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Discussion Starter #1
I am currently searching for my ProMaster, and I'm getting antsy as I want to start this project soon.

About 10 years ago I bought a 1976/73 (can't remember which) Chinook Toyota with a pop-up top. I am a fan of Star Trek and as a hobby did some cosmetic stuff on the outside to make it look like a shuttle craft - I called it Marco Polo.

I don't intend to go to that extent with my new campervan, but I will include a vinyl sticker to "name" my campervan.

As I work through my vehicle search and build I'll post updates here. The vehicle search may be over as soon as tomorrow...we'll see what I can get from the dealership at the end of the month.

DEAL or NO DEAL??
http://www.promasterforum.com/forum/showpost.php?p=387066&postcount=32

http://www.promasterforum.com/forum/report.php?p=387066
 

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With a storm trooper outfit you will be set. Welcome.
 
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Discussion Starter #3 (Edited)
**groan** storm trooper? different bad guys


RD - I'm looking at replicating a lot of your layout. between you and klunkytoons I have a pretty good idea of how to go about this.

I'm not able to view the pictures of your build though. Am I doing something wrong? I can see klunkytoons pics.
 

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Star Trek, Star Wars, oops!
I am currently traveling outside the country and only have my iPad mini. If you can't get them by Feb. 14th send me a PM and I'll email a nice set to you. They should show if the photo site tinypic.com is up. I checked, it is.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
No worries RD...just as long as we agree that Start Trek is better. ;)

So I found a nice window van and I love the idea about being able to see everything outside, but I'm trying to figure out if it's possible to swap a few of the factory install windows with CRL or other brand that actually open (slide or crank). Still reading through the other threads, but it looks like most scrap the idea and stay away from the window vans pretty much for that reason.

AP
 

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RD's Images and Windows

PopeAng & RD - I'm having no problem seeing the images in RD's build. I checked tinypic and it seems to be working fine. PopeAng - could the problem be on your end??

PopeAng - I owned a Ford Econoline cargo van and a window van. I had both for years and both were campervans. My 2 cents - I opted to buy a cargo PM so that I can buy the exact windows that I want and put them where I want. It didn't hurt that it was on the lot and they gave me a great price. The one thing I missed with the Fords was the ability to find aftermarket windows that opened and had bug screens. It doesn't appear to be a problem with the PM. And, as you have probably read, it seems that the factory windows are not the same size as the aftermarket so replacement could be a problem?????
 

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Discussion Starter #7 (Edited)
It's probably on my end. I hop on here at work for a few minutes when I need a mental break. Something probably needs to be updated on my computer but need administrative rights to do that.

Thanks for the input regarding cargo PM over a window PM. If the miles where lower on the PM I'm looking at, I would find a way to make it work. The windows all around look great. Now if I want that I have to factor that into my budget.

I'm thinking my biggest expense is going to be my electrical. I definitely will be going solar. I know Renogy seems to be one of the top picks, and I think I see about $650-$900 as the average cost for electrical.

Has anyone seen or have experience with Humless - Reliable Power Systems? https://www.humless.com/shop/

There is a "deal" here (http://sport.woot.com/offers/humless-portable-solar-generator-kit-1?ref=sp_cnt_wp_15_1) on one of their portable solar generator kits. I'd love to hear input regarding this. It is considerably more than what I am seeing as average cost on here using the Renogy panels, but I don't think that comes with all the other electrical stuff. The Humless looks very simplistic compared to the Renogy kits. I'm all for being simple as I have 0 (zero) experience with electrical and even absolutely hate connecting car batteries.
 

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I would be cautious about any kit as all the low priced ones seem to have PWT controllers and you want an MPPT controller sized for your panels. I think you can do the solar $500 or near. Amazon has 100 watt panels and the controller and the correct wire and combines for paralleling the panels. BTW only one wire extension is needed as you cut it in two to connect at the controller. I think I bought a 20 ft cable.
Unless you are a power hog 200 watts is fine for refrig., fan, lights, electronics charging, etc.
Search solar here and trust GaryBIS.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Bought my PM today!! Used 2014 14,500-ish miles for a great price. It's a base model so no backup camera and no UConnect, I can add that stuff as I have the funds.

I'll be able to pick it up later this week. Probably will drive a rental the 3 hours on Sat morning and drive Marco Polo back.

So excited....I want to throw a cot, my sleeping bag, some water, and my dog and I find somewhere close to sleep Sat night. HOA is a pain so driveway is not an option.

We'll figure it out.

First few things on the list.
step bars or runner boards
Windows
Vent
That will give me time to get acquainted with Marco Polo and really figure out needs vs wants. And which order I can best complete them.
 

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Congratulations on your purchase. I like your idea of learning about the van by starting out small. Go for it.
 

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Which step bars?

Bought my PM today!! Used 2014 14,500-ish miles for a great price. It's a base model so no backup camera and no UConnect, I can add that stuff as I have the funds.

I'll be able to pick it up later this week. Probably will drive a rental the 3 hours on Sat morning and drive Marco Polo back.

So excited....I want to throw a cot, my sleeping bag, some water, and my dog and I find somewhere close to sleep Sat night. HOA is a pain so driveway is not an option.

We'll figure it out.

First few things on the list.
step bars or runner boards
Windows
Vent
That will give me time to get acquainted with Marco Polo and really figure out needs vs wants. And which order I can best complete them.
First of congratulations on your new van! Seems to be a good week for new PM buys. I've had mine now for a couple of days and already thinking some step bars might be in order, what are you considering?
 

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Discussion Starter #12
First of congratulations on your new van! Seems to be a good week for new PM buys. I've had mine now for a couple of days and already thinking some step bars might be in order, what are you considering?
Thanks!

I was looking at Carr's Hoop Steps. I just need that little bit of height to step up. Price seems reasonable compared to others...I'd do a 10" step at each door, and a 20" step at the sliding door.

I got the idea from proeddie...here...http://www.promasterforum.com/forum/showpost.php?p=321402&postcount=11
 

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Discussion Starter #13
I have on order my roof vent (MaxxAir - white w/ remote from Amazon) and plan on ordering my windows (still undecided on style) and solar panels (Renogy kit) tonight.

Getting insurance was a pain. I think part of it has to do with insurance companies policies in Virginia - anyway I think I got it figured out. Progressive got me a policy I can work with.

Now onto a separate issue, parking. I knew I could not park my PM in my driveway (HOA); however, I did (kinda still do) think I could park on the street outside my development, which happens to run right below my town-home. However, after reading through my county's parking policy I appear to live within a "Community Parking District" (the fine print) and within a CPD motor homes are not allowed to be parked. I am not there yet. Since it's not really a motor home and I see other High Roof Sprinters (a really big one) and the street is full of other commercial vehicles (likely registered to a business), I think I'll be good. I do worry that when I put in the windows it will stick out as not your ordinary commercial vehicle, so I'm trying to find less conspicuous windows. Taking suggestions - prefer to order in US to save on shipping.

Hopefully I'll have enough of my build done that I can store it as an RV on a local military base. I need to figure out what their requirements are for an "RV". Under 21" it's $35/month to store.
 

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Yes, as much as I love my Motion Windows, they do suggest RV. It has been suggested that a magnetic florist sign works well. Yells commercial and nothing worth stealing.
 

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Vegetables, try a custom mag sign with cabbage.
Drain cleaning sign will keep everyone away too. And probably you could park in front of a house with a hoa!
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Vegetables, try a custom mag sign with cabbage.
Drain cleaning sign will keep everyone away too. And probably you could park in front of a house with a hoa!
Yes, as much as I love my Motion Windows, they do suggest RV. It has been suggested that a magnetic florist sign works well. Yells commercial and nothing worth stealing.
MsNomer - I really want to replicate the openness of your design - including using Motion Windows. If I can hold off for a bit I'll install them last and then park at the RV storage on a military base.

I like the idea of the magnetic sign - I have a few things in mind. I am an associate/consultant for Isagenix - not really in it as a business as I just buy the products for my own personal use; however, I could use one of the companies magnetic signs. Thanks for the ideas! I might be able to get a window installed too!
 

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Downsides of waiting to install windows: losing close-up access to the window area and containing the metal shavings that want to fly everywhere.

Looking forward to seeing your version. ?
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Downsides of waiting to install windows: losing close-up access to the window area and containing the metal shavings that want to fly everywhere.

Looking forward to seeing your version. ?
Thanks for the info. I remember you talking about trying to contain the shavings when you did yours.

How well do your windows keep any rain out? I am going back and forth on the CRL and Motion Windows. I can buy two of Motion for one CRL. The big point for the CRL was the awning (now i see they don't have screens - is this right) and the full window look, but is the cost worth it...I don't know.
 

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We don't open them in the rain. Logic says some rain will come in. As a test, perhaps I should open the one in the slider where it wouldn't matter.
 
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