Monday, June 7, 2021

So tempted

Bob Wells posted a Cheap RV Living video about buying used vehicles, presented by his assistant KC. Among other things, she mentioned Facebook Marketplace, which I had been ignoring because of various biases and some lack of experience. So, out of curiosity, I went to Marketplace to see what vans people were selling.

The Rolling Steel Tent has been pretty damn good to me, but it is getting on in years, with 312,377 miles at the moment. Should I remain loyal to the bitter end or should I be thinking about retiring it and bringing in some younger blood?

I’m partial to Express/Savana vans, so I searched them first. The choices were in three categories: ones only slightly younger the Rolling Steel Tent (250-280K miles), ones with fewer than 100,000 miles in the $25,000 range (ouch), and parts vehicles.

I checked the Fords. There were only three E-series at the moment and they were in sad sad shape. And the Transits were too expensive.

I have no interest in the Mercedes/Dodge/Freightliner versions of Sprinters or the Nissan NV series, and the Ram ProMaster, being front wheel drive, won’t serve my purposes. Or my wallet.

Oh, but what about the Chevy Astro/GMC Safari? Smaller, but maybe not too small. They’re getting on in years too, though. I checked anyway. And now I feel guilty because there are a couple of them at the moment that look pretty sweet, and I’m daydreaming about them. Sorry, RST.

One is a 1996 all-wheel drive Astro with 210,000 miles. The mileage is high, but the price is low: $5,000. And, dude, all-wheel drive (which I know isn’t the same as 4-wheel drive, but the transfer case can be swapped with one from an S-10 pickup.)

The other is an extended 1993 Astro with only 91,000 miles for $5,500. Aw man. I can almost taste it. However, it has a blue interior. I don't like blue interiors.

I would need to downsize further to fit into an Astro, but I suspect there’s a good amount of stuff I’m carrying in the Rolling Steel Tent simply because I can.

Part of me says to forget about it for now, if only because 210k miles and blue interior. The other part says good Astros will only get harder to find. Oh well, something to lose sleep over for a night or two.

1 comment:

  1. 300k+ miles is a good run. You could get the wear parts replaced on your schedule or wait for the van to tell you when it needs to be done... but I suspect you know that.
    In my world 250k is the ballpark number I use for the life expectancy of a vehicle... without spending the big bucks to rebuild/replace the engine, transmission, running gear and suspension.
    Then there is the school of thought that says thinking "I really want it!" is reason enough! Life is short & you ought to indulge yourself when you can.

    Which ever way you go...good luck!