NEWBIE.

Discussion in 'Introductions' started by Adeyabo, Feb 8, 2018.

  1. Adeyabo

    Adeyabo Member

    Hello everyone,
    Just bought a 11 plate Vauxhall Movano 62 thousand on the clock to turn into a motorhome. Any advice welcome.
    I am a seasoned camper having had all forms of camping abodes and equipment in the last 30 years.
    Any advice on electrics very welcome as this is my weakness. I will be using an inverter which is already in the van and mains hook up. How can I switch between the two? Also advice on insulation - which is the best for me to use etc?
    I will be using the motorhome when finished to tour France. I am planning to move to my house in Brittany with my wife in four years time when we retire (55 years young). We then hope to tour from this home base.
    Thanks all.
    Adey.
     
  2. fifthwheel

    fifthwheel Well-Known Member

    Welcome to the forum Adey.
     
  3. Wissel

    Wissel Well-Known Member

    Hey Adey, welcome to the forum. You'll get all the advice you want here :)

    Insulation wise you'll get a few different answers. My personal preference is Kingspan type stuff (25mm)

    I would answer your electrics question, but shattered and falling asleep. I'll answer tomorrow unless someone else does in the mean time.
     
  4. GEOFF

    GEOFF Well-Known Member

    Hi Adey, welcome to the forum. Good luck with your plans. Geoff.
     
  5. Buzzy Beans

    Buzzy Beans Well-Known Member

    Hello Adey, what a good choice of van, but there again I am biased!

    The Master/Movano group of vans are not the easiest out there to convert because of the tumblehome of their body sides (they ain't square), neither are they quite as wide as the Sevel built vans, so in most cases people fit lengthwise beds.

    As for the best type of insulation, I went for spray foam for the roof and sides, it is the most expensive but there again it is without doubt the best, however I used Cellotex sheets for the floor as it allowed me more freedom of choice with the installation of the electrics and plumbing.

    You will be moving it over to Brittany at some time in the future, well me old mate Kermavio will no doubt be along here shortly to welcome you to our warm and friendly fold. I mention him because he lives permanently in Brittany where he is in the throws of converting his Iveco van.

    All the very best

    Phil
     

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    GEOFF likes this.
  6. VanNV

    VanNV Well-Known Member

    Hi Adey, and welcome.

    Great choice of van - I have an NV400 which is basically the same van with a Nissan badge on it. It is, as Phil says, possibly not the easiest to convert, but it is such a good van. Also I can get over 40 to the gallon out of mine (with a light foot - got 39 yesterday with a fairly heavy one). Pictured below, 20 mins ago in a hotel car-park - cheating I know... looking forward to being able actually to sleep in the thing! (BTW I deliberately left the gap to the left to give me a bit of shuffle room in case anyone parked very close - as they have - the L3 is bigger than the average L3!)

    I will let someone more competent answer the electrics, but I am insulating it with some sound deadening stuff ( linky ) which does really seem to make a difference, followed by a kind of plastic wool ( linky ). Possibly not 100% as good as spray foam (which I have in my boat), but not a million miles away in terms of thermal properties, a lot less messy if you're d-i-y, a lot cheaper, and more flexible if you ever want to move/change anything (e.g I am going to have another window/vent put in the van next week, and it won't involve digging away at loads of foam, it will simply involve peeling a bit of the sound-stuff off and cutting a hole in it)

    upload_2018-2-9_7-53-56.png
     
  7. Kermavio

    Kermavio Well-Known Member

    Hi Adey and welcome to the forum.

    As Phil (BB) has said, I'm converting an xlwb Iveco Daily. And the curvature of the sides of those does make life interesting. But we chose it because we will be trundling all over Europe and, being away from home for extended periods, meant we wanted a fixed bed, shower room, dining area and kitchen. This in turn, meant a large van and the Daily, being rear wheel drive, won out over the bigger Mercs and VDubs.

    We also used spray foam as this is generally considered the best. But, as above, it can be pricey. I got round that to an extent by doing it myself. You can buy small kits.

    One of our number describes automotive electrics as The Dark Art. For a great number of us, he is not wrong! So you are not alone. If you go rummaging through the gas and electrics section of the forum, you'll find all sorts of stuff, including a couple of diagrams (I think) which will give you an idea.

    I've come to the conclusion that I don't need to understand it, I just need to get it right. To that end, I drew up what I thought was what I wanted. One of our number kindly said he'd run his eye over it for me. The kindest thing that can be said about my effort was that I was on the right lines. And I probably wouldn't go fizz. But with his help, this is my finished diagram: img027.jpg

    If this helps you, or anyone else, you are more than welcome to use it as a basis. Only don't ask me any questions - I don't have a clue!!
     
    time4t likes this.
  8. Darcar

    Darcar Well-Known Member

    Hi & welcome to the forum..
    I’m a fan of spray foam insulation too, which is what we did in our van.
    I also struggle with the Electrical side of the conversion. My solution is to keep it simple! So far all ok.
    Good luck with your build.
    Darcar.
     
  9. time4t

    time4t Well-Known Member

    Hi Adey & welcome to the forum.

    Phill
     
  10. Adeyabo

    Adeyabo Member

    Thank you all for your great welcome to the forum. Get delivery of said van on the 24th. Currently having the paint touched up and items I have picked up sorted ie sliding door catch fixed and inverter/heater tested. Look forward to starting the conversion and I can see from the welcome that I have like minded knowledgeable people to ask advice. Thanks again.
     
    Buzzy Beans and Wissel like this.
  11. stevetheplumber

    stevetheplumber Well-Known Member

    seeing as you have the invertor its worth using im in the kiss camp Keep It Simple Stupid i would keep inverter and ehu seperate so have a couple of sockets on each you realy dont need that much 240 in a van much better to run as much as you can of 12v and 5v usb sockets you can get chargers in 12v for most phones laptops and tablets ,use gas or deisel for any form of heating air or water
     
  12. stevetheplumber

    stevetheplumber Well-Known Member

    weve just done 3 months in france and used the newly aquired invertor once to run a slow cooker on a day we were driving a long way and we probably stayed on 25 nights on ehu some of which was free on aires
     
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  13. Adeyabo

    Adeyabo Member

    stevetheplumber, was thinking as you say keep it simple. My knowledge of electrics pretty non existent. Already have ehu leads etc cause we have loads of old camping stuff. We will be using mostly aires and campsites anyway so solar prob over the top for us. Watch this space?
    Adey
     
  14. Buzzy Beans

    Buzzy Beans Well-Known Member

    It really is quite amazing how accommodating some of the communes are in France what with free electrics, water & waste and no overnight charges!
    Phil
     
    time4t likes this.
  15. VanNV

    VanNV Well-Known Member

    Exactly - bloomin' good reason for leaving the EU; making us look bad with their accommodating and accepting ways whilst we sensibly ban people in motorhomes from towns, seafronts, and car-parks in case they have a good time somewhere without any council-officials getting fat on the proceeds...
     
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