The next "conversion" I had in plan when I was still driving around with the little Patrol
Thats an air tank. For about 4 years now, I already had a brand new 10 liter air tank at home, which I have now finally installed on the chassis and connected to an ARB compressor, which I have not been able to mount in the car since the car was restored.
Already when restoring the vehicle, I envisioned the space where the tank will be installed, so the installation was not demanding. Below the left and right sills, I added quick couplers to the back so there’s no need to pull air hoses around the car.
With the tank, I mainly gained the opportunity to be able to use a blow gun, which usually comes in handy for blowing out an air filter
Under the hood I also mounted what the Japanese could do they are making the car... gas struts for the hood (original from Toyota LC80 - just in case I left the original rod
So, the continuation of making the bed follows. The back seats went out, and so we did this:
As usual, it also took me quite a while to measure everything, map out a path and then transfer a idea to paper.
The storage compartment under the bed will have a double bottom. Mainly because of the easy access to the electrical installation and similar things, and also for some storage a variety of other things (the ones you don't need often).
In addition to the rather spacious storage space, I also want to improve the sound system. Nothing shocking, just a slightly better sound that I need occasionally on long transfers.
There will also be a small space where the electrical components will be hidden.
Almost at the end. We are just need to make some lids and we're done!
Finished product, before electrification and upholstery
The opening in the middle is for electrical components.
Here will be an amplifier for car acoustics, a fuse / relay panel for additional consumers, smart electronics device that take care of the proper charging of two batterie system while driving and a solar regulator (once upon a time). Also there will be aditional USB sockets for powering phones, cameras and other stuff ...
The volume of the right side of the storage is huge despite being split in half.
Under the cover, you can easily access the electrical and air wiring - (second half of storage)
It is plenty of space also on the left side of the storage
The last part of making a dream indoor bed with a drawer system continues with laying the upholstered.
I use Pattex textile adhesive, which is the most resistant to temperature fluctuations
All joints were sealed with sealant before I put in upholstery. The box where is going to be mounted woofer speaker has also been given anti-vibration coating.
Speaker itself. Ground Zero GZIW 250X-II
I am very happy with the sound. Low, no-smashing bass, which in combination with the tweeters in the front conjures up a great acoustic experience.
The edges of the panels are protected with aluminum profiles, which I powder-painted in black to match the interior.
I also made sure that all the drawers under the bed also have ventilation openings.
These elastic nets ensure the storage of small items, which I still want to have as handy and close as possible.
I installed three such nets. One on each side and one for the front passenger seat.
The storage net behind the passenger seat serves me to have all the documents (like car documents, visas, passage de carnet and similar things) always at hand if I am stopped by a police or other roadside check.
In the central space, there is a small electrical cabinet that serves to power car acoustics, USB sockets for charging various electrical devices and some other things. There is also a fuse box and relay station behind the pannel.
Control panel located between the two front seats.
By pressing the "power" switch, both USB (actually four - 2x 2.5A and 2x 5A) plugs get power, and you can also monitoring the voltage in the auxlilary battery on the screen.
All additional consumers in car are tied to a secondary auxlilary battery ... More on that in another topic
By pressing the interior lights switch, we control the the drawer lighting. ON/OFF
We also took care of the ambient and at the same time useful lighting of the drawers. The LED strip, which is placed under the edge of the bed, illuminates the side walls of the bed, so you can see the intems in the storage net.
Meanwhile the LED strip inside the drawer takes care of proper lighting of the cargo space under the bed. The lighting system is tied to the original switch on the doors, witch turn on the interior lighting in the car. So, every time we open the door, the side lighting and the lighting in the drawer also comes on. If desired, the lighting can be switched off with a switch on the center console, located between the front seats.
Lighting of the cargo space under the bed.
Here you can see just how good the lights are working!
The space under the bed is very spacious and perfectly meets my needs.
In the space on left side I usually put away a bag with a computer, a bag with photo equipment, a bag with a drone, a bag with medicines siply and more...
In the right space, however, I usually store, kitchen utensils like barbecue, charcoal and stuff like that.
Here I also store things which I buy at the grocery store, and which don’t need to be in the fridge.
The lid through which I get to the cargo space below.
The lid is not hinged, so I can just lift it or remove it for easier access the things below.
Custom made mattress.
The entire bed now measures 180 cm in length and 142 cm in width.
From the material used to upholster beds and seat parts in motorhomes, 8 cm thick. They also sewed me washable covers that are very easy to maintain.
I usually sleep with my head turned to the back door, so the gap between the two front mattresses doesn’t bother me at all. I also sleep in such a position because, I can stretch my feet over the bed, so I don't miss the longer length of the bed.
However, the mattress are separated precisely because that I can move them away when I need access to the lower compartment.
I also had custom shades made for all the windows in the car, which not only to provide complete darkness in the car during sleep, but also make sure that the space in the car does not heat up too much in summer, and in winter there are no excessive temperature losses through the windows.
Solar panels are the latest acquisition on the car and one of the best upgrade so far.
Luxury in an expedition vehicle is quite important to me, but to be flawless and that this not cause concern, it is necessary to upgrade the existing supply of electricity.
Of course, the first logical construction is a dual battery system, and its main purpose is to have all the added consumers in the car tied to a secondary battery.
In simple words - two separate batteries that work together, but for different purposes. One provides the starting power of your vehicle and the other the constant power of your campsite.
I searched the internet for the best layout for my vehicle and then I made a battery holder.
The bracket is screwed to the existing holes in the body, so no drilling or modification is required.
The secondary battery is located next to the expansion tank, but does not obstruct the view of the coolant level
Tight, but it works.
View of the engine compartment and both batteries.
I use two cyclic AGM batteries EXIDE EP450. This means that the electrolyte in the battery is not in liquid form, but contains glass fibers that are impregnated with the electrolyte. Because of this, such a battery can be placed in different positions and are especially suitable for deep discharges and solar systems.
Safety comes first!
In the immediate vicinity of the batteries, special fuses, design as a switch type, are installed.
The Votronic battery to battery charger ensures careless charging of both batteries.
Its job is to take care of properly charging the batteries while driving. To put it simply, when the vehicle is started, the alternator first charges the secondary battery, and when it is fully charged, it starts charging the starting battery normally.
When the vehicle is switched off, it breaks down the connection between the two batteries, thus ensuring that consumers draw energy only from the secondary battery.
If the Votronic system takes care of charging both batteries while driving, it is also necessary to take care of charging the battery when we are parked.
The charging system itself is quite simple. All you need is a solar panel and electronics that transfer energy from the panel to your car battery.
I use two solar panels, from the Dutch manufacturer Solarfarm, with a power of 100W, which produces 6A. So a total of 200W and 12A. However, this is only in theory, although on a beautiful sunny day when the sun shines the strongest, I get the actual 10A, which I am completely happy with.
The solar panels are placed on the roof rack so that they can be “opened” making access to the roof unimpeded.
For the solar regulator, I use exactly the same as the one in the picture. Otherwise, it says that it is MPPT, which I later found out is not true, since it is an ordinary PWM regulator.
To simplify again, the difference between MPPT and PWM controllers is that MPPT has a similar technology as smart chargers and consequently picks up maximum efficiency from the solar panel.
Unfortunately, due to its technology, MPPT is much larger than a regular PWM controller and I have nowhere to install it anyway.
There are also times when we do not have solar energy available. That's why I have another trump card hidden in the car, as long as I have access to 220V voltage.
It is an ordinary car charger that can charge AGM batteries with a power of as much as 20A. What can you wish more from your cheap 12V setup, ha?
For quite a long time I also had the desire to replace the front bumper, mainly because my old one weighed at least 80+ kg with the winch.
Somehow the most beautiful and least conspicuous (due to road traffic regulations in our country) seemed to me the original ARB bumper (ARB bumper is the only one that can be homologated -street legal - on a GQ Patrol in our country . With a little effort and luck...).
The price of the original bumper in Slovenia seemed too expensive, in addition, I would have to redo it to fit the 5cm body lift. So I have to build one for myself
(Yes, I know, I have quite a mess in my garage... )
I borrowed the original ARB bumper from a colleague, at least for some basic guidelines, which did not help me much in making my bumper at the end.
The differences between Toyota and Patrol are preety considerable after all.
However, I was able to make some basic sketches so that I had at least a basis to start with
With quite a few fixes, however, I was able to get a final design that should suit my Patrol.
I transferred the drawings to a computer format and I send them to cut out from sheet metal with plasma.
For the main "upright beams", I chose 5mm, everything else is made of 4mm sheet metal.
I only made the basic stencils, the others was simply cut from a piece of sheet metal with an angle grinder, because I had to make the stencils on the spot.
I was also lucky enough to find the right turn signal. From the pictures which I find on the internet of the ARB turn signals, I found that they are exactly the same as those from the Volkswagen Golf MK1. They only cost 8euro for a pair ( about 13AUD).
There was a lot of welding, and even more grinding, as the bumper is made up of thousand pieces. Original bumper is made with help of bending machine which I don't have...
This time I used a two-component base paint and for a first time painted over it with a raptor coating.
I painted with a regular HVLP spray gun, with a 2 mm nozzle and with a pressure of just over 30 psi.
I was happy with the result like a satiated dog
I even made an original stickers and numbers plate, so it does look just like original
And the end result.
It is not a completely accurate copy of the original bumper, because I made some small mistakes with the design, but the unprofessional eye will not notice that.
At the same time, I also restored the winch. Disassembled, re-lubricated, repainted and added synthetic rope instead of steel cable.
I didn't weigh the bumper, but I have to say that the total weight has almost halved.
And I'm happy with that.
See ya, when next modification will be at the end... It gonna be a superb thing
Guys, I need a little help.
I can't find heater hoses for my TD42 anywhere ... I've looked everywhere but I can't find them.
Is there a store in Australia that sends such things to Europe as well? I am aware that the price of postage will probably exceed the value of the hoses, but I really do not want to give ordinary pipes. I would like to have the originals.
The problem with hose on my engine is, that they simply cut them when they took the engine out of the car ...