View Full Version : The campervan of doom.

08-15-2011, 04:34 PM
My parents have put Jos on the insurance for their campervan.

This campervan has a number of quirks.
It was not manufactured or widely sold in the UK. Most of the instructions are in japanese.
It was not originally a camper, it has recieved an aftermarket conversion.
If you drive it for more than an hour you have to have the heating on, or it overheats.
You can't take it over 40mph, or it overheats.
If it overheats, there's a chance the engine will explode.
The engine is seated directly under the front passenger seat.

Nethertheless, it is quite a charming campervan. The radio works, which is a step up for vehicles owned by my parents. It is surprisingly maneuvarable for such a big lump of a van, and it got us around quite nicely on saturday (we explored Norfolk in it) although by sunday all the driving meant it was overheating more quickly.

I quite like the van. Even if it is likely to explode. Compared to the triumph (which did nearly explode on the way back from the forest of dean) or the saab (which was more rust than car) or the other saab, which was in such bad condition the bomb squad nearly blew it up while the queen was visiting our area, this is positively luxurious.

08-15-2011, 04:43 PM
Has the radiator been flushed recently, and new anti-freeze (coolant) used?

Sounds like a wonderful camper . . . if you want to perish in a horrible explosion.

08-15-2011, 06:30 PM
Yep! They've been doing everything to make it overheat less. To be fair to it, where it;s going to travel it;s rarely going to need to go above 40mph. I wouldn't want to drive it faster than that anyway, cause it;s so big. Most roads here have a max limit of 60mph.

And while I'm not married to the idea of persihing in a fiery explosion, I do like being able to have an excuse to only use the back roads. We discovered so many wonderful things and places on saturday we'd have missed if we'd used the motorway.

08-15-2011, 06:42 PM
If you want I will send you through a PM my full name, address, etc., and you could put me in your will?.......

Okay, it was just a thought. ;)

08-15-2011, 06:48 PM
And while I'm not married to the idea of persihing in a fiery explosion, I do like being able to have an excuse to only use the back roads. We discovered so many wonderful things and places on saturday we'd have missed if we'd used the motorway.

There is a book titled Blue Highways with that same general take on travel. The name blue highway comes from the fact that old blacktop (asphalt) highways can look blueish in certain light.

Then there's Steinbeck's Travels with Charley (Charley being his French poodle).

08-15-2011, 06:59 PM
my family history is riddled with POS vehicles. my parents once had a sixty four chrysler imperial. they bought it second hand not third hand so it was quite a step up for us. light blue leather seats and a nice, quiet ride. never mind that the cigarette lighter came catapulting into the back seat three out of ten times that you pushed the button. so you really couldn't prepare for it. i never will get over the thrill of watching that red hot lighter tumbling end over end in the chill, morning light, wondering which of us kids was going to get the third degree burns this time.
good times; great memories.

always anticipating a fiery death while enjoying an out of the way country drive must be putting quite an edge on your survival mindset. thank your parents --s6

08-15-2011, 07:07 PM
Well, there's an easy escape. Because you have to contantly have the heating on to prevent stalling or, in a really poor piece of luck, fire, the windows are always open too, and they're big enough to climb out. So if my arse starts getting really hot, I'm out the window.

Jos can burn. I've got half a mill of life insurance out on him.

edit: the first car I remember us having was the Triumph, mentioned above. The engine caught fire while we were driving home from the Forest of Dean, which probably explains how matter of fact I am about this. Also the fact that when overheating the van will stall before it explodes. It only has a 0.001% chance of explosion, and we learned how to stop overheating.

The best car we ever had was the 3rd Saab. It stalled on cold wet days. so, for 3 months of the year it only sort of worked. I miss that Saab.

08-15-2011, 07:24 PM
my husband had a chevy pick up truck that was a death trap. one door had to be tied shut with a jump rope because even the slightest turn could cause it to fly open. the heater always ran but that was somewhat cancelled out by the fact that the window never rolled up.

i believe that my three grown daughters are tough minded survivors because of a childhood spent in treacherous vehicles. they tell it differently--s6

08-16-2011, 03:27 AM
For the longest time
all I wanted was a car that was one color.

(the original color - from the factory - no body work!)

Cliff Face
08-16-2011, 03:53 AM
Mum once bought a murder victim's old car when his estate was being sold off.

Us kids really weren't too thrilled about driving around in the murder car. And we used to have to climb in through the boot to get into the backseat. Fortunately it was one of those big boots, with a gap at the top you can climb over into backseat territory.

But still...

Silver King
08-16-2011, 05:52 AM
The overheating issue should be diagnosed and repaired without too much trouble or expense. What you risk in the meantime, whenever the engine overheats, is the almost unbearable toll it takes on the motor and its parts, which were never intended to perform properly when overheated.

I tried to explain this recently to my oldest son, who scoffed at my advice while he continued to drive his overheated vehicle.

I said, "You'll blow that engine if you don't get it fixed."

Guess what happened less than a week later?

08-16-2011, 01:10 PM
They reckon it'll be (mostly) fixed by september.

The only problem is that most garages struggle. Not only have they never seen this model before, the only instructional guides that exist are in Japanese.

We still don't know what all the buttons do.

Cliff Face
08-16-2011, 01:35 PM
Don't press the button that looks like a bee. Thousands of clowns will start pouring out of the vehicle into the street.

Just so you know.