[email protected] XL Modifications - Long list, nearly done!!

HitechHitech Member Posts: 14
edited February 13 in Modifications & Upgrades

Just got my 2019 trailer. Working on it the last 2 months. Knew I was going to remove the AC and Micro as we mostly dry camp and don’t need AC in the Sierras. Found that there’s quite a bit of unused space behind all the cabinet walls. I removed the back walls of the cabinets and used the scrap to fill in the shelf. Stained areas as needed. Added about 6 inches to the rear of the left and right shelves and made them usable for clothes storage.

Filled in the side vent holes and the massive vent in the floor so no moisture behind the cabinetry going forward.



Routed and fastened wiring so the AC area could be paneled in all the way to the back wall. Ordered door kit from NuCamp. May change its orientation like a post I found here so it folds out like a table.

Cut out the huge open space below the stereo for storage. Used the trim from around the AC unit to finish it off. Thought about shelves or a door but decided the open spot would be easier to use. Hole in back wall was from cord to electric frig. Drilled new hole down by floor for wire. Glued that plug in the old hole.



Opened the service panel on each end of the headboard. Installed $2 cabinet magnets to allow it to be removed at will with button handle. Figured it would be a good place for wallet, spare keys and other hidden treasures. Was going to open the front side for access but decided I didn’t have tools to cut nice openings in such a tight high vis area.


Added a 3 inch lift kit. Cut off the extra fenders length and have yet to weld on side steps so I can step on something to get to roof. Will cover those in diamond plate to match fenders.

Removed microwave and it’s false floor. Ordered door kit from NuCamp. Added a slide out drawer for kitchen ware. The more storage the better.


Added a Yakima rail rack (comes on the Boondock edition) and installed a Rhino Rack full exterior awning. Currently modifying a roof rack with a hinge door so the Fantastic Fan ceiling vent can be opened. (When rack is empty of course)


Installed a 2 6 volt battery system. Removed larger gas bottle as we won’t do more that water on the rear kitchen stove. Needed the room for the dual battery box. Folded down rear lip of storage box and put a piece of mesh aluminum to the back for storage. More storage and drainage! Moved battery switch and propane valve so everything fit. Used silicone to seal the underside of he riveted top of the box. Put a bead on the open edge so water doesn’t drip in the box. Installed stainless latch lock. Expensive batteries!! Also installed a $20 voltage monitor. May install a nicer unit inside after I see how it performs in the field.


Still on the todo list;

100 watt portable solar system

Rear trailer hitch for bike carrier (flush with rear frame)


Portable propane shower system

Thinking about dropping some 18x36 boxes in the bottom of the floor to deepen the under floor storage.

Exterior side room (opposite side of Rhino Rack) so my wife has a changing room or place for portable toilet For use at night.

Love seeing everyone’s mods and getting ideas. Desperate for spring time so we can get this thing out camping!!!!

[email protected] XL
2017 Jeep Rubicon Hardrock

Comments

  • Michigan_MikeMichigan_Mike Administrator Posts: 486

    Whoa!!!! Wait to go and thanks for sharing your work. This is really nice work and how we make these trailers our own “home on wheels.” Very nice innovations in saving and making optimum use of available space and a great example of customizing things and adapting to your style of camping. I’ve done similar things in the past along the trail having owned 5 teardrop trailers and it’s interesting to see how people adapt things to suit their particular style of camping. We ordered a new [email protected] 400 back in the summer of 2018 and it was custom built to our specifications and via my past experiences in modifying the smaller teardrops and knowing what worked best for us in the past.

    And inasmuch as I do like the 400 my heart still resides in the smaller teardrop units. I started out with a 4 wide Little Guy unit after purchasing it sight unseen from an RV company in Virginia back in 2009. That is when my love affair with the smaller units began and the rest was history.

    When owners like you share this type of work and take the time to photograph each step along the way it really says a lot about your love for not only the trailer, but the outdoors. It also helps others who want to take that next step, make incremental changes to their trailers and forge ahead in both learning new skills and making their trailer their own. I’ve met many interesting individuals over the years and some very innovative and clever people at that! This is what the forum is all about and I look forward to seeing more of these examples in the future.

    Thanks again and keep up the great work!

    Michigan Mike
    Linden, Mi
    2019 [email protected] 400

  • beakybeaky Member Posts: 155

    see you this Spring on 395

  • HikinMikeHikinMike Member Posts: 212

    What a transformation. All the mods look like they came from the Factory. Nice job.

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

  • Fourman110Fourman110 Member Posts: 194

    Fantastic mods! That inside cabinet mod should be standard. Those 5 inch-ish deep shelves are not helpful, especially knowing it's mostly empty space behind it.

    “I'm [email protected] Out"
    Jay

  • HitechHitech Member Posts: 14
    edited December 2019

    I know that their intent was that the wall is hollow for the ac unit venting, but I agree that it’s a ton of unused space. I’ll likely end up cutting a few more openings for other pocket shelves at some point, but this helped quite a bit. From the online photos I really was disappointed when I showed up to buy my trailer and saw just how short the shelves were in person. This makes them very usable.

    [email protected] XL
    2017 Jeep Rubicon Hardrock

  • HitechHitech Member Posts: 14

    Thanks Michigan-Mike. Some times I worry I spend more time prepping for camping that camping itself. We went the other route initially on campers. Started with a 19ft camper, then a 25ft with 2 slide outs. So happy I’m getting more compact now. Gets back to the root of the camping experience for me. I do love modifying stuff. Been doing to pretty much everything I have since I was a kid. This project on the [email protected] gave me a real appreciation for just how well these are built. Only when you tear something apart do you really see that. So glad I chose this over the numerous other trailers I investigated. Think it will directly compliment our camping style. We do a lot of remote camping and tow with a Jeep Wrangler. These seem to be the best weight to feature units I could find, and I did a considerable amount of review!

    [email protected] XL
    2017 Jeep Rubicon Hardrock

  • Stlrider26Stlrider26 Member Posts: 4

    Where did you get the 4” lift? Any info would be appreciated

  • HitechHitech Member Posts: 14

    I believe I got that from Etrailer.com. They also had a 4 way to 7 way converter I bought to bring my trailer home. I didn’t have a 7 way plug on my Jeep when I bought it, but have since added the kit. The converter just gave me trailer and brake lights but didn’t run the electric brakes. Worked fine to get it the 80 miles home.

    [email protected] XL
    2017 Jeep Rubicon Hardrock

  • WilliamAWilliamA Member Posts: 1,174

    Reading this I'm reminded of us 5 boys in the back seat of my dad's 53 pontiac (straight 8!) my mother calmly proclaiming over the screaming:
    "There's plenty of room back there for all of you....and Joe...quit stabbing William with that knife...is that my good pairing knife?"

    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.

  • ElPhoenixElPhoenix Member Posts: 37

    @Hitech these mods are amazing! Thank you for taking the time to share all this with us. I know how much extra work it adds. For a beginner, like myself, it's folks like you that allowed me to cross the line from curious onlooker to full fledged owner. We're currently on our maiden voyage and my [email protected] is already the greatest investment I've ever made.

    Do you have any pictures of the brackets mounting your Batwing to the Yakima rack? I just posted my current battle with the thing.

    Thanks, again!

  • HitechHitech Member Posts: 14

    I struggled a little with how I wanted it mounted as well as I was looking for it to be really cleanly mounted and the brackets they supply don’t do that as well as I would have liked. I found a good solution and will send you a couple pics this weekend.

    [email protected] XL
    2017 Jeep Rubicon Hardrock

  • HitechHitech Member Posts: 14

    Here’s how I did my brackets. Similar to you I wanted the Rhino rack further over my roof so water wouldn’t drip between it. I let the rail bolt stick inside the Yakima bar like you did. Found that the stainless u-bolt fit in a groove behind the rubber on the Yakima tower. This allowed me to slip the whole unit inwards just the couple inches I wanted. I drilled a single bolt through the entire bracket and Yakima bar for additional strength and used a thick washer so it matched the height of the rest of the bracket as the bracket now sits on the tower clamp. Here’s a few pics.


    [email protected] XL
    2017 Jeep Rubicon Hardrock

  • HitechHitech Member Posts: 14
    edited January 22

    Finished the fender steps. Really needed something to stand on to get to the top rack. Welded these on and covered them in some diamond plate. Sturdy as can be!


    [email protected] XL
    2017 Jeep Rubicon Hardrock

  • HitechHitech Member Posts: 14
    edited January 22

    Also finished the roof rack with the cut out hinged section for my roof fan. Needed the extra storage space for camp gear but didn’t want to loose the vent. Little cutting and a welded hinge and catch. Good to go!


    [email protected] XL
    2017 Jeep Rubicon Hardrock

  • KycamperKycamper Member Posts: 1

    Love these mods! I can't believe all the space behind the shelves and AC. I'd like to know about the rear bike rack you mention. How are you going to attach that?

  • GigHarborTomGigHarborTom Member Posts: 177

    Quality craftsmanship/engineering....Nice

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

  • Bob297Bob297 Member Posts: 62

    @Hitech said:
    Finished the fender steps. Really needed something to stand on to get to the trot rack. We led these on and covered them in some diamond plate. Sturdy as can be!
    https://us.v-cdn.net/6030201/uploads/323/XXHL4MKKUHL4.jpeg
    https://us.v-cdn.net/6030201/uploads/921/HLK28JF3DND4.jpeg

    I think nuCamp should consider this mod for next years Boondock model

    2017 [email protected] XL MAX—Lifted
    2015 Tacoma TRD 4x4 Off-Road V6

  • ElPhoenixElPhoenix Member Posts: 37

    @Hitech we found a way to get some aluminum fabrication done to create spacers for the awning to resolve the same issue. The spacers raised the awning 2.5 inches which is exactly what I was hoping for.


  • HitechHitech Member Posts: 14

    Those are real nice! I like the idea of the slight lift as my rhino rack does make a little contact with the rear door when opened.

    [email protected] XL
    2017 Jeep Rubicon Hardrock

  • WilliamAWilliamA Member Posts: 1,174
    edited January 23

    Hitech,
    I've been poring over the details of your work and must say BRAVO! Nice work! I really like the way you increased the depth of the top cabinets. Nice. I've always had that on "the list" too. It's the next one down the list after: "Go in the house and play video games".

    You seem to have found a great match for the stain color. Might I enquire as to what it is?

    Keep on putzin'! A couple more years of clever upgrades and it'll start to look like mine, which mostly means it'll look like some kids built a fort in the ravine behind the house. Looks like your attention to detail will keep that from happening though... B)

    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.

  • HitechHitech Member Posts: 14

    Varathane American Walnut. I used a satin clear over this. Got it at Lowe’s. Biggest issue it to use the same lumber as NuCamp.


    [email protected] XL
    2017 Jeep Rubicon Hardrock

  • WilliamAWilliamA Member Posts: 1,174

    Thanks. I haven't tried that one.

    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.

  • HitechHitech Member Posts: 14

    Here’s another benefit of the rear hitch mount I installed. I can plug in my storage rack and bring my bbq, load of wood, etc camping!


    [email protected] XL
    2017 Jeep Rubicon Hardrock

  • daveandcorlenedaveandcorlene Member Posts: 69

    Amazing mods Hitech!

    2021 TAG XL Boondock
    Toyota Tacoma
    Evergreen State

  • SgtYorkSgtYork Member Posts: 5

    What 3" lift kit did you use on your [email protected]? I have a 2018 and would like to raise in some. Fenders sit to close to tires/ Thanks

  • HikinMikeHikinMike Member Posts: 212

    Hitech, You said to use the "same wood as nuCamp" What type of wood is that?

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

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