van life

Have Van Will Travel: Cicadas, Vango Airbeam Tent & Excitement Building

Have Van Will Travel: Cicadas, Airbeam Tent & Excitement Building

Our Vango Airbeam Kela III tent arrived last week and today was the day for the practice run to set it up. The Airbeam technology is slick as you don’t have any poles involved.

It is also a driveaway awning which means when we want to take our van away from camp we just detach a portion of the tent and away we go – while the tent stands on its own.  In the photo above this is actually the backside, which will attach to the side of our van.

Of course we thought we didn’t need to read the directions and just go ahead and put the tent up – no problem. Wrong. I can never understand reading directions anyways. But what we should have done FIRST was to watch a how-to video on pitching it.

But alas, this is why they call it a practice run, right?  And we could have saved ourselves a lot of work had we watched the video first. But now we know that next time, when at camp, it will go much smoother.

And the good news is we made it through without any big argument…and a cicada that decided to crawl up my leg. eeeks!  I guess it thought I was a tree and was hanging out on my “limb.” haha!  🙂  And a baby frog hopped into the tent also as we were setting up.  

All this in our front lawn!  Perhaps it is getting us ready for when we are out in the “big woods.” 

The excitement is building and last night we decided we will venture out on a short jaunt the week following Labor Day. The Vamper won’t be done with a kitchen, but a stove/oven is on order which we will use in the tent. And by venturing out we can then get a feel as to how we will move about in our van and how to plan for the kitchen area inside.

Today, John is building his bed, which will run the length of the van, while my bed, which is already built, runs horizontally over the wheel base. He is amazingly creative with space too, which makes me a happy camper. John showed me a space where there will be two extra drawers that weren’t in the plan as of last week. Woo hoo!

So the tent is rolled back up and actually made it back into into the carry bag without too much trouble, sweat or tears…and I’m happy to say I did it all by myself.

Past posts for Have Van Will Travel Journal

The Adventure Has Begun. New Home on Wheels. Who’d of Thunk?

The Conversion Begins

Inspector Approves of Phase One Conversion

She Gets a Name

First a Name and Now Mascots

Cozy Comfort

Flooring is In (video)

Cutting it Close

Slow and Steady Wins the Race (video)

I Married a Creative Genius

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Have Van Will Travel: I Married a Creative Genius!

Have Van Will Travel: I Married a Creative Genius!

It’s been awhile since I updated you on our Chevy Cargo Van we are converting to a camper – nicknamed The Vamper and Second Chance. As life usually goes, it has been a full one with John’s work schedule. So Sunday’s pending no other obligations is the only day he really gets to work on it.

But today was a big victory in completion of the most time consuming part of the project – storage!

The back end of the van as you can see from the photo, is what John custom built for storage. The dividers he painted an antique white since the space is small, this will help keep it bright and make it appear bigger also.  Besides the plastic container storage if you look to the left and the right of the column of storage bins there is space on either side on the floor for storage, which is technically under my bed on the other side of that wall.

The open space on top right is where John’s bed will go and will run length wise of the long part of the van. And pending all keeps on schedule, that will be next week Sunday that he will build his bed.

Our drive-away awning tent that will attach to the side of the van for extra space and what will be our outdoor kitchen also arrived. We haven’t set it up yet, but here’s a photo of it from the website we ordered it from.

Kela III Std Air

So it is exactly what it says…we can drive our van away and the tent will remain standing wherever we camp. But when attached to the side, we can have the side van doors open. And it is the Airbeam technology which means no poles to deal with – just pumps up in about five minutes…so the relaxing can happen much sooner!

My task this next week is to find and order a camping stove. Once the bed is done and the stove is here, we plan to take the Vamper on a test run outing! Yay!  The kitchen inside the van still will need to be done, but at least now we can go and get in some R & R, which we think will help serve in designing the kitchen and the rest of the van.

It’s getting really exciting now…!!!

Past posts for Have Van Will Travel Journal

The Adventure Has Begun. New Home on Wheels. Who’d of Thunk?

The Conversion Begins

Inspector Approves of Phase One Conversion

She Gets a Name

First a Name and Now Mascots

Cozy Comfort

Flooring is In (video)

Cutting it Close

Slow and Steady Wins the Race (video)

Thank you for sharing and subscribing to my blog updates.

Have Van Will Travel Journal: Slow and Steady Wins the Race – and Makes for a Well-Built Van Camper (Video Progress)

Have Van Will Travel Journal: Slow and Steady Wins the Race - and Makes for a Well-Built Van Camper (Video Progress)

Some days it seems like our van conversion to a camper will never be done. But anticipation is a good thing. My dear, sweet husband, John has dedicated much of his free time (which is basically Sundays) to working on this project which will allow us a way to travel and do some longer weekend camping on a budget.

The last two Sunday’s he spent making templates which you can see in the photos above.

Today he is using those templates to cut out storage walls and beds in good plywood – video below.

Being that today is July 4th it won’t be all work and no play…and some leisure time for lunch and an adult beverage will be happening soon as we venture off for a “test” drive in the van to a beach bar and grill.

Happy 4th everyone!

Past posts for Have Van Will Travel Journal

The Adventure Has Begun. New Home on Wheels. Who’d of Thunk?

The Conversion Begins

Inspector Approves of Phase One Conversion

She Gets a Name

First a Name and Now Mascots

Cozy Comfort

Flooring is In (video)

Cutting it Close

Thank you for sharing and subscribing to my blog updates.