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Author Topic: New to RVs and thinking of buying from US while already in france  (Read 3102 times)

capnbooboo

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Hi

This may sound like an odd thread to some, I have been staying in france with my French girlfriend and our children for a year now, I can cause I have kids here, we recently fell in the love with the idea of living in a RV, sadly the ones in france are not that big and way over priced., So we looked in Germany and found a few American models like fleetwood, et etc but they are all very old, too heavy which require truckers license ( anything over 3.5 tons) and most have flat roofs with  potential leek issues., however some friends back in NJ suggested to look on craigslist or eBay and to ask for advise on this forum.

So we decided maybe we share with you what we think is ideal for us and you can all tell us if it's realistic.,
We want an rv under 3.5 tons but that has enough beds to sleep 2 adults and 4 children, ideally bunk beds.
We found so me in france but they where way over priced, we are talking RVs from the 90s going for 25k that you can buy for 2.500 dollars on eBay back hone., in fact you can't buy a RV on eBay.fr, but you can anywhere else.

So we found a few fleetwood tiagos from the late 90s on eBay, one for example came with 4 bunk beds for kids, located in Ohio, roundish roof, some stains on walls but all in all the condition looked great, 4 k gen and several batteries, decent frig, the couple also showed it to us via skype, and after we decided to buy it we  ran into horrible issues with shipping it, prices ranged between $3000 and $8000 dollars including picking it up and dropping it off at a RORO port., even then, the RORO ports in Europe are very far from the south west of france, they are near the UK, Belgium and north of france .

Then we had this one dealer tell us that he had a 1999 bounder he wanted to get rid of for 4grand and said it will cost 3 grand to ship it from California, but when asking people on a French forum how it worked we where told we needed a class c drivers permit to drive anything over 7 Tons and a RV permit to drive a RV between 3.5 tons up to 7 tons, also there are complications like certifying the vehicle if my wife picks it up cause she is french, like. if we don't register and insure it in the USA before it comes it could take months.

I don't have a drivers license, I am the us citizen buying it, my girlfriend drives so I think I have to register the title in the USA, insure it with her as an additional driver,

Please advise on all this, I assume class A is the way to go since we have 4 toddlers and want to travel Europe while schooling them around france and uk
« Last Edit: June 22, 2014, 07:00:06 AM by capnbooboo »

SeilerBird

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Re: New to RVs and thinking of buying from US while already in france
« Reply #1 on: June 22, 2014, 07:17:00 AM »
We want an rv under 3.5 tons but that has enough beds to sleep 2 adults and 4 children, ideally bunk beds.
That is not going to happen a 7000 pound RV will never have enough beds or room to sleep 6 people.
Quote
We found so me in france but they where way over priced, we are talking RVs from the 90s going for 25k that you can buy for 2.500 dollars on eBay back hone.,
An RV that is that cheap will require at least double that amount just to make it driveable and liveable.
Quote
So we found a few fleetwood tiagos from the late 90s on eBay, one for example came with 4 bunk beds for kids, located in Ohio, roundish roof, some stains on walls but all in all the condition looked great, 4 k gen and several batteries, decent frig, the couple also showed it to us via skype, and after we decided to buy it we  ran into horrible issues with shipping it, prices ranged between $3000 and $8000 dollars including picking it up and dropping it off at a RORO port., even then, the RORO ports in Europe are very far from the south west of france, they are near the UK, Belgium and north of france .
Buying an RV sight unseen is about as dumb as it gets. You really need to inspect and drive any RV before buying one. And that usually means a few months of intensive shopping and driving a lot of lemons before finding the RV of your dreams.
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capnbooboo

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Re: New to RVs and thinking of buying from US while already in france
« Reply #2 on: June 22, 2014, 11:33:49 AM »
We obviously agree with you on all points but you miss understood some,

we have been trying RVs in france, most are 24 feet, tiny, over head bunk, some had dinnet in the back as well or 2/3 bunk beds, some even 4 bunk beds but 24 feet is tiny, and they sell those used starting at $8000 used on sites like "leboncoin", inspections certified by mechanics and all, but no heaters, so me had solar panels., these RVs are 3.5 tons and can sleep up to 7 people, dinnet turns into a double end, over head bunker is a queen size bed and then you have 3/4 bunk beds., this is how they are in france.

Everyone in france insists I buy a rv from the US through a dealer placing money in a escrow account so he or she can try it on site, have a mechanical inspections, when u mean dealer i don't mean contacting a dealership, I literally mean hiring someone who is a dealer who may agree to go to see a rv we found on craigslist.,  many Europeans tell me the RVs made in the USA drink up gas like fish though and is the only sad drawback, Becuase they are bigger and heavier., but there are small ones too.

Are you saying there are no RVs that weight 3.5 tons?

Here is a example of a 24ft rv that sleeps 5, 4500 /$6500 cheapest ive seen yet
http://www.leboncoin.fr/caravaning/675516666.htm?ca=16_s

Here is a US version at 3800/$4000, Winnie Minnie (has gen issues)
http://www.ebay.com/itm/1987-Class-C-Minnie-Winnie-4000-/121369455570?forcerrptr=true&hash=item1c422eebd2&item=121369455570&pt=RVs_Campers

And another
http://www.ebay.com/itm/32-photos-Nicely-maintained-WITH-JACKS-85-Tioga-Arrow-F26-Ford-460-class-C-LOOK-/231262463567?forcerrptr=true&hash=item35d851264f&item=231262463567&pt=RVs_Campers
« Last Edit: June 22, 2014, 11:49:39 AM by capnbooboo »

Gary RV_Wizard

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Re: New to RVs and thinking of buying from US while already in france
« Reply #3 on: June 22, 2014, 12:28:41 PM »
Even assuming those are metric tons (1000 kg), that is 7700 US pounds, so no, you won't find many in that range at all. The light duty vans and pick-ups that are the base for even small RVs tend to weigh nearly that much before the body & furnishings installed.

Here's one on RV Trader (rvt.com) that suits your budget, but notice that the dry weight (no water or gear onboard) is 10,500 lbs.
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capnbooboo

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Re: New to RVs and thinking of buying from US while already in france
« Reply #4 on: June 23, 2014, 11:46:46 AM »
Even assuming those are metric tons (1000 kg), that is 7700 US pounds, so no, you won't find many in that range at all. The light duty vans and pick-ups that are the base for even small RVs tend to weigh nearly that much before the body & furnishings installed.

Here's one on RV Trader (rvt.com) that suits your budget, but notice that the dry weight (no water or gear onboard) is 10,500 lbs.
  10,500lbs is roughly 5 tons, with a RV license (France only) you can drive up to 7 Tons., your required to dump your things on the side of the road if your caught driving a vehicle more then 7,5 tons (not including people) and no more then 10 people.

We understand what your all saying, we dont have the experience you all do here on this forum, you can guess that we are OVER anxious beginners,

Is there a specific make that comes with bunkers, that one Tiago we found on ebay had 4 bunk beds, was perfect for the children, i cant see to find many out there, they all seem to be for retired couples with extra beds for a couple of guests., what do you recommend for a couple with 4 children, oldest just turned 8., we want to live out of it for at least 8 months to a year.

Tom

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Re: New to RVs and thinking of buying from US while already in france
« Reply #5 on: June 23, 2014, 12:26:04 PM »
Can't recall the model, but an acquaintance had a "short" Winnebago class A with bunks.
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SeilerBird

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Re: New to RVs and thinking of buying from US while already in france
« Reply #6 on: June 23, 2014, 01:39:08 PM »
i cant see to find many out there, they all seem to be for retired couples with extra beds for a couple of guests., what do you recommend for a couple with 4 children, oldest just turned 8., we want to live out of it for at least 8 months to a year.
A small RV is not going to house 6 people full time. It just is not possible. You will need to have clothes and belongings for 6 people along with water, groceries and tools. That is just too much stuff in too small of a space. A small RV has a very limited CCC (cargo carrying capacity) and you will go over that without any problems. An overloaded RV is not very safe.
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capnbooboo

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Re: New to RVs and thinking of buying from US while already in france
« Reply #7 on: June 23, 2014, 06:46:08 PM »
A small RV is not going to house 6 people full time. It just is not possible. You will need to have clothes and belongings for 6 people along with water, groceries and tools. That is just too much stuff in too small of a space. A small RV has a very limited CCC (cargo carrying capacity) and you will go over that without any problems. An overloaded RV is not very safe.
yeah we are also a musical couple, we have a 12 string, a nice martin, a les paul studio and marshall combo, a few sweet fender strats ;(  and a DAW with 4 ipads and a few iphones,

ok so what do you guys recommend, a class A, bunks, 7500watt GEN, double door Frig with ice (does it exists) since the RVS have frig's that run both electric and propane?

what would you do ?

thanks

 

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