Here’s a list of my favorite tools for van life, camping, downsizing and my own products! I hope these tools help you on your outdoor adventures.
Van Build Resources
Looking to build your own campervan? These books and tutorials will help get you started.
If you’re thinking about buying a Sprinter for your DIY campervan conversion, this incredible book will provide an invaluable reference guide for every step of your buildout. Well worth the money, Greg Keith’s book is the ultimate Sprinter bible. You’ll learn not only how to select the best Sprinter year and model for your needs, but also how to tackle every aspect of the conversion.
The Sprinter RV Conversion Sourcebook lays it all out with diagrams, tables, and pictures. Chapters are organized by different aspects of the conversion process, including cabinet building, designing electrical systems, and choosing the right solar setup.
What’s really cool about Greg’s 378- age book is that it comes in ebook format, and is regularly updated for free!
If you need help planning out the interior of your DIY campervan, you'll want to take a look at Far Out Ride's van build guides. The Builder's Package includes wiring, water, propane and floor plan diagrams & tutorials. You can also buy just what you need, with the wiring diagram and tutorial, water diagram and tutorial, propane diagram and floor plan and layout.
If you’re determined to convert your van, but don’t know a table saw from a hacksaw, Ben and Georgia Raffis’ excellent book could be all you’ll need! The authors stress that they built their dream van having never touched many of the tools they ended up using, and that zero skills or experience shouldn’t stop you from embarking on a DIY van conversion.
Van Build walks you through every step of how to build a campervan, including how to choose the right vehicle, designing the layout, and how to successfully plumb and wire your campervan.
Thanks to Ben and Georgia’s exhaustive research, you should be able to save a lot of time, and the latest version of the book includes a ton of vanlife community feedback on gas systems, bed options, and other hot topics.
Kate and Ben of Two Wandering Soles have built TWO vans and put together an extensive course on building your own van. Here's some of what you'll get:
- How to create a floor plan that fits your needs
- Fan and window installation
- Sound dampening, insulation and sub-floor
- Electrical and solar
- And so much more!
We also like that you can buy individual components from Kate and Ben if you just need help with one part of your van build process.
Scott from The Wanderful has been living in his self-converted Sprinter for over 4 years. Since his first build, he’s helped many van lifers on their own conversion journeys. He’s packed everything he’s learned in his Van Build Guide. Here's what’s included in the book:
- Full sketch drawings and wiring diagrams
- 11 detailed build sections
- Complete budget breakdown
- Full material and components list
The guide addresses everything you need to decide when planning your very own DIY conversion.
One of our very favorite things is boondocking in our campervan. Here are our favorite resources for finding free campsites, plus a couple cool RV camping memberships!
Grab a 30-Day Free Trial of The Dyrt Pro just in time for summer. Here are some perks:
- 5,000+ free camping locations
- 1,000+ discounted campgrounds
- $0 extra camping booking fees
- Get reservations at sold-out campgrounds
Try it for free, no strings attached — use code “wayward” to get 30 days free.
What’s a better gift idea than a brand new National Parks Pass! It’s giving them the gift of breathtaking scenery right out their kitchen window! One of the absolute gems of van and RV living in the United States is the number of protected national parks, monuments, and heritage sites to enjoy. But for one flat fee, the America The Beautiful National Park Pass will cover entrance fees to more than 2,000 federal recreation sites for a full calendar year.
The pass is valid for one year from the month of purchase and is also honored at sites managed by the U.S. Forest Service, Bureau of Land Management, Fish and Wildlife Service, Bureau of Reclamation, and Army Corps of Engineers. This is one of the best gifts to ensure lots of visits to national parks in the year ahead.
This is my product! I developed the Ultimate Boondocking Guide and Planner ebook as a way to help people who've never boondocked before. This ebook (PDF) includes tutorials on how to find free campsites using Motor Vehicle Use Maps and iOverlander, plus gear lists, shopping lists and plenty of fillable sheets for your planning.
The Ultimate Boondocking Guide & Planner is a great gift for folks who love camping off-the-grid.
Downsizing is a really hard part about going tiny. These resources will help you get rid of clutter so you can start living in van, RV or sailboat!
Downsizing is one of the hardest parts about moving into a tinier home! What do you do with all your stuff? I know the author, Chris DiCroce, personally. He and his wife went from a house to a sailboat, and know all the top secrets to downsizing. Unless an RVer or van lifer currently lives in a cupboard under the stairs, they likely have to adjust to life in an RV. Whether they're traveling for a weekend or full-time, it can be challenging to acclimate to the new environment. This book offers plenty of advice and insight on how to downsize one's lifestyle, meaning that the transition will be much smoother. Plus, it comes in an ebook version, making it available on Audible.