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I really want a campervan....

(35 Posts)
Greydog Sat 13-Apr-13 14:50:01

but a smallish one, nothing too big, and have today seen an elderly (1987) VW it's a Transporter t25. I've only looked at it from across the road, but it's calling to me! Before I go and look properly, and am trapped, what do the experienced camper vanners think? Pros and cons? general thoughts?

Allegrogirl Mon 15-Apr-13 21:12:56

sanityawol bodywork will be required sometime in the future definitely. I'll bear S Molton in mind.

DH would be well jealous of a BMC crammed barn.

sanityawol Mon 15-Apr-13 22:18:38

Try "Austin 1800 Utility" out on your DH wink ...and the aggro even had a quartic steering wheel.

But if my experience is anything to go by, never let your DH have a barn or he will fill it with projects... the car equivalent of bringing home stray dogs. For a whole load of reasons we've been downsizing the fleet a bit lately, but it's now at the point where there are certain cars he can't decide between (none of them on the road, mind).

I've just had a quick google of VWs in SMolton, and it seems there are actually two garages that specialise up there (we're at the Cornwall end of North Devon so still a fair distance away). The one that I know is There is also Coast VWs, who are apparently T25 specialists, but I have no experience of them whatsoever so can't make any comment on whether they're good or bad.

I'm sure that you know this, but be a bit careful of some VW 'specialists' - a friend had problems with someone who did some downright dangerous 'modifications' on their van to do with the ride height, then did a flit and fucked off with lots of people's money. I'm sure that they're probably no longer in the county - if they are, from what I've heard about the work they have done they probably no longer have knee-caps.

Quenelle Tue 16-Apr-13 12:25:20

MrsHoarder how many can sleep in your campervan? And what's the bed configuration?

DH and I could never afford a decent one so have been thinking about buying a Transit and converting it. One of our criteria for layout is that we must be able to make a cup of tea and get outside with the beds still down. There are three of us: me, DH and almost 4yo DS, who looks like he's going to grow up tall.

MrsHoarder Tue 16-Apr-13 13:16:40

Quenelle its set up to sleep 2 adults and 2 children. There is a double bed which is unfolded from the sofa which faces the sliding door. There is then a kitchen area then right against the back door is a narrow set of bunks which fold away as bedding cupboards in the day.

The double is big enough for baby ds to comfortably cosleep. Also ours is an ex-ambulance so has 2 travelling seats in the back (either die of the sliding door). This means that there are 2 seats in the front and its possible to get out through the front rather than opening the sliding door to keep warm air in at night.

Quenelle Tue 16-Apr-13 13:38:44

Thanks MrsHoarder. Did you do the conversion yourselves? Was it difficult/expensive/time consuming?

MrsHoarder Tue 16-Apr-13 14:28:59

We didn't do it ourselves I'm afraid, bought it from eBay last autumn. DH has spent a lot of time improving it though, although my perception of a lot of time will be skewed by having a PFB. A lot of it is done with Ikea (cupboard doors, mattresses, lighting) but I have no feel for how much it would cost to do.

Quenelle Tue 16-Apr-13 14:31:31

Thanks again MrsHoarder. I think we're going to go for it. We've wanted one for so long and we won't get one any other way.

MrsHoarder Tue 16-Apr-13 14:52:48

I can recommend having a look on eBay, we were going to do our own pre-DS and realised we weren't going to have time for the next few years. The cost of the campervan wasn't much more than we'd been looking to pay for a van to adapt ourselves, with a lot less work.

colleysmill Tue 16-Apr-13 20:30:07

Auction sites can be a really good place to start (we bought ours off ebay) but having read around a bit from people much more "in the know" you need to be a bit savvy.

One thing I've learnt is that the angle and the photos that are posted might not always include the bits you really need to know (in the case of t25's there are certain critical areas for rust) so if you can't view always ask the seller for further photos. Viewing in person is ideal but not always easy - we viewed a few before we bought ours and test drove the ones we thought might be "goers" I still tend to think we were quite lucky giving we were slightly "green behind the gills".

Course as viva pointed out it doesn't prevent future problems but knowing what you're getting is a good start.

badguider Wed 17-Apr-13 17:14:47

We're in the process of having a Vauxhall Vivaro converted. Our van is I think 4/5yrs old with just under 50,000 miles on the clock. We wanted a reliable engine and decent fuel consumption.

1987 is really quite old... it's 26 years! I wouldn't be confident enough in my roadside mechanics or dealings with mechanic garages to have a van that old.

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