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About happynomad

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    Freelander 2 HSE Lux
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    S1 Valencia

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  1. At some point I said I would make a freedom of information request regarding DVSA and prohibition notices in respect of breakaway cables... that post seems to have vanished but nonetheless... the three part question and the DVSA response is reproduced below: Your request and our response is as follows: 1: How many roadside prohibition notices have been issued in the previous five years to date by DVSA Officers specifically in respect of fully serviceable trailer / caravan breakaway cables being looped around: a. Fixed towballs b. Detachable towballs c. Total prohibition notices 2: If item a or item b above is greater than zero, what specific piece of legislation makes the looping of trailer/caravan breakaway cables around either type of tow ball an offence? 3: If no offence is committed by looping a trailer/caravan breakaway cable around a tow ball, are VOSA Officers empowered to issue prohibition notices for the non offence? Our response: It is not DVSA policy to issue a prohibition when the breakaway cable is serviceable and secured by looping the cable around the tow ball assembly. Note, the DVSA makes no distinction between tow ball types... they refer to a tow ball assembly. Of course, if a dedicated connection point is provided for a breakaway cable, common sense says it should be used in preference to looping around the tow ball assembly.
  2. That's a worry then - we quite often use our little city car to visit the nearby dealer. Looks like we won't be allowed to buy anything bigger than a two berth tent.
  3. I tow with 19" rims - 235/55 R19 105v (35 psi all round) in both summer and winter tyres. They are absolutely fine and the ride quality is not noticeably different from my last (same model) car on 17" tyres at 32 psi all round.
  4. Hadn't noticed but wandering off topic for a moment. .. I have just looked at their website. Maplin prices look seriously steep. Example: Hive Thermostat - self install Maplin - £179. 00 (Multi zone) or (£179. 00 complete with control unit and internet hub Screwfix - £95. 99 (Multi zone) or £143. 99 complete with control unit and internet hub. Based on that sort of pricing, Maplin may not be the the best or the first choice of electronic gizmo suppliers.
  5. Of course, the discussion was really about the hardware rather than the number and variety of channels received by the various formats. The BBC is the BBC regardless of how and from where it is broadcast.
  6. . .. and I think you'll find they are not. You even highlight a difference between the various standards. In your post you say that Freesat and Free To Air are the same. I'd agree insofar as both deliver satellite tv. A Citroen 2CV and a Rolls Royce Phantom are the same in that they will both transport people from point A to point B. It is how they do it and the user experience that is different. As an end user with both, FTA and Freesat, the differences between the two are enough to have me preferring to use my feature rich Freesat boxes and their associated facilities rather than an exceedingly feature poor FTA box. That is really all that actually matters to me regardless of how th similarities are perceived. Using Freesat and its accompanying app indoors as I do, it makes sense to me to use Freesat in the 'van. Really quite seamless. The same as using freeview indoors and in the van (tv reception perception permitting of course)
  7. A little off topic but relating directly to my comment about Vodafone above. .. published today. .. Vodafone - most complained about broadband / landline provider
  8. We have a Humax Freesat box indoors. It's a 1Gb 1010S with wifi and it has been absolutely brilliant. .. compared to our ever increasing Sky TV subscription it paid for itself in year one. It is over five years old now and still working perfectly. Recommended. If you are changing broadband supplier from TalkTalk may I suggest that you don't go to Vodafone. The deals look good but I have been with and actively trying to get away from them since November 2018. They want over £200 as an early exit fee but they haven't yet delivered a single day of satisfactory service. .. primarily due to the dysfunctional router they supply but there are speed issues and dsl dropouts to contend with too. The battle continues. Have a look here: Vodafone Community Discussion Forum The above is of course my personal opinion based on personal experience. It is not presented as and nor does it purport to be the opinion of Caravan Talk
  9. No grease if used with friction pad stabiliser - clean and dry is a must but for any metal to metal non stabiliser hitches (trailers / older caravans) then a smear of grease is required. After towing the trailer, I always store the tow bar clean and dry indoors ready for the caravan. If the trailer happens to the next thing towed a smear of grease is re-applied.
  10. We have what must be the same kit but these days, we use a Manhattan SX Freesat box - about £49 from Currys, Argos etc - instead of the Newline free to air (FTA) satellite box that came in the kit. It works very well and is about the same size. Being Freesat users at home we greatly prefer Freesat over free to air as we are used to it but the Manhattan box does not have the 'EasyFind' facility as found in the Newline box. We tend to set up with that box and then, once the dish is aligned, we simply swap the boxes over. There are a number of inexpensive FTA boxes to be found if you have no luck with finding a replacement remote.
  11. Haven't been for about three years now (having moved to the area from Essex) but in the past, we always phoned the site directly and booked. It was never a problem getting a pitch until the very last time we tried when we clashed with an a major event in the area and booked into nearby Beech Croft Farm instead. Even extending our stays (while on site) by a few days was never a problem. We seem to do that everywhere we go The only specific change I have heard of (may be inaccurate) is that the car parking cost for some Chatsworth House events (Christmas market for example) has risen massively to encourage visitors to arrive by coach/bus etc. For normal non event days it is something like £4 these days.
  12. . .. but towbars type approved under the Directive 94/20/EC (effective in the UK from 1998 and repealed in 2014) are still in use and will continue to be in use for as long as the vehicles they were type approved for are still on the road. These towbars may or may not have specific attachment points. It was not a requirement of D94/20/EC.
  13. What does the legislation actually state? Does this legislation actually make the use of towbars not fitted with an attachment point unlawful? VOSA, DVSA, the various caravan organisations and caravan insurers seem to think that looping a breakaway cable around a towball is lawful. Without a doubt they all advise using a dedicated attachment point where one is provided but it seems they also accept that not every towbar has such an attachment point.
  14. @John_b_45 Relax. .. you are not breaking the law. The law does not differentiate between fixed or detachable towbars. You are not breaking the law in respect of your breakaway cable. if your car was first registered after 1st August 1998, is not an import and has a non type approved towbar you may be.
  15. I had noted the advice given in 3b. I also noted that nowhere is it published that it is unlawful to loop the breakaway cable around the tow ball. I also noted the advice given in the DVSA's own website (as revised 22 Feb 18) which says specifically of the breakaway cable. .. In the case of a perfectly lawful towbar with no attachment point: How do you imagine the cable will need to be attached? What do you imagine the manufacturers advice may be? It seems (if your assertion is correct ) that there's an awful lot of people who really should know better advising and/or condoning law breaking. Here are some current examples of companies suggesting that unlawful breakaway cable attachment is acceptable in the absence of dedicated attachment points. From insurance company, Caravan Guard From insurance company, LifeSure From the Caravan & Motorhome Club And of course, The Camping and Caravan and Motorhome Club have a view too. . Certainly can't argue with Ć&ĆĆ's comment but note, they do not say it is unlawful to clip a breakaway cable round a towball, only that it is better to use a dedicated attachment point. Faultless logic - if a dedicated attachment point is available, use it. If such an attachment point is not available then as long as a breakaway cable is used, nobody is going to get a prohibition notice for something that is not unlawful. I'm confused now. .. something somebody on the internet says or something the DVSA, the C&MC, the Ć&ĆĆ, caravan insurers and many others say? Edited to add. .. I note that we still have the ridiculous filter in place that changes the initials of the two primary caravan ćlubs to unintended and/or meaningless abbreviations
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