Making of – Converting a HZJ 78 into a camper (Part 2)

It has been a while ago, and I have to admit we have used our car already for about 4.800 kilometers now, but still worth to show some photos of the conversion work. Somewhere in July this year the time had come and we could pick-up our car with all the pre-work done by the Desert-tec guys.

The first thing we learned, the guys working at the petrol station just love you, they even accept 200 Euro notes, even-though a sign clearly states that they don’t. 🙂

ausbau-1Fantastic car and driving it home with a smile on the face (what still has not changed), even though you line-up with all the trucks not stressing the new engine too much (okay that has changed).

But how to turn it into a cozy little camper you want to spend your time in? Well lots of work and a lot of new things to learn in case you are not a carpenter. That you start with the floor is an obvious thing, beside handling all the insulation work (which is really not much of fun).

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Essential part of any construction work is of course is having some drinks at hand. 🙂


As soon as you have the insulation and flooring work done, it looks already much better and it is time to fit in the cooler, in our case a 50l Dometic. As it takes some space away and you want to have it in reach while camping or driving, it is advisable to find the place for it first and then build all the furnitures around it.

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Of course we also wanted water in our car, having a 44l water tank underneath the car, you need a pump so that you can also get a shower running. Be careful when installing your water pump, I did it the wrong way and realized it when all the furniture was installed already. 🙁


Beside the amount of work, you have the pleasure that a lot of decisions are to be made. Toughest one for us was the question which wood to use and which color. You can buy a lot of wood for camper furnitures, but most of it looks like a classical caravan or it does not create a warm atmosphere, so we ended up using mainly 10mm poplar plywood for the furnitures and only some selected parts are made of more stronger material. For the design we used d-c-fix foil, needs to be seen how long it will last, but so far it looks still good and a lot of internet reviews pretend that it should be okay. 

Anyway, pictures tell more than words, in that sense, just have a look.

ausbau-10 ausbau-8 ausbau-9 ausbau-12 ausbau-14The great thing with our LandCruiser is that you can even sit underneath it, makes some part of the work much easier, isn’t it, Lemmi? 🙂


Well and final checks are also done and as it seems we got the work accepted…


And as it goes, after the first trip we had some adjustments and fine-tunings to be made. Just realized that I never took a photo of the finished car, so maybe one more making-of to come soon.

But now first using the car a bit and just enjoying it.