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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Note: The van is my first adventure into working with a cargo vehicle to better suit my needs, it is a work in progress, so this thread will be as well. I have some ideas to improve versatility and functionality. They may work out great or may be mission impossible. But, I'll start with the simple things first. :)

The van is a 135 cargo, factory extended load partition, passenger slider & 270 degree rear doors with glass for outward visibility while driving.

Driving home after delivery, a couple weeks ago, I was rather frustrated with all the noise inside the vehicle. Especially at speed over aging interstate highways, I found it unbearable. Having a cargo partition is supposed to help keep noise down, but it is the absolute opposite. It is like a soundboard transmitting anything and everything.

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Sounds "come up" via the extended metal partition, which is integrated into the seat bases, and takes up roughly 50% under the seats towards the cargo side.

The vertical and horizontal metal parts between the seats are especially loud, and the big metal partition is just a big acoustic board.

I always figured some sound proofing was going to be required, but I never thought the vehicle would be that loud and it would be a day 1 kind of necessity.
 

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Yes, the little bags of foam down in the side wells only help a bit. Vanrug custom fit foam backed carpets help and are simple to throw down. You could insulate the back of the partition but isn't attractive unless you go over all with trunk liner.
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Discussion Starter #3
Having read up a little bit on sound proofing, it seems foil based butyl liner applied to the bare metal surfaces is a first step. Supposedly, a little bit goes a long way (one can read about 25% - 30% surface coverage). But, in case of this seat base and partition wall, that was way too optimistic.

Being new to sound proofing, and optimistic about how fast this could go and how well this would work; I started out with segmented strips in the recesses / undulations of the partition wall, cut to size, so they'd be easier to conceal later by carpeting. Moved the seats forward, applied strips. Did the same on the cargo side. And, that did basically nothing. Zero noticeable effect.

So, I figured I needed to try something different. Unbolted the extended box parts from between the seats. Went for full coverage on the lower plank. Zero sound. Bingo!

Here you can see the first bit done, ready to do part two, brown paper removed, letting the sun hit the material just a bit so it would be a bit more malleable and stickier.

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I also decided I had to remove the partition to make it easier to work on it, so that I could have it horizontal and work on the cabin side. You can see a couple of the larger panels I had applied on the cabin side in attempt one. The other side will show up later.

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With the partition removed, I could also easily work on the areas under the seats, the box beam, cabin walls, ...

I only wanted to remove the partition once and done; so I am applying butyl tape on any surface area that the panel bolts to, as that should help minimize vibration / noise transfer.

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By the way, here's the battery under the passenger seat. Another loud tin can thing.

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Discussion Starter #4
After covering most of the partition on the cabin side ...

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I had to wait for carpeting. So I moved the panel around and started to look behind the factory corrugated plastic panels, which sound like plastic drums.

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There is no sound deadening in the upper side walls.

(following are screen shots from a tapping for sound video, which is why my hand is prominent)

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The lower sides have one strip of spray on sound deadening foam.

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I also have a rattle here:

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So, armed with a small screw driver to undo the panel retention buttons and a box of sound deadener + scissors and some rollers. Time to tackle some of the cargo area.
 

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Discussion Starter #5 (Edited)
I don't have enough images of the rest of this stuff, as I was trying to get a move on, but suffice it to say, every open space got covered with large panels or wide long strips to best fit any large space, I applied strips in the lower areas besides any of the factory foam, any braces between the outside shell and inside of the vehicle were wrapped on one side, foam strips were strategically applied to stop any kind of panel slap or drumming in the upper panels, metal frame edges where the plastic panel corners could hit the frame got a few inches of window seal strip.

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I don't recall if I did that vertical brace, it was quiet as it has glue between it and the exterior ... but I may have applied a strip for good measure before putting the corrugated plastic back up.

Sound deadened the rear doors, reapplied the plastic and then put some window seal on to stop the panel slap.

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The rattle was this control module, unscrewed it, applied sound deader to the inside of the entire metal side you see in the image and down lower. Reinstalled module.

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Discussion Starter #6 (Edited)
In the mean time the carpeting material arrived. Time to hide some of the sound deadener.

The material is not stretchy, the glue can be like instant stick and since the partition is rather large with a ton of undulation and I'm trying this for the first time and doing it solo, I worked in smaller panels.

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And then reinstalled the partition.

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Driving the van with everything buttoned up, she sounds like a different vehicle. Closing the doors is solid. Noise is way more subdued, I can have the radio very low, engine noise is a bit more pronounced but not really in a bad way, you can hear road noise from vehicles passing, ... and actually have a conversation now.

There is still a couple " noisy speeds " around 47-50 mph & 77-80 mph. I'm wondering if that is down to tire balance, maybe a bit of flat spotting, ...

But, all in all, even though a bit of an adventure and time consuming, with some small trials and a cautious first timer approach; it has been very worthwhile to do, and really is night and day difference. The cabin is now on par with any other typical vehicle, really, and way more pleasurable to drive.

Onto another thing that has bugged me, and probably many Metris owners: the lack of a console. And, if you have the extended cargo partition, you get a useless ski slope from the dash cubby to the partition box, and a partition box top that isn't even flat or conducive to do anything with. I have looked at dozens of consoles for vans or trucks. Most could never ever fit or be useful. I had high hopes for one model in particular, but then the arm rests ... sigh.

So, I fabbed up a couple boxes out of 3/8 plywood, to the appropriate size as to what is available between the seats, not hitting your knuckles when trying to click in or out, grabbing keys, etc. One is a bit wider and deeper, one is a bit narrower and less deep. Wrapped them in carpeting, inside and out. Screwed down my phone mounts. A couple partition cubbies may follow, but this works a treat. They pretty much friction fit in place.

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I will put a bit of double sided tape under a couple edges that are coming loose. I was trying my best not to have a ton of overspray and make a mess of things.
 
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