First Motorhome

Discussion in 'The Beginner' started by sjoyce666, Aug 4, 2016.

  1. sjoyce666

    sjoyce666 Funster

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    Hello all, first post here as we are looking to purchase our first motorhome

    We are a family of 5. 2 adults and 3 children aged 6, 4 and 4

    I have been looking on AutoTrader, eBay, Gumtree and a few local Motorhome dealers websites for motorhomes that would suit our requirements and wondered if anyone could help out with models that may meet what we are after

    We basically require 6 full seatbelts and we like the layouts with rear lounges as the children can sleep up front on the dinette and the over cab bed and we can use the rear lounge while they are asleep and convert that to a bed when ready to sleep ourselves

    I have read various threads on here about the hassle of making up the beds all the time with a rear lounge but that is going to be a necessary evil with the size of our family. I have also read about the weight limits and fitting all of us in a 3.5ton motorhome. I will do the C1 test if required but I haven't found many motorhomes that use a stronger chassis to require this and understand with us all on board we will not have a great deal of weight left for "stuff"

    We will be buying used, probably from a dealer as it will be our first motorhome. Budget up to £30k but would like to be closer to the £20k end if possible. Looking at the ones for sale they seem to be between £20k and £30k and up to 10 years old

    The models I have found tend to be Elddis, Swift, Compass and a couple of Bessacarr. I need to do some more research into the build quality of these so if anyone has anything to add please do. I have also found a Bailey and a Dethleffs but these are right at the top of and a little over the budget

    Scott
     
  2. MH 55 FUN

    MH 55 FUN Funster

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  3. jollyrodger

    jollyrodger Funster Life Member

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  4. The Dude

    The Dude Funster

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  5. mercianman

    mercianman Funster

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    Hi. We were in a similar situation to you an eventually went with a swift 696 which has 2 bunk beds at the back. This has a weight of 3650 though. We also looked at the roller team zefiro 675 (3.5t) which also has bunk beds. We tried the lounge at the back in some hire vans but rapidly lost the will to live mucking about with beds so went for fixed beds instead. They also have an added bonus of a "garage" at the back for kids bikes and other stuff. Try before you buy is my advice :)
     
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  6. TerryL

    TerryL Funster

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    Hi and :welcome3:

    You really need to go out and look at different layouts "in the flesh" to see what suits, or not as the case may be. A decent sized dealer with a variety of different vehicles is ideal, although the bigger shows are useful too. Imagine yourselves living in each one, sleeping, cooking, bathroom etc. plus storage for necessary gear. When we were looking we made a list of "needed", "would like" "don't want" and kept a note of each one we looked at until we found the right one. It's worth doing because getting it wrong can turn out to be expensive and may possibly put you off.

    A good start would be to get a copy of Jim's book "Buying a Motorhome". Go to Jims Shop.

    Good luck in your search and don't to forget to ask away - there's no such thing as a stupid question.
     
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  7. CWH

    CWH Funster Life Member

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  8. Popeye

    Popeye Funster

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    When I first looked around Motor-Homes in your sort of price range I too had occasional need for six seat belts and found one in an Autotrail Scout where a dealership had fitted two more additional seat belts in the rear lounge so I know it can be done. This one doesn't have it and I don't think I've ever seen another one but then I haven't been looking.

    How about this then.......

    edit. ps. sorry, I see it is now sold.
     
  9. Carol

    Carol Funster Life Member

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  10. sjoyce666

    sjoyce666 Funster

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    Thank you for all the replies

    We plan on hiring one before we buy if possible to try out the layout and check we can all fit in there and keep under weight etc...

    We think we are pretty settled on the rear lounge idea as it will give us the maximum space. I understand the fixed beds idea but I think they take up too much space and the children prefer to use their scooters than bikes so we could get away with smaller storage at the rear and under the motorhome

    Scott
     
  11. wigster

    wigster Funster

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    :welcome4:. Best of luck with your search its all about compromise . Be very wary of dealers telling you van is 3500k though, insist on any van you buy be taken to a weighbridge . Too many vans i reckon are sold not fit for purpose weight wise . Damp is also a concern ,get an independent damp check done, its a van killer . Just my opinion sounds like im a doomsayer im not .

    Best of luck you will love the life (y)
     
  12. mercianman

    mercianman Funster

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    Don't forget with the put away beds you'll need to store five sets of bedding somewhere as well as all your other stuff. So make sure there is enough storage space for all the duvets, sheets and pillows and all the other stuff you need. If you need more living space then you could look at an awning. We haven't needed one yet though. Good luck with your search it's been brilliant for us.
     
  13. sjoyce666

    sjoyce666 Funster

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    We are very wary of the 3500kg limit so will be checking that on all vans. We will look at getting independent checks carried out and be looking to take someone with us that has several years of motorhome experience to give us their feedback on things which we may miss as first timers

    The bedding is a good point and obviously impacts on the weight. We would probably add an awning if the motorhome we buy doesn't already have one and will probably go for a Safari Room

    Scott
     
  14. kaasbroodje

    kaasbroodje Funster

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    This layout would work well for a family, local to you, so perhaps worth a look ?https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/222184258487

    I'd also suggest Laika 3002 kreos, Hymer 684 or 682.
    Rimor make several similar models, although build quality is debatable.

    Welcome to fun and good luck with your search !
     
  15. sjoyce666

    sjoyce666 Funster

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    Thank you for the reply but we set on the rear lounge layout. The linked motorhome also doesn't have the required number of seatbelts to transport all of us

    We will check out the other models suggested

    Scott
     
  16. carhil

    carhil Funster

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    We just went through a similar process and settled on the Eldiss 180 as we felt it ticked more of the boxes than any other model. We looked at loads but always ended up sitting back in the 180.
    A rear lounge was important for use too and realistically, is it really any hassle moving a few cushions about at the end of the day? Nope :)
    Having a fixed bed is wasted living space IMO and most of the ones we looked at have chamfer shaved off the mattress ! Not good if youre tall and sleep on that side.

    The 180 has full six belted seats though we dont need that, we just wanted a roomy van and can use that area for a quick pit stop chow downs :) Some of the other vans we looked at had jump seats hidden in the lounge seating. Good idea, but I wouldnt want to sit on one for more than ten minutes. Kids would probably be ok but teens may get fidgety.

    Hope you find your ideal van Scott.
     
  17. sjoyce666

    sjoyce666 Funster

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    Thank you for the reply carhil

    The 180 has come up in our search too both in Elddis and also Compass guises. The other one that has popped up alot is the Swift 630L

    The major worry in all of this is the 3500kg weight limit as with 5 of us and enough for a week away we will be close to the weight limits of the motorhome

    Scott
     
  18. SwissBob

    SwissBob Funster

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    Twins eh? I feel your pain :).

    We always said we wouldn't change them for the world but we wouldn't wish it on anyone :D. Ours are in their 20's now and still costing money.
     
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  19. f6c

    f6c Funster

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    Welcome aboard;)
     
  20. Theonlysue

    Theonlysue Funster Life Member

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    You can get mh with bunk beds as well.
     
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