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Man Turns Old VW Bus into Solar-Powered Electric Vehicle


This is the story of Brett Belan’s DIY Solar-Powered VW EV Bus. He bought an old VW bus and turned it into his very own solar-powered electric vehicle.

Brett Belan and his wife Kira have built a full electric solar powered volkswagen bus and converted it into a camper 1

Can you imagine having your own electric vehicle that you can charge using the sun wherever you may be?

Man Buys Old VW Bus and Turns it into a DIY Solar-Powered EV

Brett Belans Solar Powered EV VW Bus 001

Images via YouTube/Dylan Magaster

Brett Belans Solar Powered EV VW Bus

Brett Belans Solar Powered EV VW Bus Interior

Brett Belans Solar Powered EV VW Bus Kitchen

Brett Belans Solar Powered EV VW Bus 002

Brett Belans Solar Powered EV VW Bus 003

Brett Belans Solar Powered EV VW Bus 004

Brett Belans Solar Powered EV VW Bus 005

Brett Belans Solar Powered EV VW Bus 006

Brett Belans Solar Powered EV VW Bus Seats

Brett Belans Solar Powered EV VW Bus Luxury Seats

Brett Belans Solar Powered EV VW Bus 007

Brett Belans Solar Powered EV VW Bus 008

Brett Belans Solar Powered EV VW Bus 009

Brett Belans Solar Powered EV VW Bus 0010

Images via YouTube/Dylan Magaster

Solar-Powered Electric VW Bus Conversion

It’s the ultimate nature enjoyment vehicle.1

Read more

Sources

  1. YouTube
  2. Solar Electric VW Bus

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Alex

Alex is a contributor and editor for TinyHouseTalk.com and the always free Tiny House Newsletter. He has a passion for exploring and sharing tiny homes (from yurts and RVs to tiny cabins and cottages) and inspiring simple living stories. We invite you to send in your story and tiny home photos too so we can re-share and inspire others towards a simple life too. Thank you!

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{ 7 comments… add one }
  • Jerry Dycus September 15, 2018, 2:40 pm

    Great job!! VW buses are one of the best EVs to make electric.
    Though using used EV lithium which cost less than lead now is far better, less weight, more kwhs, range.
    He needs to put a rounded front on the alum roof box would help range even at 50mph.
    If it were mine, I’d start with an older, lighter one, do it without the top with a lightweight aero trailer instead, clean up the aero using flexible cells on both and Chevy Volt used lithium battery modules .
    Using 7kw or 25kw plus a 4 kw module he can use the same charger, etc , just using a 404 wthr meter like he has to cut the charging off.
    Since I don’t have a VW van, they are costly, I’m doing it with an all composite 63 Vette looking EV and aero trailer with solar and fold out solar panels too.

    • Alex September 15, 2018, 4:52 pm

      Would love to learn more about your 63 Vette EV project!

      • Jerry Dycus September 15, 2018, 10:23 pm

        Hi Alex,
        I rented a 63 Vette drag racer body mold, USBody in Lakeland Florida, and laid up a much heavier composites and now making the chassis mold and together make a very strong and lightweight, aero monocoque/unibody, far stronger, safer, lighter than the
        original.
        I hope to put it into production as now legal to sell 325/yr with only hot rod regulations.
        And looking for a Tesla rear end, suspension to put in it along with 2 Volt battery packs should get 170 mile range very quickly at
        1800lbs!
        I already have been building, driving lightweight EVs like my EV trike pickup and it’s 14′ trailer, subcars made mostly from epoxy/plywood as so easy, strong, light, low cost , over 25 yrs but now want something to tow long distance.
        And always loved the 63 Vette as one of the, if not the best looking car every built and the only way I can afford one is building it from scratch.
        I also picked it as enough room to sleep in it while charging, avoiding motels and I need to lay down at times from back problems so a very TH too. ;^)
        BTW I’ve built racing, high speed boats from these materials for 45 yrs and these are really small lightly loaded compared to the multihull, sail, powerboats I do and they make great THs too.

        • Alex September 17, 2018, 12:56 pm

          This is fascinating, Jerry, is there anywhere we can see any photos of your projects?

        • Jerry Dycus September 17, 2018, 4:38 pm

          The Vette is still just a composite part as I get the chassis done so not much to picture yet.
          You can see the mold, parts out of it and examples of finished 63-67 Vettes by going to USBody and on the left click on 63-67 Corvette shows a lot. Click on the picture and more show up. Mine will look mostly like the blue one.
          Google JavaCat Key West for a cat I did back in 86 still running strong.
          And put FreedomEV into image and the black or white subcar that pops up is my FreedomEV.
          A website, ‘Sunrise2 EV’ has so more under The Project Team including an old EV trike pickup, the FreedomEV.

        • Alex September 18, 2018, 11:38 am

          I’ll check it out, thanks!!

  • Bill Burgess September 15, 2018, 7:38 pm

    If you close your eyes you would think by his philosophy he is in his 70’s….Some of us took WAY too long to uae the brain cells we had. His abilities are obvious and fit and finish is to be desired as well. I am with Jerry as to the recommended upgrades and bones package. Starting with a Westy would same some time but the builder did it out of pocket and used his own skills…..And to think I had TWO of these in my youth…Just used them never considered he value I was getting away from. Great build and even better lifestyle.

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