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Old 01-21-2020, 12:13 PM   #11
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With a dinette setup you can make it as long as you want. Set it up either width-wise across the van, or length-wise. You could even make the two sides different lengths to maximize interior room and possibilities.
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Old 01-21-2020, 09:09 PM   #12
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Is roof cut out full length? If so a walk through layout works really well for two. The gaucho can be shorter than 6ft if you have a swivel driver seat.

Great access to storage, all from inside including the basement.

Gaucho can be made to fold down for stealth. 54Ē gaucho plus swivel driver gives over 6 ft. Can also go with air mattress for second person on floor.. long counter is really nice.

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Old 01-22-2020, 11:21 AM   #13
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Hey Ray,

When we came to see you a couple of years ago and got to look at the different layouts, my wife fell in love with the walk-thru. We were headed in that direction when initially trying to figure out what would work best for us & how we want to use the van 90% of the time.

It's totally my fault for just assuming & not asking, but I didn't realize until I picked the van up from CCV that the back half of the bed is fixed in place. I'm not sure if it has anything to do with the high top, but I needed the high top regardless.

We also initially thought we'd be able to make the driver's seat swivel, but the shifter for the 4x4 sits too close & I have no idea what it would take, or if it could even be moved. I'm kinda thinking the easy solution, if we go with the gaucho, is to make some sort of padded stool that can be put at the end of the bed to give me the extra legroom.

I also didn't realize until we got into this, just how much everything you do affects everything else. Being able to kick around ideas here is one of the great benefits of belonging to this forum. Decisions, decisions...
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Old 01-22-2020, 11:32 AM   #14
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Hi Glen, I remember your visit!

When you say the rear bed panel is fixed - Is the stock roof cut out to the back and the bed panel is bolted in place with a cross bar?

If that is the case, then the bed panel can be unbolted and the cross bar cut out. If the stock roof has not been cut out then that is a bigger issue. It can still be rectified but it is more entailed and messy. The high top has no bearing on the roof cutout in an Econoline.

re: Everything impacts everything else - Yes it does.

Re Driver Swivel - Every conversion with floor shifter I have run across works with a driver swivel.
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Old 01-22-2020, 12:59 PM   #15
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We do have an option for a 3rd person. Again it is only used on occasion when we have a grand kid with us. The area is normally our table but we can convert that area into a bed at night when needed. We do find it very handy. Have not taken pictures of the detailed setup yet but these will give you the idea of what we did. Bed platform measures 30" x 74" when put together and we use a Thermarest mattress on it
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Old 01-24-2020, 11:20 AM   #16
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Thanks for the input everyone...

Ray, the roof has been cut out the entire length & a fixed platform with crossbar has been added, so that's an option. I'll have to look a little closer at the driver's seat swivel options.
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Old 01-26-2020, 11:31 AM   #17
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Bed length

We have the RB50 and use both top and bottom beds, though the bottom has better padding and top is a bit wider. My husband is 6í5Ē so his feet hang over the edge. At times we just pull out the Porta potty and put it at the end to make the bed longer. Itís the same height as the bed. And if you need to use it at night- itís out!
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Old 01-26-2020, 09:16 PM   #18
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We have a Sportsmobile Penthouse in our regular wheel base Transit. We sleep on the lower level all the time. We love the spaciousness, light, air circulation, and standing height of the Penthouse. When we're driving we store insulated window covers and our dining table up there. I'm 6' tall, so our bed is laid out lengthwise; it's an 8" memory foam full size mattress.
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Old 01-26-2020, 09:51 PM   #19
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We like having both. The gaucho has been handy when pulling in late to Walmart and things are a bit sketchy. I really like the behind the driver seat configuration. It allows us to look out the doors, or door windows, when the weather isn't ideal and I can sit on it to prep meals when the top is down, verses hunching over the stove. This flour pan feels less claustrophobia to me. DH is 6'1, I'm 5'6 and we have been comfortable together on both beds.
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Old 01-27-2020, 11:52 AM   #20
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When it was just two of us, back in our VW Bus with a poptop, the lady and I only ever used the bottom bed. As we added kids to the mix over the years, two beds was obviously a requirement. That VW already had the top and bottom beds, if we were to build out our own van right now, and had no kids, I would make just the top bunk and have a dinette and bigger kitchen in the bottom (and we're redoing our Ford Van right now, for what that's worth.) As to stealth camping concerns, again, when it was just the two of us, that was important. Sleeping in a brewery parking lot, parking on the curb outside of friends' homes who lived in cities, it was great to have the top down and sleep in the back. Now that we dodge cities and spend all of our time in the forest, it's never an issue. Camping in a Walmart parking lot these days seems like about as much fun as going into a Walmart. But in those scenarios, most Walmarts won't mind if you pop it up anyway....
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