4x4 fully self-contained camper help needed

Submitted: Monday, Jun 14, 2010 at 20:17
ThreadID: 79347 Views:7458 Replies:8 FollowUps:2
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Hi everyone,

I have just spent last 35 out of 48 hours reading and reading about 4x4's, camping, campers, motorhomes, RV's.

I need a break. I have been working almost non-stop without a holidays for years now. I am tired.

I decided to do something with my life, as I am getting older I would like to have the last opportunity and travel australia, if possible for a year or longer. I love photography, I would like to take many pictures, visit many places, meet many people and make new friends.

But! I am not rich, so money is an issue. I have nothing, well, I am willing to spend upwards to 30k AUD on a 4x4 camper/whatever, which will get me anywhere in the Oz and provide with me everything I need, most importantly:

- gets me anywhere (CSR too if possible)
- small enough to fit anywhere
- economical (I know it will "eat" about 15l per 100km, but I do like to look after our environment)
- enough space for comfortable living for 2 people, including:
- camera stuff, laptop, a3 printer, HF radio setup - I am radio amateur, roof rack so I can carry small 10-12m tower with antenna
- plenty of water storrage, fuel storrage, battery - power
- don't care about build-in toilet, showever hower is important

Help me to find / advise me on something suitable. It would become my home and possible another person's home for a longer period of time.

I know I am asking for a lot for a little money and I am not able to affor something like:


Please, help. Any ideas / recommendations for 4wd camper are greatly appreciated.

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Reply By: oz doc - Monday, Jun 14, 2010 at 20:37

Monday, Jun 14, 2010 at 20:37
Hi mwOjrx, I suggest you start at the beginning and don't over think things. There is an absolute world of choice out there when it comes to travelling around Oz. I would start with visiting a caravan and camping show and seeing the options in the flesh. Then walk away and think about the type of travelling you are going to do. Once you have narrowed things down- see if you can do a test run in a hired camper before making your final choice. When you do make your purchase- if it is not totally ideal- it wont be the end of the world. Most of us do some modifications to our campers to suit our specific needs. If you are really unhappy with your choice- you can always on sell the camper and start again. Most campers hold their value reasonably well and there is a strong market for second hand. Let planning your trip and choosing your camper be part of the fun of the overall journey.cheers doc.
AnswerID: 420818

Reply By: Member - John and Val - Monday, Jun 14, 2010 at 22:26

Monday, Jun 14, 2010 at 22:26

Until recently when we added a light off road trailer, we (retired nomads) have lived pretty comfortably in a Troopy for up to 4 months. Our Troopy is now over 20 years old with 400,000 km on the clock, has a big thirst, but will handle the rough stuff with the best of them. It has very little resale value. If you can find one of mature years in good condition and are able/willing to fit it out to suit your needs, it may suit you. Check out our blog here to see how we've set ours up. It's done a lot of big trips into some pretty remote places over the last decade or more and apart from minor evolutionary changes, we wouldn't swap it for anything "better". Check out the other setups to be found in blogs on this site too.

Shower? Warm a few litres of water over the fire and use a $20 12volt shower attached to the roofrack. For privacy arrange a tarp supported by the roofrack.

Most of your electrical gear, laptop etc can be run from 12v, though the A3 printer will pose problems - pretty big for a life on the road too. We carry computing gear, but have never carried a printer - printing the photos can wait until we get home. Last trip (20000 km) we got home with 10000 photos!

The offroad trailer - Our Troopy functions as kitchen and comfortable bedroom, with storage under the double bed. When this becomes too hard, adding a trailer to provide cargo space is a pretty cheap option. Suggest check out the blog and see if something similar would work for you.



J and V
"Not everything that can be counted counts, and not everything that counts can be counted."
- Albert Einstein

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AnswerID: 420835

Reply By: Member - Graham (WA) - Tuesday, Jun 15, 2010 at 01:13

Tuesday, Jun 15, 2010 at 01:13
Hi Oliver,

try some web searches to find a vehicle that suits or goes close to what you seek.

For example

do a key word search as camper or something like that


You can always do some bits and pieces to add or change things. Shower can be as simple as a $20+ 12V unit with some heated up water in a bucket - and if you need privacy just add a foldup or collapsible ensuite / change room that stows away and takes up very little space
You can make what ever you decide upon as user friendly and homey as you need to.
We tented for years before opting for towing an offroad van. It's all a matter of looking and seeing what you would like; and then settling for what you can get that is within your budget.

AnswerID: 420848

Reply By: Member - Bucky - Tuesday, Jun 15, 2010 at 05:58

Tuesday, Jun 15, 2010 at 05:58

If money is no object, then you want one of these !

Image Could Not Be Found

6X6 with in cabin, remote controlled tyre deflators.

First sughted at Coward Springs, and last sighting at Yulara Campground

AnswerID: 420849

Follow Up By: mw0jrx - Tuesday, Jun 15, 2010 at 06:48

Tuesday, Jun 15, 2010 at 06:48
Hi everyone,

Many thanks for your suggestions and advice. You gave me much more now, so decisions decisions decisions.

I have also found this website:


Has anybody seen them or have personal experience with earthcruisers? They look as they would do the job nicely.

I see that my only problems are the financials, got only about 30k AUD to spend, which is not a lot. Looks like I have to find out someone who will share the trip with me, as I am a photographer (well, trying hard, I am not a professional though) I need to join forces and share costs with - writer? cameraman? fellow adventurer?

Anyway, I appreciate your replies. Just keep them coming!

Now is time to prepare for the journey, would like to start it in the beginning of the next year.

FollowupID: 691058

Reply By: Stevesub1 - Tuesday, Jun 15, 2010 at 07:35

Tuesday, Jun 15, 2010 at 07:35
We have a 2000 78 series Troopy pop-top. maybe a bit small for what you want but IF you can find one, it will fit the budget and go anywhere you want. We have the standard 2 x 90L fuel tanks, 45L of water but there is room for another water tanks or bigger fuel tank. 2 x batteries, etc.

Shower, see previous posts.

Also remember the hi-top Troopys, they are cheaper than the pop-tops.

Roof rack, we do not have one but could put one on if we had only light stuff on the rook.

Fuel, we get around 12L/100km

We have decided that we will be getting a OZ Tent to go with the Troopy when we start travelling again in a couple of years time so we have more room but a quick and easy tent to put up. We talked about caravans, camper trailers, etc and have decided on the tent option.

Sorry, we have had out Troopy for 7 years now and it is not for sale, even though we get a couple of offers a year for it - we love it too much.

We have friends in the US who have just put a camper conversion on the back of a small 4WD Isuzu truck. It looked very smart and has more room than our Troopy.

AnswerID: 420855

Reply By: Member - Tour Boy ( Bundy QLD) - Tuesday, Jun 15, 2010 at 07:45

Tuesday, Jun 15, 2010 at 07:45
Hi Oliver,
maybe an ex rental troopie camper you can pick them up for less than 15k for a 5 yo one with about 250,000km on it.

2010 Isuzu FTS800 Expedition camper
2015 Fortuner
Had 72 cruisers in my time

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AnswerID: 420857

Reply By: Signman - Tuesday, Jun 15, 2010 at 12:13

Tuesday, Jun 15, 2010 at 12:13
Hiya Oliver
We have an IVECO 4wd Camper van.
It suits ALL the parameters you mention (including the CSR).
Very capable vehicle- should I say almost as capable as our previous vehicle, 75 series Troopy- but a lot more 'user friendly and comfportable'.
Has excellent 4wd qualities with hi/lo ratios and rear diff locker.
Fuel-about 12-13 l/100km.
AnswerID: 420879

Follow Up By: Member - Tony V (NSW) - Tuesday, Jun 15, 2010 at 17:06

Tuesday, Jun 15, 2010 at 17:06

I had a quick look and Oliver may be in luck if an IVECO Camper suits what he is looking for RV sales IVECO Camper Click here for $31k which "ain't bad"

Have a look..

equiped with

"Fully imported go-anywhere H.D. 4X4 campervan conversion, incl. Waeco fridge, gas cooktop,sink w.el. pump, 90l water tank, aircon. etc. Wind-out Fiamma awning, 2 spare wheels, High-lift jack, 2 fueltanks (90 and 85l), rear diff lock, UHF radio etc. Incl. is full w/shop manual on CD. Eng. just fully rebuilt, detailed receipts, cost 9400.00"

Too far fo me to have a look....
FollowupID: 691124

Reply By: katepaul - Friday, Jun 18, 2010 at 10:52

Friday, Jun 18, 2010 at 10:52
Hi Oliver check out landcruiser with gullwing door canopy goes anywhere can be designed how u like sleep inside or in rooftop tent look at internet sites dave's metal products, metalform industries, metallink,department of interiers ,bull canopies in WA,and theres a new mob in nsw making aluminium box shape canopies with similiar setup do a search of metal fabrication shops etc this may allso help u decide we have been researching 4 sometime now goodluck kate
AnswerID: 421277

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