Jump to content

Is this 1985 Huntsman worth buying?


Recommended Posts

Being able to go out and see some of the countryside during this time of lockdowns and everything being closed makes the prospect of dry camping across America seem very appealing to me right now, especially with most other vacation opportunities out of the question.

One Toyota motorhome near me has caught my eye, but I'm just wondering if there are any reasons to be cautious buying it. First off, I'm already prepared to do all of the work that I can do on my own to get the rv ready to go; the only kinds of things I would probably go see a mechanic for would be things I can't reasonable do without serious tool investments. What I'm most afraid of is the reliability of the mechanical side of things. There seems to be some pretty significant repairs made to this rv already (even has the full float axle!). Should I be happy that so much work has been done on the truck before it was up for sale, or is it simply indicative of more problems that will quickly pop up soon? Any more common failures on these that I should be aware of?

I'm a huge newbie to all this, but I've been going into online research overload the past week and was just curious what others think before the smoke starts coming out of my ears.

https://raleigh.craigslist.org/rvs/d/raleigh-1985-toyota-huntsman/7104143663.html

Link to post
Share on other sites

That motorhome has been on CL for a long time. There’s got to be some issues because it should have sold by now.

The owner has dropped the price by over a grand, yet it still sits there. Due diligence is the key here.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Ask when the valves were last checked/ adjusted. Ask whether the machine has overheated since the current owner had it/ prior knowledge of it having overheated.  I'd want to know why the stove was removed. Are there leaks in the propane system? If so, no camper heater either.  Ask whether the transmission has ever been flushed. The machine is over 100,000 miles now. I'd look at the trans dipstick to see what color the fluid is. Consult with trans experts about whether they would recommend flushing or leaving the fluid at the 100,000 mile mark if it has never been done. 

Link to post
Share on other sites
1 minute ago, Scott iv said:

Ask when the valves were last checked/ adjusted. Ask whether the machine has overheated since the current owner had it/ prior knowledge of it having overheated.  I'd want to know why the stove was removed. Are there leaks in the propane system? If so, no camper heater either.  Ask whether the transmission has ever been flushed. The machine is over 100,000 miles now. I'd look at the trans dipstick to see what color the fluid is. Consult with trans experts about whether they would recommend flushing or leaving the fluid at the 100,000 mile mark if it has never been done. 

 

If only sellers would answer these questions honestly lol

Link to post
Share on other sites

From reading the narrative, I get the impression this was a “gut&remodel” job.

Looks like the OP started the project, got overwhelmed and decided to sell. It does have the 6 lug ff axle which is a plus.

If you’re handy enough and can buy for a lower price, it might not be a bad investment. Most people are looking for a turnkey rig.

Update. This rig is now in Raleigh (my home). It’s either a a totally different vehicle then the one I was thinking of (about 3 hours away from my location) or this seller purchased the vehicle and then decided it was too much work.

Edited by fred heath
Link to post
Share on other sites

What kind of price do you think might be more reasonable? There aren't many for sale on the east coast to use as a point of reference, especially since everything is in such a different state of repair.

I'd want a mechanic to check it out before buying. Since you are in the Triangle area, figured I'd ask if you know any local mechanics you have had success with for your Toyota.

Edited by baucom.tyler@gmail.com
Link to post
Share on other sites
11 minutes ago, baucom.tyler@gmail.com said:

What kind of price do you think might be more reasonable? There aren't many for sale on the east coast to use as a point of reference, especially since everything is in such a different state of repair.

I'd want a mechanic to check it out before buying. Since you are in the Triangle area, figured I'd ask if you know any local mechanics you have had success with for your Toyota.

No to mechanic. I do all my own work. Best thing to do is contact the owner and ask any questions. You’re looking at a total rebuild on the inside. If you’ve got carpentry skill think of it as a “blank canvas “. If you’re going to farm out the work it might be a bigger project than you want to take on.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Mechanic would just be to look over the truck and make sure there are no glaring issues (like any used car purchase), and diagnose anything that needs looking at. I'm prepared to do all the work on it myself with something like the John Muir guidebook and the vast quantity of online resources on the 22r.

The camper part is indeed a blank slate as you mentioned, but that's something I see as a positive honestly. I've been wanting to do something like a van conversion for a long time anyway.

I'm only worried about the truck being in worse mechanical condition than the owner lets on, and knowing what to look for. Scott gave some good advice on questions to ask but I'd probably still want to pay a mechanic to check it out.

Link to post
Share on other sites

some folks recommend to never flush the trans. just change the fluid. flushing a old trans can cause it to fail by plugging it up with all the loosened sludge. then you have to rebuild what was a    werking trans.

Link to post
Share on other sites

You can’t be an “armchair quarterback “ on this. Contact the seller, go look at the vehicle and give it a test drive. If you’re still interested find a local mechanic that will check the vehicle out for you. It’s a 35 year old truck. I doubt it’s going to be issue free. The 22R is pretty bulletproof. If there’s going to be a problem it will be the transmission. Also check the frame rails for rot. Little surface rust is expected. Rot should be a deal breaker.

Edited by fred heath
Link to post
Share on other sites

The entire propane system has been removed, all of the fridges worked on electric so the outlet would be there but they also used propane (far better system) Trans is not an issue because it is not an automatic. The 22R was a bulletproof engine it had a double roller timing chain most 22RE's by 150K needed a chain those two things are important. However can you live without heat, hot water or a fridge? Kind of sounds like this thing is still a work in progress with a long way to go.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Good catch Tim on the transmission. Don’t know why I assumed it was automatic. Just always pictured those rigs as automatic.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

×
×
  • Create New...