Do we take the plunge ???

Discussion in 'Introduce Yourself' started by razdaz66, Dec 29, 2011.

  1. razdaz66

    razdaz66 Read Only Funster

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    Hi

    We are 40 something no kids couple considering taking the plunge and getting a motorhome, looking at vans around the 12k mark which appears to the the lower starting price for a reasonable van. we ate located in Kent and therefore our searches are restricted to the net.

    We would not be looking at holidays at present but starting off with short breaks and long weekends. We like sporting events like racing and motor racing and know that it would be a perfect opportunity to get to camp overnight.

    Be happy for any advice for a newbie, the vans we looked at so far are a swift sun dance and a Elldis autostradus around 1998-2000 and a older hymer.

    Vikki
     
  2. billy

    billy Read Only Funster

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    Go for it Vikkie we were in our late fifties when we got ours wish we had done it earlier.
    Be very carefull what you buy watch out for the dreaded damp.
    If you have any questions there are plenty people on here with a wealth of knowledge ask any question and you will get an answer no matter how daft you think the question is.

    billy
     
  3. Ralph-n-Bev

    Ralph-n-Bev Funster

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    You need to travel to lots of places and check out all the layouts IMO.
    Once you have decided which layout suits you both the best, look at as many as you can in person. Lay on the beds , sit on the loo, stand and pretend to wash and bend down in the shower. Imagine preparing food on the work surface provided.
    You cant smell a picture. Believe you me , there are plenty smelly , damp sheds about. We were suprised at how even some dealers had some terrible examples. Air freshners stuck around trying to disguise it.

    We ended up upping our original budget and digging a lot deeper than we expected , because we were not happy with the quality and condition of what was on offer in our original price bracket. We were used to a good quality caravan , and felt like we were taking a backward step.
    But we managed to get it right 1st time and love our motorhome with a passion:Smile:
    Bev
     
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  4. razdaz66

    razdaz66 Read Only Funster

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    Thank you both for your kind comments and advice, and a couple of pointers in the right direction. It does look like we are going to look at things harder than we orig thought. We did post up a couple of examples of vans we had looked at on line and not sure of your thoughts.

    He likes the look of the hymer as far as clean lines but aware the doors are build for euro market. Not sure what the opinions are, we have found a link to a van review book covering 1999 to 2003.

    Speak soon.
     
  5. ROB1CHELSEA1

    ROB1CHELSEA1 Funster

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    Me and the wife are in our early 40s and have just bought our first motorhome, we checked out a couple of dealers for vans but was quite dissapointed with what they had to offer us for the budget we had £15000.
    We eventually found the make and model we wanted and googled it to see what was available, after about 2 months looking we decided on one we liked and headed off to wales to view it, we are very happy with our 1999 autocruise valentine and have had many weekends away in her.:thumb:

    Good luck in your search Rob & Jane:thumb:

    BE AWARE OF THE LOW EMISSIONS ZONE :Angry: we had to fork out another £3000 :Doh:
     
  6. hilldweller

    hilldweller Funster Life Member

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    We are booked into Silverstone, again, we will be outside Jerez in March. Monza has an incredible campsite right next to the main straight.

    So Do It.

    Old Hymers, if looked after are the bees knees.
     
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  7. lorger

    lorger Funster

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    Hi my first advice would be to go for it we are in our early forties and have had van for about 4 years now best thing we ever did for us and our daughter we have seen places we would never even have thought of going to.

    As for makes of vans we have an elddis on an 06 and although its classed as a entry level van it does us great. If you listen to folk on here they say the old hymers are amongst the best build vans.

    As for layout do as Bev said try everything out dont be afraid to lie on beds try shower (wouldn't recommend getting naked though) and cooker make sure they all work. I would go to dealers and look in all different vans even ones out of your rice range so you have a better idea of the layout you want. You have to imagine being away for a weekend and its chucking it down ( I know that doesn't happen in Kent to often):Rofl1: and you both end up stuck indoors for a few hours, make sure you can lounge out and both see the tv i know that sounds sill but you'd be surprised at some van layouts and how impractical they are.

    Good luck and feel free to ask loads of questions
     
  8. billy

    billy Read Only Funster

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    We looked for over twelve months at various vans before we bought ours and we have seen quite a lot that seemed quite nice on the internet but it is only when you see them close up that you find they are not as good as you thought we have been disappointed quite a lot having travelled many miles to look at them.
    Don't be in a hurry to buy one look at as many as you can you will know when the right one comes along as we did expensive mistake if you get it wrong and you will be stuck with it.

    If you have any doubts when looking at a van walk away

    I have no experience of the ones you have mentioned but the hymers are considered to be quite good vans.

    You need to find the layout that suits you best all are different as Ralph-n-Bev have said try the van out.

    Also be aware of internet scams.

    Pay the £10 subscription to this site it will be the best £10 you will spend you will get access to everthing this site has to offer
     
  9. Johno

    Johno Read Only Funster

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    Hi and welcome Vikki

    I can't improve on the advice already given, the only thing I would add is have you considered hiring a MH for a few days or so just to ensure it is for you, I know the hiring fees are hefty but nothing compared to buying into a lifestyle that may not suit you.:cry:

    I also live in Kent and there are a few dealers around give them a visit and try out different makes and models, if not fixed bed see how easy or difficult it is to make up the bed as this is something you will be doing every day and awkard beds become a pain in the bottom, look in all cupboards for damp and ensure that all appliances are functioning correctly as these can be expensive to replace.
    Sit in the van without the dealer being there to get the feel of it, this also gives you the opportunity to poke into all the nooks and crannies without the salesman trying to divert your attention from possible problems, bear in mind no matter how much psychology the salesman uses to make you think he is your friend he is only interested in making a sale and getting your money. I apologise for being an old cynic but experience gained in the 30 or so years I have been partaking of this hobby is to blame
    All this aside it is a great way of spending your leisure and will become a lifestyle if your not careful.:thumb:

    Good luck John
     
  10. Wildman

    Wildman Read Only Funster

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    Hi and welcome to the fun, no hesitation, go for it. what took you so long to think about it. Hee hee.
    As to the van The older hymers/tabbert/knus etc (German built) are the ones to go for as these are built for a Northern European winter, whilst the Brit models are built for a southern European summer. The insulation and build qualiity is far superior. There are quite a few early 80's Hymers out there as good as the day they left the factory. The Merc engine whilst using more fuel is good for nearly a million miles and can be repaired in any country of the world. The fiat has trouble getting spares when its only a few years old. But having said that both are reliable and on the whole trouble free engines. Motorhomes tend to have very low milages compared to a car and a 20 year old van may well have under 40k miles on it.
    As to the LHD, you are used to the roads in the UK and its an easy adjustment to make, when you go abroad everything works in your favour so I would definately see it as a plus rather than a negative. So first find the layout you require (room for both of you to lounge about watching TV). Check that everything works. If told sorry gas bottle is empty insist on it being replaced so you can check to see everything is working.
    Gas detectors, and damp meters are available on ebay these days at silly cheap prices, so get one of each and learn to use it. Beware of vans with lots of air freshner, it is disguising damp or rot. Avoid anything with a leak problem even if you are sure you can fix it, as that leak may have been there for some years and the resulting rot not so easy to fix.
    Enjoy the search, and ask as many questions as you want on here.
    Good luck.
     
  11. madbluemad

    madbluemad

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    So what, that's nothing to worry about.
    Jim
    :Smile:
     
  12. MET

    MET Read Only Funster

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    What's the low emissions zone ??

    :Sad:
     
  13. pappajohn

    pappajohn Funster Life Member

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    Hi Met....looks like your 5 free post have run out so you'll need to subscribe to carry on posting.

    Low emission zone....

    this is a daily charge, currently £200 per day i believe, to enter London (roughly within the M25) with a diesel engined vehicle which doesn't meet certain standards....and there's no way to avoid it due to number plate recognition.

    petrol engines aren't affected.

    anything more than a few years old will probably not meet the criteria and must have special filters fitted to the exhaust system.....or stay away from London, but more cities are climbing on the bandwagon and will be introducing the charges.

    current price to have the filters fitted is around £3000
     
  14. Diabalo

    Diabalo Funster

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    Hi Vikki,

    One word go for it (oh bugger that's three)

    It's a great way of enjoying your leisure time, do a meet or two and you will pick up new friends, especially if you'r plying them with drink:Rofl1:

    We live in Kent so if you need any help or advice please ask.:thumb:
     
  15. pappajohn

    pappajohn Funster Life Member

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    before we bought our current motorhome,we looked at many on the web but nothing ticked all the box's.

    we actually went to view 2 others......one in Clitheroe, Lancashire, and the other in Kettering, northants.

    A 300 mile round trip and a 400mile round trip, so you really should be prepared to travel.

    we eventually bought one more local to us at Selby, North Yorks.......100 mile round trip.
     
  16. taffybloke

    taffybloke Funster

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    Hi and Welcome. As already said, take your time and look at as many as you can.

    Why not pop along to Johns Cross site (his advert is in the column on the right and he is a member here).

    I think he is in your part of the world and seeing some in the flesh is better than just on the web.

    Good luck with your search.


    Mike
     
  17. JOHNSTEY

    JOHNSTEY Read Only Funster

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    Hi. I find it wierd how people get hung up on the doors thing on euro vans.Exactly what is the problem? Whatever it is we have never experienced it.I would agree with the post that says look at as many vans as meet your base criteria and be prepared to travel to get the right one.We travelled a round trip of over 1,000 miles looking at whats available before we got our (second) van.It's an expensive business so get it right first time if possible! A couple of tanks of diesel is a lot cheaper than changing a few months down the line! :thumb:
     
  18. mikebeaches

    mikebeaches Funster

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    As others have mentioned, in our opinion, the habitation door being on the European side (UK offside) is absolutely no problem whatsoever. Both of our vans - including a new one last year - have had the door on the UK offside. Works fine.

    Go for it.
     
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  19. Ralph-n-Bev

    Ralph-n-Bev Funster

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    Do you know , i never thought about it , but ours is too .
    I suppose the only problem is if you get out through it , onto a busy road .
    Fortunately that's not something you would have to do very often.
     
  20. Mr Colpot

    Mr Colpot Funster

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    As others have said - Go for it! Our first MH was a 1994 Hymer and was a good start for us. Getting it right first time, IMHO is almost impossible - we have had 4 MH's all with our perfect layout!
    Look around, as people have said, to find the right layout and travel as far as you can if necessary - we are in West Sussex and have bought in Devon, East Sussex, Birmingham and Maidenhead.
    You will find plenty of advice/encouragement on here!
     
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