Who, What, why?
Never one to do things small, when we made new friends over the pandemic, one of my now best friends introduced me into the world of overland and I went crazy. He (who I will call Bob) has a 4runner that’s lifted and has some fun attachments to get out of trouble in a pinch.
Bob and I worked on his 4runner to include a platform bed that rests over the folded down seats for easy parking and sleeping wherever he stops on the trail (based on this video. This inspired me to search youtube seeking ideas for how to over engineer my Ford F-150. I took a lot of inspiration for the design from this video, as I really liked the separation between the bed and the storage/functional area which allowed for standing up and changing clothes.
My search also turned up the automated camper lifts + tent sold by TopperEZLift which immediately inspired me to begin buying and building.
Bill of materials
|LED Cabin Lights||12v Universal LED Light Strip|
|Toilet||Portable RV Toilet|
THE LIFT CONTROLLER
The lift controller for the TopperEZLift is pretty simple in design, the linear actuators are connected directly through a multi throw switch to control up/down. The down direction is wired through a beeper that when powered beeps on a timed interval like a backup beeper on a bus.
The RF Remote I found simply takes the wires just like the up/down switch would and controls them with a relay. I kept the down button beeper wired to the down direction of the RF controller as a safety feature. This all can be connected to either your car battery or in my case, I connected it to the 100ah battery in the bed of the truck.
BILL of materials
|RF Remote Controller||Solidremote 12V-24V RF Remote Controller|
This is the control panel for the whole setup, much like you would see in an RV. The top switches from left to right control the cabin lights, water pump power, ridge (hidden in the drawers under the bed), and AUX port, which is the round power port just below the switch panel. Next to the AUX power port is the Renogy Inverter remote which turns on the 12v->120v inverter and activates the power outlet on the bottom. The lower left is the solar charger controller, 120v power outlet and 30amp RV power inlet. The batter can be charged from the car engine, solar panel on the camper roof, or the 30amp shore power inlet. Above the power inlet is the battery status indicator and can show power draw, charge, remaining charge, etc.
bill of materials
|Solar Cable Gland for Roof||Solar Cable Gland|
|Power Connector for RV||30amp RV Power Connector|
|Solar Mounting Brackets||Renogy Solar Mounting Brackets|
|Solar Panels||Renogy Solar Panels|
|Battery||Renogy 100ah Battery|
|DC-DC Charger||Renogy DC-DC Charger|
|Solar charger||EPEVER MPPT Solar Charger|
|2000 watt, 120v Inverter||Renogy 2000w Pure Sine Wave Inverter|
|Rocker Switches||12V SPST Toggle Switch|
|AUX Power Connector||Nuetrik speakON Panel Mount Connector|
|AUX Power Cable||Nuetrik speakON Cable Connector|
Bill of Materials
|Short Cabinet Drawer Slides||14″ 350mm Locking Rail|
|Main Cabinet Drawer Slides||Fulterer 5400L Heavy Duty 60 Inch Lock IN/OUT Drawer Slide|
sink and faucet
The sink was built from a 7″ stainless steel mixing bowl. I cut a 1 1/2″ hole in the middle of the bottom of the mixing bowl and installed the drain and drain set, then CNC’d a piece of particle board that attaches to the drain underneath the counter to mount the bowl mechanically to the surface. Then I caulked around the sink to help stabilize it from moving around and prevent leaks through the counter top.
Bill of materials
|Sink||7.25″ Mixing Bowl|
|RV Sink Drain||Sink Drain|
|Water + Waste Storage x2||1.6g Water Brick|
|Faucet||12v Faucet w/ Hose|
|Sink Drain Set||Bathtub Drain Set|