Newchum

Submitted: Wednesday, Feb 09, 2005 at 00:35
ThreadID: 121775 Views:3738 Replies:7 FollowUps:1
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I have recently joined this group.

My wife and I are contemplating the purchase of a van to join
the "almost grey nomads" in the next 12 mths or so. I am exploring
the feature/benefits of the Supreme Getaway, the Bushtracker and the
Kedron ATV. As you are all committed owners of Bushtrackers, I thought I
would get some biased opinions of what drove you to Bushtracker versus
the others.

On paper, Kedron looks every bit as capable to my untrained eye so would be interested to hear why some of you went Bushtracker.

Anyone with comments to help guide my thinking process?

Regards
Bruce J
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Reply By: Bushtracker - Wednesday, Feb 09, 2005 at 00:47

Wednesday, Feb 09, 2005 at 00:47
Bushtracker here,
No doubt you will get a lot of response on this one... I won't tell you the obvious, except that our Website at www.bushtracker.com shows what you will discover for yourself if you go see how they are built... A trip to the Factory of each will answer your question with your own eyes.

There really is not much comparison to a Bushtracker if you take the time to look.

Kind Regards, stg
AnswerID: 565834

Reply By: Panna Trackers - Wednesday, Feb 09, 2005 at 01:46

Wednesday, Feb 09, 2005 at 01:46
Hi Bruce
I have gone through the process you are just starting. Spent the last 9 months looking at every thing I could find on Kedron, Phoenix and Bushtracker. Still have the quotes and videos to prove it.
After all was considered the Bushtracker won through. Why. In a past life I built and sailed my own 40 ft yacht. The Bushtracker is the closest I could come to going back to the lifestyle without getting wet. Built strong with all the features to make it independant sold me. We ordered our van late last year.
I haven't been to the Factory yet but am looking forward to a visit at the end of this month to discuss all the little things that will make it what want.
My best advice is to check out the lot with what you want achieve in mind. then order a Bushtracker
Regards
Trevor
AnswerID: 565835

Reply By: SuziTracker - Wednesday, Feb 09, 2005 at 02:35

Wednesday, Feb 09, 2005 at 02:35
Bruce

I take it you live at Kiama. We will be there in 2 1/2 weeks time if you want to look at our van. Send me an E-Mail before Saturday (We leave on sunday)at bnhoo@tpg.com.au.

Regards
Brian & Norma
AnswerID: 565836

Reply By: Grumblebum & Dragon - Wednesday, Feb 09, 2005 at 05:23

Wednesday, Feb 09, 2005 at 05:23
Hi Bruce,

Welcome to the forum and soon to be caravan owner brigade - whatever you choose to own and travel with.

We have been through the same process and..... there are no easy answers - only hard decisions - usually based around price and quality.

Without knocking the opposition we thought the Supreme was not as robust as some other makes - probably very good but more of an occassioal dirt-roader, though I did not get the opportunity to talk to owners.

Phoenix we thought about - but did not like their interiors, looked a bit 'boxy' - almost unfinished.

Kedron captured the imagination for a while. We were able to speak to a few owners - some of whom had been down the Gibb. One applied liberal quantities of tape to the outside of the van, round doors, vents, windows etc in an effort to keep the dust out. Another owner had his microwave come off and some problems with cupboards or shelves coming apart inside the van.

Thought about Golf for a while - clearance and off-road track capability ??....... but the BT seemed to have the level of engineering and attention to detail that made us feel very comfortable. We spent a fair bit of time poring over this forum and I also had the opportunity of crawling all over and underneath of a two-and-a-half year old permanently lived in van. That sold us. Plus the factory visit confirmed what we had seen. They are not cheap - but you get what you pay for and then some.

How much is your 'peace of mind' worth... especially if it going to be your home? They are all individually built, not mass produced, and the BT people know what they are talking about. I read an article recently about an owner who had had a number of "very robust" discussions with one of the Directors over some enginnering detail - at least the owner had the exceptional good grace to admit that, in the fullness of time, BT were right and he was wrong. (No prizes for guessing who that was Ha!)

So, all caravan are good - a day in any caravan out bush is better tha any day in the city. Each is designed for a specific purpose, some are better at some things than others are. It all comes down to what you want to do with it - and for how long. If I was only doing an 3 - 4 week trip once a year - with a bit of dirt road touring thrown in, I would buy a good second hand unit from one of the better known - 'off the tarmac' builders. But to live in, and tour on a full-time basis, to the more remote locations - beaches, desert tracks and sundry wilderness down the long brown road.... then think about a BT.

Talk to as many owners of different vans as you can, especially only those that go off the beaten track - get to ask lots of questions and spend time underneath the van - this is where it all happens.

Isn't it interesting that you don't hear owners on this forum whinging about the poor quality whatever's in their vans.

Good luck in your choice.

John and Jean
AnswerID: 565837

Reply By: Noosa Fox - Thursday, Feb 10, 2005 at 02:27

Thursday, Feb 10, 2005 at 02:27
Being an ex-Mexican we had been going to the Melbourne Caravan shows regularly and had planned on a Future Systems van, as that was the best van that we had seen. Then in Nov 2000 we went to the Melbourne 4X4 show, and Tracy & Peter were there with 2 Bushtrackers on display. They looked to be very strongly built and the finish was as good if not better than the Future Systems vans, so our thoughts were quickly leaning towards a Bushtracker. A couple of weeks later we then went to the Sandown Liesurefest where we spent a lot more time going over the Bushtrackers and had more or less made up our minds. We then travelled to Queensland and did the factory tour and placed our order before Christmas, and picked up the new van in June 2001.

Since then we have had the opportunity to compare our van with friends who own a Trakmaster, and Kedron off road vans and a lot of other friends with more road oriented vans, and the Bushtracker seems much better quality and value for money than any of the other brands. While out at Windorah we compared ours with a Pheonix, and for a similar price on the same length van we had solar power, battery charger, and inverter and a lot of other features that the Pheonix didn't have a much better finnish as well.

The friends with the Kedron had to take theirs back because it had cupboard doors that didn't even fully cover the door opening properly and when they travelled on a corrugated road the drawers bounced out.

Friends with a new Trakmaster found that they contracted to a set price, and then when it came to having lots of little things installed that are all included in a Bushtracker, they had to pay extra for, and again the quality is not their. Even to the extent of having a TV antenna outlet in a wall where there was no power outlet or place to sit the TV. The extra antenna point just put through the wall in a more suitable place was then an extra.

We had the misfortune to crash ours while travelling at 100kph and it rolled on its side. Had it not been for the bent front left suspension we could have continued to tow it, and from the right and side and rear you wouldn't have even known it had been involved in an accident. The Bushtucker man did a similar thing to his Pheonix last year and they apparently just picked up the pieces.

I don't think that there is another van around that is engineered to the same standard as a Bushtracker, with the solid square tubing aluminium framing that will stand up to a decent impact, not like the timber frames of the compeditors, or the flimsy 1mm thick C section aluminium that some other builders use.

We have also found that the Bushtrackers don't appear to de-value like lesser brands do.

We have towed our van through some very rough country and last year after spending time in the Kimberley we went down the west coast to Perth where someone who was thinking of buying one looked all over it, and he thought it must have been brand new. He didn't believe me that it had done 80,000 km until I showed him the log book.

As the others above have said, you won't be sorry if you buy a Bushtracker, and their after sales service is also excellent.
Enjoying the friendship of BOG members

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AnswerID: 565838

Reply By: The Tower Trackers - Thursday, Feb 10, 2005 at 22:46

Thursday, Feb 10, 2005 at 22:46
To the KiamaKids,

I would also like to reinforce what the previous answers have stated, we also, after doing all the research and looking - purchased a Bushtracker.

Our background was - we used to own cattle road trains in northern Qld and travelled all over Qld & NSW on dirt roads the majority of the time. Pulling 3 trailers over dirt roads my husband definately had VERY set ideas about what we had to purchase to stand up to these conditions as we like to travel in the bush most of the time. On going through the factory and seeing how the vans were made and the quality & strength both exterior & interior was what decided us on the Bushtracker. It has not disappointed us.

We have done a lot of bush travelling - over the Gibb River about 12 months ago, though it wasn't the roughest road we travelled on by a long shot, however corrugation wise I think it surpassed any thing else we had tackled!!!!!!!!!!!! We have had no problems with the van and we are about to pick up our second van next week.

Your best bet - as they all say is to go to the factory and see for yourselves.

Comparing the Kedron, we felt that the internal finish was not as sturdy as the Bushtracker and I am not sure about the external features whether it is timber or metal. Hubby not here to ask!!!

All the very best in your search

Kind Regards

Marg
AnswerID: 565839

Follow Up By: KiamaKids - Friday, Feb 11, 2005 at 03:54

Friday, Feb 11, 2005 at 03:54
Thanks for the responses folks. Certainly seems like the Boggers are a loyal bunch. Maybe Steve should have you all on commission.

I posted a similar note on the Kedron users group at the same time and have had but one response. And that was from someone who saw my note here.

What does it mean I ask? Are they so happy they don't want to talk about it?

I'll keep watching for more input.

Regards and thanks.

Bruce J
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FollowupID: 844340

Reply By: Luvntravln - Wednesday, Feb 16, 2005 at 00:05

Wednesday, Feb 16, 2005 at 00:05
Hi

I am not going to be as long-winded as my fellow boggers. We have been living in our Land Yacht full-time since 4 June and we love the BT, love the life, and wouldn't change anything if we were to rebuild!

Our BT is featured in the March Caravan & Motorhome.

Cheers, Luvntravln
AnswerID: 565840

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