NV200: Gas locker

Click for: NV200 Campervan build index, Also all Necessary tools used. Full conversion spec here. All photos taken during build

The gas locker will fit in the rear offside corner.  And, as usual, its very tight!  And very awkward.

Its built so the rear offside van air vent is kept clear for van ventilation, so is fully stand alone and can take a calor 3.9kg propane cylinder and we have a 30mb bulkhead fixed regulator with pigtail and 8mm copper pipe out.  We also have a gas pressure gauge that may help tell us when the bottle runs out, but also its to ensure we know of any leaks as its a total DIY install!

For safety, the bottle will be strapped in the locker, and also via a strap to a convenient NV200 tie-down hook – so in the event of accident the bottle won’t fly around.  Also the locker is at “van floor” level, not the raised floor, so can’t slide forward.

The locker has a 70mm lip, sealed on sides and bottom, and has a 50mm drop vent straight out.  The copper pipe exit is sealed.  So any gas leakage will safely escape the van.

The rear door opens “down” so hinges/catches don’t foul the bottle (as its very tight!)

As the bottle should be turned off for travel, we have made a small door in the locker top which can be accessed when the rear door is closed and the bike rack is on.

The locker is strong enough to support the rear bulkhead, and as this is offset, it gives a void between the bulkhead and the rear doors suitable for storing the table (maybe/maybe not!) and blinds (as well as concealing access to the top of the locker.  The vent at the top of the locker does NOT go into the gas locker, but next to it which is just a small void joining the van ventilation in the bottom corner, so this is for “fresh air” in the habitation area.

(There is also a 50mm gas drop vent in the floor under where the hob will be (actually under the fridge), and there will be a stop cock somewhere).

This is the first time I’ve made a locker door and, as usual, its 100x harder than expected!  That’s why I did these first, to practice before anything can be seen!

The 8mm copper gas pipe goes out and is secured (and not knockable) and comes through the middle bulkhead to a stop-cock ready for connecting to the hob.


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11 thoughts on “NV200: Gas locker”

  1. Hi!! Hopefully my last question to finish the project. I can see your gas pipe is running through the cupboard. Did you use any kind of housing/trunking to protect the pipe? Is it going through the batteries ‘box’ or above it? Thank you!

    1. No – think I used a grommet to get it through the locker, but then its just loose and fixed with clips, but is bare. It does go through the battery area and I see no problem with that – it isn’t in a place where it can be damaged. I would suggest a pressure dial on the gas bottle (easy way to know if there is a leak!) and also gas-drop vent in the locker and 50mm+ bottom lip – and seal locker with sealant so any escaped gas can’t “flow” anywhere hidden – except out through the floor.

      1. Hi Ryan,

        I noticed a significant drop during the first night. Needle dropped nearly 10%. However I can’t smell any leak not even in the gas locker. Any suggestions? I tested all the compression fittings and I can’t see anything wrong.

        1. With bottle “off” and appliances off?
          10% need drop in 24hrs *apparently* is nothing to worry about. On our old pro-installed system my needle did similar, and they said something like “if it drops in <1hr worry, but drops to zero overnight, don't worry".
          Mine drops a bit and drops to zero over a week or so (guessing, not checked).

          1. Bottle is ‘on’ appliances are ‘off’
            They told me the needle might go down and up depending on the weather temperature.
            Thank you for your reply

        2. That is correct, especially as the bottle gets emptier. Esp at this time of year, temp drops overnight and need drops, as it is a pressure gauge and heat/pressure are related
          For leak detection which is what I was on about, leave bottle off and appliances isolated. Then the gauge will still be pressurised, and any big drop will show a leak between bottle and appliances (e.g. regulator & pipework). If drop is minimal after 24 hrs, turn each appliance isolator back on – and after 24hrs you can see if an appliance is leaking.
          But with bottle open you won’t spot a leak as the pressure will be topped back up by bottle (unless leak is major and bottle empties!)

  2. Good luck with your new project! We plan to travel to Europe for a few months and we have just realised that we can’t recharge calor outside the UK. Do you think we can just use the campingaz 2.75 bottle with the same setup?

    1. Yeah, had Gaslow on the other van (but 6kg size, didn’t know they did smaller). But with solar/compressor fridge (which is free power due to solar, and easier venting for the location I want); and diesel heating, gas usage is actually quite small. A 6kg calor will last 3+ months for just cooking and water, and hence gaslow not really needed…. Depends on usage – if you have gas fridge or heating, gaslow is a no brainer!. Have to say, if I ever do need to add refillable gas, converting calor to gaslow is trivial – though I’d probably go Gas-it and a bigger underslung tank….

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