Lookie what is sitting in my driveway!!!

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PineyCruisin

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It is a 2005 Chevy 1500 4.3L v6 with 102,200 miles and it drives like a dream! Super smooth shifting, tight and responsive steering and the suspension is like sitting in buttah. The previously owner (funny to write that now) was sad to see it go and we know why. What a joy to drive! We can not wait to take her on a long trip! 16 yr old DD just told us yesterday, before this van purchase, that she wants to go to Shenandoah National Forest so that might be our first trip. 

It has absolutely everything on our "would like" list -- barn doors, sliding windows, hight top, (my 5'6" frame can stand completely upright without even bending my head!), removable running boards, cruise control......etc

We were a bit concerned about the v6 but found a pretty good grade during the test drive and the van just glided up with hardly any push on the pedal. We are keeping any inside conversion as minimal and light as possible for our get away camping trips and if we decide to be full timers would like another vehicle anyway. This vehicle is really our testing ground for possible full time vandwelling.

Absolutely no rust on the body and the underbelly is really pretty good for the NE (best we've seen in the 3 months of looking...just surface rust in a few spots that we want to take care of ASAP). 

The only major thing needed so far are new tires and a tune up. Hubby is going to see if he can get to the spark plugs ---he does our other vehicles but he has no idea how easily it will be to get to the engine from the doghouse. Transmission, brakes, and cooling system were completely serviced in the past 1 1/2 years. There are several small imperfections don't matter much and/or easily repairable--eg windshield gasket needs to be repaired/replaced, barn door is not closing right, one of window screens is torn a couple inches from frame, etc. 

I can't tell you how much I have appreciated the advise *and* encouragement from this forum! I'll never forget how everyone kept repeating "be patient, your van will come along". Truer words were ne'er spoken. THANK YOU TO ALL!
 

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Ballenxj

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Congrats on your new to you van. :) I once owned a GMC Safari AWD with the 4.3 engine. I was impressed with it's power.
 

John61CT

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Sweet! If that were mine I'd jump on fixing/maintaining the little stuff as soon as you see it.

Then when (sorry) bigger stuff comes up, it will really feel worth staying on top of it, keep it close as possible to mint, within reason of course.

Keep it light the V6 should be no problem.
 

hepcat

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I had the 4.3L V6 in a '98 Astro AWD and it's one of the few cars/vans over the years I really regret trading off. I towed a '61 Airstream Bambi 16' travel trailer from Iowa to Arizona and back with it, no problem... and had my wife and three kids in the van and all our 'stuff' too and it never seemed under-powered. Great engines... great vans.

Congrats!
 

TWIH

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I'll give you $1 more than you paid if you'll get it painted white and deliver to Phoenix...

Great van you found there!  Does she have a sister?   :)
 

BobBski

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Congratulations....look forward to hearing about your adventures:)
 

Mobilesport

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Them full size chevy conversion vans really do give you a smooth luxury ride along with
 nice steering and a really quiet exhaust system , i have a 1996 Chevrolet Express 
conversion van and fell in love with it the first time i drove it.
 

PineyCruisin

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@Ballenxj, @djkeev, @bobBski: Thanks so much for the congrats! 

@John61CT:   We think alike--tomorrow DH wants to go straight to the auto glass place to fix the windshield, then tires & tune up soon after, and attack the other little things as we can. Don't think we'll ever get this van to mint--too many body small dings and scrapes that you really can't see from the far away shot and the interior, tho clean, has plenty of imperfections (which the price kinda reflected). We are also thinking about resale since we may be selling it in a couple years for a bigger vehicle. And good to hear about the v6--that really was our only hesitation about this van.

@highdesertranger - yes! I'll post more pics.
 

PineyCruisin

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@hepcat - I was wondering where you were! I'm so relieved hearing all these stories about the 4.3--granted, they are in the shorter vans, but still nice to hear none the less. This owner was really reluctant to let this one go, too. (he lives on Staten Island and needed a smaller car for wife to commute to Brooklyn).

@ThisWorldIsntHome - My, that's a tempting offer. ;)  And I would love a white conversion van myself! A plain white conversion van with no decals or pinstripes was the favorite color one I've seen.  But, even painting this one white for ya, I don't think the undercarriage would pass muster in Phoenix. When I say it's good for the NE, it is probably nowhere near as clean as  Phoenix vehicles.
 
@MobileSport - We've been test driving so many conversion vans but this was our first Chevy. What a difference! They are extremely hard to find for sale around here and the ones that were in decent shape are usually way overpriced, IMO. It was love at first drive for me, too.
 

TWIH

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PineyCruisin said:
@hepcat - I was wondering where you were! I'm so relieved hearing all these stories about the 4.3--granted, they are in the shorter vans, but still nice to hear none the less. This owner was really reluctant to let this one go, too. (he lives on Staten Island and needed a smaller car for wife to commute to Brooklyn).

@ThisWorldIsntHome - My, that's a tempting offer. ;)  And I would love a white conversion van myself! A plain white conversion van with no decals or pinstripes was the favorite color one I've seen.  But, even painting this one white for ya, I don't think the undercarriage would pass muster in Phoenix. When I say it's good for the NE, it is probably nowhere near as clean as  Phoenix vehicles.
 
@MobileSport - We've been test driving so many conversion vans but this was our first Chevy. What a difference! They are extremely hard to find for sale around here and the ones that were in decent shape are usually way overpriced, IMO. It was love at first drive for me, too.

White can be overrated. Currently I spend several months a year in AZ and so white does help with hear gain, yet if a dweller moves with temperatures or elevation (you can go up to Flagstaff in the summers, 7,000 feet) then van color, other than deep blue or black, are not dealbrakers. I'm not finding a white van set up the way I want, so colors come next.

It's true that AZ or southwest vehicles tend to have less or no rust however there's so many re-titled vehicles or salvaged vans here that you can't presume it "lived" here. That's what the due diligence AutoCheck or Carfax is necessary.  I don't see too many rustbuckets but I have seen some.
Every major flood or other disaster leads to thousands of vehicles getting their titles "washed" and they end up all over the country:

[font=arial, sans-serif]1 Million Used Cars Are Hiding A Terrible Secret | HuffPost[/font]
[font=arial, sans-serif]www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/09/08/title-washing_n_5767494.html[/font]
http://webcache.googleusercontent.c...hing_n_5767494.html+&cd=2&hl=en&ct=clnk&gl=us
https://www.google.com/search?safe=...&ved=0ahUKEwiggI6x8erTAhUL9mMKHXcyDw4QHwguMAE
Sep 8, 2014 - Part of the reason title washing a problem is that there is no federal car titling law. It comes down to a patchwork of inconsistent state laws, and ...
 

PineyCruisin

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This world isn said:
Every major flood or other disaster leads to thousands of vehicles getting their titles "washed" and they end up all over the country:

Sep 8, 2014 - Part of the reason title washing a problem is that there is no federal car titling law. It comes down to a patchwork of inconsistent state laws, and ...

While scanning CL ads for RVs (was still looking for small class B at same time as conversion vans) a couple weeks ago, I noticed a post that was warning CL users of this type of scam. S/he had purchased a seemingly clean RV, both in title and the interior, on CL only to find later that there was castrophic water damage below floor/behind the paneling that was obviously due from flooding and therefore wanted others to be wary.

Also, I live where Hurricane Sandy hit pretty hard and unfortunately had to look for a car around that time. Because of the scamming and problems going on with flooded vehicles we decided to purchase our first new car (we always purchased used prior) to avoid the hassle. It was really, really bad...a couple small lot dealership were caught and forced out of business.
 

closeanuf

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In Texas a car that has been water damaged is SUPPOSED to have the word 'FLOOD" stamped in large letters on the title and that is supposed to stay with that vehicle from then on.  There are ways to get around it I suppose but Texas is at least trying.
 

PineyCruisin

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Was raining all day today so spent a good part of it sitting inside of Boris and imagining what will be needed/converted for our excursions. I then went to a thrift store and purchased my first conversion items--a privacy curtain for in back of the cab for $5 and a large stainless steel bowl for $3 to convert to a DIY sink. I'm officially on my way! (not sure if I'll be posting in the conversion forum since we may not be doing much)

Also, I took some pictures of the interior.....

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Forgot to mention that the van came with a working navigation system and backup camera! Also, while taking down the TV, I found an invertor that the AC monitor was plugged into. Don't know if this is a standard setup for conversion vans because the PO had the original monitor replaced. I would like to remove the monitor and knock out holes on either side of the TV to use as storage. But, I have to proceed with caution with resale in mind.

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The interior was a huge selling point for me. Was hoping to find a van with a neutral and simple interior so was thrilled when I saw the inside of this van and how minimal the headliner was (very unusual in my searching) And I love the shelving throughout the entire parameter. I already have a Rubbermaid basket that I know fits perfectly along the sides so will buy more and that back shelf space is HUGE.

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Just wanted to show the shades down. Love these shades for privacy.
 

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rvpopeye

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I'd go ahead and cut those storage holes and just trim them out with wood that matches the rest of the trim .

That's what custom is all about dontchaknow!
 
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