After Bigfoot 21' - Fiberglass RV

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Old 06-29-2014, 12:13 PM   #1
Senior Member
Name: George
Trailer: Waiting for the Sprinter van and designing the converion modules.
Posts: 629
After Bigfoot 21'

Hello, being a reasonably active member of this forum in the past I decided to give you an update of my RV vehicle endeavor.

We sold our 21’ Bigfoot in 2012 heading towards something smaller like a Van camper or a small trailer.

After looking at the market we decided to do a DIY conversion on the short wheel base, high roof Mercedes Sprinter and in February of 2013 we picked up a new passenger Sprinter- 2500, 144” wheel base. The actual conversion took about one year and it is about 95% completed.

Our objective was to build a van with similar + functionalities of our 1977 and 1985 VW Westfalias. Good for 2 people, windows all around and lasting quality.

I decided to use aluminum extrusions (80/20) for all cabinets framing filled with panels from the marine grade HDPE (High density polyethylene). Practically all extrusions were machined in the 8020 factory and most of HDPE panels were CNCed. Most of the components including wiring were marine grade.

There is no LPG on board, everything is either electrically or diesel powered. The main remaining items to do are adding diesel water heater (Espar D5), floor and replacing one window with MB style matching RV one.

DIY projects are never ending but we got to point of being ready for the first trip.

We were very close to get a small fiberglass trailer with a small towing vehicle but decided to go with the Sprinter, for us this was a very good decision.

Here is the spec:

Basic equipment:
o Seating for 5
o Sleeping 2 (54” x 76” bed) + 1 child (passenger seat rotated and ottoman)
o Swivel driver and passenger seat
o Passenger seat in the swivel position can use toilet/ottoman combo called by the Sprinter forum friend - The Pottoman.
o Single burner alcohol/electric stove by Origo
o Diesel Espar heater 0.85/1.2/1/8/2.2 kW
o 4 Gal 750W/(Diesel to be installed) Isotemp water heater
o Transom shower
o 3 CF Danfoss pump refrigerator
o 650W Microwave oven
o Awning

o 2x115 amphr AGM batteries
o 30 A 120 V electrical shore inlet
o 1000W Sine Wave Inverter/charger 50ADC Magnum MMS
o 120VAC outlets
o 300W solar panels
o MPPT Morningstar 45 charge controller
o MaxxAir fan with remote
o Blue Sea system CBs control panel
o 2 GPM Water pump
o 12VDC and USB outlet
o Magnum electrical monitor
o Morningstar solar monitor
o Fresh and grey water tank level Wema monitor
o All lights are warm white LEDs

o 12 gal fresh water tank. Fresh water fill is by connected water house under pressure electrically controlled
o 14 gal grey water tank
o 4 gal hot water tank
o 4 gal Thetford 402C flush water tank
o 5 gal Thetford black water tank

Here is the link with picture:

Here is the link to my thread on the Sprinter forum: Layout plan. - Sprinter-Forum



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Old 06-29-2014, 01:22 PM   #2
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Name: Roy
Trailer: 1972 boler American and 1979 Trillium 4500
Posts: 4,852
Excellent work George!

Now before anybody says anything about it not being molded fiberglass, there are a lot of ideas we can take and apply to our FGRV's. The cabinet work is to die for.

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Old 06-29-2014, 01:33 PM   #3
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Name: kootenai girl
Trailer: 2005 Casita Spirit 17
British Columbia
Posts: 1,260
I love it, wonderful job. I can certainly see the appeal of one of those.
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Old 06-30-2014, 05:50 AM   #4
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cpaharley2008's Avatar
Name: jim
Trailer: 2016 2ndGen Escape19 Prairie Schooner pulled by 2014 Dodge Ram Hemi Sport
Posts: 6,242
Wow, very impressive George.
Never in doubt, often wrong
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Old 06-30-2014, 05:57 AM   #5
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Name: Wayne
Trailer: Nest fan, Airstream owner
Posts: 2,000
Very nice George. Lots of work for sure.
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Old 06-30-2014, 06:24 AM   #6
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Name: Carl
Trailer: 1994 Scamp 16
Posts: 240
I am impressed with your workmanship! That is one very nice camper!!!!! To purchase that RV would cost a fortune! I know you really enjoy your new camper!! Have FUN!
Please keep us informed on your travels? Thanks!
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Old 07-13-2014, 10:37 AM   #7
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Name: George
Trailer: Waiting for the Sprinter van and designing the converion modules.
Posts: 629
Recently I changed insurance coverage from the passenger van to RV and run some cost analysis of my conversion. Total cost ended up to be around $66K. The closest commercial conversion would be from the Sportsmobile Company around $80K. The big difference is no LPG in my conversion, all appliances are either diesel or electrically powered. All other RV vehicles based on Sprinters don’t enough windows for our taste except the SafariCondo from Canada.

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