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Pop-top caravan renovation

Making a Splash

Pop-top caravan renovation

I renovated my 1994 Jayco Sprite from top to bottom, including resealing every seam on the exterior, replacing all external fastenings and attachments, priming and painting, then, with the help of a friend, adding art, to make it one unique little van. On the interior it was primed and painted throughout, new splashback, sink, tap, benchtops, upholstery, handles and knobs, vinyl plank flooring, curtains, water pumps, 12 volt system, lights, and all switches and power points. I also built a conversion frame to enable the two singles to become one double. It was like a new van.



Truck and Car Wash


Diggers Acetone

Sikaflex 521-UV

Frogtape Masking Tape (green)

Poly Paint Stripper

Cling Wrap

Crommelin's Exterior Grade Waterproofing and Fabric Membrane

Globalcote Primer and Infracote

Dulux Etch Primer - exterior

Dulux Weathershield Maxiflex in gloss - white for top of exterior, and Dulux 'Bluish Water' for lower

Diggers Wax and Grease Remover

White Knight Rust Guard Fish Oil for draw bar

White Knight Rust Guard Metal primer   "  "

White Knight Rust Guard Epoxy Enamel " " 'Shale Grey'

Truline insert moulding

Selley's Polyglaze Tyre Shine



Selley's Sugar Soap

Easy Surface Preparation (ESP)

Zinsser BIN shellac-based primer  - all interior surfaces

Taubman's Paint + Primer Low sheen in Dulux colour Lexicon Quarter - walls

Taubman's Water Based Enamel in straight white - upper cabinets 

Taubman's WBE semigloss 'Subiaco Sand' - lower cabinets

26 mm Merbau panel for benchtops

Selley's Original Liquid Nails

12mm Meranti for stove installation

Feast Watson Kitchen Timber Oil for benchtops

3mm ply sheets, cut into 100mm wide planks

Sikaseal Gap Filler

Pressed Metal sheet for splashback.

Bondcrete Cement Additive to prep-seal flooring

Decor8 White Penny Round tiles for table top

MDF 700mm circle panel for table top

Indian Kanthas for upholstery

Brother sewing machine

Senso Self-Adhesive vinyl floor planks



Josco Nylon Wheel on a drill

Paint Partner Reusable Sealant Edges

Scotchbrite scourers

Dewalt Table saw

Ryobi One+ jigsaw, trim nailer, driver, caulking gun, drill, sander

Bosch Sliding Mitre Saw

35mm Irwin speed bore drill bit

UniPro Microfibre 4mm nap rollers

various other handtools, brushes, rollers and trays

Sanding equipment



Step 1

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Step 2


Retired Team Member
Retired Team Member

Re: POP TOP CARAVAN RENOVATION @minnie.the.sprite.poptop

Hi @LizzieCro,


You have created such a fun and dreamy caravan renovation! You must absolutely be pleased with the transformation and I am sure it will be admired by many of our caravan enthusiasts like @twocutekelpies@selva, and @woodenwookie. Great projects like yours may make it into one of our Top Ideas articles like our 10 caravan renovations one day. 


Did you paint your flowers with a stencil or by freehand? Do you have any tips for someone who is looking to take on a caravan reno of their own?




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Re: POP TOP CARAVAN RENOVATION @minnie.the.sprite.poptop

Hi Katie,

Thanks very much.


The flowers were painted freehand, by myself and a friend; my design, his flower shapes, a real collaboration.


Tips to take on a caravan renovation..... research. Join forum groups for caravan renovations, and use the search icon to find the information you need. Ask questions, record info, LEARN before you buy the van.  I've been looking at caravan forums for 4 years now, and I'm still learning things. If you think renovating a caravan will be easy, you may be disappointed. Unexpected things occur, they're rarely as quick to renovate (properly) as you think they'll be, and the van reno's rarely come within budget. I've seen so many people give up half way because they realise the cost of finishing the job is far too much. Remember the critical issue of weight in the caravan, and use lightweight materials only. If your van is finished and beautiful, but exceeds the permissable weight, you won't be able to register it, and, in the event of an accident, your insurance company will not cover you. Do your homework. Having said all that, it's a very rewarding renovation to do, and will skill you up for many other things.

Retired Team Member
Retired Team Member

Re: POP TOP CARAVAN RENOVATION @minnie.the.sprite.poptop

Hi @LizzieCro,


An impressive collaboration indeed! Thank you for sharing your process and great tips with the community. 




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Making a Splash

Re: Pop-top caravan renovation

Anyone who would like to see step-by-step procedures on how I did many of the tasks with this van, and the products I used, can send me a private message and I'll direct you to the Instagram account I had while I did the renovation. I tried to include as much detail as I could for anyone who was interested. I did list the address for the account here in the Bunnings Workshop forum, but it's been removed, so I assume that's not permitted. Apologies to the moderators.

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