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Installing Van Bulkhead In Car Version Of Berlingo
#1
I'm currently looking for a van for my new business, as I don't have much cash I can't spend much more than £1500 on a van before any extras. Most vans at this price point are usually trashed, looks dreadful and dented to hell. I just discovered the car version is much cheaper and tend to be in a much better condition so I have an insane crazy idea of converting a car to a van, the body shape is the same anyway. I've done some research into the topic - side windows; load floor; interior; legal paperwork, etc - I have a solution for everything apart from the bulkhead. I can buy a steel bulkhead cheaply on eBay, but I'm not certain whether the car version has the same holes as the van to fit the bulkhead? I'm aware I'll have to cut/remove trim to fit, I have no problem with this, but and I'm hoping someone here would know about the fitting holes?

I'm not definitely going to do this, I'm aware getting a van is easier than converting a car, but I want to explore all my options. Even if I get a van, I still need to do a lot of work anyway - install bulkhead, shelving, securing rear windows of which converting a car to van will cover these as well.

Cheers!
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#2
Just make a wooden bulkhead, much easier and cheaper and more versatile.
Mar 2002 Berlingo Multispace Forte 1.9D 166,000 miles
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  • Eddles
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#3
Cheers for response!  This scares the bejesus out of me though....

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JcyM8EpILxo
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#4
Having a closer look, it looks like the bottom of the bulkhead bolts onto the lip of the load floor which obviously isn't present in the car version so a custom wooden one is the only way forward.

Pic of drivers side cage bolted to the load floor lip.
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#5
I bought a berlingo car version for exactly the same reason, most of the van versions in my budget were well hammered.
I've considered fitting some sort of bulkhead and the best way to tackle this would be a custom ply one. If you are worried about being flattened by your rear load in an accident, maybe fit a couple of steel bars or fit a seat bulkhead, I'm sure you could pick a s/h one up from a scrappy on ebay.
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  • Eddles
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#6
That crash test didn't have any seats in it which made it a lot worse than it would have been.

Plenty of brackets and self tappers (or nuts/bolts/washers if possible or even get someone to weld some brackets on) will help. I've sandwiched metal mesh fencing between ply to reinforce on other applications (to make it sledge hammer proof - I live in Merseyside).
Mar 2002 Berlingo Multispace Forte 1.9D 166,000 miles
[-] The following 1 user says Thank You to ddb for this post:
  • Eddles
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#7
(14-03-2015, 12:54 PM)ddb Wrote:  That crash test didn't have any seats in it which made it a lot worse than it would have been.

Ah that's reassuring then. Cheers!

Quote:I've sandwiched metal mesh fencing between ply to reinforce on other applications.

That's an interesting idea. How thick was the ply if you don't mind me asking?

Thanks!
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#8
It was a different application, it was a wall of a building, I think it was 18mm ply on the outside and thinner stuff on the inside, it was screwed together in many places, studded round the circumference on the inside and vertical studding every 12 inches or so. I've also done similar in interior plasterboard walls with just chickwire to slow down an opportunist.
Mar 2002 Berlingo Multispace Forte 1.9D 166,000 miles
[-] The following 1 user says Thank You to ddb for this post:
  • Eddles
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#9
(13-03-2015, 11:38 PM)Eddles Wrote:  I'm currently looking for a van for my new business, as I don't have much cash I can't spend much more than £1500 on a van before any extras.  Most vans at this price point are usually trashed, looks dreadful and dented to hell.  I just discovered the car version is much cheaper and tend to be in a much better condition so I have an insane crazy idea of converting a car to a van, the body shape is the same anyway.  I've done some research into the topic - side windows; load floor; interior; legal paperwork, etc - I have a solution for everything apart from the bulkhead. I can buy a steel bulkhead cheaply on eBay, but I'm not certain whether the car version has the same holes as the van to fit the bulkhead?  I'm aware I'll have to cut/remove trim to fit, I have no problem with this, but and I'm hoping someone here would know about the fitting holes?

I'm not definitely going to do this, I'm aware getting a van is easier than converting a car, but I want to explore all my options.  Even if I get a van, I still need to do a lot of work anyway - install bulkhead, shelving, securing rear windows of which converting a car to van will cover these as well.

Cheers!

I looked round local breakers but never found a full bulkhead & full steel bulkheads where over £200 new so i went to b&q an paid £11.60 for a 8x4 sheet of 18mm mdf. Utilizing the bars fitted behind a vans drivers seat for added strength my bulkhead spits horizontally to facilitate the angle of the seats for the lower half and is secured with some strong steel brackets where necessary, finished in a black chalkboard paint makes it look the part too , was even able to create a locking hinged access over the passenger seat for them longer items. Even had enough mdf left over for a custom shelf unit opposite the side door, was tricky getting the cuts right around roof space an side door but well worth the effort on the saving. I cannot stress enough about the importance of the security of all fixing points though , if in-doubt take a look at some factory fitted ones.
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  • Eddles
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