Van Transformation: Samson by Ventured Campers 18 Aug 2021 | Joe and Eunice from Ventured Campers
For the original article, visit https://www.camplify.com.au/blog/van-transformation-samson-ventured-campers
Samson is a lovingly restored and completely self-sufficient, vintage pop-top campervan. He is uniquely handcrafted and full of character! He includes stylish and unique interiors and has all the modern amenities that will make your adventures cosy and comfortable. We had a chat with Joe and Eunice from Ventured Campers about their journey transforming Samson into the handsome fella he is today.
Who we are My name is Joe Hurley, I'm 29 and from Brisbane, Queensland. My wife Eunice and I joined the Camplify family at the start of 2020 after finishing our first campervan build we called Bilbo. We had recently returned from a year-long trip in Europe where we travelled the European continent in a 1988 Fiat Ducato campervan. When we returned back to Australia, we wanted to share this incredible vanlife lifestyle and decided to create our own fleet of unique campervans which we named - Ventured Campers. When we finished building our first campervan, it seemed like every question we had regarding things like how to market, insure, transact, verify hirers, bonds etc were already answered by Camplify. We joined straight up and they have looked after us ever since. We have only admiration and gratitude for their amazing team and user-friendly platform and it is great to be a part of this community! Why did you decide to convert a van? Originally, I was a FIFO geologist for 5 years. When Eunice and I returned from our year abroad, I was faced with a decision of whether to return to my previous lifestyle in underground mining or forge a new path in a field I was passionate about. I was so inspired by our trip overseas that I chose the latter. Having travelled Europe in a vintage motorhome, we wanted to focus on restoring vintage campervans and breathing new life into these sturdy and timeless classics. We wanted to encourage others to venture out on the road, to explore Australia and experience the amazing freedom and adventure that comes with vanlife. How long did your van conversion take? A lot longer than we expected! Each build takes approximately 6-7 months to complete. The internal build probably takes approx 2-3 months to finish, whereas the longest process is the rust repair, painting and mechanical upgrades on the 80’s model campers (approx 4 months).
Would you rather, more storage space or an in-van shower/toilet? Definitely an in-van shower and toilet. In Australia, the most beautiful landscapes are often the most remote. If you need to travel to a campsite at the end of the day to use basic facilities, then you will miss out on all the amazing sunsets and sunrises this country has to offer. We also think having your own private van shower/toilet (and not needing to constantly search for public facilities) is key to being super comfortable on the road. Holy moly! What a transformation?
What's one feature you would not compromise on? We wanted to separate ourselves from the common mentality of ‘lowest cost price’ equals the quickest /easiest van conversion and really invested in using high-quality materials (especially recycled Australian hardwoods) and spending extra time to ensure the van was built with the utmost craftsmanship. We also wanted to stay consistent with our Ventured Campers style and aesthetic - all of our 3 campers resemble small cabins on wheels that are homey and complete with all the modern luxuries and comforts so that our hirers would love being inside just as much as they love being outdoors. Stunning interior
Where did you go to find inspiration? Our biggest inspiration would certainly come from simply travelling a year in a campervan. When we travelled Europe, we spent so much time in our van that we constantly made small modifications to make life on the road that little bit easier and more comfortable. The ideas and concepts that were formed on our trip helped us to formulate what we thought would be the perfect van. We are still constantly modifying our campervans and we will always try to improve on each addition to our van family. Talk about cabin on-wheels
What is one thing you wished you'd known before you started? How to weld properly. I naively thought it would take a day or two to figure out, but it’s like a mysterious ancient martial art that seems to take a lifetime to master properly. All the modern comforts...
What is one piece of advice you'd offer a first-time van renovator? Try to plan things in steps. If you look at a blank canvas of a van you can sometimes feel overwhelmed at where to begin and what to do first. By breaking the whole build into a series of steps, it makes it more manageable and easier to conquer goals than one gargantuan build. Imagine waking up here!
What's something you wish you could change about your van? We are very happy with the interior build. A new engine would be nice to give the old boilers a bit more horsepower, but some say that that is also part of the unique experience of driving a vintage campervan. You can most certainly cook up a storm in Samson
What is your funniest/best hirer story? One of my best friends from university wanted to take his partner for a weekend in our vans. He was a bit quiet about who it was - turns out it was Olympic champion Cate Campbell!! She gave Bilbo the Gold medal of approval. What's next for Ventured Campers? We are expecting a baby early next year so I’d say that will become a large part of our focus and we can't wait to take our growing family on the road! Our next project is restoring a beautiful 1969 Franklin caravan which we hope to add to our fleet by Jan 2022. Which Camplify owner would you like to see on our next van tour? We would love to see a van tour from Drifters Campervans! Thanks for sharing Ventured Campers