converting a fridge box van

Discussion in 'Self-Build Motorhomes' started by eyrewave, Sep 6, 2016.

  1. eyrewave

    eyrewave Read Only Funster

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    Hello, ive just joined up to the site.

    I have converted a few vans in the past and am looking to complete another self build.

    I have a question in regards to base vehicles:

    A fridge box van (like the type used by supermarket delivery companies - sainsburys, ocado etc would to me seem to be excellent base vehicles. They are boxish in shape thus offer good space options. They are excellently insulated using styrofoam. They are very cheap for what you get i.e a 2011 sprinter for 5k (granted high mileage but could buy box separately and source low mileage van) the box can be transferred if there is a catastrophic failure with the vehicle. These at least are my observations. Am i missing something here as i can find no evidence on the internet of anyone converting one into a campervan?

    This is the type of vehicle i had in mind:
    http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Mercedes-...60e5787&pid=100034&rk=2&rkt=8&sd=201659167101

    I must be missing something but would be interested in peoples views? :)

    Thanks Tom
     
  2. vwalan

    vwalan Funster

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    they can make real nice conversions . many of my mates use prisin trucks same construction , but have windows and roof hatches and side doors and steps .
    but usually over 3,500kg gvw .
    fridge vans are heavy , check vehicle weight.
     
  3. JJ

    JJ Funster

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    Please don't park it next to me overnight with that bloody cooler thingy running... ;)


    JJ :cool:
     
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  4. jonandshell

    jonandshell Funster

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    That sort of thing seems popular with folks staying the season in ski resorts.
     
  5. eyrewave

    eyrewave Read Only Funster

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    Good point with the weight. Ocado box has the side door with step. I'm thinking big boat hatch over rear bed and a couple of small tinted windows. Could keep it quite stealthy..
    I guess would need Some reinforcement around cut out holes as well. Prison van option on first glance would look like more effort due to the internal room segregation and dismantling that would involve?
     
  6. vwalan

    vwalan Funster

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    it does take a few days getting rid of the cells . but you can reuse some of it as shower walls etc .
    depending on what windows you use no strengthening is needed . on prison vans they dont open but the roof hatches allow air to chimney out
    but fridge boxes do make good campers .
    just watch the weights . its easy to build what you want then find you cant carry anything in it .
    but let us know what you end up with.
     
  7. androidGB

    androidGB Funster

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    No personal experience, but did read once that fridge vans can suffer from very rusty floors. Maybe there are different types with separate bodies.

    Andrew
     
  8. scotjimland

    scotjimland Funster Life Member

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    as it has metal walls inside, presumably needs to be lined and also have a vapour barrier ?

    frankly, I think it would be a huge amount of work converting, more work than converting a standard panel van.. and will always look like a fridge van.. a big box with a few windows will never look like a motorhome..

    just my opinion..
     
  9. Jim

    Jim Ringleader

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    Whats a motorhome supposed to look like then Jim?
     
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  10. scotjimland

    scotjimland Funster Life Member

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    it was an MY opinion Jim.. not asking for a debate..

    you know exactly what I meant..
     
  11. tofo

    tofo Funster

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    Beauty is in the eye of the beholder

    But camp sight owners

    DONT always see YOUR vision as a camper van :groan::Eeek:

    :whistle2:
     
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  12. Jim

    Jim Ringleader

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    Not giving you one. My opinion; Some of the best motorhomes I've ever seen are a box with a few windows. We certainly don't need a "standard" that a motorhome must look like.
     
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  13. JJ

    JJ Funster

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    My daughter's "motorhome"...

    bedford-in-kent-orchard-rima-stacking-firewoodsmall.jpg

    A vehicle of immense beauty and character.

    JJ :cool:
     
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  14. Jim

    Jim Ringleader

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    I'd love one of these overland boxes with windows. Seeing more of them these days. We parked next to a superb one at a caravan club site in Lincolnshire, 26ft long and about 15ft high :)

    [​IMG]
     
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  15. eyrewave

    eyrewave Read Only Funster

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    My brother has one like top right (although pic might be unimog?). Iveco 4x4 cherry picker, then took off the cherry picker and got a Styrofoam box made up and bolted onto the chassis. It can go anywhere, but always costs a lot to fix as mechanics aren't familiar with the 4x4 variant. That's where I got the idea o using a fridge box, as it's made with the same material as the overland campers as pictured in your post. Realistically I don't need 4x4 for what I do it's not worth the expense. Cheers
     
  16. unimog

    unimog Funster

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    My box . It works for us but not sure what the reception would be like on some campsites IMG_0006.JPG
     
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  17. Rob Turner

    Rob Turner Funster

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    Fridge van floors can be coroded quite bad as previously mentioned. A lot of body builders still use wooden crossmembers and dont forget the damp issues that fridge vans can suffer with.
    Im only commenting as ive experienced it.
     
  18. eyrewave

    eyrewave Read Only Funster

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    Dis you add the box on? Is that made from Styrofoam? I'm not too bothered about what campsites think as I tend to only go to ones that allow fires these in turn are more wild and relaxed. I assume you don't do campsites in that because you can go wherever the hell you like ! :)
     
  19. eyrewave

    eyrewave Read Only Funster

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    Thanks Rob that's the sort of info I'm after:)
     
  20. jockaneezer

    jockaneezer Funster

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    Our Burstner has small windows and looks like they've just removed the "Group 4" stickers off a prison van, mind one or two on here think they're only fit for criminals :LOL:
     
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