He is a puke/pearl coloured, loud, dented and well loved 1995 VW T4 Caravelle with over 310,000km on the clock. We picked him up locally from a friendly local family that had decided that after 10 years it was time for an upgrade. Fritz single handed raised 3 kids (took them to soccer practice, picked them up from school) and still has their names tattooed on his roof/seats in crayon and ink. All in all, he’s a loveable old van, that (hopefully) still has a sense of adventure (and an inability to drive faster than 90km/h)…… Could we possibly ask for a better companion to join us for our trip?
When Fritz joined our family he had a mild condition of flatulence and arthritis of the wheels. His exhaust was more holy than the Vatican City and every time we turn sharply his poor axel joints grind out a thumping melody of klanks. Upon further inspection we also found that he has a leaky rear differential gasket, 2 drive axels that need replacing, a jammed driver window and broken window lock. Luckily for me I have a good friend who is a mechanic and we will fix all of this (or as much as we can) before we leave. No time like the present to learn something new!
Lars getting involved with the exhaust refit
First was to replace his exhaust. Originally we thought we could just replace the back half but upon further inspection it was rusted from the engine all the way to the rear muffler. After a visit to our local DIY car shop we came back with various pipes and clamps which we fitted together like lego, clamped/glued together and strung up from the bottom of the car with the wire.
Next i began the process of removing interior back seats and cage. I used the same attatchements points from the seats/frame as the base to attatch my bed frame so that it could be easily removed and also to avoid drilling any new holes in the car.
Seats and frame removed. Spacious! Bedframe takes form
Working out a double folding bed system that works on a hanging hinge system i decide to have 2 seperate peices that would fold down to make the bed AND be detachable to be used as benches for cooking, sitting or studying.
Bed takes shape. First bed peice in place. Storage system under bed
After the bed was finshed we had to change both the front and back drive axels on the right side of the car and change the oil. Unfortunatley this all took place at 10:30pm the night before we had to drive to Sweden so Suss could get to a meeting for school! We finished some time around 3:30am. There are some that say I like to leave things to the last minute…….
2:20am Workshop Lars looking postive
The next morning we did one of the most hastey packs I have ever done to make sure everything we needed to bring was packed and the appartment was spotless for renting tenants. Amazingly we did it! We only forgot a few minimal things and manged to remember all the important stuff. After 13 long hours of driving we arrived in Sweden at Suss parents house…….
A sceptical suss inspects hastey the pack job in Sweden to see what we have forgotten…..
Next………..THE ADVENTURE BEGINS!