How a successful man comes to live in a van part 2 

Alright it’s time to continue. I left off on the build. I bought a 1995 dodge 2500 conversion van. It had a 5.9 litter V8 motor. 4 captain chairs and a rear couch that folded into a bed. I was in HEAVEN!!! I had enough room to stretch finally. After the first trip I realized the gas was going to kill me. I was getting around 9 miles to the gallon. If I tried hard I could bring it up to 13 which I did learn how to do regularly. So I started looking into motorcycles. That will be another story though. I also figured out that with all those chairs I was loosing to much valuable space. So I removed the two rear seats and installed a bank of 3 drawers and a cabinet against the wall behind the drivers seat. The room was awesome. I removed the original 13″ tube TV and VCR. I installed a 19″ flat screen LED with a DVD all in one TV. I also switched all the interior light bulbs to LED. I gained two more cupboards and lowered the power draw dramatically. After about a year of sleeping on that couch/bed I realized it never turns into a couch anymore so out it went. It was large. I used queen sheets on it. They fit a little baggy but I believe it was more from only having a 3 inch mattress. So now, again, I had a ton of room. So I installed two more cabinets that faced the rear doors so that I can access them from the back. That was great. I could keep all my dirty work cloths, oils, ridding gear and BBQ out of my cabin now. Real clean. I loved it. When I installed the counter though I placed it backward so that it was functional from the inside. I ran cords from the inverter up front to a power strip on the rear counter for all my charging needs. I also ran a cord out the front next to the engine block heater plug. When I was plugged in people thought it was an engine heater not the shore power for my van. Against the rear cabinets a twin bed fit very snug over the rear wheel wells. I raised the bed to be flush with the rear windows. This gave me enough length to stretch out. I’m 5’10” tall. It also gave me a huge space under the bed for more storage. I bought a 3gallon water jug with a hand pump and bungeed it to the front counter. I then mounted a propane stove to the counter behind the chairs. This gave me a way to cook on rainy/snowy days. I had to be very careful about ventilation though. The stove worked great as a furnace as well. I could start my coffee in the morning and warm the van at the same time. This worked awesome for a few years. My only hiccup was gas mileage and it was not tall enough for me to stand in. If not for those reasons I’m sure I would own it still today. If you are a person on the fence about using a van for living temporary or full time. I would suggest this route first. It will let you know if your passion is real without breaking you financially. I bought my van with 80k miles for $2500. I spent about $1,000 into converting it. And sold it with 140k miles for $4,400. Take your time planing a floor plan that works best for your situation and take your time. A lot of this lifestyle is being able to take pride in your build. 

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