Advice please . (1 Viewer)

Mr.alan

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Feb 23, 2019
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58,724
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Just looking
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I’m a newbie
Hi all
I am hoping some of you may be able to help ...
Firstly a bit about me - I’m 59 .. been looking at static caravans ( but can not justify getting one particular because of the site fees)
So decided to look for a small camper van - I do mean small... My two in mind are the Nissan Nv200 or the Vw caddy Max.
There will only be myself and wife using it.
I want a vehicle I can use as a every day car too .. so hence why I have chosen the likes of the Nissan and the VW. ( I only average around 6000k a year .
My questions are - which would make the best campervan- The NV200- or the VW Caddy ... also would you suggest I buy a nice van and have it converted ... or is it better /cheaper to buy an all ready converted van? ... I have been to see one company who does conversions... and I thought the finish was poor ( I am a cabinet maker and I use to fit out narrow boats) I can here you all say well why don’t you convert a van yourself... and to be honest I’d love too but .... I know sod all about the best way to lay out a van .. no nothing about electrics or gas ... anyhow I look forward to your reply’s - Thanks in advance .
 

MisterB

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Feb 25, 2018
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enough to know i shouldnt touch things i know nothing about ....
Look for a base vehicle that already has a pop up roof. A lot if japanese imports come fitted with them. We had a honda stepwagon which was great but if i was going to build my own i would consider the nissan elgrand. You can get ideas for layouts from all over the net and you could pay someone to do the bits you cant
 
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Mr.alan

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Feb 23, 2019
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I’m a newbie
I was seriously considering a elgrand or alphard as they are luxurious... but ...
they seem to be all petrol - as I would be using the vehicle as my every day vechicle too the fuel costs would outway the gain .
 

mikebeaches

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Feb 22, 2010
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Rapido V68 Van Conversion
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Since 2009
I was seriously considering a elgrand or alphard as they are luxurious... but ...
they seem to be all petrol - as I would be using the vehicle as my every day vechicle too the fuel costs would outway the gain .
It's true, a lot of them are petrol - my son has one and loves it.

But there are one or two diesels around, it's just a case of hunting them down. Suspect they are a bit like hens teeth, but still worth searching. Don't think they stay on the market for long.

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MisterB

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Feb 25, 2018
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enough to know i shouldnt touch things i know nothing about ....
Have it converted to lpg and cut fuel cost by at least 40%. Large initial outlay but you could get your onboard/domestic lpg sorted at the same time. On board lpg will save on cost but it will be a LONG time before it paid for itself, whereas converting to run on lpg will pay for itself after 2 or 3 years depending on mileage. Downside of lpg conversion though is you cant use eurotunnel.
 
Dec 30, 2017
141
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North Devon
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Mazda Bongo or Ford Freda, same vehicle different name. Lots of different conversions. Diesel or petrol. Diesel not very economical as old technology.
 

MisterB

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Feb 25, 2018
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enough to know i shouldnt touch things i know nothing about ....
Mazda Bongo or Ford Freda, same vehicle different name. Lots of different conversions. Diesel or petrol. Diesel not very economical as old technology.
I'm not a fan of bongos, purely on the fact that you have to get out of the cab to get into the accomodation area unless you fancy climbing over the engine. Plenty of people are more than happy with them though !
 

Minxy

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Aug 22, 2007
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Since 1996, had Elddis/Swift/Rapido/Rimor/Chausson MHs. Autocruise/Globecar PVCs/Compactline i-138
Before you go the whole hog and convert one, I'd buy a good older used one to see if you like it as not everyone takes to the MH way of life. If you spend wisely you'll get your money back (and more).
 

MisterB

LIFE MEMBER
Feb 25, 2018
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enough to know i shouldnt touch things i know nothing about ....
Before you go the whole hog and convert one, I'd buy a good older used one to see if you like it as not everyone takes to the MH way of life. If you spend wisely you'll get your money back (and more).
Though of course you might try it and not like it purely based on the layout, so it really is swings and roundabouts. Minxy girl does make a valid point though about perhaps 'testing the waters'. Have you thought of hiring one or borrowing one if you have a VERY good friend.

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ECG

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Jun 18, 2016
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Attleborough Norfolk
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I’m going through the same dilemma. I’ve sold my Motorhome to downsize to a campervan and spent the last few months looking around and reading everything I could get my hands on. I’ve decided on a Bongo but, if there were two of me (!) Id probably get the Toyota Alphard. It has brilliant reviews and is stunning. It was too big for me for an everyday vehicle as I want to get rid of the car as well.
Initially, I wanted a Diesel engine but then I realised that I wouldn’t be able to drive the van into cities here and abroad. I’ve found a few adverts for diesel vans for sale in London because they are not LEZ compliant.
I reckon that the savings on not having two vehicles to run (and the depreciation) will offset the increased petrol cost. Hope this helps.
 
Jan 27, 2018
2,709
2,179
Northampton
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52,151
MH
Rapido & Bongone
I've recently dowgraded from my bongo to a new Rapido. I shed a tear when she eventualy drove away, the first car ive ever sold, but a real practical motor 4x4 deisel never got stuck camping. A modern classic? Sold it for £600 more than i paid for it 6 years ago. But search for a good one, beware of tin worm mechanicals easier to sort out, 300000km not a prob even 4000000 documented.
One of the 1st grey import mpvs and thus lots of info and support out there.
Ps an inch narrower and shorter than my old A6, so easy to park.
 

Robmac

Free Member
Jun 13, 2012
193
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Wyboston, Bedfordshire
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Renault Master self build
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On second van now since 2012
Myself, I would go for the NV200 as I have seen one close up and the conversion was superb. Fuel economy always a bonus.

As you are a cabinet maker who has fitted out boats I would think that fitting out such a vehicle would present no problems whatsoever and you would increase the value of the vehicle making it an investment. There are plenty of examples online if you Google 'small campervan conversions' and so lots of ideas to steal. There are also lots of options such as awnings, toilet tents, 12V camping showers etc. to make a small van more liveable so the onus could be on making the sleeping/cooking arrangements the main priority.

I would love to buy a smaller van and benefit from the economy and ease of parking in small places. Missus says 'No!' :(

Good luck.
 
Oct 7, 2019
173
474
Funster No
65,001
MH
Burstner td590 lyseo
Exp
campervan for 5 years, motorhome since May 19
My questions are - which would make the best campervan- The NV200- or the VW Caddy ...
Neither,
I would say the Renault trafic makes the best campervan and strangely I have one for sale:>)

'64 plate (new shape) Diesel 40 mpg 39000 miles
Diesel heater and cooker
50" integrated projector and screen
sleeps 4 (poptop)
rib bed, sca roof
towbar
solar panel
alloys
mint condition
ideal as a second car and easy to park

pm me if anyone is interested and apologies for shameless thread hijack :>)

Graydo
 

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