Am I crazy or genius?? :o help...

Discussion in 'Camper Pre-Purchase Questions' started by Lixa, Apr 15, 2017.

  1. Lixa

    Lixa New Member

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    Ok. So, maybe I'm having a little bit of spring mania, but I looked at what I believe to be a 1974 Jayco Swift with the slide out cooktop.

    It is big! It is dirty! It has some mouse holes in the canvas! No propane tank!
    One of the tables is sitting out in the yard!

    From my quick inspection it didn't have any rot.

    I could get it for next to nothing...

    Here's the model it looks like:
    http://www.popupcamperhistory.com/jayco1973brochure.html

    Am I insane? Could I get a rear light assembly?
    What should I do to evaluate it if I go back there to take another look? I wouldn't be planning on driving around with it a lot, more like parking it in a pole barn on the location where it would be used. But I'd need to fix it a little first and then haul it 150 miles to its destination.......

    HELP! I'M gripped by a feverish desire for this camper! My family thinks I'm a little cookoo! Talk some sense into me! (Or give me some reasonable advice )
     
  2. Lixa

    Lixa New Member

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    What about the propane? Should I take a tank with me and see if stuff works?
    Is it a lost cause?
     
  3. Lixa

    Lixa New Member

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    How would I patch the small holes that are in the white plasticy canvas parts?

    I'm confident I can deal with some things, but wondering about others ...
     
  4. frankvanw1

    frankvanw1 London, Ontario, Canada

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    Lixa, that is a big trailer, 12' box (from page 3).
    The vinyl can possibly be patched depending on condition.
    Purchasing this camper would be dependent on the condition it is in and how much work you want to put into it. If you cannot access this yourself; someone with knowledge in tent trailers like your dealers service manager would be a good person to take along or bring it to them to look it over.
    Good luck with this purchase and happy camping.
     
  5. Orchid

    Orchid Sharp Shootin' Grandma

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    The brochure shows a super cool camper! I would be very excited to have something like that.

    It's probably safe to say (if it's been sitting with no recent maintenance) that the propane lines will have to be replaced, and maybe the wiring if it has been chewed by mice. Neither are that difficult in pups.

    If the wiring doesn't work, just buy one of those temporary sets to get it home where you can work on it.

    No propane tank is nothing. I would not even consider that as a factor. If you are sure there is no rot in the camper or roof, it would seem like a go to me. It's about $1k or maybe a bit under for new canvas, which I would consider just due to age. I would also be prepared to replace all the cushions as they likely contain all sorts of nasty allergens.
     
  6. terry1419

    terry1419 Active Member

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    I would not even consider towing it home that far if the tires are more than 7-8 years old and that would be on a wing and a prayer. There is a 4 digit date code on the tires that gives you the date of manufacture. First set of numbers is the week of the year and the second set is the year. I would jack it up to see if the wheels turn freely without grinding or other strange noise. Even better would be to pull the wheels and hubs and visually check the bearings and regrease them. If it has brakes, surge brakes have a tendency to build corrosion in the master and wheel cylinders and become inoperable. If they are electric, you would need a brake controller in your TV.
    If you are new to pup ups, my advice is to forget it and buy something with much less potential for problems. If you have your heart set on this one, find out how much it would cost to rent a trailer or flatbed and bring it home that way.
    Give my regards to your family and good luck if you persist in this adventure.
     
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  7. Lixa

    Lixa New Member

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    Thank you guys!
    Yes, it is BIG. I would haul it with a Ford F150 that has the towing package.
    I believe it was used last summer, but sat in the yard during fall and winter.

    I love how big it is inside. Love love love it. I can get a little overzealous at times though.

    I love the slide out cooktop for when it's hot out and I don't want to heat up the camper...

    I need to look into what kind of glue I would use for patching the canvas.

    If it need new gas lines... I'm out. I do not have a successful history of sweating copper pipe. My little sister did that stuff, but she died last year. She watches my projects from the flip side, but she can't physically help me anymore!
     
  8. Lixa

    Lixa New Member

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    THIS is the kind of sensible talk I needed! ;)
    Good idea to Jack it up and see if the wheels roll without noise. The info on the tires is great! Thank you! :)
    I was wondering about the brakes, it is supposed to have hydraulic brakes, but I have serious doubts that those would be working , however my dad's trailer loaded up, weighs about what this thing does, and his trailer has no brakes.

    ...
     
  9. jmkay1

    jmkay1 2004 Fleetwood/Coleman Utah

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    My worry is how long has that camper sat unmaintained, don't always take the sellers word for it. Some just want the sale, so try and give you a story you want to hear. Did you watch them lift the roof or was it already set up when you went to visit? I would want to watch them lift it to verify that the lift system works without any issues. Also while lifting you could look under the sideboards of the camper to verify the wood is solid and no serious discoloration. Feel and press on the roof to verify no soft spots. Look in all the cabinets, and tip toe on the floor to verify no soft spots. If they never used the propane be sure you check the lines over very carefully before you attempt to hook the propane up. Also a thing to note, if that camper still has the '74 propane hook up todays tanks may not work on it without an adapter, but I could be wrong. I would guarantee you would first want to haul the camper home on a flatbed before taking it out on the open road. Tire, brakes, wheel barring's, and electrical connection may need to be in serious need of replacement. I wouldn't want to chance it on the open road. I would not be too worried about the canvas. Canvas replacement is about $1000 although they may need your old canvas to use as a guide. You can find canvas patches on amazon if you only have a few holes. The patches I bought came with its own glue and surprisingly worked great. I think it was called tear aid or something like that.
     
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  10. Lixa

    Lixa New Member

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    As you can see, I'm still sort of trying to talk myself out of it. I could get it for $100 or less,

    And it might be AWESOME
    or I might regret it.
    Now if I could convince my parents to let me park it in their yard while I worked on it...
    LOL
     
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  11. terry1419

    terry1419 Active Member

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    The propane lines that MAY need to be replaced are most likely rubber lines with brass threaded fittings which could be changed easily. You can find a canvas patch kit on Ebay which comes with the canvas and a small bottle of Tear Aid glue which, as has been said, is supposed to work well. For small pin holes, just a dab of Tear Aid, Shoe Goo, or other fabric cement would probably work. If it has been used within a year and not sitting for extended period, it might be in better shape than was indicated. There is a section in another part of this forum for pre-purchase checks which you can access to alert you to many items to check on a used Pup. The price is certainly attractive but still not cheap enough if this "project" is going to cost you thousands. One good thing, on this Forum all the advice from friendly and knowledgeable people and benefit of their experience is free!
     
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  12. terry1419

    terry1419 Active Member

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    In your original post, you said you did a "quick inspection" and didn't find any rot. That's a good start but not thorough enough. You really need to check for water damage EVERYWHERE. Look underneath at the flooring including the corners, inside interior cabinets, under the valance curtains at the roof side board and check interior canvas for signs of mold.
    A few other things of importance: Have the PO show you everything from putting it up and taking it down to how the water system, AC and/or furnace, stove, etc. works. So yes, if there is no propane tank available and the PO can't remove one from a gas grill for testing, you may have to take one.
    And make sure the PO has title in hand, that there is no lien on it, and that the VIN matches the one on the camper. Verify everything the PO tells you and don't be afraid to ask a lot of questions.
     
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  13. theseus

    theseus Centerville, OH

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    Propane lines aren't soldered like water lines in your house. The metal lines are flaired with a nut behind the flare. If those need replacing, I can tell you it's easy. You can get the tool for making the flair and new tubing at a Lowes or Home Depot. I did it so you can too.
     
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  14. Lixa

    Lixa New Member

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    See! You guys are a wealth of knowledge and helpful advice!
     
  15. kreeves

    kreeves She and her two dogs

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    If you can tow it home and it has a good title. And if you can get it for a 100. Buy it. Trailer it home for safety and if it will be too much work, even a quick wash and a sweep out will get your money back by doing nothing. Best of luck to you
     
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  16. Alan

    Alan Active Member

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  17. Alan

    Alan Active Member

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    Photos?

    How is anybody supposed to know the condition of it and give an opinion without pics?
     
  18. 94-D2

    94-D2 Happy Campin'

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    I agree. $100 bucks? The risk is very low for the investment. Heck, there is more than $100 in parts in it. Buy it, fix it, flip it, use it. That is like a third if a trip to Costco. No brained here.
     
  19. Lixa

    Lixa New Member

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    Oh my gosh. I woke feeling like I could maybe start to forget the camper I fell in love with, but now I receive some encouragement!:D

    I'll see what happens this week in my life.
    I tried to upload a pic, but the file is too big.

    Time to focus on getting the walls put in my mom's 1987 hard side Road Ranger camper that had awful water damage. I'm almost done with what has been months of work on this thing. maybe that's why I'm looking for a new project. :)
     
  20. Lixa

    Lixa New Member

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    Later today I will be driving by again .....
     

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