Campervan Conversion – Nissan NV200 Part 1
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.
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!
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
Once this was complete, I filled the cavities in between the ridges using Earthwool.
There was nowhere to attach the panels at the end of the van, so I attached two wooden batons to screw the ply to.
In the next post, I’ll be upholstering the van!