Hello I'm looking for a van

Discussion in 'Buying a VW Camper' started by LewBLew, Feb 19, 2014.

  1. Hi from Hampshire (Southampton end)!

    I'm a Mini/MG man ('91 Mayfair, couple of B GTs) but have decided to go German and get a campervan as well this year as I have always wanted one... My questions are, does anyone have any for sale in the Hampshire area or surrounding counties and are there any specialists in my area?

    I've found a few online:




    Can anyone see any pitfalls with the above before I enquire? Budget is £12,000 btw - spec is RHD, bay, either fully kitted out or with money left over to do it, pop-top, as rust free as poss. Mechanics and servicing isn't a problem for me but I'm not a welder.

    Cheers :)
  2. You said you wanted a pop top but the middle is a tin top so thats out :thumbsup:
  3. Well spotted, I need to learn to read/see! o_O
  4. Have you got family etc i.e. need space in the roof to sleep? Or just need pop top for height/space? X
    Moons likes this.
  5. bernjb56

    bernjb56 Administrator

    Welcome along - I was just going to say the same as @Lord Congi. There are people on here who can give you a much better opinion than me just going from the pictures so I'll leave that to them. My advice would be to go and see as many vans as you can in the flesh. I'd also want some pictures of the engine and the underneath.
    Tiny-Pie likes this.
  6. Hey LewBLew, welcome to the dark side, my advice would be to rent one out for a weekend and see how you get on, to see what your individual requirements are for your camper, if youre using it to camp i would definitely go for a pop top for headroom,good choice there and then the fixtures and fitting like a full width bed or a 3/4 width, how much storage you will need, sink, hob, fridge etc.

    Are you hung up on prototype or late bay? as the last one is early, some say cooler looks but not as modern. Im sure there are folk on here that wouldnt mind you poking around their bus so you can get an idea of what you want? my advice would be to go to shows and write down good bits and bad bits from the busses you see and aim for that, for that budget, do not settle and dont let your head rule your heart too.

    I like the first one, refurb the stock steel wheels and get some nice domes on it will look well nice!

    good luck :)
    LewBLew and Tiny-Pie like this.
  7. Theres no camping intetrior in the 74 as well,the 72 is an early/cross over.
  8. Plus the 72 says its a devon ,the roof is devon but the bed looks like a westy.
  9. davidoft

    davidoft Sponsor

    I'm on Hayling and can advise you and do welding mechanical etc repairs, will have a look at the adds when I'm on the computer.
    LewBLew and bernjb56 like this.
  10. I'm just in the process of buying my first van.

    I looked at a LOT of vans. Big difference in the practicality you get with the different layouts - we ended up choosing the Westfalia Berlin Deluxe as the ideal format for our needs - biggest roof bed (rear hinged popup), swivel passenger seat, cooker sink and coolbox built in but still a lot of space. We also hired one like this first to be absolutely sure it was the right type.

    RHD vs. LHD was not a consideration at all for me. Prob more choice/potentially less rusty if you also look at usa imports? I'd never have a lhd sports car (drive on your own and you'd never be able to overtake anyone) but for a vw you never overtake anyway so lhd isn't really an issue IMO.
  11. I'd say the devon double top and superviking roofs are bigger than the Berlin ,the bed in the moonraker double top is as big as the Westy berlin.
    I would say the Westy Berlin is the most pratical camper conversion though,shame its LHD.
  12. Thanks for all your advice so far. I definitely need a pop-top for the sleeping upstairs & the head room.

    I guess early/late bay doesn't matter. What is the difference, or is it just the face?

    I like the 74 very much (plus it's down the road from me) but as you say, no camping interior and no money left over to put one in :( I need the camping gear - fridge, cooker etc. How much would it cost to put one in? I also agree with what brucieboy says about refurbing the wheels too.

    The 72 looks very nice as well, just a bit further away. I'm still not 100% about the differences between the conversions but it seems to have everything going for it. Plus tax free :thumbsup:
  13. I have a 74 rear westy style roof and it's so simple... I van easily set it up myself and pull down... I have plenty of space for me, partner and 2 dogs...

    I really think you should go and have a look around ar shows as people say it gives you a good idea of how these things suit different peoples needs x
    Moons and LewBLew like this.
  14. @LewBLew the 74 you're looking at there has no sleeping in roof as far as I'm aware?
  15. Moons

    Moons Moderator

    I'd look in to the differences between early (low indicators on the front) and late bays - there are differences in brakes, wheels etc.

    I'd also consider what engine - 1600 on some conversions is a slooooooooow ride, 2ltr is better power and be aware of the differences in fuel injection and carbs for complexity.

    USA import is not rust free guarantee, especially if it's been over here a while - though usually they are better for rust.

    I think a lot of the questions and advice above is spot on - at the end of the day I'd advise find a camper spec that fits you best, decide on preferred engine etc and then hunt for the best one as each can only be taken on merit.
  16. Moons

    Moons Moderator

    It has sleeping on roof as an option :)
  17. OK well that's been helpful. Just the 72 Devon in Devon fits the spec now.... or how would you go about putting sleeping in the roof of the 74, if poss?
  18. Moons

    Moons Moderator

    Why would you want to?

    You can buy very good kits such as the one @Tiny-Pie has fitted - or simply buy a converted van - in your price range there are a good few ready to use vans that need little/no work.

    Many of us here bought stuff that needed fiddling with - and there's fiddling and disheartening drudgery - I think I'd take the former every time.
    Tiny-Pie likes this.
  19. Ooh that's a loaded question.... Firstly though, welcome along. There are many differences, and probably the only way to know is to look around them. Essentially the prototype has different front and rear ends but it doesn't stop there. Plenty of information on this site re the differences etc. Obviously most people on this site prefer the later model and that is for many reasons. Later ones have better brakes (usually) better mechanicals (but then it depends if the engine is original or not) but have the option of larger engines such as the 1700 / 1800 / 2000 type 4 engine.
    Early vans can still be good. A lot will depend on what is around in what condition and at what price. Be aware that whatever bus you get, it will continue to cost you money to keep it in anything like good condition (as with all old cars).

    ^^^^^ What he says...

    As there are so many different layouts out there the best way to see is by going to a show - the Bus Types one in April may well be a good one for you to see the huge variety out there. Most owners are happy for you to get in and have a look around their vans. A lot of people also make their own interiors to suit so that's worth considering too.
    LewBLew likes this.
  20. davidoft

    davidoft Sponsor

    the one in titchefield looks to be a very very nice van, its possible to fit a pop top like @tinypie but I don't know the cost, 2-3k maybe but it can be worth it, the devon doesn't really have a sleeping space up top
    Moons likes this.

Share This Page