Looking underneath - a cautionary tale

Discussion in 'Buying a VW Camper' started by zedders, Feb 21, 2014.

  1. I just look which side the steering wheel is ,everything else can be fixed .........

    Seriously I just think people get carried away with the romantic notion of summer camping and cups of tea at service stations . They need constant upkeep and money spent ...

    On the only by rust free from warm climates debate . Which is great but when it gets here chances are all the rubbers are shrunk and the first sign of rain will see it leak and rust quicker than a fat bloke eating cakes in a cake shop .i know a guy
    With a import champagne and the window rubbers have half inch gaps Under them and it's deteriorating before your very eyes ..........
    paradox and Sven like this.
  2. Totally agree. Unless it's already been done you have to budget at least £1k to spend on a hot climate import once here, quality seals, underseal etc. its also likely of have very thin and faded paint so it's not a case if jump in and drive and everything is rosy.
  3. [quote="zed, post: 608916, member: 73" It's got power steering! 1971.[/quote]
    Zed is it electric power steering?
  4. I'd
    Zed is it electric power steering?[/quote]
    It's the Litesteer column, yes electric I think. Very nice to drive I have to say and not so "in your face" as it looks in photos.
  5. On the subject of MOT's the tester is not allowed to prod. This is silly IMO. The best he can do is refuse to test it, but someone somewhere will...
  6. davidoft

    davidoft Sponsor

    Heres a similar example on prototype, with a before and after of the shininess of the van, no mot advisories for welding in the 3 years he owned it, no dodgy mots!!


    I think some MOT testers wear rose tinted spectacles too or think they are doing the owner a favour, the early bad van had mot when it came in for a tidy and still had the same MOT when it left, scary!!!
    Last edited: Feb 22, 2014
    brothernumberone likes this.
  7. foe


    Astonishing! Dispite all the warnings of "if in doubt" get somone who knows what they are doing or looking at some people still get caught short. It's such a shame. I suppose a good blagger and a friendly wink maybe people tend to forget themselves.

    I think this thread should be made a sticky!
  8. davidoft

    davidoft Sponsor

    He can tap lightly with his plastic hammer and apply light finger pressure to asses corrosion, hmm makes me wince when I think about shoving my fingers through rusty metal and slicing um to shreds
  9. :lol:
  10. The problem with imports is that people think they'll take the same time as new vans to rust, 15-25 yrs, they actually rust much quicker. If you buy an import, you need to chisel out all the hardened and cracked seam sealer and replace it with new stuff. In particular the stuff in the front and rear wheel housings and between the rear corners and battery trays. There's a import near me which has been here less than 5 years and the corners are already going.
    paradox likes this.
  11. Or even funnier

    Sheriffs badges?


    What the hell kind of movies were you watching last night?

    :lol: :lol: :lol:
    davidoft likes this.
  12. Picked up an ebay item a couple of weeks ago , bloke was ever-so-proud of his recent purchase - a tidy `71 American import .
    Looked lovely but he "couldn`t get the heating to work" so i had a quick look underneath to check everything was there and rolled back out as soon as was politely acceptable ....... What a mess - someone had the guys pants down BIG time !!
    I won`t go into detail but i was scared just rolling out from under the wreck . He bought it off an `importer` so still needed to register and MOT it ....
    I didn`t let on but he showed off his original (mostly missing) interior with broken bed hinges and tatty canvas roof - Hmmmm ..
    As i was leaving he volunteered the fact he`d shelled out 16K for this piece of Marmitee ...

    Oh dear , shows there`s still a mug or two out there but was pleased as punch and insisted it was `money in the bank - "can`t lose out on these can you mate ??" .... Eerrrmm yes !!

    OH - the heating was fine , he was trying to find the button for the blowers ...
    1973daisey likes this.
  13. The sad fact is its losers who want to try and scam people by selling them wrecks and treating them as mugs. These give everyone else a bad name.

    Regardless of whether the vehicle is registered it not it still has to be as described and on the condition as described, if not the guy you know had legal recourse.

    I for one an happy to provide references and go out of my way to correct any issues of point out any faults BEFORE and trade is done so the new owner is 100% clear about what they're buying and what they're taking on. Unfortunately for every honest seller there will be at least 3 dodgy ones
    Moons likes this.
  14. It` s double edged sword ,you find a clean example and they paid a grand for it ,I would feel like I have lost the winning lottery ticket...

    That is why when I used to get a bus in chit chat was to a minimum and I did not look anywhere else ,as I said before the money question would never enter my head, because it is sad what some naive nice people will buy...

    I speak wise words...:p
    brothernumberone likes this.

  15. all very true steve....

    good work on posting this large amount of information ,it should really be made a sticky,
    or an article to guide people what to look out for when they come here asking questions...
  16. i suppose this van in the pics was hiding a lot with the fixed on belly pans...
  17. Flattened bean cans that's a bit over the top I would use coke cans they bend easily an would fit better :D
    paradox likes this.
  18. Before I bought my import I won a twin slider on ebay. Hired a trailer and drove 150 miles to collect in the dark. Every possible nightmare to do with bays was evident. Wrong arches welded over the top so sliders didn't open past them. Rusty gutters. Rotten "new" beam holey floors, sills, chassis, outriggers etc etc etcetera!!! The guy tried to explain them all away. Needless to say I drove home with a dirty back and empty trailer £160 lighter for fuel and trailer hire.
    On top of the grot was half a paint job attempting to cover up.
    My import was a painted shell with mechanicals. No rust. Belly pans off so nothing hidden. No interior doors panels or mats/carpets so all metal exposed. I spent 45 mins underneath it looking for bargaining points/ rust (none found)
    It's now all waxoiled and dry stored
    With the asking prices not a million miles apart the fact that the wheel is on the wrong side is a small price to pay for not having to weld or paint

    Just because these vans are old people should not accept that they should be rotten or leak oil
  19. It's the Litesteer column, yes electric I think. Very nice to drive I have to say and not so "in your face" as it looks in photos.[/quote]
    I'm after a big favour, couple of measurements and a piccy, will ply you with beer at the swan in August in exchange
    1973daisey likes this.
  20. THIS^^^.....I reckon you can tell how genuine a bus is by the length of the list the owner says is wrong with it...it demonstrates they know what they're selling....

    How many POS are advertised as "blah blah blah...... just needs a bit of welding and TLC to make this into a fantastic camper" Yeah right!:rolleyes:

    Keeps you in Tea and biscuits though Zed ;)

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