Keystone Remodel


Senior Member
Feb 22, 2019
Well since I am temporarily unemployed and it is really nice outside time to start a remodel! I am coming up on 1 year of owning the Keystone. While it is mostly original form 86 it was a little rough and needed some love. The fridge, heater, and side cabinets had been removed so rebuilding those areas are the main focus.



Goals of the build are:
- Light, modular, with lots of storage options
- Adding a diesel heater
- Adding parter stove (able to cook inside and outside) or putting the stove/oven combo back
- New floor
- Figuring out a way to keep the couch in one piece while driving
- Upgrading the electric system
- Headliner / roof lining



Since I have loads of free time right now, but limited income, I think my priority is going to be installing a new floor. Got a few hours of scrapping glue off from the old vinyl floor and carpeted sides!
m.r.h. welcome to the build/renovation world!

If I may quote Scott Brady from over on Expedition Portal, "Spend your money on your travels, not on your equipment". You may have noticed on my build, I also wanted the option to cook both inside and outside so I have a Primus Profile stove (Craigslist new $50). A Partner stove retails around $300? Since my idea of "four seasons" camping includes Texas and not the snow of my home state of Colorado, I will be using a Mr. Heater Buddy to take the chill off. (Craigslist used $40). Depending on where and when you anticipate using a heater may make the diesel heater a good choice. My bottom line would echo Scott Brady, it is some times tempting to buy the cool next best greatest innovation that the crowd is buying, but always keep in mind what the options are and what they cost.

I try to balance spending money on the travel and equipment. I already have loads of gear so won't really be buying anything new. The Partner stove is part of my river kitchen so it will do double duty. A heater won't get used much but will motivate getting out more in the winter. I got a cheap Chinese diesel heater off amazon ($150). Don't anticipate using it that much but it gets cold in Oregon.

Boonie I am really excited to see how your build turns out!
Spend a day with my heat gun scraping old glue off the floor spent a few hours painting the floor to cover up the exposed wood.

Huge sigh of relieve to have no real major floor damage. A few weird spots from who ever had modified the the floor pack but it should be good to go. Trying to decide what color and type of flooring to go with. Probably some grey laminate or something. Once things are dry it will just be a couple yoga mats to keep things clean.

Yes the 4 burner with oven is luxury living right there. I wish it didn't work so I could justify scraping it. It takes up lots of storage space, but is great for making cookies and cake while on the move. We will see what I end up doing with it.
Do what everybody else does. Use the oven for storage space.

Friend of mine keeps a couple dishpans in the oven with odds & ends in them. Pull the dish pans out when you have to use the oven.

Don't forget to turn the pilot off when done. Friend forgot once. It melted one of his dish pans.
Trying to decide what flooring to use. Anyone have opinions on vinyl vs laminate vs plank vs glue down stuff?


Has mid-grade 1/8" thick vinyl plank in my Hawk. It kept coming apart and heat/cold distorted it.

Current PUMA build use 1/2" fibreglass glued to the floor with 1/2" subflooring glued to it, and luxury grade vinyl sheet on top, stuck to the subfloor on 2 sides with double sided tape, and floating on the other edges to it can expand/contract.
I decided to go with some vinyl stick together planks from TrafficMaster. Adding trim and L-tracks (this is how I am going to reinstall the couch so I can take it out with some ease to have more hauling space when not camping) are the next steps. Once those are in the couch will go back in. Hopefully those pieces arrive this week.


Starting to shop for the electrical upgrade. Need to add a converter/charger, 12 volt fuse box, and an inverter. I have been reading and watching tons about 12 volt systems but am still a tiny bit confused. I have been looking for a good wiring diagram but cannot see to find one that isn't really confusing.
looking good! What do you want to know about a 12V system? What is the inverter for? Knowing that will help plan the rest of the system. How many independent circuits do you want? I personally dislike the stock system where the fan and lights are on the same fuse, but changing that is major work for most folks.

I'm finishing up my build, and it is just about time to create the electrical drawings and such...
I don't have a bunch of electric needs right now. Just lights, fan, heater, USB charging ports, and maybe a small electric water pump. my 100AH batter doesn't get that much use as 80% of use is the LED lights. Would like the option of 110v to charger a lap top or something small that isn't 12 volt. I live in my camper most of the summer and can stay plugged into shore power really easy so I have been using a small fan at night. I have an inverter already so thought it might be nice for that as well.

With the uncertainty of paid work in the future I am trying to keep my budget low. However I would rather spend a little extra money for something that is going to work for the long term. Planning on adding solar down the road, between 100 and 200w, so want to prep for adding that with "ease" when it happens. Fingers crossed for some excellent sales!


Here is my draft diagram for now. Need to add in a kill switch, monitor, and isolator. Probably something else missing as well.
Good basic diagram. The kill switch isn't super necessary, and could be conjoined with a small breaker that you can pull if you want to kill all power. If you already have an inverter big enough, I would buy a separate charger, like the NOCO brand. I had a 7200 in my Hawk (7A) that could keep up with most loads I put on it, but was "undersized" if I wanted to recharge my 275AH batteries in a day. I have a NOCO 26000 now that does 26A.

I don't know that you need an AC breaker box if you are not running AC power directly to AC plugs in your camper. If you are JUST going to the battery charger, you should be ok without an AC panel. That said, I don't know what the RV Electrical code is in your region.

I notice you don't show any connection to the truck for charging while driving. If you are considering that, I'd look at one of the newer units that does DC/DC conversion, plus Solar MPPT all in one box. Renogy has one, as does Victron and CTEK and maybe RedArc?

You still need a true battery monitor. If you like Victron, they make a very good one. Will Prouse reviewed an inexpensive knockoff a while back that costs way less.
Here is what I am starting with. AC breaker box with what I assume is a 12v fuse "box."


Since the AC breaker box was already there I thought I would just keep it in the system. Also would be nice to have the ability to use my AC plugs. So out of the breaker box would be a converter/charger? Seems like Iota is what most use. To run those plugs when not plugged into shore power my camper came with an older looking (still in original packaging) 1000W modified sine wave dc to ac power inverter.

I had been charging my batter with my NOCO 3500(now called Genius5). It has been working great to keep camper and motorcycle batteries charged up. Thought about installing this in the camper but like to have it mobile to charger other things.

A DC/DC conversion plus a solar MPPT wasn't really on my radar. Less boxes that control things the better! To be clear I could have one of those and add a solar panel later? My truck battery would charger my camper battery, but do I need an isolator switch or is that build it? Need to check to make sure my alternator is up to snuff.

To help me think through things and learn here is an updated basic diagram.


Going to have to do more research in a nice middle ground battery monitor I think. Cheap knocks offs make me nervous when using them in something that gets a lot of use. I did go with a knock off diesel heater so we will see how that turns out.
NOCO has an inexpensive dongle that you can wire permanently to you batteries, and plug the other end into your charger when you need to. Keeps it portable.

I'd consider wiring some of your AC plug to shore power via the breaker box, and some to the inverter for use on battery only. That way you can choose where your AC comes from. Converting AC to DC back to AC again is less than efficient.

Otherwise, it looks like a good rough diagram.
I think my charger came with that dongle, will have to take a look in the box tonight.

Wiring some AC for shore and the others via an inverter is a good idea. I am still debating weather I need any AC power. After some thought I may just put my efforts into into the 12v system and add solar now. My AC needs can easily be met for the longer term via an extension cord.

But I am going to finish the trim on the flooring do some prep work for putting the couch and such back in. Going to install the couch via L-Track with these attachment pieces (hopefully they arrive early next week). If all goes well I should be able to have seating that can be taken out with "ease."
Went to the store for some supplies. Got some screws and L-brackets to so I could finish the install of the couch on the L-track system. They were low on trim so I decided to save that or another day.

Got the L-Track and couch all installed. Seems to work just how I was hoping and planning. Still just need a little detail work, but that requires another trip to the store which I will save for another day.


Now that the couch is back in I am thinking and working through how to attach my cushions in a way that they stay in place while driving, but also can convert into a bed. Any thoughts out there?



Right now one piece just sits half on legs, half on the couch frame. The other piece just sits on the couch frame and the other part on the side of the camper.
Unless your truck has a "smart" alternator a DC-DC charger is not necessary, an VCR/ACR is sufficient and may be a bit cheaper.

I use a Blue Sea 7622 Ml-ACR between our 1993 Dodge and the battery bank in our 2007 FWC Keystone. However, charging from the truck alternator is seldom required because we sized our solar system reasonably to our needs, 200 W solar with 220 Ah battery bank.

If the solar system were 300 W - 350 W I am confident we would never need a charge from the alternator or shore power.
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