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After years of wanting a T5 Camper, the opportunity came about and I decided to go for it.
My van is 2006 T32 LWB Kombi, with 2.5L engine, it has 220k on the clock, one owner from new and every receipt, for every single piece of work done on the van. It's had the new too end and replacement clutch as well, the owner spared no expense keeping it maintained.

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My plan is to have the van capable of going fully off grid for a few days comfortably, perhaps longer. With that in mind, @Hoovie has helped me spec the leisure battery system which has now arrived. Top service from @Hoovie.

This included an: Ablemail 12-12-30, Victron BMV 712, Victron 12/800 pure sine wave inverter & 2 x Leoch AGM 110ah batteries + installation kit. I will add a victron MPPT and 200W of solar at some point in the future.

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Next, the dreaded snag list. Here's what I've got to do so far:

• Door Handles
• Rear brake lights
• Rear lights upgrade (ones cracked)
• Interior Lights
• Window switches
• Headlights Washer Jet
• Rear Bumper (new or tidy up)

I've already started colour coding the handles, but i've decided to replace as some of them are just about past saving and it'll make it a lot easier. My local paint supplier got the colour match as close to perfect as possible.
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I've also installed a 2x USB charger in the dash for convenience. This is on a piggy back fuse currently but when I do all the wiring I will have a 12v supply in the dash (to power LED Light bar and other items upfront) and will change it over that.
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I've ordered from vanstyle.co.uk:

  • Genuine VW Transporter T5 - T6 One Piece Carpet Mat (really nice!)
  • 2 x VW T5 03-09 Genuine OE Inner Door Handles
  • Genuine OEM Interior Light LED Bulb Upgrade

While waiting for that stuff to come I am also in the market for a machine polisher to tidy up the outside, there is a lot of very light scratching which i want to remove before touching up other areas.

After all this, i'll start with sound deadening, ply lining and carpeting. Getting ready for the rib seat and cabinets.

The plan for equipment inside the van is as follows:
  • Compressor for tyres, tools etc.
  • Diesel heater + hot water system
  • Rib Altair on sliding rails
  • Custom designed (by me) and made cabinets
  • All the usual camper equipment
  • T5.1 front end
Hopefully, i'll have a functioning camper by the end of the year but it's unlikely to be fully complete.

  1. I'll periodically update here as any major progress is made. Thanks for reading!
 

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Certainly does look well looked after. For a quick tidy up of the bumpers, could use some chemical guys G6 Hyper Coat, will blacken them up nicely.
Look forward to seeing your progress mate (y)
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Certainly does look well looked after. For a quick tidy up of the bumpers, could use some chemical guys G6 Hyper Coat, will blacken them up nicely.
Look forward to seeing your progress mate (y)
Thanks for the heads up, that's handy - I'll get some ordered. I looked at using the heat gun method but it looked like a bit of a faff. The bumpers are so grey I was beginning to wonder whether they were actually grey from the factory. :unsure::LOL:

We were very lucky with the seller and the van, all round nice chap.

I'm picking up the sheet metal for the leisure batteries tomorrow, so looking forward to getting them fabbed up and installed - this weekend hopefully.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Bank Holiday Update:

We stripped all of interior and applied 2mm silent coat throughout and gave it a good clean.

From this:
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To this:
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I ran the power cable and sense line ready for the Ablemail B2B and the leisure battery install. Though, I didn't actually manage to wire them up or fabricate the brackets for the B2B charger + victron 12/800.

Both of the leisure batteries are now installed, i'm quite happy with the end result. I need to paint them and get some correct length bolts, but since the seats are coming out again, no bother. I may have

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Should be plenty suitable for my over-landing dreams but I may make a few changes at a later date.

Next, i will install the Victron 12/800 inverter, BM712 and Ablemail B2B. The mounts for this Will be more difficult as the victron is massive.

I need to order some wiring harness braiding as I wasn't happy not having all the wiring in a loom.

That's all for now. Stay safe.
 

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Some good work there so far mate, looking forward to this build thread.

The service Hoovie provides is excellent very helpful along the way.

Good luck mate.
 

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Nice work there mate (y) The best things take time, once the electrics are sorted and you start fitting the interior it'll really start to take shape. Keep up the good work!
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Cheers pal,

Really looking forward to doing the insulation and carpeting.I feel like that's the changing point, because then it's time to get rib seat ordered and installed.

Nice work there mate (y) The best things take time, once the electrics are sorted and you start fitting the interior it'll really start to take shape. Keep up the good work!
 

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Discussion Starter #11
I've been away for a while, a few trips done and the van has been used quite heavily so not much work, but it starts again this week.

Firstly - it's in to the garage to have a new power steering pump, fix aircon leak, MOT and service - ££££! I was going to do myself but realised I just don't have the time! Once I get it back, sound deadening, insulation, ply-lining and carpet going in. Along with wiring for plugs, lights etc. Ready for a big trip I have planned.

For now, here is a picture of it after a trip out on the dirt jumper. I am patiently waiting for the treads to wear down so I can justify putting on some all terrains. + I know I need to sort out the rear bumper!

Can anyone suggest some nice looking mudflaps?

182956
 

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Discussion Starter #13
If you want to keep commercial bumpers but don't like the grey, wurth plastic dye is worth a look
Will check it out as would be good to make it look better in the interim. We will eventually go for body coloured bumpers but at the moment focussing on getting it ready for offgrid.
 

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Have you got everything wired yet ?
Why did you mount one battery one way and one the other can i ask? :unsure:
Just ordered a battery...maybe i should have ordered 2 .:rolleyes:
 

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Have you got everything wired yet ?
Why did you mount one battery one way and one the other can i ask? :unsure:
Just ordered a battery...maybe i should have ordered 2 .:rolleyes:
Purely to fit them in. It would have been nice to have them the same.

All the cables are run but I haven't fully wired yet. I also have to machine a bracket for the B2B charger to bolt to.

My to do list is getting longer by the day!
 

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Watching with interest, dont know what i'm gonna fit under my seats yet (charger,amps, subs ,CU etc) ...only time will tell .
the best technique i find is: just buy everything you need, don't measure anything, then work it out when it's all in front of you while you spend a lot of days saying "it's not going to fit". eventually, it'll all fit. or you'll go insane. the fun is finding out which one happens first
 

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Discussion Starter #20
the best technique i find is: just buy everything you need, don't measure anything, then work it out when it's all in front of you while you spend a lot of days saying "it's not going to fit". eventually, it'll all fit. or you'll go insane. the fun is finding out which one happens first
While your kid 'reorganises' your tool box for fun.
 
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