Designing the Van Part 29 – Making Plans for Nigel

I don’t know who Nigel is but for the sake of conversation that’s what I’m going to call my cupboard in the overhead compartment. It means I can justify using such a silly title for this chapter which, well, I felt like doing.

Anyway, the leisure battery was sat in its home and the majority of the wires were run so now I needed to enclose it all and tidy the whole thing up. The overhead space is sizeable and has rounded corners at the top which meant the panel I made for it would have to be cut precisely.

I measured the absolute height and width then cut a sheet of 18mm MDF to that size, giving me a rectangle to chip away at. For the little intricacies I got some card and drew around them, making sure to measure the height at which they started and finished (which would mean my panel would line up when finished).

It took me a few hours to get everything sorted, not a quick job and certainly niggly. I decided to cut corners on the corners, as it were, so to speak in clichés and puns and things, and estimated them. I drew around a tin for the curve and got to jigsawing.

My panel was ready to try so I slotted it into place, had a little curse when the corners didn’t line up and cut some more off. This happened three times but luckily I wasn’t in a rush. I managed to squeeze it in eventually and the swearing stopped shortly after.

The next step was to cut one end off to make the access door and cut the hole out to make the currently complete panel into a frame. Easy meat.

I had another of the green doors from Reddy lined up for the cupboard and I’d measured it all in such a way that meant I’d have no extra cutting to do. Because I like things to be easy. Because I’m a bit lazy. To be honest.

Two sets of hinges, some strips of baffle and a handful of screws later I had a cupboard where there used to be only raw space. This was exciting, the interior was developing nicely now.

I removed the access door again and marked it for cutting and drilling. Having this in place meant I could install the regulator for the solar panel, the heater control for the Cascade II water heater and the carbon monoxide alarm, as well as switches for the water pump and the kitchen light. Yes, life was good and I was semi-electric.

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