Our 3rd RV

 •  Updated 06/19/17

Empty nesters. After nearly 7 years on the road that’s what we were looking at. How to change things up? Get tiny.

Our second RV - a 2014 Wildcat Fifth Wheel - served us well. It met all of the goals we had for our “next rig” when we bought it. Then our son moved out. Then our daughter turned 18. Then the truck had issues.

Goals

We wanted to be nimble. We wanted to be able to take any old road we came across. We wanted to stop at roadside stands. We wanted to camp in more rustic and remote campgrounds. We wanted to be much smaller. We wanted to be in one thing.

Class B Time

Class B vans - or camper vans as they are also called - looked attractive to us. They have most of the advantages of traditional RVs without most of the disadvantages:

  • No rubber roof
  • No sticks and staples walls
  • No plywood floor
  • No significant damage from having a flat tire

New Class B’s often go for well over $100K. We couldn’t afford that.

I also thought building something would be fun. But knowing my pace on projects, it would be at least a year-long process.

Cheap Buy-In

But would we be happy living this small? Better to buy in cheaply and find out.

With a $10K budget we set out to find a workable Class B Camper Van. After months of searching coast to coast we wound up with this 1995 Pleasure Way SRL. We’ve named it Sally. You can read the story of retrieving her from Florida to Texas.

These photos capture the “as-purchased” condition of the rig - all we’ve done is a quick power wash before driving it home. It needs some work to be suitable for fulltime living - I’ll post our fixes and upgrades to the new Vanlife category on the blog.

 

Our 3rd RV : Front end.

Front end.

Our 3rd RV : Driver's 3/4 view.

Driver's 3/4 view.

Our 3rd RV : Driver's side.

Driver's side.

Our 3rd RV : Rear. Paint issues - and just a bit of rust - visible here.

Rear. Paint issues - and just a bit of rust - visible here.

Our 3rd RV : Passenger side.

Passenger side.

Our 3rd RV : Going in. Some sun fading visible in the upper left woodgrain.

Going in. Some sun fading visible in the upper left woodgrain.

Our 3rd RV : Entrance cabinet - works as a coffee table when front seats are turned around.

Entrance cabinet - works as a coffee table when front seats are turned around.

Our 3rd RV : Both seats turn. They are in great shape but not that comfortable for us.

Both seats turn. They are in great shape but not that comfortable for us.

Our 3rd RV : Kitchen. The Pleasure Way's do a great job with cabinetry. We count 21 places with drawers or doors (not counting bathroom, fridge, and microwave).

Kitchen. The Pleasure Way's do a great job with cabinetry. We count 21 places with drawers or doors (not counting bathroom, fridge, and microwave).

Our 3rd RV : Looking down the driver's side of the rig. Fridge below. Microwave above and more storage.

Looking down the driver's side of the rig. Fridge below. Microwave above and more storage.

Our 3rd RV : Passenger side of the rig.

Passenger side of the rig.

Our 3rd RV : Wet bath. Neither of the two previous owners showered here.

Wet bath. Neither of the two previous owners showered here.

Our 3rd RV : Main wardrobe with space for hangables, shelf above and two shoe shelves below.

Main wardrobe with space for hangables, shelf above and two shoe shelves below.

Our 3rd RV : Rear living area setup as L shaped couch. It all folds down to a double sized bed. The fabric is holding up well but the foam in the cushions needs to be replaced.

Rear living area setup as L shaped couch. It all folds down to a double sized bed. The fabric is holding up well but the foam in the cushions needs to be replaced.

Our 3rd RV : View looking forward from couch. Cabinet on the left was designed for TV, etc.

View looking forward from couch. Cabinet on the left was designed for TV, etc.

Our 3rd RV : Behind the wheel.

Behind the wheel.

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2 Comments Our 3rd RV

  1. Picture of ShirlShirl May 09, 2017

    A class B is next on my list.  I enjoy reading what you have done and look forward to taking the dog and working my way around the US.  I am not very mechanical when it comes to cars/trucks…had an older Chevy pop top and things always went wrong…so looking for something a bit newer.  All of your input helps.  Thanks.

  2. Picture of Michael BoyinkMichael Boyink May 09, 2017

    Hi Shirl -

    Newer might be better. Or not. And when newer needs fixin’ it’s always more expensive. ;)

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