FAQ: The Van
What year is your van?
She was born in1987
What color is your van?
Wolfram Grey straight from the factory.
Where did you find the van?
The almighty eBay
How long have you had the van?
Peter bought the van in June, 2006. At this point it puts us at 11 years. Currently joined at the hip (or fender)
What size tires are those?
When we set out we had BFG AT KOs in 195/75 on the original 14" rims. They served us well and we have absolutely no complaints. Now that we're heading to South America we upgraded to 15" tires because it is a widely available size that will be easier to find in a pinch. Now we're running the BFG AT KO2 in 215/75 on 15" Mefro steel wheels.
What kind of solar panel do you use?
We originally had an HQST 100w flexible panel that we put out when we needed it and then slid between the top bunk cushions when we didn't. It failed after about 7-8 months and we had to get it replaced under warranty. Now we're using a 100w rigid panel from Renogy that is mounted on the roof rack.
Where did you get your flooring?
Peter did the flooring himself with tiles that he found at Home Depot. They are 12" tiles cut down to about 6" with a plywood subfloor.
What powers your fridge?
Batteries, solar power, and pixie dust. We have a TF49, which is much more efficient on battery power than the stock Dometic.
What sort of tools do you keep with you?
A good metric socket set, torque wrench, box wrench set, screwdrivers, vice grips, pliers, hammer, and wire stripper/crimper. That’s the basic set, though there are plenty of van specific accessories that we’ve acquired over the years, especially when it comes to various sockets for things like CV joints, differential, etc. Of course, the Bentley manual (aka, the Vanagon Bible) is a must have, especially if you’re running a stock engine/transmission.
What sort of recovery gear do you bring along?
We have quite a few things that, though we don’t use them often, can come in really handy for tricky situations. A couple of those things are:
Air Compressor, shovel (small/foldable. full size would be better), recovery tracks for sand/mud, Hi-Lift Jack, tow strap and D shackles. If all that fails, we cry, drink a beer, set up camp and never leave. Just kidding, we never cry.