supplies not to forget for van living (1 Viewer)

Swimsushi

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Jul 22, 2020
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coastal Oregon
Hey yall!
I'm getting all my supplies ready for my van and I wrote a list. I'm wondering what are some little things people usually forget or might not come to mind until later that's needed/essential for van living. I almost forgot a can opener so I'd definitely love some input on other things I might not've thought've.

thanks!
 
We sell all kinds of other stuff in our Etsy store!

Matt Derrick

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are you going to have solar in your van? if you have the battery capacity i'd suggest getting a 12v fridge, it's quite the boogie upgrade, but it makes it a lot easier to eat well/healthy!
 
OP
Swimsushi

Swimsushi

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Jul 22, 2020
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coastal Oregon
are you going to have solar in your van? if you have the battery capacity i'd suggest getting a 12v fridge, it's quite the boogie upgrade, but it makes it a lot easier to eat well/healthy!
unfortunately no :( . it looks like it'll be a smaller soccer mom van or the like, so I planned for a cigar plug AC and USB charger and an igloo cooler. I'm planning on staying relatively close to towns so I'm hoping just picking up something frozen once in a while for the cooler will be okay. I don't have a big budget at the moment but I might be doing doordash and postmates for money so using my car enough to charge my phone and computer should be easy.

I appreciate you bringing that to attention! I'm getting SNAP soon so I'm going to cash in on the snap match at farmers markets as much as I can. vegetables and fruit for days!
 

Matt Derrick

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I made a video of my prius dwelling setup I was living in for about a year, and there's links to everything i used in the description (plus time codes if you want to skip to certain sections), so maybe it will give you some ideas for your setup :)

 

Jerrell

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Aug 27, 2017
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PDX
Honestly, if you're gonna be close to towns, go as minimal as you can and pick up the things you realize you need as you go.
 

Sameer

Wanderer
Joined
Dec 11, 2016
Messages
95
Location
Southwest
Seriously, Matt is correct. A 12 volt fridge, a small one will save you a ton of money. You can eat better.
I live in my van for 8 years. Here is a short list...
Some Tools...yes you can do it!
Folding Shovel
Something to poop in...
Key questions to ask yourself...
How will I prepare food?
How will I stay clean?
How will I poop?
How will I entertain myself?
What will I do if the van doesn't start?
There are a lot more questions to ask yourself. I've lived successfully squatting on public land for 8 years. Every individual's needs are different. I could not have done this without solar and life became quite wonderful when I finally invested in a 12 volt Whynter duel compartment refrigerator and freezer..
You will easily figure it all out!!!
Good luck to you! Public land is the perfect place to live.... You can live in the most beautiful places....
 

dprogram

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May 31, 2011
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610
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Riverdale Park, United States
Composting toilet or a similar setup. It really sucks to be in town and at 5 am you have to pee. You can get a 5 gallon bucket and some sawdust.

Regarding food supplies. Buy what you need when you need it. You can also double insulate a large cooler to make things last longer. You'll need ventilation too so screen and magnetic strips might be a worthwhile investment.

I wish you the best. It's hard at first but you'll figure out what works for you.
 

CloudyESTL

Pilgrim
Joined
Jan 18, 2019
Messages
49
Location
(((Dirty Denver)))
unfortunately no :( . it looks like it'll be a smaller soccer mom van or the like, so I planned for a cigar plug AC and USB charger and an igloo cooler. I'm planning on staying relatively close to towns so I'm hoping just picking up something frozen once in a while for the cooler will be okay. I don't have a big budget at the moment but I might be doing doordash and postmates for money so using my car enough to charge my phone and computer should be easy.

I appreciate you bringing that to attention! I'm getting SNAP soon so I'm going to cash in on the snap match at farmers markets as much as I can. vegetables and fruit for days!
hey at most truck stops they sell 12 volt cigarette plug run coolers....there is one that iv seen at every large stuck stop that is a cooler/warmer...it heats up leftover i guess...its only 130...they have others as well...but i recommend eventually getting solar set up down the road it makes like soo much eazyr....i mean shit a fridge is boogie bur able to play Sega genesis and kick back while my girl drives...now rhats BOOGIE AS FUCKK.
as far as forgotten things...doubble sidded sticky tape or other adhesive agent. and hooks..hooks..never can have too many hooks..
oh also one of those insecticide sprayer things...it can be used as a quick way to wash that add..if u must (where my del fans at)..
anyway way if i think of anything else ill post here...but most recommended is solar panels and a good inverter...but if only power is a must...like matt said its a luxury addition and you dont really need it...public places with accessable outlets are getting rarer and rarer these days...and if u charge up in the van u never leave your phone plugged in in a flying j and realise it when ur 2 hours away....
good lucknout there
 

TheDesertMouse

Pilgrim
Joined
Aug 23, 2018
Messages
67
Location
America’s
shovel

Bottle jack, fuck those scissor jacks

quart of engine oil, antifreeze, brakefluid, maybe gear and tranny oil too.

Make sure your tool set has the socket sizes for your lugnuts if you dont have a tire iron. Most sets don’t

A repair manual for your make and model.

A notebook to keep detailed records of ALL maintainance, and something to store reciepts in. Very helpful if you ever sell your rig. And if you ever get paid above the income tax threshold it makes itemizing those deductions easier.

‘Unstuck kit’: A 1’x1’ piece of plywood to mount the jack on, something to throw under the wheels for traction like some 2x6’s or carpet.

Rope.

Spare. Keys. I always keep a spare tucked away in a pocket somewhere or hidden on the outside of the van.
 

Jerrell

Vagabond
Joined
Aug 27, 2017
Messages
311
Location
PDX
Expanding on @TheDesertMouse 's post with my exoerience the past couple years...
Agree with the shovel, jack, quart of oil, and lugnut socket advice 100%.
I don't carry the other liquids (antifreeze, etc due to space limitations and stores being everywhere). I carried a scissor jack, hate them, for a year before getting a hydraulic jack. I chose that over a bottle jack because I've been using them my whole life. It takes up a LOT more space than the bottle jack.
To expand on the socket thought, I don't carry a full socket set. I identified the most common sizes I'd need for my van and only brought those. I have a decent sized socket wrench, torque wrench, and extention bar (a long pipe that fits over the two wrenches to get better leverage). I also carry a few other random tools like various screwdrivers and plyers, a C-clamp (for changing my brakes), and other tools I've found uses for. I can always find more tools down the road when needed.
Repair manuals are nice when you don't have mobile data.
Wish I'd known about the "unstuck kit" type thing earlier in life. That sort of thing is mandatory if you're leaving the city.
Always rope, paracord, both.
Agree 100% with the spare key thing as well. Not just for locking yourself out, but if you're traveling with a friend then they will have a key and not always be asking for yours.
 

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