Servicing your bongo in the lower mainland BC, canadians?

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Re: Servicing your bongo in the lower mainland BC, canadians?

Post by scanner » Sat May 28, 2016 11:19 am

I entirely agree with Mike - that one fault alone is the worst possible fault to be found, as he says there is no good reason whatsoever for the coolant reservoir being empty and certainly not for the vehicle to be run for any length of time with it empty. Indeed I'm surprised it appears that Instamek have driven it for some distance like that.

I would certainly want a totally ironclad warranty that ANY fault with the engine in the first 12 months would either be corrected by a rebuilt engine or by return of the vehicle for a full refund.

I would also want the matter of the "Cruise control" and "remote start" fitments fully clarified - as I must say Instamek's attention to detail needs some examination if their spelling is anything to go by.

PS Thinking about it - I'm even more surprised a responsible/knowledgeable seller would allow a vehicle to be inspected and tested in that condition.
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Re: Servicing your bongo in the lower mainland BC, canadians?

Post by Northern Bongolow » Sat May 28, 2016 12:29 pm

mctacoslayer wrote: I was looking at this one..

http://www.velocitycars.ca/vehicle/1996 ... go/966?s=1

10k canadian is about 5200 pounds...

so tempting!

Cheers!

tac
the brake pedal rubber is a little worn for that mileage. ask the garage to give the coolant system a pressure test, this may show up any leaks etc.
keep both eyes open mate and listen to your inner self, or the wife. :)
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Re: Servicing your bongo in the lower mainland BC, canadians?

Post by mctacoslayer » Sat May 28, 2016 4:49 pm

Great advice, thanks again. very helpful when rationalizing such an important decision. I want a vehicle I can travel across canada with!

I can't see purchasing this bongo without an ironclad warranty on the engine as suggested by scanner, a proper pressure check of the cooling system, and possibly withholding a substantial amount for 6 months pending the engine proving itself as suggested by mike, even then I'm not sure, but I don't mind walking away from this one and wait for another.

would the dealer meeting these requirements be satisfactory? or would you still walk away from this one...

cheers!

T
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Re: Servicing your bongo in the lower mainland BC, canadians?

Post by Diplomat » Sat May 28, 2016 9:24 pm

mctacoslayer wrote: I want a vehicle I can travel across Canada with!
Hopefully in it and not in front of it sitting in the tow truck!


Sadly, I think there are going to be plenty of North American spec vans far more suitable for the job than a Bongo.

You could be asking a lot from an old vehicle which needs knowing inside out by its owner/driver. Do you really want to experience your Bongo learning curve whilst making a committed journey? Whereas most might be concerned by the particular Bongo you have in mind, I am concerned that any Bongo might not be a wise choice.

I remain very hard to convince that driving something designed for the other side of the road won't bring a lot of disadvantages, unless you are hell bent on being different. You do know that the lighting and wiper stalks won't be on the sides you are used to, as well as the steering wheel and the sliding door?

'Horses for courses' comes to mind and my opinion is that Bongos are best for the market they were built for and particularly great for the UK drivers who can remember where their column controls used to be.

I met a man in Tobago who had retired back there after living his working life in the States. He took his Ford day van back with him, maybe to show off, which attracted punitive import duty and gives him everything on the wrong side but a different vehicle from everybody else. He would be spoilt for choice with imported Japanese vehicles built for right hand drive. Surely Canada must be bursting with suitable U.S. and German built vans?

Which is more important, the unusual vehicle or the journey?
mctacoslayer wrote: I want a vehicle I can travel across Canada with!

Frank
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Re: Servicing your bongo in the lower mainland BC, canadians?

Post by mctacoslayer » Sun May 29, 2016 5:40 am

Diplomat,

Can't say I disagree with you, especially since it would be so difficult to service here if I do encounter issues. Maybe when the market for them matures here then that would be alright. The cost is whats soooo appealing about the bongo, as if I find I don't use it as often as I thought I would then I'm not out much. If I do love it, then an upgrade to a proper conversion might be something I would consider ie.

http://gtrv.com/models

a quick search of VW's in my hood gives me this...

http://www.kijiji.ca/b-british-columbia ... ?origin=rs

so expensive.....

the van camper market here is quite small, as most canadians opt for a larger 5th wheel or similar RV. those of us crammed in Vancouver don't have that option, so I see loads of VW's and Delicas, and quite a few stealth cargo vans.

the dealer for the bongo offered a full warranty 2 years through some third party via a company here called lubrico...more research needed to see if I'm actually covered if something bad happens :)

T
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Re: Servicing your bongo in the lower mainland BC, canadians?

Post by helen&tony » Sun May 29, 2016 5:59 am

Hi
I would say that I agree with Frank (Diplomat)...plenty of American vehicles are available which fit the bill....BUT...Bongos are in use in a variety of countries where long journeys are likely...Russia and Australia for example...the Russian owners do some very long trips, and a fair number of owners are based around Moscow....Try contacting Dmitri at their club http://www.microb.ru ....he drove his over to us in Bulgaria for a meet...nice guy....he'd be the one to ask whether the Bongo does a long journey. Have you thought about "de-mountable" campers?...that way you get an every-day driver and a get-away vehicle...America, Italy, and Australia have some great trucks! ....BUT, if you find Bongo ownership is an itch that you must scratch, then I think you need to find one with a REALLY good low-mileage , from importers in the UK with a superb reputation, freshly imported ,and BIMTA guaranteed mileage, and THEN factor in the cost of importing, and replacing the whole cooling system...radiator, hoses, metal piping , and waterpump if you're thinking of crossing Canada....then I think you won't have any reliability concerns...AND you should have an awful lot of fun
Regarding import, it may be worth looking at " half container" costs .
Cheers
Helen
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Re: Servicing your bongo in the lower mainland BC, canadians?

Post by mikeonb4c » Sun May 29, 2016 11:01 am

Given there is documentation attesting to the mileage, i think we should assume its genuine. In any case diesel Bongos handle high mileage fine and condition is what matters. Shame there's no pics of the underside but i assume its rust free? Get it thoroughly waxoyled asap. Are the seats / interior as grubby as they appear? As long as no tears etc a decent valet should sort that. Is there any matting of the paintwork - silver ones are prone to it.

The big issue is that engine. The system needs refilling and BLEEDING AS PER BONGO METHOD. You've done the dealer a favour identifying that and he's got to do it regardless. Once done i'd be expecting rad fans not to be coming on much. I think you need a promisary note signed by the dealer and not just an outsourced warranty with small print. But the price is probably rather cheaper than you'd pay in uk and if you go in prepared for the worst you might even be lucky and it doesn't happen. And a 4wd Bongo will be agile, compact and able for all you want to do - they're a pretty nice drive and better than some of the lumbering offerings out there. Do you have a good local mechanic/garage who could fix it when it needs it? Do Bongos like this come along often? Half of me is tempted by it, risk and all.
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Re: Servicing your bongo in the lower mainland BC, canadians?

Post by mctacoslayer » Mon May 30, 2016 3:41 am

Test drove the Bongo again...love it! but the heat wasn't working, so when I looked in the header tank, still empty. I drove 20k with it empty. sigh. I was shocked they didn't even fill it, knowing I was going to drive it again.

anyways heres a video of the bongo in action

https://youtu.be/ijQXW9sngy4

and some pics

https://goo.gl/photos/pnu37FXyYH2x34dr5

there was still some water in the system, I felt it going into the rad. The header tank definitely had some corrosion/rust in it. the fan was working hard :). the vehicle drives really nice, all the electronics work, wife/kid love it. shame. anyways its been a learning experience, and I'll keep researching and learning, bongo or otherwise :)
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Re: Servicing your bongo in the lower mainland BC, canadians?

Post by mikeonb4c » Mon May 30, 2016 10:06 am

Well you've learned a lot. I wonder if the dealer intends to try and fill and bleed the system properly. If only he'd knock $2500 off the price you could get the cooling system (and the head, if it goes) overhauled yourself. Fancy being cheeky and making him an offer? :wink:

He shouldn't be selling it to anyone without at least refilling and bleeding the system. There seemed to be a lot of red lights on tbe dash also. Two are seat belt and door but can't immediately think what the others are. Did you test the roof was raising and lowering properly?
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Re: Servicing your bongo in the lower mainland BC, canadians?

Post by scanner » Mon May 30, 2016 3:30 pm

mikeonb4c wrote:He shouldn't be selling it to anyone without at least refilling and bleeding the system.
He shouldn't even be SHOWING it to anyone in that condition let alone allowing them to drive it.

The guy clearly knows (or cares) little about Bongos.
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