Every now and again, we comment about the "do's" and don'ts" of such things as decorating and upgrading a vintage caravan in an individual caravan thread (not talking about conversion to commercial use here).
I have had a love affair with vintage caravans since 1999, well before this site even started. I am currently on my fifth vintage caravan renovation/restoration. Since the site began, we have had good, healthy, sometime rather "boisterous" debates about things like curtain materials, linos, lighting (both interior and exterior) and even types of screws to use.
I know there are many enthusiasts here who have to be "period perfect" in all things. But to what extreme does one go? That will vary from person to person. But I want to remind you that the original people who owned these vans quite often didn't give two hoots about such things. In fact, what was more important to them was that the decorating/revamp etc was "NEW" and "MODERN", appropriate to the year in which the reno was done. At times, they upgraded such things as tail-lights etc in the interest of safety. I admit that sometimes it was done AWFULLY (but that's my view, not theirs). I think this gives us "permission" to do likewise!
My view is not to be too hung up about being so period perfect. Sure, whenever possible, retain the original, especially if it ain't broken. But when something is so damaged as to be irreparable, or is simply worn out, and cannot be found again, then surely it's OK to find something with which to replace it, and is sympathetic to the period, without being of the period.
This is why I had no compunction about adding modern touches to my previous vans. To my mind, they weren't "in your face" and would probably have been made by the manufacturer if he was still trading. For example, very few people realised that when they were sitting in my Propert, the back-rest they were leaning against actually had a 60 litre water tank inside it. Not even my friend "cobber" will ever notice that there are almost 400 Phillips head screws in the Rowvan roof that I replaced!
So if you can't find the exact period lino or curtain material, there are alternatives that don't scream "inappropriate"! Don't feel guilty about using them, because so often, the previous owners did exactly the same thing, because they WANTED to do that.
I'm sure that this will cause debate, but that's fine, that's why they call this a forum!
Last Edit: Feb 3, 2017 5:51:54 GMT 10 by Roehm3108
I read your post with enthusiasm & totally agree with safety & practicality, while trying to keep the period correct. The hidden water tank is a great example. Modern day traffic has no tolerance for a single tiny taillight & faded indicators.
Since my short time here I have seen quiet a few posts where members start with badly deteriorated vans, start stripping, post a few images & disappear?? I wonder if they get embarrassed that the job is too big, beyond their capability OR they don't think it will be seen as period correct.
The reaction from the SW Rocks Nationals open day was something I have never experienced from the public, hard to explain but 100% of them were just thrilled we were keeping the Vintage & Classics alive, mostly it bought back great childhood memories.
I think the forum is a great source of info & fellowship, but just a little more flexibility, may encourage a lot more action.
Last Edit: Oct 14, 2016 19:13:40 GMT 10 by Mustang