2018 update to my WH(WK) build

It's been a while since I last posted but since prepping my WK a couple of years ago for a Pyrennese trip I’ve been really happy with the way everything has performed. The only area of disappointment was not having a proper fridge. The electric coolbox is fine on cooler UK camping trips, but isn’t really cutout for the heat of Span and southern France, and is too power hungry to leave on for extended periods. So with another euro trip planned in June I decided a bit of an update was in order. I decided that a proper compressor fridge was probably the way to go to provide proper fridge/freezer performance with low power consumption.

All things considered and after some measuring and research on fridge dimensions, I opted for a Waeco/Dometic CDF16 on a slide arrangement mounted to the right of kitchen drawer. I’ve almost completed the build apart from the painting and reinstallation but here are some pics of the build so far.

The original setup fully loaded with the toolbox to the left of the kitchen drawer.

Trial fit of the Dometic. I thought I was going to get away without too many mods but It was a tight fit so the draw box needed to be moved slightly to the left.

Draw removed to start the build

Routing the side of the drawer box to recess the slide runner to minimise width.

Runner in place.

Making up a frame to hold the fridge.

Tacking up the right hand runner mount. This has to sit higher than the left and runner to allow for the curvature of the tailgate corner.

Jack mount back in place after removing a strip from the edge to allow the draw to be moved 12mm to the left

Making the slide front plate. This will also act a support for the fold out table.

Trial fitting the slide.

More later...
I've now painted, varnished and assembled all the parts ready for installation. But in my eagerness to get it finished I think I have overlooked a small section of the front slide that needs to be trimmed out to clear the table hinge!

I spent the weekend and the last couple of evenings refitting and tidying up some details.

I had previously used tie down straps to hold the waffle board parcel shelf frame in place, but the straps tended to get in the ay of storage space, so I decided to add some M5 clinch nuts to secure the frame directly to the trim panels.

Removing the cubby tray to run the fridge wiring from the rear power outlet.

Made up a removable rear cover for the tool compartment to support the thin ply top cover, allowing it to support the weight of two 10 litre jerry cans which used to sit where the fridge slide is now located. It will also keep loose items from falling out.

Made up a little toggle to lock the fridge slide.

There's still a bit of fettling to do to the fridge slide runner height to allow it to be used to support the folding table in place of the aluminium strut.

Tidied up the rear access hole in the draw box to the cubby compartment.

Just need to refit the waffle boards back in to compete the parcel shelf and passenger compartment divider.
Thanks both, I'm looking forward to getting out and using it as soon as possible. Today I decided to face the some of the grottier jobs underneath, including the long overdue replacement of the leaky transmission cooler lines. I've had a set of new ones for over a year but have been putting off fitting them.

First thing to do was remove the underbody protection. This was caked full of grass and mud from my Yorkshire trip, as well as transmission fluid, so they really need to come off anyway for a clean.

Starting to remove the cooler pipes which is shaping up to be a pig of a job, which is why I've been putting it off!

New pipes waiting on the bench. I actually think I'm going to need to cut these and fit some compression fittings in them to get them in if I'm going to avoid removing all sorts of things to get them routed.

I'll continue with the pipes tomorrow. Then do an oil inflater change on the engine. I also need to weld some new threads into the front cross member for the front edge of the sump guard as these have stripped.

More later.
Today was spent replacing the cooler lines. I cut the old ones to remove them then spent a frustrating few hours wrestling the new ones into place. I tried from below first, but finally succeeded feeding them in from the top after removing the alternator and oil temp sender, and few other bits and bobs. They follow a torturous route around the steering column, rack and engine mount, and in the narrow gap between the tunnel side and trans, and around the cats.

Whilst the intake was off I gave the throttle body a clean up.

Degreased and jet washed the underbody guards. ready refit, but I’m going to leave them off for the time being as the front mounting holes on the cross member are stripped and I want to clean up the underside also check for any leaks after the trans cooler line replacement.

The stripped captive M6 nuts.

Cleaned up and drilled for some M8 nuts. All three need doing.

I ran out of time this evening to weld in the nuts so that will have to wait for later in the week.


Endurance Adventuring
Fantastic design and execution of the rear storage/fridge slider. I've got a WK2 build and have designed/built a few rear storage decks & fridge sliders for other Dometic models. I decided against a slider in my own set-up, and have retained the left side of the storage area to strap down Pelican brand cases with gear, but I'm very inspired by the layout of yours... might have to find a way to integrate that kind of stove storage into mine!

Looking forward to seeing more progress and write-ups!
Thanks Ryan. The build has sort of evolved with the use of the vehicle, rather than being designed from the start. Initially just needed a way to secure the trolley jack for rally servicing/chase car duties, then I wanted a two burner stove for a Pyrenees trip, which set the width of the drawer. Followed by a way to carry some waffle boards other than on the roof, so added the parcel shelf. Luckily the remaining space at the was just big enough (with a bit of tweaking) for the fridge.

I got the waffle boards back in yesterday, and checked the fit of two 10 litre jerry cans in place of the 20 litre that travelled where fridge now sits. This was one of the reasons for adding the front to the jack compartment to support the weight. I'll probably make up a clamp/strap to hold the cans in place. There's still room for a water container to fit between the cans and the table.