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Installing bunk beds in a motorhome


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We are looking at buying our first motorhome but we are struggling to find a layout that we want within our budget, which is around £20,000.


We really like the Wildax Solaris and the Rapido/Dreamer Family Van, but these are both new models and out of our price range.


We would like a motorhome with bunk beds and a double but it seems that these are mostly alcove/Luton over cab models and we would prefer a low profile, or a panel van conversion or an older A-Class.


Is it possible to remove a fixed double bed and replace it with a pair of bunk beds?


Has anyone done this or can recommend a company that can carry this out?


Alternatively, can someone please recommend a suitable model within our budget.


Many thanks!

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Hi, Happy New and welcome to the madhouse world of motorhomes!


Wildax are a very flexible converter and maybe they will be able to advise, or even provide a kit for one of their own conversions?


If you Google 'caravan bunk bed kit' lots of ideas come up.

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From what you have said, I presume you are looking for a van which will accommodate 2 adults in a double bed and 2 children in a bunk arrangement.


Hymer do an A class van with a drop down double bed at the front and bunks at the rear. It's a Hymer B class 524 and is 6.4m long, manufactured up to 2006, so should be in your price range. It was available in 2 variants, one with the bunks at the back and the other with a garage space at the back.


The rear bunk arrangement is also very popular in French and Italian vans.


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I think you have more chance of finding the Holy Grail than a motorhome unless you are able to make compromises. Sorry.


In your price range, family motorhomes will have a luton and very few will have bunk beds. Some of the continental vans will, such as those from Italy, but they were never imported in great numbers and will still have lutons. I would rule out a Panel Van Conversion if there are four of you because the space will be too tight. You also have to be careful of the loading margin in many motorhomes for a family of four unless you can drive a vehicle weighing more than 3,500kg.


If you haven't already done so, I'd trawl the internet and see what is on offer in your price range. You should be able to find a clean and tidy van. Focus on what you can have, not what you want. It's then a question of whether what is available suits your needs. Read the Out&About Live guides and see what is advertised for sale on the web pages if you haven't already.


I seem to recall something in a recent MMM magazine that somebody emailed MMM for advice on a motorhome to meet their needs. It seems the response from MMM was well received so you might try this approach. Or am I dreaming? I can't find the mag now.


Hambilton Engineering near Preston have experience in changing the layouts of Hymers. However, it will never be a cheap conversion because of the structural issues. That will eat into your budget.


The alternative, which will meet most of your needs, is a caravan and suitable tow car. That would be my choice.



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Modifying is never going to be a cheap option so  I would 'guess' it would be beyond the realms of possibility for you to go that route.  Likewise finding a layout that has bunks 'and' a double bed whilst avoiding the overcab is highly unlikely for your budget assuming of course that there is such a layout out there.  Your budget probably excludes low profile models.

However here's one that has all you are looking for and within budget...

Assuming you require bunks and a double there will be four of you travelling I would suggest a panel conversion will be very cramped for unless you like real close proximity living.  The Solaris looks nice but once you consider what you 'need' in terms of bedding, clothing, kids toys, bikes ...food...drinks etc there really is not a lot of space in it for four in any degree of comfortable space.  
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Thank you very much for your helpful response and to Roger for tracking down a layout within my budget, i agree that he seems to have found the Holy Grail in the Ecovip 200i which matches both my layout and my budget. Both my husband and I have Class C1 driving licences, to that's not a problem.


The Hymer B524 with the rear twin bunks would fit the bill too. Feeling inspired now that I can buy an affordable motorhome!


We have hired a Panel Van Conversion for a week in the summer, together with an drive-away awning, so it will be interesting to see how that works out space wise, with the four of us, plus a small dog. I think that we may well find it a bit of a tight fit, but it will be an interesting experience.


We have also booked a Hymer for a week. I couldn't find one to hire with bunk beds, so it is a Hymer S670, LHD.


We hired a low profile coachbuilt last year and loved it, though again it didn't have bunk beds; the layout was a rear French bed and drop down double bed. It was a Roller Team, can't remember the model.


Previously we hired a caravan, but absolutely loathed towing it.


So we have been carefully exploring all our options!

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