I’ve been working on the ceiling and planning out what I want to do with it. I think the way to go is wood paneling, possibly cedar since it’s light and works well with moisture…plus it looks beautiful.
The roof of the truck is actually fiberglass on the outer shell and it’s supported by aluminum beams (roughly 9 laterally and 2 length-wise) inside. The beams are sturdy but they may start sagging if a considerable amount of weight is put on them.
Features of the truck that are affected by this:
- Installing the solar panels on the roof
- Installing the paneling inside, on the ceiling
- Installing fans in the ceiling
At first, for the solar panels, I thought about building a roof rack out of steel that would be raised about 5 to 6 inches off the roof. However, this would decrease my “stealth” profile and make it seem more like an RV. I’m sure eventually it will come to that but for now I am aiming for “just a random green delivery truck”. My next thought naturally took me to item #2: the ceiling.
Obviously if the ceiling cannot hold the weight of the panels without eventually sagging, then it most assuredly would not hold 126 sq. ft of wood paneling. Once I reinforce the internal ceiling, it will in-turn, reinforce the roof for the panels.
The Proposed Plan
What I plan on doing is reinforcing the ceiling on each individual crossbeam with two pieces of rebar and wood. Similar to what is done here: https://www.jamestowndistributors.com/userportal/document.do?docId=457
They basically routed a channel on the edge of a 2×12 piece of wood and then glue in some rebar. Once dried, they basically sandwich the beam that needs to be supported. Although my beams aren’t quite as big (appx 2.5 inches in width), I think I can do the same thing with mine.
I’ll keep you posted!