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Old 03-05-2014, 07:47 PM   #11 (permalink)
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Oh yes, micro chip the cat, tell her to bring some bear mace.

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Old 03-05-2014, 09:42 PM   #12 (permalink)
igo
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Mini Box Truck - '05 Scion Xb
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Someone posted this video in another thread but I think it applies to you too...

Prius set up fro car camping
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Old 03-05-2014, 10:37 PM   #13 (permalink)
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Acura TSX - '06 Acura TSX
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90 day: 21.82 mpg (US)

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I lived in a Subaru Legacy for over a year. Just enough room in the back to fit my 6'2" frame. I averaged 27mpg in mixed driving, and nothing except feet of snow would stop it.

My 24hr gym membership is $8/mo for all access, but that deal is no longer available. Every morning I got a workout, shower, and shave. The Anytime Fitness suggestion is good.

Laundry mat for washing cloths.

I ate many meals off the dollar menu. I'd mix it up with $3 meals from KFC or $2 corndog, JoJo and a drink from Safeway. Most of the food deals have gone away, but it's still possible to eat "out" on a budget. $5 Little Cesar large peperoni pizza is good for 2 meals.

All of this was voluntary. I didn't have a need for a house at the time, so I banked 95% of my paycheck.
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Old 03-06-2014, 08:43 AM   #14 (permalink)
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Al the Third, year four - '13 Honda Fit Base
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I have a pop-up. We've had it for years, love the thing and take three or four trips a year with our two kids. On one of the trips we take our 75 pound lab, too.

I recommend against using one for nomadic living. A self contained unit- RV or custom- gives much more freedom, convenience and security. Even if she decides to limit herself to campgrounds, "setting up" will just involve putting a folding chair outside.
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Originally Posted by sheepdog44 View Post
Transmission type Efficiency
Manual neutral engine off.100% @MPG <----- Fun Fact.
Manual 1:1 gear ratio .......98%
CVT belt ............................88%
Automatic .........................86%

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Old 03-07-2014, 10:54 PM   #15 (permalink)
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The 3rd generation grand caravan would be my choice for a single person, about a 96-99. They are so much less initial purchase ($2000 will buy a nice one) that even if they only get 22 mpg you will almost never make up the purchase price of even a used Prius that you can't camp in. These will also travel dirt mountain roads, beaches, snow, ect pretty well. The 3.3 or 3.8 v6 were the most reliable and common. The minivan will stealth camp better then anything. The only thing I personally would customize would be to add a real rv heater for cold nights as I just don't trust "tent" heaters. That and a 2nd separate battery for the heater fan and whatever other comforts you might add, then you never drain down your van battery. By the time you add a battery box, heater, and a small underbody propane tank you will be over $1000 more but this would my heater choice
Van Cafe: Vanagon Parts - Propex Propane Heater HS2211 Kit | Heater
It mounts underneath the van. The pre 4th generation caravans didn't have any fold into the floor seats so they have more room underneath or on the later vans the rear seat storage well would also work but I would cover it and completely seal it off from the interior.

The good thing with stealth camping is you don't always have to pay for a real camp spot. Walmarts, rest areas, some pullouts along the highway, just about any forest service road, etc. Free.

Last edited by Hersbird; 03-07-2014 at 11:10 PM..
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Old 03-07-2014, 11:45 PM   #16 (permalink)
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Snow White and the 6.2 Dwarfs - '11 Chevrolet Corvette LT2
Last 3: 26.46 mpg (US)

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Eek...

Please be very cautious and do a LOT of research on them/the one you look at :/
The only perk about buying a used caravan is that the transmission and ac unit has most likely already been replaced/rebuilt at least once.
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Old 03-08-2014, 12:03 AM   #17 (permalink)
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Snow White and the 6.2 Dwarfs - '11 Chevrolet Corvette LT2
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1999 Dodge Caravan Reliability - MSN Autos

It is ~3 times more, but

2006 Mazda Mazda5 Reliability - MSN Autos
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Old 03-08-2014, 09:40 PM   #18 (permalink)
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The transmission problems on those year caravans is grisly overrated. Even on the link you posted you see it some very inexpensive speed sensors not total transmission failures. Actually the Honda Odyssey of these years is a transmission eater. The Dodge got a bad rap from the earlier years actually from wrong fluid commonly used at anybody but a Dodge dealer (Dodge didn't help matter by saying common fluid was OK if atf4 was not available). My father had a transmission a shop diagnose a total rebuild he then completely fixed by just a fluid change with the proper fluid. There is no better minivan from the late 1990s then the Dodge. A reason Chevy and Ford just plain got out of the market even though there are millions of buyers out there. I had a Dodge from 87, 88, 95, and 99 never new, all over 100k (one over 2) with never a problem on any of them. We went to the KIA in 2007 but probably will go back to the Dodge next time.

Last edited by Hersbird; 03-08-2014 at 09:46 PM..
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Old 03-08-2014, 10:12 PM   #19 (permalink)
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Snow White and the 6.2 Dwarfs - '11 Chevrolet Corvette LT2
Last 3: 26.46 mpg (US)

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I've only had issues.

One part of my family worked for chrysler, and everyone had one- issues for vehicles were like oil changes for me. Every few months someone had one. I remember how excited a closer family member was in her brand new sebring convertible- the transmission was just terrible, clunking and aggressive shifts. I find chrysler styling appealing, but that's as far as it goes. I always advise extreme caution with a chrysler, if you've had good luck, I only hope it continues for you.

That list of costs for fixes I would not focus on, as much as the probability of an issue. It could only take 5 minutes and $1 for a mechanic to fix my car, but if I am in the middle of Nevada driving through the desert, it doesn't matter the cost- it's the risk I am putting myself in.

Pulling the MSN list for the 2006 year shows this: 2006 Dodge Caravan Reliability - MSN Autos

Again, your decision is on you and I guess this is not a 35,000 mile journey, but I would advise significantly researching what you are interested in going with.

EDIT: Pulled 2006 to compare to the 2006 5 series.
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Old 03-09-2014, 05:26 PM   #20 (permalink)
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Buy low, sell high and travel for free? There will be no end of stories to hear and tell.

If it needs an interior I'd try BamBoomWagens.com

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