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Need a C1 licence for a Ford E350 type RV

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Need a C1 licence for a Ford E350 type RV

Postby Road-Trippers » Mon Aug 19, 2013 7:39 am

Hi All!!

We are newbie RV'ers looking at buying our first RV but just need a bit of advice, so any input would be greatly appreciated :D

We don't have a huge budget, only about £12,000, so are looking at some C class Ford E350's from the late 1990's/2000 with LPG conversions already done. We are a youngish couple and will be mainly using it just for the 2 of us in the UK but have a couple of friends who are keen to tag along on some Euro trips with us. So looking at 6 births with a fixed back bedroom to give us plenty of room.

Although we've never owned an Rv, we have done 3 RV holidays across the USA in the last few years where we hired the big A Class type one with pop out sides etc, so have a bit of experience. We just LOVE it so much we thought we would take the plunge and buy our own and for the next couple of years do some UK and Euro Road Trips, after which we will probably sell it on and go back the USA as we just love it over there :D

Just have a few questions...

Main problem we have is that my hubby and I both passed our tests shortly after 1997 and so cant drive anything over 3.5T. The changes they made to the law are so annoying!! For example our friend who passed pre 1997 who came on our USA road trip - he is allowed to pretty much drive anything, and yet he is awful!! We let him do about 20 miles on holiday before we banned him for the rest of the trip!! My hubby is an awesome driver, just a natural and took to a massive RV like a duck to water, nothing phases him, even on the manic 6 lane highways of LA where we didn't spot one other RV driver crazy enough to attempt it!! And if you had seen the gap he got the RV out of in the Niagara Falls tourist car park, it was incredible. He had a crowd of people who gathered to watch and got a round of applause afterwards!! Not bigging up my own husband but my point is, he is more than capable of driving an RV. And yet he has to take a C1 test, grrrrrr!!

We have been looking online and trying to find a good price on getting this done to reduce the sting of it, just wondered what the going rate is? We live in the Midlands and have found a company in Nottingam who do it for about £900 all in. Is that a good price?

Also, any advice on the RV that we are looking at? Ford Minnie Winnies and the like? We love the look and feel of the American motorhomes but if anyone has any good/bad experiences we are happy to hear them.

Same with LPG converted models, any advice welcome!!

Thanks!! :D
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Re: Need a C1 licence for a Ford E350 type RV

Postby Mrtibbs » Mon Aug 19, 2013 2:48 pm

I wouldn't know the price for taking the C1 test as I am old enough for the government to have issued me with mine years ago :) although when I did a bit of research into taking a new C1+E test your figure seems about right. Have you considered taking the C+E test? That way you would be able to drive the largest RV (40 foot long) and tow a decent sized car behind it without any worries. I don't think it would cost an awful lot more to do that. Worth some thought anyway.
Basically a C Class is the same as buying any RV /motorhome. The layout is the most important thing and then ensuring that you can live with it. Next comes the chassis and Ford or Chevy are both good bases and with regular maintenance will give you years of service, so the usual checks underneath will tell you all you need to know. Water ingress is the biggest killer for any type of "home on wheels" so do be sure to check for any dampness in the coach. Also look for any delamination of the sides, just look fore to aft (or reverse the ends) and look for any "bulges" that you see in the sidewalls. If you see any they could be cause for concern and depending on the size and severity of the bulge, it could cost a small fortune to repair. It is not uncommon to have small bulges very near to a window frame, this indicates that the window has leaked in the past, your concern is that it is not still leaking and you need evidence of a suitable repair.
Good luck in your search, where about's in the Midlands are you based?

Keith
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Re: Need a C1 licence for a Ford E350 type RV

Postby fashratty » Wed Aug 21, 2013 12:06 am

Hi,
The price of £900 is about right, but for £1100 you could take your Class "C" licence which allows you to drive ridge vehicles/trucks over
7.5 tons so if you wanted a 36ft RV weighting 12 tons you would be able to drive this and there is a very good driving school in Mansfield.

The first thing you MUST do is BUY a DAMP METER otherwise it's going to cost you thousands in repairs, Sorry to ring Alarm BELLS, but I did not do
this on my RV and have had to replace all the rear bedroom panels etc because the people had put an headboard at the top of the bed just under the rear window to hide the water damage that had been coming in thru the rear window seal for a long time, next time I buy an RV I will not make the same mistakes.

My RV is a E350 Fourwinds 6 beath with an end bedroom, with a V8 Diesel engine and I get about 18/20 mpg at running between 56/60 mph on cruise
control, it's been a very reliable camper and taken us all over Europe.

Finally, the best of luck on your search, and Happy RVing !!!

Regards


Tony
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Re: Need a C1 licence for a Ford E350 type RV

Postby olley » Wed Aug 21, 2013 4:55 am

Can only agree with Tony don't waste your money on a C1, take the C, its the same test just a bigger vehicle and costs very little more. And if you then want to you can go for the C+E which will allow you to tow more than 750kg.

You may be right about your hubby being an awesome driver, but we all learnt something from the lessons, and no offence meant, but you could be a little biased don't you think. :lol:

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Re: Need a C1 licence for a Ford E350 type RV

Postby Road-Trippers » Wed Aug 21, 2013 7:06 am

Thanks for all your replies, you have all been most helpful :D

About the licence, it may be worth paying the extra then by the sounds of it so he can drive anything should we decide to go bigger in future if we want. And yes, I guess he I am pretty biased with his driving! ;) Although he drives a lot for work, about 50k miles a year, Im sure he will learn a lot from it. My point was more that it is annoying that everyone isnt made to do it which would make more sense, as surely anyone driving such a big thing should be tested for competence and maybe then they could make the fee a bit lower if more people were having to take it.

But hey ho, thats life!! he is going to get booked on one so we can get it all sorted ASAP.

Thanks for the info on the damp meter too, very helpful and def will be getting one of those. Would something like this do the job?

http://item.mobileweb.ebay.co.uk/viewit ... 0974797216

We have looked at a few RVs now but are still looking for the right one for us so any sellers of a C class please feel free to PM me. We are cash buyers and are happy to travel to view :D
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Re: Need a C1 licence for a Ford E350 type RV

Postby Mrtibbs » Sun Aug 25, 2013 4:24 pm

Road-Trippers wrote:Thanks for all your replies, you have all been most helpful :D

Thanks for the info on the damp meter too, very helpful and def will be getting one of those. Would something like this do the job?

http://item.mobileweb.ebay.co.uk/viewit ... 0974797216

We have looked at a few RVs now but are still looking for the right one for us so any sellers of a C class please feel free to PM me. We are cash buyers and are happy to travel to view :D

That looks as though it would do the job.
Is a C Class specifically what you want to buy? You can buy an RV like ours, which is less than 7500Kgs MAM, see here http://www.arvclub.co.uk/Forum/viewtopic.php?f=79&t=4699 and it is an A Class...

Keith
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Re: Need a C1 licence for a Ford E350 type RV

Postby JohnLittle » Tue Sep 03, 2013 7:19 pm

Hi Cant help with the C1 bit of licence but Ford E350 are great just bought one off ebay with 28000 on the clock at nearly 20 years old she looks and feels great both to drive and park up in well worth the money.
regards Pete
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Re: Need a C1 licence for a Ford E350 type RV

Postby paul.a.t.mccrea » Tue Jan 07, 2014 9:24 am

Hi
We took the plunge and bought Minnie Winnie FORD 9.5m and as it only had 35K on the clockso.. we had the LPG conversion done
so we now have 200litre LPG 200 litre Petrol. This is a 1996 model imported 2005 and only covered 1800 mls!!! from 2005 to 2013 the MOT confirmed.
We are at present in Spain touring and found LPG abroad not an issue..euronozzle needed in Spain.... We are lucky as we are old foggies and C1 lic we have ...but this year we have to have medicals to keep... so back to the cold in spring and get sorted..I believe this takes a while so will apply asap we can.....We are based in Rugby so if you find a suitable RV loo us up
paul.a.t.mccrea@gmail.com.....

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