• RV Life and Living

What Is A Camper Van Conversion?




When it comes to living on the road, one of the options that have grown in popularity is living the van life. Thus, I thought that I would take a look at how camper conversions work and what they are like.

What is van conversion? This is when you go ahead and take a van and change it into your ideal tiny living environment. This conversion can be as expensive as your budget allows as some conversions turn vans into mini-res, and others just have the basics that you need to live on the road.

I am sure that you have some more questions about camper van conversion. What is the best van for a camper van conversion? Do I need to hire someone to convert my camper, or can I do it myself? What are some of the basic materials that I will need for conversion? Is it better to go with a converted camper van or an RV? All of these are really good questions, and I will be answering them and possibly others throughout this article so that you can make the best design for your camper van that you can.

What is the best van for a camper van conversion?

You can hypothetically convert any van into a camper van if you needed to, but some models are just going to be better suited to it. Because of this being discerning, it might very well be required if you want to get the most out of your camper van conversion. From highly expensive brands like the Mercedes sprinter and budget models like the for transit, there are several types out there. You can even convert vehicles like ambulances and school buses to camper vans if you were so inclined.

Whenever you go looking at new vans, there are a ton of models to choose from. I will just be looking at the basic cargo van versions of all of these vehicles with that thought in mind. I may very well find that it might be essential to look at some of the higher end models of these vans in later articles, but for right now, we will just be getting back to basics for our information today.

Mercedes Sprinter

See the Mercedes Sprinter here.


The sprinter is a very common van that is used for a wide variety of work purposes. In our case, we will be using it as a base for any idea for a camper van construction. This will be looking at the basic cargo version of this, and we have a few of its basic stats right now.

The stock cargo version of the Mercedes sprinter van comes with a four-cylinder gas-based engine. This engine uses gas as its primary form, so you're going to have less distance as you traveling your van, but you have a wider variety of access to fuel. The engine turns out at 188 HP at 5000 RPM, giving you pretty good horsepower for what you're going to be traveling around with.

This van's overall basis is very good for camper conversion, and I will tell you why now. This vehicle's standing height is 67.7 inches, which means suspect that you have to be hunched over, and the average person could probably fit in the back of this comfortably. The cargo bed length is 132.9 inches giving you a basic if somewhat small bed to begin your construction. If you so choose and there are ways to upgrade some of these such as the bed length for next have cost.

The payload capacity for this bed is 3,920 pounds. This is a little on the light side for what most vans can hold but is good for starters. This means that you should have a very good starting number to begin planning out your camper van conversion.

I never think that I wanted to mention was that this very has a max tone capacity of 5000 pounds. This means that if you can't fit everything in your camper van conversion, you'll be able more than likely to put behind in a trailer behind you. These things can be anything from extra household essentials clothing even vehicles such as bikes or boats.

There are several extra features when buying a Mercedes printer van you should consider before you purchase. These extra features are such as the extra colors you can choose from when building your van, or they can be extra fee safety features built into the van. Some such features are a 360° vision and alert to assist in making sure that your eyes are always attentive to everything around you.

Dodge Transit


See the Dodge Transit here.

Next, we will be moving onto the Dodge transit van as your next possible based for your camper van conversion. The Dodge transit van is used the world over as both a workhorse and a family vehicle, given that it makes it a very excellent choice as a base for camper conversion.

When looking at the Dodge transit van's engine, we'll be looking at the cargo variant of the vehicle. This vehicle comes with two versions for attention: a 3.5 L PDFI V6 and the other is a 3.5 L eco-boost V6. The PDFI comes with 275 hp, whereas the eco-boost comes at 310 standards. Both of these are good numbers for moving your camper van around, but you should be aware that the 275 is related to the port direct fuel injection system, where as the 310 comes from a direct fuel injection system.

Depending on the model of cargo van that you choose, the height will range between 56 inches at 81.5 inches. Similarly, the cargo beds labeled range anywhere from 126 inches to 172.2 inches. The longer the be and the more that this will give you for room to spec out your cargo camper van version however you would like while still being mobile.

A few extra features are touted as being highly useful on the Ford Transit van that will also serve it well as a camper van. The first of these is the pre-collision of the emergency braking system. This system essentially allows the sensors onboard the van to do tax when it is going to collide with an object in front of that and apply the emergency brake system to write you from crashing. This is an excellent Safety feature that is becoming more common on both vans and other vehicles.

I never useful feature that comes with the Ford Transit van is the electric powered assisted steering, a steering system that adjusts the road to make it easier for you to drive. Given the way to your replacing in the back of your van and the safety of all your stuff in there, this is a very good tool to half particular if you experience driving a van.

Overall I like the Ford Transit van is a good solution for beginners looking for a van they don't want to entirely break their budget.


Ram Promaster


See the Ram Promaster here.


See the Ram Promaster specs here.

Last on this list will be the Ram Promaster, a vehicle with the lowest listing price in this article, coming in at only $30,000. This van has just as many great features as some of the others listed here. With that in mind, let's go ahead and start exploring.

The Ram Promaster, the ram pro master, comes with a V6 3.6 six Liter engine. This makes it not that much different from the other vans already listed in this article. The engine generates around 280 hp, providing you with more than enough power to get yourself and your camper van around wherever you need to go.

The interior of this van is well-suited to camper conversion like the others in this article, in both its space and its life that allows you to customize how you might need to. The camper's height will be about 5.6 feet tall, meaning that most people should be able to stand in it comfortably. The cargo bed life comes to about a full 8 feet, giving you a nice length to work with to build your camper van.

The camper van itself will have a pillow capacity of 4000 pounds. This gives you a lot of weight room to decide how to build the interior of your camper.

In addition to the impressive payload capacity of the Ram Promaster, it also allows for over 6000 pounds to be towed by the vehicle itself. This means that whatever you couldn't fit in the camper itself can be easily towed behind.

Well, the Ram Promaster comes with many of the basic safety requirements that we see in most vehicles today it does not have any advanced defense features in this basic version. But that is not to say that you could not upgrade these features to provide yourself with sensors for parking inclusion detection and perhaps even a rearview camera for backing up.

In the end, it is up to you to decide what kind of camper will work best for your camper van conversion, but in truth, while I like all of these bands, I wouldn't pick any of them. I would instead pick the one you like the motion this list and check out some of the more advanced vans that they have with better features that allow you to have a better living environment.

Should Convert my camper van or hire someone else to do it?

There is no direct right answer to this wherever you choose to hire someone to convert your camper, or do-it-yourself both are valid ways. You get a few bonuses with each version of this. A more professional standard if you hire someone else, but you get a more personal's touch if you do it.

If you hire a professional to convert your camper, you don't have to worry about a good deal of the legwork that I should go into conversion. You won't have to worry about measuring out counter space seating arrangement or any plumbing or electrical requirements. Most event conversion specialists have been doing this for a few years now and know exactly how to fit certain items into the small space. The downside of this is that, in many ways, these conversions will feel very standard.

The advantage to converting your camper Van yourself is that you did everything yourself. Every piece of wood, every piece of furniture Will all have been selected and fitted in by you. There's nothing that you won't know about your camper, and therefore you'll probably be better able to fix it while you were on the road. The downside of converting yourself is that even if you are good at woodworking or construction, there is usually a rough adjustment to this type of work. You will have to figure out how everything will fit into you in such a small space. Because of this, mistakes will usually be made during the first few weeks of the conversion. This will mean you will have to go back to the drawing board to reimagine your vision.

As you can see, there are distinct advantages and disadvantages to both of these options. If you would prefer a bit more reliability in your conversion, you may want to have someone else do it. If you prefer the more personal touch in a homey feeling, then you'll want to do it yourself. I just want you to know the work you'll be undertaking doing that, but it can be very rewarding.

What are some materials needed to convert a camper van?

There're a few essential materials that you'll want when converting a camper into a camper van. These are basic materials, such as kitchen materials, hygiene materials, and sleeping arrangements. There are also basic required materials for any step of the conversion. I will get into all of these right now, but we will go over just a few basics.

You will have to worry about the counter, the sink, and storage for basic kitchen supplies. In addition to these, you will also have to worry about how water will be dispersed for your kitchen. You can find small kitchen sinks on sites such as Amazon or custom camping sites. Kitchen counters can be made out of wood or any false material that you think is light enough to fit in the van. Ensure that you measure these materials so that you have enough storage space, but you are not intruding into every section of the camper.

Water very much factors into your kitchen and hygiene, and there are a few steps to gaining this. You will need a water storage tank of some kind, and then you will need an electric pump that we'll be at the pumps at the water for your plumbing. If you plan on spending, I'm on camping grounds. You may also want to build a water connection system so that you can access those amenities. If you feel that it is necessary, you may also wish to seek a small water heater for your use.

Sadly when it comes to camper van conversion bathrooms are usually left out. You may buy small portable potties online that can serve an emergency or regularly. You may also so find small portable outside showers do you can use while camping. Your best bet for hygiene, though, is to coordinate and make sure there are facilities wherever you're camping.

You're bed in a camper will be your next largest requirement, and because of that, it will take a significant portion of the room. Many people choose to convert a bed into a seating arrangement when not used in their camper van. Does allowing for the space to serve multiple purposes well being useful to the campers. This is not required, though, as you can just use your bed as a bed in the back of the camper.

As you can see, there are many materials that go into the conversion of the Camper Van, but they are essential if you want to be able to Live in it.

Is it better to go with a converted camper van or an RV?

As you can tell throughout this article, we have addressed space, cost, and living arrangements. Because of this, some might think that you should have an RV, the camper Van. This is based purely on personal preference, but there are advantages to having an RV over a camper Van.

The biggest advantage to having an RV over a camper van is space and comfort. An RV is designed to stay in for longer than a camper van, making a comfortable living arrangement in many cases. You have better plumbing set up in RV as well as better hygiene and general living facilities. The RV also contains far more space. Maybe you're not nearly as cramped as you live in.

When it comes to camper van living, the big event is mobility. A camper van can go anywhere a car can see whatever that is off-road or to the supermarket. This is an advantage that is not shared by RVs, as they are too large.

In the end, this is a choice that only you can make, but for my personal preference, I like an RV better. Camper vans are extremely cool and extremely cramped and require many of the people who live in them. Given a choice, the RV is more comfortable hence why I prefer it.

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