About 1980 RV manufacturers took notice of the success of the little Toyota Chinook motor home. They began to create their own versions that included better facilities for living on the road.
The typical 18 foot Toyota motorhome had more to offer than the previous models. It featured an overhead sleeping area above the cab. This was about the size of a standard double bed and would sleep two people comfortably. This left the main area of the camper open.
Usually this model of Toyota camper located the galley at the rear of the living area. This galley or kitchen would include a 3 cubic foot refrigerator, a three burner stove with oven, a sink with a water storage tank and electric pump, and overhead cabinets for storage of food items and cooking equipment.
In the right rear corner of the camper was a bathroom, complete with shower. This tiny bathroom was fully functional and usually not more than about 2 feet square. An RV toilet, and small fold up sink completed the facilities. The floor of the bathroom was also the floor of the shower with the drain located in the center.
An important addition to the camper was small holding tanks for wastewater and sewage as well as a freshwater tank. Although small, these tanks added a lot to the comfort level and utility of the camper.
Along one side of the camper normally behind the driver's seat was a small couch. This sofa would fold out into a bed for additional sleeping capacity. The other side of the living area would normally contain a small dinette or table.
Although very basic, these features made the camper a lot more livable. With care and planning it was entirely possible to take extended trips with this unit. As RV users began to discover all the features and practicality of these little motor homes sales increased. The four-cylinder Toyota chassis was quite economical to drive even if it was not very fast.
As the weight of the camper increased the performance would decrease. Although the manufacturers tried to keep the weight down by using lightweight building methods and materials, these campers were pushing the limits of the capacity of the Toyota half ton pickup. Some critiques began to question the overall safety of these machines with people and their beloveds on board.
It was about this time that the weakness of the half ton pickup chassis began to show. Some people were experiencing failures of the rear axle due to excess weight and overloading. This led to a recall to replace the axle with a sturdier version.
When the RV manufacturers saw a demand for these vehicles, they began to design even larger and longer Toyota motor homes.
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Source by Lee S Mcpherron