New member. Brief introduction, our modifications, and future plans

Hello everyone,

We shopped around for a new Boondock 6w. The Boondock just fits in our garage, and we have 3 dogs that camp with us so we needed the extra room of the 6w. Eventually we found a great deal at Toms Camperland in AZ, on a "used" 2020 Boondock that had been returned after a month. (Maybe the previous owner is on here?)

We have had our trailer for a few months now, we have been on 4 trips so far and learned what we need, how to pack efficiently, and what we plan to modify. We basically leave the trailer loaded in the garage and just have to pack clothes and food.

We primarily boondock. We like to be in desolate areas for the privacy and so our dogs can be off leash. We like to hike, rock climb, mountain bike, and shoot so we try to camp somewhat near areas that appeal to us (mostly National Forest and BLM land).

Here are some of the modifications we have made so far (most of them were stolen ideas from this forum and Facebook. We still have a few more that we are working on before we are "finished"

2020 Tag XL Boondock, 2015 Toyota 4Runner, Northern California

Comments

  • Dr_DoomDr_Doom Member Posts: 37
    edited July 21

    Batter, Solar, and Poropane:

    Since we are mostly boondocking power consumption is important to us. Our TAG came with factory solar. I also purchased a Victron battery monitor. After a few trips we have learned that we use very little power (no norcold), and the solar tops us off nicely during the day. Our 3 and 4 days trips have been fine on power and on ice in the Yeti. I had thought about getting a larger battery but I think I will wait until this battery dies to upgrade (probably just a larger 12v, like a group 31 or something)

    I have thought about adding a port so I can use a portable solar panel for the times we are not in the sun, but I think I will hold off for now since the factory solar is working so well.

    The Victron battery monitor is amazing, I can see how much power each item draws and it really helps me manage my usage so that we always have power. I put the shunt in the front compartment above the batter and ran the cat5 cable along the frame of the trailer and mounted the display next to the radio.

    I added some sheet metal to the back of the front storage box, just as an added security so noting falls out. I still need to find some edging to protect the wires and my hands.

    I removed the factory propane shut off actuator under the galley and replaced it with a quick disconnect. I removed the regulator on my camp BBQ and added a needle valve to control the gas flow. It works great! It is a nice addition to the TAG burners since it gives us much more room to work with if we want to cook for a lot of people or if we want to cook meats.







    2020 Tag XL Boondock, 2015 Toyota 4Runner, Northern California

  • Dr_DoomDr_Doom Member Posts: 37
    edited July 21

    Interior:

    We did the typical 2" memory foam topper. We also added Hypervent aire-flow underneath the factory mattress to prevent any mold issues, it also adds a tiny bit of extra cushioning. We are happy with the bedding situation.

    We added a few key hooks below the overhead storage. Essential for keeping track of our lock, trailer and TV keys.

    We used Velcro to attach a clock to the wall, this is easier to read than the radio display, and it also shows temperature and humidity which is nice to keep an eye on.

    Our favorite mod inside was the AC removal, this give us a lot more clothing stoarge. It was pretty simple... cut, stain, screw in. The Varathane "carbon gray" stain, and "clear satin" polyurethane are a perfect match for the 2020 interior.

    The sturt arm for the storage area is a very cheap and easy mod. Should have came this way from the factory.

    We added some elastic to the cabinets to keep our clothes from falling out. I will make some brackets and add to this in the future.








    2020 Tag XL Boondock, 2015 Toyota 4Runner, Northern California

  • Dr_DoomDr_Doom Member Posts: 37
    edited July 21

    Galley:
    I did not like the small plastic faucet So I replaced it with a larger metal one. This required a few adaptations to the hose and some spacers to make it fit in the sink area.

    The metal back splash has worked well so far. I like the look of the wood so we only covered the sink and cook top area. I moved the pump switch up next to the speaker.

    I found the exact same door pulls at Home Depot, we used them as towel hangers.

    We added a magnetic strip instead of the hook hanger, this works great for our knives.

    We still need to modify the Yeti slide and stain it (the previous owner did this). I want to make the slide only for the Yeti and make an open cubby area for our dry food, this will give us a little more space and probably make it easier to slide out the Yeti.








    2020 Tag XL Boondock, 2015 Toyota 4Runner, Northern California

  • Dr_DoomDr_Doom Member Posts: 37
    edited July 21

    Exterior:

    our trailer is a Boondock Lite, the previous owner had the dealer add a yakima rack, and the yakima awning. We added a second awning so there I one on both sides.

    The previous owner added a rotopax mount on the side. I bought a 2 gallon container so we have some of our good drinking water while we camp.

    We added the Jack it up bike rack, I have since flipped the mount upside down to make the bikes sit lower. This has worked great so far.

    Since these photos I have added new springs and airbags to my 4Runner. It rides great now. Honestly unless Im going up hill I can barely tell its there.



    2020 Tag XL Boondock, 2015 Toyota 4Runner, Northern California

  • Dr_DoomDr_Doom Member Posts: 37
    edited July 21

    Interior Electronics:

    I did the PWM mod on the fantastic fan. It works great, I can set it low at night and vent the cabin with less power consumption and less noise. This is a very easy mod and it costs $15. Im sure the Maxxfan is better but I dont really think I need it.

    We are usually in the middle of nowhere so no hookups or cell service. So I added a media player to the Jensen TV so we can watch movies off of a USB thumb drive anytime we want. This media player is perfect for the TAG for many reasons; it uses little power, it doesnt take up much room, the remote is bluetooth so you can mount it anywhere, the remote controls the volume so no need to use the jensen remote. The media player is just an android tv box so it has netflix, hulu etc, but it will also play all media files including h265 and it doesnt have problems with audio either. I added a switch for the TV and media player so they dont draw any power while they are not in use as well.

    Since I removed the AC I swapped the direction of the PC fans and rubber mounted them in hopes of quieting them down. I disabled the lower fan as well. Honestly they are sort of loud and move so little air I dont think I will be using these. If I did I would make the hole bigger and use silent 120mm fans






    2020 Tag XL Boondock, 2015 Toyota 4Runner, Northern California

  • Dr_DoomDr_Doom Member Posts: 37
    edited July 21

    Future plans:

    Im sure we will change small things here and there but I think we are done for the most part. These are just quick ideas in paint, they are not to scale

    I do have 3 main projects that Im going to work on probably this winter while the weather is bad.

    1. Side table mounts. One on each side. will be used for dishes by the sink and for the BBQ on the other side. The mounts and table top swill fit under the bed storage.

    2. Modify the Yeti pull out in the galley. I will stain it to match. move the veti an inch over to the right (every inch counts), and make a cubby just below the cook top for dry food storage.

    3. Made a mount with quick fists for a rack and shovel on the roof rack.

    4. Make some shelves under the sink

    5. Add some fold down mirrors on the bottom side of the upper storage bins



    2020 Tag XL Boondock, 2015 Toyota 4Runner, Northern California

  • beakybeaky Member Posts: 172

    we have the twin awning setup, Toyota puller, and bought at Toms

  • HikinMikeHikinMike Member Posts: 237
    edited July 23

    You didnt waste anytime getting those mods done. Welcome.

    2019 [email protected] Boondock Edge 5W
    2017 4Runner TRD Pro
    2013 Wrangler Rubicon

  • daveandcorlenedaveandcorlene Member Posts: 74

    Amazing mods Dr. Doom! Thank you so much for sharing...great write and photos!

    2021 TAG XL Boondock
    Toyota Tacoma
    Evergreen State

  • SunnySunny Member Posts: 1

    Great write-ups. Thanks for sharing!

  • evpeelingevpeeling Member Posts: 34
    edited July 24

    Great mods! I like the idea of adding a media player with streaming services. Currently we use an ipad with an hdmi adapter. I'm guessing the stock jensen media console cannot play movies from the usb port? I attempted once to play movies off a flash drive, but was given the error "unsupported format". My movies were in MP4, which it should have been able to play as MP4 is fairly universal.

    2020 Tag BD 5W, 2011 Subaru Forester, PA

  • beakybeaky Member Posts: 172

    what media player/app did you use?

  • Dr_DoomDr_Doom Member Posts: 37

    @evpeeling the factory Jensen TV and Stereo are not capable of playing video off of a USB drive.


    @beaky the media player is a "Xiaomi Mi Box S 4K". $50 at Walmart.

    2020 Tag XL Boondock, 2015 Toyota 4Runner, Northern California

  • evpeelingevpeeling Member Posts: 34

    @Dr_Doom Did you have to access the Jensen media player to connect the android tv box to the camper speakers? I'd like to connect the TV audio out to the Jensen but can't figure out how to access it.

    2020 Tag BD 5W, 2011 Subaru Forester, PA

  • WilliamAWilliamA Member Posts: 1,183

    As you say, the PWM conversion is probably the most useful and inexpensive power management mod one can do. The difference between that and the maxfan is huge. The major reason I went with the maxfan (after noise reduction) was the ability to leave it open in the weather. I store my trailer outside so it was necessary to be able to vent air without running the fan in wet weather. My wallet still aches from the cost of the maxfan but it has proven its worth.

    WilliamA

    "When I am in charge, Starburst brand fruit chews will get their own food group....and where are all the freakin laser beams? There should be more laser beams..."

    2018 Jeep Rubicon
    2017 [email protected] XL
    Boyceville, Wi.

  • GigHarborTomGigHarborTom Member Posts: 196

    A lot of great ideas here. We have pulled full size trailers and never thought we needed bags or overload shocks. We do have the factory tow package. I'm thinking we could use upsized brakes after all these years. Others feel as I do that the the 4Runner may have undersized brakes. They work fine but seem to wear more than they should. The electronics mentioned here is a bit more than I want to handle. We have yet to use the TV or sound system.

    Gig Harbor Tom
    Trl '17 [email protected] Max
    TV '03 SR5 4 Runner V8
    Kicks and giggles '66 Chev C10

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