Heres my deal. Just turned a young 61. On my fourth van build right now. Like a dork I said B20 in a couple comments I made earlier. Duh..I drove Dodges for many years. Anyways, its a 93 G20 Chevy former conversion package now converted into a fully equiped camper inside, although by no means is it done yet. But are they ever? Im gonna try to ad some pictures so you can follow along with the rebirth if ya all want. Been a vanner since 1974 back when I first managed a little speed shop in town here. Had my own custom interior shop back in the heyday. Making custom cabinets for vans is a specialty I do. Also painted cars and vans back then but a bit long in the tooth for all that now. I was a traveling professional musician from 1982 straight on thru untill 1991 when I went back to college to become a teacher. Got banged up real bad in a highway pileup in 1990 as a passenger and screwed my spine up pretty dang good. Big surgery followed by 96 and aint done so well since, but still vannin. I was very surprised and very pleased to find out that the art and appreciation for custom vans really hasnt gone away like I thought it had. KICKASS! Did the Van Slam in 1980 and 81. What a three day weekend that was YOWZA! Hell ya, this rules! I am so happy to find out Im indeed not at all alone! Custom vans rule. Nothing else like em and there never will be. I look forward to meeting you all and seeing you at some events once Im ready to show. That said dont be surprised if I show up with work in progress. Aint nothing holding this old dog down! Ill help with any questions that I can. All my old custom vans were Chrysler products so I know em pretty well. I was a parts guy for six years in the seventies to. My first custom van build was a 71, number two, a 76, number three a basic 79. Ive switched to Chevy G bodies and not dinking with anything newer than a 95 when they went to the Express body style. I like full size vans only to be honest, but had many a mini contraption. Never again I wont! And yep, I LOVE my 93 G20. What a Cadillac of a van, just kicks ass over all my old ones drivability and ride wise. And I like the body better now. That said, Ill always dig a mid seventies shorty Dodge or Plymouth for looks when done up right. Theyll always have the looks that kill. But hey now; we aint exactly done yet, are we now!!!!!!!
Last edited by Turnkey; October 07th 2017 5:57 pm.
Here are my additions to date for the curious: - Maxxfan Deluxe smoke roof vent model 7500K with 2 remotes. I HIGHLY HIGHLY RECOMMEND this vent, it seriously kicks butt. See their features list. Thermostat controlled auto open and close and on and off, in and out directional flow, ten speeds either way, remote open and close or roof or wallmount control pad and a nice ceiling fan mode. You really can't go wrong with this vent, plus it looks kinda old school, a little like the old Super Scoop from back in the day. Now theres a hard one to find anymore, for the few who will remember them. I installed this vent first thing and have gotten a lot of use out of it without any issue. Well worth the money - Sunforce 3000 (modified) front solar vent with in or out fan and LED light ring. I custom installed this and made my own custom interior escutcheon trim ring. I'll get a pic of this soon for you, it worked out kick butt. They don't come with much for the reveal. This is a great cure all for dirt cheap. - Norcold AC/DC fridge freezer. I like this model and size for van use, works great. A craigslist find at 115 dollars was a bargain. A guy was gutting out a deceased mini moho. - NOS Coleman Convertible upright ice box with all the cual fancy trays and nice ice bin with drain spigot inside. I got lucky one day and spotted this on ebay brand new in the box and never used NOS from 1974! What an amazing find. 80 bucks was a steel. And uh....yep, its all metal but the liner. Note the white front on it matches my cabinets and is very unique. I got lucky on that, all are woodgrain that Ive seen to date. Many are for sale used but most are asking a bit much for them, but they work good for a camper van. I like having the fridge freezer and the icebox as well. Note either one can be used for storage as well. - Half Pint low wattage microwave. You might wanna take note on this. The Half Pint first version model is the only one I know of that came in a 600 watt version. Perfect size for a van, and not to hard on the invertor, but DO NOT skimp on cables to and from yer aux system house batt or you'll regret it. Note only the early model half pint like the one I have are low wattage draw like this. See my photos for what they look like and go to ebay etc. to find one, they rock. The production change in styling to the newer half pint series bumped the wattage draw of them up to 850 watts. Still feasable, but darn hard on your aux system. - Typical full size bar sink, stainless steel. Propane hot water heater, 10 gallon fresh tank, soon going under the van for a twenty gallon fresh tank. Nothing nappy get used in the sink, so a simple loop water trap and direct drain to the ground works. I did not install a grey tank, and I dont intend to either. I forget the make of my 12v. DC water pump but they're green and black in color, and half the price of the Sureflow models with equal specs and ratings. Its big enough to pressurize a large motor home system and a bit overkill for a van, but hey, it works, darn good..... - Under the drivers side counter top are true solid hardwood kitchen cabinets cut down for van use. How to do this? Ya cut the toe kick off em and they're PERFECT height for inside a van! takes a few more mods to work but any of you can do it, no big thang. We have a recycle center here like most places do anymore. Fifty bucks for all including the killer drawer cabinet. The upper cabinet on this side I made. Counter top came from the recycle center as well. Thirty bucks and matches up nicely with the factory captains chairs and interior that I did keep. There was enough to make counters for both cabinet setups on each side of the van and a leftover section I have set aside for the drop down table that will convert the rear dining booth into a queen size or so bed. This is still under construction. Im still using the factory fold down couch for the time being. Takes a bit of padding to make that contraption sleepable, but its worked out for three years in a row. The booth will be a much better setup when done. Ill strip the fabric off the factory fold down couch to make the dining booth cushions to keep everything matching and factory looking inside, which is one of my objectives. I never was a fan of the shag wagon motif. - Captains chairs up front are the factory conversion seats that were at the van middle originally and basically unused and not sunfaded, so I swaped them out to the front pedistals, then sold the original front two. - Farenheit tid701 cd, dvd, am fm 7" touchsceen with backup cam and iPod integration and remote up front. Pioneer speaks at all four with a 10" Polk audio sub pushed by 300 watt Boss amp. Overkill, and for sale, I dont use the sub much because Im old school from back in the day where music actually contained musical notes, not a damned thump that irritates the ever living shit out of me. So if ya want a good deal on great sub box, 30 bucks takes it. Basically new 10" Polk Audio speaker and 3/4" ply box only that is. The Boss amp I'll repurpose in the van to REAL speakers...to actually make real music with... Ya did see that "musician" note I hope.... - 17" 12volt TV/DVD with remote. Not a drop down because I don't like drop downs for like, five thousand really sensible reasons in a camper. - Thetford 155s porta pottie, ye throne, which rules. - Sunforce 2000 watt pure sine wave invertor. - Norco Aux system battery isolator mounted extenally for safety. - Backup 800 watt inverter, modified sine wave. Dont use these things on your TVs and the like if you intend to keep em working....smaller tools etc., theyre fine. - Bulldog remote alarm systems. - Custom column lockout. Without knowing the correct procedure, any would be thief is going much of nowhere in this van. They'd NEVER get it outta park, even if they did hot wire it somehow. - Field and Stream green series 12v. blender, coffey pot, frypan etc.. Blender is nice, the others not so much. I got em cause they're green and match. Wouldnt do it again. That was kinda dumb of me....lol! - Passenger side microwave, fridge, and storage cabinet is one of my own creations, and not done yet. You can't see it in the photo I posted, but theres another section and cabinet to the right of it with a small counter top and shelf, and the lower cabinet houses the auxillary 27 series 12 volt house battery and dual invertor systems. - New Michelin's on all four corners. Original tires were also Michelin and still on the van when I got it and had 117k and lots of tread left. I only bought new because they developed sidewall leaks from aging. I figured any tire that can last for 117 thousand miles and 20 years in Michigan and still have worthy tread left on them is a pretty darn good bet. I dropped the extra dough on another set. Real glad I did. - New D. Haus four speed auto trans with OD RULES! Thanks again Dennis! NO ONE BUT NO can build an automatic trans right like this man. - If it moves, rotates, filters, is made of rubber, ignition related or voltage related or cooling related and or attached in any way to this vans motor, its been replaced and brand new, not rebuilt. - All new brakes, rotors, calipers, lines, drum, shoes, cylinders; all of it but the power booster. Thats next.... - 350 5.7 has mega power. This one is surprisingly pretty swift.
Last edited by Turnkey; October 08th 2017 1:28 pm.
Welcome! Yep, we didn't go anyplace....just a whole lot less of us than there was back when. Sounds like you've got your van heading towards what you want. I ran so many Dodges in the past that when I got the Ford I have now I couldn't get used to the drivers side floor area...so, I built a Dodge fender well in it to rest my foot on. Lots better now.
2005 E350 Turbo Diesel Why is it that when I press 1 for English, I still can not understand the person on the other end????
from Florida Nice looking van you got there. Sounds like you got a sweet setup too.
Arianrhod:2003 Chevy Astro Black Magic: 1985 Dodge B-250 Serenity:1985 Chevy G-20 The Outcast:1983 Ford club wagon Freedom:1990 Ford E-150 Outcast Vanners van club member of the Florida Van Council Support your local 2%
Man oh man, thanks so much! Its like a home coming for me. Im pretty sure Im the only guy in my area still into this. Its kinda tragic when ya think about it, there were so many kickass vans back in the day. I wonder where they all ended up at? Ive been looking for my original 71 Dodge for years now. I poured my heart and soul into that custom van and could kick myself for ever letting it go... That said, this ones going over the top. A bit wiser now....but still crazy about custom vans as ever! Lol!
So I want all of your opinions. Old greeny there a mine is going in for a major body overhaul. Patch panels on the way now. As is well known, running board mounts are the danged worst for creating rust on the mid quarter section. But heres where I want to hear all of your opinions; BOARDS BACK ON....OR BOARD'S OFF? This is the first van Ive had with running boards. I cant decide whether or not I like em, or hate em. But they do need a little work. A couple minor things, nothing huge.
Last edited by Turnkey; October 08th 2017 2:28 pm.
Everyday above ground is a Good Day!!! Never Stop Vannin'
Owner & Creator of Wizard's Van-In Videos Member of Riding High Truckers from 1982 to 1996 2nd Member of The Toopa Sinner Tribe Member of Free Bird Vanners 1996 to Present Member of Cape Atlantic Truckers South Jersey Host Club of Freeze Out Certified Nats Judge Member of Shenandoah Valley Vans