Vlog 19: Swiss Cheese

In this video I show how I screwed the sink into place on the worktop, using the supplied fixings, demonstrate a silly design flaw in my inverter, and go into further detail about the Propex heater installation, looking at the exhaust and air inlet pipe routing through the floor of the van. This involved drilling holes in the van floor – a nervewracking experience.

That’s because whereas most of the other holes have been drilled into clearly plain metal (for example, the holes for the windows or the roof vent), underneath the van is a mass of pipes, structural elements, spare tyre and so on, none of which want to be drilled into. Trying to measure from inside to match up with what was on the underneath was difficult as there was no fixed point of reference.

For example, the bumper edge slopes in so whereas a measurement might be “x” cm from the bumper at the top, it’ll be something else measured from the bottom and that makes for an awkward bit of measuring when you’re lying under the van trying to determine if the hole you want to drill is going to come out where you want it to.

Eventually I worked out that the two holes for the heater’s air inlet and exhaust must be come through at a particular spot simply because they were at one corner of the van and I remembered how the van floor had looked when I put the flooring in, so I knew the recessed bit of metal underneath was in a particular place.

Drilling a small pilot hole to start with, just in case, it all worked out perfectly, and I enlarged the holes to be big enough for the vent pipes. One small issue was not drilling the first one perfectly vertically so when I pushed the vent tube into it, the top of the vent wouldn’t like flat on the floor because the whole thing was angled over slightly, like the Leaning Tower of Pisa. Nothing that a bit of sealant won’t sort.

The inverter issue (it’s a Victron Phoenix 12/375) is that the UK plug socket faces down towards the mounting plate – but as the wires come out of UK plugs downwards, this means they’re too close to the plate so you have to raise the inverter up on stilts (blocks of wood) to give to wire a clear enough space to wind round. It makes more sense when you see it in the video.

Products and tools used in my van build (affiliate links)
Heater unit: https://geni.us/Van_PropexHS2000
Fridge: https://geni.us/Van_CoolFreezeCDF26
Portable toilet: https://geni.us/Van_Toilet
Sink / hob: https://geni.us/Van_SinkHob
Inverter: https://geni.us/Van_Inverter
Mains charger: https://geni.us/Van_MainsCharger
Solar charger: https://geni.us/Van_SolarMPPT
DeWalt jigsaw: https://geni.us/Van_DeWaltJigsaw
DeWalt drill: https://geni.us/Van_DeWaltDrill
DeWalt mitre saw: https://geni.us/Van_DeWaltMitreSaw
DeWalt circular saw: https://geni.us/Van_DeWaltCircSaw

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If you enjoyed this video and fancy buying me a cuppa, you’re very welcome to pop along to www.paypal.me/CruisingTheCut with many thanks indeed (and of course, no pressure should you not wish to!)


  1. Jim Brouillette

    For someone that portrays themselves as a “Numsey” you do very good work! My only concern is that your exhaust pipe and fresh air intake pipe exit very close together and I question if the intake pipe won’t suck in some of the exhaust. Other than that it’s a great job!!! Thanks for taking us along om the journey.

    • Haha, “numpty” I think is the word you’re looking for. The shot as seen in the video is not the finished, tied-up pipework. The Propex installation instructions state the pipes must be at least 0.5m away from each other and pointing away from each other, which mine complies with. Cheers

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