Work/live in van combo

Hi all.

New to the forum, but not new to van life. I have bitten the bullet and bought myself a MWB Hi roof sprinter with the idea of converting it into my home away from home, but also my work van. Im looking to expand my horizons by offering horticulture/gardening courses around the country (UK) as well as running my existing gardening company. Does anybody have any suggestions as to how I can use my my van for both, other than my idea of just keeping a folding bed frame in the back and having built in kitchen area and storage.


Hi roof is tall enough to have elevating bed platform.

It could be manual, like this one:

Or motorized:

(okay, it is also technically manual in that video but it has a simple build that works as an example)

Also worth noting how that second one has a sliding platform underneath. Something like that might benefit you as to help loading/unloading work items, if you don’t need to crawl underneath. Obviously you would want something that lifts bed up to the roof so you’ll have more cargo space.

Found another one, this looks like a commercial product:


If any of your equipment is fuel powered, you either need to provide a sealed off, ventilated space for it, or get a trailer for it.

Fuel fumes are a very serious issue.


"Happiness only comes before money in the dictionary." ~ Smilin Sam

Oops, sorry about that, I’m new to this forum and pressed the wrong button to reply!!

As for fuel, we don’t very often use petrol driven machinery, we try to use hand tools only and if we do use petrol machines, it tends to be the customers own. Having said that,

Thank you!

I hadnt thought about an elevating bed, definitely a great idea as it wouldnt get in the way and would maximise cargo space whilst in work mode. I’ll have to speak to my father, he’s far more technically minded than me, I’m sure he’d be able get it sorted!!

Many thanks again!!

Stitches and Steel (UK company making van stuffI) has a nice concept:

That one uses marine pulleys and I think the bottom of the bed frame is sail fabric.



I’m not sure I’m grasping the advantages of this, please explain.


"Happiness only comes before money in the dictionary." ~ Smilin Sam

Bed can be lifted up to the ceiling 5 days a week, when gardening tools, plants and accessories are transported around. On weekends bed drops down for camping trips.


Oh, okay… My thoughts were along the lines of a full timer, and the need to clear it every night to lower the bed seemed impractical.


"Happiness only comes before money in the dictionary." ~ Smilin Sam

Thanks KLF. I really like the stitches and steel idea, definitely something to consider! Another question for you, I’m looking into roof ventilation and I’m unsure whether or not 2-3 wind powered vents such as the Flettner 2000 (sorry Im not allowed to add a link for some reason) would do the same job as a powered roof vent such as a fiamma or carbon king?

Do they work on convection coming from the rising hot air inside the van as well as the outside wind power, or do they just work on wind power alone?

Many thanks in advance.

Sorry, I didn’t realise that king carbon was a UK company and probably not a world-wide supplier, but I’m sure you get the drift of my question! :+1:


I was pretty unimpressed by the Flettner 2000 specs below:


By comparison, my $20 Walmart fan moves 1,000 cubic feet per minute. I didn’t look up the specs for the powered vents you mentioned, but for the powered vents available in the USA, the cfm is similar to my fan.

I have a pretty big high top van, and my interior is 540 cubic feet. If I can move at least that much air per minute, I can keep my interior no hotter than the outside air.


"Never drive faster than your guardian angel can fly." ~ Unknown

As far as I know they only work on wind power, so they will move air only when vehicle is moving. Like the prodcut page says one target group is animal transport. Not for cooling, just to keep cows and pigs from suffocating.