Developing and building a mobile working environment, that’s the essence of Labora. For convenience, you could describe the project as building a business motorhome. So, the emphasis is on being able to work in different places and not on travelling and entertainment. Although many things are similar to a motorhome, it is anything but a motorhome. There are no fixed seats in the back for example and the emphasis is on functionality and practicality and not “cosy”. In addition, there are facilities to allow 24 hour cycles to avoid hotel stays.
Labora is a technical project with a scientific approach. For example, the intention is to construct with light materials in order to significantly reduce mass. You will therefore not encounter any wood, chipboard or mild steel in the vehicle. This will be offset by other materials, such as honeycomb sheet, composites and aluminium.
And there are more contradictions, such as no lead-acid batteries but LiFePO4 technology, permanent 12 V and 230 V power, diesel heating versus gas heating, induction cooking versus gas cooking, fancy refrigerators versus a 12V compressor fridge. Also worth mentioning: Flexible constructions to retain floor space versus fully filling the van space.
In recent years, I have looked at and studied a lot of custom work. Much to my dismay, I have to conclude that all too often very bad work is done in the sector with accents on far too heavy, wrong choice of materials, serious rust, rot and mould and clumsy and ill-considered constructions.
To prove me right, it makes the Labora project a tough challenge, but at the same time an illustration of how things can be done differently and hopefully better. The plan is to use 2021 and 2022 for the final construction and to publish much information.