Build Spreadsheet, What Should I Order First?

thenunzzz

New member
I got my T1N this week and am ready to start the build! I didn't want to order anything until I had the van, but now I am ready to start ordering and don't know where to start. I don't want to just start ordering everything and then find out I missed some important things and go over budget.

Can you checkout my spreadsheet and let me know if I have all the bases covered and any suggestions you might have? Also what to order first? KEEP IN MIND THE SHEET IS ONLY THE BIG STUFF. I HAVEN'T ADDED THE LITTLE THINGS LIKE WIRES, HARDWARE, BUILDING MATERIALS, ETC. I HAVE THE BUDGET FOR ALL THAT.

HERE'S THE SPREADSHEET: https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1qMIirfNANj57tfmFuePyc3ZLJEf5X6zZddf_G5g3NGw/edit?usp=sharing

IMG_0548.jpg
 

sparkplug

Active member
Without even looking at the sheet I can already tell you that you WILL forget to order stuff and you WILL go over budget :ROFLMAO:

Looking at the spreadsheet I notice that you have a gas cooker but no propane bottle / tank. I also notice that there isn't a vapour barrier listed. You might also want to consider some sound proofing such as rattletrap or similar.

There's also nothing in there for furniture (timber? / 80-20?) or bedding or any entertainment (will you want a TV or projector, bluetooth speaker? Raspberry Pi or other micro PC built in somewhere, will you want a satellite dish or WiFi hotspot for internet, or maybe built in speakers in the back doors or ceiling etc?).

You have solar panels, but no cable entry gland.

I would also suggest that you put in some circuit breakers / isolator switches. I have one which kills the solar power before it hits my MPPT controller, one which isolates the leisure batteries from the alternator charger / vehicle battery, one which isolates the leisure batteries from the fuse box, one which isolates my secondary fuse box in my charging station (a lockable area for phones and gadgets etc). Everything can be isolated from everything else.

You also don't seem to have curtains or any privacy screens.

I also added a couple of fire extinguishers and a fire blanket to my build.

I'm not seeing a sink or tap listed or any water filtration system.

Will you be installing a toilet of some description?

How about an awning? Bicycle rack? Spare wheel mount on rear doors?, roof rack?, ladder? Light bar? Air horns (compressor for them can double as a tire inflator - I'm soooo tempted)

I would also spend some time now looking at your wiring requirements in quite a lot of detail.

I didn't know enough about voltage drop in 12v systems and ended up replacing a lot of cabling for thicker stuff.

Knowing exactly what needs to go where and how thick the cable needs to be is worth doing right away.

I would also make a plan of the sequence of work you are going to do so you can plan what to order and when.

Unless you have a lot of storage space ordering it all at once is likely to be overwhelming.

I'm guessing that the build will go something along the lines of:

1) Strip everything out, deal with any rust and mechanical work the van might need.

2) Cut holes for the windows and skylights and get those installed first. It's easier to pick up any metal filings now than when you've started panelling the van. Make any holes you want for roof mounted antennas and for your solar cable entry glands. Now is also the time to make any holes you want for drainage or drop out vents or to bolt furniture or seating or L track through the floor. Any other holes in your van for water fill points, electrical hookup, cassette toilets or whatever. Will you be mounting the solar panels on something like Unistrut? Now's the time to make the holes and mount that channel.

3) Put in your rattletrap, insulation, vapour barrier, wiring and plumbing and panelling.

4) Install gas / water / electrical systems

5) Build cabinets / cupboards / furniture / bed

You will inevitably also learn how to play postal roulette.

The rules are simple:

During the day, think of as many things as you can which you will need for your next part of the project and keep adding them to your cart in eBay / Amazon.

At the end of the day checkout and pay for it all.

You win points for every item that arrives in time or ahead of time and you lose points for every item which arrives late and holds you up.

You lose double points for things you should have ordered but forgot to, you lose treble points for anything you double ordered and as the 'Joker' you win or lose quadruple points for items ordered from China depending on if/when they arrive and if they work when they get there.

You will get a lot of stuff wrong, you will end up doing stuff twice, or three times. You will change your mind about where stuff should go or realise that something you planned simply won't work.

That's just part of the journey. There's a wealth of knowledge and experience on here - there are five ways to approach every task and ten people who will insist that theirs is the best way to do it :p:. You will end up buying a bunch of tools you hadn't thought of and in my case even some I didn't know existed (plunge saw and track was a revelation)

I'm sure I've missed a few things - but hopefully that's been helpful.

Keep asking and keep letting us know how you're getting on.
 
Last edited:

borabora

Active member
Without even looking at the sheet I can already tell you that you WILL forget to order stuff and you WILL go over budget :ROFLMAO:

Looking at the spreadsheet I notice that you have a gas cooker but no propane bottle / tank. I also notice that there isn't a vapour barrier listed. You might also want to consider some sound proofing such as rattletrap or similar.

There's also nothing in there for furniture (timber? / 80-20?) or bedding or any entertainment (will you want a TV or projector, bluetooth speaker? Raspberry Pi or other micro PC built in somewhere, will you want a satellite dish or WiFi hotspot for internet, or maybe built in speakers in the back doors or ceiling etc?).

You have solar panels, but no cable entry gland.

I would also suggest that you put in some circuit breakers / isolator switches. I have one which kills the solar power before it hits my MPPT controller, one which isolates the leisure batteries from the alternator charger / vehicle battery, one which isolates the leisure batteries from the fuse box, one which isolates my secondary fuse box in my charging station (a lockable area for phones and gadgets etc). Everything can be isolated from everything else.

You also don't seem to have curtains or any privacy screens.

I also added a couple of fire extinguishers and a fire blanket to my build.

I'm not seeing a sink or tap listed or any water filtration system.

Will you be installing a toilet of some description?

How about an awning? Bicycle rack? Spare wheel mount on rear doors?, roof rack?, ladder? Light bar? Air horns (compressor for them can double as a tire inflator - I'm soooo tempted)

I would also spend some time now looking at your wiring requirements in quite a lot of detail.

I didn't know enough about voltage drop in 12v systems and ended up replacing a lot of cabling for thicker stuff.

Knowing exactly what needs to go where and how thick the cable needs to be is worth doing right away.

I would also make a plan of the sequence of work you are going to do so you can plan what to order and when.

Unless you have a lot of storage space ordering it all at once is likely to be overwhelming.

I'm guessing that the build will go something along the lines of:

1) Strip everything out, deal with any rust and mechanical work the van might need.

2) Cut holes for the windows and skylights and get those installed first. It's easier to pick up any metal filings now than when you've started panelling the van. Make any holes you want for roof mounted antennas and for your solar cable entry glands. Now is also the time to make any holes you want for drainage or drop out vents or to bolt furniture or seating or L track through the floor. Any other holes in your van for water fill points, electrical hookup, cassette toilets or whatever. Will you be mounting the solar panels on something like Unistrut? Now's the time to make the holes and mount that channel.

3) Put in your rattletrap, insulation, vapour barrier, wiring and plumbing and panelling.

4) Install gas / water / electrical systems

5) Build cabinets / cupboards / furniture / bed

You will inevitably also learn how to play postal roulette.

The rules are simple:

During the day, think of as many things as you can which you will need for your next part of the project and keep adding them to your cart in eBay / Amazon.

At the end of the day checkout and pay for it all.

You win points for every item that arrives in time or ahead of time and you lose points for every item which arrives late and holds you up.

You lose double points for things you should have ordered but forgot to, you lose treble points for anything you double ordered and as the 'Joker' you win or lose quadruple points for items ordered from China depending on if/when they arrive and if they work when they get there.

You will get a lot of stuff wrong, you will end up doing stuff twice, or three times. You will change your mind about where stuff should go or realise that something you planned simply won't work.

That's just part of the journey. There's a wealth of knowledge and experience on here - there are five ways to approach every task and ten people who will insist that theirs is the best way to do it :p:. You will end up buying a bunch of tools you hadn't thought of and in my case even some I didn't know existed (plunge saw and track was a revelation)

I'm sure I've missed a few things - but hopefully that's been helpful.

Keep asking and keep letting us know how you're getting on.
I think you should add a case of craft beer for sparkplug to your spreadsheet!

I am sure you have had that insight yourself before but the stuff that ends up being inaccessible or at least very difficult to access needs to be installed first (duh!). That would be electrical and plumbing. Anticipating future luxuries that you might not have in your initial build and putting the relatively cheap infrastructure into place now to support these luxuries will save you headaches in the future. There's a lot of them and you have to know where to draw the line. For example:

- Shore power
- Generator
- Roof A/C
- Pressure water
- Water heater
- Shower/toilet
- Black water tank
- Outside shower
- Heater
- Roof rack (once paneling is in roof rack can't be installed in NCV3 not sure about T1N)
- More solar
- Solar water heater
- ...and so on
 

Brad75

2013 NCV3
Self recovery equipment is a must for a 2wd van. 2 things are almost gaurenteed to happen to you once you hit the road. You’ll get stuck and when you do, you won’t have cell phone reception so be prepared!


-receiver hitch D ring shackle
-flat tire repair kit
-tire chains
-breaker bar with correct socket for wheels
-air compressor
-traction boards (if you have the room)
-bottle jack with base for soft ground
-kinetic rope
-tow strap
-soft shackles
-full size shovel
-axe/saw
-mini sledge
-adze/pick or small intrenching tool (digging tools)
-small 4x6 tarp for working on the ground
 

thenunzzz

New member
Without even looking at the sheet I can already tell you that you WILL forget to order stuff and you WILL go over budget :ROFLMAO:

Looking at the spreadsheet I notice that you have a gas cooker but no propane bottle / tank. I also notice that there isn't a vapour barrier listed. You might also want to consider some sound proofing such as rattletrap or similar.

There's also nothing in there for furniture (timber? / 80-20?) or bedding or any entertainment (will you want a TV or projector, bluetooth speaker? Raspberry Pi or other micro PC built in somewhere, will you want a satellite dish or WiFi hotspot for internet, or maybe built in speakers in the back doors or ceiling etc?).

You have solar panels, but no cable entry gland.

I would also suggest that you put in some circuit breakers / isolator switches. I have one which kills the solar power before it hits my MPPT controller, one which isolates the leisure batteries from the alternator charger / vehicle battery, one which isolates the leisure batteries from the fuse box, one which isolates my secondary fuse box in my charging station (a lockable area for phones and gadgets etc). Everything can be isolated from everything else.

You also don't seem to have curtains or any privacy screens.

I also added a couple of fire extinguishers and a fire blanket to my build.

I'm not seeing a sink or tap listed or any water filtration system.

Will you be installing a toilet of some description?

How about an awning? Bicycle rack? Spare wheel mount on rear doors?, roof rack?, ladder? Light bar? Air horns (compressor for them can double as a tire inflator - I'm soooo tempted)

I would also spend some time now looking at your wiring requirements in quite a lot of detail.

I didn't know enough about voltage drop in 12v systems and ended up replacing a lot of cabling for thicker stuff.

Knowing exactly what needs to go where and how thick the cable needs to be is worth doing right away.

I would also make a plan of the sequence of work you are going to do so you can plan what to order and when.

Unless you have a lot of storage space ordering it all at once is likely to be overwhelming.

I'm guessing that the build will go something along the lines of:

1) Strip everything out, deal with any rust and mechanical work the van might need.

2) Cut holes for the windows and skylights and get those installed first. It's easier to pick up any metal filings now than when you've started panelling the van. Make any holes you want for roof mounted antennas and for your solar cable entry glands. Now is also the time to make any holes you want for drainage or drop out vents or to bolt furniture or seating or L track through the floor. Any other holes in your van for water fill points, electrical hookup, cassette toilets or whatever. Will you be mounting the solar panels on something like Unistrut? Now's the time to make the holes and mount that channel.

3) Put in your rattletrap, insulation, vapour barrier, wiring and plumbing and panelling.

4) Install gas / water / electrical systems

5) Build cabinets / cupboards / furniture / bed

You will inevitably also learn how to play postal roulette.

The rules are simple:

During the day, think of as many things as you can which you will need for your next part of the project and keep adding them to your cart in eBay / Amazon.

At the end of the day checkout and pay for it all.

You win points for every item that arrives in time or ahead of time and you lose points for every item which arrives late and holds you up.

You lose double points for things you should have ordered but forgot to, you lose treble points for anything you double ordered and as the 'Joker' you win or lose quadruple points for items ordered from China depending on if/when they arrive and if they work when they get there.

You will get a lot of stuff wrong, you will end up doing stuff twice, or three times. You will change your mind about where stuff should go or realise that something you planned simply won't work.

That's just part of the journey. There's a wealth of knowledge and experience on here - there are five ways to approach every task and ten people who will insist that theirs is the best way to do it :p:. You will end up buying a bunch of tools you hadn't thought of and in my case even some I didn't know existed (plunge saw and track was a revelation)

I'm sure I've missed a few things - but hopefully that's been helpful.

Keep asking and keep letting us know how you're getting on.
Thank you for the awesome detailed reply! All the things like furniture, lumber, solar entry glands, etc. things of that nature I haven't added to the spreadsheet because I either just haven't taken the time to do so and know I need them and would rather add them as I go or I already have it covered like in the case of plumbing. My old man has worked for MOEN Plumbing for 40 years so he's got overstock on all my plumbing needs fortunately.

The order of operations you mentioned was very helpful though! I am going to start with skylights, Maxxair fan, solar panel entry, windows, plumbing, heater. All the needs for drilling and cutting first. Then electrical and insulation and so on.

I should have mentioned I am building this van to sell, so I am leaving some things like toilet and customizable things for the consumer. I am just building a solid high quality off-grid foundation.
 

Brad75

2013 NCV3
.

I should have mentioned I am building this van to sell, so I am leaving some things like toilet and customizable things for the consumer. I am just building a solid high quality off-grid foundation.
There’s aN extremely high chance that whoever is interested in your van will come across your posts here and see your DIY questions, not the ideal situation you want to be in as a seller. Your thread here is literally “what should I order first?” 🤣😳
 

sparkplug

Active member
Do you already have a buyer or is this a speculative sale?

I suspect that when you add up all the time and materials you probably won't be turning a profit on a T1N.

Still, if you break even and have fun doing it then that's OK :thumbup:

If the object is to make some money in your spare time then there are more profitable ways of doing that.
 

thenunzzz

New member
For reference, someone I know just sold their 07 for $50k and their electrical system wasn't even half the capacity of mine. I will be using only high quality products in mine. I'm no home depot special type of builder. I used to design and build custom reef aquariums, so I am handy with projects like this and have friends and family that can help with other specialized jobs in the build. Just wanted a second set of eyes before I started ordering everything.
 

autostaretx

Erratic Member
Remember that the idea is to keep (most of) the water *out*

--dick
 

RVBarry

Active member
Hi, note Victron equipment may need one or more of the following for initial setup and ongoing use:
a. USB to VE.x cable
b. Bluetooth to VE.x adapter
c. Control panels (independent or device, or consolidated GX etc.)

A good reseller should have docs with example configurations.
 

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