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  1. Default The Ultimate Road Trip Van

    So here's the deal, me and some friends have been on our share of roadtrips and we always made all these little customizations to our "mobile hut" as we liked to call it (cargo van) so now we're fully customizing it.

    Don't post here telling me that simple is better yadda yadda yadda. I don't care. What I want are wacky, cool, convenient, creative, or comfortable customizations to put in this project van.

    So here's a list of what I'm already planning on including:

    - TV

    - Full Laptop Setup w/ printer (Any ideas for mobile internet that will actually work?)

    - Bed

    - Plenty of storage

    - Microwave and Single electric burner

    - Mini-Fridge

    - Black and Red florescent lights

    - Plug in electric kettle

    - Solar Panels

    - Turn-by-turn GPS system

    - Fans

    - small Home Serround sound system

    - Rear view camera

    We're setting up the cargo space like an RV with fiberglass and wood construction, that part's already planned out. We're splitting electronics up into 3 catagories, always powered, run through a switchboard, and plug in with 2 three-prong sockets somewhere in the cargo space. Plus extra 12V plug ins.

    So c'mon people get creative, what would you put in your ultimate road trip van?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Western/Central Massachusetts

    Default Welcome!

    Welcome to the RoadTrip America Forum!

    It sounds just like an RV to me.

    You might want to look into upgrading the electrical system (alternator, battery, etc) in that van since it most likely wouldn't be able to power all that equipment as it stands now.

  3. #3

    Default Van mods

    Sounds like a fun project for even "funner" RoadTrips!

    Some of your planned installations are power hungry (microwave, kettle). I assume you're considering some kind of "plug in" capability such as an RV would have in order to power them. But, that limits you to rather more expensive hookup-provided commercial campgrounds or eliminates the ability to use those appliances in many National Forest/BLM or less-improved campgrounds. As long as you're modding a cargo van, I'd consider:

    Installing a 2" receiver style trailer hitch.

    Acquire a "Hitch-Hauler" type cargo carrying platform which the receiver hitch accomodates.

    Mount a 2,000 watt Honda generator to the hitch-hauler. Use the HH to mount a small plastic fuel container for the generator, too.

    Wire the interior with AC outlets sufficient to run the AC appliances you are contemplating, and just plan on running the generator during cooking times while stopped away from campground-style hookups. The generators are very quiet.

    Consider acquiring a combination jumpstart battery/air compressor/DC to AC inverter which can be recharged off of 12v outlets in the vehicle or from AC current provided by the generator. This will allow operation of the laptop through the inverter while under way w/out having to run the generator.

    The Hitch-Hauler can be modified to carry a nearly infinite variety of other gear: Perhaps a pair of large Series 27 deep-cycle batteries to provide interior/exterior lighting and inverter AC power during the evenings w/out having to run the generator. Perhaps some mountain bikes. Your imagination and the tongue weight limit inherent in the Hitch Hauler instructions are the only limits to what your "back-rack" can do for you. I've used one with a fairly large pickup-truck crossbed toolbox mounted to it in order to provide for lockable exterior cargo carrying capacity, and I mounted a pair of struts to it to carry bikes.

    With the above, you can lose the solar panels, have a versatile, convenient power supply, and have all the power you might need whether boondocking (camping w/out a developed site) or overnighting in a KOA.


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