Our adventure van started as a 1996 Dodge Ram Van (B1500). Creaky hinges, loose steering box, bald front tires, partially installed seats, bed liner paint and all. During the test drive, the transmission shifted well, the AC worked, and the owner was suspiciously honest about what was done and what would need to be done. I say suspiciously because I have no reason to suspect he lied about anything, but can’t ever fully trust a craigslist sale. Welcome home!
I have yet to purchase a vehicle in the daylight (and I’ve made many a craigslist transaction); the next morning is a fun experiment to see if I maximized the grin-to-cringe ratio. We knew we’d have to do a bit of cosmetic and mechanical work to the van but at the current price, we’d be able to swap the motor and still be under budget if necessary. At 260,000 miles, that project was not out of the question!
Kate is the lead content creator for ParkedInParadise.com and has spent over two years living in a camper van conversion. She has traveled through 48 US states and writes about van life, camping and RV living.