All the service vehicles I have used for locksmithing:
1. 1984 Volkswagen Rabbit.
I folded the back seat up and had all my tools and stock where the back
seats and trunk were.
Pros: Cheap. It's what I had at the time. Good on gas.
Cons: Looked unprofessional. No space inside to work. Unreliable
2. 1986 GMC 2500 Cargo Van.
I didn't have shelving at first, so all my tools were scattered on the
floor. After a few years I finally bought Adrian Steel shelves and
wished I had done that years earlier. I loved that truck. I put 2 extra
leafs in each side of the rear and it held up to the weight.
Pros: Space was ample. Looked professional.
Cons: Couldn't get into underground parking garages due to height. Got
into a few accidents. Couldn't see well backing up. Broke down a few
times. Not tall enough to stand up in.
3. 198? Ford Full Size Cargo Van.
This was an employer's vehicle. It was okay. I didn't like the way it
was laid out because I had to get out of the vehicle to get to the back
Pros: Held a lot of weight. Could jump curbs to do U-turns (lots of
ground clearance). Looked professional.
Cons: No underground access due to height. Gas guzzler. Didn't like the
interior layout. Not tall enough to stand up in.
4. 198? Dodge Full Size Cargo Van
This was an employer's vehicle. No shelves, except for some stock and
the key machine.
Pros: Looked somewhat professional.
Cons: Tools, parts, stock, keys and everything was scattered all over
the floor as it was a shared vehicle. Nobody really cared what shape
they left the vehicle in for the next guy. Stock and keys were hard to
find, if there was any left after the last guy. Big air gaps in the
door seals. Propane powered was crappy to fill, especially in 40 below
weather. Not tall enough to stand up in.
5. 19?? Grumman? Used Postal Vehicle.
Another employer's vehicle.
Pros: Could stand up in it without breaking my back. Lots of room.
Cons: Propane powered. Hard to fill in 40 below weather. Took about 3
minutes to get it up to 60 miles per hour (no joke). No stock, tools,
6. 1996 GMC Safari
Used this in the city for several years. I put the Adrian shelves in
Pros: Could easily get into underground parking garages. Looked very
professional. Fair on gas.
Cons: It sagged with the weight. Blew a tire on the expressway due to
factory crappy tires and the weight, resulting in a collision at about
80 miles per hour. Many, many accidents. Handled poorly. Not much space
inside. Had to get out of the vehicle to get to the back section. The
floor was always covered with boxes, tools, etc. because of lack of
interior space. Not tall enough to stand up in.
7. 19?? unknown body Box Van (delivery truck style).
This was another employer's vehicle. Used this for about a month before
it broke down. I loved the sliding doors on the sides and between the
cab and cargo.
Pros: Looked professional. Could stand up in it comfortably. Was fun to
drive, especially with the doors open. It held a lot of stock, tools,
Cons: Very, very ugly. Very, very loud when driving. No air
8. 199? Dodge Full Size Van.
This was another employer's vehicle. I hated the interior layout of
this as well because I had to get out of the vehicle to access the
Pros: Held sufficent stock, tools, etc. Looked professional. Fair on
Cons: Felt "light duty" compared to the Ford and GMC Full-Sized vans.
Even felt light duty compared to the GMC Safari. Very unreliable
vehicle. Not tall enough to stand up in.
9. 2003 Ford E350 Full Size Van.
This was another employer's vehicle. I laid out the interior. It was
sweet. I had the keying bench on a sliding rail that could slide into
the shelving to save on space.
Pros: Very reliable. Very professional looking. Tall enough to hop
curbs again. Plenty of space inside.
Cons: Gas guzzler. Not tall enough to stand up in.
10. 2004 Chevy Aveo.
Yes, starting out on my own again at zero. Can't wait for a real
Pros: Good on gas. Cheap vehicle.
Cons: Looks very unprofessional. No room inside to work, or for
machinery, stock, etc.
My next vehicle... hmmm... I'm looking at vehicles I can stand up in.
My back is getting old. I liked the full size box trucks for that.
Anybody ever own a Reading 72" tall van body?
Anybody ever own a big box truck?
Anybody ever own a van with an extended ceiling?
- posted 17 years ago