Andrew approached us with an idea: how about a uniquely crafted van that will take him to a pretty decent surf spot, like Baja California. The van just needed to be a comfortable and simple place to sleep between the exciting moments of surfing, with room for his fiancé and his recently adopted Mexican street dog.

Yeah, we can make that happen.

In two months, we helped transform his standard body Ford Transit into his ideal adventure van. We installed our packaged solar power system, awning, coin-grip flooring, vinyl flooring, a DC isotherm refrigerator, a window behind the driver’s seat, insulated boxes over the wheel well, a mahogany removable dining table, swivel seat bases, an outlet near his bed to charge electronics while he sleeps…

But what was so beautiful about this project was Tom’s freedom to add personal creative detail to the design. We don’t just build a box for people to transport themselves in- anyone can do that. We are here to provide you with our craft while giving you a space to make it your own..

To start, Tom built a small shelf near the bed for Andrew to organize his bedquarter necessities. It’s small enough to put your glasses, phone, and watch somewhere so you’re not scrambling to find them in the morning. It is deep enough that these items will not fall off the shelf when headed off road to get to the ultimate surf spot. Van organizational frustrations assuaged while streamlining morning rituals so that Andrew could catch the early morning waves? Check.

Then Tom built a wonderfully detailed refrigerator cabinet with a mahogany counter-top. It has enough lip to allow for the removable mahogany dining table to lie flush when stored away. Next to the cabinet is where the dining table’s support can be securely stored while Andrew is driving and does not need to be dining. Making sure that your meals can be enjoyed with others without compromising space? Check.

Next, Tom added insets near the bed to allow for Andrew and Ellie, his fiancé, to sleep side-to-side in the back of his van. This allowed the van to decrease in bed space and increase in living-activity space. We can check this one off as “really darn smart”.

Finally, Ken, one of our team members, added color matched trimming inside the van to tie the space together. It runs the full length of the living space, a design detail that connotes “home” and not just “car”. Home, not car. Check.

Simplicity is hard to achieve, even harder when such a small space could easily overemphasize any embellishment. Tom and our team counteract that by adding art into the usability of each installed piece. We could duplicate the Land Yacht, but we don’t want to. It’s Andrew’s now.


To read the summary of the features built into this van, visit the project’s gallery page.

By Jeni Chan