JUNE TO JULY 2016
First things first. We’re not off road enthusiasts, but we’re not roadies either. We need tires that can handle highway, off-road and snow as well. And we don’t mind the badass look too, because we’re such badass people.
Do you have what it takes to convert a brand new van? This is the test right here. You just brought home a new shiny van and the first thing you do is make a big hole through the roof! There is no turning back now…
Snow is awesome. Winter is awesome. We want to get some, but we don’t want to freeze to death. The Webasto Gasoline air heater provides a very nice source of heat. As opposed to a propane heater, the heat is dry and will help keep moisture low in the van.
The Webasto/Espar air heaters are great, but they sound a bit like a jet is taking off beside your van. Here are a few tips/products to reduce the noise to an acceptable level.
The Webasto/Espar heaters are somewhat sensitive to oxygen level. An incomplete combustion resulting of a lack of oxygen will produce carbon deposit and could completely block the combustion chamber. Some adjustments are to be made if spending extended stays at above 5000 feet altitude.
AUGUST 2016 TO MARCH 2017
Hint & Tip!
We don’t like drilling holes in our van as it could:
– attract rust on bare edges
– spread metal chips all over (almost impossible to remove and will attract rust)
– interfere with your van electronics (!)
Plusnut is the solution! We prepared a fully detailed article about Plusnut (choosing the right size, installation tips, etc). Check it out!
Welcome to the most controversial topic on van conversion! Thermal Insulation. There is no consensus here; choose your side!
(Hint: we’re on the Thinsulate side)
There are a lot of creative way to make a bed layout. We just went functional and installed a raised, permanent, platform bed; this creates a lot of “garage” room and we need that a lot!
Designing a 12V electrical system from scratch is not an easy task, we learnt that the hard way. We are not specialists, but we gained a good knowledge through the design & installation process. In this post, we share everything we know and we explain how we went from nothing to a fully functional electrical system.
We hesitated to install a draft beer system in our DIY campervan conversion, but we finally installed a pressurized water system instead. This is the Water System Installation of our DIY campervan conversion. Materials, tools, cost and installation. Fully illustrated for your viewing pleasure!
We chose Thinsulate as our “main” thermal and noise insulation. To be effective, Thinsulate requires to be fully expanded: that’s almost 2 inches thick for SM600L Thinsulate. There are locations where we just don’t have that space (we rather keep that space as living area), so we installed EZ Cool…
Right from the start, we knew we wanted a rustic finish. It is fairly easy to obtain a nice & clean finish with the tongue and groove paneling: each plank will sit flush the the adjacent planks, creating a uniform & continuous surface. The planks are relatively thin at 5/16” thickness, making them flexible enough to conform to the van funky surfaces. We did not sand the planks, but we finished them with varnish to protect them against a spaghetti incident.
After a few trial-and-error we finally found what (we think) are the perfect recessed ceiling LED lights! The first LED we ordered were WAY too bright as the glass was clear instead of frosted. Even with a dimmer, the light was shocking for the eye. Then we stumbled on the Acegoo LED lights…
We plan on living full time for a year or two in the van. For a minimum of comfort (and convenience), we really wanted a toilet and after reading about composting toilets, it seamed like the perfect solution for us!
It’s honestly really easy to install and manage; there is no odor (that’s right!) and no black water to deal with. Sweeeeet!