A great aspect of van life is meeting the people that make up this vibrant community. At Havelock Wool, we are fortunate to do it every day. And as our business broadens out into the professional van upfitter world, we’ve been lucky to meet and learn from the best pros out there. We recently caught up with Abbee Hoyt from Salt Vans. Her company, based out of Portland, Maine makes fully loaded, amazingly capable, and beautifully designed high-roof Mercedes Sprinter Vans.
Your vans are built to be fully off-grid. What does that mean?
Our vans come standard with an additional 12 Volt 160 Amp alternator, giving owners peace of mind with a dedicated charging station to carry the additional accessory load. It means you’re never left completely reliant on sunshine or shore power to fill your battery banks. For those folks who’d rather not ever tap into the second alternator, we do offer solar, and of course, the shore power is there when you need it. Our goal is simple, we want people to escape to their adventure with ease.
Can you tell us what makes Salt Vans different?
In addition to the premium features and craftsmanship that come standard on our vans, one key element that we’re focused on is educating soon-to-be van owners about exploring responsibly. That means working with like-minded individuals and vendors committed to respecting and protecting our wildlife and natural resources. Additionally, we recently launched our One For Good campaign, allowing our customers to select from a number of organizations from across the country, focused on a variety of initiatives. In our efforts, we hope to work together toward the goal of ecological, societal, and environmental sustainability.
For folks considering upfitting their own van, what advice would you give?
Do your research and ask questions. The van life community is filled with a lot of great people eager to share their experiences. We learn a lot from one another. If you’re hiring a conversion company make sure you feel good about their process and communication style. It’s a big investment and feeling like you’re working with the right team is critical. Have fun and enjoy the process!
How does using Havelock Wool fit into your overall build philosophy?
Havelock Wool encompasses everything we believe in when it comes to our builds, that the foundation and materials used are key. Vans are tiny spaces where many of us are spending several weeks, months, or in some cases living full-time. Havelock Wool’s commitment to optimizing air quality, absorbing moisture, while adding a sound barrier, makes it the ideal healthy alternative to high-performance insulation.
Favorite place(s) to travel?
Oh wow, that’s a tough one — admittedly I have been in a long love affair with both coasts. Big Sur is one of my favorite go-to spots. Back East, the rugged coast here in Maine, particularly some secret hideaways up near Acadia National Park, are truly magical.
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