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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
My LWB Build thread. Lots of photos. Team White.

Right, like many I have had dreams of creation and pottering to produce a master piece.

I have sold my soul and dived into the world of VW T5.

My wish list:

LWB
Tailgate
1.9 Engine

What I got:

LWB
Tailgate
1.9 Engine
White

The first photos are the ones that were sent to me prior to purchase from Transporterland.

 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
So for the price I got colour coded bumpers alloy wheels and the electric pack to include electric windows and mirrors, reversing sensors, air con.

The moment of picking it up was suddenly hitting me the mammoth task I had ahead of me.

Upon collection the fuel light was on so first stop was the jungle juice factory. This is where I fell over...£125 to fill it up!! Holly [email protected]#T!!

I got it home and started thinking on where to start!!!
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 · (Edited)
First thing to do was to rip out the bulkhead brackets along the sides and the floor. I used pure brutality on these. The tools I used were:

Big hammer
Chissel
Angle grinder

Once it was out I used some red oxide paint to touch up the battle wounds. There are plenty of photos on here of that so wont upload mine.

Next task was to strip out the old ply lining and start the insulation process. OR so I thought.... In hindsight I would have done my electrics at this point and started running wires all over the place. As you will see later my plans had to change for one reason or another...

These were my original plans due to having to dogs to accommodate I wanted them to have a separate area especially when they get wet and dirty!



For the insulation I brought the kit from West Country Campers, I used the foil insulation then the foam sound proofing followed by the second layer of insulation bubble stuff.

On the lower panels I filled the voids with the recycled bottle insulation from B&Q then put the second layer of the bubble wrap over.

 

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Discussion Starter · #8 · (Edited)
Now for the floor I decided to use flashband for sound proofing, battens of wood with bubble wrap in between them followed by the ply lining over the top. Sounds easy huh.... I learnt a lot doing this and the learning had only just began.....



With the van insulated and sound proofed I moved onto the electrics that I wanted in there. I had pre brought most of the bits I needed, however during the last few weeks Upspex has saved me a number of times by having just the product to solve my problems.

Seriously if you need something then call Upspex he will ease your pains!

So what I wanted:

Leisure battery
RCD for a mains hook up
Split charge kit
Battery charger
Inverter

Having never really taken on big jobs such as this made me a bit blurry eyed to be honest especially when dealing with 240 volts. Even still I found it a doddle, one job at a time and it all went well. I wanted the battery and split charge under the drivers seat and the rest under the passenger seat. As per photos...



The photo shows the split charge kit coming through the firewall to the battery. That was such and easy feed. I have spent endless hours trying to getting cabling from the battery to the footwell, this was so simple it was unreal. I fed through a few meters of cable in the hope I may be able to find it and it was sat there on the floor in the cab.... this is probably where all the easy jobs end!
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 · (Edited)
At this point I started to think about what cabling I was going to need and how I was going to put it in to the installation. I know... I can hear you shouting at me saying I should have done this before the insulation. Well you live and learn huh...

I went to a local electrical retailer to collect some wiring. I spoke to a few people there, I spoke to one person who had visited a caravan factory recently. She said that the only wiring that they use is 2 core flexi cable. This had me thinking, I went in with a list of different coloured and lengths of wires for all my electrics, when actually this would have cost me a fortune. I brought a reel of 100 meters of the 2 core flexi.

The advantage of this is the protection that it has due to being sheathed hopefully it will stop any chance of the cable wearing through at points where it may come into contact with the body.

I started by pulling the cable through some trunking in order to keep it all together. I fitted about 8 cables through the trunking which was going to be enough for what I needed.

 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
I started to make enquiries at this point with regards to the rock and roll bed. I ended up opting for a Cannon Forge 3/4. From talking to Dave (who is very patient with numpties) basically I found out that my original planned was about to be flushed due to the bed not being able to be mounted in the forward fitting position that I put one of my first photos.

If it was going to be in any sort of way that I had planned then a bonded floor and rails would have to be installed. This didn't work out to be a cost effective solution for me.

Therefore it had to be a complete re think. It changed into the traditional lay out of sorts....I have decided to opt for the traditional layout but the foremost 3 foot or so is to be empty to ba able to accommodate the dogs. During the day it wouldn't be too bad but when the bed comes down having cupboards there would really limit the space available for them to stretch out.

Now originally the wheel arches were going to be boxed in, therefore I had stuck flashband to them in preparation for stuffing the wheel arch boxes with the recycled bottle insulation. Due to the change of layout the wheel arches are no longer to be boxed in, so yup you have guessed it the flashband had to come off. This is a job you don't want to have to do. I didn't take any pictures of this part as I was too busy shouting swearing and cursing.

It doesn't just peel off, when you pull it generally it ripped, it was a long time with rags and white spirit.

Still it was done and then they looked like white clean wheel arches. The mount for the jack had to come off and for this the tools I used were:

Angle grinder! (can't go wrong)

Flooring:

I said earlier that the plan was to flash band - this was done, the battens and silver bubblewrap.

I originally used 6mm ply stuck together and stuck to the floor. For the sticking part I used no more nails. This I didn't find very good at all. The battens just didn't stick very well.

I later researched on here and found that 9mm is the correct height to use to bring the flooring in line with the top of the battens. Also Silkflex is the best sticky stuff to use. I left my to cure overnight with weights on them to ensure they stayed in contact with the flooring.

 

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Discussion Starter · #11 · (Edited)
By the time the flooring got ripped up and re done I had snuck some carpet onto the framework.

I went with Mega Van Mats, I brought 12 metres of the stuff (being a LWB I was advised this was a good length to have allowing for any first timer mistakes.) I phoned them up to sort out lengths etc. On the phone their service was brilliant, polite helpful and knowledgeable, I didn't catch her name but she knew her stuff.

I was real worried about the carpeting, this being what every one will see as the final layer to the van etc. After it has all been done it actually wasn't too bad. The adhesive works really well and the stretchy carpet is great stuff to work with.

Just take your time when doing it and think before cutting, and yes it does eat the knife blades.

I did the panels first.

 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
The ply lining kit I used I brought from ebay. I wasn't impressed with it if I am honest. They were not able to provide the panels to individual request such as having windows etc. The side panels didn't come all the way down to the floor so additional panels had to made up by me to fill the voids.

My garage started to look like a wood factory at this point.

 

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Doing a cracking job there mateA:
Bet there's not a person on here who hasn't effed up something while converting their van,apart from me of courseI:
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Cheers lloyd13 I appreciate that. There are certain aspects in the van which I am not entirely happy with but I have been told I will grow to love them as quirks of the van ie she has told me to leave them alone!! LOL

Right for a first timer...screws... I went for the drywall screws after much deliberation. 25mm x 3.5mm in black. I though these may hide nicely with the anthracite carpet lining.

I don't have many power tools. I have a donated drill, a donated jigsaw and that about summed it up. I trotted off to B&Q again, and got myself some new blades for the jigsaw and treated myself to a rechargeable cordless screwdriver due to the amount of screwing I was to be doing.

I suffered a lot getting the screws through the metal panel. I tried all the ideas previously mentioned, including drilling (and snapping drill bits) pre screwing holes then lining the ply holes up, this sounds ok till half the panel is attached to the wall and you cant see the holes.

Again I resorted to violence, using a girt big hammer, I screwed the screw in past the ply till it lifted off the metal then smacked it till it went through, not the best idea but it did work for most of them. The rest just either bent snapped or went blunt!

Now most of the panels went up ok, on the second day of fitting my guchi screwdriver went flat so I recharged it, when going to use it again it spun round fine yet as soon as pressure was put on it it died. So I went back to B&Q for a refund and decided to spend out and buy a 'decent' cordless drill / driver combo. I have to say I wish I had listened to the other half who said the previous day to go and get one but I mustered through.

Only having the roof left to do was the only down side of welding my new weapon.

I think some of my struggle with the panels was going through the overlap of carpet on the metal work as the screw does catch on it and twist around it preventing it going in. Still it was too late to rectify this now.

Roof panels do need a second person to assist in holding the panels up to the roof in the right position while the other has to quickly get a screw in to hold the panel up before the other persons arms can't stay up any longer.

I had a number of issues even with the new driver getting through certain parts of the paneling, whether it was too thick or an area that had been welded I don't know but I had to change the position of screws as and when they failed to go through.

I used the original roof paneling which I cut down slightly to suit my lighting plans which I will show later. The holes were trimmed off and any remaining holes were gaffa taped over, they didn't show through the carpet so I was happy. As for the OE interior lights I cut a template out and filled the holes and gaffa taped around on both sides which worked a treat.

 

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Discussion Starter · #16 · (Edited)
From the last photo you can see that there are some electrics now migrating to the rear of the van. Due to the battery being too tall to fit under the Sportscraft swivel bases a few things had to be moved.

The battery was relocated to the rear, the split charge kit will just about reach from the battery under the bonnet under the seats and down the offside of the van to about 3 foot from the rear door without too much of a stretch.

Due to this the invertor had to be moved so not to over extend the power cabled, then the charger had to be moved... so I moved everything. I decided to mount it all on a carpeted board on the rear offside wall.



This is going to be boxed in by the rear cabinets.


As for the Sportscraft swivel bases I was not overly impressed with the mounting holes. I ordered the T5 kit and it took some jiggery pokery to get them all in. In hindsight instead of attaching it to the seat base then the seat on top, I would attache to the seat then to the base for an easier install. Being as it came with no instructions whats a man supposed to do! LOL (Still they have now been fitted and they are all good.)

I also did the handbrake kit which again needed some modification in order to fit the bolts required. I have also cut down the handbrake cover with a jigsaw in order for it to sort of fit. I decided to use the bolts to attache it which sort of works.

I tried taking some photos but they didn't really show what I wanted. Basically I cut a good inch from the bottom, I cut a longer v shape in the front where the handbrake drops down then drilled two holes in order to mount on to the bolts and attached via to the nuts on the top. It seems to work for now. The actual sleeve was also trimmed to fit mainly on the side that fits the drivers seat.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 · (Edited)
Next step was lighting in the roof which I have been working on for some time.

Basically I wanted there to be a center strip running form the front to rear with LED's either side to come on as the courtesy lights when the doors are opened. In the middle of this strip I want to have some white LED spot or similar that can be controlled from my switch panel as and when I want. So here are some photos of the progress.




As you can see there was a lot of preparation that went into getting any of the lights up there and what a mammoth task it was too. Blood pressure levels through the roof. :)



Finally got the right things in the right place and this is what I have ended up with.

 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Ikea was the source of my light like every one else on here pretty much!

The install was challenging yet satisfying.

I did find a small glitch, the lights didn't go off when I closed the sliding door. After much testing of cable I established, well when I say that I found that by scratching my head I could make them go off. It was then I realised there is a 30 second timed delay on the lights going off, there isn't one on the tailgate.

I think they look good and I am happy with how they look. What do you reckon?
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 · (Edited)
Re: 1st timer LWB build Thread

From here I turned my attention to the flooring. I had already obtained some lino from a local store which was an off cut for a fair price. I cut this out prior to putting the flooring down so I had the approximate shape already in place.

With some fine trimming it fits. Although I'm not entirely happy with some of the edging. I am looking for some 1/4 round rubber strip that I can put around the edge in order to tidy it up, most people wouldn't notice it... but I know its there!



The Cannon Forge was sat in my garage at this point and needed to go in. I used the tie down bolt holes to lash the bed to, simple as it sounds to be fair, cut/drill hole through ply using the spacers provided and bolt down!

 

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Discussion Starter · #20 · (Edited)
I found from here it has all been fine tuning really making things that will be the finishing touches.

Plug sockets behind the passenger seat.



Blank behind the drivers seat. You can see in this one I have made a small panel to attach to the back of the seat which I think tidies up the gap that was there.



I do have the OE VW rear panels but with the swivel bases they won't attach.
 
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