We love our venerable E-series Ford Van, and we can't afford the big Transit of young Tik Tok van lifers. We did our build on the cheap; let us help you do the same!
Designed to be useable from either inside or outside of the van.
2 1/2 gallon fresh and gray tanks with drop down food prep board..
Designed to fit perfectly. Tank for "number 1" directly underneath the van.
Design for a 400 watt solar system with 100ah lithium house (and trolling motor) battery.
We love our robust twin I beam Ford e-series Econoline van. My design build was based on these parameters: Support 2 people completely independent for 1 week off grid. Have sleeping not be at the back or on the street side (driver's side) for crash protection when stealth camping on a road. Maybe not very likely to need to be a concern, but it was a design parameter I chose. Have the kitchen on a back door that can be used completely inside, but primarily intended to be used with the doors open and cook from outside. I can tell you I stealth camped at the top of Nob Hill in San Francisco for several days and very successfully cooked inside with the doors closed. The composting toilet was a must have to share the van with a woman, and in any case storing a week's worth of pee in pee bottles takes up far too much space. A tank underneath for #1 and a urine diverting composting toilet is what I wanted, but there is no do-it-yourself or commercially available product that fit the very tight space I wanted it to fit in. I certainly did not want to deal with the frequent gross attention a cassette toilet needs, and they too will not fit our small space. My toilet takes up very little realestate, and yet provides the comfort of a cushion toilet seat just like at home.Van life living is a choice for some of us that want our own little apartment along with us wherever we go. I love not ever having to find a public bathroom. I love being able to pull over and take a nap, or spend a day, wherever I happen to be. But it is always in the back of my mind that this could become a permanent thing with very little notice. I have wanted to hurry through my build as quickly as possible so as much of it is done as can be in case I need the van to live in now.
Michael's background is in Mechanical Design, and is marginally self employed running a webserver and doing website work. Michael spends every rare extra money in pursuit of fly fishing beautiful wild trout mountain streams, sharing the night sky with giant telescopes, flying slope sailplanes, and the shooting sports.
Michael says that with his miniature stealth hotel room on wheels, everywhere he goes he's already home.
The plans are 8 1/2 x 11 and are downloadable as pdf's. Included is a recommended cut sheet and some 3 view drawings. The value in what I have done is the dimensions. Each of these designs took significant time making models and tweaking numbers. I designed around the absolute maximum (or minimum) dimensions to fit our van's exact space. Any of you are fully capable of doing the same, but if you should want your kitche/sink/toilet/solar basically laid out like I did, these plans will save a ton of time.
I want to help you speed up your Ford Econoline E-series van build. I rushed through mine, but it takes so much time to design out each aspect that it's still taken me three years, and I'm not quite done. I am offering up my design efforts in hopes it will help speed up your build process.
I don't know about you, but I feel like my van could become my permanent living situation with fairly short notice. I have wanted to get my build done as fast as possible so as much of it was done whenever the point is reached where it becomes my home. If you are kinda feeling that way too, I hope my plans help accelerate you into a van situation that is comfortable and capable enough to be a home. Except way smaller :-)
Stay tuned! There are more designs to come!