Below, you'll find a broad collection of details about the van - How we got it, and how Mike converted it from minivan to badass 4x4 overlander. We hope these stories will helpful to other budding #Vanlife and DIY and campervan builders.
Vandalf the Beige - 2003 Chevrolet Astro Van AWD
Mike started the "Astrolander" (Astro-Overlander) project in 2009, just after Annika was born.
Given that Kimberley hadn't done much camping, and that we'd be travelling with a toddler, comfort and convenience were a primary concern. The Chevrolet Astro was chosen as a happy "middle ground" between the iconic but aging Volkswagen Westfalia Bus and Vanagon, and the large and expensive Sportsmobiles and similar modern adventure vans.
Done almost entirely as a DIY "Home Build", Vandalf was the ultimate budget solution and brought us much joy!
After acquiring our new rig in February 2022, Vandalf was sold to a young family who appreciated the Astro Van platform and continue to use him on more adventures!