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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Hey everyone,
Been on here for a while now and its been very useful helping me build my van!
I'm only just getting round to organizing my pics and getting a build thread sorted.

So here we go -


The van - as it was in Oct'2010
Black 2006 4motion kombi, took a while to source one as there weren't many good spec 4wd's available, luckily this one was only 30 miles away and had everything I wanted except lwb, so I had to sacrifice that but got tailgate, A/C, heated captains seats kombi privacy windows towbar and electric pack.
Was well looked after as it was privately owned by an enthusiast which was good, still was full of sand and dirt and needed a good clean!




Before I bought it the livery was removed and the bumpers were repainted.

more to follow -
 

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Discussion Starter #2 (Edited)
First things first the van had a good clean and I stripped out the rear ply floor and half lining.

Then I took a trip to espar ltd in Plymouth and picked up a shiny new eberspacher d2 kit, I stripped out the floor front and rear and removed all the seats.

I decided to fit it under the drivers seat so work began.....
this is where the mounting plate will go


Marked out where the plate goes, there is already a rubber bung underneath


This is the view from underneath with some of the undertray plastic removed


this bit was pretty scary! a few days into owning my nice new van and I'm cutting a great big hole in the floor,
don't worry its not blood! just red-oxide primer :)


Plate mounted in place -

The finished job


Here is a view from below of the exhaust pipe, you can also see the sink drain pipe but ignore that as that comes much later on!


After all this was done I popped down to espar again and they quickly did the fuel pipe on their ramp for me, all tested ok and I'm very happy with it.

Cheers for reading - more to come....
 

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Discussion Starter #3 (Edited)
Next came the insulation -

I went with the usual celotex and added some thinsulex space blanket stuff in places

Before all that I covered pretty much the whole van with flashing tape! I got loads of it really cheap and it really isn't very heavy, it made a BIG difference to the sound levels in the van.


Then I started cutting out the celotex and making an elaborate jigsaw for the awkward lower panels, taped around all the edges of the celotex to stop squeaks, took weeks to get it all done, I'm a bit ocd once I get started on a project! I put a layer of thinsulex either in front or behind the celotex for good measure.




Next step - Flooring! :)
 

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Discussion Starter #4 (Edited)
Ok so my flooring & panels -

I found a great company called vanguard in Exeter, they do really good quality birch ply lining for all vans, I had them custom cut some replacement side panels from my kombi ones and they supplied me with the one piece floor which is great.
Sides 4mm floor 9mm

Prior to all that jazz tho I tidied up a number of small rust patches and scuffs,
Then I bought some plasti-dip rubber paint which is resistant to salt water and even battery acid! gave the floor a good few coats of this -



Next I used some spare ply I got from vanguard and filled in all the gaps on the floor, stuck all this down with polyurethane adhesive
Made a nice difference to how solid the floor feels now



Heres some of the panels they did for me using the kombi ones as templates, carpeted them with Megavanmats smoke carpet (fantastic stuff)


I stuck the full floor down and got some wet-room studded vinyl off ebay didn't get many pics of this I'm afraid but heres one from much later on in the build. -


Really pleased with how the floor turned out, it feels very solid underfoot.

ps - I'd highly recommend Vanguard Exeter for ply floor and side panels, they also fit seats too
 

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Discussion Starter #5 (Edited)
Next came a very long wait to get my roof done -
Initially I had wanted to build the camper and get an sca roof done at a later date but this just wasn't practical.
I ordered my rib seat and sca roof with freebird in Feb, did the floor and the panels in the meanwhile but everything kinda ground to a halt while I waited for the roof. Finally got the roof fitted in June so work could continue! at last :) only ended up using the van once with a mattress in the back while I was waiting so not too bad!

Heres the van the day it came back, oh yeah I also bought and fitted a vw bike rack which you can spot here -
Sorry the interior pic isn't too good




I am still deciding whether to vinyl wrap the roof black/carbon or maybe just the front pod? white is certainly cooler on a hot day!

Next came the roof rack, I found a grand voyager rack on the bay for £40 in Exmouth, bargain!
The rack is great, really flexible as the sidebars move all the way forwards or backwards, not the strongest of racks but I only want to carry surfboards anyway. these are the best pics im afraid!



Fairly easy to mount but a tad scary drilling holes in my stupidly expensive fibreglass roof! I used 12 35 or 40mm m6 stainless bolts and 40mm repair washers with some ss nyloc nuts all sealed with some sika 252 or 512 I cant remember which. Had to grind the ends of the bolts flush and smooth the washers to they wouldn't hurt the roof canvas too much!


Really happy with the rack and I think it looks much better than some of the other ones I ummed and ahhed over...

More to come! :)
 

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Discussion Starter #6 (Edited)
Next was the reimo rail, this was actually really easy to fit but just a bit awkward
Firstly we offered the rail up masked the area and drilled the holes, then scuffed the paint up and red-oxided the holes




Then after applying far too much sikaflex I mounted and screwed the rail on, took me days and days to get it all off my hands! (and the side of the van) messy stuff!



Since fitting I have slightly repositioned the front rubber piece so its a bit more over the windscreen for the water run off.
All in all a good addition to the van, have used it lots now with the awning and sun shade.

Next my personal favourite addition - SOLAR PANELS! woohoo
 

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Discussion Starter #7 (Edited)
Ok so the more eagle eyes amongst you may have noticed the panels where already on the roof in the last set of pics, oops! well its hard to remember what order everything was done! and I am not paying as much attention as I should! it is nearly 1am tho but I'm determined to get a bit more done.

I had been thinking about solar power for sometime and had my eye on a few panels, I settled on 2 80w flexible panels from lensunhk
this things are great, only 2.5mm thick and really tough yet light. there was another thread on here which I saw and that helped me decide on these panels. 2 panels and a regulator came to £560 delivered I think, I almost went for 2 100w panels at £720 but they wouldn't quite fit.

here's the panels as I was trimming them down a bit. took about 30mm of each edge which got rid of the 6 metal mounting eyelets and made them just the right size for the roof -



Test fitting them



After they were stuck down, again using sikaflex


Here you can also see all the holes for the roofrack


This is how I ran the wires into the van, two small 3mm holes in a figure of 8 for the wires to go straight in just behind the junction box on each panel, all sealed into place.




Here are the wires running along the roof to the back of the van where they go through into the side panel, I joined both the + & - from each panel together and put the wires into convoluted tube to protect them -



So far we have been to a few festivals and the panels have kept everything running very well, the battery was full before I even woke up each morning! a very worthy addition as I gotta have cold corona in the fridge and jager in the freezer whilst off grid! :) heheh
 

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Discussion Starter #8 (Edited)
Next comes carpeting!

I got 12m of smoke carpet from Mark at Mega Van Mats, along with lots of glue. great product, helpful service from Mark T:

I had already carpeted all my side panels but hadn't done the rest as I was waiting for the sca roof to be done.

The panels were easy really but the rest of the carpeting was harder than expected!

the end result though is fantastic and well worth all the sweat and glue covered hands etc!

from this


to this, it gives such a nice feel to the van interior


I didnt like the idea of putting self tappers everywhere, so again I went for the much more long winded (OCD!) route of fitting rivnuts for all the panels, this took ages but in the end I was happy with the finish, I used these stainless button head bolts with special plastic collars and grey caps (cap not on in this pic)


Here's some more shots of the carpeting as it progressed, round the window was tricky! I went overboard and did all around the roof and even the underside of the roof bed. Oh yeah by this point I had also fitted my van-x curtains, didn't get any shots of that tho as I was rushing to get them done for a night away!









This was probably the point when it really started feeling like a proper camper, surprising what a bit of carpet can do!

Nearly there!.......
 

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Discussion Starter #9 (Edited)
Now I enjoy doing a bit of wiring, I'm building a loom for my competition car too so I was keen to get it all done myself in the van.
I could never have imagined how many wires I would end up with in here! heheh

This isn't quite in time order as I did a lot of the wiring right at the start, ho humm....

I bought a cbe pc200 system to go in and already had plenty of wires for the d2 heater to run, on top of that I ran loads of thinwall cable for lights & switches etc, tried to make sure I wouldn't be short of a spare in the future,

I ran some 25mm2 battery cable form the engine bay under the front mat & seats and off to the side panel to eventually join up to the cbe split charge.

I saw a post on here about a hinging the plastic bit above the rear bumper to hide the mains hookup so I shamelessly pirated that idea! and ran my mains wire in from there, heres a few pics of the tangled mess in no particular order!







Eber & CBE control units + a CBE temp sensor




I mounted two flexible map lights in the roof




Here shows where the battery will go along with the mains battery charger mounted on the side panel.


This is a exterior 12v socket on the opposite plastic panel to where the mains hookup is -


Ill come back to the electrics in the next post as I need to get some furniture in here stat!....
 

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Discussion Starter #10 (Edited)
did someone say furniture?

I saw some of the freebird furniture while I was in the workshop, I pestered them and got them to build me a flatpack of their deluxe units with overhead cupboards and underseat drawers, the more storage the better! far from cheap but with a few weeks of work it looks great...















Added 2 mains sockets a 12v and an audio input inside, on the rear panel 2 switches for the tailgate spots and the exterior 12v socket.


And some more of the electrics - what a jumble!








Phew, finally uploaded most of what I have done so far, need to get some more pics tomorrow of the overhead units and drawers as well as the seat which seems to have evaded the camera thus far! only bit left for me to do now is the rear overhead cupboard and my new wheels which should be here tomorrow,

in the near future I'm planning on raising the van with a seikel kit to get a bit more headroom under my awning and tailgate as I'm 6'6, plus I wanna go offroad! heheh

thanks for reading, hope you like it. be back with more soon....

cheers
 

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Very impressive, mate - will have another look through when I'm not so tired, but its looking great T:
 

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Fascinating stuff I like ur attention to detail. The sca roof looks really good, especially the front pod, are u pleased with it and how is it sleeping up there being so tall? And finally how much are they to buy?!
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Thanks guys! There's more to come still, I'll be home later and will upload my wheel pics Ü

The sca roof is fantastic, the bed is just long enough for me and comfy too, not as good as the rib with the extra memory foam tho!
Fitted it was about £3500

I may add a removable extension to the roof bed to make it a bit longer.
 
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