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Old 03-22-2019, 09:35 AM   #101
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Thanks guys. I had thought of a lot of things to try on that velour, but kept imagining this rough scraped surface I would then need to pebble texture and ultimately try to get it looking like the other window surrounds. And then, because I was never going to find matching shades for all my side windows, I didn't like the idea of mismatched window covering solutions. All of which was true before I bought these surrounds.

On to another topic. On this project I have had a goal, which is to make my build look like a slightly modified factory effort, instead of a highly modified home built. Towards that end, the factory always has a name for their special models, and a sticker to promote that name. Part of why I had the EX2 sticker made for the quarter panel, using an F-Series name and modifying it. With the high top though, it needed a camper designation. Is a Sportsmobile without the sticker still a Sportsmobile? Not to the unknowing public.

So to further my deception I needed a sticker. Not coming up with one I thought was clever, I settled on one I thought was funny. A play on Bon Voyage.

Every detail may not be done but the stickers are.
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Old 03-23-2019, 12:36 PM   #102
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Hey shadetreevanman, great build. I have question for you how is your flooring holding up? Thanks
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Old 03-24-2019, 05:34 PM   #103
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Hey shadetreevanman, great build. I have question for you how is your flooring holding up? Thanks
So far, so good on the flooring. Easy to clean since its one piece. Dragging the Porta-Potty in and out of its cabinet hasn't harmed it any. Since I installed it I've been nervous about dropping something sharp on it as it feels soft, but it hasn't happened... yet.

Camping this weekend I wanted to see how storing the reflectix window covers easy to access affected how well I liked them. Usually I've thought of them as a pain in the ass. Turns out, since they're easy to reach now, Lady Shadetree assumed responsibility for installing and removing them. No effort at all on my part. Suddenly they don't bother me so much.

Pulling into Bolsa Chica State Beach Friday afternoon the Park Ranger asked me if we are self contained. Uhh, nobodies asked me that before, but I guess the answer is Yes. We have a Porta-Potty and a grey water tank for the sink but always wash our dishes outside I was thinking as I talked to him. Not this trip, no dumping water outside. With bottled water we have used the sink only a little so far since installing it.

This trip has inspired me to measure and order a fresh water tank today so I can finish the sink up. I've had the electric pump waiting to go in but other projects have gotten in the way of this one.
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Old 03-25-2019, 02:34 AM   #104
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Pulling into Bolsa Chica State Beach Friday afternoon the Park Ranger asked me if we are self contained. Uhh, nobodies asked me that before, but I guess the answer is Yes. We have a Porta-Potty and a grey water tank for the sink but always wash our dishes outside I was thinking as I talked to him.
Just wanted to confirm that you overnight camped at Bolsa Chica in your van?

I have asked them about this previously and was told that I needed to be in a full motor home or trailer in order to reserve a overnight spot.
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Old 03-25-2019, 09:00 AM   #105
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Yes, we camped for 2 nights at Bolsa Chica. We didn't think to ask when we made the reservations online. Maybe that's the best policy. Their only question at the gate was if we were self contained, which I hesitantly said yes to. The camp host told us we couldn't dump anything on the ground, and we didn't.

Almost every RV in the place was a huge shiny diesel pusher. We may have lowered the values in the neighborhood. But then, they may not have even noticed us as the diesel pusher crowd don't come outside much.

Driving through camp Saturday night there were 3 vans including ours. A new Dodge Travato and a new Sprinter that looked to be a Sportsmobile without stickers. All of us were high tops.

With that being said, I'm not a fan of camping there. Parking lot camping, wedged in between 40' long gleaming monoliths, shiny graphic pillars of excess, is not relaxing to me. Sure the beach was right there, the bathrooms were clean, and we were not far from downtown Huntington Beach, but it wasn't much different than a well placed WalMart parking lot.

Our next beach trip is Pismo. Less people, less concrete, as much beach as I need.
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Old 03-25-2019, 03:02 PM   #106
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Yes, we camped for 2 nights at Bolsa Chica.
.
.
.
With that being said, I'm not a fan of camping there. Parking lot camping, wedged in between 40' long gleaming monoliths, shiny graphic pillars of excess, is not relaxing to me. Sure the beach was right there, the bathrooms were clean, and we were not far from downtown Huntington Beach, but it wasn't much different than a well placed WalMart parking lot.

Our next beach trip is Pismo. Less people, less concrete, as much beach as I need.
Thank you for confirming, I appreciate it.

I definitely hear you on parking lot camping, but Bolsa Chica is super close and I was hoping to be able to do some mid week nights there, hoping it might not be as packed. I wish Pismo was as easy for me to get to!
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Old 03-25-2019, 04:38 PM   #107
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Tim, it turned out Killer, lets get together soon, ~Matt Bergman
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Old 03-26-2019, 10:34 PM   #108
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I definitely hear you on parking lot camping, but Bolsa Chica is super close and I was hoping to be able to do some mid week nights there, hoping it might not be as packed. I wish Pismo was as easy for me to get to!
Perhaps my criticism is too harsh on Bolsa Chica. The worst day camping beats the best day working. To be fair we didn't spend much time in camp, we had friends staying in a house on Balboa so we spent all day Saturday there.

Every time we've camped in recent memory, there's at least one other family we know camping beside us. Because of that, cooking, eating, and hanging out all happen outside the van. We haven't spent much time where we would hang out in the van since we built this one. But this weekend, what time we spent in camp, was spent inside the van.

For the first time with this van I set up the butane stove on the counter top and made coffee inside. Lady Shadetree claimed the couch and I used the swiveled passenger seat to recline in, 8' from the couch. We were both really happy with the amount of room we had and the ability to stretch out without crowding each other. "You had a good vision when you built this van" she said to me. Nice to hear. I should have recorded her for the next project we butt heads on.

But I had been thinking for a while now that what we were missing was a table to eat off of. It all started when I noticed the SMB floor plan with a dinette/bed in the same space I have my couch/bed. I began looking at parts and what it would take to convert my van to that layout. I wasn't fond of the side facing seating the dinette required. But I liked the idea of having a table. Then I realized I could add some flip up tables at the ends of my cabinets and keep the front facing couch I have. 2 little tables right in front of the couch in an area that looks like wasted space unless I'm carrying 3 passengers in the back, which is rare.
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Deciding to build the tables before this trip I had started gathering parts, but didn't have enough time to build them. Yesterday I began cutting wood for the project. 1/2" Maple plywood with the center cut out left enough room for the folding table arms to fit up inside.
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Some 1/4" Maple plywood was glued and screwed to the frame to give a flat surface to lay Formica. A magnetic catch will help keep the tables from rattling when folded down. Pictured here before cutting to final size.
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For my original plan I had purchased some grey t-molding to edge these tables with, but after gluing on the Formica I decided I would like it better with some satin polyurethane wiped on the exposed plywood edges instead. I think the Maple edge ties in well with the Maple counter tops.
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A fun little 2 evening project. Got them mounted tonight and gave a demo to Lady Shadetree. We may be eating inside more often.

I have been thinking of building another table to fit between the front seats when they are swiveled to face each other. It would give me eating spaces for 2 more people, or a nice place to play cards on a rainy day. I think I'll see how these two tables work out first. The options for that table would be an RV leg with the receptacle screwed to the floor. Or a table that hangs off of or hinges off of the engine cover.

As I wait for my fresh water tank to arrive I keep trying to decide where to put the fill for it. I bought a nice black thru-body RV water fill, but am having a hard time drilling a huge hole thru the body of the van. It would be on the drivers quarter panel just in front of and several inches below the small rear window. I keep wondering if I should just plumb it to access under the mattress frame through the back with the door open. I guess I should just drill the hole and get it over with.
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Old 03-27-2019, 08:04 PM   #109
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Camped at Bolsa Chica many times over the years in my diesel pusher, once in the van! I do not like it other than its proximity to Main St. Hunt. Beach. The beach is 75 to 100 yards away, and you have to bike , skate, or board to Avilas El Ranchito, Kilarneys, Dukes, Jacks Surf Shop. These are just a few places we use to bike to every spring to Jacks for spring sale. It is an all asphalt parking lot and if you are on the PCH side the traffic at night till after 3am keeps you up. Now we stay at So. carlsbad, Doheny or San Elijo. At So. Carlsbad we love biking to Leucadia! Stay for a week and hit up T.J. for bargain home accys!
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Old 03-29-2019, 10:13 AM   #110
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Yeah, we've stayed in Doheny and San Elijo in the past, both of which I prefer to HB. Lady Shadetree loves all three. Personally I prefer mountains to beaches and wilderness to hordes of tourist. After a day of wending my way through the vehicular and/or pedestrian traffic jams, I'm ready to get out of there.
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