VW Bus Buying Advice

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omacdon2
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VW Bus Buying Advice

Post by omacdon2 » Fri Oct 05, 2018 5:31 am

Hey everyone,
I'm looking to buy a VW Bus to take on a road-trip cross-country. I don't have much of a mechanical background, but am sure I will definitely learn along the way..that's the adventure of it. I plan on using it before the trip to get to know it before. Have you ever done something like this or have any recommendations of what to look out for when buying one? I found this one on The Samba https://www.thesamba.com/vw/classifieds ... id=2196877 ,all original and rebuilt motor. I also found this one https://www.carsforsale.com/vehicle/details/46019689 , more expensive but sick looking
Thanks! And any recommendations as to good websites selling them would be great.

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tommu
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Re: VW Bus Buying Advice

Post by tommu » Fri Oct 05, 2018 7:48 am

I wouldn’t trust either of those to take me to the shops. When the word GEX means nothing to you - you haven’t done enough research.

If you want to jump in and drive cross country then an unknown bus is not for you. Even with mechanical ability and a credit card.

If your objective is really to drive cross country in a VW without rebuilding it first then perhaps look at a Eurovan?

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Ronin10
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Re: VW Bus Buying Advice

Post by Ronin10 » Fri Oct 05, 2018 9:01 am

omacdon2 wrote:
Fri Oct 05, 2018 5:31 am
I also found this one https://www.carsforsale.com/vehicle/details/46019689 , more expensive but sick looking
Looks like someone is looking to recover the cost of paint and suspension work. $14k is way out of line for an asking price given the mods and condition of the metal, IMO. And for a cross country trip, I don't think you're going to want anything other than the stock suspension.

As for the Westy, $9k with that back end? No way! I paid about that for mine a couple years ago and the body was in really good shape other than the automatic bad areas (nose where the spare tire gets mounted and battery tray).

Don't let your enthusiasm and high asking prices let you get suckered. Be leary of buying anything from parts of the country that use salt on their roads in the winter (especially if the paint looks new). Patience is the key to getting a good candidates to come along. Long story short, if you can afford $14k for a bus, you can do A LOT better than these options.
Oscar: 1976 Sage Green Bus, Stock Motor, Solid Lifters, Manual Transaxle

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Amskeptic
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Re: VW Bus Buying Advice

Post by Amskeptic » Fri Oct 05, 2018 8:17 pm

Ronin10 wrote:
Fri Oct 05, 2018 9:01 am
Patience is the key to getting a good candidate to come along.
Long story short, if you can afford $14k for a bus, you can do A LOT better than these options.

This!
Colin
BobD - 1978 Bus . . . . . . . . . . .111,130 miles
Chloe - 1970 bus . . . . . . . . . . . 206,787 miles
Naranja - 1977 Westfalia . . . . . 94,615 miles
Pluck - 1973 Squareback . . . . . 55,510 miles
Alexus - 1991 Lexus LS400 . . . 72,990 miles

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zabo
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Re: VW Bus Buying Advice

Post by zabo » Sat Oct 06, 2018 6:12 am

I agree there are a lot better busses for 14k. But hey if you find one that runs well and you are up for learning about how to keep i going- go for it. I wouldn’t worry too much about it. sounds like your up for an adventure.
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78 bus

omacdon2
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Re: VW Bus Buying Advice

Post by omacdon2 » Mon Oct 08, 2018 10:53 am

What about this one I found in Cali https://www.carsforsale.com/vehicle/details/47733342
It's still for sale, the guy told me and in "perfect working condition."
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71whitewesty
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Re: VW Bus Buying Advice

Post by 71whitewesty » Mon Oct 08, 2018 3:09 pm

Ad says it’s sold. Otherwise looked like a great deal. But still not sure I’d drive it across country without a full check up. Those other two you posted are not good deals.
Where are you located? Best to get someone with experience involved and keep asking questions. Lots of great info on here and helpful folks.
Good luck in your search.

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Amskeptic
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Re: VW Bus Buying Advice

Post by Amskeptic » Mon Oct 08, 2018 8:38 pm

71whitewesty wrote:
Mon Oct 08, 2018 3:09 pm
Ad says it’s sold. Otherwise looked like a great deal. But still not sure I’d drive it across country without a full check up. Those other two you posted are not good deals.
Where are you located? Best to get someone with experience involved and keep asking questions. Lots of great info on here and helpful folks.
Good luck in your search.

This ^ too!
Colin
BobD - 1978 Bus . . . . . . . . . . .111,130 miles
Chloe - 1970 bus . . . . . . . . . . . 206,787 miles
Naranja - 1977 Westfalia . . . . . 94,615 miles
Pluck - 1973 Squareback . . . . . 55,510 miles
Alexus - 1991 Lexus LS400 . . . 72,990 miles

omacdon2
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Re: VW Bus Buying Advice

Post by omacdon2 » Sat Nov 10, 2018 11:02 am

Thanks for the replies guys. I'm continuing to search for the best one I can find. Also, I don't have a garage at home and feel it would be needed for the winters, to work on the bus, and to prevent theft. I also don't know anyone with a garage around here. These are the options I could think of...
-I have a driveway that goes on an incline to the back of my house so I could put a garage/shed there. The only problem with that may be getting the bus up the hill. Also, I may need a permit from the city to put up a garage/shed.
-Putting a shed/garage up on some land I have above my house on a hill. The only problem with that is the neighbor situation isn't so pleasant up there.
-Invest in a second house with a garage. The only problem with that is the cost, in addition to the cost of the bus.
-Put it in a vehicle storage facility for $225 a month. Again, the cost is the only problem and it might be more worth it to have a garage of my own.

Has anyone else experienced this and what did you do?

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Amskeptic
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Re: VW Bus Buying Advice

Post by Amskeptic » Tue Nov 13, 2018 9:37 pm

omacdon2 wrote:
Sat Nov 10, 2018 11:02 am
Thanks for the replies guys. I'm continuing to search for the best one I can find. Also, I don't have a garage at home and feel it would be needed for the winters, to work on the bus, and to prevent theft. I also don't know anyone with a garage around here. These are the options I could think of...
-I have a driveway that goes on an incline to the back of my house so I could put a garage/shed there. The only problem with that may be getting the bus up the hill. Also, I may need a permit from the city to put up a garage/shed.
-Putting a shed/garage up on some land I have above my house on a hill. The only problem with that is the neighbor situation isn't so pleasant up there.
-Invest in a second house with a garage. The only problem with that is the cost, in addition to the cost of the bus.
-Put it in a vehicle storage facility for $225 a month. Again, the cost is the only problem and it might be more worth it to have a garage of my own.

Has anyone else experienced this and what did you do?

a) a VW bus will scamper up all kinds of hills. That engine in the rear provides excellent traction, and the gearing in 1st is quite capable.

b) what do you mean "the neighbor situation isn't so pleasant up there"?

c) a VW bus will fit in a 10x20 unit. I have two buses in two units @ $79.00/m

d) it is very best to have all preparations nailed down well before you bring a bus home. For example, I am virtually homeless with seven cars stored in three states. Lunacy.
Colin


Image
BobD - 1978 Bus . . . . . . . . . . .111,130 miles
Chloe - 1970 bus . . . . . . . . . . . 206,787 miles
Naranja - 1977 Westfalia . . . . . 94,615 miles
Pluck - 1973 Squareback . . . . . 55,510 miles
Alexus - 1991 Lexus LS400 . . . 72,990 miles

omacdon2
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Re: VW Bus Buying Advice

Post by omacdon2 » Wed Nov 14, 2018 10:53 pm

Great picture! Wow where did you find a storage facility for $79 per month? The cheapest I've seen is well over $100!! And do you keep them in there year-round or only in the winter? What I meant by the neighbor situation not being so pleasant was that I've had problems in the past of the neighbor on the hill above my house cutting down trees on my land up there and throwing their trash there. I would be weary of building some kind of garage up there on my land because who knows what might happen to it. But thanks for your tips about going uphill, it makes sense that the engine being in back would give it more traction. :)

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Re: VW Bus Buying Advice

Post by TrollFromDownBelow » Fri Nov 16, 2018 3:04 pm

Question....are you passionate about taking a road trip, or passionate about owning a bus? Or do both really tickle your fancy? If it's the road trip, you might be best off finding a later model van that needs less maintenance than a 40-50 YO car.... You can always sell it, and then get a VW after the road trip. If you really want to take a cross country road trip IN a VW bus, then would suggest buying it a year ahead of time of your adventure to give you some time to learn it's quirks, how to do maintenance, etc. Easier to learn/do that kind of stuff if you have a home base with tools.
1976 VW Bus aka tripod
FI ...8 completely solid lifters.... now it's both kinda noisy and leaky, but she sure runs good!
hambone wrote: There are those out there with no other aim but to bunch panties. It's like arguing with a pretzel.
::troll2::

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Amskeptic
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Re: VW Bus Buying Advice

Post by Amskeptic » Sat Nov 17, 2018 10:00 am

TrollFromDownBelow wrote:
Fri Nov 16, 2018 3:04 pm
Question....are you passionate about taking a road trip, or passionate about owning a bus? Or do both really tickle your fancy? If it's the road trip, you might be best off finding a later model van that needs less maintenance than a 40-50 YO car.... You can always sell it, and then get a VW after the road trip. If you really want to take a cross country road trip IN a VW bus, then would suggest buying it a year ahead of time of your adventure to give you some time to learn it's quirks, how to do maintenance, etc. Easier to learn/do that kind of stuff if you have a home base with tools.

Did I read anywhere in the above recommendations to hire me me MEEEEE to help him learn it's quirks, help him learn how to do maintenance, help him learn how to get up to speed, help him learn how to be alert to the simple little things that can be addressed before big expensive disasters strike? Did I? Did I?
I feel, I feel, I feel so . . . irrelevant.
Colin
BobD - 1978 Bus . . . . . . . . . . .111,130 miles
Chloe - 1970 bus . . . . . . . . . . . 206,787 miles
Naranja - 1977 Westfalia . . . . . 94,615 miles
Pluck - 1973 Squareback . . . . . 55,510 miles
Alexus - 1991 Lexus LS400 . . . 72,990 miles

TrollFromDownBelow
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Re: VW Bus Buying Advice

Post by TrollFromDownBelow » Sat Nov 17, 2018 9:34 pm

Amskeptic wrote:
Sat Nov 17, 2018 10:00 am

Did I read anywhere in the above recommendations to hire me me MEEEEE to help him learn it's quirks, help him learn how to do maintenance, help him learn how to get up to speed, help him learn how to be alert to the simple little things that can be addressed before big expensive disasters strike? Did I? Did I?
I feel, I feel, I feel so . . . irrelevant.
Colin
uuuuhhh duh! That kinda goes without saying on this forum! Or maybe it should. Yes, Colin is the Shizzle when it comes to VW Buses .... hands down. He's is the perfect blend of "Okay, this is the way it SHOULD be done, but, we've got duct tape, some peanut butter, Gum Out, Coffee, and some Diet Coke. We're gonna make this work, ok? :cherry:
1976 VW Bus aka tripod
FI ...8 completely solid lifters.... now it's both kinda noisy and leaky, but she sure runs good!
hambone wrote: There are those out there with no other aim but to bunch panties. It's like arguing with a pretzel.
::troll2::

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Amskeptic
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Re: VW Bus Buying Advice

Post by Amskeptic » Sun Nov 18, 2018 8:09 am

TrollFromDownBelow wrote:
Sat Nov 17, 2018 9:34 pm
Amskeptic wrote:
Sat Nov 17, 2018 10:00 am

Did I read anywhere in the above recommendations to hire me me MEEEEE to help him learn it's quirks, help him learn how to do maintenance, help him learn how to get up to speed, help him learn how to be alert to the simple little things that can be addressed before big expensive disasters strike? Did I? Did I?
I feel, I feel, I feel so . . . irrelevant.
Colin
uuuuhhh duh! That kinda goes without saying on this forum! Or maybe it should. Yes, Colin is the Shizzle when it comes to VW Buses .... hands down. He's is the perfect blend of "Okay, this is the way it SHOULD be done, but, we've got duct tape, some peanut butter, Gum Out, Coffee, and some Diet Coke. We're gonna make this work, ok? :cherry:

Let it be known that I am swimming here on the phone with some people around the country who have themselves in various pickles. We must re-dedicate to "correct procedures" . . .
Colin
BobD - 1978 Bus . . . . . . . . . . .111,130 miles
Chloe - 1970 bus . . . . . . . . . . . 206,787 miles
Naranja - 1977 Westfalia . . . . . 94,615 miles
Pluck - 1973 Squareback . . . . . 55,510 miles
Alexus - 1991 Lexus LS400 . . . 72,990 miles

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