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Thread: The Long Reach Adventure Van

  1. #1
    Joe Time! expeditionnw's Avatar
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    The Long Reach Adventure Van

    The last few years, we've been spiraling into the dark web of addiction. It took a big event to jolt our consciousness that something was wrong. Cold, hungry, dirty, and living out of our car on an Alaskan back road, we knew we had to make a change.

    We just HAD to have more room to enjoy our uhh, traveling....


    Having traveled Quite alot in an old Volkswagen van within the US, there is no denying the advantages of the open floor plan, turning radius, and driving ease of a van.

    The shortcomings are equally obvious however. The most glaring being its total ineptitude offroad.

    We have long fantasized about a high clearance adventure van for years. Our way of life, and the type of travel we did just never aligned with the dream. It was mostly about the terrain imitations of such a vehicle that kept us away.(well, the vw, mostly just left us stuck there )


    Our needs now dictate a vehicle that can sustain us long term. 30 days to a year. Its not realistic to continue cooking in the rain, or jamming all our stuff and selves in a small vehicle for long trips. Need room for activities!


    Ive noticing most of the trips we've done recently can be done in a fullsize vehicle. It was this same moment we realized- We are finally ready for a 4x4 adventure van




    Last edited by expeditionnw; 07-13-2016 at 11:03 AM. Reason: Guess its not Unit 6 anymore...

  2. #2
    Web Wheeler dropzone's Avatar
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    Sweet!
    I take it that this will,be a diesel with 80+ gallons of go juice and 60 gallon H20,supply.
    Doing the conversion to 4WD yourself or picking up something like a sportsmobile conversion?
    Pop top or High fixed roof?
    I am sure you have a totally cool plan for the inside layout

    Departure and approach angles look good on this
    Last edited by dropzone; 01-15-2016 at 11:10 AM.
    robb

    1994 4Runner - Work In Progress aka: project Recycle


    Wheel Responsibly

  3. #3
    Drives like Grampa cjsrebiff's Avatar
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    Biff - short for Bifford aka - Byph
    There is no best vehicle. It depends on the terrain, tires, driver, luck, and lots of happenstance.
    84 Wagoneer 'Trail Tank' - 35 SSRs, 8274, Detroits, FrankinLift and soft leather.
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    barefootrunnerd:
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  4. #4
    Web Wheeler dropzone's Avatar
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    That would be a nice base
    Only a 5k winch?
    robb

    1994 4Runner - Work In Progress aka: project Recycle


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  5. #5
    Joe Time! expeditionnw's Avatar
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    So what are my requirements for the vehicle?

    In order of priority:

    Reliable. (1990s-present)

    Comfortable for long term travel (big bed, inside kitchen, open feel)

    Capable ( rough forest service roads, washouts, snowed in passes, etc)

    Economical /good range (16mpg is acceptable. most likely diesel is the only way to get this)


    Ive been surfing the classifieds, just casually looking at prices. These vans are NOT cheap. $50k for a used sportsmobile.

    Im not in love with the interiors on sports mobiles, would rather build it my way.

    Diesel vans are even harder to find, near impossible with 4x4. Ive found a few 4x4 Quigley conversions, turbo diesel for around $20k. Not bad considering a 2wd diesel sells for 10k, and a gas 4x4 sells for 12-20k.

    And then... i found Unit6. A once esteemed vehicle, now long forgotten in a blackberry patch. Unit6 is a 1992 4x4 Quigley converted, 7.3 diesel E350. Once an ambulance in rural Virginia, It was driven to washington and parked since 2004 with 116,000 original miles. Coil sprung front, leaf spring rear suspension, Hi pinion dana 60 front, dana 70 rear. unknown ratio.


    I had to have the magnificent beast.





    Sadly, the years of neglect have taken its toll. There isnt much life left in the body.



    While the interior was in fantastic shape, at some point the window was broken out and destroyed most of it.





    But Its got a diesel 4x4 chassis

    And it will live again!
    Last edited by expeditionnw; 01-15-2016 at 11:29 AM.

  6. #6
    Trail Leader Loud Al's Avatar
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    I'm looking forward to how this turns out.
    2001 4Runner Grocery getter

  7. #7
    Web Wheeler dropzone's Avatar
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    Is the rear frame really rusted through?


    Cutting off the top and using another donor body and put the drive train on it?

    Knowing you this will be on the trail in 90 days.
    robb

    1994 4Runner - Work In Progress aka: project Recycle


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  8. #8
    mike Weiler's Avatar
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    Nice unit....
    Just kidding!!!
    What a junker!!!
    Temporary for sure
    '07 fj cruiser on 37s

  9. #9
    Trail Leader AEV_LJ's Avatar
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    Wow, this is going to be an interesting build to see! Is that frame actually rusted through? I imagine the price was right and it seems like a great starting point.
    ~Rodney
    '05 LJ Rubicon. 3.75" suspension + 1.25" body lift with Currie adjustable links tuned to fit 35" MTRs.

  10. #10
    Senior Member
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    Sweet! My father in law has a '90 E250 16 passenger Pathfinder conversion with a diesel. I'm trying to talk him into building it into an expedition rig out of it.

    Sent from my SM-G900V using Tapatalk

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