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Paul R T

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About Paul R T

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    Over 100 posts

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  • Gender
  • Location
  • Interests
    Walking, France
  • Towcar
    Skoda Superb Estate 190
  • Caravan
    Coachman Pastiche 460

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  1. Hi All, Many thanks for all your replies and particularly thanks to Squash for the annotated map - very useful. We will now plan to stop there en route. Re gas useage, thanks for the reminder. We are only going to have a few sandwiches, not a full Sunday lunch, so that is OK! Cheers Paul R T
  2. Hi All We will be towing from Hertfordshire to the Peak Disrict this Sunday (10 November) via A1/A14/MI/A50/ A515 to Ashbourne and on to Hartington. We don't want to arrive at the site before the weekenders have left. We are thus planning to stop for a (self-catering) lunch at Donington Services. Has anyone used these services recently? I believe from earlier posts that there is a caravan parking area separate from the HGVs. Is this OK and reasonably signposted? Thanks for any help. Cheers Paul R T
  3. Hi All, To join in to the nostalgia thread: My first car in 1963 (when aged 17) was a 1931 Ausin 7. Starter motor inoperative, so always started on the (fixed in place) handle. New, very sharp clutch and useless brakes, despite having the Bendix Cable conversion for the brake linkages. Reg No OG 8905. Would love to know if it still exists and where. Driving learning curve was very steep. Later (1967) I had a 1935 Morris 8 Saloon, which was more practical in traffic, as it had hydraulic brakes. However, it had a collision with a Mini loosing it on a bend at night, and was written off. Replaced with a 1936 Morris 8 Tourer. I took this to the Pyrenees for a walking and camping trip. Carried more spares than camping equipment! Caravannng came much later after many years of camping. cheers Paul R T
  4. Hi, I entirely agree with Toein. Using the appropriate rubber pads for your mirror design is vital and not emphasised enough by Milenco et al. With my Skoda Superb, I use Grand Aero's with F pads. Since using these pads I have not lost a mirror, although I have previously lost one on the A11, and had one taken off by an overtaker cutting in too sharply on the A5. I also now make a habit of putting the mirrors on the night before towing and re-tightening the screws in the morning before departure. They can always be tightened further then, after they have been compressed overnight. Oh - and I still carry a spare mirror in the van! Cheers Paul R T
  5. Hi Mich, Not Essex, but Hertfordshire - not too far from you. I can recommend GT Towing, who are on the A1000, just south of Hatfield. I have had towbars fitted there on several towcars over the last 20 years. They are very cooperative and professional and know what they are doing, particularly in terms of the electrical connections and programming etc. My latest towcar is a 2016 Skoda Superb Estate Mark III, which was fitted with a towbar there 3 years ago. All has been fine. Cheers Paul R T
  6. Hi Ditsy, We stayed for a few days on one site by the Lac de Der in late October a year ago (to see the Cranes, but they hadn’t arrived by then!). This was ‘La Presquil de Champaubert’. We also looked at ‘La Clos du Vieux Moulin’. Both sites are on the south side of the lake. To be honest we were not impressed. They are both large sites, but with a preponderance of chalets. The touring pitches were poorly located and not well cared for. However, we have stayed several times on a CL-type site a few kilometres away. This is ‘Aire Naturel Camping Nature’ at Luxemont et Villotte, a village just east of Vitry le Francois. It is in the CMC ‘Touring France’ guide, entered under Vitry Le Francois. It is a delightful informal site, partly in an old orchard. It is close to the ‘Canal entre Champagne et Bourgogne’ with cycling/walking available along the towpath. There is also an old flooded gravel pit on the far side of the canal in which campers may swim. There is a reasonably easy access from the N4 (follow directions) and it is about 15km from the Lac de Der. It is very dog friendly. Cheers Paul R T
  7. Hi Chris, Alan S is quite correct that a standard corrugated waste hose will fit onto the outlet and into a pushfit waste elbow etc. However, as mentioned by Rodders, you will also find that GT Towing (on the A1000 between the Welham Green roundabout and Hatfield) will have a range of connectors, including Y type connectors so that two outlets can be combined into one before the aquaroll. Gavin and Keith in their caravan accessories dept are always very helpful. Cheers Paul R T (also local to WGC)
  8. In my experience this can happen quite often after you have emptied the cassette. I usually give the cassette a thump while holding it level, before inserting it back into the caravan. If this fails, opening and closing the blade once the cassette has been inserted usually sorts it. Cheers Paul R T
  9. Hi Pete, If you are thinking of vehicles in that range, I would strongly recommend looking at a Skoda Superb Estate, which has slightly more space than the Passat. We have been caravanning for 18 years, both around the UK and in France and Spain, usually towing about 5k miles per annum. We currently tow a Coachman Pastiche 460 (MPTLM 1350kg) with a 16 plate Superb III SLE Estate 190 manual. For the previous 5 years I had a 2010 Superb II estate 170. They have both been excellent tow-cars. There is plenty of power and torque when you need it and it is extremely stable even in some vigorous side winds. You are correct to say that it is recommended that the MPTLM of the caravan is no more than 85% of the kerbweight of the car There can be some confusion about ‘kerbweights’ with Skodas. The brochure quotes a ‘kerbweight’ without a driver, whereas the owners manual quotes an‘operating weight’, which includes 75 kg for the driver. (The two do tally.). The latter operating weight including a driver should be used as the ‘kerbweight’ for matching purposes. With the 170 we towed a Coachman Pastiche 460/2, which had a MPTLM of 1420kg, which was a 92% match. I never had any indication of instability (and I tend to tow fairly briskly). I believe that the Superbs are particularly stable towcars, which has contributed to them winning towcar awards on several occasions. Thus it is probably safe to exceed the 85% recommendation by a margin. Happy hunting Cheers Paul R T
  10. Hi again Simon, I had some further thoughts overnight. It is quite likely that when the dealer did the handover for the new caravan he demonstrated everything with the ehu connected, and did not repeat it with the ehu disconnected (certainly my experience). If he fitted your mover and the new battery some time in advance of you collecting the van, he may well have removed the battery fuse deliberately to ensure no battery drain in the intervening period. (The latest vans can have some 12v systems that are not controlled by the master switch by the door.) Thus you may find when you examine the fuse array that this fuse is missing, if he had forgotten to replace it at the actual handover. If so, look in a few drawers! If not there, they are ordinary car blade-type fuses, obtainable from most fuel stations or Halfords etc. I think that one is usually rated at 20 amps. Hope you get it sorted. Good caravanning. Cheers Paul R T
  11. No Stevan, The mover is connected straight from the battery, quite separate from all the other 12 v circuits. Using the mover with the EHU connected may well in certain circumstances b. ...r the charger, but will not blow the on line fuse I have identified. Cheers Paul R T
  12. Hi Simon I once had a similar problem when setting up without EHU on a campsite in France in our Pastiche 460/2 (2012). (EHU socket was too far away). I assume that all the 12v circuits are working when you are connected to an EHU and the problem is no 12v in the same circuits when the EHU is disconnected. One of the 12v fuses in the array in the fuse box, probably labelled 'battery' is a effectively a master fuse for the whole of the 12v system from the battery (but not from the charger). In my case I had plugged in a dodgy 12v phone charger to the 12v socket and it had blown this main fuse, instead of the 'socket only' fuse. So try extracting and checking the fuse labelled 'battery'. Best of luck Cheers Paul R T
  13. Hi The site near Chartres which we use quite regularly is ‘Les Ilots de St Val’, which is in the countryside between Maintenon and Nogent le Roi, about 25km north of Chartres. We use it primarily because my brother in law lives in Maintenon, but it is a friendly site with easy access, making it a good ‘stopover plus’ near to Chartres. It is a large site with many statics, but with separate areas for tourers. We have never found those areas crowded. There is very easy access from the N154 between Dreux and Chartres. Approaching from the north, exit the N154 onto the D26 signposted to Nogent-Le-Roi (the junction is 13km south of the last roundabout as you leave Dreux). Stay on the D26 as it bypasses Ormoy and keep going towards the outskirts of Nogent-le-Roi. At a roundabout turn right onto a new road, which bypasses Nogent le Roi on the southwest. At the very end of the bypass, turn right towards Maintenon on the D983 and in 3km look out for the signposted right turn at a minor cross roads up a hill to the campsite. It is not advisable to tow through the centre of Nogent le Roi, which is quite narrow. Also note that the D983 coming north through Maintenon and Pierres has an overabundance of ‘ralentisseurs’. Cheers Paul R T
  14. Hi Recommend you have a look at Upper Hurst Farm Campsite at Hulme End, near Hartington. We have stayed there several times, although not at the height of the season. It is a very pleasant open site with views across the hills. Pitches are full service and there is a very good toilet/shower block. There is a small shop in Hulme End and more shops in Hartington. It is very convenient for walking/cycling on both the Tissington Trail and the Manifild Trail, and for walks in Beresford Dale. Cheers Paul R T
  15. Hi Two weeks ago diesel in France at supermarkets was about 1. 43 Euros a litre. Just about the same as the UK. Cheers Paul R T
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