Start a discussion

The Bunnings Workshop community can help with your home improvement projects.

1986 Jayco caravan renovation

New Contributor

1986 Jayco caravan renovation

This is our reno, most everything came from Bunnings. My husband worked on it while doing chemo. He was a rock star. We have done a half lap 5 years ago, made more mods and we set off on 16 July for the big lap.

 1986 Jayco before1986 Jayco before1986 Jayco before1986 Jayco before1986 Jayco before1986 Jayco before1986 Jayco before1986 Jayco beforeall painted perfect still 5 years later air con from bunningsall painted perfect still 5 years later air con from bunningsall painted perfect 5 years later boot addedall painted perfect 5 years later boot addedtable storage for laptop tablet etc power stationtable storage for laptop tablet etc power stationnew bench tops Bunningsnew bench tops Bunningsnew doors and hardware, celing and most walls replacednew doors and hardware, celing and most walls replacedmarine vinyal for couches 43"tvmarine vinyal for couches 43"tvwareobewareobecaravan04.jpgall decorated and painteall decorated and paintegas lift bed for storagegas lift bed for storagecaravan01.jpg

Bunnings Team Member
Bunnings Team Member

Re: How to renovate a caravan - Part 3

Hello @applesauce


Welcome to the Bunnings Workshop community. It's fabulous to have you join us, and thank you for sharing your awesome caravan project with us.


What a fantastic caravan renovation. The cabinets, the bench top, and the colours all join in to form this amazing picture. I can just imagine how comfortable you guys will be once you begin your trip. It is truly a total transformation from that original picture at the beginning. I can't believe you managed to squeeze in an aircon unit onto the caravan. 


Did you run into anything challenging while renovating the caravan? Any other information you can share while rebuilding the caravan would be much appreciated.


Again, thank you for sharing this wonderful caravan remodelling project.




See something interesting? Give it the thumbs up!
Community Manager
Community Manager

Re: 1986 Jayco caravan renovation

Great work @applesauce,


Thanks so much for sharing. There's been such a resurgence of interest in caravan holidays in recent years. I'm sure you will be able to enjoy many special trips in your van in the years to come.


Let me tag some other keen caravan renovators in the community as I'm sure they will be keen to see your handiwork: @Peggers@twocutekelpies@VickiD@FloTheCaravan.


Thanks again, and a very warm welcome to the Bunnings Workshop community. 




See something interesting? Give it the thumbs up!
Trusted Contributor

Re: 1986 Jayco caravan renovation

Absolutely fantastic transformation. I particularly like the new kitchen. 😎

What type of vehicle pulls the van?


"My husband worked on it while doing chemo. He was a rock star."


We've lost a lotta rock stars lately - I hope the chemotherapy worked and he's now well.




Junior Contributor

Re: 1986 Jayco caravan renovation

Looks awesome. I hope you have a great lap.

Re: 1986 Jayco caravan renovation

Thank you, we started with black melamine bench tops but found they scratched, we used the ones in the picture with a section of real butcher block under the exhaust fan to cook on. All sealed with food grade oil.


The Van is only 1900kg fully loaded (2000kg allowed) and fitted with electric brakes. We have a 2007 Jeep Grand Cherokee 3.7CRD with a 3500kg tow capability.



Re: How to renovate a caravan - Part 3

 Thank you :smile: 


Most challenging was the bench tops, but with help from the local Bunnings we worked it out. Getting it oiled correctly was the issue. All floors were in good condition so just ripped up the vinyl and carpet cleaned the floor and lay the vinyl planks. The bench seats were a very easy fix. We recovered with marine vinyl as we have 2 toy poodles, so paw prints that are specially covered in red dust are easily wiped off. Complete rewire. We were very lucky as we had metal support already there to hold a spare tyre. Welded reinforcement and a 100kg guy jumping up and down on it to make sure we had it right before the split system went on. That was another Bunning's bargain at $399 end of season sale.  The internal part fitted perfectly between the wardrobe and back window. Most interior claddings were removed and replaced, No wood structure was touched as it is a wood frame caravan, all were in pristine condition. To alter any would risk the structural integrity. The two main reasons we brought the caravan were layout and structural integrity.


All the cupboard doors were replaced. This was very simple, we used the regional doors as templates. 12mm MDF with a 6mm both decretive and reinforcement strip for the handle and catches. The original catches still worked perfectly with adjustments. My husband did roll his eyes when I wanted that strip and my must-have handles to match our kitchen. but I really wanted that nod to Hamptons. Every single seam and around the wall and floors were filled with polyurethane. We used this to allow the paint to stick. One of the biggest costs was THAT. My husband needed a frequent flyer badge to bunnings for this.  We followed the colour scheme of our house using Dulux interior and exterior. The exterior paint looks as good as the day it went on. Removed the roof mount air conditioner, it worked but we wanted colder. Sheet of aluminum to cover the roof hole, sealed up tight then latex paint on the roof. Has not leaked 5 years on.


All exterior including roof and window frames had a combo of grinder and wire brush back to bare metal. We build the bed box and added a gas lift bed frame for storage. He also created a media box with a lift-up lid that is our dining table. Safe storage and charging for laptops tablets and phones. 43ïnch tv on a swinging wall mount. New 12/240v fridge. 120Ah battery plus DC to DC charger. The sink runs like a normal tap when hooked up or again the same using 12v. So tv tap lights fridge can all run off the battery. I tend to forget all the things, but feel free to ask questions. We are more than happy to help anybody with information

Why join the Bunnings Workshop community?

Workshop is a friendly place to learn, get ideas and find inspiration for your home improvement projects