Product Release

Product Release Announcement:

We are pleased to announce the
Beta release of the long-awaited

DIY Paneling Kits!

for Sprinter and Transit High Roof Platforms

The Process:

Bringing a product from something that we professionally install in our shop, to an online product that can be flat pack shipped, and easily installed by a DIY customer, is no small task.  Add to that our commitment to very high standards of quality and attention to detail, this is sometimes a very lengthy process.  This has certainly been true in the case of paneling kits.

Beta Release

Though issues are few and far between, we want our customers to know that the product is still relatively new, and there may be some minor improvements pending to things like product descriptions/images, packing lists, instructions, etc…  Any issues that arise will be resolved quickly, and your feedback and suggestions are invaluable to this stage of the process.

Much More To Follow

2024 will be a breakthrough year for Roost’s DIY product line.  In the coming months we expect to be able to offer the following Roost Vans products to the DIY Market:


  • Electrical solutions including power panel, wiring kit, diagrams, and enclosure(s).
  • Pre-cut Insulation & sound deadening kits.
  • Dinette bed system   (Yes, a 3rd unique bed design option for DIY installers!).
  • Additional kitchen cabinet variations, including compact designs for various applications.
  • Expansion to new platforms (hopefully soon to include Promaster, Transit Mid Roof, and/or Sprinter Low Roof).

Navigating the Call of Nature: Toilets

Hey there, fellow adventurers! Today, let’s dive into a topic that’s both a necessity and a challenge when you’re on the road: bathroom business in your van. We all know the deal – when nature calls, you have to answer. Doing so in a compact space like a van can be, well, a bit tricky, to say the least.

At Roost Vans, we understand the importance of accommodating families and their unique needs on the road. Our design philosophy centers around simplicity and practicality. We like to ensure that your adventure are memorable for all the right reasons. So, what’s our take on the whole “toilet in the van” situation? Let’s spill the beans.

The Smell Factor: It’s All About the Diet (and Kids!)

First things first, let’s address the elephant in the van – the smell. Admit it, no one enjoys dealing with unpleasant odors, especially in confined spaces. Your diet plays a significant role here. A healthy diet might mitigate the situation, but let’s face it, it’s not going to smell like roses. That’s where our experience as parents comes into play. We get it; dealing with potty training and late-night bathroom runs with little ones is part of the adventure.

The Roost Solution: The Loo Bench

So, what’s our solution? We’ve opted for a simple yet effective one – the Stansport EasyGo Loo, also known as a chamber pot. Paired with our carefully designed cabinet, the Loo Bench. Most of the time, it’s used for those inevitable midnight pee breaks or quick stops for the kiddos. As for the other business, well, we try to time our stops near flushing toilets.

The included Easy Go Toilet is easy to clean, chemical-free, and does not require electrical or water hookups. It is useable inside the cabinet, but can also be easily removed for cleaning or for use outside of the van… say, in a majestic forest. Quite simply, it is there when you need it, and invisible when you don’t.

The Loo Bench itself is custom-formed to the toilet and provides functional, and discreet storage. There is also a space for toilet paper and other toiletries and cleaning supplies. The spring-loaded, snug-fit lid of the cabinet, in conjunction with the tight seal of the Easy Go Toilet, minimizes unwanted odors until the contents can be properly dumped or buried.

The Toilet Options: Cassette Toilets, Composting Toilets, and More

Now, you might be wondering about other toilet options like cassette toilets, composting toilets, or the Laveo (also known at Roost Vans as the Diaper Genie). We’ve considered them all but ultimately settled for the chamber pot for its simplicity and cost. We took the KISS approach to our toilet solution. Cassette toilets come with chemicals and need care when disposing. Composting toilets tend to be larger, are complex and demand constant power for ventilation. Finally, the Laveo, while practical, still involves dealing with waste disposal. Essentially throwing another waste bag into the landfill as opposed to giving it back to the earth.

To Poop or Not to Poop: That is the Question

A question we often ask is, “Are you really going to take a poop in your van if you can avoid it?” We feel the answer is: probably not if you can avoid it. Finding a public restroom or a well-maintained outhouse is the preferred choice. Let’s be honest, nobody wants to stink up their cozy van space voluntarily. The Loo Bench is there for when you need it. Plain and simple.

In a nutshell, when it comes to van life and toilets, simplicity wins the day. Our approach at Roost Vans ensures that you can focus on the joy of the journey without worrying about complicated bathroom setups, and failures. So, next time nature calls, fear not – with a little planning and the right equipment, your van adventures will remain fresh and enjoyable. Happy travels, everyone!

Product release: Strap-Up Bed

We are excited to announce the launch of our new product, the Strap-Up Bed! This is a very affordable and versatile bed for sprinter and transit vans. It is made from high-quality bamboo and is easy to install and remove.
Van lifers often struggle to find a comfortable and affordable bed for their vehicles.  Quick straps provide quick access to a ready made bed at nearly any height.

Traditional beds can be expensive and difficult to install. They can also take up a lot of space, which is not ideal for vans that are already limited on space. Our Strap-Up Bed is the perfect solution for van lifers who are looking for a comfortable, affordable, and versatile bed.

The Strap-Up Bed has a number of features and benefits that make it the perfect choice for van lifers:


The Strap-Up Bed can be configured in a variety of ways to fit your needs. In combination with the Fu-Kit Bed, it gives you a great solution for sleeping four people in the van… creating a bunk-bed system.

Easy to install and remove.

The Strap-Up Bed is easy to install and remove, even for people with limited DIY skills.

Easy Storage.

The Strap-Up Bed stores out of the way and provides a ready-made bed in an instant. This van bed system gives you the ability to raise your bed quickly all the way to the ceiling, or even lower it all the way down to the wheel wells. It gives you immediate and maximum flexibility of your garage.

Park Anywhere!

Another big benefit of the Strap-Up Bed system is that you are able to level the bed regardless of the angle at which your van is parked. If you are parked at an angle, you can adjust your bed to be completely flat.

To learn more about the Strap-Up Bed, visit the product page on our website or connect with us directly. We are confident that you will love this product as much as we do!

Transit Eco-system Product Release

We’re very excited about the release of our Smooth Rail mounting system, as well as our ecosystem of cabinetry and bed products for the Transit van! For the past 5 years, we have been working hard on our Smooth Rail mounting system and all our cabinetry products for Sprinter vans… but now customizing our products to fit the Transit is a reality!

Smooth Rail Mounting System

All the benefits of our Smooth Rail mounting system can be found on our blog article HERE. The Smooth Rail mounting system, with both Sprinter and Transit vans, gives a lot of flexibility and security. It also provides a safe way to install all of our cabinetry, bed systems, kitchen cabinetry, and our benches. The mounting system is thoroughly reinforced with bracketry that goes into the rib work of the van, to ensure a robust and secure mounting point for the products that you’re installing in your van. It provides an even greater value to a DIY person because they have a tremendous amount of flexibility on where their cabinetry can go. They don’t have to thoroughly plan out their entire build based on where all the cabinetry MUST be installed. The Smooth Rail mounting system allows for modularity. You have the ability to change a build immediately after something is tried and then can easily be changed later. We have quite a few stories of customers doing Core builds through Roost Vans; or doing their own build using Roost Vans products, and then later selling their van. The new buyer of the van then wants to install additional cabinetry or remove some cabinetry, without fear of a poor finish when the cabinetry is moved or removed. That is the benefit of the Roost Vans ecosystem and how flexible it is for adjustments downstream when ownership of a van changes. The new owner can remove or simply loosen the cabinetry and then adjust the position slightly without completely removing it. This is something that L-track cannot provide. On top of this, the aesthetics of the hardware and the powder-coated rail is another big benefit that helps create an enjoyable interior environment as opposed to a utilitarian feel.

Bed systems

The release of the ecosystem also includes our Fu-kit Bed and Strap-Up Bed! These are great DIY van bed options. Both bed systems can work autonomously or in combination with each other as a bunk bed system.

The Transit Fu-kit Bed is available as a 2 or 3-panel bed and gives you a couple more inches than the sprinter bed system does. You also have the option to add a Flip-Up Kit to the bed system: This gives you a deep-seated sofa, as well as plenty of access to your garage underneath. Another benefit to the flip-up kit is having the ability to extend your kitchen countertop, giving yourself an extra 24 inches underneath. That way the extra countertop space is only exposed when you flip up the bed.

The Transit Strap-Up Bed system is so versatile. In combination with the Strap-Up Bed, it gives you a great solution for sleeping four people in the van… creating a bunk-bed system. The Strap-up Bed system gives you the ability to raise your bed quickly all the way to the ceiling, or even lower it all the way down to the wheel wells. Another big benefit of the Strap-Up Bed system is that you are able to level the bed regardless of the angle that your van is parked at.

Transit Ecosystem

The transit ecosystem is very similar if not exactly the same as the Sprinter ecosystem. However, the profile of a Transit van is slightly different than a Sprinter, so it has warranted us to adjust our Sprinter cabinetry to fit the Transit profile. It also gave us an opportunity to iterate the Sprinter cabinetry at the same time, improving upon an already great set of products.

The Transit can be a bit peculiar but our cabinetry allows for that. Sometimes you need to do some minor customization around bump-outs, but that is something a DIYer could easily do in a few minutes to make their cabinetry fit exactly where they want it.

Transit vs Sprinter

Probably one of the biggest benefits of a Transit van over the Sprinter is the area above the sliding doorway. In this area, you can install the Roost van’s upper cabinet. We highly recommend if you’re going to do this, that you also have a lower passenger cabinet in that location too… that way you can avoid standing up and hitting your head on the bottom of the cabinet as you enter the sliding doorway. Particularly for a Transit 148 wheelbase (as opposed to the extended wheelbase), you have an opportunity for more forward cabinetry in your kitchen area and in front of your bed system, without having cabinetry over your bed. With the Transit’s window pockets, it allows for greater side-to-side sleeping. So, another option is to have a bank of cabinetry above your feet on the passenger side, along with a passenger kitchen cabinet.

Transits are harder to build than Sprinters. Adding the Smooth Rail Mounting System really helps with the build process. The rear of the van is normal, good-quality steel, but the front half of the van is ultra-high-strength steel, also known as Boron steel. Boron is tremendously difficult to work with. In order to install the Smooth Rail mounting system you have to drill a few holes in these areas, which is difficult but achievable. That’s where that mounting system comes in so valuable: Once the mounting system is installed, you have an infinite array of flexible mounting positions.


A very common mistake in van layouts is having all the weight on the driver’s side. If you’re not careful, you can affect the center of gravity on your van by doing this. This is why it’s important to add storage and cabinetry on the passenger side of the van as opposed to just on the driver’s side. Having a transit mounting system, as well as the cabinetry ecosystem, gives you a lot of flexibility in your design layout. You can move a lot of that weight over to the right side of the van, which is tremendously helpful in balancing the suspension and load of your vehicle. Inevitably, the driver’s side of the van is going to store a lot of stuff, simply because it doesn’t have a door in the way… therefore it doesn’t have a restriction on how much stuff you can store on that side. Planning out your build with this in mind helps you to counteract some of the pitfalls of inexperienced van builders and uninformed layouts.

Where to start?

Our entire Eco-system including: Cabinetry, Fu-kit & Strap-up Bed Systems, as well as our Smooth Rail mounting system are live on our website. We also have several other blog posts if you want to do a deep dive into more of our products, and van life in general. For inspiration on how to use our ecosystem or how to layout your van, check out our Youtube channel!

Kicking It Up A Notch for DIY

Our core business is the design, development, and manufacture of products for van builders and the DIY market.  Regardless of your circumstance or skill set, our goal is to provide what you need to get on the road in style, and within your budget.  Our clients take a variety of approaches:

    • Some want our professional installers to do their entire project in our Portland, OR van conversion shop.
    • Many are drawn to specific products such as our Smooth Rail Mounting System, FU-Kit Bed System, Strap Up Bed System (coming soon), or any variety of our modular cabinetry solutions, and in some cases, they hire a local builder to help install our products.
    • Others choose to hire experts to do the shell/core work (electrical, plumbing, paneling, flooring, etc..), then use our DIY products for the main components (cabinets, beds, accessories, etc..).
    • Many more choose to do their own van build, using our products for some, most, or all of it.

Our mission is to support all of these approaches, and everything in between.  We are here to provide you with what you need to get on the road!

The DIY Dilemma

In our experience, most DIY van builders choose this approach because of a specific aspect of their design.  This often involves an innovation, idea, or custom need that they are excited to bring into the world.  In some cases it is due to a particular area of expertise such as an electrician, a wood worker, or a fabricator that is excited to do that portion of the van build.

However, when faced with the scope and complexities of a full van build, the prospect can be quite daunting.  In reality a van build involves almost as much complexity as building a home, and few individuals possess all of the skills and tools to do every aspect of their build without a lot of support.  Sometimes these realities lead to procrastination or project abandonment, and we hate to see that!

Our Modular Approach

(aka “Build It Your Way”)

The Roost line of products is designed to provide the support you need, in conjunction with the inspiration and freedom to pursue your passions.  This is baked into our “mix & match, use what you want” line of products, and serves the do-it-yourself builder particularly well.  We can often help tackle aspects of the build that are a particular challenge, while freeing a van owner to focus on the more desirable aspects of their build.

We cherish the symbiotic relationship we have with our fellow creators and do everything we can to support this approach.  Our DIY customers often remain in contact with us through their build process, sending pictures, offering suggestions, and making additional requests for products and support.  These interactions fuel our commitment to a constant state of improvement, and allow us to regularly refine and improve our products and services.

One of the most common requests we receive is for assistance with sourcing matching materials and hardware (particularly bamboo, rail material, and specific hardware).  Though we are happy to point these builders to our suppliers, many of our suppliers either don’t sell to the public, only sell in bulk, and/or have shipping costs that are prohibitive for smaller orders (this is specifically true of bamboo and steel).

It is in response to these requests; we are pleased to announce a major expansion of our product line to include:


About Pricing:


We offer these new options as a courtesy to support our DIY clients.  We definitely aren’t trying to become a high-volume material supplier.  We have set our pricing to be as affordable as possible, but the reality is that to provide this service, we pay to ship in both directions, cut/assemble, re-package, and re-ship these materials, as well as the associated administrative and overhead costs.

We encourage you to attempt to source materials and hardware directly with local or online suppliers when it is affordable and practical to do so, using our offerings when not.  Further, sourcing material can be a daunting and time-consuming task, and you may find that it takes you many hours to save a few bucks, and still possibly not find the right material.

It is for these situations that we are here to help.  We want to provide an easy and reasonably affordable way for our customers to source top quality, matching material so they can focus their time and energy on the passion project(s) that led them to do their own build in the first place

New *Beta* Product – Kitchen Cabinets

Product Release Announcement!

Standard Kitchen Cabinets

The long requested and awaited day has arrived!  We are pleased to begin offering two versions of our kitchen cabinet product line through our Early Access Program.

This is one of our most complex products, with a lot of moving parts, and a ton of engineering to maximize space, compatibility, versatility, and ease of use.  The kitchen is one of the most central elements of your van design, and we recommend thorough research, review, and consideration prior to selecting your cabinet, components, and position.

Driver Side Kitchen Cabinet – Standard

Passenger Side Kitchen Cabinet – Standard

Each kitchen cabinet is designed to be a stand-alone kitchen cabinet, and/or in conjunction with one another to add more counter space and versatility in terms of the location of your kitchen components.  There are too many features, details, and options to list in this release.  Please click the links above for full product descriptions (See Product Specifications tab for full spec sheets).

We hope to be releasing a couple more variations of these cabinets (including a compact version, and a sink only version) in the 2nd quarter of 2022.  For now the focus is on getting these two version through the Beta testing process and fully released as a DIY product.

A Note About Beta Testing:

Please remember that as a Beta Product anyone who chooses to participate in our Early Access Program should be prepared to encounter and overcome small issues with assembly and installation.  In reality 90% of the Beta products we ship go off with a hitch, but we do want to make sure that in the event you do experience any issues, you are prepared to do so with a little understanding and patience that this is not yet a fully released product.  Please keep the following in mind:

  • The instruction manual will be a preliminary version of instructions and may not meet the same standards of quality and ease of use as our standard products.
  • Though we have been installing these in our Portland, OR shop for years, the process of a product evolving from Shop Only > Beta > Full Release is all about making minor adjustments and improvements. It is possible a little extra drilling, shaving, or a trip to the hardware store may be required to complete the process.  Your candid and detailed feedback is critical to the process. 
  • In exchange for a little patience and understanding with the above, we will be available to assist by phone and/or screen share to help you work through any difficulties you might experience.