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About GaryB1969

  • Rank
    Over 500 posts

Profile Information

  • Gender
  • Location
    Ashby de la Zouch
  • Interests
    Classic cars, cycling, walking
  • Towcar
    2016 BMW520D
  • Caravan
    2018 Swift Sprite Quattro EB

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766 profile views
  1. GaryB1969

    Buyers regret?

    In 2002 we purchased our first brand new caravan (a Sterling Eccles Jewel, you never forget that first new caravan smell). We traded in a damp Coachman Mirage and had to put nearly £9K towards it, borrowed from Tesco over four years. It was a bit tight and got tighter when our daughter was born in 2004 (2 more years left in the loan), We used cheaper club sites (typically ones without facilities) and a travel cot between the front seats (Practical Caravan actually featured us in an article in 2005 on touring with toddlers!). We never regretted it as that initial new caravan purchase gave us a good footing onto the new caravan ladder and allowed us to trade up every few years with minimal extra needed. There’s some great low cost sites and some CL’s and CS’s in great locations for kids. Money is always tight with young kids, hang in there!
  2. GaryB1969

    Tow bar electric clicking noise

    When I fitted a towbar to a Land Rover Freelander the dedicated towing relay was (I think!!!) under the dashboard and replaced one that was already there. This used a pre-wired loom that came as part of a kit. If the OP's car has similar it could well be easily heard if it's near the driver.
  3. And another steam enthusiast here! Incredibly we've never done Broadway but hope to visit October half term. Although I've never used them there are a few sites at Barrow on Soar and a couple at Cotes, while they're not exactly near to the line they are only a short drive away from the Great Central and quite close to the new bridge being built over the Midland main line linking both halves of the Great Central together again. Avoid Proctors site at Barrow though......... http://www.gcrailway.co.uk/
  4. GaryB1969

    NEC Caravan Show

    It's a good day out but take plenty of money of you want to buy lunch!
  5. I see Milenco have a wheel lock similar in operation to the Nemesis and Excalibur (they attach to a special wheel bolt and have an arm that fouls the chassis preventing wheel rotation). Sold Secure Gold standard so seem to be quite robust, has anyone used one? I have a twin axle and use one Alko and one (older) Milenco lock, ever keen to keep the thieves away I'm looking to replace my older Milenco clamp style lock but don't want a second Alko lock, so just curious f anyone's actually used one of the new Milenco type? http://www.milenco.com/products/security/wheelclamps/wraith-wheel-lock
  6. GaryB1969

    Review: Pembrey country park

    We spent 8 nights there in 2013 in similarly hot weather and loved it but I imagine it's a bit gloomy and boring for kids if the weather isn't so good. We went horse riding a couple of times at the centre on the park and enjoyed that.
  7. GaryB1969

    NEC Caravan Show

    We went last year and were a bit under-whelmed by it, we only went looking for some new chairs for the awning and set eyes on the new Sprite Quattro EB twin axle. We made the mistake of going inside and loved the layout, but didn't take it seriously as I assumed it was too heavy for my car. I then made a second mistake of checking the MTPLM of it and discovered it was a 91% match for my car.......... We didn't buy one from the show but 3 days later I was made a lot poorer after buying one through my local dealer. We still haven't got any new chairs for the awning..........
  8. GaryB1969

    Twin Axle with rear skid wheels for gounding

    Could you conduct an experiment with your current caravan by bolting a couple of wooden extensions to the chassis at the rear to mimic the length of a longer twin axle, pulling out and into the driveway with a helper watching to see just how close the wooden extensions get to the road surface? If they touch, being wood they would break and not put any stress on the chassis, if they clear then it gives an indication that it might be okay with a bigger caravan.
  9. GaryB1969

    Biggest loss in Indian history!

    It depends who you listen to! I did read a while ago (but cannot for the life of me find it now) that Loughborough University had developed a filter that really cleaned up diesel vehicle emissions, but I suppose that won't "fit" with the Witch-hunt against diesels. I'm all for cleaning up urban pollution but there are so many differing opinions and false facts out there that it's difficult to make an informed decision. My current car is diesel and the next one will be.
  10. Okay, we have a 2017 Kampa Rally 390 Plus which (now it's been waterproofed. .....) is great for breaks of a week or more, but it's too big and heavy for a long weekend and we're looking for an additional smaller inflatable awning, something in the 280cm to 330cm region (without the annex that we have on our current 390). I know that every forum has 101 pages on various air awnings but has anyone got first hand experience of a decent smaller air awning? I want something that can be carried by one person, fits into a roof box and above all is NOT known for water proofing issues. Thanks
  11. GaryB1969

    Sprite Sportstyle s4 2007

    Agreed, if you have a feeling something isn't right you'll always be looking for it! With a second hand caravan a complete service history is important as a damp caravan can often be a soul destroying money-pit. If buying from a dealer insist in a full damp check being carried out prior to a sale, the advantage with buying from a dealer is that you can often get a reasonable warranty,.
  12. GaryB1969

    Sprite Sportstyle s4 2007

    Seeing as you're looking at spending a few thousand on something you don't have experience of I'd be looking to see if it has any service history, specifically with the damp-check readings. If not, see if there's a mobile caravan servicing engineer that would carry out a damp check for you. This will cost a few pounds but it'd be a lot cheaper than finding out it's got damp further down the line as once damp is found it can often be quite severe (the tip of the iceberg theory often holds true with a damp caravan).
  13. GaryB1969

    American Express Cards

    I have an AMEX card as a personal credit card purely for the cash-back initiative but to be honest with so many places refusing to accept it, its benefit is sailing close to the annual subscription charge and I will look around for something better. When I was last in France, the main manned service stations on the toll motorways wouldn't accept it (one was Shell from memory) and I had to use my business Visa card to pay for fuel (one attendant actually threw it across the counter at me and shouted "Non!!!").
  14. GaryB1969

    Volvo XC60 comments

    I can't help with your specific requirements but a friend tows a 1600kg caravan with a 2018 V90 D4 and loves it with no issues towing. I am also considering a D4 V90 as I replace my car this year, I'd be using it to pull 1624kgs.
  15. GaryB1969

    I did know that.

    It's often very difficult to tell at a glance if something is a suitable (or legal) match on looks alone given the big variation in weights (both maximum towing, train and kerb) of a selection of vehicles of the same make (but different model). For me the biggest jaw-dropper is when they open the caravan door after arriving on-site and empty out around 500kgs of junk onto the pitch!