2013 ford transit connect or "our minimalist camper"

lqhikers

Adventurer
this build will be the other extreme.
last build i posted was of our 2012 4x4 tiger bengal,which has moved to a new
owner.
since we are not in a position for extended trips at this time of our life
we still needed something to get away for a few days at a time as a fan of
over the pond small campers i thought i would dive in with my own example.

so here goes.

starting with 2013 ford transit connect xlt. picked this model for size,milage,
interior height. had my doubts but after spending time at dealership with
tape i saw that it would work.

i'm 6'!" wife is 5"6" both normal weight do not recommend for anyone larger!
we have spent a lot of time together in small tents so we knew we could get along
just fine in our new camper!

will add pictures as time allows.

this is what we started with.

Les,lqhikers
 

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lqhikers

Adventurer
"Minimalist" continues

when i decided to go basic what would basic be?

here is what i came up with.
1. able to sleep inside.
2.able to have use of porta-potti inside if needed (traveling stopping at walmarts,rest areas,
rain, snow,cancel snow we don't do snow anymore!etc.
3. able to have 2 spots to set inside if we want to be inside.
4.sink and holding tank for brushing teeth, clean up etc.
5. able to make coffee inside,so i have a drug habit get used to it.
6.enough power to have plenty of storage for all our needs lights,chargers, fans,
etc.
7.gear storage,supply storage,water storage.

so with this list i started.

ford transits come with two sliding side doors.we ordered ours with no windows
as i planned on adding two rear windows that open with screens for air flow.

on the drivers side i built a storage compartment that hold the second battery
also holds tool box, awnings,(side and rear) plus misc.

pictures show side door closed and open with battery/storage.

rear shows windows installed.

more to follow.

Les,lqhikers
 

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lqhikers

Adventurer
transit mods continue.

to control battery output i used a west mountain power isolator that turns off when it
senses that transit battery is not charging. this then feed a normal fused panel,basic
works fine. mounted on side of van and put a panel to protect when loading gear.

platform for bed was just 2 -1"x2" thin wall tubing with 3/4" angle to support bed base.
again these panel lift up for access to storage area if needed.

we use 2 thermarest matt on platform under sleeping bags as you can see when set up
there is over 6'8" length with seats slid forward.the height of platform lets you set up when
in use,one of reasons we chose the transit inside height is more than our 2008 ford van was.

more to follow.
Les,lqhikers
 

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lqhikers

Adventurer
reply to flagster

we have not put many miles on it as we just picked it up 3 weeks ago
and have been working on pretty much since.

but we did do a 2 day trip to San Diego,left La Quinta went to Borrego Springs
spent night in Culp valley (was nice and cool) then on to San Diego.

drove slow we stopped being in a hurry a long time ago and are still doing
break in miles,but still got a very surprising 25 mpg.

another week or so we will be heading north on 395 after that trip should
have a good idea about real world milage.

am having a fun time with our "minimalist camper"

Les,lqhikers
 

lqhikers

Adventurer
more "minimalist"

with the bed platform completed the pads and sleeping bag (double)
store in net on the left of bed.

if we are camping out and its warm we can leave the back doors open as i mounted a roll up bug net
that is mounted at top and rolls down and hooks with velcro,or we can close rear doors and open the rear
sliding windows.

i added doors on the bottom to have access to storage area.
rear doors have storage pockets for misc on one side and fishing gear on other,
if you notice on rear picture i store fishing poles with velcro on left side,gotta be ready to fish!.

more to follow.

Les.lqhikers
 

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lqhikers

Adventurer
reply to expedition bound

we looked at honda,did not have the head room or interior
usable space that transit has,
real world mpg goes to transit.
element i think is available all wheel drive, transit is not.

d.d. i would go for transit,unless i lived in snow country then i would not have
transit or element!

just my thoughts yours may differ.

Les,lqhikers
 

lqhikers

Adventurer
ford tc "minimalist camper" air flow

since we live in the desert we are always aware of what is needed
to be some what comfortable and that is air flow.

so we added a 3 speed fantastic roof mounted fan,easy install fit perfect.

now with front windows open 2-3",rear windows open we really get a good
air flow and with the extra battery fan can run all night with no problems!

Les,lqhikers
 

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Flagster

Expedition Leader
since we live in the desert we are always aware of what is needed
to be some what comfortable and that is air flow.

so we added a 3 speed fantastic roof mounted fan,easy install fit perfect.

now with front windows open 2-3",rear windows open we really get a good
air flow and with the extra battery fan can run all night with no problems!

Les,lqhikers
looks nice...did you need to cut the roof or was there a vent there to begin with?
 

DJGoo

Too much WoW
That's keeeeeeeeewl! I've always wondered if someone would do this to one of these little vans. They're so great!
Nice job!
 
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