Ralph n Bevs...... Panel Van Conversion

Nov 30, 2009
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Hi Funsters,

As the title says i am going to build a panel van conversion.
I am just in the early stages of choosing the right van to convert and fancy one of the new Ducato, Boxer type vans on the new facelift.

My question is... can anyone recommend the best engine for an extra long wheelbase high roof model ?

The van is 3.5 tonne max and 6.4m in length. Although these type of vans are having a facelift i believe
the engine is staying the same so many of you are already driving them.

Any advice on engine size and BHP please, and for the more mechanically minded any info on cam belt types eg......Belt or Chain

Many Thanks.....Ralph
 
Sep 26, 2013
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I bought and converted a new Boxer in 2012 and that came with the lowest powered 2.2 which is the 100. Plenty of power for me and I usually set of in 2nd gear. No doubt the more powerful ones would mean less gear changes on the hills but that's all. I also get 37/38 mpg.

Mike
 
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Ralph-n-Bev
Nov 30, 2009
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Good return on the fuel there Mike. Is that 100 bhp you are talking about ?
I am basing my dealer quotes on the 2.2 13o bhp.

Any reason why you went with the Boxer ?
Currently the Boxer quotes i received are up to 4.5k cheaper than the Ducato (y)

Thanks.....Ralph
 
Sep 26, 2013
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I have had Fiat based motorhomes and had trouble so I wanted a Peugeot.
Peugeot do a 100 and 120BHP while Fiat do the 130. I believe that the engine used by Peugeot is a Ford. I am very pleased with the Boxer as it's very quite and has a fairly smooth gear change.
I would have thought that they would all be a similar price but in 2012 I paid £18000 for it.

Mike
 
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Ralph-n-Bev
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Glad you like the Boxer....
I am definitely swaying that way as the price difference against the Ducato will be just under half the estimated build cost.
The Boxer price excluding Vat is around 19k pushed up with a big list of toys /gadgets and posey bits ;)

Ralph
 
Sep 26, 2013
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If you are doing your own conversion then have a look at SBMCC if you have not done already, plenty of advice available if you join.

Mike
 
Jan 28, 2008
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extra long high roof vans are heavier than the normal lomg semi highs so if your licence will let you you may need to up late it if you dont build a light conversion do you realy need the high top?
if yes then get the biggest engine model
i will also recomend the sbmcc a mine of info
my build blog here might give you some ideas http://building-renee2.blogspot.co.uk/
 
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Ralph-n-Bev
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Thanks Mike,
I have a shortcuts folder full of websites and forums based on self build projects although i haven't seen this one (y)
I have wanted to do this for a long time and have done lots of research on self build.
How much did you do yourself ?

I am very practically minded but i also know my limits. Being in the building trade i know the best trades to pull in for the bits i can't do.

Must say i'm not looking forward to cutting out my first window or rooflight :unsure:

Ralph
 
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Ralph-n-Bev
Nov 30, 2009
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Hi Mitzimad,
The van base we have in mind is the ELWB but i think the internal height as around 2.1m
The payload on the 6m version is 1525 kg and the 6.4 is 1440 kg not to worried about the loss but the space gained is precious when you are downsizing from a 7m Coachbuilt van.

Ralph
 
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DM14742

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Hi Ralph,
I'm hoping to do the same at the back end of the year but am looking towards Terry (Funster) to do it. I currently have a LWB high roof Ducato and was thinking about the same again although a Boxer or Relay would be fine. I am however considering an extra high roof as at 6 Ft I can't actually stand up straight in our current Van and am always banging my swede on cupboards etc. Its a consideration after having a coachbuilt with much more headroom and I'm surprised that hardly any PVC's are done on an extra high roof.
Cheers, Jez
 
Sep 26, 2013
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I did everything apart from the upholstery . As it happens I was in the building trade so I tackled everything although when finished I had the electrics and gas certified mainly for insurance purposes.
You would find the SBMCC website very useful as you would learn about things like gasdrops and insulation.
I would also recommend a visit to Magnums at Grimsby which is not too far from you, their warehouse contains everything that you will need.

Mike
 
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Ralph-n-Bev
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Hi There Jez,
Your just over the field from me ::bigsmile: were in Wrenthorpe Wakefield.
All this talk on roof heights has got me thinking about floor and ceiling materials used and overall finished heights.
As Bev`s around 5`11 i will have to check it out before we order the van.

We did have a nosey round IH van conversions the other day and their high roof conversions were just about ok for her but there will be no stilettos (shame that :D ) never mind at least i can still wear mine :LOL:

Ralph
 
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Ralph-n-Bev
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Joined SBMCC tonight Mike just waiting for the administrator to check me out :rolleyes:
Magnums sound good, can you get furniture board there ?

Ralph
 
Jan 28, 2008
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you can get everything at magnums also up your way is olearies
magnums do a discount for sbmcc members
i did every thing in my van except the upholstory and i bought the doors ready made from magnums
when working out hight remember you need insulation both under foot and over head
i would like to do a extra long extra high and raise the floor right through get propex and water tanks within the floor void but i think the amount of timber needed would make it heavy and probably need to uprate
if your thinking of uprating go for a maxi chassis its just a paper exercise up to 3.8 or as your buying new you maybe able to order it plated at 3,8 from the start
 

Minxy Girl

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There are a lot of pre-registered (new shape) vans out there with delivery only mileage for anywhere up to £6k less than buying new, some with lots of extra toys included ... it could save you quite a bit more dosh!
 
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Ralph-n-Bev
Nov 30, 2009
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you can get everything at magnums also up your way is olearies
magnums do a discount for sbmcc members
i did every thing in my van except the upholstory and i bought the doors ready made from magnums
when working out hight remember you need insulation both under foot and over head
i would like to do a extra long extra high and raise the floor right through get propex and water tanks within the floor void but i think the amount of timber needed would make it heavy and probably need to uprate
if you're thinking of uprating go for a maxi chassis its just a paper exercise up to 3.8 or as your buying new you maybe able to order it plated at 3,8 from the start
Sounds like i am in the right place for conversion part suppliers. I will have a ride out one day to see what they do...Thanks.
For the roof insulation i will be using Kingspan or Celotex type materials. The floor i am not sure yet as i don't want to build it up too much. The layout is going to be a u shaped lounge and i intend to raise the floor in this area for extra depth on the bed boxes and also give me a better route for services from one side to the other without having to duct out the ply flooring. I can maybe send a small amount of heat into this void to help in the winter. Just looking now for a 90 litre fully insulated underslung fresh water tank which i also intend to drop a 12v heating element inn.

In the sidewalls i will once again use 30mm Kingspan. Did you fit any type of vapour barrier on your conversion ?
The uprate sound like a good idea, what is the difference with a Maxi chassis ?

Ralph
 
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Ralph-n-Bev
Nov 30, 2009
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There are a lot of pre-registered (new shape) vans out there with delivery only mileage for anywhere up to £6k less than buying new, some with lots of extra toys included ... it could save you quite a bit more dosh!
Hi Minx

Had a look but they all seem to be white. Dont really fancy going down the respray route.
We would like a Metallic paint finish if you see anything on the extra long wheelbase as new as poss... please let me know (y)

Thanks.....Ralph
 
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Ralph-n-Bev
Nov 30, 2009
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Just checking out the different vehicle heights. I was going to go for 2.52m overall but if i go for the highest at 2,76
i can go for kingspan in the floor as well as the roof. I will try and get to see one to get a feel of it height wise.
If i go down this route i will probably need to uprate to 3.8 tonne.

This is why i asked the question on which base vehicle as i would like to get it right first time.
Thanks for all the input so far (y)

Ralph
 
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the biggest difference is the maxi comes with 16 inch wheels as standard and i belive some of the suspension is heavier duty
for tanks theres a company in hull with a fantastic reputation will build any thing you want just send them a drawing of what you want gf plastic fabrications theres a recent thread on smbcc one guy had his done and delivered in 3 days
i had mine made with hatches and no baffles so i could use normal tank connectors this meant i didnt have to specify where pipes would enter just drilled my own once i had them and pipework in place
 
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