We spent over half of our initial budget on a top of the line power system from Victron Energy. And by we, I mean I. You know what they say about initial budgets anyway, "It's like that unicorn you thought you saw.. turns out some guy just glued a horn to his pony. Never gonna happen." One of my favorite sayings. So, why did I go all out on the power system? I'm a hardware hacker. I like technology. I like fancy technology. And, I like data. The Victron Energy systems give me all of that. They have some really nice [...]
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So far Nick has created 12 blog entries.
When converting a bus, one must prioritize the order in which things get done. Without a doubt, building a rooftop deck is one of the highest priority steps on the path towards a safe, comfortable and livable bus. Right? Actually, we ended up prioritizing this step early in the build because we thought it would involve putting holes in the roof - screws, bolts, something. Turns out the design our fabricator came up with didn't require an holes in the body, but hey now we have a deck! The deck ended up being 8 foot by 10 foot, and hangs off [...]
Even though Vicaribus isn't finished with it's makeover, there's no reason it should remain confined to it's claustrophobic backyard parking pen. Sure it gets it's daily Home Depot run and the odd overnighter at the shop, but sometimes a bus just has to get out and stretch it's legs and see the world. Rather than warming up with something simple for our first real excursion, we decided that we might as well just dive in and give Vicaribus a real challenge. The challenge we came up with was driving up a big ass mountain and spending the night at 11,000 feet [...]
In this episode of the Vicaribus bus conversion blog-a-thon we will go over the Vicaribus water system and installation. You'll not want to miss it, because it includes bonus footage of slow motion awkwardly positioned welding by our good friend Chad at C-Squared Studios. When adding a water system to a bus there are lots of options as to how you can go about it. You will typically have a fresh water tank, a grey water tank, and possibly a black water tank. The fresh tank is your sparkly clean fresh water for drinking, cooking and bathing. Your grey water tank [...]
Before Michelangelo could craft a masterpiece, he first had to create a blank canvas. As it goes for Michelangelo, so goes it for Vicaribus. After the teardown was complete, the next step was re-insulating and boarding up the floor, walls and ceiling so that we could have a nice clean medium in which to apply our handywork. If you peruse the skoolie forums, you will find lots of discussion on whether or not to insulate and if so, what type of insulation to go with. Even though we are leaving most of our windows exposed (bus windows are quite the thermal succubus... ha, pun [...]
Part 2 of the teardown did not prove to be as hard as part 1, though I'm not sure if I feel this way because it was entirely true, or if it is because I waited so long to write about it here. Time distorts the memory. Lucky for us, our bus came with the seats pre-removed by the previous owners, so that was a task we did not have to endure. These owners also laid down a nice looking faux wood floor that, for it's purposes, looked pretty good. Unfortunately, this flooring had to go so that we could get down [...]
Bus Conversion: Tearing down the house (Part 1 - The walls of tribulation) Before you can make something beautiful, you really need a blank canvas for which to work your magic on. I mean sure you can put lipstick on a pig, but is it beautiful? Most people would say probably not. For a serious bus conversion, and I do mean serious, this means ripping out the insides of the bus. This ripping would typically include seats, walls, insulation and flooring. In part 1 of tearing down the house, we are just going to cover the walls and insulation. No need to [...]
Why on earth would one remove two - yes, two - very cold, very working, custom A/C units from a bus that one also plans to live in? The answer is very simple, and two part. They took up too much room, as we have a very small bus. And, they are only useful when the bus is running. We will be using something else to keep ourselves cool, and intend to follow the weather as best we can while traveling. I didn't actually get any good picture of the systems while they were on the bus, but this is where the [...]
This one was a quicky that went way better than I expected, though I haven't really tested to see if there is any actual improvement. The situation: the engine on this bus sits further back, pretty much in the cab of the bus. This provides some benefits, such as visibility improvements and a unique look. The problem: this bad boy is loud and hot. The solution (not really a complete solution): replace the sound/thermal lining on the interior of the access cover in the cab. From this: To this: To this: To cover this: Using this: http://amzn.to/2p22C5z I was surprised how easy it [...]
About 100 miles into my first ride in the bus, I realized the gas gauge hadn't moved. For the next 2200 miles or so I just guessed as to how much gas I had, which didn't always work. (See 2000 Mile Shakedown) The first hunch is always that the fuel tank sender unit isn't working. After some poor multimeter testing and some weird behavior from the dash I incorrectly determined the issue was with the fuel gauge itself. 90% percent sure now that it was indeed the sender unit. Fortunately for me, some previous owner had cut an access panel to the [...]