Mini camper van ever came to mind?
Well, why not? It's a perfect down to earth vehicle for an adventurous camping and outdoors experience for any couple. They're simple to drive, easy to park, get great gas mileage and have just enough room inside for a double bed and some storage space. Beats the camping tent anytime!
And the best part of it? It can be easily made from your daily driver, so you don't have to jump on the debt-slavery wagon for an adventure vehicle.
Today, you can find a wide variety of practical
vehicles such as MPV's or mini-vans on the market, that can be used as a
mini van. Recently the Ford Transit Connect makes an interesting base
vehicle with it's elevated roof version, allowing lots of inside
Ford Transit Connect mini camper
Professional companies like Reimo can help you with your camper conversion, but you can easily build your own mini camper following these quite basic DIY tips. These are small vehicles and all you need is some basic equipment to convert it into a sensible camper van.
The base vehicle can be either a passenger or a cargo vehicle with or without the back seat. You may use the back seat when not traveling or just keep it inside if it folds down all the way. But remember, there is a whole lot more storage room without the seats, so work it out to fit your needs to the best.
Let's take a look at some different types of mini conversions here to get the basic idea...
The basic framework seen from the side door. Note the storage room underneath and the comfortable bed on the top.
A large and comfortable double bed in a cozy, well insulated interior all set and ready for a good nights sleep.
On the above and below set of photos you van see the Ford Transit Connect camper. This is quite a simple conversion done by using some basic frame work (wood or aluminum) and covering the top with removable plywood panels, enabling you to reach the storage room under the bed. Get a mattress cut to the right size and you're about done.
If you really wish to have some more comfort, you can either buy or build yourself a small chest with drawers, where you can install the cooler, keep the cooking stove and other camping accessories.
You can also build a cupboard unit on one side and install some essentials such as a cooler, sink with running water and a cooker. Try to use a portable (alcohol or gas) cooker, which is much more practical in every day adventure life.
The other side will most likely host a bench seat with an extractable bed and storage space underneath.
Proper insulation , lining and upholstery is not a must of course, but you should consider it for the final touch of the warm and cozy feeling. And a heater might be an option if you'll use the vehicle in cooler climates.
Remember that any framework and furniture can be easily removable if you wish so and only if your government transportation laws allow it, so you can use the vehicle either for work or everyday transportation.
If a full-time mini camper van is what you're looking for, check out the video below...
And check out this fun French video, perfectly describing the practical combination of a small van and a roof tent!
A roof tent is another smart addition for a small camper. Keep the kitchen and storage space inside the car and sleep on the roof of your camping van in comfort.
Every now and then some professional conversions come out with pop top roofs, adding standing height to the camper van. The smallest current pop top mini van camper is based on the Citroen Nemo and made by the British Romahome .
The Germans have quite a lot of conversions to show and this one is based on a Volskwagen Caddy.
The mini camper is a blend of a practical every day vehicle and a small adventure vehicle when needed. As with all camper van conversions, you can use your imagination and try to be creative when converting a small vehicle like this.
It really is a minimal and priceless conversion, so if you're using a camping tent for your adventures and have an appropriate vehicle on you driveway, give it a thought. It does make a whole lot of a difference.
Are you touring around in your own mini camper van conversion or does your friend or next door neighbor have one you would like to share on this website? If you do, I'd love to hear from you! And camping enthusiasts always enjoy reading about something new to get some fresh ideas.