Headliner Shelf Installation on a Ford Transit Van (DIY or Aluminum)

Headliner Shelf Installation on a Ford Transit Van (DIY or Aluminum)

Vancillary Headliner Shelf Installation Ford Transit Van Heading
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Installing a headliner shelf is something we forgo on our first van conversion. But for FarOutVan #2, we won’t miss the opportunity to add extra storage to this unused space. Vancillary offers a DIY kit that includes brackets and a 1:1 paper template to make the shelf yourself, but we splurged on the full kit with the aluminum shelf… sometimes it’s OK to take shortcuts! Below we documented the installation in our Ford Transit, we hope this helps.

Headliner-Shelf-Installation-Ford-Transit-Van-1-Preparation

Time


15 min (alu)
~ 4 hours (DIY)

Cost


$469 USD (alu)
~$200 USD (DIY)

Weight


2 lbs (alu)

Material


ITEM (choose one)DESCRIPTIONBUY
Ford Transit Headliner Shelf – AluminumBrackets, hardware, and aluminum shelfVancillary.com
Ford Transit Headliner Shelf – DIY KitBrackets, hardware, and paper templateVancillary.com
Sprinter Headliner Shelf – AluminumBrackets, hardware, and aluminum shelfVancillary.com
Sprinter Headliner Shelf – DIY KitBrackets, hardware, and paper templateVancillary.com
Use “FOR” coupon code at checkout for 10% discount on your order!

Tools


ITEMDESCRIPTIONLINK
Ratchet with 7mm, 8mm, socketsTo remove/install Transit’s headliner screws
Ratchet extensionTo remove/install Transit’s headliner screwsAmazon
10mm wrenchTo install the nuts holding the shelf
(a ratchet won’t work for the nuts closest to the windshield, not enough room)
Screwdriver with Philips bitTo install the screws holding the shelf

Aluminum vs DIY Shelf


aluminum shelf
  • Easy and fast installation (15-20 minutes).
  • Premium look (powder coated black).
  • Light weight.
  • Durable.
DIY shelf
  • Use the 1:1 paper template to make your own shelf.
  • Unique look.
  • More time,
  • less money!

Headliner Shelf Installation on a Transit Van


(We went with the aluminum shelf, so making the DIY shelf is not covered below.)

1. Install the Brackets


On the driver side of the overhead console, remove the front screw with a 7mm socket:

Then, remove the back screw with an 8mm socket:

Insert the Vancillary’s bracket on top of the grab handle, and reinstall the two screws (let them loose for now):

Repeat for the driver side:

2. Install the Overhead Shelf


Slide the shelf forward, on top of the brackets:

Install all the screws, washers, and nuts on the driver/passenger side brackets (with a Phillips bit and a 10mm wrench):

Pull on the console inserts to remove them:

Install the 1/4″ screw from under, install the center plate on top, install the washer/nut, and replace the console inserts:

3. Tighten Everything


Make sure to tighten all the shelf’s screws:

Tighten the overhead console’s screws on the driver and passenger side:

And we’re DONE!

Vancillary Headliner Shelf Installation Ford Transit Van (Final Result)
Vancillary Headliner Shelf Installation Ford Transit Van (final result) (2)

In FarOutVan #1, our VanMadeGear Window Covers were stored loose on the bed… not in FarOutVan #2! This van is going to have all the features we missed in our first conversion 🤩


On Second Thought…


Well, adding the Vancillary overhead shelf is actually the result of a second thought… FarOutVan #1 didn’t have one, and we wish it had!

The shelf installation was straightforward and fast, and it comes with all the necessary hardware… yep it’s a no-brainer!


Other VAN LIFE STORAGE Ideas


Small spaces are fast to clean, but they also get messy in the blink of an eye! The key to sanity for Van Life is staying organized and taking advantage of all the space available to optimize the storage. In our van, we like each object to have its own dedicated storage place, so it can be easily put back where it belongs. Here are some storage, organization, and space-saving ideas we actually use for our full-time Van Life. We hope this helps!


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About-Us-Narrow

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. Every day is an opportunity for a new adventure... We’re chasing our dreams, and hopefully it inspires others to do the same!

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Thanks to all of you, we managed to negociate group discount on these. Strength in numbers!

4 thoughts on “Headliner Shelf Installation on a Ford Transit Van (DIY or Aluminum)”

  1. Have you found yourself bumping your head on the shelf at all when moving from front to back? I’d love the extra space but not if it means extra head bonks!

    Reply
  2. Broken link: The link in 3 – Van Life Storage Ideas leads to “Page not found”. Great site. Thank you for sharing so much helpful info.

    Reply

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