When I was younger we would go camping for entire summers. Me and my brother knew every bike trail in the state parks that we would visit. I have very fond memories of those summers. So I decided that one of my goals is to visit every state park in Texas. Texas has 89 state parks and two national parks. To be prepared for camping and because I’m not very fawned of pitching a tent, I made my SUV into a mini camper with a bed in the back. I’m going to tell you how I did my car, but my terminology isn’t the best when it comes to cars. I’m not a mechanic and I don’t say that I am. So please forgive me now.
So I first took some measurements: A). I measured from the floorboard of the back seat to the top of the back seat when it is folded in the down position. Roughly 16 inches. B) Then I took another measurement of the cargo area’s floorboard to above the “hump” if where the back seat folds down. (See the picture below). C). Lastly I measured where the front seat is to the back of the cargo area.
Off to The home improvement store. I bought two sheets of plywood, 6 inch wooden furniture legs and 16 inches wooden table legs, screws, hardware for the legs, and a piano hinge. (I’ll explain the hinge later) also got some carpet on clearance to cover the platform. I’ll have links to the things I bought that you can get on Amazon below.
16 inch table legs
6 inch wooden couch legs
Hardware to attach legs
So I get back to the house and get out my drill, saw, measuring tape, and cut my plywood and attach the hardware for the legs in every corner and a couple in the middle of the cargo area is the 2 – 16 inches table legs go in the front near the front seat to give the head some support. All the legs unscrew to be able to remove easily so I could fold it up when it wasn’t in use. The 6 inches furniture legs go in the back in the cargo area. I made a front piece and a back piece and attached the two with the piano hinge. So that I could fold it up when I wanted to use the back seat.
I have used this a lot more than just camping. I used it when I worked 16 hour shifts and to tired to go home. And I have used it in an ice storm and not wanting to spend the money on a hotel room. I put a four inch mattress topper on it and it’s better than my bed at home. Also, I bought a generator and hook up a heater to it or a fan depending on the weather. I have an exhaust fan that goes on one of the windows when I sleep and I made window covers that slide on and off easily to give me some privacy. And that’s how I transformed my SUV into a mini camper. It comes in handy a lot more than just camping.
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