Our Van Conversion

We Bought a Van!!!

Sunday – 11/11/18

Vanbytheriver

We bought a van! We bought a van! We bought a van!! Think I am a little excited? I had been looking at the listing for this van for about 2 weeks before I decided to share it with Brian as he hasn’t been really as excited as I have been about the idea of converting a van. But when I couldn’t stop thinking about THIS van, I had to show him. He actually liked it and he graciously agreed to just go look at it. After about 6 days of conversing with the owner and asking a billion questions, my excitement continued to grow.

Brian is a genius at many things and one of those things is working on, rebuilding and fixing cars and vehicles. So if he says something is a pretty good find, then I know I am doing well. He liked that it was a Chevy, he liked that it was a 1 ton vehicle so could handle the weight of conversion and all that goes into that, he liked that it had a 350 engine in it and that the chassis was in good shape…even after it’s 40 years of life. The owner had replaced the engine a few years ago, replaced the suspension and gave it new shocks which was nice. There is no AC/heater so we knew about that before we got there.  Biggest bonus…it runs!!!! Yippee! If none of that scared Brian, then we were on our way! We drove on Sunday into San Antonio to go look at it in person.

I knew that it would look more rough in person than in the pictures…there would be more rust, and I am sure more issues than we could see in pics or that the guy had told us so far.

When we pulled around the corner onto the street, there it was…like it was waiting for me! I was instantly in love but knew I needed to keep my emotions in check as we didn’t want the seller to know how much i loved it. 🙂

We got out and I was right…there were more defects, more rust, more body dents and such than the pics showed. Once he opened up the doors to the cargo space, I was able to finally see the inside and it was HUGE! I instantly measured to see if my plans for the inside would actually work. The cargo space was 10.5 feet long, 7 feet wide which was great! My plans would work. The biggest bummer about the inside size was that it is only 5 feet 4 inches tall, so even though I can pretty much stand up in it being 5″5, my sons and husband definitely can not at 6 feet tall. But they were wonderful and said they didn’t mind if they had to hunch, plus we wouldn’t be spending most of our time standing in it anyways…we would be taking it to places to be outside!

Something else about the inside now that I got to see it…there were windows behind those metal panels. They were fully intact and raised and lowered just as they did originally….with one extra piece of information….all but one has gun shots in them! Ha! This poor van has been through it! That didn’t scare me as the windows would be removed and either sealed and covered appropriately or replaced with new windows with screens on them. So…my van is a survival tank for REAL!

 

Van7

Brian did his walk around, checked underneath, checked under the hood and said this one would require a lot of work prepping it before we could start converting it. But everything was very doable if I was willing to do it. I immediately agreed as I have been planning for this event since I got my VW bus as an anniversary gift in 2016.

Brian and the owner went for a test drive and the boys and I stayed back since there were only 2 seats in it and only the driver seat had a seat belt. They came back and he said it is a solid ride..loud as it has no insulation at all and has many openings and holes throughout it, but a solid van.

After some negotiating, Brian smiled and he said it was mine!!! Seriously! What??????!!!!! Thank you thank you Brian! The weather was bad and the windshield wipers weren’t working well so Brian wanted to drive it home…we didn’t know if the transmission was going to fall out or something. Ha! So, the boys and I followed behind and got pics. I am in LOVE!

 

So, now we must decide on a name. 🙂 We know we have a long journey ahead of us converting it and we have about 1 million tasks before this beast will be completed but we are excited for the challenge and to watch this amazing vehicle turn into something incredible that encourages exploration, love to grow and adventure for all that ride inside it!

Thanks for following this adventure! More soon as we begin the transformation process!

— Owl and hubby

 

2 thoughts on “We Bought a Van!!!”

    1. Thanks! She is going to be a TON of work but I can visualize her in all her glory so trying to stay focused on that and not the billion tasks that have to be done before she is road ready! Lol! Thank you for following us! – Owl

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