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About svimes

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    Over 1000 posts

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    This n that
  • Towcar
    BMW 520D
  • Caravan
    Sprite Major

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  1. True. But I sympathize to a point. If you could (I don't know if deposits would do this) remove the ability to multi book months in advance it wouldn't be like you'd be stopping those people using the sites, you would just be levelling the playing field a little (though it might hurt the last minute people like me). I'm not too bothered either way. I'll use a club site if I have to but it's nearly always because friends and family are there and no other reason.
  2. Will you be accessoring with a quad bike? Seen a few twin axles with these on our travels this year, usually towed by a rustic "pickup" (the quad goes in the loadbed). I assume they are of limited mobility but that the normal scooter isn't sufficient for local dropped kerbs.
  3. It all seemed fine last time we used it in June. There was a period when the CS bit wasn't working properly. We use both CS and CL but CS are well ahead and it must mostly be on location because that's how we choose. We don't use them either (well very rarely). But aren't people saying that the sites show as full until just before the "mark against you deadline" and then pitches become available. Essentially, the current system favours those who can plan far ahead and the least minute people (like us) but is not so good for the 2 week - 3 month planners
  4. We are on a French site at the moment. It's one where everyone pitches parallel to the access road as the pitches are not deep. Being Jonny Foreigners with our door on the wrong side, we had the option of pitching nose to tail with everyone else but having our door open on to the access road or 'upsetting' the regimentation. We opted for the latter but it does mean we are rear to rear with our neighbours so as to allow our neighbours on the other side room to hitch up. I don't think anyone is bothered.
  5. Our rear ones are attached to the chassis, the front ones just to a thin plate that is attached to the floor. Supports the theory that there's no jockey wheel at the back
  6. Upgrade? Walls have ears We do swap when possible, i.e. if it's an ad-hoc search for a nice picnic site as I am better with maps. But Lady V isn't allowed to tow the caravan and swapping during work hours will just result with us both being in the wrong car!
  7. Hmmm. Not so sure. Mine: -falls asleep -often has its own job to go to so may not be there -has no idea of traffic ahead -argues back
  8. No. It's a no. It would give you a route, so you wouldn't ignore it. It's not my sat nav, by the way. I just use Google and common sense.
  9. No. The sat nav would still find a route as it contains the full road network. If it's a good system it would flag that part of the route may be unsuitable according to the parameters you have given it.
  10. I think you answered it yourself. If you can get the layout you want and are ok with the decor and kit AND the van is dry then I'd go with second hand. You are free to swap it whenever you want. If you buy new there's a bigger penalty when you trade in unless you keep it a good while. Kit wise, I think that the recent blown air system from Truma (the combi) which came in the last 4 or 5 years is worth having if you are going to be all year vanners. It does away with the space heater and is effective and intuitive. You might find a van with the Alde system which has been around a long time, but it's not popular on family layouts. It's also a good system. Fridges have got bigger over recent years, so worth bearing in mind. Other than that, a working fridge, toilet and cooker are what you need.
  11. They do get a lot of good reports, often in situations where Illness is a factor. I've seen some bad breakdown reviews from them though, reflecting I suspect, that they are only as good as their local contractors. They are also very expensive. As we can't take advantage of the personal travel insurance aspect of their service we have opted for a cheaper company this year. Hope we don't need it!
  12. svimes

    Towing Myths

    Not sure. Cost about £40 and picked up at an independent garage where we had it serviced (uneven tyre wear on front tyres was the symptom). The tyres have plenty of tread left so haven't been swapped but we seem to go through two every year which, as we do about 11k a year, equates to about 22k per tyre.
  13. svimes

    Towing Myths

    We had the tracking sorted on our 5 series (former towcar of the year, ratio about 85%) before our current trip with van fully loaded. The difference in towing is marked. Previously, after passing a lorry or another caravan, there would be a little wiggle that verged on disconcerting. I never had that with our previous SuV or the smaller estate before it. I can still feel when the end of the van passes the thing we are overtaking but it's nowhere near as upsetting. Didn't even know the tracking was out.
  14. Great news. Would sanding then painting it look too naff? A lot of modern vans have lovely pale interior wood that is anything but "natural" and you can get some pretty clever paints these days.
  15. We've got the double dinette fixed bunk layout (Sprite Major 6td). We love it for the separation and the fact that you still get a decent bathroom in the middle We eat at the second dinette (it seats three and we use a stool). The front lounge is huge. The kids do invade but they are only 3 & 7. The kitchen has enough space to work but the passage is narrow, that's the worst of it. I'd check your kids fit the bunks in whatever you buy. Ours are fairly narrow. I've slept in them but it could be a sticking point with a large or picky kid. Adria do wider bunks as are some of the newer domestic offerings (8ft wide models). We also liked the Bailey Ancona (2016/2017). They have a lovely open feel inside. The bathroom is at the back though and the second dinette is much smaller. If you are summer caravanners with an awning though, it may well suit you better. We wanted to buy second hand, back in 2015. However the layouts we wanted were only four years old and rare on the market, therefore expensive (£11k). It was only £3k more to buy new. That's changed, though if you set your heart on an 8ft UK model you will be in a similar position.
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