Building Your Own Camper Van

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Building your own camper van is a great way of creating your own custom made leisure vehicle without having to pay the high prices of professional conversions. Creating such a vehicle is not as difficult as you might think. Having your own camper van offers the freedom to go camping and exploring in luxury. It’s much more convenient that a car and tent or a caravan, as you can simply put everything away and drive to your next destination, without having to pack away a tent or prepare a caravan for the road.

Professional camper van conversions cost a lot of money because as well as the price of the empty vehicle, the conversion company have to cover the cost of the materials, the labour and make a profit. Because camper vans are sold in reasonable small numbers they are not mass produced and so prices are high. Even used models many years old still command a high price.

Building your own camper van is a great way of owning a camper van without having to spend a lot of money buying one. If you have DIY experience, have some mechanical experience or you are confident at constructing things you should be able to design and build a great camper van that is tailored for your needs. If you little experience at any of the fields don’t worry, you can still out together a good vehicle.

One of the most important factors is to establish your budget before your start. Don’t keep building until you run out of money, as the unfinished vehicles can sit on the drive for a long time waiting to be completed. Set you budget – an amount for the empty vehicle, an amount for the fittings you will fit, an amount for insurance, and an amount to at least give it a test run once it is finished.

The best home made camper van conversions are better than those one can buy professionally. With every luxury you could imagine, but they always cost a lot to build. However, I have seen excellent budget home conversions completed in a weekend, comprising of a futon in the back of the van, some simple furniture secured to the walls, curtains, a little carpet and a camping stove for cooking.

The first phase is to consider carefully what you will use the vehicle for, and who will use it. If you are going to occasionally go to beaches, lakes and parks and simply sleep in the vehicle you should buy a small van and keep the fittings simple. If you are going to use the vehicle for sports such as surfing or kayaking then you need to factor in storage for your equipment. If you have 5 children when obviously sleeping and seating quarters are you first priority. Choose which length of vehicle and what height suits you best.

How Camper Vans Surpass RVs

If you enjoy some of the comforts of home while exploring the great outdoors, camper vans offer an economical and dependable way to be comfortable and reach your destination with ease. Whether new or used, Class B camper vans are self-contained and offer all of the comforts of an RV without the hassles. Easier storage and drivability are two advantages of a camper van over an RV.

Cost is another advantage-not only do you save on fuel costs, you save on storage fees since Class B vehicles can be easily parked at your home, apartment or office. You can further cut costs by purchasing a used camper van.

Many people don’t know the difference between a Conversion Van, Camper Van, or Motorhome. Knowing the differences can help you make good decisions when buying a conversion van. The differences become important for practical reasons like:

  • Does my neighborhood association or city allow me to park my van at my home?
  • Do I need a special driver’s license?
    Camper Vans are not truly motorhomes in the traditional sense, but they can offer many of the features of a motorhome. Confused? We can look at a few specifics to clear up the differences!

Keep in mind there is no de facto industry definition-just guidelines. Let’s start with a basic Wikipedia definition of the terms Class A and Class B vehicles.

Class A
Constructed on a commercial truck chassis, a specially designed motor vehicle chassis, or a commercial bus chassis, a Class A motorhome resembles a bus in design and has a flat or vertical front end and large windows. Equipped with living space and amenities found in a home, they can be driven or pulled.

Class B Camper Van

Built using a conventional van chassis, using the original body or only small extensions to it, camper vans may be equipped either with a “pop-up” roof which is raised during camping or a fixed roof, either shared with the commercial van that forms the basis of the vehicle (commonly a “high-top” model), or as part of a custom coach-built body. A camper van is a self-propelled vehicle that provides both transport and sleeping accommodation. Also, in order to qualify as a Class B Motorhome the van must have built-in sleeping, eating, and bathroom facilities (including properly mounting fresh and grey water holding tanks).

Now that we have a basic visual difference (size and driven/pulled), let’s look at other varying factors between class A motorhomes and class B vans.

Features

Class A motorhomes (RVs) contain pretty much whatever features the owner desires. The interior design is limited only by your imagination-and your wallet. On the other hand, camper vans are smaller and, therefore, somewhat limited but not nearly as much as you might think.

For example, Class B vehicles usually have a small kitchen with a refrigerator (which is often operable by a choice of gas, battery, or electricity) and a two-burner gas stove and grill. They generally have dual-voltage lighting which can work from either a dedicated battery or from AC power, supplied at a campsite via a hook-up cable.

Many people who are interested in buying a Class B are surprised to find out they include a water heater, space heating and air conditioning, a toilet and even an internal shower.

Hiring the Camper Vans

The Camper vans and motor homes terms are generally used interchangeably. Many manufacturing companies do not differentiate between the two. Both these definitions refer to vehicles, which have built-in accommodation and transport facilities. Both of these vehicles are favored by the people, who want to travel to their holiday destination on road. These people are not interested in tying themselves to a particular hotel rather they want to go to the destination as far as their vehicle can take. There are many versions of these vehicles available. Some are for basic users with the fundamental facilities, while others are having luxurious facilities. Some of these luxurious facilities are handmade with over 18 years spent in making them.

Generally accepted definitions of the Motor Home and Camper vans observe subtle differences between the two. Few basic differences lie in the size, and the physical difference between the cab and the living quarters. In case of motor homes, the size is bigger and the cab and living quarters are physically separated. The living quarters contain the kitchen, bathroom and the sleeping space. While, these vans are smaller in size and the merged cabs with living quarters. The cooking, sleeping and washing facilities are of basic nature in these vans. These vans are available for purchase as well as people can go for renting them. The diehard fans of camper vans can also purchase the hand-made luxurious options, which can cost as high as £ 33,995.

The recent surge in the interest of customers to purchase camper vans has been attributed to the last budget by British Government. The government proposed a hike in the VAT for all products and hence the cost of these vans are expected to go high. Before, the budget is implemented; the vans manufacturers have come up with different attractive schemes to influence the different segments of the buyers. The options are available from basic to the luxury ones. The manufactures are setting up auto shows to generate the curiosity of the consumers who were so far not aware of such concept. All this resulted in the positive impact on the sales numbers of camper vans, motor homes and caravan vans.


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