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Everything posted by John_b_45

  1. Some may remember my arrangement for an iBoost. No damage, van Lunar with aluminium panels.
  2. Start by sacking the wife! Smiles. Sounds like you're going to be busy. Hope everything goes well and you have many harmonious and exciting holidays in the van.
  3. Nah! Wast of time pointing anything out. Quote " So who cares what they think as I don't?" Mind made up. Bit like the "red lines" May has tried not to cross. My Belgium friends jokingly asked if I wanted to move to their bit of the world a few days ago. I say jokingly but in reality from pity.
  4. I think the point is - shown clearly on the graph - that the value fell dramatically during 2016 as a direct result of Brexit. It has remained at the end of 2016 low for the past couple of years.
  5. I can only admire the time and trouble some go to in order to watch UK TV abroad. Really not necessary you know. - honest. I watched a guy a few years ago hold a sat dish to his chest and walk around the van. Window open with wife inside ready to stop him if he got lucky. So far as I remember he gave up! I wonder if he ever made it? And this is true - not made up.
  6. Came back from Bourges (Vierson) last year and did exactly this (Round Orleans on the A10) I too would suggest you consider it. From Chartres we followed the route you have shown with easy driving throughout. Afterthought. Interested to note you skirt London to the South! We've always headed for Dartford after the M1. Disgusting journey either way especially after the space in France.
  7. The serried ranks of CMC sites smack of anything but the freedom camping should bring. Maybe most commercial sites suffer from a similar malaise but for us CLs and Red Pennant are the ONLY reasons we belong to any so called "club". Janine, Lady Bird - you would be most welcome parked next to us no matter what type of site we were on. But from experience here I have to say that the "official club sites" of the CMC do not ooze friendliness. We use them only if no alternative available. It's so different abroad. There you find vans, motor homes of all ages and not a soul cares a fig! You generally park how you want and often where you want within reason. Not like here in one of the "club" sites. Move that peg if you dare! I suspect it has something to do with pride of ownership. The widest and the biggest with every convenience known to man including automatic satellite dishes, self levelling gizmos and 4 litre cars to pull them (in the case of caravans), has raised "camping/caravanning to a status symbol for some. Not so in Europe for the most part. I sometimes wonder why the CMC magazine chooses to feature leisure vehicles that most people would need a second mortgage to buy - and in the case of motor homes, run. Camping is about freedom not elitism. Well - it should be in my book. Not for one moment am I suggesting we should all be "one happy family" but hands up those who have never wondered why no smile or wave from a neighbour has been forthcoming! Our experience abroad is that in most sites a chat with a neighbour has always been welcome and never have we felt out of place because of our possessions. Of course after Brexit nothing will change!
  8. Why not check on Google maps for the car park or exact spot you want to visit, right click on the map in either map mode or satellite mode and select "What's Here". (whilst you're at it "drive" any dodgy looking sections to check all good). Simply add these coordinates to your Garmin and save as a favourite. You can later edit it and pop it in a more meaningful category if you wish - you can, of course, make your own category if required. This method will take you exactly where you wish to go. Selecting random street names and house numbers or whatever will not. All you can be sure of with that procedure is getting to somewhere in the town.
  9. That's interesting. I always believed that tyres stored properly would not deteriorate within reasonable periods (say a couple of years) and that the estimated life started from date of fitting.
  10. The rate early 2016 was on a par with 2004 to 2008. It rose steadily from 2009 until 2016 as you can see, Notice the sharp decline throughout 2016?
  11. Nothing whatsoever wrong with your brain or your fingers Janine. Was just curious to know what you were meaning. Good to hear that you are sharing your expertise with your local council too. Without mentioning any topical debate - if you can stretch a point and call it a debate - there are many of us who have lost faith in politicians. The "elected members" point certainly applies to many at the moment - decisions/allegiance etc swayed by personal and political gain and not the future of our country. I hope your husband's parents were not caught up in the recent scandal too.
  12. Do you think the Councils have been caught out then? Are we talking about recent residents or those born and bred in the UK? Just a tad confused as to who you are talking about? The "now" seems odd!
  13. HaHa Wonder if you need wellies to walk around the place! Can just imagine the dogs barking, the kids playing football, the parents drinking mainly because they either can't get out or dare not get out for fear of holidays ending! Beggars belief. The pic below shows that a simple barrier can end the pollution caused by motor home "parasitic" parking. This is in France where motor homes have countless parking specifically set aside for them. The number of times we have paid for our site and gone out in the car only to find parking with no height restriction frequently being used by the motor home fraternity, canopy out, vehicle levelled and chocked. Not just a few hours parking. Pic shows the benefit of a barrier in popular areas.
  14. Found similar under my new van. Particularly butt ends set maybe 5mm apart directly under gas locked and rest of caravan floor. Would be a straightforward job to fill the gap with sealant but I've decided that would have been done if considered necessary. Since the van comes with a 10 year water ingress guarantee I am presuming it doesn't present any problem and, just maybe, filling could be claimed to negate the guarantee!
  15. Superb web site (so easy to navigate and clear to understand) and congratulations on your success.
  16. Always on the look out for decent CLs and this one is very close to the railway if that's a priority. Had a look on Google - as you do - and just one question please. Are the 5 vans parked with their back up against the large shed with solar panels on the roof on the designated the CL pitches? If that's the case, and since space between each van is approximately the width of each van, are cars parked in the hedged off area away from vans? There looks to be a few cars there!
  17. Bit of a downsize as you suggest but will be putting adverts in the local press next week for a "driver"!
  18. I think that could be possible. In my crawlings around under it I realised the chassis is the new type - made of single "beams" and not bolted together in sections for size adjustment as was the case in most vans. It's possible that the axle was left in the same place (distance from the hitch) as the previous model and the extra length with associated extra weight behind the axle is the culprit. It's equally possible the new chassis design has a bearing. In all honesty I've not the faintest idea - all I know is that unhitched on the hill I live on the nose weight is negative with only a battery on board.
  19. It is baffling isn't it? I think some people believe I'm making this up. I'm not. I can tell you that releasing the van outside the house was strangely difficult because I now knew it was trying to tip backwards and pressing abnormally on the stabiliser. As it came free the hitch started to rise. As I've explained I managed to hold it down - very little effort was needed - and my wife took over whilst I sorted the mover. One on the drive and lever the van, of course, sat normally. I wish I had checked the nose weight at that time but it was late afternoon and cold. Next day, without thinking about weighing, we started adding stuff to the van. You will know the event I'm sure - will it fit here? Where do the chairs go etc. The addition of the cycle rack was another "event" and in this case, after adding both bikes I did measure nose weight and it was 45 kg. This truly worried me. Since then I've moved the spare to the gas locker, moved the outer cycle inwards by about 6 inches, added a second gas bottle plus other items and redistributed as best I could stuff inside the van (this latter change is negligible I think) I've never been in a situation where I'm adding things to the van rather than carrying them in the car! I measured nose-weight yesterday having added the caravanstore to the awning rail but with an empty fridge and wardrobe and it was close to 105 kg. That gives an idea of just how much I put forwards! With the bikes on and fridge and wardobe filled that will, obviously, decrease. I'll know by how much when we are packed to go later this week. Fingers crossed. If the van had not been uprated to 1500 kg, thus giving me a payload of 248 kg it would have been impossible to load safely with the bikes on the back. We live and learn I guess.
  20. Yes, agreed. Certainly on this van. But they do and with a decent nose weight to start from then not an issue. Hey Ho. I've amended, rearranged and modified to get something that hopefully works so all is well. I'm not going down the road of trivia and point scoring but suffice it to say that: 1. In my stupidity I presumed that Swift would not fit a cycle carrier to a van that is patently not balanced for one and certainly could not be made safe without the upgrade to 1500 kg. It beggars belief what weight issues would arise with 3 bikes on the rack. 2. Secondly I had no opportunity to weigh the nose weight when initially viewing the van - of course you would have asked for a gauge and checked I know - but I didn't. 3. As a matter of fact I do check my nose weight as a matter of course. But that's on my drive and not at a dealer. Of course when I next buy a van I'll take my Milenco with me just like every other customer arriving at the dealership has one tucked under their arm.
  21. According to Swift Talk the 2016 van was shorter than mine. There were no issues with nose weight. This van is around 2 feet longer and has the tall fridge. The opinion seems to be that adding the extra - and with cooker, fridge and wardrobe all behind the axle, this has caused the light nose weight. It's worth noting that without my upgrade to 1500 kg there is no way I could have added sufficient weight to counter the effect of two bikes on the rear. I hope no-one wanting a "lightish " van and towing with a smaller less powerful car, and wishing to carry bikes reads this post! In a nutshell my gripe with swift is that there should be no rear mounts if the van cannot handle them. It should NOT be necessary to have to upgrade the MTPLM to 1500 kg to get a satisfactory nose weight. Errr - Not sure where to find the "signature file!
  22. I tried and changed in my profile but it doesn't seem to appear here. No. But have considered other possible ways forward. I've joined Swift Talk now I have a Swift and posted there too. If you have the time and patience this sets out my thought from this point on. Having slept on this here are my immediate thoughts (thanks for the interest Yorkguy) The carrier has provision for a 3rd bike. I am intending moving the outer current "channel" inwards to the place where a 3rd channel would fit. I will need to do a bit of drilling but hopefully straightforward. This will move the outer bike back towards the van by around 6 inches - not been out to measure it yet. Obviously doing this makes fitting the bikes rather more difficult but once a loading pattern is achieved it will be easy to replicate. The bike holder "grasp the frame thingy" will , of course, now be too long but I will either angle it up or down to grab the bike somewhere plus, a few extra webbing ties to complete the job. This I hope will add another 5kg approx to nose weight and reduces overhang by 6 inches. Not a massive gain but anything is worth having. Second job is to remove the contraption that holds the spare to the now redundant AlKo carrier. This should easily screw to the bulkhead at the front right (few more holes for extra screws easily made). Reasoning is that the spare will be rarely used and shifting stuff to get at it quick and simple. Outer right facing van because that side of the van is lightest when taking account of fittings and the spare will be a constant weight. Third job, having ordered a long pigtail, is to remove the existing clamps and adapt one to fit the wider base of my Safefill. This will then be placed to the extreme left of the gas locker. Reasoning it will balance the spare to some extent when full but more importantly it leaves a large area for other items including the wastemaster and the aquaroll. (Amazed that these fit in but glad they do since firstly the shower door is too narrow for the aquaroll and secondly carrying both in shower would only add to rear weight. Fourth job is to literally check how things fit and if need be move the second gas bottle clamp to accommodate. I was hoping to be able to leave the second bottle behind. The massive advantage of Safefill is, of course, that I can fill it at any stage and always leave home full. Perhaps now the second bottle will stay or other "ballast" will be used. Suck it and see time for this one! Fifth job is to re-arrange a few things inside the van although little will be gained by this I'm afraid. The next day or so will show just how successful I've been. Failure to achieve a decent nose weight will be disappointing to say the least. I will not go away for 6 and more weeks to Europe and live out of suitcases to leave the wardrobe fairly empty. I might leave a single bike on the rack and carry one inside the van but this will be a last resort. I will not carry the bikes on the roof of the car for a number of reasons not least of which is the risk of damage when putting them into place. 13.2 kg at arms length leaning over the roof (SUV high roof) is not going to happen. Oh, and no, I won't be buying one of the expensive slide on carriers either. Phew - Thanks for reading. Will report back after doing the above if you can stand more from me. And someone please tell me why my profile does not match the current van.
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