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Old 04-15-2014, 02:50 PM   #11
Dia
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Re: Please critique this van!

Quote:
Originally Posted by BroncoHauler
I'd ask SMB if there's room to install another Captain's seat by the side barn doors (provided the cooler is removed).

Herb
Great idea! Looks like there might be.
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Old 04-15-2014, 02:53 PM   #12
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Re: Please critique this van!

I am confused about the 09's 200A DC option. Is that a converter? Seems I didn't see anything about house batteries or did I just miss that? I'm not too sure about the refrigerator and would rather have it built in. Hauling kids might be another problem with the 09. No windows might be a deal breaker.

I've always prefered the standard SMB builds both for conveniance and resale. I don't use my sink/shower or inside stove much but it sure is nice. My days of being a minimalist are probably over and although I still cook outside most of the time, having a standard type build allowing to do things inside in the warm comfort of the van is something I'm glad I can do. I'm happy I got what I wanted and didn't compromise much. I do understand cost savings vs waiting for the right one to come along though. It's hard to do. FWIW I'd consider higher mileage as those vans with over 200K. Most of these vans get the mileage from long drives and that does add up fast. I might be more concerned if it either van was used as a daily driver.
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Old 04-15-2014, 03:06 PM   #13
Dia
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Re: Please critique this van!

I'm not sure about the sitch with house batteries. I'd think the original owner would've had house batteries in the airstream, but if there's a generator, what's it charging? One of the ottomans has a large vent on the panel under the cushion, so I don't know what that's about, either. Can't be the generator, right? It would have to vent to the outside.

Something electrical - a TV maybe? - used to be mounted on that passenger side cabinet. You can still see the plugs hanging. Dunno what that's about either.
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Old 04-15-2014, 03:16 PM   #14
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Re: Please critique this van!

SMB TX says there's room for a 3rd capt. $2200 - which sounds like it might be Fam Vans time.
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Old 04-15-2014, 03:26 PM   #15
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Re: Please critique this van!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dia
SMB TX says there's room for a 3rd capt. $2200 - which sounds like it might be Fam Vans time.
$2200? Ouch.

What are the round things on the rear of the van body on both the passenger's and driver's side? Some kind of vents?


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Old 04-15-2014, 04:52 PM   #16
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Re: Please critique this van!

Quote:
Originally Posted by BroncoHauler
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dia
SMB TX says there's room for a 3rd capt. $2200 - which sounds like it might be Fam Vans time.
$2200? Ouch.

What are the round things on the rear of the van body on both the passenger's and driver's side? Some kind of vents?


Herb
Those are those outdoor lights they put on big white box campers. Not really very good looking on a van (Sorry Dia, they're hideous )

$2200 for a seat? I would think $500 installed. I'm hoping that includes a good bit of work retrofitting a seat belt in to the wall, but it should still only be half of their quoted price.

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Old 04-15-2014, 05:08 PM   #17
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Re: Please critique this van!

Re: those lights - Ohhhh, so that's what those are! They looked like vents to me, too, but I couldn't figure out what they were venting.

@Eric - Hrmpf! And what's wrong with the tap-light look, hmmm? I'll get me some fuzzy dice to hang off the rearview and then I'll be stylin!
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Old 04-15-2014, 05:23 PM   #18
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Re: Please critique this van!

I had very similar requirements, wanted to seat 4 forward, with car seats.

We ended up building ourselves, still in progress...

Two captains in second row in swivels, behind seats on driver side, cabinet with drawers, cabinet with sink, then tall cab that hides water tank and pump, with fridge and pantry above.

Then going with a fold out gaucho style bed on pax side, with small closet in back.

Having Derek do pop-top this spring. So that we can sleep two adults up top and two down low, put the baby in the "kids bed" that The CCV top allows.
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Old 04-21-2014, 10:35 AM   #19
Dia
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Re: Please critique this van!

Price dropped another 2k over Easter weekend. Called @8am this morning to put a deposit on it and someone beat us to the punch. Darn time zones! (We're in CA, van's in Texas.)

We're in back-up position if the other deal falls through.

We're also not aggressively looking. The exact right thing at the right price might get us to jump, but we're back on the fence for another few months otherwise.
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Old 04-21-2014, 12:44 PM   #20
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Re: Please critique this van

I think that the ride for the passenger(s) in the 2009 van is gonna be hideous. and you have to consider what happens when you're camped two days in the rain in that. Only hobbits can live in there now, of course, without a top. But even when you get one the passenger is a mile from the two reversed front seats. Not very sociable, especially if someone is doing stuff in the middle. Maybe no biggie if it's just a kid, who wants to be as far away as possible, but still.

And I also don't like the 2003 for group seating. That layout splits the van in half, and makes the front seats sort of useless. The other 2003 at TX, the one at $20.9k, looks nicer for passengers to me, with that long gaucho. Not so good on the road, but definitely nicer in camp since everyone is closer, but not too close, and looking out a window.

I think the EB50 is really popular with owners who have more than one passenger for a reason (and why that's a common layout for non-SMBs as well. It's probably the most comfortable for back seat passengers, and more flexible and useful than extra captain's chairs, which take up a lot of room and are not good for much else.

Putting a top on is expensive and a very big hassle. And IMHO it's not worth having a van for camping without one, penthouse or otherwise. Might as well sleep in the back of a pickup, or just get a passenger van and take out the seats.
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