Buying a motorhome

gazzeroo

Free Member
Sep 14, 2014
63
5
Norwich
Funster No
33,337
MH
Coachbuilt
Exp
I`m a newbie
Hi, I am new to motorhomes, so new in fact that I have yet to buy one. I am keen to get a swift kontiki 640 with a u shaped lounge. My budget is up to 15k. Any advise for a newbie, ie. what to look out for, what`s good or bad about this model. Or any suggestions on other motorhomes. I am a competent large van driver so size isn`t an issue, Would be grateful foe any advise
Gary
 

scotjimland

Free Member
Jul 25, 2007
32,020
29,504
.
Funster No
15
MH
.
Exp
.
Hi

Old vans.. damp is common.. and the Kontiki didn't earn the nick name Leaky Kontiki for nothing ... when you view have a good sniff, in all the cupboards, under seats etc.. if it smells musty.. walk. .

If it passes the 'musty smell test'.. get busy with a damp meter.. around windows.. along the floor where the walls meet.. not forgetting the roof / wall joint and roof area around roof lights..

Again.. any signs of damp.. walk

If it passes the damp test.. try it out, sit in the bog.. ask to see the bed assembled , try it out . ask to see everything working.. heater, water heater, fridge on Gas , etc finally ask for a test drive .. and take your time deciding.. it's always a buyers market.

If possible, take along someone who knows about motorhomes or caravans..

One last tip.. buy Jim's Motorhome Buyers Guide http://shop.motorhomefun.co.uk/product/motorhome-buyers-guide-printed/
 

Brian and Jo

LIFE MEMBER
Sep 24, 2007
2,990
6,366
oswestry,shropshire
Funster No
368
MH
A-Class N+B Arto 88F
Exp
Been motorhoming for 15yrs.had an American RV for 7yrs,Now got a Niesmann Bischoff Arto 88F
hi there Gary and a warm welcome to MHF.choosing a motorhome is very much a personal decision.whats ok for one person is not for another.we are in the process of changing ours at the moment and im sure our choice would not suit everyone.take your time and make sure the layout works for you.as always Jim,s (scotjimland) advice is spot on.there is loads out there so choose wisely.good luck.;).keep us posted.
brian and jo
 

Hymie

LIFE MEMBER
Nov 29, 2013
716
819
Essex
Funster No
29,215
MH
Classic Hymer B564
Exp
Since 1981
>>>>Hi

Old vans.. damp is common.. and the Kontiki didn't earn the nick name Leaky Kontiki for nothing ... when you view have a good sniff, in all the cupboards, under seats etc.. if it smells musty.. walk. .

If it passes the 'musty smell test'.. get busy with a damp meter.. around windows.. along the floor where the walls meet.. not forgetting the roof / wall joint and roof area around roof lights..

Again.. any signs of damp.. walk

If it passes the damp test.. try it out, sit in the bog.. ask to see the bed assembled , try it out . ask to see everything working.. heater, water heater, fridge on Gas , etc finally ask for a test drive .. and take your time deciding.. it's always a buyers market.

If possible, take along someone who knows about motorhomes or caravans..

One last tip.. buy Jim's Motorhome Buyers Guidehttp://shop.motorhomefun.co.uk/product/motorhome-buyers-guide-printed/<<<<

Damp testers on sale in Lidl for £9.99 at the moment.

Hymie.
 

Carol

LIFE MEMBER
Oct 2, 2007
13,135
25,882
North Wales.
Funster No
519
MH
A class
Exp
14 years s Motorhome (33years caravans)
Hello Welcome to Fun, as has been mentioned Damp is the important thing to avoid. Try not to limit yourself to one van until you have had a good look around, if there are only two of you no point in getting a van that would sleep you are not getting the most out of the space in a van, there are good vans out there but be aware of the scams on eBay , there are a lot. If in doubt ask on here. :welc:
 

LAM

Apr 23, 2014
415
289
Wiltshire
Funster No
31,104
MH
Chausson 640 Welcome
Exp
Began with the purchase of our first, ever MH in 2014
Feeling your excitement :roflmto::roflmto::rock: !!
 

Badknee

LIFE MEMBER
Aug 25, 2014
5,311
34,829
notloB
Funster No
33,046
MH
Hobby 750 tag.
Exp
Full timing for five years and loving it!
Just bought our first van, there are so many layouts it's time consuming checking them all out but loads of fun.

Good hunting.
 
OP
gazzeroo

gazzeroo

Free Member
Sep 14, 2014
63
5
Norwich
Funster No
33,337
MH
Coachbuilt
Exp
I`m a newbie
Thanks for all the advice what a friendly helpful bunch you all are, we looked at a van yesterday, 1997 Peugeot compass drifter merit 460. It's in pretty good nick, 45k on the clock. Will have full mot lot of extras. Seemed a genuinely decent bloke. Any advice on this model, things to look out for etc. On ebay so will have to bid, again advice on max value would be helpful. engine is 2.5td and no damp smells!!
Kind regards Gary
 

Scout

LIFE MEMBER
Apr 4, 2009
4,120
19,420
doncaster
Funster No
6,145
MH
Arapaho, a big scout
Exp
9 years motorhoming, a lifetime of living
Thanks for all the advice what a friendly helpful bunch you all are, we looked at a van yesterday, 1997 Peugeot compass drifter merit 460. It's in pretty good nick, 45k on the clock. Will have full mot lot of extras. Seemed a genuinely decent bloke. Any advice on this model, things to look out for etc. On ebay so will have to bid, again advice on max value would be helpful. engine is 2.5td and no damp smells!!
Kind regards Gary
dont just rely on the smell to check for damp. You need meter and learn how to use it first by practising with old bit of wood soaked. I once bought caravan for my daughter, didnt feel damp didnt smell damp, but was full of it.
 

Jim

Ringleader
Jul 19, 2007
29,043
84,255
Sutton on Sea
Funster No
1
MH
C Class Diesel RV
Exp
Since 1990
Hi Gary,

Many people decide they want a motorhome and buy quickly on eBay or from a local dealer. Only after the first few trips do they realise that the layout of the van could be much better, the shower is too small, there is no storage, no useable legal payload, the travel seats have no seatbelts, and they hate making the bed up etc etc.

Then, armed with a list of things they don't like, they visit other dealers or shows and realise there are thousands of different combinations of van and layout, after a short while, they discover their perfect van and buy it after selling the old one at a considerable loss.

Don't tie yourself down to a particular make or model, that really is not important. The layout is the biggest reason people sell their van, get that right first time and you'll save a lot of money and heartache. Please don't buy till you've done your research and know exactly what you want. Visit a few large dealers, or better still visit large motorhome shows where you'll be able climb all over in and out of hundreds of motorhomes and this will firm up your ideas of exactly what you want. Exciting times, best of luck (y)
 
Jun 6, 2014
124
173
North Wales
Funster No
31,847
MH
Low profile
Exp
Since 2007
Take your time looking ,don't rush we took about 18 months before we bought our firs van ,take the advice given on here,damp is a big problem with older vans,but buy one that suits your needs,and your budget,once bought your stuck with it ,have fun looking and hope you find a good one.
 
OP
gazzeroo

gazzeroo

Free Member
Sep 14, 2014
63
5
Norwich
Funster No
33,337
MH
Coachbuilt
Exp
I`m a newbie
Thanks for all the advise and the warm welcomes, I am noy specifically looking for a Kon tiki, its just that it was advertised locally and we went and had a look. Unfortunately it didn.t get passed the drive by test. We are looking at a Compass Drifter 360/e Merit on a peugot 2.5 td 1995. Any advise on what to look out for would be much appreciated
 
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