Van Builder Stories: Big Bear Vans

a boy and a girl with a woman on top of a van

Van Builder Stories: Big Bear Vans

Buy or Sell Campers

Buy or Sell Campers

20 January 2023

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📍 Big Bear City, California, USA
📷 @bigbearvans
Building vans since: 2020

Vans that make the impossible, possible

Founded by Artur and Anna in 2020, Big Bear Vans designs custom-built vans with beds that will be ‘just right’ for Goldilocks and all three bears! With a focus on families, their unique vans feature innovative upgrades such as their signature electrical bed system, roof hammocks, roving cinemas, and extendable rear patio decks!

So Big Bear Vans, tell us where it all began...

Big Bear Vans is a camper van shop and team of professional van builders in Big Bear City, CA. So far, we’ve built out more than 30 custom camper vans since the company was founded by us – Artur and Anna – in 2020. Having traveled all around Europe with three kids in a trailer and lived in a sprintervan in California, it was a natural progression towards our passion! As vanlifers and full-time RV dwellers we know a lot about off grid tiny living, especially using the inner van space in a smart way. Anna was an ecologist in the past, and as mother of three curious kids, a skier and nature lover, we just believe that van travel is the best way to spend a weekend or holiday. It’s this passion for family adventures and exploration that helps us to the perfect layout solution for clients – making the impossible possible!

In 2020 we opened our first shop in San Diego. Then, in 2021, the company moved to Big Bear, CA into a new spacious shop. Big Bear is a beautiful tourist area and the workshop is in a beautiful pine tree forest, by a lake, and mountains with lots of trails. There really is no better place to observe all four seasons and get inspiration than from mother nature that surrounds our work space. Specializing in custom personalized builds, every build is unique and has its own story. Most of the camper vans we build are family layouts with an electric lift bed system and extra seats. Our mission is to help families – like ours – fulfill their vanlife dreams.

What's really unique about Big Bear Vans?

We put a lot of effort into building for our clients – to do things the way they want, and not the way it is easier for us. We do impossible, we do one of a kind, and we follow our client’s vision. That brings us to the level where we are really open to all possibilities and are learning constantly.

What's the most popular van you offer?

Santa Monica. It has the perfect layout for 4 people. Built in a 4×4 144 Sprinter van with a real tile shower and electric bed. It is similar to Revel, – another van we offer – but it gives you more comfort and style. The dinette under the electric bed transforms into a full size comfy bed, and the stylish interior mimics the European Hummer latest model of Sprinter camper van.



What’s your favorite layout, and why?

The best layout is an electric elevating bed over the dinette area that transforms into an additional bed.

What’s your favorite van base to build from, and why?

Ford Transit 148 wheelbase high roof eco boost. The high, wide interior gives maximum options for family friendly layouts. You can even walk underneath the electric bed!

Help us end the eternal debate: which is the best shower format, and why? No shower...outside shower...pop-up shower...fixed shower...

Pop-up inside shower plus outside shower combo is the best solution for us, to maximize storage space and yet be able to shower in any weather situation inside.

Let's cut the crap, give us your top toilet recommendation, and tell us why!

Portable toilet strictly for number 1 only and plastic bags for number 2. Definitely separating liquids and solids. Using the toilet only for emergencies or for kids.

Where’s the best vanlife destination?

Yosemite NP, CA.

What's your message to people just starting out or thinking about getting into vanlife?

Get your camper van, get your freedom from hotels and bookings and just hit the road! See you there!

Why go pro, rather than fly solo on a conversion?

A professional team like ours will be always here for you to resolve any issues, fix things or upgrade your van if you want to make changes to fit your changing travel dynamic.

What’s next? What are your dreams for your business?

We plan to sell components too, beautiful furniture for camper vans.

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