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converting motorhome to mobile studio
Old 28th August 2018
Lives for gear
๐ŸŽง 10 years
converting motorhome to mobile studio

This might be of interest to those contemplating converting a motorhome camper to a mobile studio: Studio SOS: Motorhome Studio | His design brief was: 'keep the motorhome, but add studio'.... so it could be either at short notice !
Old 28th August 2018
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Thomas W. Bethe's Avatar
1 Review written
๐ŸŽง 15 years
Originally Posted by studer58 โžก๏ธ
This might be of interest to those contemplating converting a motorhome camper to a mobile studio: Studio SOS: Motorhome Studio | His design brief was: 'keep the motorhome, but add studio'.... so it could be either at short notice !

Interesting article THANKS for sharing.

I looked into this some years ago.

Couple of problems.

1. You have to have somewhere to store the van/camper. Preferably in a garage which can be locked up. Think expensive equipment and literally very thin aluminum walls plus lots of glass. Also equipment does not like to be extremely hot or cold so you either take out the equipment or heat and cool the garage.

2. Vehicle Maintenance - How and who??? When I did some checking there are very few motor home repair facilities around my location and not every car or truck maintenance shop is capable of servicing a motor home. In my case the nearest shop was 25 miles away.

3. Insurance - Mobile home insurance does not cover a vehicle used for commercial purposes and I would have had to have commercial insurance which is NOT CHEAP.

4. Heating and cooling while on a remote. I live and work in Northern Ohio so we have hot summers (and getting hotter every year) and very cold snowy winter weather in December, January and February. So some form of HVAC is needed which is also quiet.

5 Noise proofing and internal acoustics. Probably the biggest problems to deal with.

6. Driveability of the vehicle in snow and slippery roads. Most RVs are not good in ice and snow and winds. All of which we get in Northern Ohio in the winter.

There are many more things to think about. I drove a remote truck for the local PBS station and the maintenance of the vehicle was taken care of by the TV station as was parking in their garage. The cost of running the vehicle was expensive and so was the insurance. It may seem like a very nice idea (it did to me when I thought about it way back when) but proved to be somewhat daunting decisions when all the facts were known.

Old 28th August 2018 | Show parent
Lives for gear
๐ŸŽง 10 years
Originally Posted by Thomas W. Bethe โžก๏ธ
Interesting article THANKS for sharing.

I looked into this some years ago.

Couple of problems......
Excellent points Tom, and when you delve further into the SOS article the musician/ builder had a stipulation that it be able to return to RV/caravan status whenever hardly a long term 'conversion' to mobile studio, really ? He seemed to only want to record his own keyboard and not a big ask in terms of space required (and I doubt he'd leave the gear in there once he got home, if the motor-home couldn't be securely garaged).

It probably pays to specify what a 'mobile studio' means: is it a sound treated and insulated recording space on the road, perhaps with combined control room (or none, if headphones are used).

Is it a mobile control room only, one you can feed a snake out to in order to save you from monitoring in a broom closet, kitchen, hallway or green room...and perhaps intended to be parked next to a concert hall ?

As you outline in your points, all sorts of considerations around theft prevention, garaging, insurance, acoustic treatment, and % use as mobile home vs studio ...will determine how each individual user approaches such a project.

If individual multitrack capture of sessions or concerts were the aim, with the goal of mixing them later back at base, then you'd get away with little acoustic treatment...maybe none at all if headphone monitoring was used.

I'm sure it's something we've all given thought to at some stage...if your incoming work is of a mobile nature, and it brings in the sort of continual cashflow to justify, it could be a worthy exercise.

If it were me, I'd want to be able to use it to 'get out of town into the wilderness' on occasion...and not face a major gear shifting exercise each time it was used as a studio or monitoring den...which could be avoided with secure garaging. An SD788 or Zoom F8 would be a much lighter and cheaper alternative....
Old 2nd October 2020
Super Moderator
Remoteness's Avatar
๐ŸŽง 15 years
In my opinion, it really matter what type class RV you're considering.

Class A RVs are very doable. Class B and C not as much for a variety of reasons.

Class A motorhomes are built using a very strong, heavy-duty frame. These frames are built on either a commercial bus chassis, or a commercial truck chassis. The 18-wheeler trucks use a similar build.

The big, 22.5 inch wheels support the heavy load of the Class A motorhome. The downside of this class is the fuel economy with about a 8-10 MPG

For studio build out possibilities, the Class A motorhome is the way to go. Plenty of storage space, a roomy interior and its load handling are what defines the Class A motorhome.

Building the CRM in the rear master bedroom area is the way to go. Creating a second CRM or studio space in the front living room area are also a great possibilities.
Old 2nd October 2020 | Show parent
Gear Guru
1 Review written
๐ŸŽง 5 years
everytime i get to read about any type of mobile recording unit, i'm tempted to install one of my desks in my small peugeot 306 (no kidding: i've been considering this for quite some time)...

...but since the car is 20 years old, maybe this isn't the most smart idea?! also worth noting that regulations over here are very strict and i'm having doubts authorities would let me drive my car after conversion into a bonsai mobile studio!

additionally, the current covid crisis brings some broadcasters to the brink of collapsing/there are already some fully equipped cars available for not that much money... - none of them based a mobile home though.

anyway, thx for sharing.
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