Saturday Snippets: 04.November.2017

Welcome to the first weekend in November! I’m shivering in Edmonton at a work course, but the bonus is I get to catch up with one of my besties afterwards, which makes the cold weather totally doable ๐Ÿ™‚

Here’s what caught our eye online in the world of climbing, eating, cycling and repeating. Saturday Snippets for 04.November.2017.

On Climbing, Eating, Cycling and Repeating:

On Moby News (aka Sprinter van conversion):


  • Last month, we ordered more Thinsulate insulation for the two back doors and the two front doors (drivers + passenger). With the weather starting to turn, we wanted to get the remaining areas insulated. The Thinsulate we use is for automotive use, and is really easy to work with. It’s flexible, easy to cut and glue into place, is fire-resistant and doesn’t off-gas, making it ideal for van conversions.
  • We could immediately notice a difference with the doors insulated. They close with a very satisfying โ€œclunkโ€, and the night we spent in the van a few days ago was noticeably warmer. There was no draft, and Jonty didn’t even need to wear a hat, like he thought he might!
  • Jonty finished designing and CNC-ing the panels for the two back doors. Our initial plan is to hang our bouldering pads off the back doors, but if this ever changes, these blank-slate walls will be the perfect place to hang hooks or rails or storage bins. | Sprinter van conversion - door insulation

More sewing:

  • Last week I said I was done with the sewing, but I lied ๐Ÿ™‚ We wanted a curtain hung at the back, to help minimize any drafts from the garage area below. I really love the pop of colour in this curtain! It’s actually two curtains pulled together, so we can slide them easily to the sides if we need to access the bed from the back of the van. | Sprinter van conversion - sewing curtains | Sprinter van conversion - sewing curtains

Potty situation:

  • We covered the loo seat / ottoman last week! It looks great at the moment, and we’re interested to see how it holds up over time. I chose not to glue the sides of the vinyl to the box, just staple. So if the vinyl starts to sag too much, we can always take out the staples and tighten it. | Sprinter van conversion - covered ottoman

Happy Weekend!

Saturday Snippet: 28.October.2017

The weather has been wonderful this week, which was in stark contrast to last week! We took a day off yesterday and cycled around all the new murals from the Vancouver Mural Festival. It was a full day, and we covered a lot of ground on the bikes. With the sun shining, it was the perfect start to the weekend.

Here’s what caught our eye online in the world of climbing, eating, cycling and repeating. Saturday Snippets for 28.October.2017.

On Climbing, Eating, Cycling and Repeating:

On Moby News (aka Sprinter van conversion):

This week has been a busy one, and we’ve been chipping away at some of the little jobs. I don’t have a tonne of pictures for you this week (I’m scrambling to get this ready for posting today!), but here are a few of the updates from the week.

  • Curtains are all finally finished finally! I think ๐Ÿ™‚ Magnets have been sewn into all appropriate places, and I’ve made new tie-backs, which are now sewn onto the curtains themselves. No more dropping them! I’ve also sewn a curtain for under the sink. It will act as a door until we decide if we actually want a door there or not. I’m thinking the curtain will stick around for the long-haul. | Sprinter van conversion - curtains

  • The ottoman for covering the loo seat has been made and I’m in the process of covering it. We’ve glued a piece of 2-inch high-density foam onto a box base, and we’ll cover the entire piece in the same foam-backed vinyl we used for the walls and ceiling. | Sprinter conversion ottoman seat

  • We’ve finally boxed in the electrical box! It definitely makes the area look more finished. | Sprinter van conversion - electrical box

  • Jonty has started working on the plumbing for the toilet and shower area. No pictures yet, but the process has started!
  • The drawers have been finished and Osmo’d and work really well. We already know that the main large drawer is going to be our most functional space in the entire kitchen!

We also spent one night in the van (on Thursday). We’ve found a few creaks in the bed frame, maybe due to the cold? So we’ll have to figure out where those are coming from. It’s probably just the bed starting to settle, and we’re assuming that tightening some of the bolts and re-seating the wood slats will solve the problem.

Regardless, we woke up early and drove over to Queen Elizabeth Park, to catch the sunrise. What a wonderful way to start the morning – toast, coffee and the warm glow of the start of a new day ๐Ÿ™‚ | Vancouver BC - sunrise at Queen Elizabeth Park | Vancouver BC - sunrise at Queen Elizabeth Park | Vancouver BC - sunrise at Queen Elizabeth Park | Vancouver BC - sunrise at Queen Elizabeth Park

Happy Weekend!

Saturday Snippets: 21.October.2017

The rain has officially returned to the lower mainland, and it’s returned with a vengeance! The deluge has been pretty non-stop since Wednesday, and is supposed to continue through the weekend (although we did see a break on Friday night, with the beautiful view seen above). I’m glad we ended up doing some under-van work last weekend, while it was still dry!

Here’s what caught our eye online in the world of climbing, eating, cycling and repeating. Saturday Snippets for 21.October.2017.

On Climbing, Eating, Cycling and Repeating:

  • Not just dirtbags – the positive economic impact of climbing. I agree with a lot of this!
  • I love a good slice of banana bread. The kind that’s perfectly moist, but not full of oil, and often sprinkled with nuts or seeds or coconut flakes!
  • 9 seasonal foods to fuel all your autumn activities. I don’t think I’ve ever tried celery root… Perhaps it’s time to start!
  • Have you heard of the Vancouver Binners’ Project? For those of you that don’t live in Vancouver (or lower mainland), we often call the people who go through the garbage bins, looking for cans and bottles to recycle โ€œBinnersโ€. It may sound like a poor term to use, but the Binners actually do the city a big favour, by removing all these bottles and cans from the garbage, that would otherwise end up in the landfill. For the second year, the Coffee Cup Revolution took place last week. The Binners were given 5 cents for every coffee cup (which also end up in landfills) picked out from the trash. They collected over 49,000 coffee cups in four hours!
  • I can see this being a problem for high school kids, but for university-aged students?

On Moby News (aka Sprinter van conversion):


  • We’ve finished our galley drawers, and we’re very pleased with how they turned out. | Sprinter van conversion - galley drawers

  • The big drawer, which is over the fridge, opens fully and has soft-close latches, like all our upper cabinets. This drawer will hold all our utensils, spices, dish cloths, and anything else that will fit into a 4-inch height. Jonty’s going to make some customizable compartments so we can separate everything as we see fit, with the flexibility of being able to change the layout as needed. | Sprinter van conversion - galley drawers

  • The drawer under the sink is a pull-down drawer. We bought the little trays from Home Depot, and it’s going to be the perfect place for sponges and scrubbers and dish soap. | Sprinter van conversion - galley drawers | Sprinter van conversion - galley drawers | Sprinter van conversion - galley drawers

Other bits and pieces:

  • We painted part of the water tank using something called Plasti Dip. It’s a rubber coating that has a variety of uses, but can be easily removed or peeled off when you don’t want it on anymore. We think it makes a huge difference! Our eye isn’t drawn to the big white tank anymore! | Sprinter van conversion - Plasti Dip the watertank

  • We also covered all the exposed water pipes with pipe lagging, in an attempt to winterize our water lines. We’re hoping this will keep our water hoses from freezing, in temperatures just below zero. So maybe for Vancouver winters, not real Canadian winters ๐Ÿ˜‰
  • Yesterday Jonty CNC’d the pieces to make our toilet / ottoman cover. Our plan is to use the toilet base as a chair / seat / ottoman when it’s not used for its other purpose. We glued it up and then I’m going to cover it!
  • I’m thiiis close to finishing all the curtains. Perhaps, by the time this goes live, they will be finished, and we can have pictures to show next week.

Happy Weekend!

Saturday Snippets: 14.October.2017

Almost without fail, the week following Thanksgiving brings with it a drastic change in West Coast weather. By this, I mean, the rains come. And, without fail, we’ve gotten our rain this week! The wet mornings have felt quite cool, and the local mountains have had their first dusting of snow. I’m really hoping the sun still makes an appearance every few days, as many of the trees are still sporting their greens, and I love seeing the changing colours… when it’s dry! ๐Ÿ™‚

Here’s what caught our eye online in the world of climbing, eating, cycling and repeating. Saturday Snippets for 14.October.2017.

On Climbing, Eating, Cycling and Repeating:

  • How to make climbing volumes. I feel like I can see Jonty’s side business here!
  • The secrets to cycling bliss. I’m on board!
  • I just finished reading The Miniaturist (a great suggestion ย from my mother-in-law) and After You (it was okay), and am on the hunt for my next read. I saw a link to this site – search for a book, time yourself reading a sample paragraph, then the website will estimate how long it should take you to read it in full! Perhaps I’ll have to try it with my next find.
  • If you’re looking for ways to cut your salt intake, without sacrificing flavour, here are a few good options. We regularly use all of them, except for the cheese. That is saved for our weekend treats ๐Ÿ™‚
  • I made a turkey roulade for Thanksgiving, and stuffed it with a spicy, herbed dressing. I’m definitely going to try making it again, with a few tweaks. This stuffed pork tenderloin is adding to my inspiration!
  • Doesn’t this look like the perfect Autumn cake for a chilly, rainy weekend afternoon snack? Mmmm, apples…

On Moby News (aka Sprinter van conversion:

This week, Jonty has been designing the sliding drawer for the kitchen (over the fridge), and it’s been a bit of a puzzle, trying to figure out how he’s going to make it all work. Lucky for him, he enjoys a good puzzle ๐Ÿ™‚

He was able to CNC it yesterday, and we made sure the puzzle pieces all fit together. Today we’re gluing it, then some stain and we’re good to install it!

We’re both looking forward to having a functional drawer, as we’ll be able to start leaving utensils and other pieces in the van all the time. | Sprinter van conversion - making sliding drawers

In the background, we’re still on toilet-duty, slowly getting our ducks in a row. I think we’re making a bit of progress, so hopefully some update photos for you next week ๐Ÿ™‚

Happy Weekend!

Saturday Snippets: 07.October.2017

Happy Canadian Thanksgiving long weekend! Do you have any plans? What’s your food menu looking like? The weather is supposed to be nice and sunny all weekend, and we’re looking forward to turkey (of some sort) and pie (apple-blackberry). We’re hoping to get another camping night in, so it’s my goal to bake at least some of our Thanksgiving dinner in the van. Crazy? Perhaps. But the thought of enjoying Thanksgiving dinner, while looking out over the ocean and enjoying a glass of wine doesn’t sound so bad ๐Ÿ˜‰

Here’s what caught our eye online in the world of climbing, eating, cycling and repeating. Saturday Snippets for 07.October.2017.

On Climbing, Eating, Cycling and Repeating:

On Moby News (aka Sprinter van conversion):

Let’s get this Potty Started!

  • Oh, you best believe I pulled out many of my greatest dance moves in the van, as we got our potty-building started ๐Ÿ™‚
  • Our Separett toilet arrived last weekend! We went shopping for a new loo seat (the blue styrofoam one it came with was not worthy of a Moby build) and Jonty got busy making the box frame and loo-seat cut-out. | Sprinter van conversion - composting toilet installation | Sprinter van conversion - composting toilet installation

Front curtains:

  • I finished sewing the front window privacy curtains this week, and we’re pretty happy with the way they turned out! I decided to sew three separate panels (two side windows, one front), with the thought that there could be times when we don’t want (or need) to have the entire cab covered up.
  • We’ve installed simple hooks into the headliner, and the curtains hang over the windows via the hooks. They’re easy to put up quickly, and they make the front feel so cozy! | Sprinter van conversion - front privacy curtains | Sprinter van conversion - front privacy curtains | Sprinter van conversion - front privacy curtains

Storage cupboard:

  • It was always our plan to have a vertical storage closet in the van, to store jackets and bulky clothes, as well as drawers for additional storage below. The location and size have changed as the van has evolved, but now that we know where the toilet is going, it was a simple decision for where the closet would be – right beside it!
  • We’ve CNC’d and stained the cabinet wall, and the curtain rod is in! | Sprinter van conversion - closet storage

Fan covers:

  • A quick little project I fired off this week was making removable covers for the fans. During our first trip away, we definitely noticed the amount of draft that was coming in through the fan above the bed. We will always keep one fan open during the night (to minimize condensation), but with the nights cooling off, we thought it might be a good idea to be able to cover the one at the back. Also, the fan lets in quite a bit of light in the morning, so this cover will also block out any unwanted sunlight.
  • We used the same foam-backed vinyl as we wrapped the walls and ceiling with, and I sewed on a little pull-tab. So these covers press perfectly into the fan opening, and can easily be pulled out via the tab. Neat, hey?

Next up:

  • We’ll probably be starting on some drawers next, specifically the one above the fridge.
  • We’re also in the process of getting a second alternator purchased (the company needs to make sure their alternator will work with our Mastervolt charge controller), and also trying to figure out our shower set-up!

Happy Thanksgiving weekend!