Which Campervan is best?

Submitted: Wednesday, Mar 08, 2006 at 11:46
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Hi now that you wonderful knowledgable beings assisted in the decision making process of my new truck purchase...any ideas on which campervan to get?

I dont want the tent on wheels style, as Im a woman usually travelling alone with my 3 young children who dont really like assisting me to set up camp for too long, unless I stand there screaming at them with the hammer in one hand...then they oblige quite readily..so I would rather avoide the screaming scenarios at most costs and consider more seriously about purchasing one of those jayco campervans, or pop top...Yes we will be taking it off road, but it wouldnt be going too much further off road than to Fraser or Similiar beach camp. I will be using it on the highway a bit as I do a Melbourne trip at least once every 10 mths.

I am leaning more to the campervan at this stage due to their taking up less space to store at home, and I assume they dont chew up as much petrol when you tow them, cos they fold down lower, and they appear to be lighter, they also over more bedspace? But how much difficulty is involved with setting them up? Be very interested to hear from other woman on the manageability of setting up campervans? Thanks, I so look forward to all your advice...

ps. van will be pulled by a v8 cruiser & I my eldest is a 13 year old boy, taller than me and capable of at least holding something should he need to.
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Reply By: Bronco2 - Wednesday, Mar 08, 2006 at 12:29

Wednesday, Mar 08, 2006 at 12:29
Hi there!
Well, i gotta tell you from the outset..I do not favour pop-tops! Particularly if you intend going off the bitumen with it. Lots of friends of mine who have owned one seem to complain that things tend to go wrong with the mechanism ( probably get some stick from current owners!) Other thing is (so I'm told)..they tend to leak a little in the wet weather. However, having said that, they are okay to tow (low profile) and appear to be fairly well set up inside (compact). My choice, if I were in your situation, would be to go look at the Avan series..very well constructed, and proven to be robust. However, your talking to a camper/trailer man..a little bias! happy hunting!
Bronco
AnswerID: 159302

Follow Up By: GEG - Wednesday, Mar 08, 2006 at 13:45

Wednesday, Mar 08, 2006 at 13:45
I cant anything on the avan series...? Are they very expensive?
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Reply By: maroni - Wednesday, Mar 08, 2006 at 13:29

Wednesday, Mar 08, 2006 at 13:29
we have a cavalier camper which takes about 3mins to set up bit longer if puttingup annexe, but saw a great camper on here the other day. called adventure campers very impressive, will be looking at one.try their website adventure campers .com.au
AnswerID: 159313

Follow Up By: GEG - Wednesday, Mar 08, 2006 at 13:57

Wednesday, Mar 08, 2006 at 13:57
Thanks maroni, I dont think the trailer would be good for me - i could be wrong - but i need to sleep 3 kids and myself, with the jayco type campervan i have a bed up one end, the boys sharing the bed up the other, and my daughter can either sleep on the couch, or we could put the table down, or more than likely she would sleep in my bed. I love the tent thing but look forward to not having to open up the camper stretchers, and setting them up, after I have just erected a big tent. Im over tent pegs and hammers, I would much rather sit outside under the vans awning sipping sauvignon blanc watching the surf roll in.
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Reply By: flappa - Wednesday, Mar 08, 2006 at 14:02

Wednesday, Mar 08, 2006 at 14:02
Just a clarification to make sure we are talking about the same things.

Campervan, I'm assuming you are talking about the Jayco Style , end push out , type things . . . Now called Campertrailers , just like their Box Trailer type Campertrailer Brothers and Sisters.

Campervans are really now the Converted Hiace/Sprinter/Troopy . . . Hire Vehicle . . . type things.

So , assuming you ARE talking about the Jayco style trailers . . .

They are pretty easy to setup. The roof is winched into position , not lifted , and the Beds are on runners. I cant think of too much where heavy lifting is involved. I would think they should be managable by a lady easy enough.

I would think 30mins tops , to have it setup to sleep overnight.

Its basically, wind down the support legs , pop the roof , push out the ends , put in supports . . . Job done.
AnswerID: 159315

Follow Up By: GEG - Wednesday, Mar 08, 2006 at 14:18

Wednesday, Mar 08, 2006 at 14:18
yep thems the ones flappa...Did I not mention Jayco? Well thanks for the run down on how to set them up. Sounds real easy. More time to enjoy the holiday destination, or the bottle of wine Ive just opened.
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Follow Up By: flappa - Wednesday, Mar 08, 2006 at 14:39

Wednesday, Mar 08, 2006 at 14:39
Yeah you mentioned Jayco in one sentence , and then Campervan in another . . . Just making sure we were talking about the same thing.

I actually regret not buying a Jayco and buying a regular camper trailer.

The Jayco would have suited our requirements better , but , live and learn.

One downside you might want to think about is , they aren't designed for a quick roadside "cuppa". The kitchen is not easily accessed without the roof being up. You need to have seperate Cuppa/Lunch facilities available to you.
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Follow Up By: GEG - Wednesday, Mar 08, 2006 at 21:43

Wednesday, Mar 08, 2006 at 21:43
I saw a goldstream version and it had an outside slot on the side of the van...which took a small stove and another slot when folded down turned into a little table...very handy i thought...
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Reply By: Jarse - Wednesday, Mar 08, 2006 at 14:47

Wednesday, Mar 08, 2006 at 14:47
I've got a Coromal Silhouette PS391. I'm quite happy with it. It appears to be well made, and is easy to set up. It tows really well, i.e. doesn't affect handling much, and I've had very few problems with it so far.

Beds are standard, i.e queen at the front and double at the back. Plus the dinette folds down so you could sleep a child there.

You could set up the camper by yourself, but the assistance of one or more of the kids inside makes it far easier - like pushing the beds and kitchen out. You can give them each a simple task and that'll make it fun for them.

There's heaps of info on this site about the different brands and relative strengths and weaknesses of each. Whichever brand you get - just get it! You'll never look back.
AnswerID: 159319

Follow Up By: GEG - Wednesday, Mar 08, 2006 at 15:03

Wednesday, Mar 08, 2006 at 15:03
I like the coromal, but fear they may be past my budget. How much did you pay for yours..did you get new or used.??
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Reply By: MickO13 - Wednesday, Mar 08, 2006 at 17:44

Wednesday, Mar 08, 2006 at 17:44
I did a heap of research on campervans last year and narrowed it down to the Goldstream. Must admit that they cost more than equivilant Jayco's but the build quality and fittings were far superior. Anyway, after the rounds of all the caravan and camping show's and expo's, I bought a campertrailer. Go figure!! Still it cost less than half the price of a campervan and will go a lot more places....and survive.
''We knew from the experience of well-known travelers that the
trip would doubtless be attended with much hardship.''
Richard Maurice - 1903

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AnswerID: 159346

Reply By: Keith_A (Qld) - Wednesday, Mar 08, 2006 at 18:47

Wednesday, Mar 08, 2006 at 18:47
Hi GEG. We have owned this style of camper for about 20 years.
They are great. Previous posts have asked simliar questions on this forum.
On the top of the forum page, to the left of the search field you will see a space called ' Post Find'. If you know the post number, you can type it in.
So - have a look at these posts - No 30549; 21724; 18127;25897 and 5761.
You can also search for say - Swan; Dove; Coromal or Goldstream.
They may help with additional info on these style of campers.
We currently own a Coromal Magnum offroad. Paid $17,000 2nd hand.
Good luck with your research......................Keith.

AnswerID: 159358

Follow Up By: GEG - Wednesday, Mar 08, 2006 at 21:46

Wednesday, Mar 08, 2006 at 21:46
fantastic, thats about what I want to pay for a second hand one too.

do you have any problems towing it?
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Reply By: Member - Lance S (VIC) - Wednesday, Mar 08, 2006 at 18:58

Wednesday, Mar 08, 2006 at 18:58
Hi geg, i have a jayco eagle and also have 3 kids and have been to Alice, Flinders, Oodnadatta and Arkaroola to name a few and never had a problem , i think it has all the comforts of home for a campervan and would recommend it to anyone thinking of parting with there hard earned cash.
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Follow Up By: GEG - Wednesday, Mar 08, 2006 at 21:06

Wednesday, Mar 08, 2006 at 21:06
Hi lance,

Thanks for your comments. Yes I was thinking of the Eagle too.

Did you get the off road version? New or second hand and how much did you pay?

Sorry for all the questions - how old are your kids? Can you take the table completly out of the van to give a bit more space?

how long does it take to put up, and pull down..

cheers
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Follow Up By: Member - Lance S (VIC) - Monday, Mar 13, 2006 at 15:21

Monday, Mar 13, 2006 at 15:21
Hi GEG, i got the on-road eagle (2001model) and paid $16500 brand new from page brothers in seaford, the kids are 8,10&12 with the 10 year old boy sleeps on the table, i think the bracket for the table are rivetted on to the side, and takes about 10 minutes plus about 20 or so minutes for the annexe to set up.

cheers
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Follow Up By: GEG - Saturday, Mar 18, 2006 at 09:13

Saturday, Mar 18, 2006 at 09:13
Lance, I still havent purchased my van yet. My new cruiser should be delivered by next weekend then ill start seriously searching once I have the new car...still trying to get the dealer to match the black tint to black side steps....dont ask

YOu said yours is an onroad version eagle, and I am wondering what type of off roads you have pulled it along, and were there any problems?

2nd question, have you ever taken it down the beach to camp on and any problems pulling an onroad one down there.

Im going to try and get an offroad, but being 2nd hand and not always having as much choice I am just interested in the capabilities of the onroad versions.
tar..
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Reply By: Jimbo - Wednesday, Mar 08, 2006 at 20:48

Wednesday, Mar 08, 2006 at 20:48
GEG,

There is no, one, perfect camper. It has to suit your needs.

We've progressed from "tent on wheels" (albeit with a QS Bed, side kitchen, water tank, full awning etc) to a Jayco Eagle Outback.

The Jayco is very comfortable, reasonably quick to set up, would tow behind your LC with ease. Still, keep in mind you have to sleep three kids. If one is happy to kip with you and two are happy to share the other end it is a breeze. If perhaps the 13 year old lad wants to sleep solo, you will have to drop the table each night.

Storage room is not huge (but a lot better than a "tent on wheels") so you have to work out what goes where. The back of the Cruiser would hold plenty.

All I would suggest is walk every Caravan dealer available to you and examine the offerings in detail. Make no mistake, they look great in a Caravan Yard, empty, but it is a diiferent scenario once you load them with all of your gear.

Cheers,

Jim.
AnswerID: 159386

Reply By: Derek from Affordable Batteries & Radiators - Wednesday, Mar 08, 2006 at 21:05

Wednesday, Mar 08, 2006 at 21:05
Very happy with my Supreme Getaway but they did have to repair the shower drain and supply paint for me to paint the base. Kratzmann tried twice to repair but could not fix it so in the end they supplied the paint and I did it myself.

It goes anywhere and I can set up on my own when I'm out taking photographs.

In the link you will also see my old wind up Goldstream which was also very good but very hot in summer.

My Rig

Regards Derek.
AnswerID: 159393

Follow Up By: GEG - Wednesday, Mar 08, 2006 at 21:41

Wednesday, Mar 08, 2006 at 21:41
Hi Derek

Thankyou for sending your pictures. They are awesome. Your van looks very comfortable, and really nice. I dont think I was wanting to get something that good...Maybe one day but for now I need something to replace the tent for holidays in and for weekends away. If the kids behave I may let them take the small TV away too:)

How much did your van cost?

The goldstream are supposed to be real nice and I have slipped into their web pages. Ive heard they have a few troubles here and there, they are made down in vic near where my sister lives...They are possibly made for the colder weather perhaps.

Handy for when I tour Tassie!

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Follow Up By: Derek from Affordable Batteries & Radiators - Wednesday, Mar 08, 2006 at 22:08

Wednesday, Mar 08, 2006 at 22:08
My van was around $50k it does have everything though. Toilet / shower, A/C, 240v / 12v power, fully insulated, Honda Generator, annex , 200L water tanks and full offroad independent suspension.

Try Jayco for a very cost effective first van. $25k will get you quite a good basic package.

Regards Derek.
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Follow Up By: GEG - Thursday, Mar 09, 2006 at 07:29

Thursday, Mar 09, 2006 at 07:29
Hi Derek,

Pheww, you would want to be doing a lot of 'getting away from it all' to justify such an expense. No wonder it looks so good. My work wont let me take off when I want to...so Im stuck with 4 weeks a year, weekends and the public holidays. I have a unit down the coast and head there also, so buying a big expensive van will have to wait until I go on long service leave...or get a reduncancy?

I looked on ebay, and jayco not too old campers, are selling from around 11k to 19k and that sounds perfect. Just need one to be selling around Brisbane area, so I could look at it before sending someone I dont know a check...

Thanks again...
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Reply By: glenn_c - Thursday, Mar 09, 2006 at 08:33

Thursday, Mar 09, 2006 at 08:33
Try looking in the Trading Post there are some good Goldstream's for sale around Brisbane. I just bought a 1995 goldstream up graded from a 1988 jayco. Goldstream is a lot better made and second hand seem to be cheaper. I paid $11000 for the goldstream fully setup for off road battery, solar etc.
Regards
Glenn
AnswerID: 159444

Follow Up By: GEG - Thursday, Mar 09, 2006 at 22:55

Thursday, Mar 09, 2006 at 22:55
Hi Glenn,

thanks so much for that...Is the Trading post out today..you have picked up a great bargain.

ill check the newspaper out...asap.

bye
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Follow Up By: flappa - Monday, Mar 13, 2006 at 15:23

Monday, Mar 13, 2006 at 15:23
Trady is out Thursdays but you can see it online at

www.tradingpost.com.au
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