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Open Roads Forum  >  Class B - Camping Van Conversions  >  DIY

 > My Chevrolet Express van Class B- camper

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Black'95

South Dakota

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Posted: 02/08/21 05:15pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Seon wrote:



Here's the link to the thread I started. Thx.

http://www.rvforum.net/SMF_forum/index.php/topic,130161.0.html


drsolo wrote:

My RVan link

here is link to my RVan


Thanks for the links, I look forward to following your posts.

J herb

So. Oregon

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Posted: 02/12/21 08:33am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

drsolo wrote:

My RVan link

here is link to my RVan


Checked out your van link and your van looks good and it's 29 years old, I see a few of the same type of GM vans around here and they are used all the time. It's nice that you can remove things to go get things that you need to do projects around the home. I can take one cabinet out with just removing 4 screws and that give me extra room to put bigger things into the van. I have a 4'x8' utility trailer for bigger and heaver things for home projects.


J herb


drsolo

Milwaukee

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Posted: 02/12/21 08:58am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

J herb wrote:


Checked out your van link and your van looks good and it's 29 years old, I see a few of the same type of GM vans around here and they are used all the time. It's nice that you can remove things to go get things that you need to do projects around the home. I can take one cabinet out with just removing 4 screws and that give me extra room to put bigger things into the van. I have a 4'x8' utility trailer for bigger and heaver things for home projects.


We sold our rarely used 4x8 when there really wasnt anyplace we could stash it without it getting stolen.
Only the 3 drawer over the frig is screwed to the wood molding at the top of the wall/ceiling. The microwave is screwed to the counter, but the counter cabinets are not screwed down. They pack pretty tightly to each other. The drawers have metal tabs that dangle and stop the drawers shooting out when rounding a corner. We dont make sharp corners or sudden stops tho.. LOL.
The van is rusting and I have gouged it, it has dents and dings. Dan has promised to work on the rust while we are down here. We are planning on getting a newer little bit bigger van, we gotta watch cause they got tight rules what can be parked on the street.


Ingrid and Dan Retired teachers from Milwaukee, WI
1992 GMC Vandura conversion


Black'95

South Dakota

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Posted: 02/13/21 03:16pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

With the weather outside hovering around -2 to -20 degrees F, I am spending most of my time in my heated wood shop and my heated garage. I started and completed a modification to the TV mount in my DIY camper van. I created a new wooden mount that utilized the top bracket of the seat belt, the nearest cup holder, and the kitchen unit.

I enjoy fabricating things from scratch without any plans and this shot shows the basic wood frame. I was not happy with the old mount because it placed the TV to close to my sink and faucet. Now it is moved one window towards the back.
[image]

This picture show the old mounting with the wedge removed that previously slid down between the window lower plastic and the kitchen unit. It squeaked and was not a very solid mounting. I mounted the hinge unit to the new mount, painted the wood flat black, and covered all surfaces that might touch any part of the van with sticky back felt. Now the TV is mounted much more solidly and still hinges out so we can watch the news in bed.
[image]

[image]
I mounted a hinge and bracket so the TV can fold out for viewing from the bed area.

I utilized the bottom frame board to mount my indoor/outdoor thermometer and a small container for the remote control. Not something new for my DIY van camper, but an improvement of the old.

* This post was edited 02/14/21 02:46pm by Black'95 *

Black'95

South Dakota

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Posted: 02/24/21 09:34am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I am always looking to repurpose things laying around my garage. We had been using a little floor electric heater to heat the van when camping during colder weather. I had this car heater laying around from my wife's old Jeep Cherokee that we used to heat the car's interior before she went to work each morning during the winter months. Now that she is retired and the Jeep has been upgraded to a 2018 Equinox the heater is no longer used. I created a mount from plastic and wood that I mounted to one of the headliner attachment points off to one side partially over the kitchen unit so we should not be bumping our heads on it. Also it is easily removed by sliding it out of the mount. We plan on trying it out camping in the next week or so to see if we like it better than the floor heater which seemed to be in the way some of the time. If it passes the "wife" test, I will paint the mount flat black like the rest of my DIY stuff in the van. This little heater is the type they sell in North Dakota and Canada to warm up cars in the morning before you drive to work. In fact, I bought it in Grand Forks, ND while visiting my son who worked there for a time.
[image]

* This post was edited 02/25/21 08:44am by Black'95 *

J herb

So. Oregon

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Posted: 02/24/21 09:11pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

HI Mike!
good timing on the new post, I was just going to ask you what you used to heat your van with when you are winter camping. Is that little heater AC or DC ?

We camp at State Parks in the winter and they all have electric and we have a real nice 750 to 1500 watt elect heater with a fan and thermostat and it does a good job keeping the van warm.
We also carry a Buddy Heater for backup if the electric went down.

drsolo

Milwaukee

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Posted: 02/25/21 08:15am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

J herb wrote:

HI Mike!
good timing on the new post, I was just going to ask you what you used to heat your van with when you are winter camping. Is that little heater AC or DC ?

We camp at State Parks in the winter and they all have electric and we have a real nice 750 to 1500 watt elect heater with a fan and thermostat and it does a good job keeping the van warm.
We also carry a Buddy Heater for backup if the electric went down.


The heating strip in my roof mount AC doesnt heat enough when temp gets near freezing so I carry a quartz 400/800 heater. I am somewhat obsessive about being warm but havent needed it in the van, but, at our campground my husband uses one to heat the trailer since we arent charged for electricity but have to fill our own propane tanks for the furnace. The furnace is noisy as it cycles on and off, the quartz heater is silent.

J herb

So. Oregon

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Posted: 02/25/21 08:31am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

We camp at State Parks in the winter and they all have electric and we have a real nice 750 to 1500 watt elect heater with a fan and thermostat and it does a good job keeping the van warm.
We also carry a Buddy Heater for backup if the electric went down.

The heating strip in my roof mount AC doesnt heat enough when temp gets near freezing so I carry a quartz 400/800 heater. I am somewhat obsessive about being warm but havent needed it in the van, but, at our campground my husband uses one to heat the trailer since we arent charged for electricity but have to fill our own propane tanks for the furnace. The furnace is noisy as it cycles on and off, the quartz heater is silent.

drsolo,
We have the heat strip on our trailer and it's does a good job.
The portable elect heater that I got to use in the van works great to keep the van warm even down to freezing temps. We don't like keeping in too warm when sleeping so we set the thermostat to around 60, we also have a smoke alarm in the van.

Black'95

South Dakota

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Posted: 02/25/21 08:40am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

J herb wrote:

HI Mike!
good timing on the new post, I was just going to ask you what you used to heat your van with when you are winter camping. Is that little heater AC or DC ?


When I built my kitchen unit for the van I built into it a 110 volt wall thermostat and connected the 110 volt outlet below it.
[image]

I have been using a little 1500 watt floor model of heater. This heater utilizes my wall mount thermostat otherwise it would run constantly. It is in the way on the floor sometimes, especially when I have to get up in the middle of the night. When it is cold out we always camp where we have an electrical hookup. As long as I had this little 900 watt heater laying around the garage, I decided to get it a try on our next camping trip which will probably be later this week. This heater doesn't have a built in thermostat either so my wall mount one will be needed for it. Both heaters are 110 volt.
[image]

* This post was edited 02/25/21 08:59am by Black'95 *

J herb

So. Oregon

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Posted: 02/25/21 08:54am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Black'95 wrote:

J herb wrote:

HI Mike!
good timing on the new post, I was just going to ask you what you used to heat your van with when you are winter camping. Is that little heater AC or DC ?


When I built my kitchen unit for the van I built into it a 110 volt wall thermostat and connected the 110 volt outlet below it.
[image]

I have been using a little 1500 watt floor model of heater. This heater utilizes my wall mount thermostat otherwise it would run constantly. It is in the way on the floor sometimes, especially when I have to get up in the middle of the night. When it is cold out we always camp where we have an electrical hookup. As long as I had this little 900 watt heater laying around the garage, I decided to get it a try on our next camping trip which will probably be later this week. This heater doesn't have a built in thermostat either so my wall mount one will be needed for it.
[image]


Mike, a nice setup to have as you can use a heater that doesn't have a thermostat, if needed can you run both heaters on low at the same time?
Hope that you are able to go camping soon, we are trying to go but we have been having a lot of rain in the valley and snow in the mountains for the last few weeks.

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