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‘Stealth Studio’ One-Ups Van Life Trend With Apartment Truck

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Designed as an affordable, in-city option, the converted Ford E-350 box truck contains a study, standard shower, kitchen, gear garage, and patio.

At the start of 2021, a grad student named Jason was at the start of a big transition. Already several years into his career, he decided to change gears and pursue a master’s degree in urban planning. However, applying for graduate programs, juggling gigs, and keeping within his budget would require something affordable and flexible.

So, he picked up a shelled-out 2004 Ford E-350 box truck off Craigslist and tapped his friend, Matt Erickson of Stealth Studio, to help with the build-out. The two morphed the mini-freighter into a fully functional studio apartment, complete with a gear garage and fold-out patio.

In this tour, Jason takes us through the 125 square-foot space and its many clever innovations. The design’s functional aspects include a standard 32 x 32-inch shower, composting toilet, and full-size study. He fitted the urban studio with rooftop solar and a lithium battery setup which, considering the array of appliances and tech going on within the truck, is necessary.

“Think about your goals,” Jason said. “Then build something that works for you.” Aspiring van lifers, this one’s for you.

Runtime: 15 minutes

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