Jon’s camper/MTB conversion

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Jonhall
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Joined: Sun Nov 07, 2021 7:17 am
Engine size/power: 2.0 TDI (140bhp)
Location: Wiltshire

Re: DIY Maxi camper/MTB conversion

Post by Jonhall »

Well spotted I excitedly took pictures before I calibrated the battery monitor

Just got back from five days camping in the Lakes and it was really useful to have such a clear readout of the battery status, and interesting to see how it was charging while driving. It’s confirmed that (for now) we probably don’t need a solar panel.

Not that I’ll save any money, it’ll just go on something else for the van


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Darkblade
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Engine size/power: 1.6 CR TDI (102bhp)
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Re: DIY Maxi camper/MTB conversion

Post by Darkblade »

@Jonhall awesome additions to the van, I've been looking into similar for mine.

Did you make the rear furniture or was it a system?

If you made it yourself what runners did you opt for your kitchen?

Great work!

Silver 2012 Caddy, 1.6 TDI

Silver 2012 Caddy, 1.6 TDI (102) => remapped to 150bhp, Ohlins Coilovers, Golf R Mark VII seats, Aston Martin brakes, Compomotive Motorsport wheels
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Jonhall
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Posts: 168
Joined: Sun Nov 07, 2021 7:17 am
Engine size/power: 2.0 TDI (140bhp)
Location: Wiltshire

Re: DIY Maxi camper/MTB conversion

Post by Jonhall »

Thanks [mention]Darkblade [/mention]Image

I built the furniture myself as I couldn’t find a kit/system that did exactly what we wanted. It’s definitely not as nicely finished as a CNC cut kit but I’m pretty pleased with it, especially as the only cost was about £200 of materials and a £25 pocket hole joinery kit (as opposed to £400 plus for a self-assembly kit).

Drawer runners are these:

https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B085933PJD? ... b_ap_share

Various extensions available, I used 1,000mm for the kitchen drawer and they are seriously sturdy.

I also used the lashing ring threads in the van floor to secure the unit containing the drawer to make sure it stays put with the drawer at full extension/in use Image


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sim
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Re: DIY Maxi camper/MTB conversion

Post by sim »

Clean job on the build!
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Jonhall
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Posts: 168
Joined: Sun Nov 07, 2021 7:17 am
Engine size/power: 2.0 TDI (140bhp)
Location: Wiltshire

Re: DIY Maxi camper/MTB conversion

Post by Jonhall »

Got a new tent to go alongside the van and gave it a try over the long weekend. We originally tried an Olpro drive away one, but couldn’t get it to fit nicely enough on the side of the van (to be fair, the Caddy is just outside of Olpro’s recommended height range).

So we now have the ubiquitous Decathlon special, and will keep the original Reimo canopy (in the earlier photos) for use with the awning rail too Image

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Hopefully, we’ll have the cushions and covers back from the upholsterers soon as the double Thermarest is on its last legs!


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Jonhall
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Posts: 168
Joined: Sun Nov 07, 2021 7:17 am
Engine size/power: 2.0 TDI (140bhp)
Location: Wiltshire

Re: DIY Maxi camper/MTB conversion

Post by Jonhall »

Finally have the proper cushions!

Really pleased with these and glad we didn’t attempt ourselves as we would never have got anywhere close to the standard of work.

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And now that box is ticked, the van is booked in for tow bar fitting Image


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Jonhall
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Posts: 168
Joined: Sun Nov 07, 2021 7:17 am
Engine size/power: 2.0 TDI (140bhp)
Location: Wiltshire

Re: DIY Maxi camper/MTB conversion

Post by Jonhall »

Tow bar now fitted: I went for the detachable Westfalia one with 13-pin electrics in order to use my existing bike rack.

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Jonhall
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Joined: Sun Nov 07, 2021 7:17 am
Engine size/power: 2.0 TDI (140bhp)
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Re: Jon’s camper/MTB conversion

Post by Jonhall »

We’re now up to 20 nights and counting in the Caddy! Having the proper cushions for sleeping had made a world of difference and thanks to the curtains/blinds and insulation, it’s very dark and quiet too which makes for a very good night’s sleep Image

We’ve also eventually got round to fitting new tyres… I was after something all-terrain(ish) but still relatively quiet and efficient on the road, so settled on some Yokohama Geolandar G900’s.

215/60r16 95V on the standard VW ‘Bendigo’ wheels, which are 6.0x16” ET50.

Slight increase in tyre size over the standard 205/55r16’s, but look much better (in my opinion) when it comes to arch gap etc. They’re about a 5% increase in diameter, but speedometer now reads spot on.

Also managed to get a matching part-worn Yoko with 7mm tread from eBay to go on the spare Image

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Sue2022
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Re: Jon’s camper/MTB conversion

Post by Sue2022 »

Great work Jon,
I am just starting on my build and your ideas and work have been very helpful.
Thanks
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fazer909
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Re: Jon’s camper/MTB conversion

Post by fazer909 »

Cracking build mate ! well done !
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Re: Jon’s camper/MTB conversion

Post by Sue2022 »

I think I saw in one of your posts that your units are easily removeable and held in by just a few bolts. I am looking to do something similar. Can you please explain/show how you did that?
Thanks
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Jonhall
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Engine size/power: 2.0 TDI (140bhp)
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Jon’s camper/MTB conversion

Post by Jonhall »

Hi Sue,

The furniture units are bolted to the 12mm plywood floor, which in turn is bolted into the van using the existing threads for the tie-down points (as I have no use for the four tie-down points in the floor).

This means the floor isn’t going anywhere but remains removable for future service/replacement, without making any additional holes in the floor of the van itself.

I used T nuts (or star nuts) from the underside of the ply floor to provide a thread for the bolts which hold the units in place. You could also use a threaded insert (like a furniture maker might use), but the T nuts seemed an easier option for me.

I used M6 T nuts and countersunk bolts so there’s nothing to snag in the base of the units.

For the drawer unit, I also went straight through the plywood floor and into the tie-down threads with some longer bolts at the ‘front’, to give extra security when the drawer is fully extended.

Hope that helps!


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Sue2022
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Re: Jon’s camper/MTB conversion

Post by Sue2022 »

Thanks Jon,
That's a great help.
I had wondered about T-Nuts instead of drilling through the metal floor of the van, as I have seen for some of the pods. Using the existing Tie-Down threads should also provide some extra strong anchorage.
Thanks again.
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Jonhall
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Posts: 168
Joined: Sun Nov 07, 2021 7:17 am
Engine size/power: 2.0 TDI (140bhp)
Location: Wiltshire

Jon’s camper/MTB conversion

Post by Jonhall »

The previous owner of mine went a bit mad with screws through the floor to secure their ply lining, so I didn’t want to make any more holes in the floor!


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User avatar
Jonhall
100BHP+
Posts: 168
Joined: Sun Nov 07, 2021 7:17 am
Engine size/power: 2.0 TDI (140bhp)
Location: Wiltshire

Jon’s camper/MTB conversion

Post by Jonhall »

We decided to upgrade to a new awning, really pleased with this one! Should avoid the problem of pooling water we had every time it rained (remember that, you know the water that falls from the sky?!) with the much more basic one we had before.

I like the look of some of the inflatable canopies you can get now, but none of them pack away as small as a ‘poled’ one…

This one’s a Reimo Palm Beach 2-2.6, designed for SWB Transporters. The roof of the Caddy Maxi definitely isn’t as straight, but it seems to fit just fine!

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