Van Build

  • we did 2 months severl times with no ice (makes a mess and is expensive) Just the cooler. I got sick of wilted lettuce and slimy tomatoes... they go fast in a hot van.. It will super cool to come back from climbing an have cold fresh vs warm and runny yougurt, ice cold seltzer and crisp fresh lettuce... etc. wicked stoked.. batteries arrived today so I can make the compartment for them even though I don't have the van at home.

  • Toby, we never go deep without at least 5 gallons of water in the rig.

  • @NickG

    Preachin' to the choir. Don't know how many times I "rescued" some stranded rig. And not just off road. Anywhere out in the desert even paved pre cell phone days.

    Same kind of common sense precautions apply if you live in Alaska: a warm coat permanently stashed behind the seat w/both a lighter and waterproof/windproof matches/fire starters zipped up in one of the pockets. A bit of steel wool can come in handy as well. Cuz you can wait pretty much anything out except hypothermia.

    Amazes me how many people are totally unprepared and reliant up external help/rescue these days. I guess that comes w/the ubiquity of cell and satellite phones? Not my scene. Prefer to be as self reliant as possible. Cannot be prepared for everything, however, and shit will happen so it's also ill advised to get too cocky and tempt fate.

    P.S.; Oh yeah, don't forget the fire extinguisher. Yeah, I actually had to use mine once on some other persons car that overheated and caught fire. I was like; "Holy fuck, that lady's engine campartment is on fire." Heading on up the "Grapevine" no less. Just reacted w/o thinking. Glad nothing blew up in my face. My little unit dampened it out enough for a trucker who'd also pulled over to finish up the job w/his big rig extinguisher.

  • used the fire extinguisher on both Vanagons.. the valve cover gaskets leak on to the manifold and catch on fire... when traveling in a vanegon I also carry spare valve cover gasket.

  • Just barely got Kermit back from the body shop this evening. Busy week coming up but hopefully make some progress soon...

  • insulated the rear doors and paneled them today. also started a bit of electrical work and a new air filter.



  • IMG_2252.jpg

  • @NickG Nice job, mon! 👍

    What's next, eh? Cannot tell if you got that fridge installed? Kinda thinking not yet. Pondering where/how you might fit it in. But I'm sure you've got it figured. 🐕

  • need to run all my wireing gangs do a bunch of insulation , install one more big window and start paneling. but I have to insulate and panel to mount my circuit breaker box but have to run wires before I panel so its a bit of a catch 22. been working too much and entertaining guests so not much happened last week. working photo gig today but will hit the lumber yard on the way to work and hopefully get a full day in tomorrow.

  • gally goes right under that small window in the last photo.

  • most of the wiring gangs run, pretty close to being able to clad this wall which opens up installing breaker panel and battery banks. as well as building the galley.


    first ceiling panel went in. fan tested good. slim can LED warm light also works well.

  • Finally finished the solar install last night. I was on the roof drilling holes with a headlamp... This was a huge hurdle for me as I am not an electrician. Batteries came up to full charge by 10am and it stayed of float charge all day despite being somewhat overcast and running the ceiling fan all day.






    I can see the light at the end of the tunnel! hopefully it is not on the front of a nightbound train.....

  • Nice! This progression is fun to follow. TFPU.

  • raining all day full dense cloud cover. Currently 13.4v coming in from the panels, batteries also @ 13.4v which has been steady since they came up to full charge yesterday.

  • @NickG

    • Perchance might there be room for a second roof vent rear of those photo cells? I like lots of air flow. Ideally I guess I'd shift all that stuff forward a mite.

    • Did you entertain portable tethered panels?

  • Just the one 14" roof vent. I have 2 windows with bug screens now and will have a 3rd 17X41" window with screen installed today if it stops raining... (not likely) I only have a single 9"roof vent in the astro but had windows with screens on both sides. pleanty of air flow .

  • batteries @13.57v 🙂

  • Aye. I like venting the attic nonetheless. I is strange that way. But it does look as if there would be room, no? So, my claustrophobic is all good.,...👍

    Now, what about batt use w/the refer installed, eh?

  • probably find out tomorrow. bringing it to work so will huck the fridge in tonight before I call it a day...

  • just been running lights all day today while working on insulateing and paneling the ceiling. last time I checked the battery was @ 13.7v Most definatly Not installing 2 vents. it's only a 140" wheelbase. 2 vents works well in the 170's from what I have seen.

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