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Storage under rear seat?
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allsierra123
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PostPosted: Sun Nov 29, 2009 4:05 pm    Post subject: Storage under rear seat? Reply with quote

Just looking to utilize all of my under seat storage. Anyone have any boxes or compartments back there? Pics would be helpful.
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motelvw
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PostPosted: Sun Nov 29, 2009 4:26 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Good subject. Ours has always been a pit full of tools, griddle, dishpan, solar shower, jack, and whatever else fits. The PO put two eye hooks on the passenger side to strap a gallon of coolant to. That's about as far as organization gets in there.
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ZimZam
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PostPosted: Sun Nov 29, 2009 4:32 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I have been living at this site. I remember seeing this:
Image may have been reduced in size. Click image to view fullscreen.

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Sigeats
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PostPosted: Sun Nov 29, 2009 4:39 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Don't mean to hijack your thread, but what about the rear closet? Any cool ideas for using this space? Maybe adding a shelf? What do you keep back there?
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WW_Victoria
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PostPosted: Sun Nov 29, 2009 4:53 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I am in the planning stage of adding a door to the front - I am thinking of using a spare cabinet door from the water tank cabinet - or a spare closet door turned on its side.
We have two kids - with associated car seats - so we find it hard to access the under seat storage when traveling.
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sc-surfer
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PostPosted: Sun Nov 29, 2009 6:31 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Sigeats wrote:
Don't mean to hijack your thread, but what about the rear closet? Any cool ideas for using this space? Maybe adding a shelf? What do you keep back there?


I just added 2 shelves and a sliding drawer in the closet space. We never hang anything in there and now the space is much more useable.

Was going to build an under seat organizer as well.... until I burned up the motor in my table saw. Now I have to fix that before the organizer....

I'll take some pics of the new shelves and post them up here later tonight.
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koolmoe
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PostPosted: Sun Nov 29, 2009 10:14 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Our closet is packed with camping stuff - sleeping bags, blankets, sweatshirts, and I think there's even a tent in there...

Under the seat is mostly, um, operational stuff - tools, oil, bungee cords, duct tape, extension cords...

Small cabinet at the floor near bench seat is spare parts (not many).

Neat mod somewhere out there where fella added another side door, like is at the rear-side of the bus, inverted, to access the closet from the rear sleeping area instead of from the closet door itself. I think he put in shelves. I see where that's a big advantage on Westys where the door is blocked by the table.

Our rear 'closet' is mostly engine stuff, like coolant, funnels, and rags...
KM
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1621
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PostPosted: Sun Nov 29, 2009 11:00 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

koolmoe wrote:
Our closet is packed with camping stuff - sleeping bags, blankets, sweatshirts, and I think there's even a tent in there...

Under the seat is mostly, um, operational stuff - tools, oil, bungee cords, duct tape, extension cords...

Small cabinet at the floor near bench seat is spare parts (not many).

Neat mod somewhere out there where fella added another side door, like is at the rear-side of the bus, inverted, to access the closet from the rear sleeping area instead of from the closet door itself. I think he put in shelves. I see where that's a big advantage on Westys where the door is blocked by the table.

Our rear 'closet' is mostly engine stuff, like coolant, funnels, and rags...
KM


That's exactly how I've got all my gear packed. I'm a bit of an overpacker, and thus I've used every available cubic inch of space while keeping things organized into smaller bags. That way I can reach in and pull out the tool bag, or spare parts bag and know exactly what I've got in each one.

Looking forward to the closet shelf pictures though.

Also thinking of doing what Mootpoint did a while ago. I have all the parts in the basement, just haven't built up the courage to do so yet.

Image may have been reduced in size. Click image to view fullscreen.

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wavanagon
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 30, 2009 11:13 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

zimzam wrote:
I have been living at this site. I remember seeing this:
Image may have been reduced in size. Click image to view fullscreen.


Ohhh, this has inspired me.
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ZimZam
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 30, 2009 11:33 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

It's from Ben's site. I too will be removing my rear heater and thought this would be a nice, simple modification. It'll give the teen something to easy to work on while I finish the body work. Dancing
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allsierra123
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 30, 2009 11:50 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I would like to retain the rear heater. We have very cold winters here and it keeps the kids toasty.
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Perales
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 30, 2009 1:45 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

zimzam wrote:
I have been living at this site. I remember seeing this:
Image may have been reduced in size. Click image to view fullscreen.

For the record, that is Ben's van and site you are talking about.

http://www.benplace.com/
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ZimZam
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 30, 2009 6:35 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I thought I mentioned that above. I'm not taking credit for it. I just posted the pic. The dude is definitely not adverse to sharing his pics.
zimzam wrote:
It's from Ben's site. I too will be removing my rear heater and thought this would be a nice, simple modification. It'll give the teen something to easy to work on while I finish the body work. Dancing

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Californio
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 30, 2009 9:07 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

One thing that helps a LOT is getting your mechanical stuff out of the car altogether. The PO of my van installed a kind of trunk about 48" x 18" x 4" deep on the luggage rack, and all my tools, oil, chains, the rest of it goes in there. Also something about having coolant and other poisonous crap next to the stuff you eat on, not good. Just me I guess. I also have the spare mounted on the rear deck, which frees up a lot of space for blocks, hoses, etc. under the front.
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MootPoint
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PostPosted: Thu Dec 03, 2009 10:05 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

1621 wrote:
Also thinking of doing what Mootpoint did a while ago. I have all the parts in the basement, just haven't built up the courage to do so yet.
Image may have been reduced in size. Click image to view fullscreen.

It did take some cojones to finally pull the trigger on the sawsall (with a fine tooth blade) but the result was sure worth it. I only did this like two years ago and I still haven't figured out what sort of shelving to put inside so I'm hoping there are some good ideas here. I was thinking about putting some small "spice rack" sort of shelves on the inside of the door itself to hold small stuff since the sink drawer is overflowing and perhaps some kind of suspended shelves inside that could fold upwards if I had larger stuff to carry or need to access the very bottom which is where I keep the leveling ramps. BTW I have since fixed the drooping and bubbly trim in the photo.

Back to the original post...

I'm also looking at adding a door (I have a spare small next-to-the-outlet door) under the z-bed seat with a separate compartment behind it as a place to store some oil, maybe the Bentley, and other light maintenance stuff so I don't have to lift the whole bench seat to get at it when needed.

The other thing I have added to the bench storage is a lock. While not much of what I carry under there is particularly valuable, I wanted a secondary place to securely store stuff like the iPod or a camera or whatever if I felt it was necessary to do so at a trailhead or the like. Locks keep honest people honest and if someone really wanted in, they'd get in. This just slows 'em down a little.
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I am Wildcat
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PostPosted: Wed Nov 28, 2012 2:34 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Over the years, has anyone else come up with other storage solutions for under the rear seat?

I was thinking of something like Ben's van that has been posted here, but perhaps adding a tray or two that cover those existing openings and can be removed to access the existing openings. For example, the tray could be a few inches deep and house the things you frequently use, while your less used items were hidden underneath.
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MarkWard
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PostPosted: Wed Nov 28, 2012 2:48 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

We usually have the bed flat, which makes it difficult to access easily. I try to keep things in there that I don't need to access all the time, like my tool bag, jack, water hose, etc. We lost a little space to the espar, but zero regrets.

Image may have been reduced in size. Click image to view fullscreen.


Image may have been reduced in size. Click image to view fullscreen.

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MootPoint
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PostPosted: Wed Nov 28, 2012 4:11 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I took out my rear heater because I don't use the van in the winter (the few times I have the front heat has done the job with ease) and I wanted more under-seat space. Then I blocked off the vent with a scrap piece of kitchen laminate material and added a "front door" to the cabinet.
    Image may have been reduced in size. Click image to view fullscreen.

Like rsxsr, our bed is almost always down so the small door (from the same scrap kitchen unit) allows access to some stuff easily, the sort of things you need on the road like jumper cables, a quart of oil, a roll of paper towels, a basic tool roll or Mr. Bentley or Mr. Haynes. Heavy duty tools, the jack, real emergency stuff that you dont need often are all under main part of the seat.
    Image may have been reduced in size. Click image to view fullscreen.

To keep the two grades of stuff (daily vs. emergency) apart I built in a small box around the door so the easy stuff is always right there. I wish I'd built it just a hair larger as it's pretty tight but it works OK. Notice I had to cut a small notch for the support arm when the bench is closed. I don't think you really need to put a top on the little box the way I did, but oh well.
    Image may have been reduced in size. Click image to view fullscreen.

Works for me...

Safe travels.
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PostPosted: Wed Nov 28, 2012 6:03 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

In the near future, I plan to add this under the rear bench seat. Just enough cooling space for a few sandwiches and a couple of beers
Image may have been reduced in size. Click image to view fullscreen.

http://www.dometic.com/enus/Americas/USA/Truck/Refrigerators-Freezers/Products/?productdataid=84192

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PostPosted: Wed Nov 28, 2012 6:48 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Here's what I've got at the moment.

Full gear stowage mode. I don't always use the second table and don't like having the leg in place when I'm not using it. So it all goes under the bench. Leg butresses against the storage box and is velcroed in place.
Image may have been reduced in size. Click image to view fullscreen.


Table top removed for access to the stuff below. The Bentley and Pro-Training manuals rest on top of a false bottom on the storage box. Rear heater was removed by PO. The wife and I usually travel alone and don't use the Westy too much in the winter so we don't miss it.
Image may have been reduced in size. Click image to view fullscreen.


Some spare parts and fluids beneath the false bottom.
Image may have been reduced in size. Click image to view fullscreen.


I do agree with Californio as far as getting rid off a lot of the spare parts etc. I'm not travelling to Amazon anytime soon and will probably ditch the jug of coolant. I have been contemplating some more bins ala Ben. I really need some shoe storage for bike shoes and hiking boots and really like that idea of installing the narrow closet door horizontally at the bottom front of the bench to access a bottom shelf for shoes then have a top shelf above it accessible from the seat for other stuff.
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