Propane Tank Spacing question - Fiberglass RV


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Old 01-29-2018, 06:56 AM   #1
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Propane Tank Spacing question

Hi All,

Hope spring camping is on your minds!! We are trying to get ready!!

I had 2 bars welded to hold the bottles on the tongue, but it seems the bottom of the bottles want to slide outwards during travels. The propane bottle cover keeps them from sliding too far, but I'd like to add a little brace to hold them exactly in position instead of relying on the cover.

Quick question, does anybody know the distance of the base of the propane tank bottom ring spacing? Attached is a picture of the dimension I am looking for.

Thanks very much in advance!!
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tankbase.JPG  
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Old 01-29-2018, 08:15 AM   #2
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Without removing my bottles it looks like around 22 inches.
I moved them rearward giving me room to mount my eu2000i generator between the jack and bottles.

Another Joe in Ohio
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Old 01-29-2018, 09:30 AM   #3
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Thanks Joe - I really appreciate that! I'll set them there and see how the cover fits. I figured there must be a standard.

Then I'll bolt on a little stop on the frame to hold them in place better.

Thanks again!!
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Old 01-29-2018, 09:35 AM   #4
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Joe.
Do you not have the ready rod threaded into the Center hole with the steel grab bar for the tanks?
The ready rod with this bar will hold it rock solid and also provides mounting for the regulator.
Just saying.
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Old 01-29-2018, 09:59 AM   #5
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Hi Tony,

I sure do! I use that rod, and the regulator mount, and the big wing nut. I've cranked her down hard and even added a second nut as a lock nut. But for some reason the bottoms of the bottles move side to side, mainly outwards. I don't use the tray in the pic above - I just have 2 L channels, the the bottle rings sit on their front and rear edges. Pic below of my L channels.
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Old 01-29-2018, 10:09 AM   #6
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Joe.
I just measured the inside of my propane bottle cover and it's 27". So the wide part of the bottles should be an inch or two less. From there you should be able to calculate the measurement for the bottom rims.

The notches on the bar between the tanks gives you some leeway.

I've found the bottles need to be setting flat as in no rocking before tightening the wing nut on the threaded shaft makes them rock steady.

It looks like your frame channel pieces are 4", as you know Casita uses 3" and they flex too much to my thinking so I beefed them up.




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Old 01-29-2018, 10:24 AM   #7
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Joe. Could you get one of those tank deck plates welded to your A Frame?
Basically lose the angle iron pieces and have the oval plate positioned and welded to the frame. Then there is no movement.
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Old 01-29-2018, 10:47 AM   #8
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I use the flat oval ring base plate and the bottles still want to move around on the bottom. To solve that problem, At the mid part of the radius I drilled a hole in the bottom base plate to line up with the hole in the bottom ring of the propane bottle so I can put a extended shank master pad lock through the bottle ring and put the bottle down on the base plate and lock the lock. One on each side and locks keyed the same. This keeps the bottle in place during travel with the top clamp and keeps the bottles from wandering off while I am away.
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Old 01-29-2018, 10:53 AM   #9
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lower steel grab bar....

Great ideas! I did google the Casita frame and I see the side brackets I failed to incorporate into the design when I had this welded up....uugggg. Your thought and ideas got my brain going.

I imitated the Casita style frame mount because it does not use the pan. This I thought would be less prone to water collection, and rust. It would also leave the bottom open. I run my propane hose up thru the bottom to my quick disconnect.

So since I paid to have those welded on, I would like to stick with that design. And I agree I don't want to drill into the frame for weakening.

I'm thinking of 2 methods that may work leaving a frame setup, and not making a trip back to the weld shop.

1) is to drill and bolt another L channel front to back, but have the drilled holes located on the smaller side to side channels, not the main frame. These holes should be ok because the egg didn't even have those side to side braces in the first place. I added them.

2) is to make a 2nd grab bar on the bottom. It would be held in position mounted on the center rod, and its slots could grab the lower tank rings. Same setup as the top but upside down. I would add lock washers and even a second jamb nut just to keep her safely on.

I'm thinking maybe option 2.... Thanks everybody for your ideas and help! They got the ol mind going and helped a lot!
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Old 01-29-2018, 11:00 AM   #10
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Originally Posted by JWScarab View Post
Hi All,

Hope spring camping is on your minds!! We are trying to get ready!!

I had 2 bars welded to hold the bottles on the tongue, but it seems the bottom of the bottles want to slide outwards during travels. The propane bottle cover keeps them from sliding too far, but I'd like to add a little brace to hold them exactly in position instead of relying on the cover.

Quick question, does anybody know the distance of the base of the propane tank bottom ring spacing? Attached is a picture of the dimension I am looking for.

Thanks very much in advance!!
The ID of my propane tray is 23 1/4". Of course, the bottles can be set closer to each other since the top hold down bracket has various slots in it to fit the bottles. So you could set your bottles in the lower tray with an OD minimum of about 22" if needed. The 20 lb and 30 lb bottles have the same overall OD with just a height difference. Be sure to use the actual OD of the bottles when making the cover. If you want to switch from 20 lb to 30 lb some day, all you need is a 6" longer threaded rod.
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Old 01-29-2018, 11:22 AM   #11
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From an old Mechanical Engineer: Your design is prone to the behavior you described, because the top bar loads the tanks NOT above those two (front and back) contact points which are on the front rail and the back rail. Vibration while driving overcomes friction, which is the only thing keeping them in place now.

You could simply tie the bases of the two tanks together so they cannot move away from each other. A chain, a strap, or a metal link between them would accomplish this.

Or, have two bars (L-shaped) added, front to back, on the outside or each, to stop the tanks from moving toward the outside. Maybe four would be better, so the bottom of each tank is supported and captured at the four points (front, back, left, right).

With your 1) and 2) ideas, you are on the right track.
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Old 01-29-2018, 12:45 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by JWScarab View Post
Hi Tony,

I sure do! I use that rod, and the regulator mount, and the big wing nut. I've cranked her down hard and even added a second nut as a lock nut. But for some reason the bottoms of the bottles move side to side, mainly outwards. I don't use the tray in the pic above - I just have 2 L channels, the the bottle rings sit on their front and rear edges. Pic below of my L channels.
Mark where your tanks sit and weld a short piece of angle between the existing front & rear brackets on each side of the tanks, done.
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