An obvious first step on the van conversion was to remove EVERYTHING.
We even removed the factory subfloor and bulk head.
The subfloor and bulkhead were installed using rivets which needed to be drilled and cut using an angle grinder.
Pro Tip: hold onto the factory subfloor to use later as a template for tracing insulation and new subfloor cutouts.
Once everything was out, I cleaned and degreased years of dirt and grime.
One of our wheel wells was pretty rusted. At the time, cutting out the rust and welding in new steel was not within our capabilities. We decided to mend the issue using POR15 Epoxy Putty. We lightly cleaned the areas with a wire wheel and filled any large holes or pits with the putty. We then painted over everything with POR15 paint, including any rust or bare metal spots throughout the rest of the van. We painted these areas from the underside of the van as well.
I used silver POR15 paint, as it is not available in white. I figured it would be the easiest color to cover with a white top coat on any visible surfaces. I later bought a pack of 6 mini cans, which is only available in black. These were much easier to work with. This paint is SUPER tough and the can becomes impossible to open after a few uses.