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bigmackloud
bigmackloud New Reader
9/15/14 9:44 p.m.

So I keep toying with the idea of how cool it would be to have a motor home for taking to track days. Naturally I'm poor though so I'm not talking about one of those fancy rigs. I'd be looking at a late 70's or 80's model for say under $3000.

Anybody venture down this path before? In my mind it seems like a sweet idea but I'm trying to decide if it might actually be a terrible can of worms that will be a money pit and ill never be able to sell later on.

In practical terms I'd want it to be able to tow my open trailer with the miata on it. VIR is my home track, which is a 2hr drive. I'd want to be able to sleep in it, shower in it, and have ac to cool off in the summer.

Thoughts? For my wifes sake, somebody talk me out of this.

NGTD
NGTD SuperDork
9/15/14 9:57 p.m.

MONEY PIT!!!

They leak, the plumbing breaks, Gas $$$$'s

Edit: You will need the GRM Road Assist list - At least ECM made it a sticky!!

plance1
plance1 Dork
9/15/14 9:58 p.m.

You mean, something like this???

http://www.ctvnews.ca/entertainment/replica-of-breaking-bad-s-rv-meth-lab-hits-the-streets-of-toronto-1.1559883

aussiesmg
aussiesmg MegaDork
9/15/14 10:01 p.m.

Maybe, meet Mongo

 photo 24948EC5-9AD1-4E8D-963F-EB98B1E425A3_zpsr0y4ywob.jpg

Old non buses have huge issues with leaks, etc, buses are stainless steel and leaks are rare.

Parts are trucklike, but if you DIY its not so bad. 8 mpg is considered good.

Having a shower and a E36 M3ter at the track, priceless

bigmackloud
bigmackloud New Reader
9/15/14 10:03 p.m.
plance1 wrote: You mean, something like this??? http://www.ctvnews.ca/entertainment/replica-of-breaking-bad-s-rv-meth-lab-hits-the-streets-of-toronto-1.1559883

Haha, yes actually. I've seen that model several times on CL.

bearmtnmartin
bearmtnmartin GRM+ Memberand Dork
9/15/14 10:04 p.m.

Maybe a better idea to invest the money in an enclosed trailer and put a bunk and a bathroom in the front.

http://cgi.ebay.ca/ebaymotors/8-5-039-x-20-039-Enclosed-Trailer-Great-Cargo-Trailer-or-Car-Trailer-/231331289870?pt=Motors_Trailers&hash=item35dc6b5b0e&forcev4exp=true

pimpm3
pimpm3 HalfDork
9/15/14 10:26 p.m.

In that price range have you considered a box truck. I always wanted to make one with a partition two feet from the slide up rear door for tool storage etc. Get a rv door put it in the side, buy an awning that rolls up and attach it to side by door. Hang a generator under the box. Way less complicated then a 30 year old rv, and easier to maintain.

Mitchell
Mitchell UltraDork
9/15/14 11:09 p.m.

How about a conversion van?

jr02518
jr02518 Reader
9/15/14 11:49 p.m.

I am owned by a 1987 Pace Arrow, 454 Chevy, Turbo 400 and a very thirsty 4 barrel.

Remember, when gas is going thru the carb at a rate less than 7 miles to a gallon it should be considered a cooling agent.

Right?

But having a shower after loading up at the end of the weekend messing with cars before the drive home, priceless.

bigmackloud
bigmackloud New Reader
9/16/14 8:44 a.m.

The idea of converting a box truck isn't bad, but I don't really need yet another project (I tend to go overboard). Then again, I'm still pretending that a 30yr old RV won't be a major project, haha.

I also like the idea of an old Tour Bus. Seems very retro stylish. Really it's not much different than an RV, but somehow I think my wife will really think I've gone off the deep end if I buy a tour bus. (But that won't stop me from spending the next 30 mins looking for buses on CL haha).

Fuel economy isn't that big of a concern. VIR is roughly 170 miles round trip. 7mpg in an RV vs 13 mpg in my F150 equates to an extra $40 to drive the RV.

jr02518 - aside from the fuel economy, how reliable is the rest of the rig?

bigmackloud
bigmackloud New Reader
9/16/14 8:47 a.m.

ohh, and on the line of box trucks... I keep trying to figure out how to make an M934A2 practical. (That's the expansible van version of the military 5 ton 6x6 trucks. 8.3L cummins, central tire inflation system, allison automatic, power steering, ABS).

*I'm standing in front of a M923A2 in my avatar pic. Which is the same thing, just with a cargo bed instead of the van body.

Joe Gearin
Joe Gearin Associate Publisher
9/16/14 9:12 a.m.

I'll just leave this here.....

http://daytona.craigslist.org/cto/4652687119.html

wae
wae HalfDork
9/16/14 9:13 a.m.
Mitchell wrote: How about a conversion van?

I do a conversion van and the only thing I lack is my own bathroom, really. If it's an overnight trip, I take out the middle seats and lay down the bed in the back so I have plenty of room inside to dress/chill out/sleep/whatever and I use a solar shower to get a nice hot shower after I load the car. With the 5.4, my E-150 gets about 12 or or to the gallon when towing an open trailer.

I keep thinking that having an RV would be awesome, even for just a regular regional Rallycross, but I'd have to trade in the van for something else to daily drive and then add an RV to the fleet and space to keep it at the storage lot. On top of all that, it's another engine, transmission, and rear-end to maintain and fix and since it's spending most of its existence just sitting around for months at a time, that will probably just compound problems.

But, boy, it would be so nice to have an air-conditioned living space and full shower, bathroom, kitchen, and bed....

Jay_W
Jay_W Dork
9/16/14 9:14 a.m.

If you're gonna do it, getting an old RV, get either a bus like Mongo, or something top of the line like Foretravel or Blue Bird. I would not trade my 280k new in '89 bought for 13k Foretravel for anything on the market built in the last 10 years in under the half-mil mark. It is just built better. It lets us spend time workin on the rallykar and not babysitting the service rig. Nice change of pace, that. And having a home base in the service area us every bit as nice and fun as you think it is!

GameboyRMH
GameboyRMH GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
9/16/14 9:15 a.m.

Seems like major overkill for doing track days just a 2 hour drive away. If you were taking multi-day road trips to other tracks and/or doing 24-hour races then it might be worth it.

For what you're doing I'd just load up the track car's trunk/utility trailer and drive there if I was confident it wouldn't break down.

Giant Purple Snorklewacker
Giant Purple Snorklewacker MegaDork
9/16/14 9:17 a.m.

One of the guys I race with pulls an open trailer behind one of these.

He won a national championship in the 2nd most contested class in BMW Club Racing by driving that silly thing all over the country and winning. It looks comfy in there.

bearmtnmartin
bearmtnmartin GRM+ Memberand Dork
9/16/14 9:33 a.m.
Jay_W wrote: If you're gonna do it, getting an old RV, get either a bus like Mongo, or something top of the line like Foretravel or Blue Bird. I would not trade my 280k new in '89 bought for 13k Foretravel for anything on the market built in the last 10 years in under the half-mil mark. It is just built better. It lets us spend time workin on the rallykar and not babysitting the service rig. Nice change of pace, that. And having a home base in the service area us every bit as nice and fun as you think it is!

I have a Bluebird. You are not going Bluebirding for $3000.00.

bigmackloud
bigmackloud New Reader
9/16/14 10:18 a.m.

Overkill, yea probably. Though 2hrs is outside my realm of driving back and forth for a 2 day event. So inevitably you need a hotel room for a night or two.

Here's the local front runner. https://raleigh.craigslist.org/rvs/4650246511.html

wvumtnbkr
wvumtnbkr GRM+ Memberand Dork
9/16/14 11:05 a.m.

Ambulance? Add potty?

Jay_W
Jay_W Dork
9/16/14 11:07 a.m.

In reply to bearmtnmartin: No, no you're not, nor are you Foretraveling, or Mongoing. Point is these options, though spendier than the sub 3k budget, are way, WAY better than the inevitable moneypit and hairpuller such an item will be, and so much cheaper than fancynew it ain't even worth discussing.

captdownshift
captdownshift GRM+ Memberand HalfDork
9/16/14 11:09 a.m.

I have always been a fan of full bodied 7.3L powerstroke powered ambulances converted to having a bunk and tons of lockable toolbox and parts bin space. outside of the bathroom they offer everything you're looking for, as they do provide potable water. Add on a retractable awning to setup a folding table under to cook using a coleman stove and you're set.

TRoglodyte
TRoglodyte SuperDork
9/16/14 11:25 a.m.

Our very own forum member Jthw8 had a rolling palace he was trying to sell in this price range, if I am not mistaken. May be worth a look.

gearheadmb
gearheadmb New Reader
9/16/14 12:01 p.m.

I don't see any reason not to just get a basic camper with a van cab. Theres a million of them out there for cheap and most are built on a one ton chassis. I've worked on quite a few over the years. Expect it to be neglected, and most will need brakes, tires, tuneup and the like, but I've rarely seen any with more than about 40,000 miles so once you get the overdue maintenance done it should have plenty of life left in it.

KyAllroad
KyAllroad HalfDork
9/16/14 12:14 p.m.

Thanks for sending me down that CraigsList road. I just killed 15 minutes looking at local listings for an RV I don't have any intention of even considering.

That said, I like the idea. Is it a money pit? Could be, but often people dump money in things making them near perfect, but if "ok" and "serviceable" work for you. I'd say go for it. Especially if you use it for other stuff besides race weekends. Beachfront stay with the wife for a few days? Perfect.

I've had a couple of RVs now and I have to say that it's buying new where the money pit end is. They depreciate worse than anything for the first ten years. But buy in at 3 grand use it for 5 years and it's still worth 3 grand if you maintained it at all (heck maybe even a bit more).

KyAllroad
KyAllroad HalfDork
9/16/14 12:16 p.m.

Also, RV graveyards are in Florida and Arizona. Old folks buy them and have visions of touring the country. Quickly tire of that game and when they die the heirs sell off their assets for next to nothing. YMMV

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