Mangrovejack's 2012 VW Caddy Maxi Camper

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mangrovejack
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Engine size/power: 1.6 CR TDI (102bhp)
Location: Brisbane, QLD, Australia

Mangrovejack's 2012 VW Caddy Maxi Camper

Post by mangrovejack »

Hi Everybody,

Thought I'd start a build thread on my Caddy. It will ultimately be converted into a campervan. Getting a bunch of bits shipped and am waiting on that for the starting phase (stripping and sound deadening etc).

When we first picked it up (we live in Canberra and bought the Caddy from NSW). It was an data electricians van hence the Rola Shelving system in the back and the conduit carrier on the roof racks.
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Took off the roof rack, PVC pipe and interior shelving system.
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Started stripping the interior.
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Some factory sound deadener.
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And last update for now is fitted VW Tiguan alloy wheels with 215/65R16 Yokohama Geolander tyres. They just fit lock-to-lock!
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Got the car roadworthied and registered in Canberra with new plates the other day too.
Last edited by mangrovejack on Tue Mar 28, 2023 12:20 am, edited 1 time in total.
Katabolism
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Re: Mangrovejack's 2012 VW Caddy Maxi

Post by Katabolism »

Nice mate, looks like a good solid base
mangrovejack
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Joined: Wed Apr 13, 2022 1:26 am
Engine size/power: 1.6 CR TDI (102bhp)
Location: Brisbane, QLD, Australia

Re: Mangrovejack's 2012 VW Caddy Maxi

Post by mangrovejack »

Today's fun and games!

Butyl sound deadener, closed cell foam, mass loaded vinyl (and spray adhesive to hold it in place), degreaser and dismantling tools.
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Mostly spend dismantling/stripping the the back of the caddy and vacuuming and degreasing all the surfaces.

Also sprayed some fire rated polyurethane spray foam into the parts of the caddy I couldn't reach with normal sound deadening.
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Where I finished before it got too cold/dark outside. Slow going on the ribs. Plus bonus pic of the chief quality inspector at the centre console.
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mangrovejack
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Posts: 131
Joined: Wed Apr 13, 2022 1:26 am
Engine size/power: 1.6 CR TDI (102bhp)
Location: Brisbane, QLD, Australia

Re: Mangrovejack's 2012 VW Caddy Maxi

Post by mangrovejack »

More sound deadening progress. Got the back floor and wheel wells and some of the side walls done.

Slow going with all the ribs and curved surfaces!

I also added more fire rated spray foam into inaccessible areas.

I went for a test drive after doing all this and wow, what a difference it makes already! Can't wait for all the Caddy to be done.
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mangrovejack
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Posts: 131
Joined: Wed Apr 13, 2022 1:26 am
Engine size/power: 1.6 CR TDI (102bhp)
Location: Brisbane, QLD, Australia

Re: Mangrovejack's 2012 VW Caddy Maxi

Post by mangrovejack »

More sound deadening and insulation. It's making a massive difference for road noise when driving and with the closed cell foam added, the thermal transfer through the metal body is nearly non-existent.

Back "windows" sound deadened and thermally insulated:
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My little helper has a perfect spot on the dash to supervise!
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Sliding doors, sound deadening and thermally insulating. I will be putting full panels over the entire door and carpetting it later. Closing the doors now results in a more satisfying thunk, rather than a hollow sound.
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Other door
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BWH888
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Re: Mangrovejack's 2012 VW Caddy Maxi

Post by BWH888 »

Nice job, looks like your at the same stage as me. It’s quite time consuming but I can’t wait for the next test drive. The tinny noise was what bothered me most coming from a car to caddy. Hoping it’ll be more car like in sound.


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mangrovejack
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Joined: Wed Apr 13, 2022 1:26 am
Engine size/power: 1.6 CR TDI (102bhp)
Location: Brisbane, QLD, Australia

Re: Mangrovejack's 2012 VW Caddy Maxi

Post by mangrovejack »

Yeah I get what you mean about time consuming. I'm currently up to the front of the caddy now, so have stripped the front roof section back to metal and also stripped the passenger door ready for sound deadening. In my experience having these parts done will make a huge difference to road noise and a better sound system.
mangrovejack
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Re: Mangrovejack's 2012 VW Caddy Maxi

Post by mangrovejack »

More work over the weekend.

First up, my new headlight H4 bulbs came in, so replaced them. Huge difference in light quality. You can see how yellow the old headlight bulbs were in the photos. Next step is possibly a Stedi H4 LED light bulb upgrade as I have those on my other car and they work great.

These are the bulbs - Philips Racing Vision GT200 H4.
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Before the upgrade, very warm on the colour temperature range.
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After the upgrade, much cooler temperature.
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And you can definitely see the difference here.
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mangrovejack
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Re: Mangrovejack's 2012 VW Caddy Maxi

Post by mangrovejack »

Upgraded the stereo head unit to a double DIN Pioneer. The fascia kit finally arrived with fascia and all wiring. It's only temporarily installed until I run the reverse camera wiring, microphone and RCA out cables later, but it all works fine for now.

One weird thing I noticed was after hooking it all up (no cutting at all with the wiring kit) was the sound was heavily distorted at high volumes and extremely attenuated which mean I had to put the volume up to around 40 odd (out of a maximum of 50) to hear much. And then if you just went a little further the distortion was terrible. I figured that was a bit crap, but I'm amping the speakers anyway, so will bypass any speaker level output weirdness. Then I noticed with the wiring kit, I had plugged in an ISO to ISO cable with what looked to be inline resistors (its heatshrinked, so can't be 100% sure) on the speaker out line. Not even sure what that cable is for, so I removed it and just plugged in the HU speaker output to the VW adaptor and then all volume was restored and no distortion. So that was a bit weird, and the lack of any documentation on that cable didn't help things.

This is the wiring kit. Not shown is the Pioneer to ISO output harness.
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Installed.
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mangrovejack
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Re: Mangrovejack's 2012 VW Caddy Maxi

Post by mangrovejack »

Final post for the weekends update. Started doing the sound deadening on the doors. Wow was that annoying trying to get the inner door card out! I looked at the how-to, but there were a couple of missing steps I felt that would make life easier. I might go back and add my 2 cents to that post.

After finally getting the inner card out.
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I used some of this Septone spray on body deadener into the very bottom of the door where I couldn't put the buytl rubber stuff. I intend on using this same stuff inside the wheel wheels and underneath the caddy when I'm at that stage. It's not asphalt/tar based, so doesn't stink on hot days which is great.
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The bottom of the doors. Don't worry I didn't seal off the draining holes, I masked them up from underneath before spraying.
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Outer skin fully deadened.
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Thermal insulation layer added and aluminium tape used to cover all seams. Water can still run all over this surface and drain adequately, so I'm not worried about any condensation/rust/mould issues here.
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Started doing the inner skin too.
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I've re-installed this skin, but now need to sound deaden the plastic door card and install some foam to stop rattles between the door card and inner skin.
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Doc
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Re: Mangrovejack's 2012 VW Caddy Maxi

Post by Doc »

Nice work. The spond deadning looks great, bet the door shuts with a nice thud now!

The ISO to ISO on the speaker line is the "line out converter" which won't be necessary for you. Essentially it was "muting" the speaker level output to that suitable for an amplifier input, thus you had to crank it way up to get anything worthwhile out of the speakers.

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2013 Caddy with EA888 Gen3 2.0TSI DSG, Superplus MSP19 , Caddy4 rear lights, Polo GTI (mk7 style) steering wheel, Relentless Tuning front coilovers, Audi A6 S-Line front seats, Boxster fronts & GTI rear Brakes, 3D Colour Premium dash cluster, Caddy life arm rest, Motexion bulkhead, MIB head unit


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mangrovejack
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Re: Mangrovejack's 2012 VW Caddy Maxi

Post by mangrovejack »

Thanks Doc! Yep you betcha, the doors are not tinny anymore! Can't install the new speakers yet as I received the wrong VW 6.5" speaker adapter, but I'll bet they sound much better after this.

Thanks for the LOC info, yep definitely not needed, but good to know what it was actually for.
mangrovejack
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Re: Mangrovejack's 2012 VW Caddy Maxi

Post by mangrovejack »

Been a while since my last update, been busy with work, travelling and getting the house prepped for sale.

Got a few goodies ready to be installed.

Stedi ST4K 22" LED light bar
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Which will be installed on the front bumper (after I remove it and bolt a backing plate to the back of the bumper for additional support via this lightbar mount
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Got a 1500w Inverter and 30L drawer fridge/freezer
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Powered by initially this 100Ah Lithium leisure/house battery
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Monitoring to be done by this Renogy battery monitor
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USB input and 2 buttons to activate the LED lightbars
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Last but not least, installed a BlackVue DR900S 4K dashcam powered by the BlackVue Magic Pro off the leisure battery
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mangrovejack
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Joined: Wed Apr 13, 2022 1:26 am
Engine size/power: 1.6 CR TDI (102bhp)
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Re: Mangrovejack's 2012 VW Caddy Maxi

Post by mangrovejack »

Continued the left door
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Then started on the right door (much quicker since I now know how to take all the various parts apart quickly). This is the thermal insulation after applying sound deadening just like the other door
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Finished door with Morel 6.5" speaker installed
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Installed a black windscreen strip to block more of the sun out
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Added thermal insulation to the side doors
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Cut out 17mm plywood for the floor. Not permanently fixed yet, still need to route out roundovers on the back edge and side door edges before installing
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mangrovejack
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Location: Brisbane, QLD, Australia

Re: Mangrovejack's 2012 VW Caddy Maxi

Post by mangrovejack »

Stripped out most of the front ready for sound deadening and thermal insulation. First step was to squirt spray foam in all the gaps. Bloody messy work!
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Sound deadened drivers side
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And the passenger side
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Installed mass loaded vinyl sheets on top of the sound deadening
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Final layer of thermal insulation
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On drivers side, ran the front speaker cables, and RCAs to the head unit
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Factory jute and foam going back in
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And part of the factory rubber carpet going back in
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