Camper Vans

John King

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They're not known as "Hitler's Revenge" for nothing. And the electrics are abominable.

Who needs 237 ft.lbs.torque on the rear axle nut? 120 ft.lbs. is more than sufficient, and I never had one come loose ...
 

Panolyman

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I didn't know this thread existed, but fortuitously, I came across this beauty in Bristol last week.

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rloewy

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ralf-11

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campers Vanagon & Ford.jpg
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WRay

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Whenever I happen to see an old Veedub bus I only seem to have my phone with me. So, here are a couple I've seen locally.

Gold Bus.jpg
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Vdub Bus-1a.jpg
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Vdub Bus-1.jpg
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In the past I have owned a model similar to each of these!
 

ralf-11

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VW Bus stoners smoke.jpg
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mcrosa

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I had a 1970 VW Camper van in the 90's. I refurbished the interior. We live in Miami, FL and our plan was to take a 3 or more week vacation and take the Blue Ridge parkway and on into Virginia and then New York crossing into Canada at Niagra Falls and then to Detroit MI to visit the wifes family. Well we were on our way and about 4 hours in we stop at a rest area for a restroom break for us and the kids. Coming back to the van we all piled in and I turned the key and nothing. All the lights worked but no starter. Fortunately the rest area was on a slope and with the wife driving I was able to get the van moving and then with some quick manuvering I jumped in and popped the clutch and the van started and we were on our way. Needless to say we were not planning on stopping the van until we reached a Campground. About 4 hours later we are in GA and stop at KOA. This was on hilly ground so I picked a stop that I would be able to coast down and pop the clutch if needed. The next morning, we load up and I turn the key and it starts right up. I'm thinking we must have some gremlins. Anyway we reach Cherokee, NC and spend the night in a hotel. AHH Hot showers and a swimming pool. Nest morning afraid to continue we decide to head straight to Detroit and we did it not stop. Long story short we came back to Miami and I was talking with a client of mine who had an auto parts store and he tells me that the vans are notorius for having this problem Seems the wire run from the front to the starter in the back heats up and in effect creates so much resisitance that the current can't flow. He told me to wire a (if memory serves) switch at the back to the ignition. This then would close and send juice directly to the starter. I did the repair and never had that problem again. Unhappily I was never able to repeat the trip.
 

ralf-11

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you can buy a Vanagon Westy or Weekender (no stove etc. just the poptop). At The Samba there is an entire sub-forum dedicated to the numerous repairs and fixes needed to keep them mobile.

There is also a 4wd version (which entails even more fixes).

But when stopped they are pretty nice. When moving they are the only small camper of that size (tho you can refit a Ford Transit)
Vanagon beneath big rock at Moab.jpg
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barry13

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When moving they are the only small camper of that size (tho you can refit a Ford Transit)
There's a few companies converting the MBZ Metris; at least one is in USA.
The Metris and at least the Transit Connects would fit in most garages.
The Nissan NV are also compact, but won't be sold here after this year.

And many converting Dodge Ram Promaster (aka Fiat Ducato et al) and Sprinters. And VW Crafters overseas.
They are much larger than an early VW, but the 19' versions fit in a standard parking space and a tall garage. See the Winnebago Revel or the two Storyteller Mode Sprinters I posted in post #18 for 4x4 examples.
 

dougpayne

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I've had three VW buses over the years. When I was up to speed I could yank the engine out in about 40 minutes. I now have a GMC Safari van I converted to a camper. More power and more amenities (like A/C and auto transmission).

I made a video showing the conversion:
 

rloewy

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ralf-11

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Vanagon model - moldy and old.jpg
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rloewy

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ralf-11

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We talked to my neighbor and my wife did so research after we snapped these pics. It was a complete frame off restoration done by a gentlemen in the neighboring town. This particularly model was not sold in the USA but in Switzerland, as a tourist bus, note the unique skylights, that Scott0487 pointed out, and the unique open roof for mountain viewing.

That model is called a "Samba" - AFAIK they do not have a frame. They have become quite valuable - into the 6 figures USD.
 

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