Off Grid, Light-Weight Camper for My Tiny Truck





Introduction: Off Grid, Light-Weight Camper for My Tiny Truck

- First off, if you are looking at this and you are yelling in bold "IT'S NOT EVEN FINISHED!!!"  or you are the type that is yelling in bold

  "IT'S NOT EVEN STARTED!!!" I'll yell back at you "I THOUGHT IT WOULD BE BETTER TO UPDATE THIS AS I GO!" So that's what

  I'm doing. Also doing the instructable like this gives me the insentive to finish this thing. 

- I misspell and "misgrammar" (?) lots of things... I'm preemtively sorry.

- I being an Oregon native I speak differently. I might use words like "spendy." This time it's a preemtive "deal with it!"

- This will take awhile, especially with the summer job uncertainty.

- Like most people "I hereby decree that from henceforth" I am in no way mentally, physically, legally, or theologically responsible for 

  anything that happens to you. 

That being said, enjoy (for what it's worth), ask questions, and don't make me angry, please.  


Step 1: The Plans...

Every good project starts off with weeks of planning and obsessing over every detail of building before it even has one part of it made.

     Like I said this will be off grid and in the back of a little half ton toyota. I want the "camper" to still be mobil, but provide food, clean water, and heat so that I won't die if I ever live in this thing. If there is one thing that you guys should take away from this as to use the junk that is lying all over your property from failed projects or stuff that kinda wizard of oz's itself on your property in a strong wind. Don't go to walmart unless you absolutely have to. most people know that most of the stuff there is made in China I think YOU can hold yourself personally responsible for a percentage of the health crisis in Asia and eventually for the death of a human being caused by pollution.... I do.

     Sorry for the tangent. This thing has to be light, like less than a couple hundred pounds, so that means I will be using things like cardboard lumber. I also don't want to have to plug it into any power or water supply, so I will use things like sun jars in the roof and a rainwater filtration system of my own disign, but not massive ugly solar pannels that I can't afford money wise or weight wise. Since I'm a Boy Scout I don't want it to have too much technology besides maybe a smart phone for emergencies and an old ipod for music. Also I want it it to be aesthetically pleasing so that I don't go insane. Wow I sound really selfish withall of those "I wants"

     Food... "A crust eaten in peace is better than a banquet partaken in anxiety." (Aesop) I'm thinking aquaponics here. I'm not planning to eat the fish though, just going to use their waste (poo...) for plant nutrition. I wouldn't want to eat the fish anyway cause I'm thinking of using alge eaters, plus I'm afraid of blood, so that means I'm preatty much destined to be vegan (yay...).

     Other Ideas I'm thinking of is making a wood gasifier to run my truck on as seen here. But instead of making out of metal I'm making it out of ceramic (unless you wan't to weld one up and ship it here for free). I don't know how to weld and I really don't have time to learn so don't try to convince me. This field sink is also a really good idea that I'll probably do a spinoff on.

Just making sure that you know that I am not "prepping" for the end of the world here.

Step 2: Materials (also Known As Debt)

ya... the list will keep building...

I will get exact amounts of stuff you need once each part gets done.


- diagonal, cedar wall planks from the 70's (shown above)

- cardboard... lots of cardboard....

- Wheatpaste

- 5 gallon bucket(s)

- Extra cool Sawyer water bottle filter

- PVC pipe (various sizes)

- Solar garden lights

- Peltier chip (i'll discuss this later)

- mason jars

That's all i can think of for now.

Step 3: The Aquaponics System

The picture above is the plan for the aquaponics system this will hopefully grow stuff, and for a little extra fertilization of the plants (besides the fish poop) I'll add the nutritious ashes from the wood gasifier that will run my truck.



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    please dont take aquaponic advice from this article... everything listed is a nightmare waiting to happen.

    I have never in my life seen an individual with such a poor concept of the English language and the principles of communications. If there was any value in this article it would be lost through his inability to properly communicate. Please spend your time getting an education.

    Now I don't want to push Chinese products but the country from what I've read seems to run on gasifyers. For cooking they burn almost anything and are clean burning also for generating power they are cheap to buy will run your truck. So just reverse engineer one so it's USA. I'm just saying

    I was looking at peltier chips because someone around here did a lunchbox with one and I was thinking of making a yogurt incubator with one, I thought I'd warn you that they weren't terribly powerful for the price. Anyway, sounds like a cool truck camper, hope it works out well for you!

    In step 3, maybe put the water out tube a couple of inches above the bottom so that if there is an unexpected leak, your hard working fishies can live to poop another day. :)

    I love this and will keep checking back to see your progress!

    I love this project too, but now I realize that the weight would be too much for any truck to run on woodgas while still being structurally sound. Also the hole point of this project is too get off the grid but the government makes that impossible to do with registration, insurance, fuel, food, ext. It all takes money, and the government takes money. Now I'm thinking something like a sail cycle (google "whike") and ultra-lite backpacking gear. That would be tax free and insurance free and most of all... Mobile. So I guess this instrucable is more for ideas for people like you who want to give back to nature or lessen your expences and not for people like me who want to get completely away.

    I am looking to do something close the same thing. I want to make a variation of this. I think I want mine to be a shelter.
    Possibably Also think about making the shelter or the gas recycler/greenhouse out of a trailer.

    I'm probably not.going to make this (it's more fore ideas since I don't have the funding). But for Oregon there shouldn't be anything illegal about it as long as it has proper mirrors, lights, ect. And I've contacted the Oregon dmv and they didn't have a problem with it. There is an old guy that lives out of Grants Pass, Oregon (just south of where I live), who lives in a truck like this that also gas a garden on the roof. So why do you think it is illegal?

    Just a small idea, you could also add in a 2 liter lightbulb. This is a 2 liter bottle filled with water and a few tablespoons of bleach and refracts the light enough to amplify it.