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Mountain Bluebird the Overlanding Camper Van to be on display at Overland Expo Pacific Northwest!

Updated: Oct 18, 2022

The full featured, overlanding camper van with hydronic heating, the best bike garage that supports up to six bikes with wheels on, recovery points and winch, compressed air system, trail armor including rock sliders and skid plates, electrically lifting queen bed, large roof deck and slide out rear deck and so much more will be on display as a showcase overlanding camping vehicle at Overland Expo Pacific Northwest July 8th thru 11th in Redmond, Oregon. #overlandexpoPNW

Come visit with me and I'll give you a full tour of MountainBluebird the overlanding camper van as well as see other great expedition vehicles and campers at Overland Expo.

Here is a summary of the many, many features of this amazing custom-built expedition camper:

Fully Factory Optioned four-wheel drive with push-button low-range

  • Heated windscreen, heated front seats on factory swivels, auto-on HID headlights, fog lights, auto-wipers and nearly every possible factory option, additional air bags and safety systems

  • 4-wheel drive with low-range; push-button selectable

  • Factory D5 hydronic engine heater and auxiliary heater connections, variable idle control

  • Factory auxiliary battery, powers stereo and exterior lighting keeping dedicated starter battery

  • Heated rear windows with wipers; trailer wiring and hitch

Full Featured Four Passenger long-distance remote travels in comfort

  • Carries four passengers in front-facing three-point seat belted comfort seats

  • AC and DC/USB power ports accessible from any location (over 20 plugs for each)

  • No wood to rot or steel to rust all-aluminum & HDPE cabinetry bolted to twelve factory floor anchors

  • All marine-grade materials for wall panels, coverings, insulation, cabinetry, electronics…

  • Super insulated for noise and thermal comfort, including front cabin with all dash panels and flooring removed and several layers and types of insulation added

  • Carries four to six bikes inside with wheels on, easy roll in and out, skis or watercraft while containing mud & water within bike tray/500#-capable five-foot slide out rear deck

  • Queen bed that is always ready and electrically raises and lowers to optimize cargo area

  • Systems support two people for weeks of unsupported travels, including hot showers, food, drinking water, energy, etc. Have completed extended travels for three weeks without water or food replenishment and ability to drive >800 miles per fill-up

  • Automatic charging from sun or van motor with single fuel management

  • Lots of storage spaces for clothing, food, kitchen supplies, bikes, etc.

  • Walls made of lightweight and strong plastic panels and vehicle specific insulation prevent absorption of odors and water, reduce thermal and noise transfer, and are self-extinguishing fire-safe materials

  • Installed two CR Lawrence vent windows and MaxxFan

The “House” insulated for all extremes, built to endure any extreme

  • Three layers of different insulation on walls, floor and ceiling for super-insulated shell that has very minimal connections to exterior walls

  • MaxxFan 7500 10-speed push/pull and auto on by temp w/remote and shade w/LEDs

  • Slide-out table for outside cooking, dinning or drinks

  • Queen bed that raises and lowers 36” electronically and self-levels to provide additional garage head room height or comfort while adjusting to pre-programmed heights based upon items in bike garage; bed lifts support 1,600 pounds with four preset levels

  • Pull out step to bed with timed off night light for easy access into bed

  • Several grab handles and towel bars that also act as grab handles

  • All cabinetry made of custom cut structural aluminum with stainless connectors and panels from various plastics so that water and smells are not absorbed, as well as all materials meet fire-spread and prevent any development of mold, are easy to clean and durable from paws to shoes and gear loading and storage

  • Cabinets are bolted to the vehicle floor frame utilizing twelve factory anchor points rated to over 1,000 pounds each avoiding screws into walls, floor or ceiling which reduces thermal transfer and ensures rigidity of cabinets while “floating” to allow for wall and ceiling movement

  • Two-person passenger bench seat with rated three-point seatbelts rotates between forward-facing driving position to camping position with reclining seats & armrests

Kitchen with induction stove, microwave and hot & cold water

  • Induction stove in hold-open drawer provides more counter space and can be placed on exterior pull out table or elsewhere and microwave with turntable for quick meal prep

  • Outdoor/indoor accessible mounted bottle openers and drawer storage

  • Recessed stainless sink with soap dispenser in large butcher-block countertop; hot & cold water, and retractable sprayer that extends outside slider for outside wash downs

  • Mirror (non-glass) and dry-erase board

  • Multiple drawers for food and utensils, spice rack, dishtowel and paper towel racks

  • Large 7 cubic-ft Vitrifrigo fridge with pull freezer drawer on independent cooling systems

  • Separate kitchen lighting under cabinet and within spice racks

  • Fold-down and slide out dinning table for all four seating positions

Bike Garage carries up to six bikes with all wheels on and skis and water gear

  • 4’x6’ bike drawer with water-tight stainless tray for water and mud containment with four mounted 1Up bike trays for roll in/out support of bikes with wheels on, lockable open, ski carrier, 500-pound capacity--can walk thru from camper and rear doors

  • Compressed air connections, bottle opener, AC outlets on each side, stereo speakers, indoor and exterior area lighting, gear netting

  • A dozen USB power connections for charging bike computers, lights, shifters & other gear

  • Outdoor hot & cold shower/bike washdown, lighting accessible from front or rear

  • L-track along walls and rear of cabinets with connections for tie downs and other items

  • Under van night lighting and service lighting

Plumbing - 40 gallons of fresh water capacity

  • Internal shower drawer stows away when not in use and exterior showers at rear

  • Cassette toilet with dual toilet paper dispensers on drawer so stowed when not in use

  • Kitchen/bathroom sink with hot and cold water and soap dispenser and hot water recirculation to speed time of hot water to sink

  • 40 gallons of fresh water capacity in four connected tanks each with drain valves

  • All plumbing from water tanks internal to vehicle to reduce freezing and thermal loss

  • Shower and sink gravity drain as well as pumped via Whale IC grey discharge pump which automatically or manually turns on to pump any rising grey waste water

  • 15 gallon grey water tank has hidden high overflow and outside vent, as well as electronic drain for emptying where appropriate via cabin switch

  • All fresh water tanks internally vented prevents ingress of smells and contamination

  • Shurflo pressure water pump activated by switch or pressure, system pressure gauge and Shurflo accumulator to assist in maintaining pressure

  • Internal water fill keeps water clean & prevents freezing & tampering, filtered thru large high-quality filter

  • Independent ultra-sonic water level sensors for each tank reduce maintenance

Heating - dual zone hydronic

  • Hydronic heating with dual fan coils front and rear with independent & variable speed fan control

  • Dedicated Espar D5 and EasyStart thermostat with redundant factory heater heats all-weather heating loop and heat exchanger for potable hot water. Heating loop and insulated tank heated electronically when connected to shore power, heated by engine once engine temp above 150F, or heated by D5 fueled by vehicle fuel tank provides for one fuel to fill; heat is kept out of cabin except when in heating mode by electronic three-way valve and dedicated heating loop pump

  • Six temperature sensors monitor internal, external and heating and water system temps

Electrical - 3000 watt AC power, 400 Amp-hours lithium, 350 watts solar & battery redundancy

  • Victron 3,000 watt continuous (6,000 watt peak) high-efficiency true sine wave inverter

  • Victron Color Control, MPPT solar controller, BMV and inverter monitored via Wi-Fi

  • 350-watt solar panel recessed into roof rack

  • 100 amp-hr auxiliary battery powers stereo system, air compressor and exterior lighting

  • Four 100 amp-hr Battle Born lithium batteries divided into dual circuits with integrated BMS and separate battery status and temperature monitoring

  • Multiple indicator lights for full tanks, low battery, high battery temp, low exterior temp, heater on, awning powered, grey water tank full and others

  • Can manually separate or combine any combination of House, Auxiliary and Starter batteries via BlueSea battery switches; Starter battery auto-separates to ensure fully charged and dedicated Starter battery

  • Six GFCI protected 120 VAC circuits via BlueSea circuit panel with dedicated circuits for microwave, stove, hidden exterior outlet and internal circuits for each side and rear

  • Additional AC circuit powers hot water heating from shore power

  • Kassmaul 20-amp auto-eject shore power ejects cord when starting vehicle, discreetly located in body color and connects to Blue Sea ELCI circuit protection panel

  • Five BlueSea Weatherdeck switched fuse panels, fourteen BlueSea fuse panels and one custom main fuse panel divided between six electrical cabinets to reduce wire runs, provide easy access to local power system, and separate loads to specific power sources

  • Five BlueSea Contour switch panels & several other switches for lighting, pumps, heating, tank empty & other functions

  • Over 20 interior and eight exterior lighting circuits for light where needed including three-zone illuminated and dimmable frosted ceiling

  • Replacement of all factory speakers and stereo with two amplifiers, high-quality discreet speakers, subwoofer in custom hidden mount, Bluetooth, GPS, back up camera and wired connections, as well as half a dozen USB outlets in dash

  • System monitoring and voltage monitoring of all three battery systems and battery capacity of the house and auxiliary battery systems

  • Over two-dozen USB outlets and ten AC outlets provides ease of connecting loads

  • Electrical cabinet also keeps spare fuses and other tools; electrical cabinet task lighting

Lighting with surround lighting and offroad driving lighting in all directions

  • Front and rear full “skylight” illuminated and dimmable ceiling lighting

  • Additional lighting for walkway, on steps and entries, and roof rack: front, rear and sides

  • Floor lighting for each door opening and reading lights for bed and seating

  • Six BlueSea dimming circuits with timed off function for undercabinet, ceiling, awning and step lights

  • Internal 120-degree Rigid flood lights for rear door/bike garage, as well as additional exterior lighting with doors open

  • “Night lighting” circuit with six distributed small down lights

  • Many dimmable reading lights and lights inside electrical cabinets and other points


  • Seating for four, all in three-point seat belts, reading lights for each passenger

  • Fold-down, slide-out table for four, self-supporting and out of the way when not in use

  • Rear passenger seat independently reclines with arm rests, seat storage, and rotates from facing forward to facing out slider

  • Multiple stretch bungie storage locations for maps, books and other items and storage shelves, including separate shoe drawer at slider door

  • Seamless flooring, near seamless wall panels and water-resistant materials

  • Compressed air system with dual Viair compressors and 2.5-gallon and 5-gallon tanks, pressure regulator, water separator and quick connect ports at front and rear of vehicle with filtered air intakes

  • Nearly all wiring and plumbing internal to vehicle yet accessible for repairs and changes

  • Front and rear HalGuard clean agent fire extinguishers

  • Nest smoke and CO2 detector with wifi alarming

  • OLED Temperature monitors for outside, inside, heating system, hot water

Exterior and Off-Road Upgrades for long-distance and technical terrain Durability

  • Van Compass “stage 3” suspension upgrade with larger-than-stock BFG K02 tires

  • Van Compass rock sliders down each side designed for lifting the vehicle, engine, transmission & transfer case skid plates, and rear step skid plate

  • Custom Aluminess roof rack/roof deck with recessed 340 watt solar panel, mounted MaxxTrax, tie downs and Custom fabricated front fairing improves aerodynamics

  • Owl Designs rear door spare tire (full size) carrier and ladder with recovery tool box

  • Agile Off Road 28-gallon auxiliary fuel tank for >800 mile total range with single fuel fill

  • Van Compass hidden winch mount with 3/4” recovery points, 12,000# winch with synthetic rope & Factor 55 flat lead and integrated winch light within factory bumper cover on have have recovered many others

  • KC HiLites Pro6 7-light bar for long-distance forward lighting, Rigid Designs wide/driving LED light bar for wide & fill lighting, and KC HiLites side and rear scene and off-road lighting for surround lighting, each with tree-branch protectors

  • Dual Viair air compressors and dual tanks (4.5 gallons total) with 150 psi connections front, rear, garage and engine compartment and pressure-regulated outlets

  • Black painted grille, lower rocker panels and Mercedes badges

  • Terrawagen hood protector and front wheel arch protectors

  • 13’ powered and self-supporting Dometic case awning with wind sensor and dimmable lighting extends 8 feet with the push of a button and auto-closes in high-wind; tree-branch aero-protector

  • Dual PIAA air horns replaced factory pathetic horns

  • Keyless keypad unlocking and locking

  • Recovery shovel mounted under hood

Cab Comfort, Communications and Driving Accessories

  • Dash voltage monitoring of all three batteries; lighted compass; exterior temp display

  • CB and HAM radios with weather bands and GPS; roof rack antennas with dedicated ground plane connection; upgraded factory stereo antenna

  • Upgraded stereo with two amplifiers, CD player, Bluetooth, video capability, 10” subwoofer on custom underseat mount, tweeters, upsized high quality front and rear speaker pairs; front and rear cameras

  • Garmin Overland on ProClip mount, ProClip mount for phone with wireless charging, ProClip and custom mounts for lighted compass, HAM radio and engine monitor

  • Window curtains, including sheer and blackout on all windows

  • Cabinet above rear doors/bed with storage space, power connections and lighting

  • Front headliner soft shelf and supporting curtain structure

  • Temperature controlled ventilation for dash cubby, Rosen visor, ability to shade driver from sun at side using sheer curtains

  • Much much more

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