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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So 11yrs ago I brought this van and did a camper conversion with nice glossy red fronts and a fancy diamond stitched 3/4 rock n roll bed. As we grew to a family of 5, the van suddenly got real small as one very soggy weekend in woolacombe ended up with all of us sleeping in the 3/4 bed.
I hastily sold the whole camper setup and replaced it with a full width bed and new interior to match. Less than 3 months later the engine blew up and its taken me 9 yrs to fix it.

So here we are, spring 2021. The 2 eldest kids are now adults and off doing their own thing leaving just one. Suddenly the van life is back on for 2021. One of the reasons for taking so long to fix the van was down to buying an old run down house, I had to mothball the T4 but Ive had plenty of practice with a hammer and a paintbrush. So here goes, we're booked into camper jam meaning the pressure is on. With the way the world is right now the brief is simple - make an off grid camper inspired by all the van life stuff ive been drooling over on pintrest.

The last interior was built mostly by my brother, he owns retroretrims and does this stuff for a living. Unfortunately for me hes moved 150 miles away so I gotta do this one all by myself. The headling has long collapsed and some of the bits and pieces have disappeared but the seats and side panels are still good so the plan is the build a kitchen unit to compliment them whilst trying to keep to the off grid "van life" theme.
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 · (Edited)
191846


Ground zero. Had to pull the side panel and arch carpet off due to welding on the inner arch. The insulation is getting pulled out cos im certain thats what caused the arches to rot away. Im gonna cut the full width bed and make it into a 3/4 width. Ive contacted by bro about the headlining material, hes saying its unavailable so we're going for something completely different.
Oh and i'll be taking the fixed side window out and fitting a slider in there - gets real hot in here during the summer I recall
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 · (Edited)
191848


So I cut the bed a few weekends ago, didnt go to badly but still needs a little bit of attention before its finished. The important thing is I now have a little bit of room to work.
At this point Id re glued any loose bits of black carpet lining, fitted 2x100w rigid solar panels and run wiring for anything I think im gonna be using.
Im not a fan of cladding but seeing how almost every search for van life on pintrest came back with pics of cladded vans, I guess when in rome....
I read somewhere that you should start in the centre and work out - this didnt work for me and I had to start again from the edge and work across to the other side. I screwed some cladding strips to the roof strengtheners and then fixed the cladding to these strips. im gonna sink the screws and fill although i will leave the edge pieces removable just in case I need to get to the nuts holding the solar panels.
Each to their own but im not feeling the wood finish and i also need this to tie in with the black/green seats.
Seeing how im gonna be having a kitchen unit, i deceided to pull the driver side panel as it going to be covered up anyways. I might need the material for something else further down the line..
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 · (Edited)
191849


We get loads of pallets coming into our work, even better we get quite a few crates made from 12mm ply. I'll be using these to build the kitchen unit. Having said that Im going to buy some fence posts, these are going to really make the kitchen a kick ass piece of furniture. A few months ago I made a hifi cabinet for my daughters birthday, it took me quite a while to figure out how I was going to do it but when I did, I knew id stumbled on the T4 kitchen build.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 · (Edited)
So we're up to May day weekend, had a productive one. Removed to old side window and fitted the new one (had to smash the old one in the end cos removing it properly was taking too long, stained/distressed the cladding with a load of old paint I had in the shed and finally got started on the kitchen build.. How many weekends till camperjam?

191851

191852


really pleased with the headlining now, there's 3 shades of paint on there black, grey and a touch of green. I went over it all with some wood dye from screwfix to blend it all together. I will oil it in a few days - should be good for the next few yrs hopefully.
 

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looks lush! really like the ceiling
 

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Huge transformation with the cladding, looks great!

With regards to the kitchen furniture, 1" x 1" or 2" x 2" softwood max would be enough, just to help keep weight down, my first build I used 2" x 2" timbers for my bed frame, when stripping that out I opted for 2" x 1" which was just as strong but half the overall weight. Obviously this is just my humble opinion and may not work for what you're planning.

Either way, look forward to next update (y)
 
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