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Advice on Westy Camper for sale.
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Woody2071
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 15, 2019 12:52 pm    Post subject: Advice on Westy Camper for sale. Reply with quote

First I like to thank anyone who offers advice on the Westy I will be looking at.
I have lived on a boat for about 10 years and plan on moving to more land based travels.

I would appreciate some advice what to look for and anyone's thoughts on this van I will be going to see tomorrow.

https://santabarbara.craigslist.org/cto/d/summerland-vanagon-westfalia-new-21/6841458195.html

The asking price is $24,500. I am looking for a turnkey that I can add upgrades or changes to as I travel.

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I am sorry if I am supposed to post this elsewhere. The closest pinned topic I could find is the one where people post good deals. That did not seem to be the place to post asking for advice.

Thank you for your help.
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vanis13
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 15, 2019 1:20 pm    Post subject: Re: Advice on Westy Camper for sale. Reply with quote

Quote:
~~I have paperwork/receipts to prove that this literally does have a NEW 2.1 liter engine...That cost well over $5000. It had zero miles on it when it was installed. It now has ~600. It literally is THAT new.

~~600 miles ago it had a major tune up...at least that's the most recent receipt that I can find. But that said, it runs so smoothly that I have to believe that this was done again recently.


guess it had a major tuneup when it was new?

Quote:
Truly, you can keep this van for a couple of years and when you want to sell, you'll MAKE money on it for sure.


how is he going to guarantee it? I propose. OK, you give it to me for $1000 now, I'll keep it for a couple years, sell it and give you what ever comes in over the $24,500 you are asking.

Quote:
~~There is an EXTRA set of seats that goes with the van. They are just "set" in the Westy right now and can be "mounted" properly if you want to be able to carry 7 people.


wonder how they are going to do that...4 stock westy +1 w.a jump seat OR +2 with a slide-in but not both.

boy, I wish I could write as well as that seller


[Moderator edit: Multiple subsequent posts by this forum member combined into this first reply.]
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Eric_Taylor
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 15, 2019 1:29 pm    Post subject: Re: Advice on Westy Camper for sale. Reply with quote

It looks like it might just be a really nice van. That price is not unreasonable, if it is what it says it it.

A few things stand out to me.

The re-paint could be a great thing, or a terrible thing. I would want to see before pictures if possible, and I would want to check for rust. My van had a re-paint and from a few feet looks great. When you get up close, you see they just painted over a little kitchen rust and a little seam rust. I paid a fair price considering, so no worries, but at this price, I would want to be sure there was a proper job done.

The 2.1 is the later model motor. 84 would have been a 1.9 with it's own cooling system setup. Who made the change? How? What documentation, assurances, etc. can they provide to make sure this isn't a problem? Also, at only 600 miles, why sell? I'd want a broken in motor that I know will last.

The transmission is listed as basically new. There is nearly no way that's true, and it was likely rebuilt. Again, by who? where? How extensively?

The wheels are also late model and add again to the idea that someone has made a lot of changes to the van. Those might be great, but I'd want to know a lot about how they happened for this price.

Personally, this van does not appeal to me at this price. If you're willing to go to this price range, there are a lot of well kept late model vans with original paint out there. There were a lot of running changes between 84 and 91. My van is a 91, so maybe i'm biased, but every time I do work on it and have to research the differences, the 91 ends up having a bunch of nice changes made to it that, for this price, I think are worth looking for. This is my subjective opinion, and I even really like that two tone brown they did on the wolfie's in the mid 80's.
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Eric_Taylor
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 15, 2019 1:33 pm    Post subject: Re: Advice on Westy Camper for sale. Reply with quote

I know this is far away from you, but here is a nice looking one I've seen for sale for a little while. This appears to be a well cared for late model van, in nice shape.

https://portland.craigslist.org/mlt/cto/d/albany-1990-vw-westfalia-camper/6811859200.html
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campism
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 15, 2019 1:33 pm    Post subject: Re: Advice on Westy Camper for sale. Reply with quote

vanis13 wrote:
boy, I wish I could write as well as that seller

You CAN. "All" you need to do is use FULL caps and quotation marks to "emphasize" what your composition does NOT.

I prefer bold and italics, myself.
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Zeitgeist 13
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 15, 2019 1:40 pm    Post subject: Re: Advice on Westy Camper for sale. Reply with quote

Is that brown lower section supposed to be METALLIC?!! The paint's too damned SHINY!! Not enough EAGLES!!
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 15, 2019 1:58 pm    Post subject: Re: Advice on Westy Camper for sale. Reply with quote

If you feel that you are in love with this Vanagon, maybe offer $15K. If you are NOT in love at first sight (when you get there, I guess) then there will be a later year model that will show up soon enough that you WILL BE. I can't see myself in that Vanagon, and I am real easy to please.
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Wellington
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 15, 2019 2:00 pm    Post subject: Re: Advice on Westy Camper for sale. Reply with quote

Rear side markers should have been changed, they look sun burnt.
I'd like to know how the 2,1 has converted: simple crank and piston swap, or entire wiring harness and newer ECU, and the cooling system, still have the hard to find 1.9 coolant hoses or the newer 2,1 cooling system.
Cruise not hooked up? If it was already there that is a no brainer.
I didn't see AC listed, for that price I'd need AC.
Kind of boring original wheels, I'd expect better.
I guess to me its a lot of money for ordinary with a paint job that could be hiding something.
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shagginwagon83
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 15, 2019 2:02 pm    Post subject: Re: Advice on Westy Camper for sale. Reply with quote

"It runs perfectly. I wouldn't hesitate taking it to Anchorage, Guadalajara, or Patagonia "

"All the rubber looks great. "

"The thermostat, and any questionable hoses. (yes, it's water cooled) "
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davevickery
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 15, 2019 2:24 pm    Post subject: Re: Advice on Westy Camper for sale. Reply with quote

I don't like it. Could be just my impression. Sorry to be negative.

It screams "FLIPPER" to me. I am offended by the over the top language in the ad for what appears to be a pretty ordinary early Vanagon. A van that just had a bunch of work done and being sold by a flipper is going to be back and forth to the shop in the near future. I'd rather have one that just came back from Patagonia than hollow claims that this one is ready to go there.

But I haven't seen it and don't know how wide a search area you are considering or how quickly you want to get one.

The 2.1 engine swap for california might actually present a problem. I don't know. Most likely they would not notice it was changed, maybe it doesn't matter if they do notice, but I certainly wouldn't mention it to a smog station.

If you want suggestions on other candidates, let us know.
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AZ_CreamPuff
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 15, 2019 2:36 pm    Post subject: Re: Advice on Westy Camper for sale. Reply with quote

For 25K I would want a van with at least new hookup covers and a fuel tank reseal already done...25k could be a fair price in California if the engine and transmission work was truly what the said it was. Not really sure what the CA market is though.
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dobryan
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 15, 2019 3:02 pm    Post subject: Re: Advice on Westy Camper for sale. Reply with quote

Welcome to the samba.

If you have 25k to spend you should not jump in yet. That is a realistic price to get a well sorted stock westy. We can help. Spend some time with us and we’ll help you. Do not jump on that bus just because I hate the hype of the add.
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 15, 2019 3:39 pm    Post subject: Re: Advice on Westy Camper for sale. Reply with quote

Many good points already. I'd never spend 25K on a van with a brown interior (I don't like the color and the plastic in my '85 began to crumble which hasn't happened to my '90). That van also leaves a bit to be desired for that price.

If you have $25K to spend you'll came across other vans (some with engine conversions) that are more turn-key than that one. Test drive a few, try to test drive a Subie or a 1.8 or a Bostig to compare. The right van will come along.
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Woody2071
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 15, 2019 4:00 pm    Post subject: Re: Advice on Westy Camper for sale. Reply with quote

Thank you everyone.

I am not in a real hurry.

I also suspected this guy mainly focuses on cosmetics and just worried it can run during a test drive. He had another for sale not too long ago. So he likely puts as little money and effort into them as possible.

I found another one in the same area so will be looking at that one to.

https://santabarbara.craigslist.org/cto/d/santa-barbara-1982-vanagon-westfalia/6839245270.html

Anyone with any experience with the diesel engines in these things? I'll test drive it, but suspect climbing hills will be slow and painful. Good thing the area has a lot of steep hills to choose from.

Once again thank you for all the replies. Nice to see a very active community here.
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Woody2071
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 15, 2019 4:10 pm    Post subject: Re: Advice on Westy Camper for sale. Reply with quote

davevickery wrote:
I don't like it. Could be just my impression. Sorry to be negative.

It screams "FLIPPER" to me.

The 2.1 engine swap for california might actually present a problem. I don't know. Most likely they would not notice it was changed, maybe it doesn't matter if they do notice, but I certainly wouldn't mention it to a smog station.

If you want suggestions on other candidates, let us know.


One reason I posted here is I suspect this guy just flips them. Which I assume means he focuses a lot on cosmetics and doing just enough to have it run well during a test drive. He made a video for another one about 3 months ago.
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elizer Premium Member
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 15, 2019 4:34 pm    Post subject: Re: Advice on Westy Camper for sale. Reply with quote

https://santabarbara.craigslist.org/cto/d/santa-barbara-1982-vanagon-westfalia/6839245270.html

The 1.9td in that westy is considered to be the most desirable of the oem diesels offered in the westy. I think its still a little overpriced. The coating on the lower part could be hiding stuff and usually is frowned upon. But he does have some desirable upgrades. RMW bumpers/swingarm and fridge. Maybe more info on what he has done could warrant the price. I would prefer that one over the original one you posted.

Let me also add that you shouldn't limit yourself to driving distance. Be willing to fly and take a look you could find a better westy for cheaper. California commands premium prices while you may find cheaper farther west. Also never be worried about walking away even if you fly to see one.
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?Waldo?
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 15, 2019 4:54 pm    Post subject: Re: Advice on Westy Camper for sale. Reply with quote

The 1.9TD (AAZ) was never offered stock in a Vanagon and the TDI's are more desirable.

I would also prefer that one over the one posted by the OP.
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davevickery
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 15, 2019 5:29 pm    Post subject: Re: Advice on Westy Camper for sale. Reply with quote

Of the ones in So Cal, this looks like a good bet. It is a later model which comes stock with a 2.1 engine and other upgrades and it costs less than that 84. A stock van in well maintained condition is a plus when you take it to the shop to fix something. https://www.thesamba.com/vw/classifieds/detail.php?id=2249273

And the way the ad is worded gives me a better feeling about the condition.
Image may have been reduced in size. Click image to view fullscreen.




And here is one listed on Craigslist that seems comparable to the above. Nice original van with recent paint and in good mechanical condition. Same price roughly as the one above but a little farther away. It is also a late model and even lower miles. Not as many details on mechanical condition with this one, but to me sure makes that '84 look overpriced.
https://www.thesamba.com/vw/classifieds/pix/8242587.jpg

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Last edited by davevickery on Fri Mar 15, 2019 5:57 pm; edited 1 time in total
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elizer Premium Member
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 15, 2019 5:46 pm    Post subject: Re: Advice on Westy Camper for sale. Reply with quote

?Waldo? wrote:
The 1.9TD (AAZ) was never offered stock in a Vanagon and the TDI's are more desirable.

I would also prefer that one over the one posted by the OP.

\
Ahh I meant the 1.6td. I must have had a bite of dyslexia. I appreciate the correction.
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AZ Landshaper
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 15, 2019 6:41 pm    Post subject: Re: Advice on Westy Camper for sale. Reply with quote

Id rather buy a well worn van that someone has sorted out and driven like mad. And you can get one of those for 2/3 the cost of that van. Boy the flipper isnt gonna like this thread.

Pretty does not equate reliable. There are a few things that stick out here and the gents above have hit on most of them. Personally i like reliablilty and practicality over looks. Id like to know how mnay miles have been put on the van in the last two years. All these vans w new motors or recent rebuilds scream “ i had problems, now im selling”.
Hang around and make it known your looking. Something will pop in and tickle yoyr fancy. Leave that one for someone who needs a “pretty” van. Buy a van you can drive and not worry about scratching the shiny paint on.
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