Camper Van Crash Test - Ram Promaster Forum
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post #1 of 10 Old 07-22-2015, 12:11 PM Thread Starter
Dave's not home
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Camper Van Crash Test

Campervan crash test,

This Youtube vid is sobering and makes one wonder just what if anything would hold together that is installed in our vans.


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=c9vZ...lB2V6&index=78
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post #2 of 10 Old 07-22-2015, 12:53 PM
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One of several reasons I will not have any upper storage.

Note that was a fiberglass--wood--whatever box on a chassis frame. I'd like to see crash test results of our vehicles.
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post #3 of 10 Old 07-22-2015, 03:56 PM
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It sort of makes one wonder if they should all have the inside partition option, with a door to close when traveling, I think most of the homemade conversions you see on here would have a lot of stuff flying around if in an accident...cupboards ripped out, closets flying off the walls , batteries coming loose etc....coffee pots, stoves, toilets all airborne at 60 MPH... "OUCH"!!!!
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post #4 of 10 Old 07-22-2015, 04:43 PM
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"Death by Toilet." Now that's a way to go!!
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post #5 of 10 Old 07-22-2015, 05:33 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by proman View Post
It sort of makes one wonder if they should all have the inside partition option, with a door to close when traveling, I think most of the homemade conversions you see on here would have a lot of stuff flying around if in an accident...cupboards ripped out, closets flying off the walls , batteries coming loose etc....coffee pots, stoves, toilets all airborne at 60 MPH... "OUCH"!!!!
Probably so, but so would factory RVs in my opinion.

Very few people would survive a 60 MPH crash into a barrier in any vehicle -- granted any RV would be worse than most other. Even 30 MPH in any RV is questionable.

The RV industry appears to be unregulated, so it would not surprise me if home built Class Bs would fare better than even newer Class As and Cs. What scares me most is the widespread use of slides that probably would not remain in place in a 30 MPH barrier crash.

As we consider either converting a van or buying a compact Class A (which are very different in so many ways), the safety aspect of a Class B is always on the "Pro" side. My home-made van conversion may be a little overbuilt, but I feel safer than in my previous Class C. That thing would have disintegrated on impact. Things like a heavy refrigerator would have become a missile.
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post #6 of 10 Old 07-22-2015, 05:48 PM
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I agree. If you have to worry about this stuff you shouldn't be driving a camper of any kind.
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post #7 of 10 Old 07-22-2015, 06:58 PM Thread Starter
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More crash tests

Ok Here is one crash test example that give some insight into how it is possible for an up-fitter from the UK (Bott that does trades shelving etc.) to pass a crash test.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XeP-_R0MYkc

Its possible to learn some stuff from this vid that could apply to a camper van conversion and the trades folks may find it helpful. What I learned from this vid is:

1) Use strong securing brackets (direct to the van frame) many times stronger than would be used in furniture construction. They used a safe working factor of 20Gees so take the weight of the cabinet and the suff in it and times it by 20 to get the tensile strength required of the bracket divided by the number of brackets used = tensile strength required per bracket. They talk of the bracket stretching/absorbing the shock, so choose a material that will elongate but not brake. I guess a mild steel would work well. It also seemed they used a bend pattern in the bracket that would straighten under high load acting a a shock absorber.

2) looks like one of the main components of there safe design, is the cabinets and shelves act as a shock absorbing envelope that does not come apart under extreme shock. I would not think that standard furniture/cabinet construction methods and hardware would withstand anything more than a minor accident.

Dave
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post #8 of 10 Old 07-23-2015, 12:15 AM
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Not that I ever want to test it, but I'm feeling quite good about the setup we'll have. Using 80/20 aluminum framing for all of the structures. Structures that will be attached to the floor, walls, and each other. Basically a monolithic structure on each side of the van. Biggest concern I'd have on the inside of the van would be keeping the fridge in place. It'll be the heaviest item on the interior.

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post #9 of 10 Old 07-24-2015, 06:47 PM
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at least the vino didn't break
;-)
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post #10 of 10 Old 07-24-2015, 08:26 PM
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Glad I didn't find this thread until after you added that BOTT link, Dave. Just having the images of the Vario camper van crashing in my mind w/o knowing there are safer ways to store things would have been pretty unsettling.
Maybe I'll keep my cargo partition afterall! Probably not actually, I didn't want it (it was installed when I got it and is the only thing I really didn't want, so ...) and was/am(?) planning to remove it this weekend, but now I may not get rid of it (wish there was a door in the partition though).

Zyzzyx, spot on regarding the fridge. Having that 100+ lb hunk of metal hitting you from behind as you bounce back from the airbags, would definitely leave a mark. And, that Vario camper test van was going less than half the speed limit of most US highways.

FCA should get together w/ Bott and the people who design the chassis in these cars (watch the driver in the first video's hands as his car comes to a stop -- apparently a million dollar steering wheel):

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BK1SHu78v-0

And,

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AtrzvwayniM

That's 186 mph for us 'yanks', almost straight into a concrete wall, w/ only a slight deflection from a water barrel to one of the front wheels as he goes airborne.
What seems to be a thumbs up sign from the driver as the car slides on its side to a stop is a testament to the 'it is possible to make these vehicles safe' notion.

Hey, MB has a couple of F1 teams, don't they. Maybe they could get the ball rolling w/ their Sprinter and FCA and the other van manufacturers could take note.

Purchased 7/21/2015: 3500, 159" HR Ext, High Roof, Diesel, Sandstone; rear windows, rear cam, park assist, U-connect 5", partition w/ sliding window, cargo flooring, ... [blah, blah, blah]
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