On October 19, 2018 we purchased our 1975 GMC Motorhome Eleganza 2. I can’t believe how fast the year went, though when I think back about how we spent every weekend and most week nights working on the girl it’s no wonder the time went so quickly.
If you haven’t been following the blog since the beginning I’m going to back track a bit. We had decided on the path that retirement would take us, fulltime RV living. That seemed easy enough to decide but the ‘with what’ was overwhelming. So many choices and so much advice from those that have an RV and felt the purchase they made was the obvious choice. I get that, I tend to think the decisions I’ve made are the ‘only way to go’ also! We went to a few local RV shows and to a number of RV lots to look around and get a feel of what we would want. Of course walking into a front living fifth wheel takes your breath away, there seems to be no need to minimize or simplify with those puppies. We aren’t the impulsive type so we walked away from the rv shows with a lot of information on the RV’s specifically but we needed to figure out what our true needs and type of RV lifestyle we wanted.
We really liked the Safari Trek’s. They were built on the West Coast (home) and we liked there was no wasted space – no bedroom in the back taking up living space. We liked the Electro-magic bed in that it disappears during the day so your entire RV is living space and at night you drop it down for sleeping. Plus, the bathroom is so large! I built my entire search from then on about the size of the bathroom. It took me a while to let that go and open up to other options. Because we live in the Pacific Northwest we are very aware of the potential of water damage, whether you are traveling fulltime or living in a S&B. We toured a number of used RV’s that reeked of water damage with soft floors and walls, some we walked out of sure we were going to be ill from inhaling the hidden mold spores. This is when we started to look more heavily into the construction of the RV. We found the GMC Motorhome was constructed similarly to an Airstream with aluminum and fiberglass for the exterior.
Thanks to YouTube and Facebook, there is an abundance of information on the GMC Motorhome. We initially found Cruzin Castles and Rosie O’Kelly’s videos on their GMC purchases and the work they were putting into them. We did love the body style and of course it’s the same RV that is in the movie Stripes – a 1981 movie that everyone of a certain generation that knows Bill Murray and Harold Ramis has watched, whether they want to admit it or not! We kept an eye on Craigslist and talked to a few sellers before finding an Eleganza just a few miles away. As a long time nanny, I have a saying ‘ just for looking, not for touching’, wellllllll that didn’t last long. As soon as we pulled up we were kind of in love but we did follow the guidelines @TheFreedomTheory had mentioned. Things like, if it smells like airfreshener they are probably hiding something, push on the walls, stomp on the floor, open the windows, turn on the lights and all electricity, use all your senses to investigate and don’t think this is the only one so you better grab it quick. This may not be exactly what they said but you get the gist of it.
You have to imagine walking into an RV that was restored in the early to mid-80’s when the fashion was over sized shoulder pads and Laura Ashley fabrics – big floral prints and pink carpet, linoleum, walls and furniture. You never know if a previous owner is reading along or following on YouTube so I don’t want to disparage their choice of décor needless to say I knew immediately that we could dig in and make the interior our own without worrying we would ruin the integrity of the design.
For the month of October I am going to (attempt to) post daily about a particular change and improvement we have made to our 1975 GMC Motorhome Eleganza II . It will be fun for me to relive the moments and hopefully it will give you the courage to open a can of paint and pick a bold color that brings you joy!
#gmcmotorhome #eleganza2 #restomod #diy #semiretirment #liveyourbestlife #rvnomad #homeiswhereyouparkit #lauraashley @cruisincastles @rosieokelly #makeachange #takeachance #reachforthestars #moveitorloseit @thefreedomtheory