What do you do again?
We sell the leading kit for DIYers to install a newer engine in their 83-91 VW Vanagons. It makes them faster, more reliable, more fuel efficient, and easier and cheaper to maintain.
How does it compare to the other options?
It's the only conversion designed specifically for long life and reliability, full stop. No other conversion comes close. Starting from the nucleus of the conversion (the engine choice): The tractor engine like iron block, non-interference, inline 4 Zetec is known for its robustness and longevity. Compared to the open-deck, interference, aluminum block, horizontally-opposed engines from Subaru, known for their almost guaranteed showstopper modes of failure. The reality is everything is great when it's great, but the Bostig has fewer, less frequent, and far less serious modes of failure in every aspect of its implementation, and within the engine itself.
Because of the design and engines choices, this is just as true today as it was when the very first conversion was sold in 2005. There are *still* 25 zetecs for every subaru engine you can swap into a van (used to be 50:1) to be had, at lower cost, with lower mileage, that will run further/longer and at much lower risk of major issues.
Aside from everything you can read on this site, there's plenty more out there... don't just take a vendor's word, the more homework you do, the better. Here is a customer site with some great writeups on the topic:
How much is the whole conversion when done?
If you set your budget between $9,000-$11,000 for the whole project, finished and driving, you'll be fine. Unlike the other options where multi-thousand dollar surprise cost overruns are very real, such overruns were designed out of the Bostig equation. There is no lower install or operating risk conversion available, that's how one full time person can support 800+ conversions while still undertaking new development and stay in business.
Are they available right now?
Usually not, they tend to sell out months in advance for scheduled kits but the biggest savings (save $1000!) is to place a smaller deposit on a group production kit far in advance of when you'll need it.
Is the engine included?
For regular kits no. We do offer turnkey packages and installs, but for the DIYer the idea is to keep the cost as low as possible. The wearable parts are sourced according to instructions in the manual. This is because using these methods, it is faster, easier, and cheaper to source those parts directly without having me have to handle them and mark them up. In addition this was done since they are the parts you will maintain the conversion with down the road, and will know how to get them again, and can keep the van on the road for the rest of your(or its) life.
What year/application engine do I need
See the "Engine call sheet" contained in the factory manual. The manual is in the docs area of the support section of the main site menu.
I'm not a mechanic, can I still do the conversion?
Yes. I have more musicians and academics as customers than car guys. The system is designed for novices, and is so simple and easy you will succeed. NOBODY has failed that has followed the Bostig instructions and support guidance, this is unique among the conversion options for DIYers. We've had shop classes, 10 year old kids, mobility impaired 76 year olds, and even a legally blind person (can't drive it, but did the install) complete the install successfully. It's actually very safe to say that if you cannot complete a Bostig, you really may want to rethink owning own a Vanagon. Common hand tools are the only requirement. The entire install process can be viewed by downloading the manual for free from the support section.
I have an Air Cooled or Diesel vanagon, can I still do the conversion?
While it's possible and people have done both, I don't recommend it. It's the same amount of work as the conversion itself, and without all the help/docs. You need the watercooled trans for both, and other parts as well... it's just extra hassle that is best avoided unless you simply can't part with the van. But you'll need to find outside help for that portion of the install, as I don't support it.