I walk by this old contraption often and have long waited for a fitting time to post a quickie. Is it just me, or does this look about as stable as the stock market? And Oregon is a windy place…
Can anyone top(ple) this? Post it in the comments.
Winnebago Brave, I believe. I’m not sure of the year but I think it’s from the cretaceous period.
I wanted you to know that I lol’d significantly.
Me too. Now my wife thinks I’m nuts.
+1. Late 1960s model, repainted to cover the Flying W on its side.
There a heavy truck chassis under that so it would be quite stable despite the looks
Stable, ha! I believe these, like many RVs, were built atop Chevy P-30 truck chassis, but they’re built of particle board and 2x4s over minimal steel framing. It’s a structural nightmare.
And the P-30 at highway speed is truly a horrifying experience, with vague steering and a tendency to wander.
You can’t believe what a white-knuckle ride these things are at speed.
Early Winnebagos used Dodge chassis.
Oh, well that’s actually worse than the P30.
All the structural integrity of a wet tissue box, I bet!
Except the Brave, which was built on a Ford chassis with a 300ci six puttting out all of 150 net hp.
Love that engine. Early versions of the Clark Cortez motorhome had six cylinder power (some Ford, some Mopar), along with 4 speed manual FWD transaxles. Structurally far superior to the Winnebago model which proved so profitable.
I was actually seeking an early Clark Cortez when I stumbled into my Revcon and went for that instead.
Oops, meant to post this one. These are the Clark Cortez, the Revcon is my avatar. 🙂
Btrig, I recently found a Revcon, but I can’t find a Cortez, yet anyway. Such an awesome RV; used to be one around.
The Revcons seem to have a pretty high survival rate. There’s a yahoo group called Revcon Curious, which has a pretty active mailing list with quite a few knowledgeable people willing to share experience and parts sources.
The Cortez seems to be a lot more rare, especially the early ones.
I thought that was a Travco. Friend of mine’s dad owned one, and it was fantabulous.
There were definitely some pretty cool RVs built on the Dodge chassis. Travco and I think Sport Coach or SportsCoach (?) were pretty sharp, and built of fiberglass over a steel frame for lighter weight.
The Revcon is aluminum, and at 25.5 ft long and around 4400 lbs (unladen, mine’s probably more like 5800 lbs in traveling condition) it’s actually not that much larger or heavier than its Toronado donor. It’s the only motorhome I’ve ever driven that could be described as “overpowered”. It’s shockingly easy to cruise at 90 mph without realizing it.
The underpins are equal to any period Milk or Bread Van.
Nice short wheelbase so you can knock stuff over with the swinging rear end if you try to turn sharply. Almost like an HMS Titanic of motorhomes.
The long rear overhang seems to have been a characteristic of most motorhomes, not just the shorties like this one. It’s so short that it may well be more stable in crosswinds than the more typical longer rigs. I must say that the aerodynamics of that compartment above the windshield would have to be weird.
We in Aotearoa are allowed to build 3 meters overhang behind the rear axle or in the case of bogie drive rear axis this is for truck decks or van bodies like this 3m x2.5m wide is a lot of floor area. The windage on this would be considerable but if your scared of it dont drive it Ive driven van body trucks far worse aerodynamicly than this and NZ is bloody windy just ask the makers of wind turbines that get wrecked here
MY point was most of the weight is low down a bit of sway never hurt anyone, then again I dont scare easy
Overall length on these brutes was 240 inches in the early years. Others know more, but that wasn’t too much longer than an early 70s deVille – perhaps a foot or so?
We get terrible wind gusts around here and I really didn’t like driving our old Bronco II on the highway so I can’t imagine this thing.
Bronco is a stability nightmare full stop this thing has a wide track and real weight on the bottom to hold it down, Compared to an unladen curtainsider truck this would be a cruise to drive. Ive seen the rev counter spike in an unladen 6 wheeler in crosswinds over twice the sail area of that camper.
I’ve seen a few of these through the years, but then I believe there’s a Ford Transit Connect RV conversion, too! David, meet Goliath!
I’m signing off for a few days, going out of town to St. Louis to visit family and friends.
Probably be back Monday evening! Road trip!
Winnebago is using the Sprinter for some conversions these days.
The Sprinter would be ok I’d think.
When I was a VW Tech, we had to do warranty work on Winnebago Rialtas, which were the front of a VW Eurovan with the ass of a Winnebago.
They didn’t go crazy on the height, and if you got a later one with the 200-hp VR6, they were not bad to drive. I had many of them running 70 down the highway and it is not scary at all. Not even that bad to park.
However, Winnebago sure was sloppy where their frame matched up to the Eurovan’s stuff. Raw welds with no rust inhibitors applied after, really crappy fuel and evaporative emission hose splices. Their stuff seemed good, but they were bad at making it a clean transition to the VW stuff.
Needs appropriate commentary by “Winnebago Man” Jack Rebney . . .
I don’t need your *#$*ing advice, *#($@ucker! I write this #*$&, not you!
You know, this vehicle meets all the requirements for having been made into a character in the Cars movies – can you picture that? Mater could have just as easily been one of these (parked down by the river somewhere).
In the mid 70’s I drove a Winnebago outfitted with special radio receivers for research – it was the more normal proportioned model. It was built on a Dodge chassis. I can attest that there was very little structure above the floor – since we had to install equipment racks to hold the radio equipment. It was not exactly economical with gas.
Its only a light alloy caravan shell on a light truck Chassis the body work only keeps the rain out
“…the body work only keeps the rain out”
In fact it typically doesn’t even do that after a couple of years of aging.
Are you sure this isn’t the Green River Killers’ ride?
I googled it, and it seems like the thing was actually called a Winnebago Brave! Hmm, I guess the manufacturer really knows what kind of creature it is creating… Prospective buyers should’ve taken the hint from the name… I found a few for sale for less than $1000. Not much more than a month’s rent on an apartment, might be a good alternative to someone having a really tough time in this economic climate…
Akin to the officer’s uhhhhh “restrooms” aboard those wooden sailing ships of yore the lengthy stern with a clear shot of the asphalt ocean below that clear area may be required for the onboard toilet’s proper functioning.
Maybe that’s why people of the past despised being stuck behind these rigs back in the old days when these vehicles held up traffic so often upon the 2-lane roads so typical in vacation destinations.
Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *
Notify me of follow-up comments by email.
Notify me of new posts by email.
About Arras WordPress Theme
Copyright 2011 - 2016 Curbside Classics. All Rights Reserved.