Halfway Through our DIY Campervan Conversion

February 28, 2017

Looking back at 6 months of conversion effort

… seeing this with hindsight reminded us the last half year just flew by.

It’s crazy seeing Isabelle standing in this empty cargo van for the first time, we were so excited. But we had no idea all the work that was ahead of us…

Van Conversion Halfway Through (1-)

That. First. Start.

Ford Transit 2016 first start

Do we have what it takes to convert a van?

This is the test right here. We just brought home a new shiny van and the first thing we do is cut a big hole through the roof! There is no turning back now… First mod completed!

Van Conversion Halfway Through (3-)

Solar Power

Harvesting power from the sun feels a bit like cheating. We love it!

Van-Conversion-Halfway-Through-(4-marked)

Passenger Swivel Seat

Space is a very precious & rare thing in a van. A swivel seat is a great way to optimize space!

Floor

We insulated the floor with 1.5″ thick foam board to keep our feet warm. Even if most of the floor is hidden by furniture, we completely finished it to prevent against water (and beer) infiltration in case of a spill.

Gasoline Air Heater

We wanted a four seasons capable van. The Webasto gasoline air heater is one of the key element to that. It is fed from the van fuel tank, so there is no need to monitor our combustible level.

Insulation

We insulated the van with 3M Thinsulate. It is a high-quality hydrophobic material that has thermal and noise insulation properties.

Van Conversion Thinsulate Insulation

Bed & Bike Storage

The slide-out bike rack is located under the bed; the raised-bed create a room that we called the “garage”…

Slide-Out Bike Rack Van

Electrical System

We play it cool, showing off on Instagram and all. But no power = no smartphone = the end of #vanlife as we know it.

EZ-Cool

Thinsulate (black thing in the picture) was installed over the van panels, but some sheet metal is still exposed. Every sheet metal still exposed was hidden under a layer of EZ-Cool (the bright shiny thing in the picture) to break the thermal bridge.

Van Conversion Halfway Through (16-)

Bedroom & Overhead Storage

Organisation is the key to sanity in small space. Our bed storage was designed with that in mind!
We also built a kitchen overhead storage. The doors are gas spring actuated and it makes a spaceship sound as it opens.

Pressurized Water System

We installed a 25 gallons fresh water tank, pump, accumulator and Dometic folding sink. The black box (lower-right) is a portable propane hot shower (Mr Heater BOSS).

Van Conversion Halfway Through (19-)

We Quebecers are known to hang out in our kitchen a lot. We MUST have an emulation of a real kitchen. Just smaller, but functional with the Dometic folding sink, the Atwood propane range and the Novakool sealed-compressor 12V fridge.

Van Conversion Halfway Through (20-)

This was a LOT of work so far, but it’s far from finished. Nevermind, it’s time for a well deserved break.

As seen on the Interwebs…

IMGUR

These pictures were posted on Imgur and they were featured on the “Most Viral” page. They reached over 450 000 views in 24 hours!

Faroutride on Imgur

GO-VAN

We were featured on the Go-Van Facebook page!

Ford New-Zealand

… and Ford New-Zealand joined the party!

 

 

WANT MORE?

Check out our Build Journal, learn everything about The Van, read our VanLife Guides, or if you’re new to this start by reading The Prologue.

 

 

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ABOUT US

Hello! We’re Isabelle and Antoine 🙂 In 2017 we sold our house (and everything in it), quit our engineering careers and moved into our self built campervan. We’ve been on the road since then and every day is an opportunity for a new adventure; we’re chasing our dreams and hopefully it inspires others to do the same!

 

 

CHEERS!

 

 

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