With everything we created for our expedition truck we asked ourselves:
- What is the minimal space it requires to use it effortlessly?
- Can we make it multifunctional?
- Is it overland-proof?
- How will it look in combination with the rest?
This was no different when designing the shower. We realized quickly that the amount of space it would take up was an issue, especially since we only use it a few minutes* a day.
* A strange thing happens when traveling overland. You become very conscious about your water usage. In a regular western home, you open a faucet and water flows. Most of us don’t even think about it; it feels like there is an unlimited resource of water. There is no real incentive, aside from the water bill and environmental concerns maybe, to treat water as something precious. This all changes when living inside an overland vehicle. You are directly responsible for filling up the water tanks – best before running out of it. And as a result, you quickly learn what a navy shower is all about.
So we quickly focused on turning that empty space into something multifunctional. Our first idea was to put a slide-out closet into the shower. However, this was difficult to accomplish in our layout. Then the idea of a foldaway shower came to life. This would give us more room to walk around inside our expedition truck and more importantly it would also make our tiny house visually larger. In addition, even when folded away (when it is not in use) we maintain enough space behind the doors to hang up wet towels or jackets (and the fan is installed in such a way that it can still suck out the humid air).
–> See part 1 to find out how we constructed the shower pan.
The shower walls
(click the images to see them full-size).
180º turning shower doors
To make this idea reality we needed to find 180° turning hinges for the doors. This turned out to be a huge problem. We almost gave up. “Should we install a regular fixed bathroom instead?” When visualizing this with large cardboard boxes, we knew immediately that would be a big mistake. It completely cramped up the living unit and blocked a lot of natural light.
There was no turning back. The bed, the cabinets, kitchen, … were all custom-made and installed; there was no other place left in our expedition camper where we could install the shower. We had to move forward with our foldaway shower idea.
Eventually, we purchased 2 brand new glass shower doors. The doors itself were not the right size or overland-proof, but we hoped we could reclaim the 180° turning hinges. We smashed the glass and replaced them by Alu-Dibond panels. And voila, we had our shower doors.
In a next post we will show you what is behind the small door inside the shower …
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