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Old 07-07-2007, 01:16 PM   #1
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Major Base Camp PITA solved!

Camping in the Base Camp is a lot of fun and quite easy... IF you have the tent attached. Closing the back doors from inside the trailer is NOT fun, at least not the Airstream way. The "lifting straps" are not kind on your back, especially if you're over 6 feet tall and pushing 50 (or like my better half, over 50).

Archimedes to the rescue! I rigged a block and tackle on the road side of the trailer and now opening and closing the lift gate is no longer a pain in the lower back. Also, there is much less chance of damaging the fiberglass because you're not slaming it shut.

We went to West Marine in Eatontown, NJ this morning and bought 2 small double blocks and some 3/16" line. A quick trip to the local True-Value hardware store bought the less expensive bits needed to make it all work. I opted for the sailboat hardware at the marine supply store because they are quite small and of quality and look that goes well with the Airstream. (The hardware store only had much larger, single pulleys anyway.) I had bought more blocks than we needed (I bought 5, but soon discovered I didn't need to rig both sides, so I used just 2), but I'm sure I'll find use for them soon enough. The blocks we used are a Ronstan RF20202 20mm Double on the gate and a Harken #226 up top.

Pictures of the whole rig are posted on my flickr page. The last 10 pix of that set are the lifting setup.
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Old 07-07-2007, 01:26 PM   #2
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Nice setup, problem solved. Was it Airstreams intend that you would leave the steps down while you sleep with a big hole in the floor?
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Old 07-07-2007, 01:38 PM   #3
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Wow, Bob, you have a great camp set up, color coordinated right down to the gas cylinder with your grill Good for you, improving on a good product! We hope we meet you two somewhere on the road, ~G
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Old 07-07-2007, 01:39 PM   #4
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Nice photos. Nice looking rig.
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Old 07-07-2007, 02:01 PM   #5
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Nice fix

Loved to see your pictures. My boys want a base camp now. It looks like fun!
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Old 07-08-2007, 01:02 PM   #6
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Hi Bob,

You may remember that my wife, Caryl, and I agreed with you in April as to what a PITA it was to open & close the steps from the inside. At that time we told each other that we just knew you would solve the problem. Well, you certainly have and the solution is elegant in it's simplicity. I, too, am surprised you didn't have to pulley both sides and your connecting the upper block to the pole webbing is very ingenius. Congratulations!!! Are you a physicist or something?

Regards,

Jerry
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Old 01-03-2016, 08:53 AM   #7
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Hello Jerry. Bumping this thread. I am going to install your design on our Basecamp this month as part of the winter chores. After the time living with the solution is there anything else you would do? Or would do differently? I've ordered the blocks from a marine supply outfit and will pick up the other parts at the local Lowe's.
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Old 10-03-2016, 05:23 AM   #8
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Great idea! Thanks for sharing
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