Thistle - Ex Ambulance to...... well hopefully something else

Duckato

Full Member
@Millie Master, thanks I had never heard of them before I will give your suggestion a try.
I tend to use T&G and I have an account with them but it is always worth comparing prices

This afternoon in the damp yukness I have pretty much dismantled the entire dashboard including removing the steering wheel.

That allowed me to remove the remains of the old radio harness that they had chopped off and I have also now gained access to the rest of the remaining loom so tomorrow I can get it all out.

I needed to remove the steering wheel anyway because I have an OEM Cruise Control Retrofit kit to install.

It was also worth taking the cluster out for another reason, much Coffee seems to have conglomerated at the base and it is all very sticky and ughhh so It can clean everything as well.

I have just given the steering wheel a good wash as well.

It's just before 17:00, Isn't it nice the evening are already getting longer!
 

Duckato

Full Member
Ironically I have just googled Boys & Boden and their Shrewsbury depot is just yards from GMC Motorhomes
We went there approx 18 months ago to look at the Hobby range of Campers but the prices even for 2nd hand set us on this self build course.
 

Duckato

Full Member
Introducing Thistle 2 (temp name till we think of something more appropriate)

I have bought another one!
Exactly the same model as in this doc albeit with quite a few miles on the clock and in need of a bit of TLC (underside stinks of and is smothered in Diesel).

Was Type B A&E UK

It also, like so many that go through the Auctions, has been got at as it went through the 'food chain'
Fortunately things have been unplugged rather than chopped (afaik) I looked at several that had been completely butchered

Two of the four Auxiliary batteries have gone missing since I first agreed to buy it which probably explains why nothing electrical in the box works anymore
when I viewed it the automated speech system door open warnings etc was working because she kept telling me the Auxiliary battery was low but she is silent now which might be a good thing!
The Inverter has disappeared.
The PVR is still present but the displays have been removed
Both Ambulance control panels have been removed.
The rear door Espagnolette Bolt is broken as in snapped in half internal to the lock - no idea how any could have broken that it is 10mm Stainless!

Its got two built in 115 V chargers unfortunately, I am hoping the PSUs are variable voltage or may have a 115/230 switch

This one is going to be specifically for just the two of us and probably for shorter journeys especially in the Winter simply because of the insulation it already has

I am going to build them both in parallel to a degree if I can however I will be spending a lot more time understanding the wiring on this one.
I am not going to gut the van & intend to keep as much of the furniture and built in systems as possible.

Does anyone know of a source of info for the Genisys electronics specially the protocols used by the controls panels?
Can, RS 432 etc?


The devil in me thinks can I control it all via a Laptop!
 

Duckato

Full Member
Not yet no but it will, wiring and interior layout permitting.
It has a communication window in the Cab already so it could be sort of squeeze through!

That's something I will be assessing there may well be lot of cabling crossing the bulkhead behind the seats as the Genisys system is behind the drivers seats and the two battery chargers are behind the passenger seat.

There are a couple of Ex NI Ambulances for sale here that are walk through already:

Walkthroughs

They are unmolested but they were manual and I wanted Auto.
I spent a while there with Simon the owner, and he was extraordinarily helpful especially on the electrical side of things. even though the Camper Van fraternity are not exactly his primary customers.

Until I met him I had never heard of Ludo Mcgurk
I quite like the idea of a quick disconnect 240V cable ;)
 

Duckato

Full Member
Meanwhile work on Thistle 1 progresses (well not today as it freezing):

  • All Ambulance wiring is out.
  • Oem wiring made good and tested.
  • Oem Cruise Control fitted - (I will need to go to Listers to get it coded though).
  • I thought I had a problem with the windscreen washer but it turned out to be operator error! I did not know the stalk was the double push type & have since RTFM!
  • I have fitted a Tow bar and spare wheel carrier
  • I suspended the van AC blower and removed the headlining, the screws for the sun visor were loctited in and have been, to date, the hardest things to undo on the entire van.
  • I will be starting on the wiring for the reversing Camera weather permitting.

I have two OEM cables I can't identify
They are both small 4 way connectors (a bit like those used as USB headers on a PC motherboard.
one is centre rear alongside the connector for the OEM rear courtesy light and one centre front on the van side of the bulkhead.
 

Val Dunn

Full Member
Introducing Thistle our low mileage (for an Ambulance) van conversion project.
I will start by saying I was primarily looking for an Auto so anything would have done.
Over the last few months I have watched and waited for something under £10k to come along and sure enough eventually one did.

View attachment 36


Thistle is an uprated (by SVtech) Crafter, 4000KG on the weight plate 3850KG on the V5.
Fitted with just about the right amount of windows including rear wipers and HRW, Air assist rear suspension, Side step, Espar aircon and D4, an 1800W Inverter, single passenger seat & some very well made (and secured) overhead lockers
Those are the bits I will be keeping but I will be stripping everything out and starting with a clean slate.

I have already removed three very heavy seats and this thing which probably weighed 250KG and I will probably be selling on Ebay if I can't find a use for it (might be able to adapt it for my Tractor) as it is rated at 500KG so can easily cope with a Motorbike so a shame to see it wasted


Thistle has been properly decommissioned and I bought him looking like this:

View attachment 37

View attachment 38

View attachment 39
 

Val Dunn

Full Member
Hi, We have purchased an NHS Scotland Peugeot boxer ex ambulance and have hunted for the inverter. Where was yours located in your Crafter as we are wondering if ours has been removed. We can't even get the lights inside to work so god knows where we will start on this project. Inverter first then we can see what works hopefully!!
 

trevskoda

Full Member
What on gods earth would you want a inverter for,all should be 12v and gas,yes a lot of rewiring on any van to use as a camper,this is the bit most folk fail on,many a classic m/bike i bought was all sorted ex wiring at which point folk gave up and sold on.
Site down with a sheet of paper and work out where your wire runs are required because its the first thing in before building,hope all works out for you and do post build pics as you go,cheers
 

Val Dunn

Full Member
I thought the lights would be 240 v as we can't get them to work. We are totally new to this so will learn with all the tips from here. What about hair dryers. Straighteners etc how do you operate them on 12v or do we do without haha
 

Millie Master

Full Member
I thought the lights would be 240 v as we can't get them to work. We are totally new to this so will learn with all the tips from here. What about hair dryers. Straighteners etc how do you operate them on 12v or do we do without haha
If you haven't already got one Val, I suggest you buy yourself an easy to use circuit testing volt meter.

As you are new to this totally captivating world of ours, just in case you get totally stuck, there might be one of our members who doesn't live all that far away from you who might be able to lend you a hand.

Phil
 

trevskoda

Full Member
I thought the lights would be 240 v as we can't get them to work. We are totally new to this so will learn with all the tips from here. What about hair dryers. Straighteners etc how do you operate them on 12v or do we do without haha
YEP no hair driers etc though you can buy 12v ones,hair straightners,all are hair grows straight out and down.
What you do is build the van 12v but have a ehu socket to a fuse board for charger and say two 230v sockets for use on hookup,you may use an inverter but will require a large bank of batterys,say 2 or 4 making about 400ah in total,from this you could run a m/wave also.
My self build is all gas /12v exc for one inverter to run a 230v boiler,other than that i would use gas to heat a kettle of water,my toilet wash room has a 12v flip down unit from a council van,cost 25 bucks and is the bogs dollocks.
 

Attachments

Val Dunn

Full Member
YEP no hair driers etc though you can buy 12v ones,hair straightners,all are hair grows straight out and down.
What you do is build the van 12v but have a ehu socket to a fuse board for charger and say two 230v sockets for use on hookup,you may use an inverter but will require a large bank of batterys,say 2 or 4 making about 400ah in total,from this you could run a m/wave also.
My self build is all gas /12v exc for one inverter to run a 230v boiler,other than that i would use gas to heat a kettle of water,my toilet wash room has a 12v flip down unit from a council van,cost 25 bucks and is the bogs dollocks.
 

Val Dunn

Full Member
That looks brilliant. We want our rear bed up a height so we can use the back as a garage when we're away rallying. Great tips too thanks folks. I will put up photos when we get onto it. Is it best to have a toilet room as space might be limited?
 

wildebus

Full Member
....my toilet wash room has a 12v flip down unit from a council van,cost 25 bucks and is the bogs dollocks.
Ref the flip-down unit Trev mentions ... it is an Eberspacher unit and is very good. I have one for sale if anyone is looking for one (I was going to use it in the shower room in my conversion but I never fitted the shower room so never fitted the water unit either)
 

Val Dunn

Full Member
Ref the flip-down unit Trev mentions ... it is an Eberspacher unit and is very good. I have one for sale if anyone is looking for one (I was going to use it in the shower room in my conversion but I never fitted the shower room so never fitted the water unit either)
 

Val Dunn

Full Member
How much would you be looking for your sink unit? There may possibly be room to erect that above the toilet. I don't think we are going to have room for a shower room as such.
Thanks
 

wildebus

Full Member
How much would you be looking for your sink unit? There may possibly be room to erect that above the toilet. I don't think we are going to have room for a shower room as such.
Thanks
Hi, I'd be after £25, same as what Trev paid for his (and we know Trev always sniffs out a bargain!)
Postage extra.
I am heading south in around 2 hours so depending where you are I could deliver (but don't want to carry it around 'just in case' so would have to know you were taking it).
Fully working and clean but it is used so not pristine.
 

Bouydog

Full Member
Hi, I'd be after £25, same as what Trev paid for his (and we know Trev always sniffs out a bargain!)
Postage extra.
I am heading south in around 2 hours so depending where you are I could deliver (but don't want to carry it around 'just in case' so would have to know you were taking it).
Fully working and clean but it is used so not pristine.
Good buy £300+ new !!
 

wildebus

Full Member
This is the unit (cover removed so I could clean and check it over before testing it)
IMG_20171109_113636.jpg


They are handy units and provide cold water and hot water from the resevoir without the need to plumb in any feed or waste supplies. Ideal for a wash room.
 
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