van life with Matt Hodel

Church Van Upgrades

The Van Build 2022

The Van Build started in May 0f 2022. It was built for my duaghter Emma's 9 week road trip.

This was a down and dirty build. I know some van builds are nicer than your house but this van is built to live out of, not live in.  It is made to explore!

Emma and Noah took this van to California, Oregon, Arizona, Nevada, New Mexico and Colorado.  Pretty cool trip for only being 19. The entire process, from the build to planning the trip to actually navigating the trip was a milestone in Emma's life.

Every life has an event that changes who we are and the trajectory of our life's path. This Van Build was more than an adventure. It was a coming to age and a moment to reflect on who she was.

Can you relate?

The whole family pitched in to get this build finished in 30 days. Truly an amazing time for us.


Fun Fact: The entire Church Van was built for $5000. The most expensive part was the Solar and the Battery Generator. 

van life with Matt Hodel

Updating the Church Van.

Getting the Church Van ready for Texas.

Next week I leave for Texas. I am going to tattoo with my Friend Matt Vancura. He recently bought the famous Randy Adams Tattoo Shop in Fort Worth.  Side note, this will be my first time working in a street shop in over a decade. Hopefully I still have my walk-in legs!

The original Van build was just a starting point.  It was considered Stage One.  Now I'm getting into Stage Two.  Stage Two is getting it more suited for the cold.

The problem is the van isn't set up for the cold.  I use an electric blanket for those chilly camping nights but at 28F, its a bit much.  I'll be living in the Van for 10 days so I want to block off those windows. Emma made window covers and they look great! Unfortunately, they don't do much for the cold.

I didn't get to pretty. I just cut out sections of half inch foam board to fit snuggly in the windows.  I'm only concerned with the window that wrap around the bed, all the rear windows.  This didn't take long.

Next I built some more shelves for the rear. Something to stuff clothes into and also double up as a night stand.  I used materials laying around the garage.  I am not trying to spend top dollar on this project.

I would love another week of working on this project but ya gotta Run what ya Brung!

I'm always up to something!

Printing riso prints, off roading, hiking, model painting, illustrating, bushwhacking, podcasting, youtubing, photography, building an adventure trailer, overlanding and of course tattooing.

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