This just got very complicated

Discussion in 'Introduce Yourself' started by TheWM, Feb 24, 2015.

  1. TheWM

    TheWM Read Only Funster

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    Hi there,

    I'm 35 and got two kids (3 & almost 1), and a couple of weeks ago my missus decided to give me the green light to go looking for a motorhome after I fell in love with the Thor 30.1 ACE that we hired in Canada for 3 weeks.

    Having owned a campervan for 10 years (sold it today, goodbye old friend) :( I assumed that getting a motorhome would be a doddle. How wrong I was.

    Our requirements are pretty straight forwards, a 4 berth motorhome with an overhead cab, rear lounge and 4 travel seats, under 6.9 metres to fit on the drive. Simples.

    Initially I was looking at an older VW T4 coachbuilt, but they don't seem to have many around that have the rear travel seats and rear lounge, like hen's teeth.

    So I widened my search, but then realised that as I'm in the London LEZ zone (by literally 10 metres), I came to the realisation that I would probably need a newer model (although not essential, if I fancy travelling back country lanes...)

    The only vehicle that seemed to match our needs in our price range was a used Autoquest 145. Some reading up on Elddis seemed to suggest that the build quality could be hit and miss.

    We discussed this and decided that, if we were going to part with lots of money, we'd rather buy something that we really wanted and would fine when the kids wanted their own beds etc...

    So, again, the only thing that seemed to meet our spec was a Swift 686 (3 beds), it's actually 2 cm longer than our drive but are guessing that it won't be a problem. Again, undertook research and among other things, saw a thread on here about Swift. Whilst I acknowledge that generally you only hear negative reviews when things go wrong - it appears that there is a problem with some Swifts and the consensus appears to be caveat emptor.

    I'm so confused and after lots of late nights researching and trying to figure out what to get, I appear to be no closer to getting something that will work for us. I feel like calling the chap up who bought my van and telling him to turn around and come back.:unsure:

    So, whilst this is a 'hello!' post, it's more of a HELP (me save my sanity).

    Anyone know of something that may suit our requirements, either new and judging by some posts, European, or early 90's and petrol to meet the LEZ requirements.

    I'd also like to add, this place has already been a great resource, so thanks to the people that set it up and all you contributors :D
     
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  2. Janine

    Janine Funster Life Member

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    Welcome to the Fun!

    Someone sensible will be along in a moment to help you :)
     
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  3. jockaneezer

    jockaneezer Funster

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    Sorry, can't help with the choice but welcome all the same !
     
  4. irnbru

    irnbru Funster Life Member

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  5. DP_JAY

    DP_JAY Funster Life Member

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    As I understand it if registered after 2002 at less than 3500kg it should be no problem.
    Older or heavier vehicles are a different problem.

    https://tfl.gov.uk/forms/16063.aspx
     
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  6. MikeD

    MikeD Funster

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    We spent a lot of time driving around the major dealers (who hold large stocks of all sorts of vans) looking before we made a decision.

    Twelve months and around 6000 miles, as far north as Wakefield and south as Portsmouth.

    Then we bought at a fairly local smaller dealer who is great for after sales service (y):D
     
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  7. TheWM

    TheWM Read Only Funster

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    Thanks Jay.

    I read up about that too, and currently under 3.5t it will be fine, for now. We are pretty sure that this will change, the suggestion is that it will need be Euro 5 rated to pass in the next 2-3 years, although this is all conjecture as there is no real guidance coming out that will assist anyone.
     
  8. f6c

    f6c Funster

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    Welcome aboard;)
     
  9. flatpackchicken

    flatpackchicken Funster Life Member

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    :welc::active: carry on searching mate good luck,,,
     
  10. TheWM

    TheWM Read Only Funster

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    Hi Mike, thanks for your reply.

    This is another dilemma, I simply don't have the time currently to go travelling looking for the right motorhome, insomuch that I regularly have to look after the kids. I have; however, gone around a 686 and we both loved the layout - but I do want to speak to a local dealer and have a chat. There's no real substitute for having a face to face discussion with an expert.

    Do you mind me asking who you went to?
     
  11. DP_JAY

    DP_JAY Funster Life Member

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    You'll probably be ready to change vans by then any way, failing that you could find storage outside the LEZ as it's not far.
     
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  12. TheWM

    TheWM Read Only Funster

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    Yeah, we considered that and I could get an A Class too :D. The missus is not up for that as we often on a Friday night just decide to drive off. She doesn't want the hassle of loading unloading etc...
     
  13. Bertie Bassett

    Bertie Bassett Read Only Funster

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    A warm Welcome from Wales and Good Luck with your search!(y)
     
  14. maison

    maison Funster

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    Welcome.

    As one of the people on this Forum that entered negative comments regarding Swift I would offer the following.

    My present Swift was one of a batch that was badly designed and, therefore, suffered from rotting floors. That was repaired .

    However, I have now owned three Swift M /H s, ( among others), and have just ordered a brand new one. I would not do that if I had any serious reservations.

    I have also owned one of the "prestigious" brands that proved to be a disaster .

    All brands can have problems. Motorhomes are built by people not robots, so standards can vary. The most important thing is to find a good dealer who will rectify any faults, whether in a new or second hand buy. Check them out on the Internet.

    The single most important point is to find the correct layout for yourself . All other things can be altered. The basic layout you are stuck with.

    In any event, welcome to motorhoming, you will not be disappointed if you choose carefully.(y)
    :welc:
     
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  15. colinw

    colinw Read Only Funster

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    Hello and welcome , there is so much choice it can be overwhelming , but enjoy the searching and don't rush into anything . p.s. not all motorhome dealers are experts .
     
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  16. MikeD

    MikeD Funster

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    I assume you mean - who we bought off? Elite Motorhomes: http://www.elitemotorhomes.co.uk/

    There is a facility on the forum to assess dealers:

    http://www.motorhome-dealer-reviews.com/

    One dealer I know and everybody says nice things about and is a member on the forum is Johnscross motorhomes

    http://www.johnscross.co.uk/

    Peter who owns the company is a top guy and would give you straight advice. @Johns_Cross_Motorhomes

    Start a "conversation" with him. He has always been a very approachable. (y)
     
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  17. scousebird

    scousebird Funster

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    Hello :hi: What an introduction. If you haven't got time to travel around dealers then go to one of the shows. Peterborough is on soon and there'll be loads of dealers there so you could have a good look around at layouts. Importantly though you need to pay your tenner subscription to carry on posting on here and you can then ask lots of questions. You might even get some sensible answers ::bigsmile:
     
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  18. Wildbill

    Wildbill Funster

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    wouldn't bet on that :rofl:
     
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  19. tonka

    tonka Funster Life Member

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    Looking at your age, unless you have passed another test then are you not restricted to 3500kg anyway ??? Unless you just managed to get in before the 1997 changes.
    That could rule out many motorhomes...
     
  20. Puddleduck

    Puddleduck Funster

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    hello.jpg and welcome.jpg

    I would suggest storing the van outside the LEZ area if you can and don't forget for sleeping you can always get cabbunks.

    http://www.cabbunk.co.uk/

    I have no knowledge of the company but the idea looks good.

    Don't rule out different layouts..... they might just work for you at least in the short term. You may well decide to change your van in two or three years as your needs change. We are now on van three, no because we made any mistakes in layout but because out family dynamics and interests changed over the years. We already know pretty much what we will change the present van to when the time comes (a few years down the line we hope)

    hello head duck.jpg
     
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