New searcher still looking.

Discussion in 'The Beginner' started by flyboyprowler, Sep 6, 2013.

  1. flyboyprowler

    flyboyprowler Read Only Funster

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    As with other new buyers, I join a queue begging for advice.
    So far, we have decided we would like a fixed bed, low profile, or A class van, preferably auto, probably German built, to be kept in Spain, so LHD.
    I am particularly looking at a 2005 Hymer B640 starline, and am a bit bogged down by model numbers. Also a Dethleffs Fortero, 2006, and finally a Niesmann and Bishchoff 2004, all around the £30,000, mark, with the ford at £20,000.
    So, what do owners favor, transverse or "French" beds, and why? Front or rear wheel drive, Ford Mercedes or Fiat engines?
    We were recently let down on a purchase, as the owner decided not to sell (dubious) so I will probably buy from a dealer, with a guarantee.
    Thoughts and help much appreciated.
    Ainsley
     
  2. ourcampersbeentrashed

    ourcampersbeentrashed Funster

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    Hi and welcome to fun.

    You have Johns Cross Motorhomes nearby and they give a funster discount.

    They are very helpful and knowledgeable
     
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  3. hilldweller

    hilldweller Funster Life Member

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    Over cab or over seat is the way !!

    The amount of space a low down fixed bed takes is out of all proportion to the time spent in it. Everything else suffers.
     
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  4. Carol

    Carol Funster Life Member

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    Hello Ainsley Welcome to Motorhome Fun , not wanting to look as if I am pushing a dealer, but like our campervan hasbeentrashed has said John Cross comes highly spoken of on fun so could be worth a visit.

    If the van has a drop down bed I can never see the point of having a fixed bed as well, a waste of extra pay load.

    Whatever van you choose enjoy and keep asking that's what the forum is about.:welcomefunster
     
  5. Merle

    Merle Funster

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    Which ever you choose try to get it right for you....mistakes are expensive
     
  6. Armytwowheels

    Armytwowheels Funster Life Member

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    Hello and welcome. We are another fan of the drop down bed, an instant bed without taking up valuable floor space.

    I am sure you will find your ideal van soon.
     
  7. flyboyprowler

    flyboyprowler Read Only Funster

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    Thank you all for the input. Can I now ask what do you have in your motorhome that you cannot live without. Also, the Fiat 2.8 diesel seems to be very well used, but does anyone have views on Mercedes or Ford engines? Can any one help with guidelines as to what the Hymer model number designations mean? :Smile:
     
  8. Allanm

    Allanm Funster

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    I would just go and look at as many layouts as possible till you find one you like.
    Neither of us fancied climbing a ladder or rearranging cushions to go to bed so this ruled out the drop down or overcab beds. We both wanted a fixed bed. With this in mind, we only considered fixed bed vans with plenty of room inside for the two of us and two dogs to be couped up in comfort if we didn't want to go out( rain, cold, tired etc....)
    There was little point then looking at A class vans as most have the drop down bed, so we just looked at Low profile vans, which, luckily was the style I prefer
    I also didn't want to travel too far to buy a van, so we bought locally and bought almost our perfect van.
    I had to increase the payload and I will be modifying the under slung water tank to stop it freezing if we ever get to take the van skiing, but that's a low priority for us at the moment
    Good luck with your search, and, as others have said, give Johns Cross a chance to get you sorted with a van
    Allan
     
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  9. Armytwowheels

    Armytwowheels Funster Life Member

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    Ok, couldn't do without- or rather what sold it to us
    That lovely drop down bed.
    Separate shower
    Heating & hot water
    Fiat 2.5 turbo Diesel engine
    Easy to drive
    Steering wheels, 4 wheels etc:Rofl1:
    Biggish locker at the back

    I think the Hymer model numbers refer to the different layouts, but not absolutely sure.
     
  10. flyboyprowler

    flyboyprowler Read Only Funster

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    Thank you Allan, and good advice.
    I do like the low profile shape, and I like the idea of a fixed bed, but if a pull down, ie always made fits the bill, and leaves more cabin space for living, then that seems like a fair trade. However both French and lateral bed options seem to have their access problems, so a compromise may be the answer. Our van will be used extensively to tour Europe, so I really would like to know what users consider to be essential items! I suppose that a motorhome is generally a compromise, and " you pay for what you want" but hopefully we, like you, can get it almost right first time!
     
  11. flyboyprowler

    flyboyprowler Read Only Funster

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    Ah, so you have a Hymer, and which is yours? We are looking at an A class next week, with a rear lounge, auto, on a mercedes chasis and in supposedly good condition. Do you have any thing we need to check out, ie are they susceptible to rot, and are there any points are need to ask. Does the drop down bed remain made, and is it a problem to get into?
     
  12. Armytwowheels

    Armytwowheels Funster Life Member

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    Ours is the B564which has the side kitchen and dinette with a side bathroom inc separate shower I.e the shower is not over the loo and washbasin. This model was design for skiing with the rear locker being heated, the shelves hinge to take skis and there is a waterproof floor with drainage.

    One thing to look our for in the older Hymers in a fiat ducato base is the front cross member that holds the radiator in place. Apparently they are know to rot and ours was like rusty lace when we bought it. Colin replaced it easy enough to replace, doing the work himself and paying about £40 for the part.

    The rest is the same as any make, timing belt, service history, tyre ages etc. One thing about the older Hymers though is the build quality, 2nd to none IMO:BigGrin:

    Having said all that, ours is 18 years old so non of this may not apply if you a looking for a much younger van the van.
     
  13. flyboyprowler

    flyboyprowler Read Only Funster

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    I think our budget will stretch to around a 2005 model, but I certainly wouldn't rule out an older one if it fitted the bill. I hear that the build quality of the newer Hymers has suffered, as did Mercedes cars from around 2000 to 2008. Do you have any idea of when the Hymers started to go downhill, so to speak!
     
  14. Armytwowheels

    Armytwowheels Funster Life Member

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    I don't know when they went down hill, but some of the newer ones we have seen at shows look pretty amazing. At Malvern we looked in nearly all the Hymers but I just couldn't understand the fixed bed and drop down bed combination, very little living space in a huge van. Finding the correct layout for you is the most important thing.

    Why not get yourself to Lincoln show and spend all day looking in vans?
     
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  15. Johns_Cross_Motorhomes

    Johns_Cross_Motorhomes Trader - Motorhome & Accessory Sales

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    Hi,

    Why not spend a couple of hours on my forecourt and have a look round, coffee is free if you ask:thumb:

    Peter
     
  16. flyboyprowler

    flyboyprowler Read Only Funster

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    Sadly we live mostly in Spain, and because our choice is limited here, and a few other reasons, I prefer to get a UK registered, but LHD model. Having said that we are seeing a couple of Hymers, and a Rapido van, here in Spain, next week, , but not sure where the Rapido fits into the "quality" list. One of the Hymers is an auto, with a garage that will take my small motorbike. Also it's auto with a Mercedes chasis and engine, sadly don't know the price, and even if it is a good idea to go for a BIG 'van as a first buy. What do you think?
     
  17. Armytwowheels

    Armytwowheels Funster Life Member

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    There is a very lively Rapido v Burstner fraternity on here who will no doubt be along to argue the pros and cons of each make. In the meantime, and in my very limited motorhome experience, I think both of those makes sit up there in the 'good quality' market. Along with RMB (sitting at the top) and I think Knaus is a good make too.

    As for size - if you are confident driving a bigger van and can afford the fuel then go for it. Our criteria was a van big enough to have the creature comforts but small enough to squeeze down country lanes to get in to the back and beyond of wherever. Colin wanted a diesel turbo engine and power steering, oh and a fridge for his beer!!

    Where's the Rapido owners when you need them - SHIFTZZ, MO help! :shout:
     
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  18. weekenders

    weekenders Funster Life Member

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    Hymer 584

    We also have a Hymer 584 A class model,1999 year, it has a drop down bed, separate shower and toilet, back end kitchen, long lounge settee and fixed table which extends with 3 captain seats (2 for sitting at table), very roomy loungy area, the made up bed is great at night you just pull down and climb in!! it's a 2.8 turbo diesel and seems very economical.

    Rapido's/Burstner/Cathago/Concorde's are all good quality made van's
     
  19. flyboyprowler

    flyboyprowler Read Only Funster

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    I will certainly check out the others that you mention, shame no one came back with a view on the Enlagh.
     
  20. old-mo

    old-mo Funster Extra Special Life Member

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    I`m here... :thumb:

    Well chuffed and pleased.. (So far :Wink:) with my "Rapido".... :thumb::BigGrin:
     
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