72' Dodge Xplorer


#1

Hello Everyone!

My name is Nate and this is my 1972 Dodge Xplorer. She’s 46 years old, not an inch of rust on her, almost 20 feet long, and runs great. [96,000 miles]


I’ve (almost) completely gutted the inside. I put in some bamboo flooring, insulated one interior panel, installed a roof vent, got a tune up, remedied all the roof leaks, and I’m currently working on the bed area/storage underneath. That being said, I still have a lot of questions and concerns. Here’s a short list:

  • Can she make it to the West Coast (I live in NC), also - how much would that trip cost?
  • Which solar panels are right for me? The top is fiberglass, so I can’t mount too much to it.
  • Is crowdfunding/sponsorship a viable option?
  • Where do I find some damn turn signal lenses that aren’t 100 bucks a piece?!
  • At what point do I stop thinking about it and just start driving?

I’m very confident in my construction/woodworking ability, but I’m sure I will have questions about electrical and plumbing when I get there.

Do you guys have any questions for me?

Cheers,

Nate


#2

Greetings & Welcome!

My 1973 hightop with 318 engine gets 15/18 mpg.

It’s a shame you gutted it, was it beyond repair?

Can she make it to the West Coast (I live in NC), also - how much would that trip cost?

That depends on road worthiness, gas mileage, and gas prices. I just did 1900 miles from Miami to Minneapolis with mine, $375 in gas.

Which solar panels are right for me? The top is fiberglass, so I can’t mount too much to it.

Why solar panels? Other options are better and cheaper.

Is crowdfunding/sponsorship a viable option?

Why not pay your own way like everybody else?

Where do I find some damn turn signal lenses that aren’t 100 bucks a piece?!

Try these guys for your parking lights: http://car-part.com/ $15

At what point do I stop thinking about it and just start driving?

When it’s roadworthy, livable, you have your income figured out, and a large enough emergency fund to replace/repair everything plus 6 months worth of living expenses.

Cheers!


"I can live like a king because I work like a dog." ~ An anonymous vandweller



#3

The interior was mostly gutted when I got it. All that was left was shag carpet and half of a dinette. I did keep the shower/toilet area though.

I’d like to get solar panels to charge the batteries. I guess I haven’t considered alternatives.

I’m at a point now where I live in an apartment and I’m not saving any money up where I work so I’m in a catch 22 where It’d be cheaper to live in my van but I need money to make the van livable.

Thanks for the info! I’ll Check them out

-Nate


#4

Greetings!

The good news is that sometimes you can really get a get a good deal on ones that have been stripped. My hightop was stripped too, but I got a great running van for only $800. I restored the original floor and walls from a wrecking yard, then just moved my new interior in and secured it. I think the total cost, move in ready came in at around $1200, including the van, and all the amenities.

Check and see if your converter is still there. If it is, with a house battery you should have power. Those were originally set up to charge while driving, via shore power, and some even had a built in generator. Just charging while driving gives me all the power I need 99% of the time. For the other 1% I have a $99 generator, and a $29 battery charger, that runs off the generator or shore power. No solar needed or wanted.

If you delete all the stupid choices, which just happen to also be all the expensive choices, you can still have everything but on a MUCH smaller budget. Winter’s coming on, check your roof and around all your doors and windows to make sure you don’t have any leaks, and if you do, fix them ASAP.

Spend all your free time building an income online. Then you’ll have the money to finish your project, and the money to support your travels. Keep your current job at least long enough to complete your build, build up a good sized emergency fund, and be making more than you currently are with your new online business.

Christmas tree season is approaching quickly, some people make big bucks selling Christmas trees, not on your own, for somebody else. Maybe before or after your current job, and weekends.

Cheers!


"I can live like a king because I work like a dog." ~ An anonymous vandweller