Building an Adventure Van

Discussion in 'Shiny Things' started by Geek, Aug 12, 2011.

  1. Geek

    Geek oot & aboot

    Joined:
    Jun 8, 2003
    Oddometer:
    32,208
    Location:
    8000ft.
    Is that a fridge under the platform? How do you access it? I really appreciate you taking the time to share what you've done! :freaky
  2. Geek

    Geek oot & aboot

    Joined:
    Jun 8, 2003
    Oddometer:
    32,208
    Location:
    8000ft.
    Some boxes arrived today :evil

    Now to get them powder coated (the factory finish sure is pretty... but my brain tells me they are the wrong color).

    the mercedes alloy wheel pattern
    [​IMG]

    Center hubs, valve stems, and 24 new lugbolts
    [​IMG]

    I'm not quite sure what the finish is but to me it looks like they are painted and then clearcoated. The finish is PERFECT. I'm sure some day down the road I'm going to regret screwing with it...
    [​IMG]

    Hmmmmm... maybe I should bling it up and mask off the chrome mercedes emblems so they stay chrome after powder coating :rofl

    [​IMG]
  3. Geek

    Geek oot & aboot

    Joined:
    Jun 8, 2003
    Oddometer:
    32,208
    Location:
    8000ft.
    I'm still waiting on the four TPMS (tire pressure monitoring sensors) units... they should be here the middle of next week.
  4. crawdad

    crawdad Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Nov 11, 2004
    Oddometer:
    529
    Location:
    South Jersey
    Damn I like that. Thanks
  5. Sheep Shagger

    Sheep Shagger Show me your fleece

    Joined:
    Jul 30, 2007
    Oddometer:
    2,182
    Location:
    Where men are men and sheep get nervous
    Yup, fridge powered from a 3rd battery and solar panel on the roof.
    It's built on sliders (draw rails) designed for a fire truck. The rails are held in place using 2 motorcycle seat catches at the back, stop it moving and denting the door while driving. I made the catches at the rear so it was nice and clean at the front.
    Friend at MotionPro made a special cable that has one pull knob (motorcycle choke knob) that pulls both catches evenly. I used two as I figured it would need it, but since building it, it would only need one.

    Welded up a basic metal frame to hold the sliders and platform, KTM 950 se seatcatches at the rear. This is the only thing bolted to the van floor, rest of the finished framing is free floating.
    [​IMG]

    Closeup of one of the seat catches. I turned the pin on a lathe, rest is standard parts.
    [​IMG]

    Better view of the rear.
    [​IMG]


    Metal frame bolted to the floor, all the wood framing is build around it. Wood frame is coated in truck bed liner and has ally edging.
    [​IMG]


    The morotcycle choke knob. (Beer label)
    [​IMG]

    So you just pull the beer choke knob to release the catches, and pull the fridge out.
    [​IMG]

    And here it is open.
    [​IMG]
  6. KrustyKustom

    KrustyKustom Lets Go....

    Joined:
    Dec 9, 2005
    Oddometer:
    657
    Location:
    Desert-away from people...
    I stopped by Goodwill yesterday and got a 64" long love seat for $39 that fits perfect behind the front seats and in front of the left side wheel well. It's kind of "poor white trash" looking but will work for now for the dogs or transporting wife and friends back there.


    Wow, I think I dropped that loveseat at Goodwill last week.....!!!
  7. Sheep Shagger

    Sheep Shagger Show me your fleece

    Joined:
    Jul 30, 2007
    Oddometer:
    2,182
    Location:
    Where men are men and sheep get nervous
    Going through the old pic's of the fridge I found something else that you might be interested in. While going camping, I would always forget some of the basics. Axe / decent Knife or Flashlight. So I made a new panel on the inside of the back door to hold these items (there is also a small saw in the base of the axe), along with a cubbyhole to dump other crap.

    [​IMG]

    So I don't look like a complete tard if loading something in the back in a parking lot, the wife made a cover for it with poppers.
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    This again was a quick prototype that has become so useful that I haven't bothered to change it.
  8. Sheep Shagger

    Sheep Shagger Show me your fleece

    Joined:
    Jul 30, 2007
    Oddometer:
    2,182
    Location:
    Where men are men and sheep get nervous
    Most factory alloys are painted, many people think it's a natural ally finish, but it's not. You won't regret getting a quality powder coat job done either. Best thing for them.
    From my very very limited knowledge of coating, make sure the shop pre-heats them before applying powder, that will get rid of any imperfections/gas bubbles in the casting.
  9. Mr. J

    Mr. J Banned

    Joined:
    Oct 8, 2007
    Oddometer:
    9,655
    Location:
    northeast coast
    this is very trick. have you posted it at EXPO? all those dogs got engles
  10. Mr. J

    Mr. J Banned

    Joined:
    Oct 8, 2007
    Oddometer:
    9,655
    Location:
    northeast coast
    should soak up the leaks from the skylight quite nicely.
  11. ducnut

    ducnut Long timer

    Joined:
    Feb 9, 2009
    Oddometer:
    3,321
    Location:
    central IL
    Definitely pop out the emblems. Coating or painting them looks half-assed. That's one thing high-end shops do on high-end, aftermarket wheels is get matching emblems for the center caps. It gives the wheels a finished look and not look aftermarket. You've got a nice, high-end van. So......... JMHO, of course. :wink:
  12. vtwin

    vtwin Air cooled runnin' mon

    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2005
    Oddometer:
    7,788
    Location:
    NorCal
    [​IMG]


    What goes in the holster?
  13. a1fa

    a1fa Throttle Jockey™

    Joined:
    Nov 1, 2006
    Oddometer:
    13,919
    Location:
    Arkansas
    Judging by everything else, a Glock 22. :D
  14. Sheep Shagger

    Sheep Shagger Show me your fleece

    Joined:
    Jul 30, 2007
    Oddometer:
    2,182
    Location:
    Where men are men and sheep get nervous
    :D Very close, XD9 or XD45. I didn't want to get into a discussion on what/where/how to carry, so I left it out of the description before. But I will add this is not the normal place it resides, just a place to put it while at a camp fire etc.
  15. mark883

    mark883 and the mysterians

    Joined:
    Feb 16, 2007
    Oddometer:
    1,612
    Location:
    Buckeyeland
    Tom-

    Instead of messin' around looking for Sprinter-duty furniture, you could be spending part of your Labor Day weekend doing this:

    [​IMG]

    Hey! Its my Sprinter catching some air!

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    You probably would have made it to about BFE Illinois or Iowa, where a tow truck and a Freightliner dealer would have then had their way with you.

    Oh, and yes, it is remarkably clean underneath.

    Its what I believe to be a purely spontaneous latent defect. '03 Sprinters are know for suploding the torque plate. Such is life..
    :bluduh

    BTW- is this now a support thread for motorcyclists with a Sprinter addiction? More Geekin', please. Although I now think my budget is shot for a while....
  16. Otis the Sasquatch

    Otis the Sasquatch Long timer

    Joined:
    Jun 2, 2009
    Oddometer:
    1,198
    Location:
    Kirkwood, MO

    This picture reminds me of something....
    I'm NOT a Safety Nazi, but I want to remind everybody to THINK about what stuff you put in the back of your van and where it will go in an accident. Make a thoughtful decision about what you put in the back and how well it's secured.:deal

    As I mentioned earlier in this thread, I used to be a floor covering installer. I never wrecked any of my vans, (just cars and motorcycles :lol3) but I have seen some of the other guys work (and play) vans after crashes. And it ain't pretty.


    I only remember of one fatality, and that guy would have died even if all his stuff hadn't flown into the back of his head, But I have seen many injuries that could have been avoided by the owner taking the time to Load Thoughtfully or Mount his stuff Securely.
    Trim metals into the back of the head. A flying tool box in a roll over that broke a guy's arm, etc.
    Or my friend Dave who got run off the road by a drunk running from the cops. He had one of those "slow motion" -effect moments when his work van hit the ditch and rolled. He remembers seeing his 75# solid steel floor roller suspended in mid-air behind and between him and his 13 yr old son :eek1 who he was driving to baseball practice after work. Thankfully, both were belted in, and the roller didn't land on either of them.
    The roller had been bungee'd in place to keep it from rolling around. Now it's strapped in with a ratchet style motorcycle tie down. He said, "Maybe I should CHAIN it down!":lol3
    Oh, and his new work van has a Headache Cage behind the seats.

    I was lucky many times before I saw the light.
    Like the time I put a nice armchair in one of my work vans for a "third man" seat. I would have it where the above love seat is when the carpet or sheet vinyl was in the center aisle up against the engine cover, then on the way home we'd put it between and behind the fixed seats.
    One day I decided to ride the third seat home and make the Apprentice drive. All the better to kick back, put my feet up on the doghouse and drink beer.:D Until the apprentice slammed on the brakes to avoid a rear-end collision.
    We all laughed as I peeled myself off the windshield/dash/doghouse. Then I grabbed another beer, and took the Shotgun Seat. (bosses' privilege dontcha' know:evil).

    So as you mount or load stuff... THINK about it.

    Motorcycle, w/ 9 gallons of gas, in the box with you?

    Hey, I'm a Libertarian. It's Your Call.
    But remember..... SECURE YOUR LOAD.









    (This has been a Public Service Announcement from the Otis Institute for Van Safety. For more info, dial 1-800-IFCKDUP :D)
    Otis










    .
  17. Otis the Sasquatch

    Otis the Sasquatch Long timer

    Joined:
    Jun 2, 2009
    Oddometer:
    1,198
    Location:
    Kirkwood, MO
    You're welcome. I hope you don't think I was wagging my finger at you or anyone else here.

    We're all adults.

    Kinda' sorta'.:D




    Carry on!
  18. Mr. J

    Mr. J Banned

    Joined:
    Oct 8, 2007
    Oddometer:
    9,655
    Location:
    northeast coast


    odd; i don't remember passing the exam ...
  19. kobudo28

    kobudo28 Banned

    Joined:
    Sep 22, 2005
    Oddometer:
    5,888
    Location:
    New Hampster. Live, Freeze and Ride.
    You were out sick that day? :D :dunno
  20. Geek

    Geek oot & aboot

    Joined:
    Jun 8, 2003
    Oddometer:
    32,208
    Location:
    8000ft.
    Trim matching grey or black?
    Gloss? Satin? Matte?

    :scratch

    [​IMG]