Newbie from Berkeley, CA
Hello Fellow Wanderers!
I've been debating alternate dwellings for ten years, attending weekend seminars on how to build a tiny house, buying multiple books on cob building, and more recently just visiting campervan sales lots and having a look around. Man those things are expensive! The whole thrust of this adventure is to do things on the cheap and save money. That's when I found you guys! It never even occurred to me to build a skoolie, until I came across them on youtube last week.
I've nixed the idea of a tiny house, since I don't own a truck to tow it, or property (with an existing building) to place it. I've nixed the cob dwelling as well, until I have property somewhere hidden where they won't tear it down. A used RoadTrek was really attractive, until I saw the price tags. ($65,000 for used 10 yr old vans). So I'm pretty sure this is the solve for me. As an artist, I really wanted a hand in the design and build, so it seems like a good fit at this point in my life.
Some history - I grew up in western NY, bought a '78 Trans Am at 18 and drove across the country to San Diego, CA. Didn't know a soul. Eventually moved to LA, where I lived in an Airstream trailer for 3 years in Topanga Canyon (LOVED it), while I attended design school. I then moved up to the Bay Area where I am currently...slaving away at the 9-5 - trying to figure out how to get back on the road.
I'm in research mode now. I've already located bus mechanics and spoke with them about a pre-purchase inspection. I've yet to call my insurer (AAA) to make sure it's feasible. I've located the online auctions where they're sold and watched tons of online videos of tear-downs and builds. I'd almost like to just pay someone to 1. Take the seats out 2. Pull the walls off 3. Spray closed foam insulator 4. Lay the plywood floor and wall ribs, then take it from there - all the fun stuff. LOL.
Thanks so much for this site - what a great resource!! So thrilled this is here. Thanks in advance for any advice you all offer. I really appreciate it. I look forward to being a part of this wonderful community. Hope to see you all on the road, one day!
*ps - I'm aiming for a short bus.