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Old 06-21-2019, 02:09 PM   #1
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2017 Basecamp
Preston , Washington
Join Date: Sep 2017
Posts: 11
Base Camp Rodent Proofing

I had a previous post about keeping mice out of my Base Camp and received a number of great suggestions that I tried and will report on. In the mean time I had a Chipmunk make a nest in my Base Camp. Now with mice AND chipmunks I decided this is war.

I'll start with the chipmunk. How the heck did that little bugger get inside? I realize a mouse can get into a small space but a chipmunk??? To solve this mystery I took one of my security cameras and placed it under the camper for a few nights. Sure enough I caught the little critters in action and found where (I think) they got in. They loved to jump up and crawl into the frame channel opening behind the rear jacks.

My simple fix - a piece of flashing cut and bent to size and screwed in.

I had to do this on both sides (picture is on the right side). After watching my rodent cams (one inside and one outside) I saw no more chipmunks getting in. It seems odd to me that somewhere in this channel is an exit with access to the camper but I'm pretty sure that is where they were getting in. After I put up the blocks the cameras showed the chipmunks repeatedly trying to get back in.

Now onto the mice.....
I found where they were getting in, at least one place. They scurry along the copper propane tube that runs into the furnace near the back.

Here is the view from the inside:

You can see where they chewed their way around the edge to make the opening bigger. Here is the view from the bottom:

You can see more evidence of chewing. It doesn't look like Airstream every really had this sealed up very well. So here is my fix - after much research I've decided to use copper mesh to seal up the openings.

I took off the cheesy plastic sleeve and packed around the tube with the copper mesh. I also packed around the tube from the inside. Here is a picture from the bottom.

I decided to replace the broken the chewed plastic piece with something else. Looking around my shop I found a piece of automotive heater hose.

I sliced it, drilled a hole and screwed it into the underside around the hose. I didn't want to use metal because I was worried about metal rubbing on the copper line and creating a leak.

Other observations: The chipmunks nest was well established in the space to the right of the battery container under the bottom shelf. It seems like their favorite nesting material was the insulation from around the heater duct pipes and paper towels from a roll we inadvertently left in the left shelves.
I was lucky that I caught it early before they reproduced and started stinking it up with urine.

Once inside there must be a rodent runway from the heater, behind the toilet and in and around the battery box. We know this from droppings, nesting material and last weekend while camping we heard them scurrying about at night. We could tell by how loud it was that it wasn't mice. I don't know if we transported these guys from our house to our weekend camp site or vise versa.

I think every Base Camp owner should consider making these simple modifications to help keep the critters out. Hope this helps ~Donn

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Old 06-22-2019, 06:55 AM   #2
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