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4 Tips for Purchasing a Vintage Camper for Vehicle Restoration

There are people who love going out and purchasing brand-new, pristine campers, and then there are people who enjoy the process of taking something and making it meet their specific desires. For the latter, purchasing a vintage camper like a Westfalia for vehicle restoration might be a dream project. But before you hand over cash on what you believe to be an amazing Craigslist or eBay find, check out the following key things to consider to ensure your investment brings you more fun than frustration:

4 Things to Consider When Purchasing a Vintage Camper for Vehicle Restoration

  • Solid Flooring. Small flooring problems can be more or less easily resolved, but if there are big soft spots then it may be better to walk away. Soft flooring spots are generally indicative of either extensive water damage or compromised framing. To repair either of these issues can be a major undertaking. With a used vintage vehicle restoration with unknown history, you will need to remove all seating, counters, and other furnishings to pull up the flooring and inspect just how widespread the damage is.
  • Working Electrical Systems. Installing a new electrical system in a vehicle restoration project isn’t necessarily a difficult or expensive task, but it can be time-consuming, especially if you are new to this specialty. So unless you have a season to spend preparing your vintage camper or are looking to outsource such work to a knowledgeable auto body shop like Premier Coach Works, we advise passing.
  • Quality Tires in Good Condition. Did you know that underinflated and bad condition tires are among the top causes of RV accidents? Tires are a critical component of your vintage camper and so are one of the very first things you should look at. While bad tires shouldn’t be a deal breaker for any vintage buy, you should make tire replacement at the top of your list of things to do upon bringing the vehicle home, and factor this consideration into your purchasing price. Note that quality RV tires can be expensive but that expense is well worth the peace of mind.
  • Original Windows and Hardware. If you are looking to do a recreational vehicle restoration on an older camper model, then it’s important to remember that the older the model, the harder it will be to find authentic replacement parts. Replacement windows and their hardware can be one of the hardest things to get authentic replacements for and can leave you spending weeks scouring eBay listings and local scrapyards. If you fall in love with a vintage camper that lacks these components in good condition, you may be able to find certain replacement parts fabricated or current ones remachined to standard by an auto body shop. Remember, though: it’s best to consult with companies prior to buying.

Contact Premier Coach Works for More Tips on Vehicle Restoration Projects

For more tips on what to look out for when shopping for vintage campers or for help in specific vehicle restoration tasks or wholesale restorations, contact our experienced team at Premier Coach Works.