Turning van into a home

A big empty van is no good, so I spent the next three days pimpin it out into my home to take me across the planet. For this I posted up in the Bunnings parking lot, which is Australia’s version of Home Depot. After getting the van for $AU4500, I made the goal to spend a limit of $AU500 on completely turning it into a campervan. Not keeping track, but just a figure to keep in mind. The first day I really didn’t get a whole lot done. I bought some lumber, tools, supplies, and started in on building the bed frame. I could probably have made it easier by watching some online videos or drawing a real nice plan, but it’s not my style. I made a few rough sketches on a piece of paper with some measurements, but I just had to start building. I had a vision in my head of what it would look like, so I would measure, cut, re-cut, and hammer together pieces of wood until it matched my vision. That first day I managed to get some pieces cut to size and a better idea of where it was headed.

On day two I really went at it. I spent most of the day sawing and hammering away until I had myself the frame I had visioned. Not drawing up a real plan and just winging it definitely has it’s drawbacks, like cutting things too short or cutting them too long, which happened about twenty times. That’s just how my brain works though, I just have to go after it. The van came with a thin foam mattress, and I was debating putting another one under it, so I went to Ikea. If you’ve ever been to an Ikea, you know the way they trap you inside the labyrinth of alleyways without an escape. Then when the only thing on your mind is escape, you stumble upon some things that you really could use. It worked on me. I went to look at mattresses, and left with a hundred dollars of everything I would ever need for my van kitchen. Also, I swung through Target and the Big W for a bunch of other random stuff that I needed for the van, including sheets, storage bins, pillows, and little necessities. As the sun went down, I had my plywood sheet cut to size and trimmed it up in the parking lot before sliding it into place. No time to secure it all in place, so I drove off with it sliding all around.

Day three it all came together. Everything was screwed and nailed into place, all my stuff organised into it’s spot, bed made, kitchen built, and all the little things checked off.
Supplies to build the bed, kitchen, and storage:
Tool kit (wrenches, screwdrivers, hammer, sockets, ect.)
Hand saw
One sheet of plywood
10 pieces of 35x70mm 2.4 meter pine lumber
Box of nails
Small box of screws
Drill (returned after use)
Small iso-butane stove
20L water tank
5 50L storage bins
1 28L storage bin
3 plastic baskets
All the bedding
38L safe
Black sheet to make curtains
Miscellaneous nick-nacks
By the end of the day I think all of the Bunnings staff was starting to wonder why I came in and out of the store thirty times a day. It was an incredible feeling to finish it, and to see my vision fulfilled. The bill for everything I did and put into it was $531. The cost of my new home comes to pretty much $AU5000. Now that that fun is over it’s time for the real fun to begin and see where this bad boy and I will end up.

About Trueworldtravels

Following my heart around the planet. Bringing to life the unique world around us through writing and photography.
This entry was posted in Australia travel, Converting to campervan, travel and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

1 Response to Turning van into a home

  1. ellengerl says:

    Looks like quite the custom digs!


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