Departure Angle

Travel with our family

Join us as we explore the world in our carbon-neutral, 4x4 expedition vehicle called The EcoRoamer. We are happy to share our travel adventures, family memories and homeschooling experiences as we journey down the road less traveled.

Departure Angle


About 3 weeks ago I managed to get out to Sturgis, to work on the truck and meet with the guys for some updates.

Those of you who live / have visited Indiand/Michigan in January will not be surprised to hear that it was -17’F and looked like this:

I can’t believe I left a life in the tropics for this!

However, we did get some good work accomplished, and I thought you guys might be interested in some of it…


If you were at the ExPo trip to the U.P. in August, you will have noticed that our departure angle was less than fantastic due to the rear stair entrance. A great example of something looking better on AutoCAD than in real life.

So, we cut it off, shortened it up and remounted it with great effect:



We also built out the box to include storage cubbies for boots and things behind the riser on each step. It was dead space that now has a purpose. Almost every inch on the truck now suits at least TWO different purposes, some of them 3 or 4.

Here’s an older picture of the stairs:


The other thing we learned in the U.P. was how prone the Seitz acrylic windows are to get scratched up my the foliage along the trails. We had mounted the windows recessed before, but it was not enough.

In order to preserve the windows a little, and to add to our ‘cargo truck’ transformers camougflage, we added aluminum shutter flaps to all of the windows. These will eventually be painted to match the rest of the body and should blend in very nicely.

Special thanks to David, Iris & Travis Hammond and their Mercedes truck from Germany for the inspiration for those!

Now that our cargo truck disguise is almost complete we’ve been joking around about painting fake business names on the side of the truck. While this should make the border guards less likely to believe that “we’re a motorhome, not commercial”, it will have the benefit of making the average yabbo completely ignore us.

We were trying to think of the most universal names we could come up with, which would appeal to the largest group of ‘baddies’. Something like:

“Mustafa Garcia’s Halal Meat Supply”

“Tan Teck Kiang Furniture Company” (written in Chinese & English)
(completely joking of course…)

Now the work begins on the interior. We’ve already finalized some of the designs for:

The stairs / storage / entrance to tent:

(with deference to Unicat & Host Campers for their inspiration on those)

…and the dinette / chest freezer / clothing chest-of-drawers:

These are now being built by Matt Sutter and his great guys at Michiana Laminates, out of Plyboo (bamboo wood boards) and SierraPine’s Medex (recycled material MDF boards).

Stay tuned for more updates…


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