Thursday, August 11, 2011

The Van layout..

The vandaminium started out as a high top conversion van with 4 swiveling captains chairs and a fold down bench seat in the back. I removed the center row of captains chairs and the bench seat in the back. The bench seat was replaced with a platform bed (biggish twin size?) with enough room underneath for storage. A counter top with a sink and stove runs the length of the remaining room on the drivers side. The cabinet started with a stainless sink with a 12v water pump (Jabsco), a blue Reliance 7 gallon fresh water tank and a 2 burner camp stove which did not fit right due to my mis-measurements. I replaced the stove with a 2 burner RV stove and added an Edgestar FP430 12v refrigerator/freezer.

The bed is laid out the width of the rear of the van and although it is a little short, if I lay at an angle I can stretch out. The mattress is a couple of pieces of foam giving me a total thickness of about 4 inches (could use a little more!!) It is covered in cotton sheets and in the summers I use a fleece blanket and in the winter I use a down sleeping bag. The bed is pretty comfy and I usually sleep pretty well.

The kitchen setup is a work in progress with one element usually working at a time. The stove works great and is hooked up to a 5lb propane tank which lasts a long time. The tank is located under the sink although I would like to get a horizontal mount propane tank under the van. The sink is hooked up to a blue Reliance water tank that kind of fits under the sink. The pump runs off the second battery and this setup has never really worked to my liking. When I re-do the kitchen I think I will go a different direction. As it is, I usually just use a gallon water jug when I need water. The sink drains directly through the floor and since I am very aware of the cleaning products I use, I don't have a problem with discharging grey water on the ground.

This year I added a closet for hanging clothes with a set of plastic drawers beneath for t-shirts and underwear. The closet works pretty well but is not quite tall enough. It is better than last years solution which was a plastic bin under the bed with all my wrinkled clothes mismashed in. This way at least the upper parts of my shirts a relatively wrinkle free. I have also removed the passenger seat for more storage. My raft lives there now but I hope to move that to a hitch mount cargo carrier and build a small platform with storage underneath where the passenger seat used to be. I also have a small storage ottoman which doubles as a seat. The interior is a little cramped but not too bad. If I could change anything, I would have a higher roof like a bubble top van. as it stands, I have to stoop inside.

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