Been There, Done That, Vanagon maintenance guide
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Good Books on Amazon
Managing 12 Volts: How to Upgrade, Operate, and Troubleshoot 12 Volt Electrical Systems

Batteries in a Portable World: A Handbook on Rechargeable Batteries for Non-Engineers, Third Edition Isidor Buchmann

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Smart Mods

The things we do to make 'em better
Best Mods for the Vanagon

From the "Best Mods for the Vanagon" thread 3/2 - 33/2004:

the best mod for me was the sew-on Wheelskin leather steering wheel cover. - TJ Hannink tjhannink@YAHOO.COM

easy... gene berg short shift kit... so nice. - David Johnson drjohnso@TELUS.NET

Another van mod: about $6-8K in the bank to keep just ahead of the crisis
curve. -Bob Stevens mtbiker62@HOTMAIL.COM

but there are other things that are nice, too. fog lights, vent
shades, and on and on and on. but to me, the one that i use the most (well ...cept for the steering wheel) is the grab handle on the driver's side. - joel walker jwalker17@EARTHLINK.NET (see grab handle in mods)

he best mod I've done other than the conversion so far is Darrell
Boehler's Digitool... Mark Cumnock kayakwesty@YAHOO.COM

Best mod is a 5-speed transmission. I got mine from Weddle Industries, Santa
Barbara, California. This gives the old Westy 4 gears with 5% more power
(lower gearing) and 5% overdrive in 5th. Fourth (4th) gear goes out to 65 mph comfortably and can go to 70 mph. Without a loaded down Westy, I can go up the grapevine, California's Interstate 5, in 4th gear slowing down to 60 at some places. Fifth gear (5th) gear allows cruising at 75 mph on I-5 and can go to up to 85mph at about 4500 rpm. All this on the stock 2.1 liter engine.
George Mercer Gamercer@AOL.COM

I have two simple modifications on my '84 that save much grief: 1) Bosch
WR-1 starter relay; and 2) Kennedy Engineering radiator bleeding valve
(makes refilling and bleeding the cooling system very simple).
John Lauterbach lauterba@BELLSOUTH.NET

My favorite mod: a light directly over the sliding door of my Westy, put
in by the previous owner. I'd have never thought to do it myself, but
now I couldn't live without it. It's great being able to open the
sliding door at night and immediately flick on a light without having to
reach across the van. It's a very useful mod that's also easy and cheap
- the best kind. Ron Salmon vanagon@BUSDEPOT.COM

One mod I've been making on my last few vans is sailboat type cleats on
the sides of the pop top, allowing me to tie things (like lumber,
surfboards, etc) up there. Two to the side one up front just behind the
luggage rack and one in back. I keep a length of line tied between them
so I always have it handy. John Jensen,

See Comments on this entry (F.W.I.W.)


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