Updated: Jul 31, 2019
Its been some time since we updated the blog on our van conversion, it has been a busy few months for the business and we have attended a few trade shows, this has meant the van has taken longer than we had hoped and I haven't had much time to update the blog.
If you are on Facebook and want to keep up with the conversion Kevin regularly posts updates to the #crafterlife group on Facebook, you are more than welcome to join and share your conversions with the group.
So since our last post we have managed to get quiet a bit done, we have been researching items to purchase for the van and we are looking to create a section of our shop dedicated to products for van life projects.
So where to start? The cladding of the two sides of the van where the next big job we took on after insulation. We have decided not to pop a window in the drivers side to help keep the van warm/cool and for cost reasons. So cladding the sides was straight forward.
We used a slate grey wood paint on the cladding watered down and finished with a furniture wax. The finished effect of pale blue/grey washed wood really makes the van look spacious and light.
To help fill the van with light we added windows in the back, these were purchased from Just Kampers and we have to say, don't be afraid to do them yourself, they are really easy to fit. It took a few hours to do each one and we still have to decide how to finish them on the inside of the van. They make a massive difference to the light that we now get in the van and it has given us the confidence to fit the side window in the sliding door ourselves when we get to that part of the project!
Most of the time we will be using the van will be for wild camping and trade show's where there wont be any power available to us. However we thought we would still have the option for hook up and we were able to source this black mains inlet that sits nicely on the side of our van and doesn't stick out to much. This now gives us the option of having 24v hook up as well as charging up our leisure batteries until we can add solar panels. If you would like one of these mains inlet's for your conversion, they are available from ourselves in black, grey and white £25.00 plus £5 postage. This will be listed in our new #vanlife section of the shop soon, for now you can get in touch and we will send you an invoice.
The van had previously been a race van and parts of the ceiling was a little grubby, we wanted to add extra insulation and so we stripped the boards back to recover and add insulation to the roof.
We went on a shopping trip to our local fabric shop & settled on a blue fabric that complemented the wall cladding. With a little spray adhesive and some staples the new lining went up with little fuss and finished the ceiling off nicely. We want to be able to take the ceiling down at some point in the future to add a roof light, and we are also going to add over head storage that we can take down easily to access the ceiling.
Now this was something we wanted to get right first time, and something that we thought about a lot. What is best to put down on a van floor? Our other vans have had plastic tiles, laminate flooring and lino. What would be easy to clean and last the wear and tear of out door living?
We went for a laminate flooring that has a grey washed out effect with metal trim on the edges at the side and back doors. After its first camp out we are happy to report that this was great choice, easy to clean and with the underlay it gave the van extra insulation.
We spent most of the Easter break getting the van ready for its first weekend show, and tested the layout. We will show you more on the next blog and explain the changes we have made to the original layout along with the reasons why we changed them.
Joanne & Kevin