ldv!

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Man Quits Job to Convert Old Van into Mobile Home to Travel the World

Like many others, Mike Hudson longed to exchange the monotony of work and everyday routines for a life filled with adventure and travel. He made that dream a reality in 2013, when he quit his job as a systems engineer, gave away most of his worldly possessions, and began the enormous project of converting a rundown, 10-year-old van into a home on wheels called Vandog.

The rust-covered LDV Convoy, which Hudson had bought on eBay, required five months of hard work before it was successfully turned into a cozy, self-sufficient camper equipped with everything a person could need. Sliding open the van doors reveals a comfortable, timber-lined interior fitted with an extendable bed, a large hammock, a work desk area, plenty of storage space, speakers, a fridge/freezer, a gas burner and sink, a shower and toilet, a pressurized water system with hot water on demand, and LED lighting that uses electricity generated from solar panels on top of the van. Gas, his main energy source, is stored in an LPG cylinder that can be refilled cheaply at petrol stations.

In March 2014, after completing his van, Hudson drove Vandog from his native Hull to the south of England, where he boarded a ferry and crossed the pond. Since then, he has traveled all over Europe, driving across countries like France, Spain, Portugal, Switzerland, and Austria. The 25-year-old traveler shows no signs of slowing down his whirlwind adventure, as he wishes to continue experiencing all that life has to offer from the comfort of his wonderful, mobile home.

To keep up with Hudson’s journey, check out his blog, Vandog Traveller.

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25/06/15

This is our finished van conversion project. It’s been 10 months in the making and now we’re finally ready to set off on the roadtrip of a lifetime around Europe.

When we got our van it was rusty, leaking and had a huge hole in the roof. It was nothing but bare metal and plastic. We removed the 17 minibus seats, started laying down a plywood floor and then the wooden frames that would build our home.

10 months later and we have running hot and cold water, heating, working electric, lights, and one hell of a sound system. It has by no means been easy- when we started we barely knew how to even use a drill. This project has taught us so much, and it’s been such an experience. You think it’s as easy as buying a van, putting a bed in and hanging a few bits of fabric to make it look nice but it’s so much more than that.

Now we have our home on wheels and we’re ready to begin our adventure and our new life on the road. It’s the ultimate feeling of freedom: anywhere we go is our home now.

In two weeks time we’ll be boarding the ferry to France- keep updated with our travels on this blog or our Instagram page.

Follow the hashtag #Fromrusttoroadtrip to follow our van conversion project and our travels around Europe! 🌍

“Because there was nowhere to go but everywhere, keep rolling under the stars…”

Jack Kerouac, On the Road


Jard-Sur-Mer, France.


Follow the hashtag #Fromrusttoroadtrip to follow our van conversion project and our travels around Europe! 🌍

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7/05/16

With all our busy work this week we found the time to take the van for a drive and have a little BBQ by the sea on the cliffs of Zennor as a reward.

We were treated to a beautiful sunset and I couldn’t resist getting my camera out to snap a few shots of the van, although it would’ve looked a lot nicer if it was sky blue not dirty white. Still, it was a perfect evening. The best part about living on the road is that everywhere you go is your home- watching the sunset from in bed out the back of your home with a blanket wrapped around you is an unbeatable feeling.

If there’s three things we’ve learned so far from driving a van it’d be these:

  1. 1) You have to take corners much much slower, or you could find all your stuff sliding across the floor and the van leaning over precariously on two wheels as you drive.
  2. 2) Everything rattles. A lot. The faster you drive, the louder the roar of tools and a shitty plastic dashboard becomes.
  3. 3) Vans get stuck in mud really easily. Especially at 2 in the morning in the middle of nowhere on the moorlands of Cornwall. Traction grips are a must, but we conveniently left ours behind and had to flag down a car of young girls to help us push the van out of the mud (we’re very sorry!).

It’s  straight back to work next week after our rare day off- we’re getting so close to being able to move in now.

- Ben & Lucy

Follow the hashtag #Fromrusttoroadtrip to follow our van conversion project and our travels around Europe! 🌍

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