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Old 09-24-2018, 08:56 AM   #1
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Prototype of safer passenger/driver running board

Prototype of safer wider deeper passenger/driver running board - DONE!

Alpha test passed.
Beta testing on big trip this weekend.
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Old 09-24-2018, 09:07 AM   #2
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That is the rear hitch step, correct??

I like this!! That stock side step is useless... I have been looking at how to extend it out so that it can be use...

How do you have this secured to the stock structure??
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Old 09-24-2018, 09:34 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wachuko View Post
That is the rear hitch step, correct??

I like this!! That stock side step is useless... I have been looking at how to extend it out so that it can be use...

How do you have this secured to the stock structure??
WACHUKO - Yes, it is. Source a 24"x8"x1/8" steel plate. Spot weld or bolt to attach to existing metal step. Bolted for now until I am sure that I really like how it looks. Then will spot weld later.
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Old 09-24-2018, 06:58 PM   #4
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Any before and after pic? I don’t know what the “before” looked like.

I almost broke my skull numerous times at last year’s Houston RV show. I was a slow learner and kept slipping off too-narrow running boards on other brands of Class B. I really like the old Interstates’ running boards which are big and some would say ugly. Like the analog to 1970’s bell-bottom pants. But I don’t slip off of them.
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Old 09-24-2018, 09:47 PM   #5
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INTERBLOG - well, if some think the old running boards were ugly & they work, I would rather have ugly & safe, than blingy & unsafe. My original steps have got to be the stupidest design from AS. My wife also has had many near misses to a serious fall. And she's an adult. I have g-kids to worry about. I said that's it, I have to fix this. If I can make one that is safe and still decent looking and actually structurally better than the original (they had 1/3 of its topside parts held together by doublesided tape), then it ain't that hard to do.

Pics below (3old-3new) for comparison
OLD
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My NEW Prototype - almost ready to weld after
next weekend's trip, assuming no failures. Wife, daughter, & grandson already tested & approved.
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Old 09-25-2018, 05:10 AM   #6
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Expound:

What I said (blogged) back in early 2017, screengrabbed below. This is a nasty hazard because it is a set-up for a tailbone injury, which can be seriously disabling. I don't know why the corporate risk management people did not flag this type of design as unacceptable.

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Old 09-25-2018, 05:16 AM   #7
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T1N Interstate for comparison: look at the way they flared that running board in front of the slider. In four years, I've never once slipped on that thing. It's so wide there that I can also use it as a seat. That's how to do it.

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Old 09-25-2018, 08:23 AM   #8
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Quote:
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This is a nasty hazard because it is a set-up for a tailbone injury, which can be seriously disabling. I don't know why the corporate risk management people did not flag this type of design as unacceptable.
INTERBLOG - I think I know why, 3 words keep coming back to me - stupid/stupider/stupidest.
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Old 09-25-2018, 10:19 AM   #9
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Agree that the stock steps are useless - which is why we never use them. But as we age I am sure that we will want/need some step.

Does your modified step rest on the existing step or does it sit outside of the existing step? Looking underneath mine, the existing step is bolted to two 'C' channels. Couldn't you bolt your modified step to these same C channels? What is the width (perpendicular to van) of the tread surface of your new step versus the original.
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Old 09-25-2018, 11:21 AM   #10
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Alex - I see some improvement in your new step but I’m afraid it’s still not quite enough to allow for “face-out” exiting due to potential heel slipping.
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Old 09-25-2018, 12:29 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Titus View Post
Agree that the stock steps are useless - which is why we never use them. But as we age I am sure that we will want/need some step.

Does your modified step rest on the existing step or does it sit outside of the existing step? Looking underneath mine, the existing step is bolted to two 'C' channels. Couldn't you bolt your modified step to these same C channels? What is the width (perpendicular to van) of the tread surface of your new step versus the original.

Quote:
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Alex - I see some improvement in your new step but I’m afraid it’s still not quite enough to allow for “face-out” exiting due to potential heel slipping.
TITUS - It rests on existing step. 24"x8"x1/8" steel plate bolted on top (will post pic in a minute as I get it outside). 75% of plate is supported by original step. The other 25% is cantilevered. 9 stainless steel bolts temporarily support the steel plate onto existing steel step. The running board is bolted onto the new steel plate and into the original steel step. Bolting it to the C-channels creates issues I did not need to deal with. The other reason was so the new step would be at the same street-to-top-of-step height as the Project2000 power step on sliding door side. Step itself is 4" wide x 36" length. It sits approx 1.75"-2.0" past edge of original step.
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AIR99 - Yes, I am perfectly aware of that. However, one still has to balance the aesthetic with the functional with the maximum protrusion of step (i.e. it is past the outer bounds of front/rear track & well within the outer edges of side mirrors. I can not push it out to a depth that allows my size 8.5W feet to exit "face out" with entire length of foot inside the step. But I can exit face-out approx. 2" much safer than any un-modified AI NCV3 (not sure about the new 2019). Pushing it out beyond that point, the design would look outrageously ugly. I have already gotten much criticism in this forum for putting forth ugly designs for brain-storming, which is fine. That's the time to weed out ugly. But I know ugly when I see one. I can only go that far in the drawing stages, but I am not about to go that far once it is installed. In fact, a prior design that I prototyped just extended the original fiberglass mold. It was so ugly and proportionally horrible, it never got bolted on. (pic below)
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As my unit stands, it is already protruding approx. 2" more than original. I like the balance between aesthetics, dimensions, proportion, and increased safety. My objective as noted in the title is to prototype a "safer" step, not the "safest" step. Side-step exit is 100% safer for my 8.5W with 4" step & 4" wide foot. The design allows for another 1.5" adjustment fore/aft and depth. But I doubt I will change it.
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Old 09-25-2018, 02:39 PM   #12
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This is what I was thinking of doing!! A flat plate that I would install on top of existing step and build borders that would match that of the original step... paint it all silver to match, install grip tape and done!



It was that or looking at how I could integrate electrical step, like the one in the sliding door...

Looks like you cut that steel plate to do something similar?? Then changed direction and tested the longer step???

Just wondering if that is the case and what made you not to go that route.
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Old 09-25-2018, 04:14 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wachuko View Post
It was that or looking at how I could integrate electrical step, like the one in the sliding door...

Looks like you cut that steel plate to do something similar?? Then changed direction and tested the longer step???

Just wondering if that is the case and what made you not to go that route.
WACHUKO - I initially did measurements to try to integrate the Project2000. Problem was that takes a lot more room undercarriage. It would've necessitated complete removal of the existing structure and the surrounding body skirting from the mudflaps to the sliding door. Even if I were to commit to that, my E&P levelers were also in the way. Would've been nice

Yes, I cut the plate to originally follow the 45° miter on original step. The idea was to just bump out the exact profile (f-glass & all) about 2"-3". Bolt it down and fabricate a metal filler in between to level the gap left by bumping it out. Then grip tape over & done. But as you can see from the last pic I posted for AIR99, it looks very odd proportionally. Coz the step is now sticking out 2" further, but it's the same length. By using the 36" step, I increase the length by 10"-11" while depth only increased by 2". This gives a visually slimmer profile and is not as abrupt as a 26" contraption sticking out further.

PS. I really like that hitch step as that was my original use for it. I just happened to stumble into possibly using when I removed it from hitch and laid it down near the side door. It is very well constructed and beefy, not to mention it has clean lines with the alu finish
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Old 09-26-2018, 12:49 PM   #14
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I really like that look.
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