Rethinking the Van Design Part 6 – Removing the Kitchen

 

As I said before, I’ve done this series slightly arse about face (like a Quentin Tarantino plot) so that I could get to the bulkhead removal part first and save a world full of unhappy Renault Master drivers from the tyranny of enforced bulkheadery.

My new open plan van required the removal of the original kitchen before I could get to the bulkhead so this is the story of how that happened and how horrified I was by my original rushed job.

My original installation was functional and worked well for us in the most part. The fridge was a pain as the door opened awkwardly and gave us little space to see what was in there so this was something that needed fixing. I’d intended to build a frame around the area and flesh it out with various panels, but in the end I just fixed the panels to each other and used brackets to hold it all in place.

This made my deconstruction job longer because if I’d thought to build the frame first I could simply have unscrewed it and moved it to the new spot. But no, I had to be Captain-Cut-Corners (thinking that once it was done it was staying for good).

 

Partway through the kitchen deconstruction. You can see how I basically stuck bits together. It was solid and worked though which was all we needed.

 

 

The new kitchen was going to be a complete refit and the only parts I intended to keep were the fridge, sink, taps, plumbing, work surface and drawers. The rest would be sold, recycled into other areas or discarded.

So, the process went as follows:

* Remove all doors and drawers.

* Take the fridge out and disconnect the wiring.

* Disconnect the gas and water plumbing.

* Remove sink , drainage tank and fresh water tank.

* Unscrew and remove all ‘side’ panels.

At this point all I had left in place were the work surface, a support strut and the two hefty L brackets holding it in place. The water heater was the last thing to remove as it required undoing on the outside of the van so I took the remaining kitchen bits out, stashed them and then had to find a way of plugging the hole left in the side of the van by the heater’s absence.

It took me a few hours to remove every screw and store the bits but in the end (and after the removal of the bulkhead as well) I was left with a good space, ripe for a well planned, well executed installation of a cosy living space.

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