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Old 10-24-2020, 04:28 PM   #1
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Default Advanced RV B-Box RV

There is talk of European cab-chassis designs desirable that are no wider or higher than vans that are not here in America. ARV thinks they have an answer to that in the B-Box, an entirely new cab-chassis design that is no wider or taller (under 10 ft) of its sprinter van but with a ceiling height of 80" instead of 75" and wider inside along with straight up walls. You will see it is an all-weather RV. They have a recycle water system. There are several other innovations to numerous to mention that are in the 40 minute YouTube video. BTW, I make a very brief cameo appearance at the 39 minute mark with my floor plan for Mies when they talk about customer driven development.

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Old 10-24-2020, 05:17 PM   #2
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Very nice product as expected from ARV. Composite camper box built from panels supplied by Total Composites in BC. If Mercedes would supply 4wd cab chassis in North America this product would have a market for expedition vehicle buyers in addition to the RV market.
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Old 10-24-2020, 10:34 PM   #3
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There is talk of European cab-chassis designs desirable that are no wider or higher than vans that are not here in America. ARV thinks they have an answer to that in the B-Box, an entirely new cab-chassis design that is no wider or taller (under 10 ft) of its sprinter van but with a ceiling height of 80" instead of 75" and wider inside along with straight up walls. You will see it is an all-weather RV. They have a recycle water system. There are several other innovations to numerous to mention that are in the 40 minute YouTube video. BTW, I make a very brief cameo appearance at the 39 minute mark with my floor plan for Mies when they talk about customer driven development.

Thanks for this posting. ARV is very, very innovated! They have great products and service. It is really great to see what they come up with next!
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Old 10-25-2020, 03:58 PM   #4
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Heh. Sounds like putting the compressor and condenser underneath the chassis is no longer such a terrible idea.

They also finally seem to be coming around on combined black/gray tanks, sort of.
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Old 10-25-2020, 06:34 PM   #5
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If you studied it closely, the black and grey tank equalization is an option mostly for extended boondock stays or adjusting how much grey and black tank water you use in your habits. The point is and it was put out there, in a Sprinter (or probably any other van or cab/chassis) they could not fit a single tank of 54 gallons in. It is a better solution than the bladder grey and blank tank occupying the same space or just a single tank as I mentioned couldn't get near the capacity.

I don't know the details of it but with equalization the black tank solids I think would still mostly settle to the bottom of the tank and you can still control it with valve closings so you could still macerate the blank tank first and follow up with cleaner grey tank water to flush out valves and hoses. I still like flushing out the system with twice the gallons of mostly soapy water.
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Old 10-25-2020, 07:32 PM   #6
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If you studied it closely, the black and grey tank equalization is an option mostly for extended boondock stays or adjusting how much grey and black tank water you use in your habits. The point is and it was put out there, in a Sprinter (or probably any other van or cab/chassis) they could not fit a single tank of 54 gallons in. It is a better solution than the bladder grey and blank tank occupying the same space
What don't you like about the bladders? I am considering them and have an open mind. What shouldn't I like?
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or just a single tank as I mentioned couldn't get near the capacity.
I don't know if you can get 54 gallons in a Sprinter or not. But, as I have explained, you can certainly fit more in a given contiguous space with a single tank than in two tanks. This is obvious.

I think what they did in this van is a fine idea, especially if it helps people start to get over this "I need two tanks" silliness.
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Old 10-25-2020, 09:58 PM   #7
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What don't you like about the bladders? I am considering them and have an open mind. What shouldn't I like?

I don't know if you can get 54 gallons in a Sprinter or not. But, as I have explained, you can certainly fit more in a given contiguous space with a single tank than in two tanks. This is obvious.

I think what they did in this van is a fine idea, especially if it helps people start to get over this "I need two tanks" silliness.
The bladders occupy the same space so it is an either/or situation. If you expand the grey water contents then you reduce to black water contents, or vice versa and you have no control as I mentioned with valves and two tanks.

You also have to consider placement of your toilet in a van. Most are designed to dump straight down into a tank. That limits your design options and placement. ARV gets 46 gallons (18.5 black and 27.5 grey) on the driver's side and 40 gallons of water on the passenger side in a Sprinter van and that is pretty much maxed out with custom designed tanks from underside inspection of my van. I don't think anyone has built more capacity in a Sprinter van.

My Mies ARV design has the toilet behind the back axle further complicating the design. That's why most of the 144 Sprinter vans in that situation have opted for composting or cassette toilets because you can't get over the back axle to a tank between the wheels. I didn't like either solution so have opted for a macerating toilet with a smaller diameter sewer that doesn't depend on gravity in a false floor or chase to get back over the axle where the tank capacity is. I could do the two tank equalizing I suppose. I didn't know about it until this video, but historically I probably don't need to. I still appreciate the flushing and cleaning action of soapy grey water after black water to keep any crud buildup from happening.
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Old 10-25-2020, 11:46 PM   #8
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The B-Box looks quite interesting and impressive overall, though I want a much better look at the forward lounge with both front seats reversed. I got the impression from the video that the enclosed space behind the driver's seat may be so tight that reversing that seat may not be a useful thing to do.

My one concern overall is that it looks so much like a delivery truck, but if the box is properly wrapped / painted or whatever, it may look better.
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Old 10-26-2020, 01:47 AM   #9
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Interesting concept, but, very high on my list of design objectives for an RV are windows, more is better to enjoy being out instead feeling of being locked in a cage. A frameless design is very limited in this regard. RV industry standard construction of aluminum frame with fiberglass/rigid foam laminated walls has practically no limits in windows and in fact aluminum framed composite RVs are well proven to take road abuses.

A lot of innovation in this C, great to have it but no so great if failures gets you stuck somewhere in the boonies.
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Old 10-26-2020, 04:16 AM   #10
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The B-Box looks quite interesting and impressive overall, though I want a much better look at the forward lounge with both front seats reversed. I got the impression from the video that the enclosed space behind the driver's seat may be so tight that reversing that seat may not be a useful thing to do.

My one concern overall is that it looks so much like a delivery truck, but if the box is properly wrapped / painted or whatever, it may look better.
I'm not all versed on Class C's which this is make no mistake about it, but do Class C's reverse cab seats like Class B's?

Being a Class C, I think all of them are essentially ugly. This is a prototype. I don't know if it will be or can be refined in looks. It is a box.
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Old 10-26-2020, 04:29 AM   #11
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Interesting concept, but, very high on my list of design objectives for an RV are windows, more is better to enjoy being out instead feeling of being locked in a cage. A frameless design is very limited in this regard. RV industry standard construction of aluminum frame with fiberglass/rigid foam laminated walls has practically no limits in windows and in fact aluminum framed composite RVs are well proven to take road abuses.

A lot of innovation in this C, great to have it but no so great if failures gets you stuck somewhere in the boonies.
Well as I said this is a Class C and not a surround window van or even a windowed school bus. Most C's don't have wrap around windows and those MAN rugged RV's even less. I'm with you though. Class B's should have as much window as possible just to feel bigger and less confined though I know of most DIY vans usually don't start out that way like yours.

What parts of it do you recognize as potentially a failure if getting stuck in the boonies? Besides being a Sprinter of course which many people have expressed fears. They said they are considering Fords as well with this concept as they said because it was all spurred because they couldn't get van chassis which I am acutely aware of in my many delays.
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Old 10-26-2020, 04:46 AM   #12
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Very nice product as expected from ARV. Composite camper box built from panels supplied by Total Composites in BC. If Mercedes would supply 4wd cab chassis in North America this product would have a market for expedition vehicle buyers in addition to the RV market.
Greg, I didn't realize MB didn't supply 4wd cab chassis in North America. It would make sense if this B-Box did with all that they put into it to go off grid. I guess I wasn't thinking about it or concerned as I committed to 2WD on my next short 144 Sprinter with all season off-grid capability because I have no interest to go off-road in a van with such an investment. That's pretty much counter with many of the 144 Sprinter builds as popularized by Winnebago Revel. Heck, I even try to avoid gravel roads when I can.
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Old 10-26-2020, 03:01 PM   #13
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Is the Mercedes chassis so rigid that it will not transmit torsion to the box? Most expedition overland rigs have three point mounting systems. This unit does not. Is that a potential problem?
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Old 10-26-2020, 03:08 PM   #14
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Is the Mercedes chassis so rigid that it will not transmit torsion to the box? Most expedition overland rigs have three point mounting systems. This unit does not. Is that a potential problem?

I would agree that might be an issue, but add to it that the dual rear wheels will also be a big downside for anything that would really be considered "offroad" so may be less prone to the twisting.
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Old 10-26-2020, 05:30 PM   #15
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Well as I said this is a Class C and not a surround window van or even a windowed school bus. Most C's don't have wrap around windows and those MAN rugged RV's even less. I'm with you though. Class B's should have as much window as possible just to feel bigger and less confined though I know of most DIY vans usually don't start out that way like yours.

What parts of it do you recognize as potentially a failure if getting stuck in the boonies? Besides being a Sprinter of course which many people have expressed fears. They said they are considering Fords as well with this concept as they said because it was all spurred because they couldn't get van chassis which I am acutely aware of in my many delays.
I would not worry about ARV workmanship, clean wiring, well layout plumbing etc. should not give much problems. But itís complexity in heating, shower reclaimed water, touchscreen remote control repairability is likely above the paygrade of an average RV technician.
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Old 10-27-2020, 01:10 AM   #16
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I would not worry about ARV workmanship, clean wiring, well layout plumbing etc. should not give much problems. But itís complexity in heating, shower reclaimed water, touchscreen remote control repairability is likely above the paygrade of an average RV technician.

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I would not worry about ARV workmanship, clean wiring, well layout plumbing etc. should not give much problems. But itís complexity in heating, shower reclaimed water, touchscreen remote control repairability is likely above the paygrade of an average RV technician.

Iím really not worried about workmanship and innovation. ARV is top notch for that. Iím sure theyíve built 4x4 MB vans that meet or exceed the capabilities of other lesser B van offerings. Iím just concerned that this really is a Class C and the box could be subjected to torsion loads not present in a van. An Earthcruiser has a similar footprint but its configuration addresses the torque loading.

That said, I really like the design, since itís so similar to those found in VW (and others) based 4x4 offerings in Europe. Europeans load theirs on ships and traveling the globe in those. I have to think they confine their explorations to paved and unpaved roads. Since many seem to travel alone as singles or couples, I doubt they put their rigs in danger of structural failure.

Iím just parsing (admittedly) the term off-road.
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Old 10-27-2020, 03:59 AM   #17
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Very nice product as expected from ARV. Composite camper box built from panels supplied by Total Composites in BC. If Mercedes would supply 4wd cab chassis in North America this product would have a market for expedition vehicle buyers in addition to the RV market.
In the video Mike did say they would build this B-box on Ford Transit vans. Ford offers Transit AWD cab chassis and cutaway vehicles with single rear wheels.

https://www.ford.com/commercial-trucks/transit-chassis/

That could make an interesting expedition vehicle with better off road performance than a RWD Sprinter.
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Old 10-27-2020, 05:02 PM   #18
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I think the shell is approx $20K
ref:https://totalcomposites.com/
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Old 10-27-2020, 05:57 PM   #19
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It looks nice. I just don't understand who will be their projected market? If it is the current Leisure Travel market then it will be like their current B competition with other B upfitters and they should do very well. If it is more of an expedition crowd, then I don't see it making big inroads. It would need to be more rugged. I have started to look more at some of these to replace my B. I like the simplicity and rugged builds of the pop-up box on a flatbed truck like the Nimble, Overland Explorer HBE and the description of the upcoming EarthCruiser Terranova. Having a domestic gasser truck that can be fixed most anywhere in the US is a big plus. The add-ons like treated wash water for reuse could be something that I could get use to using. The electrical systems on these are always good but so has the AdvanceRV. If AdvancedRV did go expedition mode, it would be great to start having such an option further east.
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Old 10-27-2020, 06:23 PM   #20
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In the video Mike did say they would build this B-box on Ford Transit vans. Ford offers Transit AWD cab chassis and cutaway vehicles with single rear wheels.

https://www.ford.com/commercial-trucks/transit-chassis/

That could make an interesting expedition vehicle with better off road performance than a RWD Sprinter.

How much gross capacity can Ford get with the single wheel rears? Do they use a super single setup?
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