A light to shine the way home

So right before we left for our Thanksgiving trip to Oregon we finally got power to the bus. Trevor got all the panels connected and we hooked up the first strip of DC lights and we thought all was in the clear. The day before we left all he wanted to do was connect the charge controller and make sure everything was running correctly. However, nothing runs as smoothly as we would like. When he turned it on instead of one light coming on all the lights were lighting up. We read the manual, tried trouble shooting the problem and still had no luck. Eight hours later and two calls to tech support it turned we had a defective product. They sent another controller out while we were away and the first thing we did upon returning was connect it. Success!! In fact it was fairly anticlimactic when it turned on. My brother’s friend Chris Anderson was nice enough to donate an old wireless router in exchange for a tour of the bus and we can now monitor exactly what is happening with the solar array. 

We have been blessed with unseasonably warm December weather (fingers crossed that it continues) so Trevor has been working on some outside projects. He reassembled the engine and the bus still runs. He also finished attaching the rack at the front of the bus that will store the kayaks and any other items that we find are too large to fit inside. We have had some small leaks that we can’t find the source of so Trevor has also been sealing the roof trying to keep the water out. The last big outdoor project will be to mount the water tanks underneath the bus for fresh water and gray water. We have two 46 gallon tanks that will be used for this. 

Inside we have been finalizing the placement of all the kitchen cabinetry and appliances. These will all need to be secured in some fashion so they don’t shift while we are on the road. Along with this we have been deciding exactly where all our AC and DC outlets will be needed. That way the wiring can finally be completed and Trevor can finally put the electrical on the completed list. 

With the completion of the wiring we can get the walls finished up. We want to use the 2inch styrofoam insulation on the bedroom walls to help with cooling if we decide to get an air conditioner for the baby. This will be covered with same white bead board we used in the front of the bus. Trevor also wants to frame in the wall to the utility closet so it will be able to support the AC electrical components. 

Almost everything we need has been purchased by now. We have gotten our water trough bathtub and a porta potty toilet. We are still hunting for a good deal on counter tops – I’m hoping Craigslist comes through with something. There are a few other items we also need but the end is insight and Christmas is around the corner :). 

Aurora Gets her 6 month shots January 27 so our tentative departure date in February 5. We applied for her passport and are getting all our ducks in a row for our Nicaragua return. Before we know it we will be home!


Trevor wiring the electrical
Water tanks
Bedroom lightswitch
Water wall- bathtub, washing machine, sink and refridgerator
Aurora loves to play in the bus
USB charger and outlet for the fridge
AC outlet and USB charger
Completed Kayak roof rack
Rack mounted to the bumper
Roof rack
The bus
A light to shine the way home


2 Comments Add yours

  1. Peta Kaplan says:

    So happy to find your blog and see what you guys are up to! I LOVE the equipped bus, what a fantastic idea and job well done! Are you driving all the way to Nicaragua from Oregon? Sounds like quite an adventure.

    One day we will be neighbors on Ometepe but in the meantime we are headed back to Asia soon…

    Abrazos y besos


    1. Thanks for checking out what we are up to. We are excited about the upcoming road trip and even more excited to get back home to Ometepe! We are heading out from Rhode Island hopefully the first week of Feb and hoping to check out some green building along the way. If you know any good projects, we’d love any suggestions.
      You guys also always seem to be up to something cool somewhere in the world. We look forward to catching up next time you are back on the island. In the meantime enjoy Asia!

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