I'm considering buying a 1982 Shasta Class C on a Ford (E350?? chassis). I have not seen it yet in person so all condition reports are from my brother, who has no stake in the sale, but knows less than I do about RV's in general. This vehicle has the original 460/carb engine which has 77500 miles. It was stored in a farm building except when in use by the original owner. The second owner, who is selling it now, is an OTR truck driver who bought it from the original owner last winter to take his wife and 2 grandkids from southeast KS to San Francisco and back this summer. He put all new tires and attended to drive train issues, verified the 4.0 KW generator, roof air and kitchen equipment worked as intended. His wife is a professional cook so the kitchen got more use last month than it ever will again - at least if I buy it! Stove, microwave, and Refi all reportedly work properly. There is no evidence of roof leaks or soft floors anywhere in the camper. My problem is that I will be using the vehicle as a hotel on wheels as I visit my mom in a rest-home in south Kansas. We sold her house of 50 years and hotel availability is extremely expensive and limited in her small town. It would cost upwards of $5500/yr for hotel rooms alone and on top of that dogs there are not permitted. These are both unacceptable conditions of hotel stays.
Issues for my operation are: 1) The furnace has not been checked or operated recently, and possibly never. I will be using the RV year round in central KS and plan on installing a tank heater system to be plugged into the hangar electric where it will be stored when not in use. But the possible issues with the furnace are a concern. WHAT ARE THE CHANCES THE FURNACE WILL FUNCTION NORMALLY AND SAFELY? WHAT COST MIGHT I EXPECT TO GET IT UP TO SPEED? 2) The shower has been removed and reportedly was never used. The previous 2 owners camped in RV parks and used the provided shower facilities. There are no such facilities where I will use the unit so the shower system must work. The hot water system is reported to work normally. Currently there are a cracks in the shower pan. I do not suspect any leakage since the shower was never used and there is no apparent softness to the sub-floor but the waterproof shower base will certainly need to be replaced (or repaired if that is possible) when the shower is restored to functionality. The one repair facility I spoke to already said original parts are not commonly available for such items. WHAT ARE MY OPTIONS HERE? 3) I would like to get a manual for this RV. Don't know if those are available and right now I do not have specific model information anyway. I'll get what info I can when I go to look at the vehicle in a couple of weeks. I'll attach a picture if that would help identify it. The reported dimensions are 23.5ft long and 10.5 ft high to top of roof air. The dimensions are critical and rule out many more modern Class C's because the hangar where it will be stored has an 11.25 ft door and is 31 ft deep. Many other dimensions and particulars are as of now unknown to me. ARE MANUALS AVAILABLE FOR UNITS THIS OLD? AND IF SO WHERE?
I have never owned an RV personally and have no room, expertise, tools, or time to make needed repairs or upgrades. And I do not intend to acquire any of the above. Any required work will need to be contracted by "RV shops" in the Wichita/Harper Ks area. When I am there I need to visit my mom and attend to her needs - not work on the RV. I have already contacted Harper Camper Land which is managed by a high school buddy about installing the needed tank heater system for year round use. Unfortunately I have no indication of their suitability to do such work - but they are local.
I would like any input or pitfalls to avoid in this projected project. I have been an aircraft owner for 35 years and am aware of type specific maintenance and it's cost (and wide range of honesty/value of work). I don't want or need a vehicle to travel to resorts in the summer but a reliable place to stay by myself on my monthly visits to attend to my mother's needs, 600nm from my current home.
Thanks in advance