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One more step to completion of my camper

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    One more step to completion of my camper

    Just signed up with Total Shield insurance for the van now it's finished. Good price.

    I had to email them the photos of the conversion before they would go ahead with the policy - they have some fixed features the camper van must have. One is a 6 foot bed. No problem for me as the design was for that from the very beginning. However, they state that the table should attach to the floor or the van side wall. Mine attaches to the kitchen unit, which in turn attaches to the floor and wall.

    Anyway, good news. The van meets all their requirements. I think it helped by pointing them to my web blog which shows the complete conversion process.

    Next step.

    Photos and description have just been posted off to the DVLA to re-register the van as a "motor caravan"! A bit of an over-kill of a description, but that's what they call it!

    I know a lot of people on here convert their vans as stealth campers, but my plan was to build a recognised camper van from the beginning.

    My design criteria was

    1. A camper for me and possibly a friend (at a squash) that I could afford to run. I think 45mpg does that.
    2. Lower than 2m so I can park in most car parks. At 1.8m it does the job
    3. To be able to lay down and have a kip without turning the van inside out to do that. Well, the bench seat provides the 6 foot long snoozing bed.
    4. To be able to stop off and brew up a cuppa or cook simple meals come rain or shine. Double gas stove does that!

    So job done. Hope the DVLA agree. Fingers crossed.

    Send from an iPad so please excuse any typos!
    Last edited by steamydave; 27-05-2011, 16:31. Reason: typos!
    "If I have seen further, it is by standing on the shoulders of giants."

    :so happy::so happy: Well done to You Dave!!


      I think you've made a super job of your conversion so I would hope and assume the reclassification as a motorhome will proceed smoothly. It certainly looks like a motorhome to me!

      Mine is deliberately not a 'motorhome' and I intentionally kept it very basic and 'Heath-Robinson' with no gas installation, no means of fixing a table, no leisure battery etc so that it is still a 'van' in order to retain the business use insurance with 'carriage of goods in connection with the policyholder's business'.


        Thanks again.

        Sorry to keep on about it but I feel like I am now taking an exam after a years worth of practical and theory study.

        It's probably because it's my first full conversion.

        "If I have seen further, it is by standing on the shoulders of giants."


          You've made a fantastic conversion

          Re DVLA and change of body type, you probably know all this, but having just gone through the process myself recently I thought you might find my (and probably Anchorman's) experience helpful.

          Change of body type - this can only be done if the vehicle was wrongly registered at first registration.

          Take photos of the bed showing the length, if possible with your reg number plate showing, if you can't get both in, take two photos, 1 with the bed in, the
          2nd with reg number plate and bed as best you can.

          Take photos of the cooker in situ, showing that it is part of the motorhome, again showing number plate as per the bed.

          Take photos of front, rear and side of van, again include number plate where possible.

          Send photos to DVLA to support your application. The number plate on the photos is important, as the DVLA want proof that it is your van

          Ring DVLA to check on progress after a couple of weeks.

          If you find yourself repeatedly having to ring DVLA, the clerk dealing with your request may give you their name and direct line. This happened in our case, she was incredibly helpful, and things whizzed through from then on.

          Apologies if you knew all this! Hope everything goes through without any problem
          Last edited by VonUK; 28-05-2011, 09:29.



            Thanks for the info for the DLVA. I have sent about 10 photos, 2 of which include the number plate. With the lifting doors at the back, its tricky seeing the plate and the conversion at the same time.

            I visited the local office last year, and they gave me the check-list of things to do. This has been the base of all the planning from the beginning. Insurance companies have their own twist on the list, but most requirements fall into the DVLA list. In fact, the current insurers requirements are worded almost identically!

            This year, I found an email address for the DVLA, and they returned an email listing requirements. The list was much shorter than the original list, so I suspect that even the DVLA have different lists according to who you contact!

            The photos, modified V5, copies of invoices (think they require them to see what has been paid for in the conversion – insurance company didn’t need copies, but made sure I keep the invoices just in case I ever need to claim) and a 2 page description of the conversion (based on the email requirements + a list of other features of the conversion) went off in the post yesterday.

            I also sent them a link to my website blog of the conversion. Not sure how hi-tech the DVLA are, but I know the insurance guy had a quick look. I think it gives some sort of provenance to the conversion, showing stage-by-stage what happened.

            We shall see!
            "If I have seen further, it is by standing on the shoulders of giants."


              Wow Dave, With that lot it should be plain sailing! Good luck with it all, obviously I should have talked to you before I started my own request for change of registration!


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