Friday, 3 July 2015
This is a very tough post to write. We are selling Dave the camper. This is the same one I drove around the UK in my BBC TV show One Man and His Campervan in the summer of 2010.
Let me explain.
Dave came into our lives just before we shot the TV series. At the time I owned a Type 25 called Pootle but the BBC said that he wasn’t ‘cool’ enough for the show. They wanted me to drive a rental van. I said “absolutely no”. We had a standoff. Eventually I agreed to sell Pootle, buy a Bay and then rent the Bay to the BBC for the duration of the shoot. So we sold Pootle (we all cried) and bought Dave (who wasn’t called Dave at the time).
And then I set off on that great adventure.
Since then Dave has had a lot of love lavished on him and has been on a few trips with us. We went to France and Spain, Ireland and the Outer Hebrides and we loved every single minute of it. So has Dave. He has let us down only twice. Once when his clutch cable snapped during filming and once when the engine blew up on the way back from Camper Jam. We've had a few minor mishaps as well, as you do, but on the whole he's been solid and reliable. A real friend. And perhaps a little piece of camper van history too.
Now, however, we are heading off on a new adventure. I have a new book to write and some new stories to tell. I shall be cooking and camping and writing all about what makes a very fine camper van. To do this I need some new wheels to turn into a camper van. I am not sure what we’re getting yet as I need to do some more planning. But we’ve only got one garage and the cash we’ve invested in Dave, so it’s time to look for a new home for a lovely, red and white, quite famous little camper van.
Let me tell you about him.
• Dave also featured in my second book, The Camper Van Coast. In fact, he is on the front and back covers. He’s also been in Coast Magazine, Devon Life, Cornwall Life, Camping Magazine, Camper Van Magazine, MMM Magazine and lots and lots of others. Did I tell you he was on telly too?
• Dave is a 1979 Devon Moonraker full length pop top conversion.
• Dave sleeps 4 in two double beds. The downstairs bed is full width.
• Dave is not the original colour, which was white over cream. He is now white over sealing wax red, an official VW colour, but not of his year.
• Dave has a 2.0 litre engine, a Vege recon from 2012, at 87000 miles.
• Dave has 147000 on the clock in total.
• Dave has a full width bed (Bluebird Customs), with 2 inertia reel seat belts and 1 lap belt. Vinyl covers from VW heritage.
• Dave has had the bulkhead behind the passenger seat removed (like the Berlin Westfalia conversion) and a swivel seat base fitted in the passenger seat. This makes a massive difference and gives the interior about 2 ft of extra space. It works really well. It’s the best seat in the house.
• Dave has a Propex heater, with travelling exhaust ports so it can be used while driving.
• Dave’s interior was fitted by Individual Campers of Westward Ho! to my spec in 2013. It was made from birch faced ply to accommodate the original 2 ring cooker and the original fridge (which works, obvs). It has a shallow drainer for washing up, and a buddy box to accommodate a porta potti.
• Dave had a bottom half respray in 2014, during which he had all new arches, a new passenger door, new door bottoms and freshly sandblasted and painted bumpers and wheels. He has been garaged ever since.
• In June 2011 Dave had new roof hinges and new roof sections around the hinges.
• In June 2015 Dave had the roof and interior carpet lining replaced, a new leisure battery, new rear mud flaps, a new accelerator pedal, a service, a brand new MOT and a new exhaust.
If you want to see Dave he will be at South West Classic VWs in South Molton in a few weeks. Call Ian on 01769 573 020.
If you want to see him before, leave me a message below. We are in Bude.
How much? Offers invited.
Good, loving homes only please!