Our Mobile House on Wheels

Our Traveling house on wheels - a Ford Transit Vanbuild

Johan and I love exciting adventures, exploring places, and challenges. We wanted to explore exciting places comfortably, yet minimalistic and at a lower cost. For an affordable adventure, we chose a used Cargo Van with an extended roof – our #vanbuild was born. A 2015 Ford Transit 2.2 TDCI Mobile Home – Wandering Nomad. In this post, I share our dream and what led to our decision to build a tiny home on Wheels! So, to give us enough space to travel comfortably, we started looking for a used extra-long wheelbase Cargo Van with an extended roof. In addition, we wanted a complete off-the-grid home to our liking. In this post, I share our Vanbuild and how Wandering Nomad, our mobile house on wheels, was born. Here, you can read about our journey to make our tiny home on Wheels. If we could do it, you can too.

Couple with their converted White Ford Transit 2.2 TDCI Mobile home.
Our converted White Ford Transit 2.2 TDCI Mobile home.

Our Vanbuild Journey

Meet Wandering Nomad

So, I will introduce you to the show’s star, our Wandering Nomad! She is a 2015 extra-long wheelbase high-roof Ford Transit 2.2. Cargo Van, and when I saw her, I was hooked. Impressive and beautiful, isn’t she?

Ford Transit Cargo Van
Ford Transit Cargo Van

She was too high to get transported on a truck, so the dealer arranged for someone to drive her from Cape Town to Gauteng.

The most exciting part of our Vanbuild Journey was planning the layout of our home on wheels.

Planning your Vanbuild

First, plan – take your time! Remember, Rome wasn’t built in one day.

Campervan Windows

Installing Van Conversion, Windows was one of our first steps in planning to build a tiny house on wheels. Drilling and cutting holes in the Van was a nerve-racking experience. Joseph assisted us with the first few Van window fittings, where Johan was confident to install the other van window.

Two men are busy cutting holes in a Cargo van; whereafter they install the Van windows.
Van window fitting and Van window installation on Windows for Campervans

Install Campervan Flooring

Shortly after the vehicle arrived, Johan inspected the Van for rust and other damages. Next, Johan had to strip the floor and remove the rust before applying treatment. After that, a few steps followed before installing the campervan floor insulation. However, installing the Van flooring vinyl on the campervan floor was one of our last steps in the van build process.

Steps installing Campervan flooring #rust removal #install Van flooring plywood and then #Van flooring vinyl layer
Steps installing Campervan flooring #rust removal #install Van flooring plywood and then #Van flooring vinyl layer then #Van flooring vinyl layer.
Guy busy with van insulation Installing Van framing #rv framing before insulating cargo Van
Van insulation Installing Van framing

Van Insulation and Soundproofing

An insulating cargo van is essential if you want to live in the Van. However, the best insulation for a Camper Van depends primarily on your budget. Preparation is essential. So, before applying any insulation, build the Van framing, then install the ribs and spurs.

Cargo Van Insulation materials help to minimise the transfer of heat and sound. Insulation also deals with mould issues. Although wool is the best campervan insulation, it is also costly. Insulation is one of the essential steps in Vanbuild.

Ford Transit Swivel Seat

After removing the original Ford passenger seat, we converted the box and installed a swivel. Now, the Van swivel seat allows me to swivel, and I can work while he is driving with the swivel laptop table Johan installed.

Bunk bed Motorhomes

Our accessible sleeper campervan bed seats easily convert into a comfortable Kingsize bed. In addition, the Campervan mattress is more comfortable than our mattress at home. Altogether, we have additional storage space to pack things away.

Our Ford Transit house on wheels #Vanbuild
Our Ford Transit Campervan

Vanbuild Finishes

Building a Van with a Bathroom

We’ve decided on a camper van shower with an actual toilet and basin, also known as a wet bath. In addition, I wanted tiles on the wall, although it adds weight to our Mobile home on wheels.

Campervan Window Sills

The custom-made window sills provide enough space to put your Coffee, books or whatever one usually puts on a bedside table. Unfortunately, as with the rest of the Van, the sills were challenging as the Transit Campervan window frame isn’t square.

Van Cabinetry

Planning the Van conversion cabinets is another crucial step in any van build. Johan built a clothing cupboard where we can hang jackets and shirts. The overhead cupboards, drawers, and cupboards below provide enough space for other accessories, linen, utensils, and clothing. Johan made the Vanbuild bunk beds so that we can store stuff we don’t use every day.

Completed Vanbuild image of Van building finishes #swivel table and chair #campervan bed as well as the shower.
Completed Van build

Finishes and Accessories

Our Home on Wheels Kitchen

The Campervan Countertop is another beautiful fixture we’ve decided to have, and we stuck to our decision. Our kitchen is loaded with everything we wanted and many cool features. Besides being very comfortable, our tiny house on wheels greatly pleasures us. In the kitchen of our small little house on wheels, we’ve decided we want enough workspace and everything to look clean from the start. That is why we store our stove in the cupboard below. We take it out without inconvenience and put the stove on the Countertop or outside. From the start, we didn’t want our stove, fridge and other appliances to be in the way. I even feel close to my employees but would rather stay private and not discuss personal matters. Instead, remain professional and know the distance. You don’t want to ruïn a friendship.

Vanbuild Table and Benches

Besides, our dining room has two cosy double benches and a large swivel table, and there is enough space in the cupboards for whatever is necessary to serve a great meal in style.

Build Campervan Bed

The benches convert into a large bed at night. We have small, flexible, wall-mounted bedside lamps on both sides of our bed. Johan used mainly marine ply for the bunks and cabinets.

A man sitting in his completed Vanbuild. Campervan accessories include Lightweight tiles in shower and backsplash.
Completed Cargovan

Vanbuild accessories

Ford Transit Roof rack

We installed a custom-made aluminium Ford Transit custom roof rack, strong enough for us to sit on the roof and enjoy the view. In addition, Johan installed a 450-watt solar panel that enables us to travel 100% off the Grid.

Campervan Awning

Our last addition to our Van is a Ford Transit awning. Unfortunately, we couldn’t find any suitable ceiling besides the imported Fiamma awning due to the vehicle’s height. We installed an aluminium closed F45L Fiamma awning on the Van. The top that works with a mechanical roller was Johan’s last installation after Vanbuild. Follow us on our Outdoor Adventure Blog. One of the first things is to decide (and agree) and choose the perfect Countertop.

Related Posts

Pin for later
Our Ford Transit Vanbuild
Van Life Journey in Wandering Nomad

Watch this space to find out more about the following:

  • Our Conversion van-building process
  • Step-by-step guide on the Van building you want.
  • Required Accessories for a Camper.
  • How to choose the right Appliances for your Van conversion.

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3 Comments

  1. Beautiful and creative work, who is the man behind this amazing 🚌?What challenges did he experience during the renovation process and how where they overcome? 😃