4x4 ambulance camper conversion

Ambulance Camper Conversion – Phase 1

In the beginning…

4x4 ambulance camper conversion
Before Conversion

Ever wonder what an ambulance camper conversion would look like?  Well, stick around & we’ll be glad to show you ours!  In January 2018, we purchased a 1999 Ford E450 7.3l ex-ambulance from a local fire department.  It only had 114,000 miles on it & the engine alone was worth the price we paid for the entire ambulance.  It came with inside & outside cabinetry galore, lighting, an inverter, four batteries, insulated walls, enough wiring to wrap around our house several times, & a box on the back that will withstand a roll-over.

Ambulance Box Interior
Interior of the ambulance box

The necessities

What the ambulance didn’t come with, hence the need for a build series:

  • 4-wheel drive: we plan on boondocking on BLM land which in some cases can be difficult to maneuver with a 2-wheel drive
    Transfer Case 4x4 Conversion
    Transfer Case for 4×4 Conversion
  • 6″ lift: if we’re going off road, we need more clearance
  • 35″ tires: because you can’t have 27″ tires on a lifted ambulance, that just wouldn’t look right
  • Queen size sofa bed: we’re downsizing from a California King, but due to Jeremy’s height, a queen is as small as we can go
  • Water tank: we’re thinking of putting it in an outside cabinet on the driver’s side, but we’ll need to relocate the inverter & lots of wiring
  • Sink: must fit a pot from a 3 quart Instant Pot
  • Water purification system: any suggestions?

Currently in progress

  • Gearing: the ambulance came with 4.10 gears, which we’re keeping, so we’ll have to change the 4.88’s in the Dana 60 axle that we purchased to replace the front axle
    4x4 Dana 60 Ambulance Camper Conversion
    Dana 60 Axle for 4×4 Conversion
  • Serpentine belt: replaced
  • Fuel bowl: rebuilt
  • Fuel Bowl Rebuild
    Fuel Bowl Rebuilt
  • Turbo wheel: upgraded
    Turbo Wheel Upgrade
      Turbo Wheel Upgraded
  • Beveled up-pipes: en route
  • Sofa bed: temporary plywood folding bed set up to enjoy camping until an aluminum sliding frame is built- futon mattress coming soon
    Sofa Bed
    Temporary Sofa Bed
  • Flooring: linoleum, wall covering, & adhesive removed- need to fill in holes, sand the floors, lay new flooring & put up new wall covering

Flooring Linoleum Ambulance Camper Conversion

    Linoleum Removed

We still have a long way to go, but we’re excited to be learning during this process!  I’m thankful that we’re not on a time crunch to get this done.  We’ve got several years to complete the ambulance, get everything sold, & hit the road!

The next post in the build thread is installing the six inch lift: Ambulance Camper Conversion Phase 2 Ujoint Offroad DIY Six Inch Lift.

If you have any comments or suggestions, we’d sincerely appreciate them!  Any ideas on easier or more efficient ways to do things are more than welcome!

4 thoughts on “Ambulance Camper Conversion – Phase 1”

  1. Avatar

    For off-grid water filtration, check out Berkey water filters. They will turn any water into clean and pure potable water. They are pricey, but you can buy the filter cartridges to use in two 5-gallon food grade buckets, for a DIY that is VERY affordable. I look forward to your build-out. This year, I spent 5 months working part-time on the conversion of a 7×16 cargo trailer into a fully self-contained RV TT (7×14 living space + garage). So I can identify with radical down sizing.

    Do you plan to start a YouTube channel?

    God bless…

    1. Jeremy & Sandy

      We’ve seen Berkey water filters in other builds and they’re definitely being considered! The space that they take up on the counter was my biggest concern. I didn’t know that you could use the filter cartridges in buckets… Hmmm. Thanks for that option!

      We do plan to start a YouTube channel. We’ve got one set up that should have a link on the bottom of our web page, but we haven’t taken the leap to start creating content yet. If you want to subscribe, please feel free to do so! You’ll be one of the first to catch our videos from the beginning! What about you? Do you have a YouTube channel? If so, I’d love to see your build videos.

      May God bless you abundantly,

  2. Avatar

    I have 4 or 5 old ambulances repossessed. They might be useful for parts or core for rebuild. Let me know if anyone is interested.
    Thanks, Bob (bspears@fsbbrownsboro.com)

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