First Caravan - advise??

Hi everyone,

In the market for our first caravan and would love if anyone could take the time to point out the things to watch out for, what is a good brand etc.

Our budget is around $15,000 and there is just me and my wife (first bub due in a few months!).

After looking around for a while, have my eye on the Coromal Seka range around the mid 1990's era. If you could shed some light on this particular type??

Any guidance or feedback would be greatly appreciated as I have never bought a van before.

Thanks everyone...
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Reply By: Notso - Tuesday, Jan 04, 2011 at 23:36

Tuesday, Jan 04, 2011 at 23:36
Coromals have a good reputation, a mate has one and it would be about 1999 build.

Never had any quality issues. A lot depends on how the van has been treated in it's previous life.
AnswerID: 440737

Reply By: Member - Tony S (WA) - Tuesday, Jan 04, 2011 at 23:52

Tuesday, Jan 04, 2011 at 23:52
You could look at Windsor Sunchaser around the '92 to '98. We have a '96 Windsor Sun Chaser "Off Road" pop top. Bought it s/hand from a deceased estate. It has a front kitchen that has plenty of work space for the Dept. of War and Chief Cook. She loves it. Plenty of room for 2 plus little ones.

Once again no matter what breed, check carefully where they came from.

The rig

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AnswerID: 440739

Reply By: - mazcan - Wednesday, Jan 05, 2011 at 00:13

Wednesday, Jan 05, 2011 at 00:13
hi grotman
to obtain the best advice on this site you need to elaborate a bit more as to what your tow vehicle will be or is etc etc????? car or 4wd/soft roader after you advise of this people will be able to give facts if you want it on weights and towing capacities etc and a clue to fuel consumptions etc
whether you intend to go off rd or stay on the sealed rds
how long will the trip be permanent or just short trips etc ???????
do you intend to free camp or stay in parks
there is a smorgasboard of helpfull stuff availuble so give some leads for the imfo required not having a go at you just trying to help
others will advise you same if i hadn't

here are some threads that will throw some light on a few relevant topics for you----- buying older vans-- thread 76311-----
-----this is a recommened ---- van---- windsor rapid 471-- not sure of the models age
and----- legal towing speeds etc in each state---- thread 78694
this is a start and good luck in the future with your travels and new family addition you will find there are others travelling with small children as well
cheers and nappy new year
AnswerID: 440744

Follow Up By: - mazcan - Wednesday, Jan 05, 2011 at 00:26

Wednesday, Jan 05, 2011 at 00:26
hi grotman
thread 83352 may also be of interest to you in considering vans
FollowupID: 712625

Reply By: Witi Repartee - Wednesday, Jan 05, 2011 at 00:14

Wednesday, Jan 05, 2011 at 00:14
Hi..just checking have you read the "Buying a Caravan" article on this site. Lots of info but not Make specific. I'd like to know your proposed tow vehicle as I think it's best to consider the whole package rather than just a part of it, as no doubt safety will be a big consideration once the "bump"arrives.
AnswerID: 440745

Reply By: Axle - Thursday, Jan 06, 2011 at 11:29

Thursday, Jan 06, 2011 at 11:29
G/Day Grotman, Take your time mate because your in the hardest market to get something of value!, Mid ninetes,..15yr old van for $15,000, not good buying as Far as i'm concerned There was a lot of rubbish shoved out there by all manufactures, as sales started to get strong and continue, to do so, they got away with murder as there is no real control over caravan construction, even to-day. I've had a few Poptops, No more!!, Just think of a cardboard box,

with the flaps up, gives you a sense of construction

I would personally chase something up from the eighties, Full van save half that amount of money maybe more, Just make sure you get someone to check it for water ingress, its the only big worry you have to contend with everything else is usually easy matainance,fix.

Cheers Axle.
AnswerID: 440853

Reply By: Member - Noldi (WA) - Thursday, Jan 06, 2011 at 11:41

Thursday, Jan 06, 2011 at 11:41
Hi Grotman,

Seems like a popular move with all my friends lately, moving away from the camper trailers to Vans, One thing (maybe the only thing) they agree on is to get a tandem axle job, greater load carry and safety (i.e. if one tyre goes you still have stability)

AnswerID: 440854

Reply By: Member - Bruce C (NSW) - Thursday, Jan 06, 2011 at 11:43

Thursday, Jan 06, 2011 at 11:43
Hi Grotman,

Given your budget there are quite a few units out there allbiet slightly older models

I have had a caravan for the last 40 years. The first one we had for about 30 years. It was a West Aussie built unit and was called an Aristocrat with 15 foot internals. So some older vans can go the distance and are worth considering.

New unit is a 10 year old Gazal Champion around 19 foot which we bought 4 years ago from Watsons in Coffs Harbour at a good price. So check out the dealers as well.

Look on the internet to compare prices and to get a feel of values

Main thing to look out for is rust in the chassis and the general state of things on the underside. Next thing is whether the roof leaks.

If the inside is neat and tidy that is a good sign that it has been cared for.

Check out the dealers yards as they mainly like to stock the newer vans and are keen to offload the older units and a bargain can be had now and again from that source.

Ally frame or timber ?. there are many schools of thought here and i have had both but cannot decide which is best but lean toward ally for no specific reason. Insulated is best as it keeps out the heat in summer or keeps it in in winter.
In summary, if it looks good underneath and it looks good and clean inside with no staining from roof leaks then you could be onto something.

Later model Corrimals have a very good name but I cannot speak re the earlier models.
When ever you see some one in a van you like just go up to them and ask as many questions as you can think of and most people are only too glad to tell you about their experiences with whatever vans they have or have had.

Iif you have to stretch your budget a little you will not regret it as you will have a tonne of fun in whatever you buy I am sure.

One more thing, electric brakes are the best so if your choice has electric brakes you are well in front.

Cheers, Bruce.

At home and at ease on a track that I know not and
restless and lost on a track that I know. HL.

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AnswerID: 440855

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