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Old 04-30-2010, 05:21 PM   #1
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Default MY FORD AEROSTAR VAN BED, ETC. PROJECT

Well the other day i got out the thick plywood and 2x 4 's and measured and made a bed frame pattern , luckily me and my wife are short , i am 5 and half feet tall she is 5'1 . i made the bed about 2 or 3 inches longer than my feet , i am also putting in those flat type curtan rods top and bottom for the windows , i am going to use small self tapping metal screws to go into the body (short ones) . when i get the rest of the lumber 2 x 4 's i will take some pictures and post them on a website , and show the nmeasurements, etc. of course this is a bed made to fit us , although people could use the layout to make theirs !
i am glad so far about how its starting to turn out.
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Old 05-04-2010, 12:33 AM   #2
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Default Re: MY FORD AEROSTAR VAN BED, ETC. PROJECT

That's great - you keep it up. Keep in mind the weight of your construction. You don't want to overload your van. 1/2 inch ply on edge is really strong.
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Old 05-16-2010, 06:53 PM   #3
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Default Re: MY FORD AEROSTAR VAN BED, ETC. PROJECT

Ok , finally here is some pictures of the finished bed , i made the frame out of 2x4's cut to size the bed is about 5 foot 5 inches long (luckily i am short (5 foot 5 , and my wife is 5 foot one ) i used i think 1/2/ or 3/4 inch plywood for the top of the bed although i did cut it in a 3/4 size because i put hinges and made it so i can lift back the botton edge of the bed to place things easily under it or take them out ! which you can see in the picture where i have it lifted up.
their is many pics of different angles of the curtains , we bought the black material for 2 dollars a yard at wal mart , cost us about 8 dollars all together .
we also bought regular curtain rods , the one on the drovers side rear window and the sliding window behind the drivers seat i joined two rods into one , although the curtians for the two windows open seperatly .
Their is also a picture of outr ice chest and portable toilet that we can use . on the sliding side door i drilled a self tapping screw into the door fram where it closes ok and just ran a strong wire from each screw and my wife hand sewed a area so all the curtains would go on the rods and on this wire .
We tested it at night with the van interior light on and between the already factory tinted windows and these black curtains you can't see anything in the van when curtains are shut !
on may 20th is our anniversary and we will be heading up to illinoise in it , so we will be testing it out !!
the bed is comfortable , we have lounge chair cushions about three each side under the fitted sheet that will keep them in place , this will be way better than the lounge chairs we slept in before in the van and they would tip up with you when you sat on the end of them .
As far as the weight although the bed frame etc. is a little heavy those two "bench " van seats i took out are plenty heavy all by their selves , it's hard to beleive how heavy they are !!

anyway here is the link to my skydrive account and you can see the folder named "FORD AEROSTAR CAMPER VAN BUILD "
The project turned out really well and when we go somehwre we won't have to shell out 45 or 50 dollars a night for a motel .
I still have some plans on making a small cabinet at the end of the bed against the wall to have a sink on the right and maybe customize our cooler and turn it sideways into a cabinet and make it and icebox refrigerator with some shelves !
i have drawn out the plans already , when i get that done (it won't be for a while yet ) i will post pics of it to !
A VERY SPECIAL THANKS GOES OUT TO MY WIFE FOR HELPING ON THE BUILDING (helping to hold stuff while i worked on it)AND SEWING CURTAINS !


for pictures of my project go to this link .
http://cid-237e6542a0fe663d.skydrive.li ... LD?lc=1033
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Old 05-16-2010, 10:30 PM   #4
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Default Re: MY FORD AEROSTAR VAN BED, ETC. PROJECT

Thanks for sharing your photos.

Your bed looks comfortable and well built. You got lots of storage under it also. Your wife did a great job on the curtains.
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Old 05-17-2010, 01:46 AM   #5
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Default Re: MY FORD AEROSTAR VAN BED, ETC. PROJECT

Looks decent, dude! Comfortable looking, and nice privacy curtains.
Just don't get the ice chest and porta-potty confused late at night in the dark!
Wonder if the roof would support the weight of a flat screen LCD or LED TV? You might be
able to figure a way to mount an articulating wall mount hung from the roof or maybe
even just hang a TV on the back of the driver's seat like they do now in commercial airliners.
Now, the antenna system would be a challenge, but there might be a way. Perhaps a small
Winegard directional, roof mounted, or some sort of fixed mount Batwing style antenna?
Or, there might be a laptop/internet TV option, like some folks on here prefer.
Anyway, it looks pretty good, so far!
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Old 05-17-2010, 02:51 AM   #6
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Default Re: MY FORD AEROSTAR VAN BED, ETC. PROJECT

thanks , yeah the bad cut zig zag look on the curtains edge was my fault i did that part , i need to trim the edges to make it look better !
I was glad we could do it , i looked about everywhere on the internet and didn't see where anyone had done this for a ford areostar van , so guess i had to be the first lol !
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Old 05-17-2010, 02:06 PM   #7
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Default Re: MY FORD AEROSTAR VAN BED, ETC. PROJECT

Oh beleive me i would love to add a tv etc in this van but i probably won't because i am just setting it up for the basics , the bed is fixed so i can take out the bolts off the legs and take the bed frame out and store it in my shed , and porta pottie and ice chest , this van is definatly a multipurpose van , the reason we originally have the seats out is because i place a tarp in the back and we haul off grass clippings in garbage bags and limbs from tree's every so often then i clean it out !
someday i hope to get a full size v6 ford econoline 150 van just for traveling places (even if its not far away ), i can still use the bed i have made to put in it , then i will add in a power converter and extra battery etc.
i still hope to make the little cabinet at the end of the bed i made and have a sink, and place for the ice chest sitting upright in the cabinet like a refrigerator , when i do i'll post pics again of how it turned out !
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Old 05-21-2010, 04:36 PM   #8
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Default Re: MY FORD AEROSTAR VAN BED, ETC. PROJECT

Well me and my wife just back from a trip up to illinoise to celebrate our 10th anniversary we spent 2 and 1/2 days , the verdict on the home made bed i made , great !! It was very comfortable , as comfortable as our bed at home , as the weather changed on the second day to rain , it got a little colder at night , we left the window cracked for a little fresh air , but we did just fine we had 3 quilts on the bed !
we stayed in a wal mart parking lot , only trouble we had was as we had parked farther down away from the store , we unfortunatly found out that the local bunches of teenagers etc. made that area their play ground , racing up and down the parking lot, loud thumping music, four wheel drive trucks , a mustang etc. squeeling their tires , for 3 hours so we finally moved closer to the store away from them all as was able to sleep better .
actually the new place was even better as it let the store parking lot lights gave us inside light so we didn't have to turn on our dome light to see, the black curtains we made and used worked like a charm to keep anyone from seeing in as we changed clothes, etc.
Best of all with the two nights of our stealth van to sleep in it already paid for all the materials for the bed and curtains in this trip alone !
i plan on drawing up the measurments sometime for the sink and making an upright coller holder, also on this trip i thought i may make a one side head board type cabinet that will fit along the side of the bed , since our bed is actually not real wide , this would give us some places to put a few things to .
Since the van has a little more extra weight i ran the van in regular drive and it did just fine !
now after getting everything unpacked we are ready to take it easy and rest a bit!!!
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Old 05-22-2010, 12:21 AM   #9
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Default Re: MY FORD AEROSTAR VAN BED, ETC. PROJECT

Sounds like it's off to a good start, the new stealth-mobile!

Walmarts are a pretty good late night, short notice dry camping stopover.
I think most of them don't care too much if you spend the night or just get a
couple of hours of downtime. Most people need supplies at some point,
and Walmart has just about everything you need, so spend some money
there, if you can, to pay for your "campsite". The down side with any public
place for an overnight stop, is the "neighbours". We've been buzzed at least
once, on just about every trip we've taken. The best way to deal with it is
to move, like you did.

Keep us posted on how your future conversion plans are progressing.
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