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I’ve only ever owned two vehicles, my trusty 2001 Fiat Punto (that I reluctantly sold for £130 after many adventures – it was all very emotional), and now a Nissan NV200 black van. The Nissan is a great little van, perfect for filling with cycling and climbing kit for adventure weekends, and incredibly fuel efficient – it’s a match made in heaven!

However, I’ve always wanted a campervan! Whilst it’d be great to fully convert the NV200 into an all-singing home on wheels for endless adventures away, I still need to be able to use it as a van in the future, so any work I would do on it needs to be reversible. For that reason, I needed to be cunning.

Over the next few posts, I’ll explain exactly what I’ve done and the costs involved, I hope you find it useful. At the end of the project, I’ll create a post with a list of all of the materials and associated costs too.

As with any DIY project I’ve ever undertaken, I did some research (YouTube is an incredible thing!), and got to work. Here’s what it looked like when I removed the ply lining:

I popped down to Wickes and bought some Thermawrap (£25 a roll) to use as an initial reflective, insulating layer. I used two rolls in the end, including cutting pieces to use over the cab windows overnight.

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I couldn’t find any spray adhesive that could withstand hot temperatures in Wickes (<80°C is required in a campervan conversion apparently!), so had already found that and picked up some Nemesis Contact Adhesive (£5 a can) from Screwfix that can take temperatures up to <100°C!

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The first job was the floor, so I brushed and cleaned the floor, sprayed it with adhesive, cut some Thermawrap insulation to shape, then re-laid the plyboard that I’d removed. This gave me a platform on which to work and reduced the amount of heatloss through the floor.

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Next, I began applying a layer of the Thermawrap into the van sides, cutting panels to suit. Whilst I would have liked to have covered every bit of metal with the Thermawrap, I was conscious of me needing to turn the van back into a van, so I’m sure I’ll lose heat through the bits I didn’t cover.

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Once I’d finished with the foil, I began to fill the cavities with Earthwool Insulation, ensuring that there’s a 20cm gap from the bottom of each panel.

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The reason for this gap to avoid any moisture that may gather in the bottom of the panel to be soaked up by the insulation.

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I used the Nemesis spray adhesive to stick the Earthwool to the Thermawrap and it worked a treat! It was at this point that I realised that I wouldn’t have enough Thermawrap to finish the van, so ended up buying a second roll.

Now for the ceiling. Once again, I stuck the Thermawrap to the van using two pieces.

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Once this was complete, I filled the cavities in between the ridges using Earthwool.

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There was nowhere to attach the panels at the end of the van, so I attached two wooden batons to screw the ply to.

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In the next post, I’ll be upholstering the van!

1 Comment

  1. Unbelievable! What a transformation!

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