I'm new to this forum and new to caravaning.
I will be purchasing my first second hand caravan and am torn between a 1983 Sprite Swift and a 1986 Caravette 5.
Any thoughts on which would be the better buy.
I would appreciate your feedback.
Welkom op die forum.
Dewald, If I remember correctly, the caravans are more or less the same. Same size, same lay-out, same excellent suspension. A bit heavy on the ball, because of the design but that is no big problem. They were also known as very stable behind the tow vehicle. We had a 1984 Sprite Supersport. Both caravans were built by Caravans International and the Gypsey was a bit better appointed. It was also a bit higher with the roof raised. I think Paul's concern is a bit overly pessimistic. Both vans probably have a net weight of about 650 Kg with about 200 kg extra for loading. We originally towed our Sprite, which was bigger than the two you mentioned, being about the same as the Caravette 6 with a Peogeot 504 with 60Kw, but quite adequate low down torque. Your Caddy produces at least 81Kw with plenty of torque, so I don't think you will have problems. The only issue is to check the quality of the two units. Look especially for possible wood rot. If possible, have someone in the know assist you.
I also share Paul's love for the Skippers by the way.
Thank you PaddyandPaul for your feedback I have looked at the Sherpa but for me it's a bit tight. ;-) and does not look like a proper caravan but sure it s a great option for some.
@Fred thank you for the very informative post.
Yes I have done some research as you said I dont think pulling it will be an issue as the GVM of the Swift is only 750kg. I'm really keen on the swift and have gone to have a look at it. There is no visible water damage on the inside walls or roof and no damp smell inside the van. Pop up roof sides have been redone and also outside no visible damage . I found a guy on this forum that comes highly recommended who can inspect the van for me which I will do for my own sanity.
Cant wait to get camping.
Altwee baie populere karavane. Soos reeds genoem....kyk maar vir die beste opgepaste een....karavaan herstel kostes is baie hoog as jy dit nie self kan doen nie
Make sure you crawl underneath the caravan and inspect the wood carefully. I hope you find that at least one is in a good condition and have years of fun. If you happen to have children, there is no better family holidays than by caravan. Our three daughters almost grew up camping and two of them and their families are avid campers, having 'converted' their husbands. At this stage both still do tent camping, but the youngest one and her husband are starting to seriously consider getting a caravan.
I had a 1984 Sprite swift, to me that was the best. My niece had a 1985 Caravette 5. (I bought mine in 1990, sold it in 2006) We did a lot of camping together and compare the two vans. The Swift was lighter, also a bit lower. In the middle the rally a small pole to lift the tent in the middle, the caravette not and had problems in heave rain. Mine never had woodrot, I sold it to my sister and they still go camping with it - last camp was last year. The Caravette picked up woodrot by the front window and the roof top - (was not so expensive to fix) They sold it and the owner still go camping with it! Believe it or not my tow vehicle was a 1400 Datsun bakkie (4 speed) I never had problems towing it, went a lot to Eastern transvaal, one time to Swadini, to Sabie - Merry Pebbels and to Badplaas. After the family grow my next tow vehicle was a 2.0l ford sierra station wagon - what a pleasure! The caddy is a nice tow vehicle, I had the 1.9tdi that I pulled my sprite swing. Due to the solid axcle at the back and it can take a load at the back ( meant to carry a load) Keep to the basic principles, no kyalami driving and your 1600 Caddy will do fine.
Both are great caravans. I would have a look at the condition of the two caravans and base my decision on that.