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Should I buy this bus?!? '74 Campmobile
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SamboSamba22
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PostPosted: Sun Aug 09, 2015 9:29 am    Post subject: Should I buy this bus?!? '74 Campmobile Reply with quote

I have a lady close to the house that is selling a 1974 Campmobile, mileage is just under 100k, not sure if odometer even works. Has been sitting to since '90, motor was rebuilt late '80's. Motor turns over freely, not sure why she parked it, said she had trouble keeping it idling, running rough and got tired of messing with it. Well 25 years later, I have the bus bug and love the bay windows. Underneath windshield is solid, wheel wells are solid, floors are solid aside from driver floor pan, which is salvageable. Aux battery tray is gone, but body is seemingly solid. I'm asking, knowledge ladies and gents, is this thing worth $1600, which is what her and I have currently agreed too. She started at 4k, which I know was unrealistic. All info is greatly appreciate! Thank and happy wrenching and enjoy all the beautiful windshield time you can get!!!
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Pinetops
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PostPosted: Sun Aug 09, 2015 9:40 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yes buy it. You posted 3 of the same pic, do you have any more? It does look like the nose may have been repainted at some point and there may be some bondo there, hard to say for sure from the pic though. Still worth $1600 if its mostly solid. I'd pay more than that for a complete, mostly solid late westy project. Plan on putting a couple grand (minimum, probably more) and a couple hundred hours to get it running safely and looking/functioning decently.
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Pinetops
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PostPosted: Sun Aug 09, 2015 9:47 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ok, I see your other pics in the gallery.

Added them to OG post.
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Pinetops
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PostPosted: Sun Aug 09, 2015 9:52 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Unless its an illusion it does look like there is some bondo cracking on the bottom right of the nose so expect to dig that out and either straighten the nose or cut and weld a section of the nose. It also has some surface rust in some other places but there is enough original paint to repair and blend those. Otherwise it looks solid in the pics. In my opinion $1600 is a good price, you could offer a little less with cash in your hand and see what she says but I'd buy this bus for $1600 any day of the week and feel good about it.
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PostPosted: Sun Aug 09, 2015 9:55 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

several practical things to consider ;
Do you have a couple of hundred dollars a month to throw at it
do you have the interest in learning how to fix it
do you have space to work on it
do yo have the tools ( Samba is a GREAT tool )
do you have the TIME
Do you have an understanding spouse Wink
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PostPosted: Sun Aug 09, 2015 9:56 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

It has A/C too! You'll want a modern compressor if you want to use it but that's cool though.
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Tcash Premium Member
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PostPosted: Sun Aug 09, 2015 10:33 am    Post subject: Reply with quote


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SamboSamba22
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PostPosted: Sun Aug 09, 2015 10:34 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Pinetops: Indeed I believe there is bondo work on the nose, as though I am no expert, I noticed a separation between paint and body as seen in the photo. Does have A/C, and the motor looks fairly clean, I wish the motor ran, but the thing turns with ease. I'm a little confused about the L jetronic setup, thinking that the 74 year model was dual carbed and fuel injection came out in early 75. I absolutely fell in love with the bus, and the pop-top is just so cool, I'm trying not be unrational on the potential purchase. I was really impressed with it's condition for being all original and 40 years old. Is the type 4 worth rebuilding? Input on type 1 conversion? Is 74 a problametic year model?
Grandpa Pete: That is practically my plan, I want to get it running, though I know with time and funds, it will be a gradual process. I am mechanically inclined, but by no means am I a mechanic. Wiring looks all intact and seems to have not been hacked with, my intentions with buying the bus would be to remove tank, flush it, get new fuel lines, clean carbs, new plugs, and see if with a new battery if I can get the motor to turn and hopefully fire. My biggest concern with this bus is the motor and transmission, as they are the most upfront costly items necessary to truly enjoy the bus. Appearance and personal touch are things I plan to do gradually, with available time and available funds. Doing my own work and learning along the way, as frustating as I am afraid it is going to be, is why I want it. I want to bring it back to life, and put air in its lungs and miles on the wheels.
Thank you guys for such quick responses, and please know I greatly appreciate all input, good and bad, and I ask for your honesty.
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Pinetops
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PostPosted: Sun Aug 09, 2015 11:14 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yep, the type 4 is worth rebuilding but yours may not need rebuilding. You may get lucky. A type 1 conversion is not ideal because the transmission is geared for type 4. It can and has been done many times though. Type 4 = more power which is good for a heavy, loaded late model westfalia. 1974 is a not a problematic year, other than the slightly more expensive to rebuild type 4. Some prefer early bays, some prefer late. The late bays have better frontal crash safety, more power, a more usable camping interior and disc brakes ('71 is only early bay year with disc's, unless you count '72's as early). The early bays are simpler to work on in some ways and some prefer the looks.

If you get it, just be prepared for it to be a part time job for a while to get it going again. These things are like members of the family and require attention. It is more than a vehicle, it is a lifestyle in some respects. If you want that then go for it, that is a good year and model bus to own.

You gotta start somewhere. If you get it and give up on it in 6 months or a year or whatever, message me and I'll probably buy it from you.
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PostPosted: Sun Aug 09, 2015 12:52 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I would offer $1300.00 cash in hundred dollar bills..

Yes you should buy it! I don't as much as these guys do but is that an AC unit system under the dash?
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PostPosted: Sun Aug 09, 2015 1:00 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Un practical things to consider.... I would pay $1600 for it if I had to and I just would do it. It has some options and it needs care, is it worth your time and care is what I would consider. If the EC looks okay I would take the chance and let it sit for a while if you need to.

Don't be in a rush to make it purr because if you have time you will be happier with it. It looks from the front of it pics that it is pretty OG those seats look great and the dash hasn't been gouged or tampered with.... I like it and would buy it. $1300 - $1650 maybe... Very Happy Cool Please buy it...
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PostPosted: Sun Aug 09, 2015 2:00 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Looks like a great rescue and project! And from what I can see, $1600 is a fair price. It will look a lot better after a good cleaning. Smile

Does it have an FI setup? If so, that must have come after, as a '74 would have come with dual carbs, I believe.

Go for it! Give that poor thing some real TLC, and welcome!
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PostPosted: Sun Aug 09, 2015 2:17 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Change the oil First.
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PostPosted: Sun Aug 09, 2015 3:32 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thank you all for answering everything so quickly and making the welcome a pleasant one! Tcash, that's the plan. Fresh oil, new lines from either a supply tank or wash out gas tank and perhaps seal it, with a fresh battery a see what's going on engine wise. I immediately felt I needed the bus, of course much work ahead of myself but I don't currently view this much different than older jeeps I'm familiar with working on, just takes time to learn and wrench, which I enjoy. Planned production date was Feb 1974, with an engine code AW. My great grandparents bought this very model new, same color in 74 I dream of reliving some adventures and creating new ones throughout the states. I want to use it, camp with it and discover how much fun it really will be. I'm familiar with frustrations with older vehicles so I'll be ready to do my mad dance and speak some sailor. But its the beauty of keeping the old bus alive, exploring the ideals of the good ole days I've always heard growing up about. So a checklist: motor, transaxle, brakes, what's other things that are keeping me from making my bus road worthy for some close adventures? Does the ac really make a difference in these old buses? How much weight does the top bed hold? Oh, I could ask a, million questions. Sorry for all the short stories, as you can tell I am excited. My father fixed up bugs going up, I never thought I'd want its big brother but man, as in that video "look at that cool guy in his cool bus", I want that to be me and my bus.
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PostPosted: Sun Aug 09, 2015 3:37 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

-Replace Fuel lines -or run a temporary gas can like you said to see if it will run (be careful to route and protect them properly, change them every two years at minimum)
-change oil
-rebuild and adjust carbs (it may crank without doing this but it will need to be done before driving.
-clean out tank (possibly replace fuel sender)
-fuel pump, needs to be working properly and not leaking
-spark plugs and wires
-timing set
-points dwell set, grease distributor cam
-valves adjusted
-battery

-then, try to crank it. You may get lucky. If the engine will run replace all the rubber brake lines, brake shoes, pads and cylinders.

-If the engine won't run, rebuild engine

Probably some other stuff I'm forgetting
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PostPosted: Sun Aug 09, 2015 3:47 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

So does this mean you got it? The work is going to add up quick, so pace yourself (and be ready for the domino effect), but 1600 for that?...I think that's a great price of admission and looks worth it. Congrats on getting bit by the (bus) bug!
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PostPosted: Sun Aug 09, 2015 6:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Pinetops! thanks for the checklist, I understand all and agree those things are necessary to see what situation the motor is in. My only concern mainly due to no experience working on the type 4, is the frequent valve adjustments.
Riverside, I have finalized a deal with the women who currently owns the bus, and has own it since the early 80's, with terrible heat and being almost two hours away, I've coordinated title verification and numbers between title and bus, so far so good, going to do sale midweek and pick up bus this coming weekend. As far as logistics go, the bus hasn't moved in almost three decades, has a surrounding of barns and sheds, settled in the ground. I am borrowing a car hauling but without a winch I'm a little worried on getting in onto the trailer. I've always bought rolling chassis, even though this bread loaf isn't moving with ease, I'm overwhelmed with excitement. I apologize with my crude familiarity with the site, my understanding of management and layout with become better as my frustrations become overwhelmed in the next few months.
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PostPosted: Sun Aug 09, 2015 6:34 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Congratulations!!!

Take a come-a-long at least.

http://www.amazon.com/Torin-T32052-Ton-Comealong-H...come+along

You can get them for $20 at tractor supply, walmart and other places, that's how you can pull the bus up onto the trailer. You also need ratchet straps and some chain with hooks would be useful. If you know anybody who messes with cars they can probably loan you this stuff. You can also get a cheap crank winch that you bolt to the trailer either one would work. Hopefully the tires hold air long enough to get it on and off the trailer. Otherwise you will need a set of rollers (wheel/tires that hold air and fit a bus). Sometimes the brakes get stuck after sitting for a long time. Bring PB blaster and a rubber mallet. You probably know all this but I'm mentioning it just in case.

The valve adjustments aren't that big a deal. Every 3000 miles and a lot of times you just check them and only have to adjust a couple. You'll get it, I believe in you!! All you have to do is want to learn.
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PostPosted: Sun Aug 09, 2015 7:29 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

brakes Idea
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PostPosted: Sun Aug 09, 2015 8:23 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Spray the 19 mm lug nuts with Rust penetrant when you go to make the deal.
As said the rear brake shoes will probably be rusted to the drums.
To free them strike the brake drums with a rubber mallet or block of wood.
You could order tires ahead of time. Pull the wheels, have the tires changed.
Bring some chain, the comealong by itself will not be long enough.
Hope she still has the key.

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