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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
This isn't a motorized build, but seems like a good spot for this. I got drawn for a Bear tag this year so I decided to build this thing a couple weeks ago to sleep in for up to 4-days in the western MD mountains. A business associate of mine has an acre of land surrounded by public game lands and he gave me permission to park on his property. The road to get back there is a few miles long, deeply rutted and muddy. The good part is even though im hunting on public land the odds of seeing another hunter are very slim.

I have 2 of these M101A2 trailers that I got off of a gov't auction site 10 + years ago along with a M1028 truck that I pull them around with. These trailers are perfect for getting back there with the ground clearance, so I figured I would sacrifice one and change it to a camping rig.

Thankfully the price of lumber dropped back to normal recently. The 2×4's were notched so they would slide down in the stake pockets. Framed the rest out and used 1/4" plywood on the sides and 1/2" on top. I used a Tyvek type wrap that HD makes over the plywood.
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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
I had a bunch of 1x6 pine planks I snagged at a builders supply auction last year so they were a perfect choice for the exterior walls although they will require routine maintenance. Used a clear sealer on the back and edges of the planks before installing, and then a stain/sealer on the exterior face.
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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Next was a couple RV windows and framing the rear section. I built a door but need to pick up a piano hinge to hang it. The tailgate will fold down to create a shelf when parked. Put some civi trailer lights on today also.
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Next up will be a roof made out of ACM panel left over from a job. Gonna probably add another window to the back. I don't think I'll have the inside done before Bear season, so final completion is down the road. I think I'm going to paint the trailer white to match my Ram. That won't happen till next year. I'm just winging it as I go, so if you have any suggestions throw them out there.
 

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Are those tongue and groove planks? Wondering because I only see fasteners in the middle of each board. Down here those suckers warp of not secured with two fasteners about an inch in from the edges. Maybe you get better pine up there.

You thinking about seating that converts to sleeping, or just sleeping on the floor?
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Are those tongue and groove planks? Wondering because I only see fasteners in the middle of each board. Down here those suckers warp of not secured with two fasteners about an inch in from the edges. Maybe you get better pine up there.

You thinking about seating that converts to sleeping, or just sleeping on the floor?
They are not T&G. They are nailed as well as screwed. They have been drying for over a year so hoping they don't warp. I can easily add more screws if they start to though.

For now I'm going to do a bed out of plywood and 2x4's to get me thru then come up with a permanent solution
 

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Skip more windows, build good storage spaces. You're only sleeping in it, so no need for glass for others to see what you have inside. Being able to vent with one window is more than enough. Have hooks/hangers for jackets and your rifle. Also somewhere to place a lantern or light of some sort.
 

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That's cool. Do you remember the auction site you got those from?
 

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Enjoy the digs and have a good hunting trip. Hopefully you can bring that bear back.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
That's cool. Do you remember the auction site you got those from?
At that time it was govliquidation.com, but they have since lost the contract to a different site. The current websites are ironplanet.com & govplanet.com. I think both sites are the same. Between 2005 & 2010 I bought a bunch of military surplus stuff off of that site. You could get things real cheap because not many people knew about the website. The stuff on there now usually goes for insane money. The trailers they sell now are usually the M1101's which are the newer model that were designed to be hauled by the Humvee's. They have Humvee wheels and tires, and I believe the cargo boxes are bigger. I tried snagging one a few times, but always went for more than I was willing to pay.
 

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You're more ambitious than I am. Looks like you have a 5th gen Ram. Those seat recline pretty much flat. I'd sleep in my truck. lol
 

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Also, have you thought about making a meat pole to hang your bear outside after the hunt? Or do you go straight home after a hunt? Perhaps a large cooler station on the tongue?

I just got back from my hunting trip, bagged a black bear on opening day, and had that sucker hanging in our meat trailer that afternoon. Added a moose into that trailer and another fellow had to build a meat rack to hang his moose in the trees.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Also, have you thought about making a meat pole to hang your bear outside after the hunt? Or do you go straight home after a hunt? Perhaps a large cooler station on the tongue?

I just got back from my hunting trip, bagged a black bear on opening day, and had that sucker hanging in our meat trailer that afternoon. Added a moose into that trailer and another fellow had to build a meat rack to hang his moose in the trees.
I will head home after. I won't have the luxury of a 4-wheeler like I do when I deer hunt, so I will either skin it and quarter it or actually debone it in the field and pack the meat out in plastic bags in my back pack. I have a little contraption that mounts in my receiver hitch of the truck that has a hand winch on it that I use for deer processing. The area where I deer hunt is a CWD zone and you are not supposed to remove the carcass from the area, so I use that little contraption to skin and debone them and throw the meat in a cooler. I don't gut them anymore. I process all the meat into snack sticks and jerky, so no need to be precise on cutting them up. I have never harvested a bear before, so I may try something different in how I process it.
 
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You should gut a bear right away, as they may have worms - you'll want to see that immediately and not let them touch your exterior meat. Their skin cuts easy and depending on the amount of fat, quite easy to skin. You'll be surprised how little meat there is on a bear after you skin and debone them as they are all skin, fur, and fat on the outside of their muscular structure. Having them lifted/hung makes it really easy to pull the skin off, you can basically 'peel' it when the bear is warm.

If you are going to quarter in the field, get the fur off right away and away from where you are butchering; bears are dirty, have lice/maggots at times on the skin/fur, and you don't want that touching your meat. I would cut out the shoulders and backstrap, then the shanks. The ribs are usually not worth the time to debone or even take with you, they have little meat between the bones and is often why bow hunters will go for a gut shot to maximize damage. Also, the ribs often get blown out depending on the shot placement. I popped mine at 135 yards through the lungs with a 7mm RM and there was 8" of ribs blown out the back.

Bear meat has no fat, it is very dense. I have tried cooking briskets, roasts, and shanks on the smoker and no matter what, the meat gets tough and dry as you are supposed to cook bear to 160f to prevent trich. So now, all my bear meat gets cut into cubes for stewing, or roasts and I cook them like pulled pork; my kids love it when we cook them this way and dislike the dried out roasts. My youngest son is a picky eater but devours bear stew like it was candy.

Here's the bear I just brought home last week. He wasn't the biggest, maybe 3-4 years old, but he was in the wrong place at the wrong time. Luckily he was on a steep slope, so I could drag him downhill easily and gut him before taking him back to our camp.

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
When do we get pictures of the inside of the camper?
The inside is just an empty shell at this point. Completion will drag out a little, but I will keep adding to the thread as I get things done.

Picked up some hardware items on the way home so I could hang the door and get the tailgate hanging at 90-degrees as a work/cooking surface. Next up is fabbing and installing the ACM panels on the roof, a couple wood trim pieces on the back, making some door stops around the inside of the door, making a bedframe, and pulling the hubs to make sure the axles are lubed up.
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