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Old 12-17-2014, 07:15 PM   #1
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2011 23' Flying Cloud
Durango , Colorado
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Swim Platform

At the risk of all manner of criticism, I'll share this modification that has worked well for my 2011 FC23FB. I do so to encourage innovation and improvement of a very good travel trailer. We use ours extensively, on all manner of roads in all sorts of weather.

This Engineer extended the chassis C beams by 12" with a "swim platform" on which I can carry a bike or other light cargo. I emphasize light. I used a hardwood, Brazilian Tigerwood, cut to fit the inside of the C beams and secured with bolts. Made a hinged deck of plywood and Tigerwood to cover the expanded storage compartment for cables and hoses. Fitted chocks for Action Packers and a fork mount for a bike. Moving the bumper back 12" added crash protection to the rear end with an 'organic crumple zone'. 100 lbs on the tail decreased the tongue weight on from 14% to 13%. No noticeable change in towing characteristics in over 10,000 miles and all sorts of roads. What started as an experiment has proven to be a very useful modification. I must give credit for the inspiration to a heritage Airstream shown at the Puyallup RV Show 2014. No, the grandkids don't ride back there😉

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Old 12-17-2014, 07:27 PM   #2
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Looks nice but only time will tell if it is a prudent project. I could use some additional outside storage and this looks like a very good way to achieve that.
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Old 12-18-2014, 09:06 AM   #3
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Just curious....why wood instead of Stainless or aluminum?
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Old 12-18-2014, 03:22 PM   #4
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Swim Platform

Aluminum could work. SS would be too heavy. I like the look of the Tigerwood, (would have used teak if I had some on hand) to mimic a 'swim platform' (my nautical inclinations), and wanted extensions that would break away before damaging the trailer chassis C beams in the event of a rear end impact. No welding. Strong but sacrificial. Easy to inspect and monitor for cracking. Easy to remove if desired. The additional storage for light but bulky items such as hoses and a long handled washing brush is great. Version two might use Starboard rather than plywood and synthetic teak rather than the Tigerwood. This Engineer likes to analyze and tinker.

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Old 12-18-2014, 03:58 PM   #5
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When I bought our 1987 Avion 34W in October, 2013, it had an extension on the rear similar to yours, but mine didn't have a nice wood deck like yours. The original owner had a generator setup mounted back there, and it appeared to have provisions for mounting jacks on each side of it, like the tongue jack. When we bought it, it was just a platform. My initial take on it was that it detracted from the beautiful lines of the trailer, and I decided to leave it on all this past summer while we were using the trailer, thinking we might find a good use for it. For our situation, we never found a good use for it, so out came the Sawz-All one afternoon and I took that sucker off. I like it much better without it.

HOWEVER..... I'm glad yours is useful to you, and you did a great job of adding it to the AS. I agree that it needs to be used for light cargo..... I would never want something as heavy as a generator and fuel being back there. But, the original owners of our trailer took it everywhere, so it obviously worked for their situation. That's what I like about these things..... you can do what you want to do with them.
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Old 12-18-2014, 05:10 PM   #6
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Try a belt of conspicuity tape around those containers.
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Old 12-20-2014, 01:37 PM   #7
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"conspicuity"
Thanks for my word of the day! That'll be fun at ACE or Home Depot when I go for reflective tape.😄


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Old 12-20-2014, 01:50 PM   #8
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Go to truck supply house such as Fleetpride or online. 3M only. As we non of us want to add this to the body the containers are perfect for increasing your "presence" on the highway day or night. It's expensive by the foot and best by the roll. More is always better, so at least three sides.

Love the platform, too.
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Old 12-21-2014, 10:56 AM   #9
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Thanks👍


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Old 12-21-2014, 11:05 AM   #10
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Wait until the grandkids are a bit older and they talk you into doing this with the swim platform.

You may have to change your tow vehicle to a Porsche Cayenne twin turbo to get the acceleration, but once up to 50 kph you're good to go.

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