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Modification of our car

The list of reconstruction works that lie behind us, can definitely be described as extensive.

"Get in and drive away", the G was praised by its previous owner. As the car was in a supposedly good condition, we were confident that we could set off to our world trip in a few months. But since soon after the purchase we experienced the first nasty surprises, we had to adjust quickly to the fact that we would probably not only kept busy with building some new pieces of furniture, but that the car required a complete restoration instead.

Get in and drive away? Sounds like a bad joke...

The bulk of work on the list below was essential to ensure the roadworthiness of the car and to modify it into a suitable vehicle for a long trip. In its condition at the time of purchase, the G would not have brought us a long way off. On the other hand, some work had become necessary only because of the tackled restoration of the vehicle - for example, after the removal of rust and the treatment with corrosion protection, it resembled more a rag rug than a proud off-road vehicle, which is why it also received a new varnish.

For more than two years, we have spent almost every weekend with the rehabilitation and the modification of our G into a travel vehicle. We would have liked to hit the road much earlier, but the car always had new challenges ready for us, which we had to overcome first. In hindsight, it feels as our adventure with the G had already begun long before we had driven the first kilometers in a foreign country. An experience, that we definitely do not want to miss. We have learned our lessons and have grown with the tasks.

The list of work performed

Inside and outside:

  • Rust removal
  • Welding in new sheet metal
  • Preserving the body

Inside:

Outside:

Technical adjustments:

  • Conversion from small to large wheel bearings
  • Repair of the 4-wheel drive
  • New track and steering rod
  • Brakes bleeding
  • Replacement of air and oil filters
  • Renewal of various hoses, seal rings, rubber bearings, etc.
  • Refilling of various oils

Articles

Everything must go!

Everything must go!

A big clean up was on the agenda. Getting rid of the old interior was liberating, but what surfaced was less pleasant.

We see red - fighting the rust

Fighting the rust

Rust - our new best enemy caused us a lot of headache and sleepless nights, but we met the challenge.

All the glamor is gone

All the glamor is gone

After a couple of weeks of removing the rust inside and outside, the car looked pitiful. We had no other choice than a new varnish.

From door to door

From door to door

We can just guess how many times the car's doors had been opened and closed in the course of its more than 30 years of existence. But it was obvious, that they would require a reconditioning.

Cutting and glueing - insulation and paneling

Insulation and Paneling

The necessity of insulating the roof and the walls was beyond all question. The insulation material applied on the walls is hidden behind our self-made paneling.

Sleep well - our slatted frame

Sleep well - our slatted frame

Like in seventh heaven we sleep on our self-made slatted frame.

Above all - a new roof lining

Above all - the new roof lining

After removing the original roof lining, we decided to not reassemble it. Instead, we designed and built our own ceiling that is tailored to our requirements.

All good things come from above - a new roof hatch

A new roof hatch

As a preventative measure we replaced the old roof hatch. Nothing worse than a leaking window or one that doesn't open reliably.

A tale of two seats

A tale of two seats

The mission seemed easy, but the execution failed: interchanging driver's and assistant driver's seat.

Shade and shelter - the awning

The Awning

The mounting of an awning was unquestionable to us. On sunny days, we escape into its shade; on rainy days, we hide there from the wet.

A solid basis - the floor plate

The floor plate

A 12 cm thick plate of durable and resistant phenolic plywood serves as floor at the "living area" of our car.

Keep me warm - the installation of the air heater

The installation of the air heater

The upcoming installation of the air heater worried us a bit. Wrongly, as we soon found out. The process was smooth and easier than initially thought.

Straight from scratch -  planning the furniture

Planning the furniture

The moment we bought the car, we started planning in our minds how the interior should look like. Bringing the plans to paper was then much more difficult.

3-in-1 bench, bed and storage space

The multifunctional bench

The construction of the bench was challenging. Aim was that it consists of a pull-out slatted frame to use as bed and in addition, the bench should provide some storage space.

A piece of furniture for water and electricity

Electric box and water shelf

Two elements that typically do not fit together, are unified in one piece of furniture. The cupboard accomodates both, water canisters, as well as various electrical stuff.

Big enough - the cupboard

The cupboard

The main cupboard should provide a lot of storage space. At the same time, it shouldn't be a monstrosity that causes claustrophobia when being inside the car.

Let us cook!

Let us cook!

The cupboard for food and kitchenware was the last piece of furniture we manufactured. Also, the space on the inside of the rear door had been used for a small hanging box.

On the top of the G

On the top of the G

The remaining area around the centered roof hatch has been used meaningfully with the installation of boxes and solar panels.

Let there be light - additional outside headlights

Additional outside headlights

We can claim to have sufficient light sources (both mobile and installed) indoor, but the outside of our vehicle required an update.

Sweep it under the carpet

The carpet

Of all the different materials that we have utilized in the course of remodeling the car, one has proved to be particularly useful.

Outside of the G - Jerry can and outdoor sockets

Outside of the G

In the course of rebuilding the car, also on its outside some alterations had been made.

Come drive with me - the cockpit

The cockpit

When traveling, the cockpit is inevitable the place where most of the time of a day is spent. In case of our vehicle, the cockpit wasn't a comfort zone.

A baby bathtub, but no baby on board?

The baby bathtub

In the course of rebuilding the car, we also transformed an initially useless compartment into a unique asset. Nickname included.

The black pipe- our water tank

The black water pipe

The obvious black pipe, which runs from the front to the rear of our adventure mobile, causes a lot of questions from outside observers.

Mission: Sewing

Mission: Sewing

Sewing the textiles for our adventuremobile was a welcomed alternative to all the grinding, hammering and screwing.

A perfect spot for the traction boards

Traction boards holder

Where to put them? The first question we asked ourselves after we had decided to take a pair of traction boards with us.

A new tail for easy entry and exit

A new tail

The genesis of the device on the rear of the vehicle is a typical "one thing leads to another" story. Initally, there was just the wish to get in and out easily.

Troublemaker pop-up top

Troublemaker pop-up top

Of all things in and on our vehicle, the pop-up roof strained our nerves the most. We lost sleep over it. In the course of the modification of the car, we left no stone unturned to mitigate the situation a bit.

More than just a piece of fabric - Shower curtain and awning

Shower curtain and awning

What does a shower curtain and an awning have in common? Normally not too much. In our case, our awning is also our shower curtain and vice versa.

Panta Rhei - Everything flows!

Panta Rhei - Everything flows!

Our vehicle has two water sources. Neither of them is inside the vehicle.

Picture gallery

Initial status

Initial status

The G's inital appearance was far from how it looks today.

The great clean-up: everything must go!

The great clean-up: everything must go!

Decluttering the inside of the car turned out to be quite time consuming.

Fighting the rust

Fighting the rust

It's nothing unusual to spot some rust in a car built in 1984. But in our G the corrosion had raged and caused a lot of damage.

Time to shine in new splendor

Time to shine in new splendor

After the first round of reconditioning works, the car was in dire need of a new varnish.

Reconditioning the car doors

Reconditioning the car doors

The reconditioning of the car doors was part of the restoration work conducted.

Insulation and Paneling

Insulation and Paneling

The roof and the walls have been insulated with Armaflex. Where the insulation material was applied on the wall, it got covered with a paneling.

Our slatted frame

Our slatted frame

The slatted frame has been manufactured by us according to spatial and individual requirements. It can be lifted up to gain some headroom.

The new roof lining

The new roof lining

Creativity had no limit when constructing the new roof lining. It is made of wood, consists of three parts and is entirely clothed with carpet.

Installing the roof hatch

Installing the roof hatch

Like many other things on and in the car, also the window in the roof had past its prime and needed to be renewed.

The car seats

The car seats

Who has spent several hours in a car knows very well how important it is for the driver and co-driver to sit comfortably.

Our Gordigear Gumtree awning

Our Gordigear Gumtree awning

The awning is quickly setup, and provides valuable shade and shelter from the elements.

The floor plate

The floor plate

We have dealt with the floor plate in several rounds. First, it was fitted in, second we cut out the openings for the fuel gauge sending unit and the compartment in the floor. Last but not least, we placed the drive-in nuts.

Installation of the air heater

Installation of the air heater

The installation of the Planar 2D Diesel Air Heater turned out to be less difficult than initally feared.

Planning of the interior

Planning of the interior

Our approach when planning the furniture? Drafting, discussing, trying, drafting again, discussing again and trying again.

The extendible bench

The extendible bench

The seating surface of our bench can be pulled out to serve as bed. Slats ensure a pieceful night without a back-ache the next morning.

The main cupboard

The main cupboard

With twelve spacious boxes that function like drawers, the largest among all cupboards offers a lot of storage space. Special feature are the three incorporated table tops.

Electric box and water shelf

Electric box and water shelf

The cupboard in front of the right back-door is divided between shelves that carry water canisters and a box that accommodates the cabin battery, solar controller and fuse box.

Pieces of furniture in our kitchen

Pieces of furniture in our kitchen

After most furnitures had been built in, the remaining space was efficiently used for two pieces of kitchen furniture.

The cockpit

The cockpit

The Cockpit was in a miserable condition: a dashboard like Swiss cheese, an absent grid and some colorful switches.

Special Feature: baby bathtub

Special Feature: baby bathtub

What to do with a compartment in the floor that is at the same time too small to use as storage space, but too spacious to ignore entirely? We enlarged it, what made it resembling a bathtub for babies.

The black water pipe

The black water pipe

Our water supply with canisters is complemented with a black pipe that serves as water tank.

Sewing

Sewing

On the sewing machine, ready, go! Most of the textiles in the car were sewed by us.

Traction boards carrier

Traction boards carrier

The mounting for the traction boards is more than it seems. The checker plate to which the boards are affixed to, can be folded down to serve as table or shelf.

Easy entry device

Easy entry device

The gadget at the rear of the car is an unique device to enable an easy entry and exit.

Additional headlights

Additional headlights

The outdoor lightning of our automobile required some improvement.

Troublemaker pop-up roof

Troublemaker pop-up roof

The pop-up top of the car worried us a lot. First, it was very heavy, what made it difficult to open and dangerous to close. Second, its fabric was not waterproof.

Shower curtain and awning

Shower curtain and awning

A multifunctional piece of fabric that can be used either as a protection from sun/rain, or as a shower curtain to protect from prying eyes.

Application of decals

Application of decals

After two years of restoration and modification, our automobile finally received some decals with the G-Trotter logo.