This van project is turning out to be a learning experience. Okay, I have a decent amount of education (2 AAS degrees and a B.S. degree). They are in technology fields (electronics and computer technologies) but that doesn’t mean I have any common sense… LOL.
I learned a valuable lesson from Curtis Carper. Curtis has a website (http://www.stealthvandweller.com/ ) which is the gold standard when it comes to every phase of the vandwelling experience. He gives you great advice for buying, converting, and living in a cargo van as well as other life lessons. I have learned so much from this man. I really hope to meet him some day.
The most recent lesson I learned is about learning. I had planned to insulate my van in the same fashion as Curtis had. Feeling guilty for relying on another, I had set out to use his advice and change it to suit my needs. But in the process, I thought I knew everything and made a dumb mistake. I bought a combination of pieces of 1″ foam insulation as well as 1.5″ insulation. I had planned to put more insulation in the walls and thought Curtis had not used enough. Supposedly, I knew more than he did.
When I went to put the insulation in, it would not fit because it was too damned thick. I struggled and struggled and became really angry, ramming it into place and breaking it. Then I realized it was because of my own arrogance and that I had struck out on my own, didn’t even measure what I needed and assumed I knew everything. Part of me was upset for feeling dependent on others for their advice. Isn’t that silly? It was time to regroup.
I have started to insulate the walls using the 1″ insulation Curtis Carper recommended; it is easier to work with and fits great. Since the insulation sheets have pre-cut lines, I have snapped them into 24″ widths to make them easier to work with. Yes, this results in a few wasted scraps and seams but that is acceptable. As for the $30 worth of 1.5″ styrofoam sheets, I bought and didn’t use yet, this is not money wasted. I can stuff door panels with chunks of them as well as put pieces in other crevices or in the cradle I will use my CPAP machine. Nothing is lost but a little pride and that is a good thing. An importan lesson was learned. The person who knows everything before having ever done something is disillusioned.