This conversion has come a full circle. Back in the summer of 1969, during high school, I started my first business doing van interiors. My mother helped me sew the curtains and I did the handyman part.
It’s now 2019, 50 years later and I just completed building an interior and systems for my 1998 Ford van that I inherited from my father-in-law. This van has had a special life, from 1998 until 2013 it lived in Yosemite valley for 5 months out of the year. My father-in-law was a campsite host in the valley, he and his wife lived in two tents for the 5 months out of the year. One he called the garage and the other was their living quarters. The van would come back to San Diego and stay parked during the winters. He kept the van in mint condition and only had 60,000 miles when I inherited it.
With my background in building boats, I was able to build and install everything from my workshop. The interior was done in Bamboo and Teak, much like you would see in a yacht. There are many hatches and compartments to stow items. I added a 100 watt solar panel with charging system. It uses a deep-cycle marine battery that runs all of the systems, including a 1200 watt power inverter for 110 volt systems.
The woodworking was the fun part. Working with the teak and bamboo really brought back memories of my boat building days.
The roof rack, solar panel and awning were installed prior to building out the interior.
The electrical systems were installed, including a rear air conditioner, a 1200 watt inverter and solar charger.
Here are a few installation shots of the suspension being installed by Weldtec Designs located in El Cajon, CA
Finally all systems finished and ready for a tip to northern California and then onto Oregon to visit my daughter.