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Alan Stanley

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Everything posted by Alan Stanley

  1. An example why dealers get a bad name by shooting themselves in the foot. Just had my Unicorn Valencia serviced. 4 years old. No issues so set price service at a not inconsiderable sum of money. Received a call from the dealers to say the friction pads in the Alko hitch needed replacement. No problem with that. I asked for a quote and was told £63 in addition to the service charge. Now discounting the exorbitant cost of the pads themselves (approx £28 inc Vat., which they claim back ) I know that it takes just 5 mins to change them so essentially they wanted about £38 for five minutes labour in addition to the service charges. Needless to say I refused and did them myself in about 5 mins. Over the years we have spent well over £100k with them. What a wonderful way to reward customer loyalty.
  2. Plus one for the TPMS on the van. Similarly on most occasions it was obvious on car or van that the tyre had been running with low pressure and thus overheated when I attended accidents caused by tyre blow out. Those small patches of rubber in contact with the tarmac are the only things between you and death. You can have the finest tow car with the most sophisticated breaking and handling etc but it all depends on those bits of rubber.
  3. When we visited Alde last year for the fluid change we had them add an extra towel rail. the work was exemplary. They also went through their kit with a fine tooth comb. Replacing FOC the flue fan as it was noisier than they thought as acceptable. Running the van up to sauna temperature etc. to test it fully. We have not had to do so much as bleed a radiator since. Good coffee as well.
  4. Take your tape measure to a Bailey Unicorn Valencia series 3 ( possible series 4 is similar.) The Bed is in the brochure as 6ft . 2". But that is just the mattress. There is a fill in at the head end of about 3 inches, and free space at the foot end of about 4 inches. Moral never trust a caravan brochure.
  5. Ring Alde on Monday they are very good and will Talk you through various tests etc
  6. Simplest way is to ask Bailey. What is and is not included varies from maker to maker and model to model. Let us know how you get on with the new van please.
  7. So true. Many if not most people think they are buying from the Manufacturer via their agent, the dealer. Not True - The dealer buys the van from the manufacturer and then sells it to you. If you refuse it then the dealer is stuck with it unless the manufacturer accepts it back.
  8. Yes this is correct you can transfer the remaining Bailey warranty to yourself. Most important is to make sure it is a valid warranty i.e. that all the conditions re servicing etc have been complied with. See this link Page 3/4 https://www.baileyofbristol.co.uk/images/pdfs/1709_Touring Caravan Warranty Document.pdf Sorry that is wrong. Bailey have a 3 year Manufacturers warranty. With the exception of the Micro Wave and Radio everything is covered for 2 years. The third year is still comprehensive but the items are listed in the warranty. This third year is most certainly not down to the dealer. The warranty is of course in addition to your legal rights, which are down to the dealer.
  9. Quite correct well done you. You have no responsibility to accept faulty goods. That includes (a)fitness for all the purposes for which goods of that kind are usually supplied; (b)appearance and finish; (c)freedom from minor defects; (d)safety; (e)durability. Dealer needs to provide a van that fits in with these. Or refund your money.
  10. Been using this product for years. On all three Bailey vans. https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/AutoKit-5L-Waterless-Car-Wash-Cleaner-Carnauba-Wax-Body-Polish-Shield-Shine/320922555585?epid=2060338421&hash=item4ab87994c1:g:Fg4AAOSw8gVX5nAo&frcectupt=true Brilliant stuff and yes it contains carnauba wax. Works equally as well on the caravan windows or your car. But do not under any circumstances use it on the car windscreen. Not even a cloth that has been used with the Polish. You will not see where you are going when it rains.
  11. The Safefill is just a gas bottle. No such thing as a ‘Safefill Regulatir’. You just connect it straight to your gas pigtail. (Propane type) exactly like a calor bottle. if you are using an old van with the regulator attached to the gas bottle, again you just attach it (propane type) exactly the same as to a calor gas bottle
  12. In no particular order. Unicorn Valencia series 3. 1. Weight upgrade. 2. Additional solar panel input and upgraded solar controller. 3. Custom made plastic mug holders and cutlery tray. 4. Converting bottle cupboard to custom glasses storage. 5. Converted 'shoe cupboard inside the door under bunk to 'Shoe drawer' (looks the same but a pull out drawer now.) 6. Turned Plate rack 90 deg. 7. Custom storage for after market draining board. 8. Additional shelves for some overhead lockers. (I use off cuts of polycarbon sheeting.) 9. Shelf upstands for Bathroom wall storage. 10. Shelf for Ice Box to allow ice cube tray to fit under and frozen food above it. (Still got three for sale.) 11. Custom travelling bottle storage. (Use bailey cup wire cup holders screwed into odd corners) 12. Microwave removed and matching door fitted to make another locker in kitchen. 13. Ikea drawer trays fitted to front drawer ( cost pennies and fit a treat.) 14. Auto change over valve for gas. 15 Mods to gas storage to fit 'Safefill' 16. Fire extinguisher and blanket. 17. Motor mover. 18. Upgraded status aerial control box. 19. Moved bowl holder. 20. 'Push to work' magnetic catches to some cupboards/lockers. (they make for secure travel but are not in use on site) None of which are designed to add any bling. They all make use or packing for travel easier.
  13. These are the fittings I referred to. https://www.penrosetouring.co.uk/isabella-isalink-storm-guys.html Available from many outlets. Last year we were with friends on the top of Plymouth Sound when a westerly gale was forecast, and arrived. Both with Magnum awnings. The difference they made was so marked that suffice to say both awnings finished up fitted. Instead of normal guy ropes I used some 'shock cord' available from a local boat chandler. Plenty of give and takes up no space at all. Cost of just a couple of £ from their 'gash bin'. We just thread a length through them and 'zig zag' it down to a few pegs, when we think strong winds are in the offing.
  14. If you look at most Isabella awnings you will sea little white tabs just under the windows. For a few £s Isabella will sell you the ‘iso tab’ fittings for these. You then run electric cord through them as additional paging points. The give in the elastic takes all the flapping out of the walls in strong winds. Thus reducing the banging and jerking. The difference they make is amazing Also the little rubber ‘zip tab covers’. Stops the jingle of the zips. Two of the best tips given me by the Isabella staff.
  15. There is a saying in business. ‘Quality is free’. It is in Isabella awnings absolutely bomb proof, just look closely at the construction and materials. by far the best spares and accessory / add ons range The relaxation that comes from confidence in the design and construction Simple to erect Buy it, use it for years and years and it will still fetch good money.
  16. Our perception as well Gordon. We were there three days. Speaking to various small exhibitors they claimed increase in stand prices were just greed and the lack of the temporary camp site came as a major blow to some. Certainly foot fall was lower the days we were there. Mind you I say that each year and each year they claim higher.
  17. Have you considered the Isabella magnum 400. It’s 4 meters by 2.5 deep. It is very easy to erect and will transfer to different vans. For when you want more room then an annex is easily got on eBay. There are always some for sale. Either the ‘tall’ annex which is roomy but a big lump. Or the future ‘ annex’. Not so big but only one pole and a few pegs. It it will also take a sun shade on the front that doubles as a throw up sun/rain canopy on the van for short stays.
  18. For what it’s worth we have a factory fitted truma 100w on the roof on our Bailey. Works a treat in good weather etc. To top up capacity I purchased a 60 w folder and wired both to a 30 amp controller. If we find the 100 w is coping fine. If not out comes the folder and it plugs into the van. Our controller shows the amps amps going to the battery. In winter the 60 w pointed at the sun generates substantially more ( often x2 or greater). Than the roof mounted 100 w. Ditto parked unde trees etc. A simple and flexible system. I did consider anotheroof mounted 100 w on the roof and ditching the folder, until I saw the output of the 60 pointed at a low sun in Dec. Jan. etc
  19. If you ring them tyre pal are usually very good over the phone and if going to the NEC they may well have a stand where you can Talk to 'Richard' I find it hard to believe that all the batteries would go flat at the same time. Possible yes but unlikely. I don't claim any expertise in the system other than having one for about 5 years. My Batteries go flat in no order or pattern and certainly not all together. I would try registering the sensors again with the head unit. To see if the sensors are still registered correctly. Also check to see if they are still there or indeed have any batteries in them. I've know stranger things stolen before now.
  20. When I find one it will go to the top of the tree, The Alde system that includes under floor heating is better but at present I would not consider the british manufactured vans with it fitted.
  21. When going from Our Valencia to other makes of van in hot weather I can't say that I've noticed any great heat gain from the window. But then they have various versions of roof light and lights above the conventional window that probably add up to about the same amount of plastic. In the summer when the sun is high the front windows are presenting an almost vertical design so I doubt much solar gain. In the winter when the sun is low we have noticed it makes a very good solar gain and it is surprising the temperature that is maintained without any heating kicking in. Certainly the Unicorn 3 is the best we have ever had to date. The blinds fitted are very good so keeping the sun out is easy of you wish. When we have the first van with it I did wonder about both heat loss and excessive gain and would it result in condensation and or the potential for water leak round the opening window, or cold spots near it. None of these has occurred. The triple seal fitted has been 100% perfect. Bailey have heating vents along the base of the three front windows a bit like your car windscreen. This being possible because of the 'no front locker' I suppose. Anyway it works. It is without doubt a styling thing that some hate. Their choice, but it is the only design in over 50 years of this caravaning thing where we have uninterrupted view out when stood up. Most of us choose vans in showroom type conditions. You really need to be in the great outdoors and actually living in the thing to get a real feel for it. The other manufacturers window and window above all have some sort of support between the two. This is exactly on the eye line of SWIMBO which she hates. She has two 'Divorce' options as she calls them. 1. Must have Alde heating. 2. Must have the big window. Until another manufacturer comes up with this formula my choice is easy.
  22. The video test has been updated more than once as each model was introduced. The mk 1. (We had one) had a bathroom that some thought needed some extra heat. Never bothered us. But the current vans are far far from the mark 1. Warm up up from cold is now about 1/2 what it was I the mark 1. and they have worked closely with Alde to achieve the best installation and circulation. ( source Alde ). I did ask if all uk manufacturers did likewise. Reply from Alde. “ I wish ! Bailey do. Continental makers do. As for other UK makers. No comment. ( this was two years ago) maybe things have changed. We have had a heated towel rail (additional) fitted in the mk3. Not because of cold but SWMBO likes fluffy hot towels and you can’t put them on the original equip radiator.
  23. There are some very good utube video on both cold and hot chamber testing on the Bailey vans.
  24. A discussion that only proves you will never please all the people all the time. It is a fact that a box of a certain size has a finite volume. You may have preferences on how you partition it for use, cut access holes etc but it will still ultimately take the same amount. After about 10 vans with conventional lockers we have now had two Unicorns with Side lockers. They do have advantages for me (others will differ). In no particular order. 1. Weights in the centre of the van is more stable than at the ends. It reduces polar inertia and going from two full to two empty cylinders has little effect on nose weight, where as with a front locker it has a substantial effect. 2. A side opening door. Lost count of the number of times I have been injured by conventional front locker lids crashing down etc. 3. Easier lift in and out as no draw bar in the way. 4. Potentially better sealing of the gas locker from the van. 5. The locker itself is dry with a proper door seal. Clean stuff put in it stays clean) 6. They do actually have some spare space for odds and sods. (Not as much as some of the cavernous front lockers we have had, but that enforced a thinning out, which was long overdue) 7. Enables more usable room inside. Which is why 'length for length' Bailey have some of the longest Front benches. 8. Enables a simpler structure construction, with no big (likely to split) front panels. Disadvantages. 1. We do not have a dirty area where we can dump muddy stuff and clean it when we get home (Solved by the use of plastic tubs that fit through the side locker doors ) 2. We found some of the waste pipes smell and whilst this was never noticed in the old front lockers you do not want it inside a sealed van (also solved as above) As for changing gas over when one bottle empties. I have my bottles trained to run out at about 3am on the wettest night of the year. I also have an autochange over valve (for at least the last 15 years) Would it take me longer to do it manually, than with a front locker, Maybe, by a min or two, not sure and never going to find out. But to my mind if you are mostly 'off grid' and do not invest in an Auto Change over system you must enjoy cold, wet and pain. Other opinions with be forthcoming and equally valid for those people.
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