If you want to build yourself a solar-powered home on wheels, you’ll need three things:
1. A Ford E250
2. Four months
3. An internet connection
At least according to Imgur user AdventuresOfBigBird (real name Evan Jordan), a DIY builder who shared his build on the image-hosting site after converting a 2006 E250 he purchased on Craigslist into a vehicle he affectionately refers to as the “Adventuremobile.”
After taking possession of the van, Jordan spent a day ripping out all the factory trim and riveted cargo rails. He then used an angle grinder to completely strip the floor before priming, painting and putting down an insulated foundation that allowed him to install woodgrain Lonseal flooring.
In addition to outfitting the E250 in parquet, Jordan installed a propane tank, insulated the walls and roof, and attached a hightop cover that provides more than six feet of standing room in the van’s backseat before topping it off with a solar panel.
With the frame in place, Jordan wired the van with an electric system and installed a stove, sink, heater, refrigerator, kitchen cabinets, light switches, USB outlets, overhead LEDs, sound system and sleeping area with a memory foam mattress.
When everything was complete, Jordan celebrated with a dinner of van-made veggie tacos and shared his work online.
“I spent many hours researching how other people had done similar builds, and then I just winged it,” Jordan says. “Before I embarked on this build I had very little experience building things. I hadn't built anything in years. The internet is a wonderful resource for learning new things.”
Considering the whole thing cost him somewhere north of $8,500, we’d say Jordan’s investment in his DIY education was money well spent.