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Old 02-13-2018, 03:11 AM   #101
grantwilson
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Default Re: 2017 4x4 Broverland Build

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Originally Posted by dynaco1 View Post
Grant,

I like the bay beach pictures.

Where is this beach located?

Can anyone purchase a beach permit and drive on the sand? I'm curious if 4WD would be necessary.

Have you spent the night on the beach in your new van?
pretty much most of the east coast of florida you can.

I will be camping on the beach next month. Still a bit too cold to enjoy it. Going to the Amelia Island Concourse de Elegance. Happens the only place in northeast florida to camp on the beach is right by it.
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Old 02-13-2018, 05:34 PM   #102
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Default Re: 2017 4x4 Broverland Build

Hey thanks for the quick response. I guess I should have specified the Taco + FWC. I'm thinking of making the jump from a Tundra + FWC, but kind of as you point out above.. I'm really not sure if it's worth it. Seems like the determining factor is how much time you actually spend hanging out in the van (or camper).
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Old 02-13-2018, 08:00 PM   #103
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Default Re: 2017 4x4 Broverland Build

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Originally Posted by grantwilson View Post
It rides much better IMO. It is smooth and has more power even with more weight. It gets 5mpg better. The trans doesn't hunt like my 3rd gen did. 5th to 3rd all the time going up hills. Garbage.


do i think it is worth 62,000. And at this point like 85,000? No. But there isn't much else to do what it can do. I mean, 2018 and a factory headunit isnt touchscreen? Pure Garbage.

But the systems in the van are well thought out and seem to be quite robust. The ease that everything is accessible to build is great. The addition of the extra diesel port, and second battery terminal under the seat and stuff is a great touch.

Overall, super happy with the swap. Will be taking it for its maiden voyage this weekend in the woods. Pretty excited.
You are going to have a blast!! I agree that the aux diesel line and battery equipment are both great pieces of kit. Simplified my heater and electrical install and provides a clean integration without much headache.

I think of the van cost like this:

Time with family + the opportunity to leave on adventure at a moments notice + not having to pack everything + comfort wherever we go + ability to get off the beaten path + a bigass 4x4 van that is universally cool = priceless.

$90K+ is <<< priceless therefore the cost is justified.

I also just look at it as paying for a decades worth of vacations upfront.

My experience transitioning from an f-150 is admittedly a bit different. The truck was quick, even when completely loaded down, though I was often over GVWR, and the select shift 6spd is a stout, time tested tranny with good logic controlling it. I cant say I get better mileage in the sprinter unfortunately. Its hard to beat the 18mpg or so I averaged in the truck. I miss how coffin quiet the truck was in comparison to the van. Otherwise, the van is proving to be a stout and reliable mule for camping, travel and adventure. I would not go back, and that is coming from someone who kept his truck for 6 months after buying the van and ultimately decided that the van was good enough to not need/want the truck anymore.

ril - its more than how much time you spend hanging out in it, its how much time you spend driving it, how much time it takes to get ready to go, the distance you can travel and length of time you can be away versus the FWC. Being able to park and go to sleep without getting out of the van is great when pulling in late at night. So is having enough storage for the things you want on longer trips without severely overloading the vehicle.

For us it has become more than a camping vehicle, its the vehicle we take anywhere over about 100 miles because it makes everything so easy. We have small children though and the upsides of the van with small kids over a truck with camper are innumerable.

Last edited by OffroadHamster; 02-13-2018 at 08:05 PM.
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Old 02-14-2018, 01:37 AM   #104
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Default Re: 2017 4x4 Broverland Build

I have a 4x4 crew arriving in May (or so they say). I am enjoying the build log Grant, I will use it as inspiration for my van build this summer.

OffroadHamster, I also moving from a F150 to the Sprinter. I agree it is very quiet riding, especially for a truck, which i will miss.

Cheers, Mike
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Old 02-14-2018, 05:13 AM   #105
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Default Re: 2017 4x4 Broverland Build

Grant, your van looks awesome.........

I need one!
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Old 02-19-2018, 02:19 PM   #106
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Default Re: 2017 4x4 Broverland Build

Ok. Lets get yall up to speed


Took a day or two to build the cabinet for the fridge and soon to be closet.


Untitled by Grant Wilson, on Flickr
Had to figure out a way to mount up the fridge to the enclosure and save as much space as possible.
I ended up using 3/4" Aluminum block, some socket head m6 bolts. Transferred the pattern from the handle to make the mount holes, used an endmill to counterbore so its all flush, then used the slides to make a pattern for the actual mounting, drilled and tapped them.
Untitled by Grant Wilson, on Flickr
Untitled by Grant Wilson, on Flickr
This let me make the cabinet as compact as possible, and keep everything nice and close to the fridge so it doesn't stress it. Can't mess up my precious ice cream holder!

From there I Bent up some rear pieces on the roll bender to fit the contours of the van
Untitled by Grant Wilson, on Flickr
Untitled by Grant Wilson, on Flickr
A little bit of welding and it gets us a solid base
Untitled by Grant Wilson, on Flickr
A little more welding and a burnt phone screen later, we have the carcas
Untitled by Grant Wilson, on Flickr
Untitled by Grant Wilson, on Flickr
Far from done, but done enough to hold the cooler in while we go camping this past weekend! First weekend out. Can't be happier with the performance of this beast in the softest sugar sand known to man
Spent the weekend in Ocala National Forest, went to good ol Juniper Springs and even found a patch!
Untitled by Grant Wilson, on Flickr
Untitled by Grant Wilson, on Flickr
Ocala national forest by Grant Wilson, on Flickr
Ocala national forest by Grant Wilson, on Flickr
Ocala national forest by Grant Wilson, on Flickr
Ocala national forest by Grant Wilson, on Flickr
Ocala national forest by Grant Wilson, on Flickr
Ocala national forest by Grant Wilson, on Flickr

Also. bumpers came in this morning, so there is that
Untitled by Grant Wilson, on Flickr
Untitled by Grant Wilson, on Flickr
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Old 02-19-2018, 11:15 PM   #107
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Default Re: 2017 4x4 Broverland Build

Tite
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Old 02-20-2018, 05:17 PM   #108
grantwilson
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Default Re: 2017 4x4 Broverland Build

So big moves for little people

Bumpers!

Aluminess bumpers front and rear.
I will say this. They are the best packaged, safe and sound bumpers I have ever bought. I like the instructions (about 85-90% complete) and the fitment was really spot on. Have about 2.5 hours into it, and maybe a few more into the rear end of it to go. Front end fits perfect with zero issues. Rear end fits well, but wish it was an actual bumper instead of an add on, but i get why it isnt.

Overall, 10/10 would spend an arm and a leg again.

bumpers by Grant Wilson, on Flickr
bumpers by Grant Wilson, on Flickr
bumpers by Grant Wilson, on Flickr
bumpers by Grant Wilson, on Flickr
bumpers by Grant Wilson, on Flickr
bumpers by Grant Wilson, on Flickr
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Old 02-20-2018, 10:06 PM   #109
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Default Re: 2017 4x4 Broverland Build

I also wish it was a bumper instead of an "over-bumper" and tucked a little better. The departure angle sacrifice is fairly significant.
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Old 02-20-2018, 11:31 PM   #110
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Default Re: 2017 4x4 Broverland Build

Having the sensors in the bumper and it being a unibody vehicle don't make that very feasible... I'll be rigging up some skid plates for it though, at least I hope to bend some aluminum for easier skidding off of ledges (as I know it will drag).
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