/ Van for camper conversion?

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AJM - on 08 Nov 2012
Looking for a van to do a camper conversion on atm. Probably medium wheel base high top, which rules out a lot of the popular smaller vans which appear on threads in the past.

Been browsing the interweb, and have found some appealing looking Merc Sprinters, Ford Transits, Vauxhall Movanos and Renault Masters.

Just wondered if anyone had any views on them really? Or any other must consider options (there's not many of them about, but things like Ivecos or other far-eastern vans I know essentially nothing about) really...?

You obviously look like you get a lot more for your money with the other 3 than a Sprinter, and the Renaults look like they're a bit cheaper for equivalent sort of age/miles than the others. but then Sprinters have a rep for going on and on, from what I've heard, Transit parts and stuff are rumoured to be cheaper because they are so ubiquitous, and so on.

If it helps, the budget is probably in the £4-5k region for the van itself, although that's not set in stone in either direction for the right thing. The vans I've been looking at range from about 2005-2008 in the most part at that sort of price.

Advice gratefully received.....

Didymus - on 08 Nov 2012
In reply to AJM:

You need to go and look at a few as they're all a bit different dimensions inside. I looked at all these vans earlier in the year and did loads of research and got a VW LT35 in the end which am really pleased with. Many people told me to avoid the Fiat, Renault, Vauxhall vans and go for German quality. I didn't like the Transits.

I think the Merc Sprinter is the best made van and very popular on the road so it's a good bet. £5k will get you a good low mileage panel van and there is loads of stuff online to help you convert it or find a local company to do it for another few £k
More-On - on 08 Nov 2012
In reply to AJM:
This is based purely on what I've driven (I've done a lot of miles over the years in work vans), not for their convertability, but I'd go for a Sprinter. I find they are reliable and the nicest to drive. Transits are perfectly OK, but I find the drive less appealing than the Merc. The Vauxhall is completely fine, but not inspiring in any way, whilst I won't touch a Renault as I've had too many mechanical issues over the years.
I'm sure others will totally disagree, but there you go!
I can also recommend my own vehicle - a T4 syncro ;-)
ERU - on 08 Nov 2012
I just went from a VW T4 to VW Caddy
AJM - on 09 Nov 2012
In reply to AJM:

Cheers guys
Alex Slipchuk on 09 Nov 2012
In reply to AJM: my mate is the head of servicing for a major car dealership. He gave me one piece of advice and of course a crackin deal. "most peoples perception of brand reliability is about 5 years behind the actual, as manufacturers invest more in the development of customers negative views". So if old wheels go with the flow. If new stay away from German and go French. He makes more money on VW than renault. It kinda makes sense ;)
Cuthbert on 09 Nov 2012
In reply to AJM:

Ive done 2 conversions on Vivaro and Trafic high tops, they are both the same vehicle. I have many pictures if you are interested.
Alex Slipchuk on 09 Nov 2012
In reply to The Big Man: Ps newer years of older models tend to have more of the discovered faults ironed out. Or at least more chance of getting a free repair as easier to search the net, find other owners with similar problems and demand free repair for a recognised fault. Good luck
Alasdair Fulton - on 09 Nov 2012
In reply to AJM: Do the Sprinters not have the same problem as the Vitos- i.e. engine and parts last well but your shell will be rusted to death in a matter of years??

What about a V.W. crafter - not looked at prices etc.

There was a really nice Transit High top for sale on here a month back or so.

Just buy this...

cyberpunk - on 09 Nov 2012
In reply to AJM: I did a medium wheel base sprinter and its the business. Go and buy an old caravan and take all the parts from it. Eg the sink, and foam for the beds, which are both very expensive. I can email you picks of mine if you want. Windows you can get from scrapped mini busses or vans.
bobpilgrem - on 09 Nov 2012
In reply to AJM: Cyberpunk makes a good point re fittings.
The van I have was fitted with quality items from a nearly new caravan that had been written off.The quality of the seats/upholstery is excellent and has been pointed out these are very expensive to buy new.
My van is a Y reg sprinter with 100k and has beed very reliable for
the 3 years I have had it.

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