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How do you pack to reduce clutter? (packing accessories)
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davevickery
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PostPosted: Tue Oct 18, 2011 6:11 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I use the rooftop cargo area for a waterproof pelican type hard case that carries everything I need to have but don't normally need to get to. Recovery gear, jack, spare parts, and occassionally used camping gear.

I attached a short kitchen spice rack to the back of the pantry door. It holds small items on the door and doesn't take away much of the interior space.

I use the rear part of the westy rear cabinet for clean clothes. The top area for socks and underwear. The bottom areas for long pants, shirts, light jackets. It is easy to get to with the hatch open. Dirty clothes go in a bag under the seat.

The big part of the rear westy cabinet is a hassle. I want a weekender door to access it. But the bed setup stuff goes in there, my air compressor, the screens and front curtain, all kinds of junk.

I have made a 12" high x 18" wide box that fits nicely behind the passenger seat. It fits all kinds of food, and slides under the rear seat when folded down into a bed. It also makes a nice foot rest when sitting and reading in the van, or watching a movie.

It is usually just me in the van, so there is a ton of space.
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mike_hayes
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 04, 2012 10:12 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Do you guys not have little camping trailers over there?

http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Brenderup-1205s-Camping-...787wt_1304

Would solve all your storage issues and make a nice bed for the dog at night!
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randywebb
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 04, 2012 12:46 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

We do have an assortment of camping trailers over here.

But if you are going to the trouble of pulling a trailer, then why have a Westy? You could pull it behind a Toyota 4wd pickup, a Jeep, or whatever...
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 04, 2012 7:08 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

randywebb wrote:
We do have an assortment of camping trailers over here.

But if you are going to the trouble of pulling a trailer, then why have a Westy? You could pull it behind a Toyota 4wd pickup, a Jeep, or whatever...


You calling my a car a "whatever"? Why the nerve! Laughing

Some like trailers, but I'd rather skip them if possible. The only trailer I pull is full of kayaks and canoes - way more than you can fit on the roof. Typically 4 kayaks and a canoe, but up to 8 or 9 canoes/kayaks on it.
Triple AAA in Mass. doesn't cover trailers for towing - ask me how I know. Evil or Very Mad

I wouldn't want to haul a trailer on a long trip. A rear mounted box, or roof top box is way better than passing up the small ice cream shop with limited parking because of the trailer. OK, I actually parked in the shopping plaza across the street and took my life and my families into my hands when we crossed the busy, busy road to get our fix of MooseTracks.
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Belladonna30c
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 04, 2012 9:11 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Also being a Weekender owner, Mr. Belladonna30c and I also use the Mountain Hardware packing cubes. We each get one for our regular clothes, and we each get one for specialty gear (bicycle gear for me and whatever he needs in the other).

One tip on improving organization when using these cubes: gallon-sized ziplock-type bags (but the one's with the slider, Hefty, I think). I use one for socks, one for the unmentionables, one for bandanas, hankies, etc. I reuse them over and over and just store them inside my cube so they are handy for the next trip.

I also created a packing list that I printed (and revise/update as needed) and put in a plastic paper protector. I use a dry-erase marker to check off my list when packing for each trip, and wipe off to reuse for next time. It is very handy and prevents me from forgetting something important.

Shoes: we keep it pretty simple. We each bring a pair of hiking-type shoes and a pair of Keen sandals. We slide our day shoes under the bench/bed when it is folded out and our Keens stay visible for quick access for the midnight bathroom break for ourselves and our elderly dog. Specialty bicycle shoes are kept in my bicycle "cube". I also bring a pair of Crocs that I wear in public showers, but those stay with my shower kit.

We each get a front seat area to pile our daypacks, and layer clothes over the backs of the chairs that we need to slip on quickly for bathroom breaks in the night. I keep my down jacket accessible first so I can quickly get something warm after I slip out of the sleeping bag!

We also use a small variety of plastic tubs w/ lids and Action Packers. I essentially create "kits" to keep things organized and manageable. In addition, we use two medium-sized coolers and pre-freeze certain food and beverage items to help minimize the amount of ice we need to bring along.

I once read about a great packing strategy for coolers using a two-cooler system: you put less perishable items in the one you will frequently open (cold soda, beer, etc.) and more perishable items in the other (one you open sparingly). For my milk and OJ containers, I fill them half-full and freeze, then on the day we leave for our trip, I add more milk and OJ. So the frozen parts help keep the rest nice and cold.

It took a few trips for us to learn our system for staying organized, but once we were both "on the same page", it made setting up and breaking down camp a lot easier.
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rubbachicken
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 05, 2012 7:17 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

we kind of went the other way on this one, we put EVERYTHING in, and are gradually chucking stuff that we don't don't need out Rolling Eyes

we still have way way too much stuff on board, and we seem to be filling up

we weigh in at 5160 lbs right now Laughing
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Ahwahnee
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 05, 2012 8:20 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Best packing advice I ever heard was:

'Take half the clothes and twice the money you think you'll need'.
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Belladonna30c
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 05, 2012 10:21 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I forgot to add that one of our coolers gets used for The Lower Bed Extender that I made a couple of years ago.

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


You can check out the details here:
http://www.thesamba.com/vw/forum/viewtopic.php?t=411075&highlight=bed+extender
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kamzcab86
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 05, 2012 12:17 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ahwahnee wrote:
Best packing advice I ever heard was:

'Take half the clothes and twice the money you think you'll need'.


Ditto! Very Happy

Belladonna30c wrote:
I forgot to add that one of our coolers gets used for The Lower Bed Extender that I made a couple of years ago.


I did the same to my cooler:

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

Exact same height as the bed/seat. It's a bed extender, ottoman and extra seat all in one. Very Happy
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dhaavers
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 05, 2012 3:38 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Belladonna30c wrote:
...milk and OJ containers, I fill them half-full and freeze, then on the day we leave for our trip, I add more milk and OJ. So the frozen parts help keep the rest nice and cold...

Brilliant! We also prefer the 2-cooler system (#1-bevvies/#2-groceries). The smaller size
cooler allows either one to fit between the front seats while under way, as needed.

Thanks for the tip!
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brendanklein
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PostPosted: Sat Apr 21, 2012 9:54 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

been poking around for a few hours trying to find a thread that covered the topic I was after. this was the closest so I thought I'd start here.

I have an 87 tin top with just the rear bench, driver and passenger seat installed. I am planning on building a custom weekender type table for the mid section and I've got a pretty good idea how I'll execute that.

However, I am also thinking about building a raised deck over the rear trunk/engine area and couldn't find any images or chats about it on here. I envision the top of the deck ending flush with the top of the seat with the VW pad on top.

The goal would be to create a storage area that would be hidden from view, to discourage dumb dumbs from breaking into the van. I'd also like the deck to be removable for sleeping situations and have a dual purpose as maybe picnic table top with removable legs.

Do you guys know of anyone that's done anything like that? Any help/ideas would be appreciated.
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kuleinc
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PostPosted: Sat Apr 21, 2012 10:55 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Some people have used a roll up window shade... Not what you're planning to do, but that has been done...
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DAIZEE
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PostPosted: Sun Apr 22, 2012 8:57 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yep pre freezing everything sure helps. When we'd be crusing Lake Ontario, sailing that is, for several weeks, you start off with everything frozen, eat the tender meats and freshest foods first, and finally when everything has thawed because of course you are using block ice, then you can put your meats in a sealed container of a marinade for several days safely and this makes your tougher cuts of meats tender. I prefreeze big bottles of water too, when it melts its contained and drinkable. If I find someplace with a good freezer and they agree, I'll often pop my freezer packs in the back of their ice chest.

I'm going to try dry ice this year. Am still leary and unsure if my fridge actually works and leary re propaine leaks inside. Something I will have to get over. Also good to carry and doesn't take up much room is a vacuum packer as it will take the air (the enemy) out of things you buy along the way.

I carry the camp set up things in a rubber container in my luggage rack and all the things I don't need underway so they are out of the way, now with the Paulchen rack, I'll carry one lawn chair, bike and a few other things there. I'm going to sell my gazebo as it just takes up too much room and its too heavy. Going to use a very large tarp over top and out slider side.

The biggest thing I have to do is stop taking as much as I have as even for one it makes living/sleeping on the road difficult.
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PostPosted: Sun Apr 22, 2012 9:23 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

brendanklein wrote:
been poking around for a few hours trying to find a thread that covered the topic I was after. this was the closest so I thought I'd start here.

I have an 87 tin top with just the rear bench, driver and passenger seat installed. I am planning on building a custom weekender type table for the mid section and I've got a pretty good idea how I'll execute that.

However, I am also thinking about building a raised deck over the rear trunk/engine area and couldn't find any images or chats about it on here. I envision the top of the deck ending flush with the top of the seat with the VW pad on top.

The goal would be to create a storage area that would be hidden from view, to discourage dumb dumbs from breaking into the van. I'd also like the deck to be removable for sleeping situations and have a dual purpose as maybe picnic table top with removable legs.

Do you guys know of anyone that's done anything like that? Any help/ideas would be appreciated.


I had to do some digging, but I knew I'd seen what you're talking about. Check out this video from, JED THE SPREAD'. At about minute 2.20 you'll see his storage area.
http://campervanculture.com/2011/02/how-to-lift-the-rear-of-your-syncro-for-very-little-cash/
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PostPosted: Sun Apr 22, 2012 10:05 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

brendanklein wrote:


I am also thinking about building a raised deck over the rear trunk/engine area . . . I envision the top of the deck ending flush with the top of the seat with the VW pad on top.

The goal would be to create a storage area that would be hidden from view, to discourage dumb dumbs from breaking into the van . . .


I bought some big Rubbermaid brand plastic bins (with lids) to store my stuff in. I placed them in the rear, over the rear hatch, and put the cushion on top of the bins. The bins I purchased are just the right height so that the cushion is almost flush with the level of the backseat.

Looks natural, as if the cushion is supposed to be at that level. But very simple, and not a permanent modification to the van. Not a good place to store food, though, as heat will radiate up from the engine into your storage area.
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PostPosted: Sun Apr 22, 2012 10:18 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

The lower profile Rubbermaid bins just fit under my van. Great place to keep stuff out of the rain/sun and free up the van. Although for a dirt or sandy site, the bottoms can get messy.
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PostPosted: Sun Apr 22, 2012 10:41 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

What a GREAT idea. I've never thought of putting the stuff UNDER the rear mattress!!! Applause and under the van too!
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PostPosted: Sun Apr 22, 2012 12:03 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

vanagonjr wrote:
The lower profile Rubbermaid bins just fit under my van. Great place to keep stuff out of the rain/sun and free up the van. Although for a dirt or sandy site, the bottoms can get messy.


I have those bins as well, and I do bring a piece of carpet material that sand and stuff has a
hard time sticking too to put under the slider. The piece of material is used on my hitch haul's
mesh steel floor. I put it on first an then stack whatever I am taking with my on it. I helps keep
things dry and clean from the bottom of the HH. You can see the totes in this pic being hid under
the Westy.
Image may have been reduced in size. Click image to view fullscreen.

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PostPosted: Sun Apr 22, 2012 1:14 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

funagon wrote:
brendanklein wrote:


I am also thinking about building a raised deck over the rear trunk/engine area . . . I envision the top of the deck ending flush with the top of the seat with the VW pad on top.

The goal would be to create a storage area that would be hidden from view, to discourage dumb dumbs from breaking into the van . . .


I bought some big Rubbermaid brand plastic bins (with lids) to store my stuff in. I placed them in the rear, over the rear hatch, and put the cushion on top of the bins. The bins I purchased are just the right height so that the cushion is almost flush with the level of the backseat.

Looks natural, as if the cushion is supposed to be at that level. But very simple, and not a permanent modification to the van. Not a good place to store food, though, as heat will radiate up from the engine into your storage area.


good call on the food, I'll keep that in mind for sure!

going to look further into building a shelf, while on a run this morning I think I came up with an idea that I am going to look into.
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PostPosted: Sun Apr 22, 2012 2:39 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I really like the bins that fit under than van and in the trunk, that is a super awesome idea...
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