Building and Installing Cabinets

First let me say that building square cabinets in a non square environment sucks.  What I mean is the van walls aren’t square, It flares from front to back and rolls in from bottom to top.  Every piece you make is one of a kind custom.  My brother is a custom cabinet maker / woodworker and this took him forever.  I would have been just as happy I think we a few small 1/4″ gaps with caulking but not the master carpenter.  No caulk here!  So after we set the garage up it was time to build forward with what we had left.  I knew the bed was going on the drivers side and that I wanted a sink and counter area for indoor cooking if I needed it and then to have the cabinet sweep forward and block half the door giving me more storage space.

My wife and I had a small pull behind for 3 years and learned that we are living out of these things not living in them so use all the space you can so that you can still manage inside and can spend some time in there if the weather is bad but don’t waste space thinking you’re going to throw a party inside…..it’s a van!

Back to the van.  Every board had to be made twice.  Once a template and then the real deal.  We were still using the foam core boards for as much as possible.  We would use it on the side except for the front where we needed to add real wood for hinges, drawer pulls, etc.

I laid out the pantry and was able to squeeze in a compartment behind it in the garage for backpacking gear…score! The clothes closet went in the corner just as planned.  The fridge and porta-poti cabinets went right in the middle.  I swapped the sink from one side to the other when I swapped around the water heater and pump keeping all that on one side and then put the inverter and electrical box on the other side.  When we stretched the cabinet forward across from the bed I ended up with more room than I thought I would and we put in a whole row of drawers which became our major clothes storage freeing up some overhead storage for more gadgets, toys, cameras etc.

UPDATE:
The Drawer and Cabinet Pulls were hard to figure out as we needed something to lock so everything didn’t fly out around a corner while driving.  I’ve been asked by a few people about where to find these so here is the link.

 

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