in on the thread here, but I had a question about the flowmaster exhaust. I am thinking of doing something like you did to yours, how much was all the pipes and muffler? Is it real loud (neighbors and all) and I am wondering if it will help at high altitude. Mine has some running conditions at high altitudes, semms to be jerky and one time it kind of vapor locked, when I killed the engine and let it sit it was fine. Maybe the tranny over heated or something.

Good thread, a wealth of good information for sure!

I think total was around $400 plus. I would have to find the receipts. Part of that though was the custom down tube with the flex joint from the turbo. Muff was around #150, cat about the same, down pipe 124. I bought various mandrel bent bends from JCWhitney and a 10 foot length of pipe when I bought the cat and muff. My costs are parts as I did the labor myself. You did not say what engine you have???? Not really that loud, not like the glass paks. Really depends on your present exhaust and what engine you have.

Wow that's a sexy table! nice! And that grade is crazy. I assume you have good parking brakes and a set of good wheel blocks! 19K for a turn key one of a kind rare piece of motor history seems like a reasonable price.

I have yet to have the pleasure to make it to your annual Felton rally to see the camper first hand, but the pics look like it's a winner! Somebody is going to be one happy camper.

There is a guy over on the Yahoo group who said something about a 4x4 sunrader being just be a novilty item, hmmmm.

The truth is all the 4x4 sunraders I've seen are just novelty trucks in my opinion and a waste of time.

Anyhow, the table mod really opened up the back, one can sit and stretch out, tie your shoes etc.

The exhaust, remember Its a turbo, wants allot of breathing room. And as I have found in my hot rod days bigger exhaust has always helped. I recently took the Sunrader down to Aptos. I could easily do 60 to 65 back up highway 17 to Scotts Valley, and for those who don't know its a steep climb. Yes the exhaust made a huge improvement. And it does have a nice rumble now.

So how about a little 4x4 101

But first let me say that my other 4x4 is a 1971 Bronco, its not very pretty. Its well tested with the scars to prove it. I have been driving 4x4 machines since I was 16. I have a bit of experience with the front hubs locked in. Unlike the millions of 4x4 owners who have never seen a dirt road.

Would I take the Sunrader where I take the Bronco, no way but I have certainly taken the Sunrader to places I will never try to take a 2 w-drive. We are giving up some great spots in the Sierras.

Back to 4x4 101.

One of the biggest advantages of a 4x4 besides having 4x or should I say 6 tires bite the road is the transfer case. Having a full set of lower ratio gears is a wonderful thing at 8500 feet in the Sierras when you need to make that start up that 40 degree grade on a muddy dirt road. Its a big advantage on the pavement too. With the front hubs unlocked you can start in 4x4 low and work your way up to 3rd gear then shift into the high range with out stopping. At high altitude with no engine power it can make a huge difference. We recently did a trip up to Highland lakes. Its off of highway 4 at around 8500 to 9000 ft elev. Just past mosquito Lake on 4 there is a huge grade (22 degrees I think) dropping down into Pacific Valley. The trip back up through the hairpins is a thrill to say the least, and yes I will use the transfer case all the way back up. Highland lakes is about 20 plus miles off of 4, dirt road all the way, a bunch of steep climbs. Not really ruff but the ability to use 4x4 and lower gears makes for an easy drive and no worries about being stuck on a steep uphill grade hairpin and having to back down because I could not get going forward again.

There is some talk on the yahoo group that a 2w drive will go any where a 4x4 sunrader will go. There is a clearance factor and of course the lower gear factor. I wonder how a 2w drive would do in 4 to 6 inches of unpredicted snow in the sierras 20 miles off the highway. Can chains be fitted on the rear duals of a 2w drive 18 ft sunrader? In California its illegal in the winter to even drive in the Sierras without chains behind the seat or 4x4. Anyhow anyone who thinks they can take a 2w drive where ever a 4x4 18 ft sunrader can go must just stay on flat ground. If your all wonder why I am bringing this up, take a venture over to the yahoo group and read the thread there.

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Hi Bajadulce

Re. Baja When we where in the La Paz area we stayed out at Tecolote, but I would like to stay closer to or in La Paz sometime, I Googled Aquamarina and it looks like it is closed, too bad!

We crossed the border going down at Tijuana, my wife did the navigating and got us out on to the toll road OK, but we did miss the immigration at the border to get our Tourist Card stamped but did manage to get it done in Ensenada. We came back into the states through Tecate, much simpler! thanks for the tip on Protero camp site, we may use that this year going down, is it easy to find the immigration office in Tecate?

Mike

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IF/when I ever do this, I am going to do this so the camper comes off the truck when I arrive at my destination. I know that sounds complicated as crap.. but damnit I want to be able to go into town, get supplies or do some sight seeing. Repacking up the motorhome just isn't fun. And I could lose my great camp spot too! So NEXT year! I mean it this time.

Hi Bajadulce - are you thinking of those overlanders, trucks with slide-ins to the bed?

I've seen utility bed type 4x4 trucks Stahl or Reading(custom I guess) with a pop-up slide-in camper and they look awesome plus lots of storage and great functionality.

OK, I am drifting to a different forum now... oops sorry.

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Sorry guys, it is a 1987 22re FI 2wd 4sp auto, nothing special, but it is kinda special as it runs like top. Stock exhaust now, very quiet but under powered (like that is news) but I would still consider it snappy for what it is. I guess I should say a little under torque, because I can go close to 80 MPH in it but walk up hills. The vapor lock happened right before Bend, I had read where sometimes rust particles will clog the fuel filter or inlet so I had that thought, but then the altitude thing, and losing overdrive. My best clue is it always seems to get jerky (mild vapor lock like condition) right during the transition of losing the 4th gear (climbing) or it returning (descending); so must be like 3500 ft. altitude. It only totally vapor locked one time, and it was coming out of the hills (Shasta Range) so I had the thought that maybe the tranny got hot and a nearby fuel line got hot and there we have it, but I am guessing for sure. I do not know what I hope to gain with the sporty exhaust, maybe a little more torque and more deep sounding and more fun to drive.

Thanks again for the thread and all the info.

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There is a guy over on the Yahoo group who said something about a 4x4 sunrader being just be a novilty item, hmmmm.
The nerve of that guy! Greg, I'm, sorry, those guys got under my skin and I might have pissed a few off with my comments. Their views and mine are in total disagreement. They are mostly touring and/or weekend motorhomer's and I am using my rig as a longterm camp shelter not an RV. I'm sure when I'm older, I'll sing a different song, but for now, all of my camping for the past 20 years has been in the middle of the baja desert without water, electricity, or sewage for weeks and weeks on end without ever moving the camper. There are many others that do the same and they all have similar setups... the environment just dictates that. And so my rig is not meant for a weekend getaway with bathrooms, sinks and faucets etc. Frustrated, I said some stupid things in disgust which got me banned of course as I deserved. Sorry if my shitty behavior over there doesn't make for good relations here.

Before I bought this sunrader, I spent many nights thinking about how I could fabricate my own camper from scratch using cheap everyday materials. Then this sunrader crossed my path and that notion became history. The fact that it was fiberglass and of reasonable size was a plus and it only cost $1500. Ya it was old, but it seemed doable. It's a great camper, but 2 years later, I'm trying to find ways to salvage my time invested and make this thing work for where I want to go. I never was trying to suggest that ppl go out and rip up their motorhomes. I was just trying to reach out to those that might have similar interests and avoid some of the pitfalls that I dealt with in my past campers plus save ppl a ton of $. So ya it all culminated with me just saying this group is not for me ... just not quite so politely as that.

Re. Baja When we where in the La Paz area we stayed out at Tecolote, but I would like to stay closer to or in La Paz sometime, I Googled Aquamarina and it looks like it is closed, too bad!
Tecolote is a great beach. Aquamarina was great because it was right there on the malicon and you could walk to town etc. La Paz is prob my favorite "big" city on the penninsula and it's always refreshing to stay there for a day or two and get out of the driving wind and constant noise that is the baja Pacific.
We crossed the border going down at Tijuana, my wife did the navigating and got us out on to the toll road OK, but we did miss the immigration at the border to get our Tourist Card stamped but did manage to get it done in Ensenada. We came back into the states through Tecate, much simpler! thanks for the tip on Protero camp site, we may use that this year going down, is it easy to find the immigration office in Tecate?
Dunno. I imagine it is. I always just stop at the harbor in Ensenada. I understand that they are now charging a $5 dollar fine if you don't get it at the border tho? I didn't make it down last year unfortunately, so I don't know if this is true. When I was a college student (20 years ago), we just breezed right through there no passports, visas etc. We'd blare our horns and wave at the feds as they just laughed at us with our surfboards piled on the roof. Nobody ever asked for that stuff but of course you always had to have a tourist card. thnx for the heads up.

You should check out bajanomad forums. They have been around forever and are prob the best source of information on everything "baja" from politics to the latest road and weather conditions from ppl living and traveling the penninsula

I've seen utility bed type 4x4 trucks Stahl or Reading(custom I guess) with a pop-up slide-in camper and they look awesome plus lots of storage and great functionality.
Ya those look like good ones and a reasonable option.

I missed last year's trip to Mexico so I never got a chance to meet this couple below. These two are quite the craftsmen. They have built their camper from scratch calling it the SUPER CAMPER. Fun read and you should check out.

Super Camper

Here's some pics:

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They got in a small fender bender in baja.. and here's the video of their ordeal:

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Steve

I would be interested in knowing how much yur sunrader weighs now that its been modded. Ours is 6500 loaded to the gills. Like I said over on yahoo, no apologies needed.

Last night after PM'n you about chinooks I have givin it some more thought and I really like the idea of finding a chinook for cheap and transplanting the coach onto a late model toyota 4x4. Since I will be giving up my Sunrader 4x4 and moving back to the Bronco for my 4x4 camp spots. I really am getting a bit prissy and like having a solid shell sleeper instead of a tent on the ground. Looking at the chinooks it looks like the wheel base was not altered. Might be an easy transfer. The chinook is so light weight that one could do some serious 4x4'n and still have some comforts.

An advantage to the chinook is getting rid of the rear dual wheels. Rear duals have to do some of ther own plowing in snow and mud. If the rears can follow in the fronts path in those environments it is better I feel.

One year a buddy and I took the Bronco out on some snow roads, 3 foot deeep snow. What we found was in low range 1st gear we could easily idle across the snow and go just about anywhere. If I put it in 2nd gear and tried to idle away it would eventually loose traction and dig in. At that point drop back into 1st and it would idle back up out of the holes and keep going. Go figure as to why.

Now that I have the chinook 4x4 idea in my head I don't feel as bad about selling our Sunrader.

Super camper looks really cool. Not sure if I followed it correctly, did you say it is a kit that you buy? I will definitely add it to the site. I will check out their blog and contact them and let them know about putting them here. Hopefully they would like to create a story about the project, thanks for pointing the way.

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Super camper looks really cool. Not sure if I followed it correctly, did you say it is a kit that you buy?
No, they built it from scratch using sheets of this laminate called nidacore.
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These guys are quite the amazing duo. I would be willing to bet this won't be their last venture. As with anything, there are a couple things they could have improved on, but it looks like a rock solid camper. Gjob!

I would be interested in knowing how much your sunrader weighs now that its been modded.
I'm sure my camper weighs a bit less, but I wouldn't expect it to be that much to be honest. With the missing bathroom, tanks, water heaters, stove, AC and some other things, yes I would assume it's definitely lighter. However, the minute you make room for things by building cabinets etc, you find yourself stuffing those places full of gear. I am guilty of tending to bring more junk than I really need.
Last night after PM'n you about chinooks I have givin it some more thought and I really like the idea of finding a chinook for cheap and transplanting the coach onto a late model toyota 4x4. An advantage to the chinook is getting rid of the rear dual wheels.
I have been thinking about the same thing. This past week of gnawing around the webs reading and doing these searches have led me to the conclusion that my 18' sunrader is too big for what I want. However, it doesn't have to be scrapped. After long thought and with the inspiration of homebuilt machines like Ryan and Holly's Super camper above, I have come to the conclusion that it will still make a good camper, but will have to change even further.

I did some shopping on Craig's List and found this 3.0l V6 5-speed for $1000.00 as a candidate for a cab swap/flatbed. I wasn't really looking for a V6.. but oh well.

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.... to be continued.

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Hi, Googled baja + camping and it eventually led me here. I'm not looking for a camper as I'm happy with my travel trailer and all my motorcycles and other toys that I just have to have!

I had to sign up for forum just because I too would love to go to baja someday and get out on those dirt roads. I have the AAA map and it looks amazing. I haven't been inside a sunrader, but if it's anything like the Dolphins, then I know where you're coming from. RV manufacturers like to stuff these things full of frilly furniture and cheap crap with mobile home like slap-it-together craftmanship. I know, I've had several. And didn't they stop making these toyota RV's in the late 80's? That's 20 year old technology in gadgets and construction techniques. So I can see why you want to do it your own way. If I had the skills, I'd do the same thing.

But this is exactly why I am responding here. It seems a shame to me that after all the work you put into this, it appears you are going to in essence start over from scratch? What will happen to the perfectly good truck that it sits on? I don't think anyone is in the market for a chopped up 79 toyota truck without even a truck bed? However there are many ppl that would be interested in a tricked out 79 sunrader. :ThumbUp:

Since you have ambitious plans to chop it all to pieces, you should consider selling it and acquiring another beater or possibly junked one that has been completely damaged beyond repair. Somebody would be extremely happy getting their hands on your rig and the right buyer would probably give you some decent coin. You bought a rolled truck because cutting up your perfectly good extra cab didn't make sense. I'm suggesting you do the same for your camper as well.

Keep the dream alive whatever you do and I'll be stopping in here now and then to see what comes of this.

... Chris in the O.C.

:holloween: Happy Halloween

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Anyone seen this web page. Being a wood worker it struck a spot close to home. May not work on a short bed but that maybe could be worked around.' I would do the chrome black powder coat. www.tonkecampers.nl
Those campers are beautiful. I've been a carpenter all my life not a furniture or cabinet maker, so I'm just a monkey with a hammer compared to these guys. Thnx for link.
It seems a shame to me that after all the work you put into this, it appears you are going to in essence start over from scratch?

...Somebody would be extremely happy getting their hands on your rig and the right buyer would probably give you some decent coin. You bought a rolled truck because cutting up your perfectly good extra cab didn't make sense. I'm suggesting you do the same for your camper as well.

Ouch great advice! That really hits home and wish I wasn't so impulsive in some of my decisions/actions.

@WME and Toyota on Craig's list.

Hehe.. That's what I call a beater! I'm only interested in fiberglass shells for the ease of modification.

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BAJADULCE. Glad you liked the Tonke site. I"m a monkey with a paint brush but what fun it is. A friend of mine who has a refinishing shop just had a kid from England come in looking for a job. The first thing he told Rick was that he had gone to school for 4 years to learn the trade. Rick told him he learned to refinish because he didn"t go to school. His dad had the company before Rick and told him if he didn"t go to school, he could darn well go to work. I learned the same way in some very European shops here in Canada. I guess even a blind monkey lands on a banana once in a while. I found these web sites wandering around. R.V. supplies-parts ect. Hope they help someone. www.themetalcompany.com - www.myRVspace.com The last one maybe all lower case letters but this is what the logo had. Get something to eat and drink before you sit down. There is a lot to see Steve

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I lived in tents for 3-4 months at a time allover the far east, from winter in Hokkaido, Japan to the jungles in Thailand.

My current idea of roughing it is having to watch B&W TV

WME

Proud owner of a broom closet, different strokes for different folks.... Peace

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I lived in tents for 3-4 months at a time all over the far east, from winter in Hokkaido, Japan to the jungles in Thailand.
And that wasn't fun? Yuppies and Eco tourists would pay thousands of dollars to experience this today.

Question: What would relieve more weight from the rear axle?

1. Shortening the rear of the camper

2. Narrowing the camper

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