Buy all your VW California Accessories at the Club Shop Visit Shop


Inferiority of conversions

A

AlistairC

Messages
3
Location
South
Vehicle
Looking to buy
Calis are great but I ended up with a conversion for two reasons.
1) The expense of repairs and necessity to stay with VW when things like the electro-hydraulics inevitably go wrong....
2) The wider array of choice with a conversion. After the sale of a Cali fell through for us we ended up settling for a LWB conversion which with two kids and a dog we have subsequently decided was the best decision we could have made.

We’ve just been to VW to look at a T6 and although it felt like a nicer build, we could never go back to a SWB.

I’d love double glazing..... but it is nothing an eberspacher can’t overcome...

Each to their own.
 
X

Xylem

Messages
7
Vehicle
T5 SE 174
How can one tell weather the van is factory or conversion ?
I have been driving several conversions which were practically clones of the factory Cali. The hydraulic roof with central command, sliding back seats, rotating front seats, folding chairs in the back door, sliding table in the side door, fridge-cooker block with furniture, lights etc, all original vw parts...
 
2into1

2into1

Née T4WFA. Now running 2017 150 DSG Ocean
Lifetime VIP Member
Messages
2,902
Location
Glossop
Vehicle
T6 Ocean 150
How can one tell weather the van is factory or conversion ?
I have been driving several conversions which were practically clones of the factory Cali. The hydraulic roof with central command, sliding back seats, rotating front seats, folding chairs in the back door, sliding table in the side door, fridge-cooker block with furniture, lights etc, all original vw parts...
Good question - I think you may need to check the log book. Section D3 should read California with hopefully SE / Ocean / Beach after it.
 
X

Xylem

Messages
7
Vehicle
T5 SE 174
No doubt that factory built is better quality camper van, but does it justify the higher price difference ? In my case that would be at around 20-30%, compared to the clone with same van spec mentioned above.
 
WelshGas

WelshGas

Retired after 42 yrs and enjoying Life.
Top Poster
Lifetime VIP Member
Messages
13,344
Location
Cowbridge
Vehicle
T5 SE 180 4Motion
No doubt that factory built is better quality camper van, but does it justify the higher price difference ? In my case that would be at around 20-30%, compared to the clone with same van spec mentioned above.
I doubt if that clone had been built with New parts, probably 2nd hand from an assortment of crashed vehicles. Hence the price difference.
 
X

Xylem

Messages
7
Vehicle
T5 SE 174
But factory one would be second hand as well...
 
WelshGas

WelshGas

Retired after 42 yrs and enjoying Life.
Top Poster
Lifetime VIP Member
Messages
13,344
Location
Cowbridge
Vehicle
T5 SE 180 4Motion
But factory one would be second hand as well...
True a 2nd hand Factory built California is second hand but I doubt if many of the parts had been involved in a crash unlike the vehicle above. That company purchases and sources parts from Californias that are written off as uneconomical repairs by the Insurance companies.
 
X

Xylem

Messages
7
Vehicle
T5 SE 174
Makes sense. And with having a base van with minor bumps and lumps previously repaired, that could make even a bigger price difference.
 
2into1

2into1

Née T4WFA. Now running 2017 150 DSG Ocean
Lifetime VIP Member
Messages
2,902
Location
Glossop
Vehicle
T6 Ocean 150
No doubt that factory built is better quality camper van, but does it justify the higher price difference ? In my case that would be at around 20-30%, compared to the clone with same van spec mentioned above.
You should read back and check the differences in base vehicles used in the conversations and clones. A Caravelle base would be very different to a T28 Transporter base, but would look the same at first converted glance.
 
larrylamb

larrylamb

Califandango
Top Poster
VIP Member
Messages
2,871
Location
Fylde Coast
Vehicle
T5 SE 140
Not many convertors using the Cali kitchens and roof also use the interior plastic trims and blinds which are far superior to nylon carpet walls and curtains.
 
Nick.C

Nick.C

VIP Member
Messages
49
Location
Kent
Vehicle
T6 Ocean 150
We hired a conversion, wife hated it, then hired a Cali, wife loved it. We now have an Ocean.
You see a lot of different conversions at the Caravan and Camping show, many of them look great. I do wonder about the weight and hence fuel consumption of some of the higher quality conversions though.
Our friends have a conversion and love it, but it would not be for us. Their new conversion cost about the same as our 10 month old van and ours came with a lot of optional extras (LED lights, chrome package, shower, laminated front screen, reversing camera, high spec speakers, sat nav to name a few). Each to their own.
 
Wiggly Woo

Wiggly Woo

née liaoyang
Lifetime VIP Member
Messages
545
Location
South Wales
Vehicle
T6 Ocean 204
There are several complete Cali interiors on eBay. All you need is £12k and a nice donor van with a right side sliding door. I’d much rather that than the carpeted van in Simon’s video.


Makes you wonder where these interiors really come from.
 
andyinluton

andyinluton

VIP Member
Messages
1,529
Vehicle
T5 SE 140
A great watch. They got around one of the issues raised here about safety by fitting a diesel hob and no need to carry a gas cylinder.
I like the idea of the diesel hob,
I thought they didn’t get used as the DVLA requirement to be classified as a motor caravan is for “a permanently fixed cooking facility powered by either gas or electricity “

They should fit them to the calis and keep the existing locker for the bbq gas with an external connection.
 
California4x4

California4x4

VIP Member
Messages
378
Location
Norway
Vehicle
T6 Ocean 150 4Motion
I like the idea of the diesel hob,
I thought they didn’t get used as the DVLA requirement to be classified as a motor caravan is for “a permanently fixed cooking facility powered by either gas or electricity “

They should fit them to the calis and keep the existing locker for the bbq gas with an external connection.
If that is the wording and what the DVLA are looking for, it would suggest that particular van would not be able to be registered as a camper van. So it would remain as what the original van was registered as. This may limit some insurance companies and affect maximum speed etc.

As for a diesel hob, if I was going for one of those, I would rather forgo the gas altogether and increase the fresh water storage (in principal) as not an easy mod.
 
B J G

B J G

VIP Member
Messages
1,933
Location
Stamford
Vehicle
T6 Ocean 204 4Motion
from information on users of VW vans that are having DIY conversions or having a 'Professional' conversion done is that they also spend not inconsiderable sums of money having , dash, sound system, lights, steering wheel, engine power upgrades etc. carried out over and above the Campervan related initial costs.
 
M

MattC

Messages
14
Location
N Wales
Vehicle
N/A
If that is the wording and what the DVLA are looking for, it would suggest that particular van would not be able to be registered as a camper van. So it would remain as what the original van was registered as. This may limit some insurance companies and affect maximum speed etc.

As for a diesel hob, if I was going for one of those, I would rather forgo the gas altogether and increase the fresh water storage (in principal) as not an easy mod.
Diesel hobs don't seem to be a problem for registration, despite that particular wording. I opted for a Wallas diesel hob/heater in my Jerba Sanna, which was registered from new in July 2018 with Body Type "Motor Caravan".

I suppose it's possible that there may be some difference in treatment between a campervan like the Jerba, manufactured new as a 2-stage build with Full Type Approval (my V5c has the Model as VW Jerba Sanna, no mention of anywhere of Transporter) vs a one-off after-market conversion, but I can't really see why. And of course with the current situation regarding vans being classed as MPVs or Van with Side Windows, the type of hob seems to be the least of folk's problems!
 

HTML

Top