Ram Promaster Forum banner
321 - 340 of 432 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
64 Posts
@RV8R I really like your build, thanks for sharing! This probably covered in Building Stuff for Dummies, but can you give some insight how you transfer the hole locations in the van to respective panel? For example, at the back door with the ABS. How do you know where to drill the hole in the ABS so that it matches the hole in the door where you place the screw?
 

·
Registered
Van #2 2021 EXT
Joined
·
5,207 Posts
Discussion Starter · #325 · (Edited)
@RV8R I really like your build, thanks for sharing! This probably covered in Building Stuff for Dummies, but can you give some insight how you transfer the hole locations in the van to respective panel? For example, at the back door with the ABS. How do you know where to drill the hole in the ABS so that it matches the hole in the door where you place the screw?
@Mako74

You are Very Welcome; The "technique" is called "Match Hole Drilling"

First, I need to correct what you wrote above as this concept is very important to understanding how it works;

but can you give some insight how you transfer the hole locations in the van to respective panel?

The short answer is I don't. I transfer the holes on the panel I fabricated onto the van metal by drilling thru the holes in the panel once it is in place.


I fabricate the panel / then plan where I want the screw holes to be / then I drill the fabricated panel (or partially fabricated panel) 1st / then I "match the holes in the panel to drill new holes in the van

I have better photos of the process I used at the slider;

Here is my slider with no holes; Green tape is applied where i want holes and a line is marked so when the panel is positioned (covering the location of the hole I want in the metal door) I can measure and transfer the proposed hole location onto the "panel" 1st. The 25 & 27 are mm of where I want the holes from the line marked.
67342


So then the 1st hole is marked / the panel is drilled away from the metal slider / the panel is then positioned back on the metal slider and a drill bit is run thru the already drilled panel and a hole is "match hole drilled" into the metal slider. Then a "cleco" hole clamp is applied thru the hole to clamp the panel in place while the other holes are transferred onto the panel.
67343



As the panel is held in place with one cleco, I then mark and drill another hole (bottom middle - then cleco that hole). Then I marked and drilled the top corners & here is the photo
67344


Then I drilled the remainder & cleco'd those holes. Photo;
67345


Then I removed the panel and tape;
67346


Then I installed the panel back in place with cleco's
67347


Then I removed each cleco (one by one) and installed screws into the holes;
67348




The back doors were similar in "technique" other than the panels were cut about an 1" too large. Then the match hole drilling process took place so all cleco's were installed on the panel (setting the panel top the back door). Then transferring the door seal line to the over sized door panel and trimming the excess so the panel fit against the door seal (not by much).

Hope that helps & if you have any further questions just post them here !!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
64 Posts
Thanks @RV8R for a thorough explanation on this technique. I was too quick to think that you were using the factory holes! This technique is not all new to me (Cleco's are though) as I've normally done similarly with the help of rivets on some basic woodworks. :)

I'm still trying to figure out what would be the best way to transfer them factory holes to an undrilled panel.
 

·
Registered
2019 159 High-Top
Joined
·
98 Posts
Thanks @RV8R for a thorough explanation on this technique. I was too quick to think that you were using the factory holes! This technique is not all new to me (Cleco's are though) as I've normally done similarly with the help of rivets on some basic woodworks. :)

I'm still trying to figure out what would be the best way to transfer them factory holes to an undrilled panel.
I am going to use hanger bolts in the riv-nuts to mark the panel.
 

·
Registered
Van #2 2021 EXT
Joined
·
5,207 Posts
Discussion Starter · #329 ·
Thanks @RV8R for a thorough explanation on this technique. I was too quick to think that you were using the factory holes! This technique is not all new to me (Cleco's are though) as I've normally done similarly with the help of rivets on some basic woodworks. :)

I'm still trying to figure out what would be the best way to transfer them factory holes to an undrilled panel.
So to locate & mark van holes on panels I fabricated on the walls I used;

1) plastic sheets & a felt pen (Page 2 on my build thread & photo below)
2) paint on a bolt head that was temporarily installed in a rivnut

KOV’s very simple method of just using self tapping screws is a good way to do it if you trust self tapping screws. It is quick & simple. I probably would not use rivnuts everywhere when I build van #2. If self tappers hold up over time, using rivnuts is a lot of work for possibly a marginal gain. KOV has build 20 vans so if self tappers are good enough, he should know.

I am very much interested in Keeping It Simple (Although it may not seem like it).


plastic sheet hole transfer “technique“ Using 6mil poly
67355
 

·
Registered
2014 136” HR
Joined
·
7,463 Posts
When I started my build in early 2015, Sprinter Forum was my primary source of info. I was fortunate that at least there, as here, ideas and procedures were discussed instead of just put out as fact, as on YouTube.

One of the first things I remember was "1/2” stainless steel screws." I even made a note so I wouldn’t forget. Sure enough, more than five years later, those tiny little screws are right where I put them.
 

·
Registered
2014-159 HR in CT
Joined
·
4,484 Posts
When I started building mine (2014), I decided that if I wanted to change anything, it had to be "take-apart-able". Plus if I built a dud, I could take it all out and sell the van as a work van!

So. I have lots & lots of rivnuts throughout.

In some spots, I attached a 1/4-20 rivnut to a fender washer and drilled 2 screw holes in the washer so I could screw the washer from behind to 3/4" plywood. That gave me a non-pull-outable threaded hole in the wood. Did that to attach some items to the 3/4" plywood walls.
 

·
Registered
Van #2 2021 EXT
Joined
·
5,207 Posts
Discussion Starter · #333 ·
When I started building mine (2014), I decided that if I wanted to change anything, it had to be "take-apart-able". Plus if I built a dud, I could take it all out and sell the van as a work van!

So. I have lots & lots of rivnuts throughout.

In some spots, I attached a 1/4-20 rivnut to a fender washer and drilled 2 screw holes in the washer so I could screw the washer from behind to 3/4" plywood. That gave me a non-pull-outable threaded hole in the wood. Did that to attach some items to the 3/4" plywood walls.
Hey @proeddie

The ability to strip the van right back to the metal was a big factor in using mostly rivnuts & bolts. That & I believe the rivnuts would hold better & have less chance of stripping.

DIYers; We learn along the way. In hindsight, I would consider the easier metal screws over the rivnuts. After all we can also remove the metal screws to remove the panels if need be.

I would still install rivnuts where I would need a stronger attachment.
 

·
Registered
2019 118" Silver
Joined
·
1,966 Posts
Although the self-tapping screws I used were super easy and effective, have to say those other solutions are more durable. I've removed a couple side and roof panels to eliminate squeaks and on reassembly, a couple of the screws stripped out. Likely my fault due to over-tightening but it's a fine line and I had to set down the drill-driver and hand tighten to keep it from happening further. A slightly larger screw was an easy fix but then you have to keep track of where the larger holes are if you have to remove the panel again, which I've done. If I had it to do over again I'd probably use self-tapping screws again but take more time installing them.

On a side note - the rear-most roof panel is the biggest, with a large space between the last roof rib to the back of the van where the 'dome' light is, and my tempered hardboard (which is much heavier than the thinner baltic birch) is showing a very slight sag. I'm going to have to remove that panel again and find a way to support it better, which means removing at least one of the rear-most side panels too. No time now so a job for another day, but I notice a super-annoying squeak from there on colder mornings so it can't wait too long.
 

·
Registered
Van #2 2021 EXT
Joined
·
5,207 Posts
Discussion Starter · #336 ·
RV8R, you make me feel better. I had uneasy feelings that I had missed the boat when rivnuts suddenly appeared out of nowhere to be the end-all. But then, how much strength is needed to hold up a small panel of 3/8” Luan?
MsNomer, We DIYers have lots of design decisions thru our build journey. Rivnuts are not the end-all, but they can be very useful, as can screws. I think the “real world results” are very important for us all to report back our findings over the years “good or bad”. I have over 100 rivnuts in my build & I had 1 “spin” on me. I do have concerns that over the years with dissimilar metals “bolt / rivnut / van metal”, it could promote corrosion.

If you do get a pull out with a metal screw, you can usually get the next size up screw into the enlarged hole.

Another issue with the rivnuts in the PM is the van metal is typically 0.030” & that is not a lot of meat for the rivnuts. So far mine have been good, but if they become a problem I will report my findings here For other members to consider.

No Boat Missed !!
 

·
Registered
Van #2 2021 EXT
Joined
·
5,207 Posts
Discussion Starter · #337 ·
Although the self-tapping screws I used were super easy and effective, have to say those other solutions are more durable. I've removed a couple side and roof panels to eliminate squeaks and on reassembly, a couple of the screws stripped out. Likely my fault due to over-tightening but it's a fine line and I had to set down the drill-driver and hand tighten to keep it from happening further. A slightly larger screw was an easy fix but then you have to keep track of where the larger holes are if you have to remove the panel again, which I've done. If I had it to do over again I'd probably use self-tapping screws again but take more time installing them.

On a side note - the rear-most roof panel is the biggest, with a large space between the last roof rib to the back of the van where the 'dome' light is, and my tempered hardboard (which is much heavier than the thinner baltic birch) is showing a very slight sag. I'm going to have to remove that panel again and find a way to support it better, which means removing at least one of the rear-most side panels too. No time now so a job for another day, but I notice a super-annoying squeak from there on colder mornings so it can't wait too long.
Thanks HikerBob

I would probably use rivnuts again with the pinch bar in the ceiling.

The farthest “aft” structure above the rear doors have rivnuts & a trim board holding up the aft edge of the ceiling panel

If your screws are small enough, you could remove the ceiling & install rivnuts if you think that would fix your ceiling issue

Best of luck with the squeaks !,
 

·
Registered
Van #2 2021 EXT
Joined
·
5,207 Posts
Discussion Starter · #338 ·
IKEA ”Trofast Bins & Cabinet”

So in the beginning of 2019, we ordered 3 Trofast Ikea cabinets & stacked them between gables to use as storage bins for our camping items & dry food. The concept “although very utilitarian & not very aesthetically“, was quick easy access to everything & the ability to “grab & go” out of the van. Use wise we love these bins. We love that we do not have doors to open. They are very time efficient. We have a coffee/tea bin, a dry food bin, cooking & eating utensils bin, electronics, fuses, & charge cord bin, plates & bowls bin, garbage bin, etc, etc.

Love the bin idea. Aesthetics; well beauty is in the eye of the beholder.

We thought we would need to design a retainer system as in left hand turns we thought we would get bins all over the floor. Although they shift a bit, nearing 50,000kms and never had a bin come off the cabinets. We have had one issue with the IKEA dado cabinets and that is the plastic bins do not have enough ”meat” on some of the dados & the hanging top can slide off partially “jamming the bin”.

So I went to HD to find some 1/4” thick trim (hopefully in the same colour as the pine bin cabinets), but could not find what I felt was right. So I went & purchased aluminum. 32 - 16” 1”x 1/4” aluminum, 96 drilled holes then countersunk, & several hours of labour later all bins have extended retainer edges at the pine dado grooves. PITA.

Van #2; if we use “Trofast” Ikea bins, I will make my own bin cabinets as the ikea cabinets just do not make the grade (love the bins) - the cabinets are substandard & I purchased them to save time. The time saving did not work out for me.

Bin Cabinet Fix:
67577
 

·
Registered
Van #2 2021 EXT
Joined
·
5,207 Posts
Discussion Starter · #339 ·
So I am picking away at the more finicky bits of trim. Today I spray insulated the cavity above the slider door opening & custom made/installed a panel to finish that bare part of the van.

67699


67700


Tomorrow once the spray foam fully cures I will cut the excess from the side pillar & the next panel will be on top of that pillar.

Im getting there,,,slowwwwwwlllyyyy
 
321 - 340 of 432 Posts
Top