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My second T4, operation de-chav

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  • #16
    That's a brilliant thread, a lot of detail backed up with photos. You can fully appreciate the work that has gone in up to now.


    • #17
      Originally posted by kaz View Post
      Great work love the colour
      I had my doubts when I saw it in the tin - but I love it as well.

      Originally posted by StitchMyRide View Post
      Mate I'd pay you to do my roof in black!!
      It's not too bad a job to do, I found the prospect a bit daunting but once I formulated a plan and cracked on with it - it went fine.

      Originally posted by Dave T View Post
      That's a brilliant thread, a lot of detail backed up with photos. You can fully appreciate the work that has gone in up to now.
      Cheers! All my own work - done on the drive as it wont fit into the garage.

      Wet sanding

      Any really bad areas can be worked on with 1000 grit but it’s better to start with 1500 as the 1000 may do more damage than good.
      Using a bucket of clean soapy water and keeping the paper wet and clean, you rub down the very top layer of lacquer.
      I use a cork block or a stiff rubber pad to hold the paper, and work in straight lines to get rid of the orange peel and leave a uniform level surface. It’s very tricky to tell if you’ve gone far enough because the water forms a shiny layer on the panel and it all looks fine, Once the panel dries again you may see shiny circles that are low spots in the orange peel and you need to go over it again – what you are looking for is a dull uniform finish.
      Repeat the process using a 2000 grit and then you can use a compound and polisher to restore the shine.

      Wet sanded and polished the first of many panels, got a decent unrippled reflection going on

      wet sanding. I've done one side, bonnet and wing and door on the other side -

      about 4 hours work just to get it vaguely flat this far, still have to finish and then go over the whole lot again with 1500 grit and then 2000 before it's ready for the G3.

      hours and hour and hours of sanding.

      I've pushed myself to try and get it done, I've not really wanted to but I've done the 1000, the 1500 and I'm halfway round on the 2000

      washing the van at every stage means I'm pretty damn bored of washing it as well

      Still - nearly there now - burnt through in a couple of places on the rear doors and I'm not happy with the bonnet, faintest shadow of the stripes and a few stone chips and two fisheyes - I have a thing about bonnets, they have to be spot-on as it's the one panel that draws the eye the most I think. So the rear doors will see a few patches blown back in and the bonnet will get a few more coats.

      This is the matt look after 2000 grit stage and a wash down

      I removed the runs using the filler technique which I was dubious about but it worked really well however it's left a shadow - ever seen this effect?

      The photo doesn't show it very well, it's quite obvious.

      more wet sanding happened, then it was time to get out the G3.

      I have a set of ebay cheap compound foams, which were a bit pants, so I bought a fast mover set containing a soft waffle and a firm foam and a velcro backing pad

      The firm pad was far better than the stuff I had before and worked well and stayed intact.
      I used up the remains of my G3 paste and then switched to some G3 liquid which I found much easier to use than the paste, with a bit of guidance from a mate I used the following method.
      G3 on the foam and on the panel, bit of water and a slow speed to begin with, working it in. Then tweak the speed up and work the compound about with regular water added, keep moving it about and allow the paste residue to dry out and start to buff to a shine. Swap to the waffle, no paste just the odd spray of water and buff to remove the paste residue off the panel.

      Seemed to work for me, I'd really recommend the final rub down with 2000grit instead of trying to G3 after 1500 grit.

      It's not looking too shabby

      Remember that peely panel? Reflections are a whole lot better now,

      Needs a good clean up and then a proper waxing

      (even months later I’ve not given it a good clean up and a proper waxing – maybe when we get a fine day and I have 4 hours to waste)

      It may only be a small panel but it was an important one, finally got the front of my van looking how it should

      I'm very chuffed with how it the paint has turned out - cheap spray job, probably owes me £200 tops in paint and materials

      Slammed the van into the weeds, quite literally
      Last edited by regcheeseman; 25th February 2016, 06:04 PM.


      • #18
        Its hard to believe its the same van! Looking good!


        • #19
          I dread to think the hours that have gone into that!! But looking at her in the sun it was well worth it!! I hope your pleased with it!! When are you putting those lovely stripes back on it? [emoji23]

          Sent from my iPhone using Just T4s mobile app


          • #20
            Hours? yeah one or two - Apparently "far more hours on that sodding van than you spend working on the house"

            Stripes....yeah, they well make a reappearance....

            Next up, getting rid of the last of the chav touches - Too big rims, they've got to go, max power was just soo nineties!


            Was thinking that I might not to run the monoblocks I bought months ago, then spotted some different wheels for sale and the seller was after some monoblocks - so we arranged a swap.
            Booked the collection with Paisley freight monday evening, they picked up Tuesday and delivered Wednesday

            As I'm not sure if they need to be orange, gloss black or silver I put one up against the van

            Still don't know, was surprised how much bigger the 17/55 was in comparison to the 18/45s I have fitted
            My red neck whitewalls

            A serious clean with some scotch pad and a wipe with panel wipe and a dusting of etch primer

            The wheel centres were badly oxidised so I attacked them with the wire wheel on a bench grinder and then filled them to remove the pock marks from the corrosion, this had the added advantage of obscuring the audi four rings emblem (nearly)

            Got a decent coat of jet black base, needs a bit of a flat down and another coat of base before I clear it.

            Flatted the wheels down a bit and fitted the centres in with rhino seal, then gave them a second coat of base

            Clear going on

            And finished

            Yes I know audi wheels are done to death - because they look good; nice clean simple lines.

            I'm thinking a set of mk1 gti stripes along the sides might set it all off nice
            Whilst I'm on about stickers, you may have spotted these


            • #21

              Built this cubby hole

              Fitted the extra battery in

              Not a proper leisure battery but it was the right price i.e. free so it will do for now....

              My lovely wife took the kids to the theatre tonight, so I could do some more woodwork, more of the framework first, the cross braces for shelves and starting to work on the framework for the storage section behind the drivers seat.
              Then I started to cut some ply to make the shelves

              More ply shelves cut and started to line the base of the cupboards with some black vinyl flooring left over from my delica build, then I ran out of glue, marked up some more ply but it was gone 10 and too late for the circular saw so I gave up - this is how it stands at the end of play

              More panel work cut out, my first go at kerfing - cutting slits almost through the wood to form a curve

              Pouring on boiling water is supposed to help...

              And fixed in place

              Tonight I've been making up some curtains, I knew what material I wanted weeks ago and found a duvet set that could be cut up to provide the material and bought a couple of sets.

              So far I've made the curtains for the front screen and the front doors.

              the cooker shelf fits in fine, ran out of time to tig it up so it'll have to wait until after the family holiday.

              We made it all the way to Land's end, here's the proof - well nearly land's end, Sennen Cove.

              Had the minions onboard

              Back home again, and the snag list is a mile long, let the next round of mods commence...

              I was sent a link to an ad on ebay an ad on ebay
              Using this picture

              I've messaged the seller to advise them that they are using my van image and funnily enough the stripes on it are paint and not the vinyl they are trying to flog!
              Strangely enough, this is not the first time... a german seller used a picture of my caddy to advertise the swage line strips he was selling, but my caddy had vinyl stripes not proper trim!

              Having ground my way all the way out of Lamorna cove I decided to lose a bit off my exhaust turn down

              I've given up on trying to find a pair of polystyrene bumper inserts, so reverted back to plan b and expanding foam, first up I wrap the bumper irons with pallet wrap so the foam doesn't stick to the metalwork,

              only to discover the plastic bumper outer wont fit onto the metalwork whilst it's still attached to the van, thus begins an epic 30 minute battle with the 4 bumper iron bolts that initially moved easy but refused to wind out because of the rust on the threads.
              I pushed the bumper into place last night and prayed that the expanding foam would stop expanding some time soon, thankfully it did, and this morning there were a couple of small growths on the underside of the bumper, they can be trimmed off and tidied up fairly easily. I'll have to trim of the excess pallet wrap as well.

              I also found out that LRM removes uncured expanding foam from paintwork with no damage to the paintwork at all.

              Quite happy with how my home made foglights turned out

              A bit of plastic cut from a striplight diffuser and dusted lightly with a satin black aerosol


              • #22
                Nearly up to date now and to celebrate 12 months of ownership my van decided to throw a bit of a wobbly

                what started as a slightly ominous noise rapidly got worse and turned into a fairly serious misfire.

                I decided to take the van off the road, do the belts, re-time the belts and finish a few other jobs - I've had a new plastic radiator surround stashed in the loft for a while, likewise the two bumper support brackets which had been hacked off by Stevie Wonder when he fitted the bodykit.

                Another job required was to fit the pipes to connect the under bumper front mount intercooler to the rest of the engine, I had some silicone bends and some ally pipework stashed in preparation.

                The biggest problem and the reason I'd probably avoided this job so far was the lack of access and the tight route for the pipe between alternator and the front panel.

                Not an ideal solution but I decided to flatten the pipe a bit to gain the necessary clearance

                Anyone aware of something on another vehicle that might solve the problem of running boost pipe through a narrow gap without compromising the flow too much? Failing that, I need to try and fabricate a part to suit.

                I've been trying to avoid doing it until it was absolutely necessary, but it was making trying to eye things up near impossible, so with a jubilee clamp fitted as a cutting guide I chopped the original turbo to inlet manifold link pipe in half.

                With the 90 degree silicone fitting fitted to the other end of the intercooler and the link pipe back in the manifold upside down (thus keeping the temp sensor) I could cut the pipework to join the two

                And test fitted in place

                I don't do shiny, those aluminium pipes were too much and I found some old scraps of real genuine carbon look bullshizzle

                Got the pipework fitted last night and spent this evening routing the coolant hoses away from the intercooler, moving the loom around to reach the relocated air temp sensor and replaced all the vac/boost lines.

                Refilled the coolant and fired up the van.

                Took a while to start, I've not cured that issue which may be down to the notoriously poor standyne injectors.

                Settled down to a clean quieter idle.

                Let some heat get in and blipped the throttle - it would seem that Rolf Harris and his didgeridoo have been exorcised - by the simple action of timing the pump up somewhere closer to correct.

                Bit more heat in the engine and blip it some more, waa hey! It's revving much quicker and harder than it ever did before; time for a test spin.

                It wasn't bad before, having a noticeable step in the power round about 2500 when it would take off nicely - in fact it was so good I suspected that it had been remapped in the past.

                However, it's all changed now, the step in the power is gone, it's there literally right off idle instead and the power is up right through the rev range. The combined effects of fitting the intercooler and timing the pump up has made a massive difference.

                Well happy.

                Intercooler all plumbed up, bi of a kawasaki fan so had to do the green pipework, just couldn't bring myself to do it for the intercooler silicone pipe as well

                The drop down between alt and front cross member

                And on the other side a much easier route

                The actual intercooler is hung from brackets on the cross member, and the under tray modified to allow airflow through the cooler

                From the front, the caddy van grille keeps it all factory looking

                With the engine warmed up I plugged in vagcom and measured the timing, could see an option for the AJT so stuck with the default 1Z graph which put the midpoint at 60 when I believe it should be 55 for my van. At idle the timing was jumping around, not sure if that is normal but at least it was jumping around the 55 mark, it seems to be running very well so I'll leave it at that.

                Family crimbo shopping weekend, up to Bristol and Bath.

                Decided to take the van, was a little apprehensive as I've not done many miles since fitting the belts and they have all been sedate around town driving.

                I was quite amazed to find the added stomp at motorway speeds and well beyond Obviously the extra airflow across the cooler helped a lot. Not much came past me on the motorway

                An added bonus was that with the new wheels fitted the speedo now reads spot on at sat nav verified 70, when it used to say 79 at 70.


                Been a while waiting for one to turn up, but finally got hold of a broken UPS at work, took a while to get a 12v one rather than the more common 24v ones.

                So what do I need an old UPS for?

                An UPS uses a battery supply to deliver a 240v supply - an inverter.
                An UPS also charges a battery when there is a 240v supply present - a leisure battery charger on hook-up.

                With a bit of modification, I'll have 240v from the leisure battery and a hook up in the van that will recharge the battery - probably never use it but nice to have all the same

                Once it had been scrapped by so called technicians I commandeered it and made it work again.

                Once it had been fixed and deemed suitable for my needs I broke it again

                Chopped down the original front panel

                just so I could extract the original switches and led status indicator panel with alarm.

                Then cut a few holes out with a dremel to allow me to fit a few new pieces

                Most of the re-wiring done, a new switch and voltage meter fitted to isolate the leisure battery and monitor its condition.

                Time to test it

                Seems to work, I hadn't t reckoned on the alarm sounding every ten seconds or so when no mains is present so I quickly de-soldered the alarm sounder.

                See that section I cut out of the UPS case? It was where the original battery was housed. I had no reason for cutting it out apart from the fact it was wasted space and space is a premium in a camper van.

                However it transpired that having that strange cut out was actually a fantastic idea, I could pretend I actually planned and designed this but I'll be honest, it was a complete fluke.

                I originally was going to mount the unit against the side of the cupboards, but when I come to eye the job up I found a much better alternative.

                It needs to go somewhere in the back of the van ideally

                So I removed that shelf and was amazed that the unit would fit in under the shelf and behind the amps in previously unused and wasted space, just need to chop it about a bit.

                a quick test fit, some M5 rivnuts fitted to the UPS case to allow the unit to bolt up to the underside of the shelf

                And working

                Now to refit the leisure battery and carry on with the rest of the interior...
                Last edited by regcheeseman; 29th February 2016, 01:22 AM.


                • #23
                  And so to bring you (nearly) up to date, some woodwork...

                  I was never happy with the fridge cupboard, the runners were too cheap and the construction was quick and shoddy, knocked together to have something usable for summer camping trips I now need to try make something a bit better hopefully.

                  The rest of the installed furniture needs finishing as well, there's no work surfaces.

                  So starting on the cupboard, I bought some decent quality push to release undermounting ball bearing sliders from Solmer actually I bought two sets, dunno what happened with the set I bought, I needed some that were nearest to 390mm max and for some reason bought some that were 250mm long??? I've bought another set at 350mm.

                  Started work on the shelf, the old design was a bit wobbly because there were no sides, it needed some triangulation to make it more rigid.

                  Screwed and glued the sides on and mounted the sliders.

                  I've started to cut out the work surfaces including a couple of stainless cup holder from ebay


                  • #24
                    I have wood for you.

                    With the work surfaces cut out, a special friend set to with his router, rounded the edges and cut a rebate in the large hole

                    I then cut out a ply lid to fit on top, the ply is warpy and horrible so this may change, the plan is to also use this lid as a table, had a similar setup in my old van and it worked well.

                    Test fitting the work surface, turned out a touch too long and too wide so was shaved down.

                    The bit at the front of the stainless 'work area' with the manky bit of black silicone needs some further attention to add in the rolled edge, I have done this, took an ages to get right.

                    I know it looks like I've taken the front off the sink but it's the cooker shelf, I'm not having a sink as I cannot be doing all that faff with fresh water tanks, pump and a drain/waste tank - just chuck a washing up bowl in the van if needed and buy a bottle of water from tesco - at least the coffee doesn't have that plasticky water tank taste.
                    A decent cooker is important to me, a grill is nice idea but they can be slow, besides I didn't find a nice looking grill/hob combo - so the three-burner setup will go back in here. I welded up and re-dressed the original edges where the box was folded up

                    I've been having a problem with wind.

                    Wind noise, like a window is partly open, I had put it down to either the roofrack or a small section of missing door seal, where the seal is too short.

                    However whilst working on the interior I noticed daylight coming in the window - between the frame and the aperture. I taped it up and drove about for a couple of weeks until we got a half decent day.

                    The window came out easy enough

                    Revealing a small patch of rust which was dealt with before cleaning up the rest of the aperture and refitting the glass

                    I removed the peeling scratched limo black tint and added a 'this way up you fool' arrow I made sure that I didn't make the same mistake as the other side.

                    Talking of foolish mistakes... what's that saying?

                    Measure twice.....

                    Cut Thrice?

                    To be fair MK1 (right) was cut fine, but when eyed up to the carcase I realised it would work better with a slightly different design, MK2 (middle, with 3 hinge rebates) was fine but a bit warped and didn't sit well.

                    Mk 3 is all good - see those three cut outs? Bit Of Damn Good Engineering right there; the control knobs on the cooker sit a bit proud and the holes locate over them - this has the clever feature that you cannot shut the door and leave a ring on by accident - genius huh!

                    Note the new roundy edge bit spliced into the front of the cupboard unit with loads of screws - dont worry, merely work in progress, it'll be fine in the end
                    Last edited by regcheeseman; 2nd March 2016, 02:25 PM.


                    • #25
                      After a load of fiddling and trimming and cutting and tweaking and fussing and messing and generally twatting about I've got the drop down flap for the cooker in a position to go for a test fitting; the fridge drawer can be clipped back onto the runners to see how the pair work together.

                      The door and drawer fitted and closed up.

                      Cooker flap dropped down also gives me a small shelf for working on

                      Fridge drawer slides open easy on latching push to open ball bearing slides

                      Yes it's rough as badgers, but just you wait.....still needs a bit of trimming to fit properly and then it needs finishing properly.


                      • #26
                        I an sure that if you put as much effort into the finish as you have the rest it will look the business. all the best.


                        • #27
                          Awesome thread!


                          • #28
                            Originally posted by Dave T View Post
                            I an sure that if you put as much effort into the finish as you have the rest it will look the business. all the best.
                            Hope so, I've the skills to put things together at a fairly decent standard of finish, but I do lack some flair on the design side, it'll be 'safe' rather than 'wow', I did consider stickbombing or bright colours but fear it might then end up 'naff'

                            Originally posted by Dangermouse View Post
                            Awesome thread!
                            Cheers, here's some more....

                            Had to pick up a fridge freezer on Sunday which meant the bed had to be lifted out, which now means I have to crack on and get the bits of trimming finished so I can get the rear seat back in again.

                            I started on the trimming last night, took over an hour just to do the rear section and it's still not finished

                            Yes it does look a bit 'sea of anthracite' at the moment, it's much better in the flesh

                            Hopefully the new carpet should turn up today, that's been in my watch list on ebay for at least 12 months, I decided I had to buy it, went onto ebay and chose something different instead.


                            • #29
                              So, nice tidy trimming all finished - what's next?

                              Skip duties.

                              A tip run, one broken 'merican fridge/freezer (never buy Samsung fridges) off/mis cuts of ply from the van build and a load of scrap metal

                              And on the run back from the tip, why not pick up 600Kg of concrete mix to lay the base for my new kayak store 8D

                              I fitted the cupboard drawers back in early as a pre-paint test fit and was absolutely overjoyed, where there was previously a rough edge and what looked like too much panel gap between various components is now a perfect snug fit due to the added trim carpet and it all sits in there fantastic.

                              No pictures yet as I want to get some paint on and fit the bits properly


                              • #30
                                trimming is lush

                                Happy with that, look how tidy the fridge door sits, took another set of slides and a new drawer to get right but it's now faptastic.

                                Yeah the cooker covers the black bit I can't be arsed to clean up properly

                                Not so happy with the wet patch in the corner of the van

                                God knows where this is coming from ???