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Posts posted by Lutz

  1. 4 hours ago, Johnaldo said:

    Not sure as I understand, Lutz.


    Aren't all caravan VINs issued by the manufacturer? If not, then who?


    AFAIK, the VIN is always 17 characters.

    It begins with 4 letters … the first 2 are often SG as that signifies made in UK (but it could be others designating Germany or wherever). Then there’s a letter the manufacturer can use, and is often something like E for Elddis or B for Bailey. And then there’s either S or T denoting the axle configuration.


    This is followed by 3 numbers and 2 letters which the manufacturer can also use. Then the date letter. And finally 7 characters for the caravan’s individual serial number.


    So not sure where your “3 digits” for the manufacture fit in.




    SAL is Land Rover,  WF0 is Ford Germany, SAJ is Jaguar, WBA is BMW, for example. Most, but not all, vehicle manufacturer identifiers are 3 digit. Those beginning with SA to SM are reserved for UK manufacturers.


  2. 1 minute ago, Johnaldo said:

    Paul, it’s “caravan VIN number” you need to google. But TBH that doesn’t look the correct convention for a VIN. I see you have a “Welt Bumbler” van - you may need to tell us more about it.




    The number quoted fits in with standard VIN convention. VIN numbers for caravans are treated like any other vehicle.

  3. 1 hour ago, Bobsandy said:

    And it’s not just Bailey. All the uk manufacturers have the same fundamental low payload due to keeping the mtplm down. Higher spec axle means heavier brakes etc so a heavier van. Electric cars will mean lower towing limits/ lower range so the end of caravanning as we know it is not so distant.


    A higher spec axle usually only means a very minor weight increase, usually around 5kg, seldom more than 20kg unless a completely different chassis is required.

    B96 licences are now being issued in the UK for alternatively fuelled vans, enabling one to drive a vehicle weighing 4250kg. Perhaps it is only a matter of time before such licences will be extended to cover electric cars, too.

  4. 14 hours ago, Greg Tyler said:

    As someone stated in an earlier post, the lower weight is used rather than its true one, to enable smaller tow cars to tow them, as not every customer wants to splash out on a big 4x4 type veh. And It’s not all about your licence, I hold a full class one, our caravan has a Mtplm of 1490, and a mro of around 1350.

    the tow car must have a tow limit of at least 1490, even if the van is empty and below the max weight of the tow vehs capacity, if the plate states its mtplm is higher, you can be done, as the Permissible weight is greater than the car can tow, irrelevant of what the van weighs at time of checking.

    that was explained to me at a roadside VOSA check.

    might add, they are more likely to give you a warning, unless the van is actually over weight.


    Driving licence restrictions aside for a moment, it's the actual weights of the trailer that count. Therefore, the towcar does not have to have a tow limit equal to or greater than the plated MTPLM of the caravan. The plated gross train weight just has to be greater than the sum of all actual axle loads and the tow limit should be greater than the actual axle load of the caravan, not its plated MTPLM.

  5. 5 hours ago, Woodentop said:


    Well, actually, it is because if the axle load is exceeded and the suspension drops the cause is known. The dealer and/or AL-KO may not know unless you tell them but.....

    Having said that the statutory label in the gas locker shows the axle limit which will be the same as that on the axle case label anyway.



    The axle load limit on the statutory plate could be less than the limit shown on the axle. That's why I said the plate on the axle is of no significance to the end user.

  6. 6 minutes ago, david 1220 said:

    Seem to remember that theres a plate on the axle beam giving the max weight allowed .



    The one on the axle is of no significance to the end user.


    6 minutes ago, GaryB1969 said:


    While Lutz makes a very valid point, the UK police/VOSA (and possibly dealers come trade-in time) seem to regard the weight plate by the door as "Gospel".  While I personally value what Lutz says, trying to argue this with the authorities if weighed or explain it to a salesman is something I can do without, so I went for the upgraded plate.



    The label by the door is only an NCC requirement so it is only present anyway if the manufacturer is a member of the NCC. If the manufacturer is not a member there won't be such a label so there should be no reason to question a missing label.

  7. 1 minute ago, Woodentop said:

    You should be able to get the MTPLM uprated (paper exercise) which will give you much more payload - in some cases well over 100Kg improvement.


    When you find the van of your choice, look at the MTPLM on the label by the door, then look at the statutory label inside the gas locker. If there is a significant difference that difference is the increase you can achieve. Cost for upgrade is usually around £70.


    Or, in a case like the above, simply remove the label by the door. So long as all the details required by law are displayed on the statutory plate, (which will be the case), there is no need for a label by the door. There are no provisions for any such label in any legislation.

  8. No matter where you are, whether at home or abroad, infection rates are for the most part greatest in areas of high population density or where there are large congregations of people. That's why we've been touring this year in more out of the way regions and avoiding contact with others on the campsites where we have been staying wherever possible. With so many people reluctant to go abroad because of Covid, campsites at home have been too busy for our liking and we have felt safer going abroad. It's so much easier to keep clear of neighbours and the rest of the family when you're up in the hills somewhere, :)

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    • I agree completely 1
  9. We've been more than lucky this year, having been able to travel abroad twice and returning each time only days before our destination was declared a high risk area and we would have had to quarantine when we got home. I think our luck is about to run out though and it's going to have to be a gloomy winter at home. There's no way we're going to use the caravan in the cold.

  10. 27 minutes ago, ancell said:


    The label is in the gas locker as you state max weight 1700K max noseweight 100K but I was refering to the confusing vehicle specs.



    Just as on the caravan, there must be a towbar type approval label on the car, either on or near the towbar, displaying the noseweight limit.


    29 minutes ago, ancell said:


    It was very difficult to find the kerb weight of my previous tow car-2017 Seat Alhambra-again I found it in the owners hand book.



    Just be aware that a kerbweight in a handbook can only be a rough guide as the handbook is not specific to the vehicle in question.

  11. 25 minutes ago, Woodentop said:

    The towball limit is defined by the towball manufacturer and will have a label on the cross member to that effect.

    Anyhow it shouldn't be a problem as your caravan will likely have a AL-KO chassis with a noseweight limit of 100Kg - that will be in the handbook pack somewhere. If the van is less than about four years old there will be a rating label in the gas locker which (I think) will show the max noseweight.


    Correct. The noseweight limit for the car must be displayed on the towbar type approval plate and that of the caravan will be on its statutory plate, usually in the gas locker.

    Kerbweights will always vary as they are specific to each and every vehicle. Besides, manufacturers aren't obliged to quote actual kerbweights. Published figures are only there to give a rough guide.

  12. 23 minutes ago, Mine4Coal said:


    The ŠKODA dealer has been very forthcoming and has advised that the towing weights are 1600kg (unbraked) and 1900kg (braked). The kerbweight is 1730kg.


    The quoted towing limit for an unbraked trailer must be wrong. No unbraked trailer may weigh more than 750kg, whatever the towcar. For the dealer to make such a mistake should make one suspicious of all the other figures that he has quoted, as well.

    • I agree completely 2
  13. On 12/10/2020 at 17:56, Alan G H said:

    Sorry, but you are wrong. The sum of the permitted axle weights is often more than the permitted train weight, to provide some loading tolerance.


    I'm sorry, but maybe I didn't express myself clearly enough. The train weight is the permitted sum of all actual axle weights, not the sum of all permitted axle weights. Therein lies the difference.

    • Like 1
  14. 9 minutes ago, argon said:

    My D40 Navara and tow bar is rated 120kg but the AL-KO hitch is 100kg maximum.  

    I usually aim for 95kg which works well with my Pegasus 


    Actually, the hitch is rated at 150kg but the chassis at 100kg, so you are correct, for the wrong reason.

    • Like 1
  15. 15 hours ago, Frankie onyx said:

    Hubby and I live in Australia, we  have bought a  2008 Sterling Eccles Onyx, and we love it heaps !

    Decided to get it weighed today as we understand we are limited with weight.


    in Australia we have a term, "Gross Trailer Mass" there doesn't seem to be any reference to this in any of the vans paperwork or compliance plates.


    Plates on the van have:

     "Mass in Running Order" which I understand to be the unladen weight of the standard caravan. THIS IS STATED AT 1353kg

     "Tare" also the empty weight ?                   THIS IS STATED AT 1353kg

    "MTPLM" maximum we can carry.            THIS IS STATED AT 1600kg


    Also stamped on the compliance plate is : Load carrying capacity of axle or axle group. THIS IS STATED AT  1260kg


    My confusion arises from Load carrying capacity of the axle is 1260kg, but the empty caravan weighs 1353kgs ? ? ?   :unsure:


    Can someone with some knowledge please help me out ?




    Can you post a photograph of what you call a compliance plate? If the caravan was built in 2008 it was built before whole vehicle type approval compliance became effective, so wouldn't have needed a so-called compliance plate.


    Perhaps a photo would help sorting out the apparent anomaly.


    11 hours ago, Gordon said:

    Towcar terminology:- 

    Kerbweight - The weight of an unladen vehicle (includes certain allowances for fuel and the driver) 

    Train weight - The maximum permitted weight of a loaded towcar plus the weight of any loaded trailer


    Kerbweight is also old UK terminology. Current terminology is the same for all vehicles, whether caravans or towcars. In other words, MIRO and MTPLM should now be used in conjunction with towcars, too. Furthermore, kerbweight according to UK legislation does not include the driver, MIRO does.


    Train weight is NOT maximum permitted weight of a loaded towcar plus the weight of any loaded trailer, but the maximum permitted sum of all axle loads.

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  16. The type approval number must be displayed on the statutory plate. It will not necessarily be the same for all Lunar Cosmos 352. If the manufacturer made any amendments to the type approval documentation during the course of a model run, the number will change.

    If the caravan was type approved in the UK the number will start with 'e11'. Otherwise, it will start with an 'e' followed by another single or double digit number.

  17. I wouldn't rely on any MIRO figure regardless of whether the battery is included or not. It is a generic figure that represents the weight of just the one caravan that the manufacturer submitted for type approval and not that of the actual caravan in question. Therefore, the error could be greater than the weight of a battery.

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