Poor Man's TVan???

Submitted: Friday, Jun 12, 2009 at 20:35
ThreadID: 69762 Views:3626 Replies:6 FollowUps:4
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Just browsing EBay and came across a Corolla Station Wagon which had been chopped and turned into a camping trailer. Link
It got me thinking that this thing was identical to a TVan, but with extra side door access.

So, (assuming that you could get it engineered and registered) wouldn't a cut down station wagon or panel van (maybe LiteAce, Express etc) make a decent offroad camper??

It has reliable, well engineered suspension complete with shocks (might need a sping lift); a great lift up tailgate that seals out the dust; sliding doors each side (how speccy is that!) and lights etc are already there. You'd have to sort out the weight distibution - maybe put something heavy like a water tank behind the rear axle.

And you end up with a basic shell that functions like a TVan!

Just thinking.................comments? Who's done this?
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Reply By: Members Paul and Melissa (VIC) - Friday, Jun 12, 2009 at 20:52

Friday, Jun 12, 2009 at 20:52
Haha what a beauty, still needs a bit of work by the look of it though, i think its a mazda 323 chopped up by the way:))
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Follow Up By: Member - Phil G (SA) - Friday, Jun 12, 2009 at 21:18

Friday, Jun 12, 2009 at 21:18
Paul, Hehehe
Yeah, he went as far as fitting the curtains and a roofrack from the 1960's but must have had a mental block after that.

And I reckon you're right - its an early 323 which was still rear wheel drive. Maybe I could buy a front wheel drive vehicle, so the suspension is independant!!!
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Reply By: Geoff (Newcastle, NSW) - Saturday, Jun 13, 2009 at 00:11

Saturday, Jun 13, 2009 at 00:11
Hi Phil,
By the looks of it the firewood is aleady inside ready to go!

It's an interesting concept and really quite clever!

As you say, a poor mans Tvan!

For the rest of us, it's in Adelaide, you're in Adelaide, it's cheap, let us know how it goes!

Geoff

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Follow Up By: Member - Phil G (SA) - Saturday, Jun 13, 2009 at 00:24

Saturday, Jun 13, 2009 at 00:24
Hi Geoff,
I'd be putting the firewood on the roofrack and sleeping in the back!
I'm just thinking about the future - what will keep me occupied when I eventually retire and get sick of rolling out the swag. Might be a good project.

But I reckon I'd want a bigger wagon - a Mitsubishi Express or similar would have much more space in the back and has those nice sliding doors. You could have the camp kitchen slide out from below the bed, or maybe slide out from the back under the cover of that lift-up tailgate. The side/rear windows with a bit of tint would be good to sleep behind. the twin sliding door models would allow each person to get out their own side in the middle of the night!

Cheers
Phil
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Reply By: Member - Tony S (WA) - Saturday, Jun 13, 2009 at 00:47

Saturday, Jun 13, 2009 at 00:47
Mitubi bleep y whizbangs !!
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Reply By: macy - Saturday, Jun 13, 2009 at 17:01

Saturday, Jun 13, 2009 at 17:01
G'day
We are in the process of making a "poormans T-van" from a tojo personnel carrier. It's had the chassis cleaned and had a hitch put on and the body cut at the A pillar for the kitchen and tucker box to be fitted. Still looking for a rear bumper bar including spare wheel carrier for it, but may have to make it.
Cheers Mac
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Reply By: Bonz (Vic) - Thoughtfully- Saturday, Jun 13, 2009 at 17:40

Saturday, Jun 13, 2009 at 17:40
Interesting concept, I have seen many a ute cut into a trailer but this takes it a little farther, very interested to see the troopy mentioned above
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Follow Up By: Member - Phil G (SA) - Saturday, Jun 13, 2009 at 20:28

Saturday, Jun 13, 2009 at 20:28
Gday Bonz,

Yeah, chopping a wagon or van with lift up tailgate certainly gives some good options. They usually have strong springs and axles but the wagons are monocoque. The panel vans usually have a separate chassis, so I'd guess may be easier to convert. Maybe the other option is to drop a van body onto a flat trailer chassis?????

I've got years to work this out!! Retirement is a still a few more years away.

Cheers
Phil
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Reply By: equinox - Saturday, Jun 13, 2009 at 18:26

Saturday, Jun 13, 2009 at 18:26
Hi Phil,

Why don't you just chuck an A-Frame on top of the ute?

Image Could Not Be Found

The couple driving this were in their 70's. They accessed the entrance via a small ladder. They were doing a complete CSR crossing from south to north last year.

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Alan
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Follow Up By: Member - Phil G (SA) - Saturday, Jun 13, 2009 at 20:24

Saturday, Jun 13, 2009 at 20:24
Gday Alan,
Sheesh!!!! Is there no limit to what you can do with a farm truck!

Cheers
Phil
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