< <


The Sprinter layout worked very well so Transit will be the same.


The refrigerator selected is a Vitrifrigo 3.2 cu. ft. Model # C85IBD4-F. This refrigerator operates on 12 volt DC or 120 volt AC. It does not require propane. It automatically switches to 120 volt AC power when it is available. The refrigerator has the compressor mounted at the bottom back of the refrigerator. This location increases the size of the freezing compartment and reduces the refrigerator capacity at the bottom back which is hard to access anyway. The refrigerator has a correct edge of door latch. The Sprinter had a Dometic CR-1080 U/F which was a 3 cu. ft. refrigerator. The Dometic had a much smaller freezer compartment because the compressor was mounted at the upper back of the refrigerator. The Dometic had two door shelves compared to the Vitrifrigo's three door shelves. The Dometic also had a center latch which never latched the door properly. Dometic ran well and proved to be about the right size. Believe the Vitrifrigo will be an improvement being a bit larger, a larger freezer compartment, an additional door shelf and a proper door edge mounted latch. I do two things to increase the refrigerators efficiency. I add 1 1/2" of rigid insulation around 4 sides of the refrigerator. I have a 4" square hole in the van floor behind the refrigerator so air comes in the floor hole, passes the refrigerator coil and exits the open roof vent.


The stove is a propane Camp Chef Ranger II. Stove has two 17,000 BTU burners and is portable. Can be used on top of sink cabinet, outside on the drop down sink shelf out the slider door or on a campground picnic table. The counter space in a conversion is important. Do not want to waste counter space with a built in stove. We need the counter space to prepare food and as much as possible do not want to cook in the van. The sink counter location does help exhaust the steam and smells out the open slider door. The Camp Chef is larger than many propane stoves so a storage location at the base of the sink cabinet was included in the cabinet design. The Camp Chef can be run from a 5 lb. propane bottle or from backup 1 lb. propane cannisters. I originally had a Coleman Fold-an-Go two burner stove with 10,000 BTU burners. Found it difficult a couple of times to boil water. The 17,000 burners on the Camp Chef do not have that problem.


Purchased the same Dometic Model 972-Grey portable toilet that we had in the Sprinter. This model is designed so it can be latched to the floor. The attachment hardware is Part # 385320005. The toilet is installed on a pedestal so the seat hight is correct. It does not have to be moved to be used. We do not use it often but definitly want it available. My wife does use it more often than I do. My primary solution is a Quik chocolate container with a large lid. That is much easier to use and empty than the portable toilet. A little Clorox in the container controls the smells. Your local hardware store fertilizer/pesticide aisle has some well designed containers for the purpose. The pedestal to raise the Model 972 to the correct height doubles as the shower water tank. That space was wasted in the Sprinter installation. Sprinter had a 5 gallon beer keg modified to heat the shower water. Pedistal water tank eliminated the keg storage problem.


The Transit has a 1000 watt pure sine inverter powered by the Transit 12 volt system. That inverter can provide 120 volt AC "shore power" with the engine running. This "shore power" is used for three purposes: Available to power 1) the charger; 2) the shower water heater; or 3) a 750 watt electric baseboard heater. The electric heater is a Broan Model 124 heater with a Broan Model 86W thermostat. The heater has two 750 watt heating coils. One was disconnected to limit the wattage to 750 so it can be powered by the 1000 watt inverter.


In the Sprinter I modified a 5 gallon SS beer keg to heat shower water. There are several companies that make kits for the standard RV propane water heaters to make it possible to heat water electrically when in a RV park instead of using propane. I used a "Lightning Rod" 10 gallon kit. These kits consist of a electric cartridge heating element that screws into the drain plug and a thermostat to control the water temperature. So I added a coupling to the bottom of the keg and attached the thermostat to the keg bottom. Dropped in a small 1 1/2" dia. submersible 12 volt DC pump to get the water out of the tank. Pump discharged into a garden hose with a garden on/off spray nozzle. Worked very well. Got 5 gallons of 90 degree water after 45 minutes of driving. Sprinter had a 6 gallon 480 watt cartridge and the Transit has a 10 gallon 625 watt cartidge. Transit supplies 6 gallons of 90 degree water in 30 minutes with engine running. Instead of a portable beer keg, the Transit shower water tank is fixed tank under the portable toilet and is also the support pedestal for the toilet.


The black 600 watt microwave is a Westinghouse .6 cu. ft. mdel # WCM660B. Mirowave is the old fashioned style with two mechanical knobs to select the heat level and the time. No pushbuttons or clock. Does not draw any power when it is not being used. The power consumption is 950 watts so it will run on a 1000 watt inverter.


We let the van interior get cold at night and stay warm with a 12 volt heating pad under the sleeping bag. Since the refrigerator runs less in a cold van power is saved. The power required by the heating pad is about the same amount that is saved by the refrigerator. The heating pad is a 36" x 60" made by ElectroWarmth. It draws 6.2 amps when running. It has 7 heat positions and I have never used it higher than setting # 2. It cycles on/off so on the low positions it is off more than on. Use the remote start in Transit to warm van interior in the morning without getting out of bed.

© Dave Orton 2015   © Dave Orton 2016   © Dave Orton 2017      All Rights Reserved