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Campers

I have had an irrational urge to get a camper for a long time now. On the way back from NEMBAfest yesterday, I stopped and looked at R.pods, an RP-178 and an RP-180. The 178, at probably $18K delivered, would just about fit what I'm looking for to comfortably accommodate two people who aren't a couple.

I had previously looked at Airstreams, but wasn't thrilled with layout and I'm not interested in dumping $70K. Looked at R.pods simply because we saw them on the road and always thought they looked nice.

If I bought one, it wouldn't be a rational decision, but...
 

Adventurous

Starshine Bro
Mar 19, 2014
4,232
1,831
Crawlorado
The wife and I have been looking at them recently as well; ones in the same size as what you are checking out. I'm still not 100% sold on the idea but if it helps my case for getting away from civilization more it may be a small price to pay.
 

Pesqueeb

bicycle in airplane hangar
Feb 2, 2007
28,140
4,126
Riding the baggage carousel.
Craigslist. buy used. My camper cost 38k new I got it with two years of use for $20k You can probably find one in great condition for about the same markdown %
This. I'm not really too interested in this sort of thing myself, but a coworker has what I would label a "fetish" for trailers/rv's/campers so I get to hear about it a lot. New purchase depreciation on these sorts of things is unbelievable. Look for something 2-4 years old and you'll save a ton of cash on what's already a pretty irrational purchase. Also, be sure to scour the interwebz for known issues, especially if you settle on a pop-up sort of deal. Leaks can be very problematic. Were it me, I'd look for the exact sort of setup @eric strt6 has, unless you absolutely need more room.

Any thought of a used Sprinter with a camper set up? Or do you just want a tow behind?
I saw a sprinter setup as a camper a couple years back while on a motorcycle trip. Super slick looking. For one or two people, would be totally ideal. I could imagine myself getting into one of these when we are child free.
 

jonKranked

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Nov 10, 2005
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Sprinters with the RV conversion go for 100k new so figure on paying alot even for a used one
Teh Ford Transit vans are comparable except for the bling factor, and have a better price tag.

Although the sprinters are now sold in the US in diesel 4x4 as a factory option.

I've seen DIY camper conversions on vans, saves a good chunk of $$$, but be prepared to invest the time.
 

stevew

unique white person
Sep 21, 2001
31,768
2,691
Teh Ford Transit vans are comparable except for the bling factor, and have a better price tag.
i asked two different outfitters when i was in yosemite if they liked their ford vans...they said yes...but they would have preferred the sprinter...
 

jonKranked

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i asked two different outfitters when i was in yosemite if they liked their ford vans...they said yes...but they would have preferred the sprinter...
i've heard there can be some reliability issues with sprinters, but if you're gonna be spending that kind of money may as well get what you want.
 
Want a tow-behind, not a van. The van's all set up with my bikes and gear.

I would not want a Sprinter - all the campers based on them that I have seen are very cramped inside and they seem to rust out about a year and a day after people buy them. I think they're built with tin plated cheese.

Also, I have a female riding friend who I travel with but don't sleep with; that wouldn't work very well in a van...
 

jonKranked

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Nov 10, 2005
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I would not want a Sprinter - all the campers based on them that I have seen are very cramped inside and they seem to rust out about a year and a day after people buy them. I think they're built with tin plated cheese.

interior or exterior? i've heard of issues with improper insulation causing interior rust.
 

kickstand

Turbo Monkey
Sep 18, 2009
3,445
392
Fenton, MI
interior or exterior? i've heard of issues with improper insulation causing interior rust.
granted we salt our roads like we salt our margarita's around here, but sprinters rust out in about 3 weeks in michigan, regardless of interior set up.

To be fair, foreign cars usually make it 6 months before they rust out, and domestics typically make it about 6 months and 1 week.

I have always been intrigued with the idea of a camper, the problem is that I just can't justify the added cost of gas to tow it everywhere. It's cheaper to tent camp or grab a hotel by the time I factor in all costs over the long run. Yes, a camper would be super convenient, but i just can't justify it.
 

Toshi

Harbinger of Doom
Oct 23, 2001
27,249
2,117
I want to give a camper (travel trailer) a try via a local rental service. No way can I justify owning one–there's no conceivable universe where we'd be out in it enough weekends per year to make that worthwhile. For a retiree the math may well be different…
 

junkyard

You might feel a little prick.
Sep 1, 2015
1,167
617
San Diego
I got a camping trailer and love it. My wife (were not really married) wont tent camp. scared of lions, tigers and bears. The little one loves it and camping. I live in socal so we can camp almost year round. We also took a month long camping trip in it and only spent the last night in a hotel. It was awesome, from san diego to seattle then to montana, idaho, wyoming. I cant wait to go again. I love having my own shitter and shower. The heater and fridge are pimp too. I even got the retro looking one so i like the way it looks. The down sides are the price and maintenance, these wouldn't be so bad if they held their value or lasted a life time. I store it under a roof as well to save it from the sun (socal). When i get another one im getting a nice airstream or a scamp. the fiberglass two piece ones hold their value better and dont have wood to rot out.

I used to use a school bus i fixed up. That used some gas, cost about a dollar a mile. I had some fun with that thing. It was a 1966 chevy 40 footer, with a full roof top deck. Has a 454, 4l80e tranny, 6.23 rear gears, 22.5 wheels, could cruise at 80 mph with a tailwind. Had it over a 100 once. Banged a bunch of chicks in it in college. Partied a bunch of places, went on road trips. I took it to burning man one year. Good times. Well brakes, gas, tires and insurance just cost to much on that thing. Now its being used as storage for kids shit. But will probably become a spare bedroom. Trailers are so much better than motorhomes.

I want to build a teardrop with a bike rack for my solo trips with my vintage car.
 

jdcamb

Tool Time!
Feb 17, 2002
16,126
3,350
Nowhere Man!
I pick up fat chicks in the local bar. I stay at their places and sneak out in the morning. I steal their bacon also.... Saves me a tonne of money all kidding aside....
 

Jozz

Joe Dalton
Apr 18, 2002
1,538
645
SADL
I'm partial to Sprinters. Good for camping, good for hauling stuff.

2012, still no rust. Conversion will be around $12k cdn. Could sleep 2 adults + one tiny Brooklyn chick

IMG_1732.JPG
 

Westy

the teste
Nov 22, 2002
36,622
3,441
Sleazattle
I've had several small lightweight pop up campers. Never spent more than a few hundred bucks and they have been light enough for me to tow behind my back. Did have to pony up for one of them shoulder strap type hitches.
 

Jm_

Turbo Monkey
Jan 14, 2002
9,420
1,829
AK
Craigslist. buy used. My camper cost 38k new I got it with two years of use for $20k You can probably find one in great condition for about the same markdown %
Yep. My parents bought some crazy nice trailer a few years back. Then when it came time, they couldn't unload it. It was way nice, still in "like new" condition when they sold it, but you're going to lose a ton of money buying new. There's some good stuff out there and this is a huge capital investment. Edit: Investment isn't the right description, place to throw money into is better.
 

eric strt6

Resident Curmudgeon
Sep 8, 2001
14,750
3,951
directly above the center of the earth
Yep. My parents bought some crazy nice trailer a few years back. Then when it came time, they couldn't unload it. It was way nice, still in "like new" condition when they sold it, but you're going to lose a ton of money buying new. There's some good stuff out there and this is a huge capital investment. Edit: Investment isn't the right description, place to throw money into is better.
I would slightly disagree. We use ours some 70-80 nights a year for my work, Ruths competitions and vacation travel. Hotels would have run 125-150 per night. We have had the camper 6 years. That works out to a lot of cash ( wife isn't going to tent camp or motel 6 it). The camper has easily covered the purchsase price and then some.

 
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Toshi

Harbinger of Doom
Oct 23, 2001
27,249
2,117
Your situation is unique since you're using it all the time. Most people use theirs a few times per year, and at that rate it's a huge waste of money.
 

OGRipper

Turbo Monkey
Feb 3, 2004
9,743
170
NORCAL is the hizzle
I agree with trying to find one used. The trick is to find a good deal on one that is not completely trashed.

I went the van route and bought a used, fully converted Sprinter in January. I was going to get one of the new Ford Transits and build it out but 1, it would have been way more money new and 2, all of the good outfitters I talked to were fully booked. (Like a year and a half to two years out for a full conversion.) I lucked out and found one pretty close to how I would have done it for a great price and with low miles.

My girlfriend and I do a lot of 1 and 2 night riding trips, often with late night arrivals and early departures. It's awesome to have basically zero set-up and break down time. Instead of screwing with your gear after a long drive, just turn the engine off and pour the whiskey...

I have a few friends who have done the van thing on a tight budget. Assuming you've already got camp gear, all you really need is a van with a bed platform to get a lot of the advantages.
 

TreeSaw

Mama Monkey
Oct 30, 2003
16,670
436
Dancin' over rocks n' roots!
RPods were nice, but overpriced IMHO. We ended up with at 18' Jayco Flight SLS (rear bunk beds and front dinette that can seat 6 adults or be a queen-sized bed. It's been AWESOME! Our local RV shop is good too...I can take a look at their inventory if you're interested in checking it out. New was $20k and we got it "used" (plastic still on the stove burner and bunk beds were still wrapped) for $8500. Didn't want slides (more maintenance) and wanted something small and lightweight. Most campgrounds will let our camper camp on a "tent" site because it's so small. Weights less than 3k lbs. loaded and tows like a dream.
 

IH8Rice

I'm Mr. Negative! I Fail!
Aug 2, 2008
24,554
488
Im over here now
my wife and i are also interested in a camper as well. we were looking at buying a tow behind to use while we convert a school bus. we originally liked the idea of a camper in the bed of a 3/4 ton pickup but none of the trucks are really large enough inside for three dogs to sit comfortably.
 

junkyard

You might feel a little prick.
Sep 1, 2015
1,167
617
San Diego
my wife and i are also interested in a camper as well. we were looking at buying a tow behind to use while we convert a school bus. we originally liked the idea of a camper in the bed of a 3/4 ton pickup but none of the trucks are really large enough inside for three dogs to sit comfortably.
You wanna buy my bus?
 

eric strt6

Resident Curmudgeon
Sep 8, 2001
14,750
3,951
directly above the center of the earth
It has, Fridge, Freezer, Directv, AC, Furnace, queen bed, Dinette converts to a full bed, Hot water heater, Shower, toilet. 35 gallon fresh water tank. 40 pounds of propane, 2000 watt generator, 200 watts of solar panels 240 AH of deep cycle batteries, 3 burner range, oven, microwave. roof rack that holds two kayaks Bike rack for 4 bikes. The truck has a loaded range of 450 miles on 35 gallons of diesel at 70mph much more if we cruse at less than 65.