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Old 12-15-2014, 02:03 PM   #11
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Re: VW Eurovan Camper into Sprinter

@Windguy - I want an enclosed bathroom because my wife, daughter, and mother-in-law would prefer it that way, but I want it to take up less room. My solution is an expanding bathroom. It doesn't have to be in the closed position all the time. It would be nice to push it closed when I want to haul something. I am surprised that there aren't units available.
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Old 12-15-2014, 07:15 PM   #12
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Re: VW Eurovan Camper into Sprinter

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Originally Posted by jme3505
@Windguy - I want an enclosed bathroom because my wife, daughter, and mother-in-law would prefer it that way, but I want it to take up less room. My solution is an expanding bathroom. It doesn't have to be in the closed position all the time. It would be nice to push it closed when I want to haul something. I am surprised that there aren't units available.
best to keep all those girls happy
have you put together a floor plan yet?
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Old 12-15-2014, 11:06 PM   #13
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Re: VW Eurovan Camper into Sprinter

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have you put together a floor plan yet?
I don't want to highjack this thread. I really am not going to do a "floor plan" just but a bath on one side in the back and a kitchenette on the other. Two rows of passenger seating in the front. Haven't figured the sleeping arrangements. Maybe a penthouse roof. The girls just want a van for traveling.
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Old 01-08-2015, 12:22 AM   #14
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Re: VW Eurovan Camper into Sprinter

hi Davidbocco, sorry for the tardy response to your question asking what folks like about the sprinter versus their VW (I assume you are talking about the VW Westfallia). But here is my rambling comparison. We still have a 1991 Westy 2WD in Ashland OR (our second home and home to at least one working VW Westy per neighborhood block) with 100K miles (our third westy) and a 2012 Sportsmobile Sprinter (RB, stone grey) with pop top at home in Anchorage AK. I would say the pluses and minus fall into to two basic categories: the Van Platform and the Van Buildout.

Westy Buildout:
Positive: Quality construction, no rattles. a lot of camping functionality but very limited space to do multiple activities together at the same time when the weather outside is nasty unless you retreat to the loft. Very cool euro intergration of stove and sink in one stainless steel surface so easy to clean.
Easy one-latch push up pop top.
Everybody comes up to tell you about the Westy they once had.
Negatives: The propane refrigerator never worked properly in our Westy II or our Westy III. Lots of little deep storage locations in cupboards etc. but you have to pull every thing out to get to whats in back.No body insulation for thermal or sound reduction. Relatively dim house lighting, but that was normal for that age of technology. Engine and road noise makes it impossible to have conversations with anyone riding in the back seat while on the road. Crappy rear heating system, engine heat is used via long hoses to the coolant system. It gets hot in the back in summer unless you manually shutoff the circulation valve under the seat. Control of the temperature is up front and consist of only adjusting the fan speed on the back heater which is noisy and makes it even harder to hear sitting in the back. No heat output unless the engine is running. Limited on board water storage, no grey water storage, Relatively low rear bench for long legged folks
It fits through a 7 foot high garage door opening. And it is easy to lift and put a canoe on top for tall folks. Way too high to try that on the Sprinter.
VW Van:
Positives: Great visibility (especially front and down), nimble turning, and handling on dry surfaces. Great underbody clearance for rutted roads and not much front or rear overhang (except for the front air damn skirt). Tracks pretty solid in moderate crosswinds. Amazing chassis safety engineering: Westy II was destroyed in a +50 mph front impact when this guy suddenly swerved right into the incoming lane. We plowed through a Chrysler Sebring, watching their airbags deploy and we walked away (with a very sore chest from the seatbelt) via still operable front doors! That big VW steering wheel rotate forward and never touched me. And value: The insurance companing paid us 25% more for our now high mileage 89 Westy II than we had originally paid for it 10 years earlier because of recent sales records on CL.They proposed the settlement amount without being pushed. Westys hold their value.
Negatives: Gutless on hwy climbs. lots of road and engine noise while at highway speeds. Seat is not high enough and does not slide far enough back for my long legs on long road trips. Stability is kind of spooky on slippery surfaces, and too old to have antilock or progressive brakes. Cold idle is very noisy with lots of poorly combusted fumes around the campsite if you need heat in the morning. Very weak output driving headlamps. No built in cup holders, limited front cabin storage Watch swinging in an out of the seats above the front tires - easy to get mud on jackets and dresses. Decent gas mileage for a 3 speed automatic.

SMB Sprinter Buildout: Positives: Deep padded accessible full extension drawers to access what you need instead of deep in accessible shelves! Very comfortable and adjustable cockpit seats and adult height rear bench seats! Great visibility (we have windows everywhere and no wind noise). No rattles so far with 14K miles, 7K on alaska service grade roads. Love the pretty quiet diesel heater in the back with true temperature control and fan speed. Under chassis heater does radiate noise in campgrounds. Our layout is roomy enough for two or more tall people to do things without having to put things all away first or being in the way. More onboard water storage capacity and grey water storage. A reliable electric refer. Reliable solar generation system. noticeably quieter regarding road noise and an insulated floor for cold weather camping. Reliable powered pop top with better fabric to retain heat and keep out drafts and rain. But the latching is fussier and you have to make sure it is aligned when you put it down - something we never have to worry about with the Westy. Bright Low energy lighting. Requires a 9 foot high minimum garage door - not available in most typical homes. And will definitely not fit into a parking structure. Fewer folks come up to ask about the SMB than will come up to talk to you about The Westy they had years ago.

Sprinter RB Van: Great front visibility (except its hard with the curved hood to estimate where your front bumper is). controls are easy to reach, multiple cupholders, storage, airbags, progressive antilock brakes, strong crisp headlamps, very agile for its size with a tight turning radius easy to park. Easy to access engine compartment, awkward to inspect or service under frame battery location. Our buildout is steady at highway speeds and easy to steer in high winds along the Turnagain Arm. More than adequate acceleration and ability to maintain highway speeds regardless of grade. The diesel engine is pretty quiet at idle and for late night campground arrivals versus the Westy or those turbo diesel fords. But diesel is more expensive fuel than gas. Much longer periods and miles between service than the VW. Stealth, a lot of people assume our SMB with stone grey paint and big heavily tintd side windows is a passenger van, not a camper- unless we have the top up. We have slept in it in parking lots and along small town streets to catch early morning ferries without being hassled for camping. A VW Westy looks like a camper, top up or down and I have been asked to move at least once in similar circumstances. Take the VW on a ferry and they give you the car rate no question. Take the sprinter and ask for the car rate and every time they go out and measure it rain or shine, to verify it is not more the 21 feet long (max length for a car rate) and they looked surprised that it is only that long. Value: much more spendy than a ford van platform but they do appear to maintain value in the used market, but not as good as the 22 year old Westy which is currently worth more than 45% of its original retail price and climbing if we keep it in good shape.
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Old 01-08-2015, 10:02 AM   #15
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Re: VW Eurovan Camper into Sprinter

Here is video from a local company that has been doing van conversions for a long time.
Getaway RV. Check the shower
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Old 02-09-2015, 06:38 PM   #16
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Re: VW Eurovan Camper into Sprinter

Quote:
Originally Posted by Spenard
hi Davidbocco, sorry for the tardy response to your question asking what folks like about the sprinter versus their VW (I assume you are talking about the VW Westfallia). But here is my rambling comparison. We still have a 1991 Westy 2WD in Ashland OR (our second home and home to at least one working VW Westy per neighborhood block) with 100K miles (our third westy) and a 2012 Sportsmobile Sprinter (RB, stone grey) with pop top at home in Anchorage AK. I would say the pluses and minus fall into to two basic categories: the Van Platform and the Van Buildout.

Westy Buildout:
Positive: Quality construction, no rattles. a lot of camping functionality but very limited space to do multiple activities together at the same time when the weather outside is nasty unless you retreat to the loft. Very cool euro intergration of stove and sink in one stainless steel surface so easy to clean.
Easy one-latch push up pop top.
Everybody comes up to tell you about the Westy they once had.
Negatives: The propane refrigerator never worked properly in our Westy II or our Westy III. Lots of little deep storage locations in cupboards etc. but you have to pull every thing out to get to whats in back.No body insulation for thermal or sound reduction. Relatively dim house lighting, but that was normal for that age of technology. Engine and road noise makes it impossible to have conversations with anyone riding in the back seat while on the road. Crappy rear heating system, engine heat is used via long hoses to the coolant system. It gets hot in the back in summer unless you manually shutoff the circulation valve under the seat. Control of the temperature is up front and consist of only adjusting the fan speed on the back heater which is noisy and makes it even harder to hear sitting in the back. No heat output unless the engine is running. Limited on board water storage, no grey water storage, Relatively low rear bench for long legged folks
It fits through a 7 foot high garage door opening. And it is easy to lift and put a canoe on top for tall folks. Way too high to try that on the Sprinter.
VW Van:
Positives: Great visibility (especially front and down), nimble turning, and handling on dry surfaces. Great underbody clearance for rutted roads and not much front or rear overhang (except for the front air damn skirt). Tracks pretty solid in moderate crosswinds. Amazing chassis safety engineering: Westy II was destroyed in a +50 mph front impact when this guy suddenly swerved right into the incoming lane. We plowed through a Chrysler Sebring, watching their airbags deploy and we walked away (with a very sore chest from the seatbelt) via still operable front doors! That big VW steering wheel rotate forward and never touched me. And value: The insurance companing paid us 25% more for our now high mileage 89 Westy II than we had originally paid for it 10 years earlier because of recent sales records on CL.They proposed the settlement amount without being pushed. Westys hold their value.
Negatives: Gutless on hwy climbs. lots of road and engine noise while at highway speeds. Seat is not high enough and does not slide far enough back for my long legs on long road trips. Stability is kind of spooky on slippery surfaces, and too old to have antilock or progressive brakes. Cold idle is very noisy with lots of poorly combusted fumes around the campsite if you need heat in the morning. Very weak output driving headlamps. No built in cup holders, limited front cabin storage Watch swinging in an out of the seats above the front tires - easy to get mud on jackets and dresses. Decent gas mileage for a 3 speed automatic.

SMB Sprinter Buildout: Positives: Deep padded accessible full extension drawers to access what you need instead of deep in accessible shelves! Very comfortable and adjustable cockpit seats and adult height rear bench seats! Great visibility (we have windows everywhere and no wind noise). No rattles so far with 14K miles, 7K on alaska service grade roads. Love the pretty quiet diesel heater in the back with true temperature control and fan speed. Under chassis heater does radiate noise in campgrounds. Our layout is roomy enough for two or more tall people to do things without having to put things all away first or being in the way. More onboard water storage capacity and grey water storage. A reliable electric refer. Reliable solar generation system. noticeably quieter regarding road noise and an insulated floor for cold weather camping. Reliable powered pop top with better fabric to retain heat and keep out drafts and rain. But the latching is fussier and you have to make sure it is aligned when you put it down - something we never have to worry about with the Westy. Bright Low energy lighting. Requires a 9 foot high minimum garage door - not available in most typical homes. And will definitely not fit into a parking structure. Fewer folks come up to ask about the SMB than will come up to talk to you about The Westy they had years ago.

Sprinter RB Van: Great front visibility (except its hard with the curved hood to estimate where your front bumper is). controls are easy to reach, multiple cupholders, storage, airbags, progressive antilock brakes, strong crisp headlamps, very agile for its size with a tight turning radius easy to park. Easy to access engine compartment, awkward to inspect or service under frame battery location. Our buildout is steady at highway speeds and easy to steer in high winds along the Turnagain Arm. More than adequate acceleration and ability to maintain highway speeds regardless of grade. The diesel engine is pretty quiet at idle and for late night campground arrivals versus the Westy or those turbo diesel fords. But diesel is more expensive fuel than gas. Much longer periods and miles between service than the VW. Stealth, a lot of people assume our SMB with stone grey paint and big heavily tintd side windows is a passenger van, not a camper- unless we have the top up. We have slept in it in parking lots and along small town streets to catch early morning ferries without being hassled for camping. A VW Westy looks like a camper, top up or down and I have been asked to move at least once in similar circumstances. Take the VW on a ferry and they give you the car rate no question. Take the sprinter and ask for the car rate and every time they go out and measure it rain or shine, to verify it is not more the 21 feet long (max length for a car rate) and they looked surprised that it is only that long. Value: much more spendy than a ford van platform but they do appear to maintain value in the used market, but not as good as the 22 year old Westy which is currently worth more than 45% of its original retail price and climbing if we keep it in good shape.
That ^ was a very informative post - thank you for taking the time to write that! I learned a lot from it. I would think it almost warrants an excerpted sticky on Sprinter vs VW Westfalias!

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