Build an expedition truck: Shower (part 1)

Sketch of bathroom

2 years ago we started the challenge to build a comfortable home in the 8 square meter (=86ft2) camper unit of our expedition truck. An indoor shower was on the list of things we absolutely wanted with us on the road.

You can read in our interview with the Standaard why an indoor shower is so important to us.

The build of this shower didn’t come without its challenges.

Interior Layout

In the original layout we put the shower right in front of the entrance. Our reasoning was that this space would otherwise not be used and it could function as a wind “sluice”; preventing cold wind from entering the main room.

In a later phase we figured out that a different layout would give us more storage space and increase the roominess of our tiny home. And thus moved the shower to the left. (-> more about the other changes to the interior layout)

FYI: If we had to do it all over again, with the products that are on the market now, we would once again change the entire layout to create even more room. But that is for another article.

Shower pan

Like in the old layout we wanted a shower pan in front of the entrance for our muddy and wet boots. We know from experience that a shoe mat is drenched quickly once you have a few days of rain.We could have placed a regular boot tray, but this was not convenient right in front of the door. We wanted to keep the usable and visible floor space as large as possible, so we could easily move around. Therefore we decided to simply extend the shower pan.

First, we had to remove parts of the original floor and add the holes for the water drains. It was an interesting discussion between me and Elmer about how many drains we should install. More drains would make the build more complicated and require more holes through the floor. But not enough drains would result in water stagnating in the pan when the truck is not standing level. Some people advise to put a drain in each of the 4 corners (this was my personal preference) and others said we would be okay with two, one on each side. We eventually decided upon the latter. The future will tell if we made the right decision or not.

Update: We did not make the right decision. Since we’re never parked completely level, water always collects in one the corners. So we had to add more drains afterwards.

Aside from the standard size drains, the rest of the pan had to be custom-built. Sadly the first one (picture on the left), made by hand, could not be used due to too many bulges in the floor. These created a terrible noise when walking over. Thus we had no other choice to have a second one mechanically made. Luckily, we have a good friend who can do this for us. Otherwise, we had to rethink everything or spend a fortune.

More to come in Part 2!


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2 thoughts on “Build an expedition truck: Shower (part 1)
  1. Hi Nicole & Elmer
    Nicely done! The black shower inlet/flooring looks nice as well. Where did you get that from? Individual manufacturing?
    I am still amazed at what you come up with. All is well designed. Will be also interested to know what you would do differently now with the layout, if you could.
    Take care,
    Birdie

    1. Hi Birdie,

      Our welder made the shower inlet/flooring and then we had it powder-coated black for the clean finish.
      The foldaway shower took some time to develop, but we’re definitely proud of it. Working with a small space forced us to be creative.

      Don’t understand us wrong, We’re absolutely happy with our current layout. However, the Zepbox installs a bed in their units that you can lift up entirely to the ceiling with one hand. This would allow us to use the space underneath the bed to its fullest and makes the room more spacious. We will write about this soon 🙂

      Happy Travels,
      Nicole & Elmer

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