The wrong kind of rot

Discussion in 'Buying a VW Camper' started by rustbucket, Jun 15, 2016.

  1. Baysearcher

    Baysearcher [secret moderator]

    The good thing about them is they're not rare. There are loads for sale all the time. If you look at one that isn't right, just move on to the next. Apart from a bit of time and travel it won't have cost you anything!
    mgbman likes this.
  2. Or do what I did
    got fed up looking and bought one that looked OK only to find it had every bodge known
    mgbman and JamesLey like this.
  3. All i can say is Buy cheap Pay twice ....and along with hard work .
    Not saying mind you might find a bargain , it does happen ....might be a bit of a wait .
  4. I mentioned the red/white pop top on ebay asking around £18,000, as an illustration of what the van looks like, the ad wording vs mot history.

    You do have to be careful and be aware of the pitfalls. We don't want you to throw away your hard earned cash on a dud.
  5. I wonder if people buy them. Have a couple of years fun and then sell them on having never lifted the bonnet. They stick it in the local garage for a quick service and mot once a year and have no idea it's a rolling death trap. If you read half the ads they barely mention the van. It's all about what a lovely family bus she's been.

    I saw one last week on the m25. Smashed to feck. Pushed off the road. Over the barrier and up the embankment. Three fire engines. Two ambulances etc. I wouldn't fancy that in a rusty filler box.

    Good news is they looked like they were all out of it. Bus total loss I'd guess.
    TMac89 and mgbman like this.
  6. On the same one hour journey I also saw another one broken down at the side of the m25.

    Is God trying to tell me something?
    mgbman likes this.
  7. Baysearcher

    Baysearcher [secret moderator]

    The number of ropey ones is noticeably getting fewer and fewer.
    When I started going to Techenders about 12 years ago, there were a lot of really crusty buses there. Go now and it's like an advertisement for what can be done with time and money or simply buying right.
    As the values have gone up, people have realised its worth spending money on them.
    The flip side is the influx of shoddy "resto" places that paint them up nice and knock them out for £20k but you'd have to be a bit of a mug to fall for it. You've started in the right place by looking into the pitfalls before parting with your cash. You'd be amazed by how many don't!

    It doesn't matter if you have a good one or a bad one; you don't want to be in a proper smash in any of them. Crumple Zone? That'll be your knees.
    mgbman likes this.
  8. was that the early, red one that was on here? If so it looked smashed to feck before anyone parked it on the banking!
  9. Baysearcher

    Baysearcher [secret moderator]

    That'll be after it was ploughed into onlookers at Ninove!
  10. ironically one with a pass and some advisories or even a previous fail can be the one to buy. If you do extremely low miles between MOTs it probably isn't going to be that reliable as its not used!
  11. that's the one I meant. couldn't find the thread to put a link on!
  12. Yes all the time its my daily and I holiday away most weekends for the last seven years winter and summer, I bought a camper because I loved camping why else would I get one?
  13. Out with mine again this morning. Use it or lose it.
  14. Two weeks In Cornwall next week after a year off the road.
  15. Just been into town with the wife and kids in mine, then popped into a local 'junk' shop and come away with a nice pine chest to put blankets in. A few weeks ago I popped down to IKEA and came back with a fridge and a cooker. Useful vehicles! Also have camped locally with the family the last two weekends.

  16. No thats my boat. About £100 a race. 25 races a year plus cruising miles for 20 years ... Say £50k...

    My bus is more expensive around £1 a mile over 48000 miles including purchase, fuel, restoration , projects and maintenance.
  17. Don't start quoting maths like that! that makes Jurgy about £12 per mile at the moment!

    @rustbucket I learned to weld on a bay in the steep sloped car park of the flats I lived in, also resprayed a bay in the same car park, anything's possible even without a garage.

    A good cali or South African import in need of a bit of tidying up and an engine shouldn't break the bank, just look on the Samba for how much Bays in the states go for and add a couple of £K for importing it. But always beware some states are just as wet as here.

    Good luck, the hunt for a good one can be almost as much fun as using one.
  18. I use mine all the time too. I lived in it from last September until May. 7000 miles since Christmas. Once you've got them sorted they don't break down, ever. If you don't sort out a 40 year old van previously owned by a chain of dreamers, more fool you!
    And there's the answer to the adverts you've seen - sell the dream, not the van. If you honestly describe one rather than selling the dream, half the price or get stuck with it.
    Engine runs = engine needs a rebuild.
    I'm no mechanic = I know it's knackered and can shrug my shoulders and play innocent.
    Needs TLC = needs complete restoration.
    Etc etc.

    But keep looking, not everyone selling is a ripper offer, good busses at a fair price are out there.
  19. We were in a similar position when we bought our bus 4 years ago except we did it on a whim with no idea what we were getting into.

    We bought the first bus we saw, in fact I had never driven a VW before I drive ours! Fools I know but it has been the best thing we have done with superb weekends camping and holidays exploring France, Germany and Ireland. Yes it's a bit slow and thirsty but I would rather bumble along admiring the scenery with the sound of the boxer engine thrumming away than bomb along a motorway in a modern car or Bongo!

    Our bus was solid underneath but had a few bits of rust bubbling out of the seams. The gearbox howled and so we got a good deal. We replaced the gearbox but otherwise we have spent very little and it has never broken down. What it has received is maintenance: I bought a Haynes manual, soon realised that the Bentley manual combined with everyone on TLB was far better, and have maintained it since myself. I am no mechanic but can service it myself and know a good VW specialist for when I'm stuck.

    I regret that I have done nothing about the rusty bits other than rub it down and bung some rust primer and top coat on. I know that we will need to spend money at some point. However meanwhile I prize reliability and proper maintenance over a shiny body as the family love camping in the van regardless of the body whilst sitting at the side of motorway when we should be on holiday would soon put them off.

    All a long way of saying that you should ignore the Bongo heads and go for it, but be prepared to spend money and do learn how to maintain it.

    Good luck and ask the amazing people on this forum for all the help you require.

    Sent from my S56 using Tapatalk

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