1992 RHD 1,6TD Syncro Panel Van Price: £9500
NOTE: This van is based in Manchester, UK.
This is a 1992 Panel Van / Tin Top Syncro with front and rear diff-locks [both working]. 127000 miles. MOT'd til end of July. It's also a RHD which makes it doubly rare. I've been told there were only 32000 of these ever produced.
I bought the van about 6 months ago with a view to getting it ready for the summer. But a wet miserable winter which lasted almost until April severely dented my plans. I'm one of those unfortunates without a garage, who has to tinker on the driveway. So rain often stops play.
Anyway, I've regretfully decided that I've just not got the time, the money, or the facilities to do this van justice. So with a heavy heart, I'm going to bite the bullet and let it go to someone else who can give it the TLC it needs.
EXTERIOR / BODYWORK
The general condition of the bodywork is good. I followed the standard advice of prioritising bodywork over mechanicals and, in that regard, it's very solid with only a few small patches of surface rust here and there, which I've been sanding and priming as and when. Underneath is also pretty rust free.
It's a tin-top panel van and the roof has been covered in tread-plate, with a sturdy roof rack with front and rear spotlights. There is also a roof mounted solar panel which powers the leisure battery. There is also a wind-out Famma awning.
Mechanically things seem mostly pretty good. No drips of oil or fluids from engine, tranny gearbox or diff. Engine starts on the button . Both front and rear diffs work. VC seems to be functional. I've only ever had the occasional brief bit of 'scrubbing' when doing tight manoeuvring to park.
All suspension and braking is working fine. Some surface rust on trailing arms, drums, etc. But it is only surface and would buff off easily. Prop shaft guards and front underneath cover are solid and present. Rear underneath engine cover is missing.
The engine is the 1,6TD JX. It starts and runs well and pulls well. According to previous owner, the engine had a new head 20000 miles ago but he had no proof of this. The engine sounds noisy and quite 'tappety' to me when accelerating up through 1st & 2nd gear but is quieter in 3rd & 4th. Measuring the valve clearances is one of the things on my 'todo list. But also the lack of bottom engine covers could be contributing to the noise.
Interior is clean and provides a very basic camper setup. Walls are insulated and carpeted and there is a unit with sink / cooker / fridge. There is also a full width rock'n'roll bed.
Well, that's the good stuff out of the way. Now onto the not-so-good.
Since I've bought this van and started tinkering on it, I've noticed that it's suffering heavily from "Previous Owner Syndrome". You know that scenario where, every time you start working on an area you find some bolt missing, or a rounded off screw, or a wire that doesn't attach to anything, or something that's been botched together in some way.
It's meant that, for my piece of mind, I'd really want to spend a good long time thoroughly going over the van and checking and putting right all the Previous Owner botches I come across, before I'd trust the van to go off on the kind of long expeditions I was planning. And, as I've said before, it's not going to happen this year and in a few months time we'll be into the crappy weather again when I'll not be able to get working on it that often.
Hence my decision to sell. I'f I had a garage or a workshop, there's no way I'd be letting this van go. I'd strip it down and rebuild it and it would be a fantastic wee van. But it just ain't to be. Anyway, I'll list the known problems and anything I've done to fix them and any other bits'n'bobs I've sorted since I've had it:
* When I first bought it, the gear-change was all over the shop. It was impossible to get it into first and it would jump out of 4th, between 45 & 50mph
I've since replaced all balls/bearings/etc. in the gear linkage. Ditto in the gearstick & also the two tips on the selector lever. Also drained and replaced gearbox oil [no nasty shrapnel found on drain plug]. It now changes gear more positively, although the new prongs on the selector fork haven't bedded in yet, so it's still a bit 'rubby' at the front end. I've been on the motorway and had it up to 70mph without it jumping out of gear. But this was only a short 20 minute journey, so I'm not sure if the gearbox problem is gone, or only happens when it's hot.
* Noisy Engine
As mentioned above. The engine is noisy and 'tappety' sounding accelerating up through 1st & 2nd, but not so bad in 3rd & 4th. Previous Owner had it 5 years and only put 200 miles on it, so some of that might be due to long-term standing. It seems to have quietened down slightly since I've been using it [or maybe I'm just getting used to it!]. May need valve clearances adjusting, or maybe down to missing bottom engine covers.
* Radiator Fan not working at Low Speed
I've had the radiator fan come on briefly a couple of times on really hot days, when idling in traffic. But it's come on at full 747 mode. I've never heard it come on at low speed mode. So think there might be some electrical problem there.
JOBS DONE SO FAR
* Refurb gear linkage [replace all balls / bellows / bearings /etc]
* Refurb gear stick [replace all balls / bellows / bearings /etc]
* Replace Gearbox and front diff oil.
* Replace Cam Belt
* New Fuel filter
* Engine flush and oil change [being done this week]
* New Oil filter [being done this week
The van starts an drives and is taxed and MOT'd til end of July [although, obviously tax isn't transferrable any more] and I have the V5 [log book] in my name. But I'd advise potential buyers –especially if you're coming from a long distance– to trailer it away just so you can give it the proper once over before taking it on any epic expeditions.
I'm based in central Manchester and work from home. So viewing is available [and recommended] most week days. Export is also possible, but you'd have to arrange all that yourself as I wouldn't have a clue how to go about it.
Phew! –I think that just about covers everything. But any questions, feel free to send me a PM.
[I'll add some more updated pictures later. Since these were taken, I've removed the stickers from the outside and sanded and primed a couple of surface rust patches.]