Citroen Relay - The Enterprise! Camper Build

Citroen Relay - The Enterprise! Camper Build

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Discussion

maxc

206 posts

196 months

Thursday 2nd March 2017
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Interesting to see - I am doing the same on a similar van, '10 plate L3H2 Ducato with a 3.0 engine. I am building it with a fixed rear bed over a garage (too old to sleep on cushions) and can get a full size double mattress sideways. I'm 6'4 and this works ok for me. You just have to be clever with the insulation and side linings to accommodate everything. I'm at the stage of all external/under bits, insulation, internal framework and main panels completed. Unfortunately I have had to leave it alone for a while whilst I deal with a major house fire (thread to follow in due course).

Regarding your layout, did you look at the commercially built trucks such as the Westfalia Amundsen? http://www.westfalia-mobil.net/en/modelle/amundsen...
This is seemingly the optimum layout, though you can tweak the front layout for more smaller berths. As for advice and a great data library, you cannot beat the SBMCC - http://forum-sbmcc.co.uk/

Good luck!

geeks

Original Poster:

6,904 posts

106 months

Thursday 2nd March 2017
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Nice, basically the same van then (ours is an L3H2 as well). I couldn't stretch to a 3 litre though apparently they go like stink smile I do get all the other bells and whistles though so musn't grumble!

Rear bed on ours will be fixed above a garage space as well (about 4' high but i may raise this a little to 4'6 to allow room for the Halfords stack-able toolbox). It is actually a double at the back, but a small double (small double is 4', standard is 4'6) not a standard but that's not really a problem for us as we tend to only do 2-4 nights at a time.

We have been through several iterations of layout and this one we are happy with, to be honest it is essentially the same layout as our beloved van but bigger and we always liked the layout of that one so fingers crossed. The great thing about a self build of course is if after a season or twos racing and touring we decide it isn't how we want it, we can change it "reasonable ease"

P.S Sorry to hear about the house frown

P.P.S where is your build thread?

P.P.P.S I have registered on the SBMCC site but feel a little aggrieved to pay for the membership. Is it worth it?

maxc

206 posts

196 months

Friday 3rd March 2017
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Geeks,

Cheers! I will do a full thread on it in due course - still being messed around by my insurers 14 weeks later. I found the SBMCC very useful, but they updated the site and lost all the old build blogs that were most valuable. I'll let you have my login to have a look around if you like, just PM me.

geeks

Original Poster:

6,904 posts

106 months

Monday 8th May 2017
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Sorry for the lack of updates was busy with work and working flat out to get as much done as i could before the weekend just gone! Suffice to say things and stuff happened smile prepare for lots of pics smile





















Shortly after all of that (as in only a matter of hours) we were parked up at Oulton Park for R3 and 4 of the Compact Cup for our firs night in the van!






No running water or gas yet but not much to do to get it there. Electrics mostly done just need to get the 240v earthed to the van and inspected and the 12v just needs an earth as well. We spent the first night with only the fridge and the lights connected and they functioned as you would expect them to smile

Will get some better pics as and when I go out there to tinker and finish things off, feel free to ask questions!

Edited by geeks on Monday 8th May 13:05


Edited by geeks on Monday 8th May 13:07

Spuffington

1,125 posts

135 months

Monday 8th May 2017
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Looking good! smile

Presume that's a toilet/wetroom in front of the bed? Is it plumbed in yet or just an empty cupboard at the moment?

Lynch91

465 posts

106 months

Monday 8th May 2017
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As above, looks like a great build there!

V8mate

44,745 posts

156 months

Tuesday 9th May 2017
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General question for DIY campervan builders:

I'd be happy with a little camper (T25 etc) but just can't accept the narrowness of a rock'n'roll bed. Using the width of the van (as the OP has here^) obviously appeals, but when I looked at the DVLA website about getting the vehicle officially registered as a campervan, the regs state that the bed must be at least 6' long. And not even the biggest Sprinter has that width at its widest part (about 5'6", IIRC)

So what's in the self-builder's mindset? Just not going to bother re-registering the vehicle? Hope the DVLA has never bothered to check the internal width?

(Not sure what benefits you gain from being a campervan rather than a commercial vehicle?)

snowandrocks

815 posts

109 months

Tuesday 9th May 2017
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The Sevel vans (Ducato, Relay, Boxer) are the widest I think, certainly a fair bit wider than a Sprinter or Transit.

Quite a few of the professional converters sell them with beds across the van and with slender enough insulation etc they should be wide enough.

geeks

Original Poster:

6,904 posts

106 months

Tuesday 9th May 2017
quotequote all
Spuffington said:
Looking good! smile

Presume that's a toilet/wetroom in front of the bed? Is it plumbed in yet or just an empty cupboard at the moment?
Toilet yes, no wet room for us, wherever we stay will on the whole have showers so it seemed an unrequired expense (esp when you factor in the price of a water heater)

V8mate said:
General question for DIY campervan builders:

I'd be happy with a little camper (T25 etc) but just can't accept the narrowness of a rock'n'roll bed. Using the width of the van (as the OP has here^) obviously appeals, but when I looked at the DVLA website about getting the vehicle officially registered as a campervan, the regs state that the bed must be at least 6' long. And not even the biggest Sprinter has that width at its widest part (about 5'6", IIRC)

So what's in the self-builder's mindset? Just not going to bother re-registering the vehicle? Hope the DVLA has never bothered to check the internal width?

(Not sure what benefits you gain from being a campervan rather than a commercial vehicle?)
My bed is bang on 6ft long. I could have made it 6'3 i reckon just by recessing the ply lining in the bed area. I will be re-registering it with the DVLA as a Motorhome as the insurance is WAAAAAY cheaper!

V8mate

44,745 posts

156 months

Tuesday 9th May 2017
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Thanks for the responses thumbup

Tampon

4,627 posts

192 months

Monday 12th June 2017
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Well we sold our previous bus to fund a house move to the coast and ae now on the look out for a bigger van to convert.

Search google, pistonheads comes up, look on here and see me mentioned! Small internet world.

Any way please keep this updated, I will certainly be looking on for tips and trick bud.

Good luck and it is looking good.

Could I ask how much the cabinets and furniture was? I made my own last time out of high gloss cupboards and oak work surfaces but interested in the costs of this stuff if possible


sjg

6,911 posts

232 months

Monday 12th June 2017
quotequote all
V8mate said:
General question for DIY campervan builders:

I'd be happy with a little camper (T25 etc) but just can't accept the narrowness of a rock'n'roll bed. Using the width of the van (as the OP has here^) obviously appeals, but when I looked at the DVLA website about getting the vehicle officially registered as a campervan, the regs state that the bed must be at least 6' long. And not even the biggest Sprinter has that width at its widest part (about 5'6", IIRC)

So what's in the self-builder's mindset? Just not going to bother re-registering the vehicle? Hope the DVLA has never bothered to check the internal width?

(Not sure what benefits you gain from being a campervan rather than a commercial vehicle?)
Open to interpretation, they don't define how it's measured or how many it's to accommodate, just that there needs to be a bed. A narrow single bed may need to be 6' but a wide double could be 5'6" long but easily allow 6' across the diagonal, for example.

geeks

Original Poster:

6,904 posts

106 months

Sunday 18th June 2017
quotequote all
Tampon said:
Well we sold our previous bus to fund a house move to the coast and ae now on the look out for a bigger van to convert.

Search google, pistonheads comes up, look on here and see me mentioned! Small internet world.

Any way please keep this updated, I will certainly be looking on for tips and trick bud.

Good luck and it is looking good.

Could I ask how much the cabinets and furniture was? I made my own last time out of high gloss cupboards and oak work surfaces but interested in the costs of this stuff if possible
Thanks mate, I used yours and a few on here to give me the nudge to get stuck in smile

I picked up some "pre cut" (i use the term loosely, you have to fit, scribe and cut down etc) from convert your van. It was around 2k including the cushions and mattress and all the fittings etc.

Feel free to pick my brains, lots stashed in there that isn't on here smile




MG CHRIS

7,862 posts

134 months

Wednesday 9th August 2017
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Looks like a good build will be doing something similar for next year as I'm making the step into club racing within the 750mc so certainly given me a few ideas. How are the windows secured guessing bonded?

Tampon

4,627 posts

192 months

Wednesday 11th April 2018
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Any updates?

I bought a black 2013 Relay and have started converting it. Have leather Galaxy swivel seats in, reverse camera, windows cut in, Transit people carrier removalable seats in as a second row, floor down and started insulating the walls.

One question I can't quite get my head around is the boxing in of the windows? On my last one I just carpeted up to them but these ones I want to box in like yours. What is the section between the ply wall and the van window attached to?

geeks

Original Poster:

6,904 posts

106 months

Wednesday 11th April 2018
quotequote all
Tampon said:
Any updates?

I bought a black 2013 Relay and have started converting it. Have leather Galaxy swivel seats in, reverse camera, windows cut in, Transit people carrier removalable seats in as a second row, floor down and started insulating the walls.

One question I can't quite get my head around is the boxing in of the windows? On my last one I just carpeted up to them but these ones I want to box in like yours. What is the section between the ply wall and the van window attached to?
Hmmm updates, well the van was pressed into service a little before being finished last year so spent the season (motorsport, natch!) not quite done but more than functional. I installed the gas but never got the running water working properly so shelved it last year and carried bottled water when required. Its covered many trips and miles, we did the rest of the Compact Cup season, a couple of weekends away and then Race of Remembrance where it dragged my race car on the trailer plus tools, provisions, spare wheels etc from Milton Keynes to the edge of Wales and back without breaking a sweat an averaging 28mpg which I will be honest I was very impressed with!

In terms of inside over the winter I parked the van up, removed all the cushions etc to keep from any damp that might set in and we aired it and heated it as required. I lowered the bed this year by 6" and added a new mattress, this has made a big difference in sleep in the van, one night was always fine, 2 was a little tough but a first world problem but by night 3 both of us would suffer, so a change was needed. Other than that just some minor tweeks here and there I am still really pleased with it, I will try and get some updated pics this weekend when we are at Snetterton.

Nice work on your seats, I still need to get around to ordering the swivel plate for the front passenger on ours as it would add some seating and make it feel more spacious. I also have a 5kw Diesel heater that I need to fit at some point but the van is so well insulated that actually we are rarely cold once its warmed up.

I boxed off the window section with some standard timber (60x40) and then trimmed it out where it needed, kinda hard to explain I will dig around and see if i can find a better picture of that bit for you.

geeks

Original Poster:

6,904 posts

106 months

Wednesday 11th April 2018
quotequote all
Tampon you have PM!

geeks

Original Poster:

6,904 posts

106 months

Friday 25th January 2019
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To bring some updates to the thread.

Last year our house flooded owing to an epic storm in Milton Keynes, while we waited for our insurance company to get their st together we ended up living in the van in the garden for a month. During that time you find out exactly how strong your marriage is, two people in close quarters with two dogs is a challenge.

Off the back of that we sat down not so long ago working out plans for the coming months and on those plans are redoing some bits inside the van.

Water - I never did manage to get the water running properly, it still sounds like the pump is pulling air from somewhere and I can't seem to work out where, no leaks and whenever I tried to find where it was pulling air, I came up short. This could become a moot point as we have decided that although not having a shower made things simpler install wise if we are to do any proper time in there on holidays and stuff then a shower is probably a decent idea. This will mean I have to redesign the water system and thus probably resolve the running water issue.

Shower - Don't have one, adding one looks straightforward enough, just need to work out the water heater requirements. This may still get shelved.

Heating - It needs fitting, we were rarely cold and when in EHU plugging in a small heater was fine, there are times when this simply isn't practical. So a the Planar heater needs fitting and pressing into service.

Batteries - Although we have one battery actually for the most part this has been plenty. We get a full weekend on battery power alone running the fridge, lights and the inverter, however if we add a heater into that we wont last as long. Plan is to double our bank and have two batteries, I might still upgrade this to three.

Inverter - Power is rarely an issue until again we aren't on EHU then having to connect a small inverter to power the TV and a laptop is a pain, I am looking into a more integrated setup. Also being able to run a coffee machine of some description and Mrs geeks straighteners would be nice, along with maybe a small microwave.

Bed - This is a more complicated one. I am 6'1, the wife is 4'11, guess which one of us wishes the bed was longer? It is bang on 6ft. Physics tells us I cannot lay out straight in the bed, two objects cannot occupy the same space at the same time. Not really sure what to do here. To extend the bed I could cut some inserts out of the lining at top and tail and this would give me a bed of about 6'3, great, loads of room. This would however require cutting into the lining and refinishing that area, not impossible but not really very palatable. The alternative is a full redesign of the interior and refit, which provides the same headaches and also I would need to be mind full of the fact that my power is in a fixed position unless I want to strip it right out and remove all the lining, it's a conundrum, one I will work on and report back on at a later date.

Front Cabin - a new headunit is required, the bluetooth on the van is faulty, device connects, make a call and it crashes, I cant hear them, the cant hear me and I have to completely reboot the headunit to even get the radio back when this happens, not idea. A doubledine android based unit will be sourced or one compatible with CarPlay. Passenger bench seat needs replacing, it's not particularly comfortable or practical, being able to access the living area without leaving the van would be nice. To that end I am working on a seat solution for the cabin, I may well go the Ford Galaxy pair of captains seats or another relay single front seat with a swivel base. Again TBC and low on the priority list.

Watch this space, change is a coming smile


mini95

236 posts

212 months

Friday 25th January 2019
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Interesting topic, I was going to get a conversion but in the end went for a Ducato based Hymercar. Mine has quite a small shower area and uses the sink tap as the shower head, it is usable and fits in the small toilet space.

For heating and hot water the Truma Combi is good, I can use gas or heat on hook up as well, ideal when on site and electric is all included!

I don't think there is ever a perfect set up, I am pretty happy with the layout mine has. One extra bonus is I have a pop top so extra large bed if required!

Look forward to seeing further developments.

V8mate

44,745 posts

156 months

Friday 25th January 2019
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For all the campervans I've built (in my head) the shower has been an external feature.

Serious investment: good plumbing, good water heating and generous on-board water capacity. As a trade-off for improved interior space.