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Old 02-10-2011, 07:58 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Join Date: May 2004
Member # 30721
Location: on the road
Posts: 3,953
organizing -> prioritizing -> designing

What started out as a plan to build a down-and-dirty camper quickly turned into something else entirely. I was spending almost every waking minute researching motorhomes and expedition vehicles and boats and homesteading and all types of other things that were filling my head with wild ideas. But I had a long conversation with myself and decided that I ought to make use of the resources I had available to do the best job possible. So I took a step back and reconsidered what it was that I was attempting to build and why.

Over the next few months I spent a lot of time taking inventory and making lists. Making piles too. I assigned everything that I owned to one of three categories, and in the beginning each category took up a whole room in my house plus my whole shop.

1) stuff I want to keep and will be taking with me
2) stuff I want to keep and would need to put into storage
3) stuff to get rid of

This was an ongoing process, and I found it to be extremely helpful. Having to prioritize things like this was an interesting exercise and I learned a lot about what's really important to me. Things I hadn't had to consider before because I'd never had to make compromises like these before.

In my day-to-day life, I started only using stuff that was assigned to the first category. If I needed something that was in the second category I either did without it, or used it and re-assigned it to the first category. Things I thought I wanted but didn't use got re-assigned to the second category. But it was the third category that grew to be the largest. By far. I just didn't need most of the crap that I'd accumulated. So I started getting rid of stuff. Almost everything. It was liberating, and what was left were only the things that I had made conscious decisions to keep.

Next I started taking measurements and trying to figure out how much space to assign to different things (food, cooking stuff, clothing, etc.). Began sketching and making some simple SolidWorks models. I looked at a lot of different floorplans that have been used in all types of RV's, but in it was the stuff that I wanted to fit into mah deuce that ended up dictating the layout.

I wanted to create a comfortable live/workspace for myself, and wanted to be able to live/travel comfortably with another person, as well as my two dogs. I would like to have been able to put the bed above the cab, but the construction of the box made that impractical. So I decided to make a futon-type couch that would fold out into a queen-sized bed instead. I would still build a cabover rack, but it would not be connected to the interior. Almost 50% of the storage space would be dedicated to food and cooking-related stuff. What can I say? I like to eat well.

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Last edited by JESSE_at_TLT; 02-17-2011 at 08:37 PM.
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