1966 Dodge Travco Interior (Before)


We’ve spent the past few days just sort of cleaning up inside the Travco. It wasn’t that bad to begin with, but it obviously hadn’t gotten too much attention in the past few years. I also took off all the purple window tint, which made a humongous difference in the feel of the bus.

So anyway, these are the Bumfuzzle before pictures. From here we’ll tear off the ceiling, replace the original carpeting, repair a few wall panels, paint the cabinets, repair a couple of vinyl tears, and a few other things. Overall it doesn’t look too daunting. It’s really amazing to me how good of shape it is in, and how everything seems to be working. Hell, even the cigarette lighter still fires up.

As for engine work, brakes, etc. That stuff is going to have to wait a bit as we still haven’t really figured out a good solution to getting this thing inside or to warm weather to get underneath it. We’ve had a lot of offers from Bum friends, but all would require quite a bit of driving each day, and I’m really not into commuting to work. Fifteen hundred dollars was just spent on the brakes two months ago, so that is good to go. All new exhaust was put on a couple of years ago too. A big engine job was done back in 1991, but I’m not seeing receipts from anything recently. We’ll replace the tires (they are brand new based on mileage, but eleven years old and showing signs of sidewall cracking), change the oil, and hit the road. Hopefully we’ll make it to warmer climes before we run into any issues.

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55 Comments on “1966 Dodge Travco Interior (Before)”

  1. It is a beauty! The condition is excellent and I am truly happy to see that no one hosed it all up. Little clean up and back on the road again!

  2. GORGEOUS. And yet, it’s going to be a gorgeous transformation. I can’t wait to see what you do! If your turf ever gets close to our surf, daysail on Totem for the memories. 🙂

  3. I love this!! It is an oversized Glamper, which I would love to have. You are going to have so much fun with this.

  4. Ok, you guys have done it again! That thing is awesome. Can’t wait to read about the next adventure. By the way, I read somewhere in your blog that the Bahamas was one of your favorite places in terms of beauty. I have to agree! Staniel Cay at the moment….

  5. Don’t want to speak for Ali and Pat … I’m betting kids sleep in the back bedroom and ma and pa kettle use the drop down table in the front.

  6. Been eagerly awaiting these pics. I bet the folks who have been tending to it all these years are pleased with where its landed.

  7. Hey Bums, I’m excited for y’all. Although I’m a sailor at heart and will miss the “boat stuff” good or bad, I truly can’t imagine what it would be like to cruise with two young kiddos. Kids need space, room to run around and play in the dirt, to be able to go outside without mom or dad watching every move. I can only imagine the the frustration, difficulty and general yuck of an old boat, young kids, and a marriage in general. A true trifecta. From the very beginning, with that fateful pizza pie and cold beer in Chicago when y’all decided to buck the norm, avoid the suburbs and live life “on the margin”, the thing that has been the most inspiring for me has been the guts to MOVE ON. Too many of us get stuck in a rut and afraid to deal with a bad situation. We become paralyzed in our lives . You guys embody the free spirit like we all should. CHEERS!


  8. I hope the gas lines and furnace are in good condition. It wasn’t long ago near where I live that one exploded after having just gotten out of the shop for repairs to the furnace.

  9. I love the Dishmaster! If grew up with one and my parents put one into their new home a couple if years ago. Silly, but it works great.

  10. I have never heard of exploding furnaces, but in the Airstream world we replace any furnace from before the 70’s. Too much potential for CO2 poisoning from the older furnaces.

    The interior looks lovely and in great shape for its age.

  11. Love it — pure retro chic! Was a little surprised to read that you were going to re-carpet, though. Carpets are so hard to keep clean and un-nastified, especially with kids. Can be allergenic too. Did you consider any alternate flooring (vinyl, cork, rubberized, bamboo…) instead of carpet? Can’t wait to see the finished product, but I love it already!

  12. Gosh, this brings back so many sweet memories. We grew up with a Travco and right about now we would have be in Florida at Disneyworld. It was an annual vacation for our family of 5. My dad made all sorts of interior improvements to the white-red stripe Travco and kept it shiny on the outside. But after many years and miles of travel all over the USA, when he and my mom experienced brake failure in the mountains did they trade it in. It was the perfect size for our family. I remember reading many books while sprawled on the back bed while we sped along to our destination 🙂 Enjoy your gem of an RV!

  13. I loved all the travel via boat, but rv travel and life on the road is something I can really relate to. I can’t wait to follow this new chapter. Are you guys thinking of heading south back into Mexico?

  14. Are you planning on any safety upgrades to the driver and passenger seats – ones with headrests and lap/shoulder belts? I’m not even going to open the can of worms and ask about car seats for the little ones or anything, because of course its a real divisive topic and my opinion won’t change your plans. Just thinking safety. Feel free to ignore!

    1. No plans to change driver and passenger seats right now. I like the look of the originals, they remind me of the Porsche seats. But we’ll see.

  15. I’m blown away by the sweetness of that ride. WOW. It’s gorgeous! And I gotta tell you, I sighed when I saw the bathroom – our porta potty and sun showers are better than nothing, but not easy with the 3 kids.

    Does it have 4 wheel drive? How will you buckle the kids in? Or will you?! (haha, doesn’t seem like ANYONE does that here except for us)

    How about solar panels? Are you guys going to get those on? That was probably one of the best decisions we made, building the solar panels ourselves and putting them on the roof.

    1. Yeah, when we left VW life we always said the next vehicle would at least have to include a bathroom. So here we are.

      No 4 wheel drive. 🙂

      And yes, solar will definitely be going on in the near future.

  16. How big is the water heater? On your previous post, I could have sworn the original bill of sale said 50 gallon?! Unless I didn’t see the decimal point. My new-ish 30 foot RV trailer has a whopping 6 gallons of hot water… we get to take showers in shifts!

    1. I’m not sure. It’s definitely not 50 gallons! I think that was a misprint on the bill of sale. It’s a lot bigger than the 5 gallon tank we have on the boat, but it might all just be insulation inside. Probably between 5 and 10 gallons. I’m guessing the big fresh water tank is about 40 gallons, so overall between all the tanks we’re probably looking at about 50 gallons.

    1. Why drag around heavy lead acid with 30% of nominal capacity usable, when LiFePO4 is light, safe, and has 70+% of nominal capacity usable? And, in house bank application, has an expected life time of 2000+ charge cycles?

    1. Voyagevixen, a question for you if you don’t mind. I like shoulder belts for myself (although I realize it’s a personal decision so I’m not prescribing them for others), and quite a few older Class A’s I’ve looked at don’t have them. I found that there are newer seats that have the shoulder belts built in, so I thought cool, I’m set. But then I discovered that sellers are very “tight” about selling them to anyone with a motorhome that did not originally have them. I get the idea: They worry that someone will put them in a vehicle with inadequate floor reinforcement (since all the thrust from the seatbelts goes there). I trust myself to get that part right (if there is anything boaters know how to do it’s put in backing blocks, after all), but there is still the red tape about actually purchasing the seats. So…. how/where did you get yours?


      Bums: Can’t wait to watch the “Fuzzco” take shape — should be cool!

  17. thanks for the pictures!! really in good condition, can’t wait to see what you do to it, doesn’t really need much, but, you’ll put your personalities into it…F U N

  18. It’s pretty far from where you are, but on the island of Galveston in Texas there is an amazing RV park we just lived at for 6 months with our 2 children. It has a playground, huge indoor spa, amazing putt-putt course and the nicest owners ever, they loved our children and were incredibly kind (they even have a pizza making and ordering service they deliver right to your RV!). Their winter rate is $545 and that includes everything. It might be a good place (that is warm) and close to Mexico (if that is where you are going next) to hunker down and work on your RV. It is also across the street from the beach. They have mechanics that come to the park and fix things (engines and systems) if you need help. Good luck and have fun on your new adventure! love, Chelsea

  19. I don’t want to be a party pooper but one cup holder in the front may lead to some serious fights between pilot and co-pilot. I’d upgrade that feature fast! Sweet ride!

  20. I had to laugh out loud at the last comment!! I saw that and thought the SAME THING! But then, I’m old enough to realize it was an ashtray…because when this RV was made people could (and did)smoke anywhere!

  21. Hi Bums,

    My partner and I are looking into buying an old motorhome and kickin’ around it in for a while, “pre-kids”. If it works out, we will keep doing it with those hypothetical kids.

    When you renovated the travco, Pat, did you redo the bathroom/shower? or is it still the original shower/toilet combo that is shown above?


    1. No, it’s still the same. The toilet works great. We put a new shower head nozzle thingy on, and added some hooks and pulled a couple other things off the wall, but otherwise it’s still 60s.

  22. This Camping Motorhome is such a beauty. Love it so much and your art of travelling of course too. I can`t wait reading all of your posts from the last years. Next week, there is a lot of work, but on friday i will be back in your adventures.

  23. Just discovered you by way of Instagram and the Malish family. Was looking at a Travco and heard you guys had one! So now I’m stalking your blog and loving it. Look forward to following your bumventures to come. Thank you for all the tips …

  24. I know the the the 2nd owners of this camper!! So many good memories!! It is crazy awesome to see this!!! They called it the blast in the plast!!!

  25. I have a Travco, mine is a 1970 it’s a 280 has a 318. It’s rough ! Runs but no brakes but it was cheap. I may rebuild it some day????

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