No questions; just HELLO for now

BeeBopper

New Member
Hello Everybody.

My partner and I have been living aboard our Mercedes Sprinter 511 diy conversion since April this year. We are still in the build process, but all of the systems are working adequately and it is warm (eberspacher + heat exchange matrix / wood burner) and cosy for the winter.

After much deliberation, we decided to have an accompanying car, rather than a motorcycle on a rack on the back. The end result was a Smart ForTwo on its own trailer. The set-up works a treat.

The plan is to be finished by early April, then start to poke around the UKs coastal regions for the summer. Next winter might see us heading down to Portugal.

Enough for now. I'll add more on the build if anyone is interested.

The BeeBoppers
 

chrisjones18

Well-Known Member
Hi and welcome :thumb:
Posts are thin on the ground at present but dont let that put you off.
We (2 of us and a French bulldog) have been in a 7.5 mtr for a while. In my view It aint big enough, though I did think of a van at first. She dont half collect some stuff:sweating:
 

fanofatan

Active Member
Hi BB welcome to the site, it'd be great to see or read about your build :thumb:
Are you free camping, on a driveway or on a site atm :cool:
not the busiest of sites but there are a lot of experienced full timers on the site who can advise on most things vanlife related :thumb:
 

BeeBopper

New Member
Hi and welcome :thumb:
Posts are thin on the ground at present but dont let that put you off.
We (2 of us and a French bulldog) have been in a 7.5 mtr for a while. In my view It aint big enough, though I did think of a van at first. She dont half collect some stuff:sweating:
Hi Chris,

Thanks for the welcome.
We are trying to be minimalist and building to make the most of the space we have, but only time will tell if we have constrained ourselves too much. The Smart car acts as a bit of a mobile shed though, so perhaps we are cheating!
 

BeeBopper

New Member
Hi BB welcome to the site, it'd be great to see or read about your build :thumb:
Are you free camping, on a driveway or on a site atm :cool:
not the busiest of sites but there are a lot of experienced full timers on the site who can advise on most things vanlife related :thumb:
Thanks for the welcome!

In due course, I'll start to put some info together on the build and post it. It's been 2 and a bit years so far in the making, with a few probably nonsensical design decisions causing more work than necessary, but I think it will all be worth it in the end.

We are on a site at the moment. Our plan is to be on sites most of the time through the winter as we have an electric only fridge, but in summer, the solar panels / battery combination should give us 4 or 5 days free from the need to have a hook-up or run the engine.

I look forward to interacting with other full timers as the adventure continues.
 

vwalan

Well-Known Member
hi. welcome aboard, cant beat self builds .
might be a small inverter generator could be ideal for you.
they can be quieter etc than others .
but going to the sun down by the med or morocco in winter is really the answer.
fit as many solars as you can helps . but in uk hardly enough sun plus its too low in winter.
have fun and smile . soon be summer.
 

BeeBopper

New Member
hi. welcome aboard, cant beat self builds .
might be a small inverter generator could be ideal for you.
they can be quieter etc than others .
but going to the sun down by the med or morocco in winter is really the answer.
fit as many solars as you can helps . but in uk hardly enough sun plus its too low in winter.
have fun and smile . soon be summer.
Thanks for the welcome. A small genny is in the back of our minds as a potential fallback if we want to stay away from hook-ups. We currently have a 120w panel on the roof and a 100w suitcase panel as well. On a good day up until mid September, they were just about sufficient to keep everything ticking along, but now, not enough to charge an electric toothbrush (not that we have those!). This time next year, all being well, we will be in the Algarve and not worrying at all about where the next top-up is coming from.
 

vwalan

Well-Known Member
mine uses 6x80wt panels on the roof . but in uk like yours after end september there isnt really enough sun. i power fridge and a freezer at home if parked up by the house. in spain etc i power undercounter fridge freezer in the trailer and various other things .
i do have a battery to battery 24-12v converter in line from the truck to the trailer for when travelling. mind also 500 amp battery power. .
might be worth keeping your eye on ebay . panels can be cheap these days . they werent years ago when i first fitted mine. i bought second hand in morocco but still 200 quid each for the first 3 panels . in 2011 i bought 3 new ones locally via ebay for 150 quid each. the chap brought in a few pallets from india .
but you do see them on ebay for as little as 70 or so quid sometimes . i just use cheap pwm regulators , simple and they work. carry a couple of spare regs incase of emergency.
also power twintub washing machine when away , makes life simpler.
can almost say never use sites or have ehu when away. last campsite was in 2009 in spain at hospital de la infant. prefer free camping .
have fun and enjoy your travels.
 

BigMomma

Well-Known Member
. This time next year, all being well, we will be in the Algarve and not worrying at all about where the next top-up is coming from.
Welcome to the forum :thumb:

Just be aware that being on the Algarve does not necessarily mean continuous days of Solar power, it can, and does, often rain for days and can remain overcast which restricts the amount of energy you can gain purely from Solar power. Generally though the sun shines for the majority of the time but just be prepared that it can vary and three days with very limited solar energy can impact on you if living off grid ;)
 

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