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Discussion Starter #1
136" Short Wheel base. Goal is to build a passenger and campervan combo with a pop top (Sportsmobile or Colorado Campervan) like what I did on a recent E-150 build. Gong to do something simple basically a Sprinter crew with a pop top that sleeps 4 and transports people to be as close to a VW weekender (that I rebuilt also) that I loved but was just to small. I will do a bed platform behind the front seat I think that can be removed if I want to have two rows of seats. I also left enough room that two cots can fit behind the front seat if I decide not to do a platform or want more versatility.

Phase 1:
windows, Seats, flooring
Going to use CR Laurence vent windows on drivers side. This window however cannot be swapped out with the factory slider window, I think they messed up on their template. Another thread confirmed that they don't have an exact fit for their vented windows. I heard however you can convert a the slider window to pop out...but I have yet to see this in person. I am hoping to do this, but if not I will have two vented windows and can roll down the fronts windows and put magnetic screens on them to get plenty of ventilation at night and keep bugs out.
Phase 2:
walls/sound dampening

Phase 3:
Pop Top


Thanks to Leo's thread I decided to go with sprinter seats I was able to trade for a longboard I had to a guy who had a few seats with out mounts. Ordered mounts and through some long calculations and measurements I was able to finally mount them. I decided to do 3 mounts in two rows so I can do a two or a three seat bench in either location. I was able to run a few bolts through frame rails or cross members, what I could not do I did full plates all the way across using 1/4 inch stainless steel plates. I wanted it to be as difficult as possible for the mounts to come through the floor due to the weight of the seats. My preference would have been to weld in braces, but no welder and I am pretty confident this will be strong enough...if there was a problem that would mean the entire van would be totaled and I would have more than a seat coming out. I was able to do two full length brackets on the front seat mount and one on the rear with two bolts through frame rails using as large as a washer/bracket as possible to take up as much area. This was a very long process to figure out mounting everything and aligning it up. I was able to get about 16" of legroom between the rows of seats. I have a two and a three row seats.

Some of the mounting options



Mounts finally done, now I will have to make templates for the floor. Plan is to build a 3/8 base then put a 1/2 inch flooring on top making the mounts flush to the floor.


Making first round template for the base floor. Use this template to make router guide to cut out the first base floor slots for the seat mounts.


More to come-cut out the base floor pieces that will sit on some vinyl flooring I got at home depot to reduce noise and noise of the plywood on floor. I first thought about using something else the the 1/8 to 1/16 inch thickness of this should be very close to the 15/16 the bottom of the mount is to the floor.
 

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Discussion Starter #3 (Edited)

Plywood flooring base to bring floor up so sprinter seat brackets fit flush. Lined bottom with sound dampener for wood flooring to keep it silent.



Floor now fits nice in flush with the brackets. This was a lot of work but final look is factory, just what I wanted. Worked out perfect with the height. Will finish edges with 3/4 inch edge trim so it keeps a factory look.

Windows finally installed! Next will be the camper top and finish the interior.





You an see like others the window vents are not a totally "flush" fit due to curves of the sides. I would rate the CR windows as an "ok", no other choices however to get the factory look.

This is how I will use the rear sleeping area. A Colorado Campervan top will be coming in March. Just booked the install!
 

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Wow. That looks so nice. Windows are really impressive looking. There are times when I've been tempted to put a window in the slider. It removes a blind spot when driving.
 

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Looks good. I hope you didn't get a hernia moving all those Sprinter seats around tho!
 

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Windows finally installed! Next will be the camper top and finish the interior.





You an see like others the window vents are not a totally "flush" fit due to curves of the sides. I would rate the CR windows as an "ok", no other choices however to get the factory look.

This is how I will use the rear sleeping area. A Colorado Campervan top will be coming in March. Just booked the install!
Window all around look great! I'm thinking about the same thing on my 159" WB. I had the widow behind the driver's door "professionally installed". Now I'm thinking, "I can do the two back ones myself!"

It appears that the metal ring attached to the glass for the back windows on both sides are offset to compensate for the thicker metal where the track for the sliding door is attached, whether it's there (passenger side) or not (drivers side).

Can you confirm what I'm seeing in the pictures? I plan on putting in the non-opening ones so the curve should look stock.

Any insights with regards to the window install would be appreciated.

Thanks,
Ed
 

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Discussion Starter #7
The rear quarter windows are smaller on the inside due to the sliding door. I personally would not install these myself...for a small amount saved you minimize risk, however any problem could be fixed with a welder, paint, and extra sheet metal. I think non opening ones should be ok. I can tell that difference is the window that stick out a little on bottom sticks in a little on top...hence the slight difference. I think this is because of the curve of the sides on it being a non OEM. I think no pops outs you would likely not have this problem. This could be installers lack of attention or poor fit from CR Laurence. I think the latter is true as the stock openings are not the same size as the CR laurence ones.

my non opening passenger side window (cr laurence) fits perfectly flush with factory sliding door window. I had the OEM windows tinted to match so everything looks factory.
 

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..my non opening passenger side window (cr laurence) fits perfectly flush with factory sliding door window. I had the OEM windows tinted to match so everything looks factory.
I would be adding the non-operating ones in the back. On the 159 WB that window is about 7' long! Could be an interesting install. I wasn't impressed with the installer theat did my driver side one, so I figured I might DIY the two back ones.

I didn't think about the tinting. My behind the driver CRL window is tinted a bit darker than the one in the slider. Original installer said it would match exactly - WRONG! But I like your idea, just tint the slider to match!:D

Thanks,
Ed
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Installed some Weather Tech matts. They work great as expected.

They have a small "lip" as pictured in between seats to catch everything incase a big spill or lots of water/snow

I also installed a secondary battery. See the "how to" section to follow the installation and details. Size 34/78 battery with Taylor battery box and Battery Doctor controller module. Fits great.


Sound proofing the panels to get ready for the camper top conversion and finishing the walls.Used RAAM Sound Dampener product Also had dealer program stereo to get rear speakers to work. 5SW program code.
Used RAAM Matt

Ensolite Layer on top of RAAM Matt

Made a pretty big difference but I think I need to use some Mass Loaded Vinyl with foam to add another layer of sound proofing.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
I decided to invest more in additional sound proofing. I already use RAAM Mat as well as ensolite from RAAM. I went ahead and purchased some MLV (mass loaded vinyl) with 1/4 in closed cell foam backing for additional sound proofing. This stuff is expensive and very heavy. Not sure if I will pit it into the doors due to the weight. 1 square foot is a lb! I put it over the wheel wells and had to cut it up in manageable pieces because it isn't very flexible. (Its like thick vinyl flooring with a foam pad) First time I have used this stuff and it did very noticeably make the van quieter for sure. I have almost $400 in sound proofing and haven't put it all in. I can say now I can hear the "wind" blowing through the windows.


This is picture of RAAM with beginning layering of MLV.


Finished the layer. I will tape up the seams with some black tape. This eventually will get covered when the walls are done and the rear bed is put in. You use high quality trim spray glue to get this stuff to stick. Hopefully I can make it stick on the walls. I plan on putting it on the fixed walls at least. This stuff would be great for the floor, but I already have 1 inch of flooring and some insulation on the floor. No way am I going to take that out and it would cost a small fortune to cover the entire floor with this stuff.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
I went ahead and put the MLV on all the panels except the doors (due to weight). This stuff really reduces the noise, so much so that now the wind is much louder than anything else, so unless I can seal the doors better, not going to make it much quieter. I might layer some additional Ensolite (RAAM product, closed cell foam) in the rear door, and maybe even put some MLV in the rear doors but the slider I think will be way to heavy to do this, not to mention the door would be so heavy, it would be hard to keep open or close as it's hard enough as it is.

I taped the seams up with duct tape just to bind everything together.

Glue - high quality trim automotive adhesive, spray on back of MLV foam and adhere to panel.


Raam Matt + MLV Layer


Rear quarter panel done


RAAM MAT on the rear two ceiling panels, these panels will not be cut out for the POP TOP that is going on next month. The other two will be cut out.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
I called CR Laurence about the window fit and they assured me it should be totally flush. Took it back to CVI and they made some tweeks and got it perfect. They had not installed the vent windows so there was some small installation changes they made to get it to fit after talking to CR Laurence. Both the CR and CVI correct the issue and had great service in the end. Looks totally factory and very satisfied with the fit and finish now.

FLUSH -perfect fit now

 

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Discussion Starter #14
New Top

Got the camper top put in and had the interior finished out with a rear bed. Here some pics during the build. Colorado Campervan Top, this is my 2nd one, with the first on an E150. They do a great job! I will post more pictures once I get the cushions finished and clean the van up. Just drove it back to SoCal today, got 16 MPG averaging 72 miles an hour.

"CONSTRUCTION PICS"

TOP BEING PUT ON


CANVAS


INTERIOR PANELS - REAR BED WILL STRADDLE ON THE SIDE RIBS. I designed everything so you can remove all two rows of seats, have a bed or take it out, and still have option to empty entire van for cargo or use like a truck. Really happy with how everything turned out. The panels are not totally done in these photos, I will post more later with everything completed and cleaned up.




 

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Discussion Starter #15
After everything in with the sound dampening, the van is SUPER quite now. Totally like any normal car. Worth doing the extra work and finishing everything out, it's just like a car now. Worth every penny.

Total build on top of the van cost me around 16k + bunch of labor on my own, finding some super deals, and have CCV do interior, ceiling, and camper top. Not bad in my opinion and certainly now have a van worth a lot more than what I put into it, and its 98% done. Just have to do some final touches like window blinds/black out shades, tie downs for cargo, coolers etc...
 

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Discussion Starter #19
The window panels (trim around windows) are covered with foam below the felt to help with contours and in some areas stretched over the metal. The foam underneath gives some structure and was a simple solution to get a clean look. It could even be done better likely 2nd time around with more foam to give a better contour and increase durability.
 
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