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March 13, 2019
As the nomadic lifestyle grows in popularity and the #VanLife and #TinyHouse movements take root, adventure vans are becoming more and more sought after by people like us. People interested in converting a van into a camper with plenty of gear storage and hitting the road. People who want fresh air, fresh scenery, fresh powder, and a wide open road.
When wanderlust takes the captain seat and you begin your van build journey, you’ll quickly run into a critical question. Do you go for the long, arduous approach of a DIY van conversion? Or do you select one of the growing number of van conversion companies (which can be pricey and involve wait lists) to do it for you? And then, you’ll need to weigh the cost of a van build, which elements are most important to you (e.g. pop-top roof, storage, sleeping area, kitchen unit) and which make and model you want to use.
New van outfitters are popping up all over the country, and we know there’s a lot to consider. That’s why we’ve hand selected the best camper van conversion companies to give you the head start you need to begin your research. For each one, we’ve listed their location, area of expertise, and cost estimates where possible. We hope this list is a step towards discovering the van build of your dreams. Happy researching!
Located right outside of Denver, TouRig specializes in custom van conversions for the Mercedes Sprinter vans and Metris minivans. They focus on creating “modular, versatile solutions to customize your vehicle for your needs.” And their established vendor partnerships ensure your rig will be outfitted with the highest quality campervan accessories money can buy.
Location: Golden, Colorado Specialty: Mercedes Sprinter & Mercedes Metris Cost: Contact for pricing
At home in the Pacific Northwest, Outside Van supplies a growing tribe of vandwelling adventure seekers with purpose-built, custom sprinter vans. Their upfitting service offers you the chance to work with one of their designers to help you configure a vehicle that makes living in a van everything you’ve ever dreamed of. Once the design is dialed in, they handle the entire van build and you get to sit back while everything's done for you.
Location: Portland, Oregon Specialty: Mercedes SprinterCost: Contact for pricing
If you’re looking for one of the best Ford van conversion companies, Sportsmobile is the way to go. And for those of you who often play in the Sierra, their Fresno and Reno locations are in close proximity to your favorite peaks and alpine lakes. There's not much they won't convert into a campervan: Ford E-Series, Ford Transit, Dodge Promaster, Mercedes Sprinter, Mercedes Metris, and Chevy Express.
Location: Fresno, California // Reno, Nevada // Austin, Texas // Huntington, IndianaSpecialty: Ford Vans, Pop Tops, Sportsmobile Classic 4x4Cost: View price list here
Oregon-based Van Specialties can perform custom van conversions on a wide variety of vehicle makes and models. They also offer truck customization, SUV customization, and RV customization. So if you still haven’t decided on the type of rig you want to build (maybe you own an SUV or pickup), Van Specialties might be a great place to start.
Location: Tualatin, Oregon Specialty: Working on a wide range of vehicles Cost: View price list here
Specializing in Mercedes Sprinter conversions, RB Components has a deep inventory of products for functional and stylish custom van interiors. One of the benefits of RB Components is that they have fully equipped “Gear Haulers” in stock. So if what you’re looking for is to expedite the buying process and hit the road ASAP, they can probably accommodate you. And if you’re looking for experience and credibility, they’ve been in operation since 2002.
Location: Santa Fe Springs, California Specialty: Mercedes Sprinter Cost: Interior builds starting at $31,000-$90,000; fully equipped and ready Sprinters starting at $240,000
Celebrating their 10 year anniversary in 2019, Colorado Camper Van serves those who want simpler packages like a pop-top roof or a pop-top roof and a basic interior, and also those who are looking for a more extensive van build out. Their homepage says it all “Our vans are an investment in both the tangible and intangible qualities of life: own a van, gain the memories that make life rich.”
Location: Loveland, Colorado Specialty: Pop-top roofs for all of the top brands Cost: $12,000-$35,000+
SYNC Vans makes the buying process easy by offering suggested layouts that you can personalize into the adventure van that’s right for you. Their website features an idea lab that makes exploring your design options fun. Check them out if you live near Idaho and you’re in the market for a quality van build out.
Location: Hailey, Idaho Specialty: Making the shopping experience easy and fun Cost: Starting at $32,000
Adventure Wagon specializes in innovative van interior systems that are modular and allow you to set up your sleeping area and cargo area so that they work just right for you. They refer to the benefit of their modular system as “future proofing” your van build, because modules can be easily added and subtracted, and your vehicle can evolve with you and your life traveling or living in a van.
Location: Tualatin, Oregon Specialty: Modular systems Cost: DIY van conversion kits starting at $11,500 (Trail Kitchens dealer!)
With a background in carpentry and engineering, Rossmönster Vans is one of the van conversion companies that offers particularly nice woodwork. Their focus is on delivering craftsmanship and functionality for a reasonable price. We could spend hours browsing the photo gallery on their site.
Location: Longmont, Colorado Specialty: Carpentry Cost: Contact for pricing
Vanworks is another van outfitter that has created a super convenient shopping experience, offering 3 packages from just the essentials to a complete, turnkey camper. They boast 40 years of service and experience. And if the Rocky Mountains are your playground, they just might be worth hitting up for details.
Location: Fort Collins, Colorado Specialty: User-friendly shopping experience Cost: Get a free estimate
Recon campers is committed to serving middle-class Americans who, like their founder, don’t have all the money in the world to throw down on their overland van, but still want to get out and explore our beautiful country. For an adventurous couple or small family that doesn’t want or need both a commuter vehicle and a weekend adventure van, Recon Campers is definitely worth checking out.
Location: Los Angeles, California Specialty: Van builds that don’t break the bank Cost: Starting at $6,000
According to this Southern California upfitter, their vans are “objects of desire that speak to our inner longings for perfection.” El Kapitan is focused on design, technology, and craftsmanship. Their stealth camper vans are impressive and luxurious, and they’re sure to satisfy the perfectionists among us (especially if cash ain’t the issue).
Location: Huntington Beach, California Specialty: Luxury vans Cost: Contact for pricing
July 26, 2018
October 18, 2016
Amazing 4 day backpacking trip starting in Buckskin Gulch near Wire pass in Vermilion Cliffs National Monument and ending at Lee's Ferry on the Colorado River.
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