OK you math wizards--I dare ya! - Fiberglass RV


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Old 09-25-2009, 10:23 PM   #1
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Ok, DH and I had a "discussion" about whether replacing the cabinet doors would REALLY make that much of a weight savings. I say yes, he says no. I can't find a post where anyone has actually weighed the darn things, but I did find the following equation. I have not measured the doors in the Pacer yet, but someone out there with their camper on hand could do some measuring and math. (I have the 2 cabinets over the sink, one door below the sink, 2 longer doors on the overhead storage front and back, the portapotti door and the closet door.)


My wittle brain is fried! Go for it!!

QUOTE FOLLOWS:

Based on what I know given the information provided by the manufacture of the MDF, a piece of mdf that is 12" x 12" x 3/4" weights in around 3 lbs.

So, based on that weight scale and breaking it down to the square inch, I use the following to determine the overall weight from a given size enclosure:

12" x 12" x 3/4" MDF = 3lbs or 48 oz.

48 oz. 144 sq.in. = .33 oz. per 1" x 1" x 3/4" MDF

So, add up the total amount of sq.in. of mdf used to build the box, then take that total and multiply by .33 oz = total weight of enclosure in ounces and divide by 16 oz. = total weight of enclosure in pounds.

Example:

Enclosure Size - 36" w x 12" h x 12" d = 2016 sq.in. 3/4" MDF

2016 sq.in. x .33 oz. = 665.28 oz. 16 oz. = 41.58 lbs.

The same method of calculation can be applied to other materials provided that you know what the weight of the material is per square foot.
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Old 09-25-2009, 10:52 PM   #2
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Door for door, you will see significant weight savings by getting rid of the MDF, but there won't be any appreciable weight savings as far as the camper goes. That being said, the only real effects will be appreciated outside of the weight savings ie: appearance, less strain on cabinets and hardware, less prone to swelling, and stronger in general.

Cost, and time spent making the doors are about the only real reasons to not make them.

p.s. personally, I'd leave the MDF because they don't bother me.
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Old 09-25-2009, 10:56 PM   #3
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My ex closet door retrieved from the depths of the garage for information purposes weighs 9.2 lbs.

I know the cherry doors dad made for me weigh much less, how much I don't know. Considering I have the second heaviest 13 footer ever weighed I guess they didn't make much difference.
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Old 09-25-2009, 11:02 PM   #4
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Thanks Liz and Paul--- now we're getting somewhere! If it's not really going to make a difference in the actual weight I'm towing, I could just paint the doors and leave em!

Can't wait to hear other opinions!
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Old 09-26-2009, 12:01 AM   #5
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That's a valid point. I did weigh my old and new doors as they went in. I've forgotten the exact numbers since, but remember the new doors were 50-60% of the weight of the originals. So replacing all the doors on my kitchen cabinets (there are 12 of them) probably saved around 12 pounds of weight.

On their own that's not a lot of weight savings, but it adds up if you replace all the high-weight particle/MDF board in your trailer with lighter weight materials. Replacing our MDF dinette table with one made out of birch ply we saved 10+ pounds (and made it easier to move around). Replacing our bathroom door ten pounds more. Hatch covers . . . the removable shelf under the microwave and the bottom of the big cabinet in the kitchenette. It adds up after a bit and is a valuable weight savings you can use for other stuff when you're towing close to your limit. And it's not all that expensive to do, either.

To me, however, the weight savings alone are not worth it unless it also makes our trailer nicer. The old cabinet doors were ugly, the new ones are nice. Our new dinette looks nicer and slides back and forth so it's easier to get in and out of the dinette. The new "privacy room" door not only looks nicer, it has a built-in full-length mirror and still weighs 10 pounds less than the original.
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Old 09-26-2009, 12:55 AM   #6
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Another thought is that while something like 40# may not be much in terms of overall weight, if you are towing at or near your vehicle's limit, and you think of that 40# in terms of personal stuff that you could bring or not bring -- well, that's a 40# I wouldn't want to leave at home.

Also, once you have the mindset, you may find it encourages you to lighten up in other ways too (as Peter mentioned, hatch lids, plus flooring and etc.)

But yeah, you have to look at it for your particular situation
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Old 09-26-2009, 07:05 AM   #7
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Quote:
Another thought is that while something like 40# may not be much in terms of overall weight, if you are towing at or near your vehicle's limit, and you think of that 40# in terms of personal stuff that you could bring or not bring -- well, that's a 40# I wouldn't want to leave at home.

Also, once you have the mindset, you may find it encourages you to lighten up in other ways too (as Peter mentioned, hatch lids, plus flooring and etc.)

But yeah, you have to look at it for your particular situation

You betcha, and if a case of wine is around 39 lbs, well lookee there!
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Old 09-26-2009, 08:07 AM   #8
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Very good points! I woke up thinking the same thing: "20 pounds is 20 pounds---I could bring 20 more pounds of potato chips (JK )
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Old 09-26-2009, 10:30 AM   #9
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Quote:
Very good points! I woke up thinking the same thing: "20 pounds is 20 pounds---I could bring 20 more pounds of potato chips (JK )
That would be my choice!
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Old 09-26-2009, 11:09 AM   #10
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And if a "light weight" mouse were to hitch a ride, imagine how happy he would be!
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Old 09-26-2009, 11:45 AM   #11
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If you are trying to calculate the weight it might be appropriate to use values for the materials you will use. IMHO 3/4" MDF is much more than would be required for a door.
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Old 09-26-2009, 12:20 PM   #12
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Well, I'm about 8000 lbs under my current TV rating when I'm pullin the 13, so I guess I could always bring extra wine and potato chips for PJ and Vickie if needed.
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Old 09-26-2009, 02:13 PM   #13
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Well, I'm about 8000 lbs under my current TV rating when I'm pullin the 13, so I guess I could always bring extra wine and potato chips for PJ and Vickie if needed.
If you need more weight Greg my wife can help. She can add about 2k lbs of stuff in any trailer.
I don't want to second guess her or would I ever question it but do you really "need" two croc pots?
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Old 09-26-2009, 04:53 PM   #14
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QUOTE FOLLOWS:


Example:

Enclosure Size - 36" w x 12" h x 12" d = 2016 sq.in. 3/4" MDF
Just curious .....is your cabinet really a complete box? I got your answer assuming four 12 x 36 "sides" and two 12 x12 ends. Our Scamp uses the existing wall and ceiling as the rear and top of the cabinet, which would then mean only two of the 12 x 36 panels to count. I've never had the pleasure of checking out a Perris Pacer, so maybe your cabinets do use six panels each. That would certainly add up.

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