Meet the Most Awesome Motorhome Ever!

1954 Chevrolet COE Tourliner 1 photo
Photo: Hot Rod
Do you like classic vehicles? Do you like trucks? Do you like custom projects? Do you like motorhomes? Well, how about something that's a little bit of everything?
Russ Moen built a one-of-a-kind show-stopper. The ultimate RV. His creation, which he baptized the Tourliner, started life as a 1954 Chevrolet COE but became much more than a resto-modded truck. Once he had the cab, Moen wanted to build a trailer from scratch, to resemble the Bowlus Road Chief from the 30s.

He quickly found out the limitations of custom built suspension, with regards to supporting something that heavy. Something ready-made was needed. Something sturdy. So he found a 1985 Elite motorhome, built on a GMC chassis, which proved to be an excellent basis for his project.

Next came the engine: a Cummins diesel, built by Harbour City Diesel & Off-Road, a performance shop based in Vancouver Island. Oh, we forgot to mention. Russ Moen is Canadian. Another Canadian company, BD Diesel, then built the transmission, which - Moen told Hot Rod - was the most expensive piece in the truck.

For the camper, Moen was looking to the aircraft industry, but he found that to be too expensive for his pocket. Another thing we forgot to mention. Russ Moen is not a millionaire. His wife suggested he should approach a boat builder and, as luck would have it, he had a boat-builder friend. That's one of the nice things about the Tourliner: it's not a project that was done by a big custom shop and cost crazy money. It came to life with the help of friends and local shops.

R&R Boat Refit and Repair helped with the fenders, and Karl Foeshe did the design and cut strips of 3/16-inch-thick aluminum sheet. Inside, they put in teak and marble floors, birch and cherry cabinets, Ford Windstar seats with custom upholstery and carpets, but also a lot of technology. Aside from the things you can find in any RV - refrigerator, climate control, a 19-inch monitor - there are three cameras providing an excellent view to the rear.

The funny thing about this 1954 Chevrolet COE Tourliner is that Moen used to tell people that it was built by Howard Hughes. And the motorhome is so out of this world that they believed him!

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