Inside the Big Blue Van


This all started after a trip to Yellowstone in my sports car in 2009 where I camped for a few nights in a tent (and the rain). I was seeking a vehicle more suitable to the road-trips I wanted to take. It wasn’t easy camping out of a 2-seater sports car, even by myself, and I wanted to bring my son on some of my trips. I waffled back and forth between a mini-van that I would customize myself or a large V8 van conversion, or possibly even a Class-C RV.

After careful consideration I realized that a mini-van would not be able to tow (an important option for me), and a full-fledged RV was not practical for a 1-person trip, so the middle ground van-conversion was sought after via Craig’s List. I had one in the past and loved the freedom it gave me, so I searched for one similar to it and stumbled across, and purchased what is now my “Big Blue Whale” 2784 days ago.

100_6390Though I have considered many a replacement, I simply can not find a more versatile road-trip vehicle. While the fuel mileage is poor compared to a passenger car, it is great compared to an RV or a Truck and trailer setup. It is large enough to pretend to be an RV and small enough to fit into a standard parking spot (only just) for which-ever suits me best that day.

Van comforts;

  • 92 sq foot of interior space
  • 5.5ft of headroom
  • Can sleep 3 people
  • Camp Chef propane Oven/Stove
  • Small 120v & 12v fridge
  • Inverter to power 120v appliances
  • Full 120v power shore-power wired
  • Portable flush toilet
  • 5000lb towing capacity
  • Two deep-cycle batteries (200 Amp hours)
  • 300 watts solar battery charging
  • 10ft retractable awning
  • Full LED interior lighting

In 2014 the interior has rebuilt, once again, to a fresh layout which gave me some dedicated desk space, a closet, and a much needed longer bed to sleep on.

In early 2016 the interior went through a minor renovation to make it girl-approved, and repainted at the end of 2016

IMG_1571

IMG_1642

IMG_4815

IMG_7650

van-before-n-after

Interior images:

You may also like...

14 Responses

  1. Ohlonesomeme says:

    When I started looking around for my 3rd van I did run across one of these extended
    3/4 ton camper vans. I believe the reason for the baulk was it had a 440 motor in it.
    Everytime I see one of these (yours) van on the road I think “almost”

  2. Gabriel says:

    Hi, can you please tell me the model of the car/van? Kind regards from Romania

  3. Ivan says:

    Hello, I am considering a 1989 b250 as well. Mine will be a full diy from a cargo. I was wondering if your floor plan is ‘to scale’? What are the dimensions of your vehicle? Is yours extended?

    Cheers,

    Ivan

    • Van-Tramp says:

      Yes, mine is the extended van (12 feet from drivers seat-back to rear doors, 5′ 11″ interior width) and the floor plan is to scale.

  4. Ivan says:

    What make & model is your oven & stove combo?

  5. Kyle Mel says:

    Hey!
    Just wondering what kind of mileage you would get on the highway with Big Blue?
    Thanks,
    Kyle

  6. Makayla says:

    Thank you so much for blogging about your travels, I am about to be a college student and afterwards am looking forward to investing in travel…first global, but eventually in a van living in the West. You inspire me and I loved reading your about page, very authentic, much love and light!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

*