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Hi all. Looking at changing to a 2017 Sterling Elite 565 that’s for sale privately for £19500 which in current times is good. However it missed last years service and was only used once due to covid. I’m going to have a hood poke over it and take my damp meter but are there any issues to note. It has Alde wet heating. I know this was only the second year they used the new Swift HT construction with timberless build so anything to note on that front? I’m not too worried about the accessories as if any of them are broken it’s something that can be fixed. 
 

my current van is a 2002 Sterling which until recently had been very good but stuff is starting to need fixing every trip now and we are imminently expecting two kids so the twin rear bed setup is a must for us.

 

Any advice on this model would be gratefully received.

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Huge fan of the old Swift Smart HT cracking build and tech with no damp to worry about..... BUT they (some) did have problems that you need to keep an eye out for;

 

1. Panel delamination (look for odd bumps and bulges inside and out inc roof)

2. Floor strength, just ensure floor feels solid, no spongy bits visually inspect underneath too for delamination  

3. Front and rear panel cracks - repairable and maybe cosmetic but I’d still check 

 

The big issue and warning buying private is fraud, check, check, check and check again and part with nothing until you are next to the van (having checked again 😊).... CRiS check also essential. 

 

There are also minor irritations but they would not stop me buying, things like the command control of the fridge was troublesome in 2017, LED rear lights may have water inside and so on.
 

Such a shame a 2017 van has missed a service loosing the body shell warranty for its final 2 years.

 

Good luck! 

Cheers, Martin

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Hi, I have a 2017 Stirling Elite 560 which I consider to be the best van I've had. (and I used to work in the industry including Swift) The bonded construction used is second to none! Having said that, the floor on mine had to be replaced due to a 100mm x 400mm dent in the kitchen area, I won't go into the cause of it but suffice it to say that the internal substrate used in production now, has been changed. I have heard of some 'vans leaking around around the panoramic roof light and water getting into the rear lights, all of which are covered by warranty although on the 'van that you're looking at will unfortunately be void. Get a professional  to take a good look at it before you buy!

I have done a number of custom improvements on mine that don't affect it's warranty so if you do buy this 'van, give me a shout and I'll send you the details'

Good luck.

Keith

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On 15/05/2021 at 16:25, Pembssurfer said:

However it missed last years service and was only used once due to

Does that not mean it is out of Swift warranty? If so I'd want a big discount compared to dealer price...

 

Our Swift last year had a replacement rear panel at 5 years (5k if no warranty) and now year 6 has the bulkhead detachment.

 

Forking out 20k I'd want a pukka warranty...

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Well Iv bought the van. £19000 and it’s like new. Unfortunately previous owners husband had passed away suddenly last year. All the bells and whistles including the solar panel and tracker and what not. Got a vango Vallkara 2 air awning chucked in as well as Milenco hitch lock, wheel lock, water carries, leisure battery and 2 propane bottles.  I damped checked it all and highest reading was 7% and CRiS check came back all legit and the family were lovely too. No buyers remorse what do ever. It was only used twice by first owners in 2018 who trade it in for a car then present owners used it a few times in 2019 before he fell ill and then it wasn’t used much at all last year. In most respects it’s a new van. There is a very slight raise in the floor that’s a few inches wide in the kitchen area but not soft so to speak and looks and feels like just the lino floor bulging. 
 

The only minor defects Iv found is the sunroof blind catches on some rubber strip in the sunroof that’s unstuck from the roof light. The other thing is the ALDE heating header tank somehow leaks out the top when travelling despite the service history showing it was repaired last service. Only a few drops but still. Is this a common problem? Also how the heck does the Sargent alarm work?

1 minute ago, P101 said:

Does that not mean it is out of Swift warranty? If so I'd want a big discount compared to dealer price...

 

Our Swift last year had a replacement rear panel at 5 years (5k if no warranty) and now year 6 has the bulkhead detachment.

 

Forking out 20k I'd want a pukka warranty...

Dealer price is currently 24-25k and I paid £19k

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Hello

 

i hear they have gone back to wooden floor inner on all Swift now?   Smart 3?

 

 

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2 minutes ago, djadria said:

Hello

 

i hear they have gone back to wooden floor inner on all Swift now?   Smart 3?

 

 

 

Just found this out. https://www.swiftgroup.co.uk/coronavirus/
 

this could be my saving grace due to warranty being missed. Il phone up tomorrow and check dates.

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Posted (edited)

See my reply on your similar (other) question I don't believe your van is Smart HT construction and as such you need to make sure the recall was properly carried out.

 

My van was carted off this week on the  caravan ambulance just before the body and chassis finally parted company!!!!

 

 

32 minutes ago, Pembssurfer said:

 

Just found this out. https://www.swiftgroup.co.uk/coronavirus/
 

this could be my saving grace due to warranty being missed. Il phone up tomorrow and check dates.

If you're planning on phoning Swift I doubt you'll get through.

 

Try emailing

 

crm@swiftleisure.co.uk

 

And include the CRiS number of your van. They tend to respond within 2 or 3 days.

Edited by P101
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Posted (edited)
22 minutes ago, P101 said:

See my reply on your similar (other) question I don't believe your van is Smart HT construction and as such you need to make sure the recall was properly carried out.

 

My van was carted off this week on the  caravan ambulance just before the body and chassis finally parted company!!!!

 

IMG_20210511_104322.jpg

If you're planning on phoning Swift I doubt you'll get through.

 

Try emailing

 

crm@swiftleisure.co.uk

 

And include the CRiS number of your van. They tend to respond within 2 or 3 days.

100% it’s SMART HT. it was only available on the Elite line from 2016. https://www.swifttv.co.uk/project/step-into-the-2017-sterling-elite-caravan/

 

https://www.swifttv.co.uk/project/2017-swift-caravans-news/

 

swift’s own recall also states it does not effect SMART HT builds. I did look in front locker and bulkhead and there are no screws in the construction and everything looks true and fair. Are Swift sorting your bulkhead issue out for you?

Edited by Pembssurfer
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7 hours ago, Pembssurfer said:

Also how the heck does the Sargent alarm work?

Alarm manual link here - its very crude! another slight word of warning on that front come had faulty tilt sensors (batch issue) so if you keep getting false alarms I am sure Sargent will assist.

 

FWIW - I agree NOT part of the recall (Smart HT)

 

7 hours ago, Pembssurfer said:

The other thing is the ALDE heating header tank somehow leaks out the top when travelling

That is is usually as simple as overfilling, is it full when cold? We had a couple of reports over on Swift Talk of the top air pipe simply running onto the floor and NOT been drilled through the floor at the factory!! easy fix tho.

 

.....anyway, congratulations, hope it serves you well - lovely van!! :D

 

Don't forget to register for Swift Command and get playing!! - link here

Check the firmware of command is the latest, I'd give Sargent a call on that front they may help you if not (only really important if you want the fridge functionality, it may have already been physically disconnected)

 

 

Cheers, Martin

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7 hours ago, djadria said:

Hello

 

i hear they have gone back to wooden floor inner on all Swift now?   Smart 3?

 

 

Not true, the flagship Elegance still has a composite floor - completely timberless construction and a lifetime water ingress warranty

Cheers, Martin

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1 hour ago, MartinJB said:

Alarm manual link here - its very crude! another slight word of warning on that front come had faulty tilt sensors (batch issue) so if you keep getting false alarms I am sure Sargent will assist.

 

FWIW - I agree NOT part of the recall (Smart HT)

 

That is is usually as simple as overfilling, is it full when cold? We had a couple of reports over on Swift Talk of the top air pipe simply running onto the floor and NOT been drilled through the floor at the factory!! easy fix tho.

 

.....anyway, congratulations, hope it serves you well - lovely van!! :D

 

Don't forget to register for Swift Command and get playing!! - link here

Check the firmware of command is the latest, I'd give Sargent a call on that front they may help you if not (only really important if you want the fridge functionality, it may have already been physically disconnected)

 

 

Thanks for the helpful info Martin. Off to download the app now. Will it work over 4G so we can set heating when we are out?

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11 minutes ago, Pembssurfer said:

Thanks for the helpful info Martin. Off to download the app now. Will it work over 4G so we can set heating when we are out?

You may have to pay the subscription (its free for 3 years then £40/60/75 for 1/2/3 years respectively) which basically provides airtime for the SIM in the caravan so it can communicate (subject to coverage).

Yes you can then remote control many features including the heating.

 

Cheers, Martin

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2 hours ago, MartinJB said:

Not true, the flagship Elegance still has a composite floor - completely timberless construction and a lifetime water ingress warranty

 Having drilled through the floor, walls and roof of our 2019 Elegance as part of extensive modifications I can confirm first hand that there is no wood used in the body construction (apart from the front locker floor - which is easy to replace should it ever be needed).

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I'm  a bit confused - current elegance brochure states:

 

• SMART 3 - the third generation of totally timberless SMART caravan construction featuring a revolutionary floor construction and comes with a lifetime water ingress warranty*: - Strong, moisture proof ‘PURe’ polyurethane timber-less framed body shell with polystyrene insulation core (22mm in sidewalls, 28mm in roof) - Robust balanced panel side walls with GRP outer and inner skin - 45mm ‘sandwich’ floor construction with GRP outer skin, ply upper and high rigidity Styrofoam core - SRIM corner jointing system - Hail resistant exterior GRP roof, fully bonded for extra strength and flatness? 

 

I wonder if this is a printing error or whether they have gone back to the upper ply on floor?

 

2021_Elegance.indd (bdci.co.uk)

 

Page 18?

 

DJ

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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53 minutes ago, djadria said:

I'm  a bit confused - current elegance brochure states:

 

• SMART 3 - the third generation of totally timberless SMART caravan construction featuring a revolutionary floor construction and comes with a lifetime water ingress warranty*: - Strong, moisture proof ‘PURe’ polyurethane timber-less framed body shell with polystyrene insulation core (22mm in sidewalls, 28mm in roof) - Robust balanced panel side walls with GRP outer and inner skin - 45mm ‘sandwich’ floor construction with GRP outer skin, ply upper and high rigidity Styrofoam core - SRIM corner jointing system - Hail resistant exterior GRP roof, fully bonded for extra strength and flatness? 

 

I wonder if this is a printing error or whether they have gone back to the upper ply on floor?

 

2021_Elegance.indd (bdci.co.uk)

 

Page 18?

 

DJ

Yeah typo I think - here it is from the specs:

 

SMART 3 construction – the third generation of totally timberless SMART caravan construction featuring a revolutionary floor construction and comes with a lifetime water ingress warranty*;

Strong, moisture proof 'PURe' polyurethane timberless framed bodyshell with polystyrene insulation core (22mm in sidewalls, 28mm in roof)

Robust GRP inner and outer balanced side walls

45mm 'sandwich' floor construction with GRP inner and outer skins, and engineered structural foam core

SRIM corner jointing system

Hail resistant exterior GRP roof, fully bonded for extra strength and flatness

Cheers, Martin

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2 minutes ago, MartinJB said:

Yeah typo I think - here it is from the specs:

 

SMART 3 construction – the third generation of totally timberless SMART caravan construction featuring a revolutionary floor construction and comes with a lifetime water ingress warranty*;

Strong, moisture proof 'PURe' polyurethane timberless framed bodyshell with polystyrene insulation core (22mm in sidewalls, 28mm in roof)

Robust GRP inner and outer balanced side walls

45mm 'sandwich' floor construction with GRP inner and outer skins, and engineered structural foam core

SRIM corner jointing system

Hail resistant exterior GRP roof, fully bonded for extra strength and flatness

Thanks for that - what is the general opinion of the current Elegance build - thinking of coming over from Bailey to Elegance - but a little worried about the noise about bulkhead issues and floor to walls coming apart?

 

TA

 

 

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5 minutes ago, djadria said:

Thanks for that - what is the general opinion of the current Elegance build - thinking of coming over from Bailey to Elegance - but a little worried about the noise about bulkhead issues and floor to walls coming apart?

 

TA

The bulkhead issue was quite specific and as soon as it was identified a recall implemented and production rectified. 

 

It seems with nearly all makes you do take somewhat of a gamble that there "may" be problems - at least with Elegance you can rest assured the lifetime body shell warranty will give a great deal of peace of mind for things like delamination and ingress and also that, IMHO, Swift customer services are pretty good, as are suppliers to Swift like Sargent.

Cheers, Martin

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Thanks I do fancy the Elegance 565 - but hope they do a Grande version soon 👍

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Not sure if you are looking at new, but I think the lifetime guarantee is only given to the original buyer.

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From my limited few days experience with the Sterling and the SMART HT il fully convinced it’s the most solid caravan design Iv seen so far. And the thought of even if there is a leak in the future that all I have to do is seal it and stick a dehumidifier in  is a wonder to behold. That being said I am paying a weight penalty for it.

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Enjoy 😉 

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21 hours ago, MartinJB said:

Yeah typo I think - here it is from the specs:

 

SMART 3 construction – the third generation of totally timberless SMART caravan construction featuring a revolutionary floor construction and comes with a lifetime water ingress warranty*;

Strong, moisture proof 'PURe' polyurethane timberless framed bodyshell with polystyrene insulation core (22mm in sidewalls, 28mm in roof)

Robust GRP inner and outer balanced side walls

45mm 'sandwich' floor construction with GRP inner and outer skins, and engineered structural foam core

SRIM corner jointing system

Hail resistant exterior GRP roof, fully bonded for extra strength and flatness

Hi Martin,

 

All this is really confusing with what seems like subtle changes to design / build each year and moreso with the naming.

 

Is Smart 3 very similar to Smart HT and it seems now only the Elegance is built that way.

 

I can't figure out how Swift can support very different construction techniques. Do you think they will all merge again with a single build methodology or might the Elegance disappear due to whatever reasons Smart HT or 3 hasn't been all consuming??

 

 

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1 minute ago, P101 said:

Hi Martin,

 

All this is really confusing with what seems like subtle changes to design / build each year and moreso with the naming.

 

Is Smart 3 very similar to Smart HT and it seems now only the Elegance is built that way.

 

I can't figure out how Swift can support very different construction techniques. Do you think they will all merge again with a single build methodology or might the Elegance disappear due to whatever reasons Smart HT or 3 hasn't been all consuming??

Swift's basic construction method is now the same across all ranges, it's only Elegance that has the added feature of the composite floor (timber free). 

 

Smart HT was a brilliant construction method but was dropped in 2019, my personal view is weight and complexity (simplified production process for the factory) and maybe cost.

 

Remember a lot of this is marketing blurb now - but in very simple terms all of Swift are now built with SMART construction and Elegance gets a composite floor added, they are all put together essentially the same tho.

Cheers, Martin

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35 minutes ago, MartinJB said:

Swift's basic construction method is now the same across all ranges, it's only Elegance that has the added feature of the composite floor (timber free). 

 

Smart HT was a brilliant construction method but was dropped in 2019, my personal view is weight and complexity (simplified production process for the factory) and maybe cost.

 

Remember a lot of this is marketing blurb now - but in very simple terms all of Swift are now built with SMART construction and Elegance gets a composite floor added, they are all put together essentially the same tho.

Ok so that's a bit clearer. Same build but composite or wooden floor.

 

Do you know if all the components are glued together with construction adhesive or do these use components bolted together a bit like the Bailey's? Or maybe they still use glue and screws???

 

Am curious as our Swift has just undergone the bulkhead repair and last year was a replacement rear panel. Wonder whether to replace it. Could be that we've now endured all the likely failures and will have a van which will last.

 

Or we could switch to a newer one and find out 5 years down the line that the construction adhesive didn't prove as reliable as expected!!!!!

Decisions decisions decisions...

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