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About bconnelly

  • Rank
    Over 10 posts
  • Birthday July 19

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  • Interests
    IT, Information Security, Web deign.
  • Towcar
    Jaguar XF
  • Caravan
    Hobby 575 VIP.

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  1. Looks great Wunny and very similar to what I did. The switch I have can be set to either latched or unlatched. As the 12v system in my 575 VIP uses a momentary high to activate a relay in the electrical box, I simply tapped into the connections on the lighting panel, that way the same remote button toggles on then off, I've set mine up as Button A = Awning light, B = Lounge lighting, C = Bedroom lighting, D (RED) = 12v main. As you're no doubt aware there is much more you could do such as central locking, motor mover power isolation, alarm set/unset and so on.
  2. I thought i'd share a very simple, inexpensive but useful mod with you. I recently bought a 4 channel remote switch (link below). Took about an hour to fit and setup. I can now control the caravan main power and lights remotely with the fobs. Ideal when returning to the van after dark or simply killing the lights when in bed. I'll try and post a wee video. eBay Link
  3. I thought i'd thank everyone on John's behalf:- "Hi all and thank you for your sterling help. It turns out it was my mistake. As I said, i'm not an electrician and mistook my water hose for the power lead, clearly this was going to cause a problem as the hose was dry. I discovered that once filled with water the hose conducts mains electricity much better and I now have lights. Looking forward to getting away with the van for a few days as soon as i'm discharged from hospital". Cheeers :-)
  4. Hi JayTea. My van came minus the table and I certainly wasn't prepared to pay Hobby prices for a replacement. As things stand though, we never use the seating area as a bed as there's only ever the two of us. If I had to, I could easily make and place a board between the seats to make up the bed, again a lot lighter and unobtrusive than the huge table. I do appreciate that the table may be better if you have kids along.
  5. Perhaps not a problem for everyone but I found the free standing table took up a lot of space. Likewise, the centre seat in the U shape lounge is somewhat redundant. My solution was to buy and fit a second hand drawer table unit from a 2011 Sterling Elite. Fits almost perfectly, the fold out table is an ideal size and of course there's the extra drawer storage. The unit is also about half the weight of the table. Total cost - £70.
  6. Getting my beejay, deetee and jaytea's mixed up now I mentioned the van in the first post beejay, it's a Hobby 575 VIP only made in 2010 but the post should be helpful to any Hobby owner without a battery. There are two vent tubes routed outside the van so quite safe, I'd be grateful for any advice you can give on your last point (charging when towing). If possible I would also like to link the battery to the vans 12v electrics to power the lights, toilet etc, do you know if that's possible without major changes? Cheers.
  7. My Hobby 575 VIP doesn't have the electric option fitted. I had it on my old Abbey Spectrum and to be honest it wasn't that great. My solution was to buy a small electric fan heater and plug it in when needed, it works brilliantly, weighs next to nothing, is quieter than the fan on the Truma and only cost about £15.
  8. Sorry, should read "Hydrogen Sulfide".
  9. As always JayTea you are absolutely right. I took it off for the photo but the box lid stays on and is close fitting. I'm not convinced it is totally airtight but there is a breather tube attached to the vent nipples on both sides of the battery that vent through the floor to the outside. I also made sure that the carbon monoxide detector I installed above where the battery is fitted is capable of detecting other gases including propane, butane, hydrogen and hydrogen dioxide. As you know we've just been away for 10 days, i was hooked up and had the charger on throughout - no alerts and we're both still alive. I agree you can't be too careful though.
  10. As I understand it there's no such thing as a UK spec Hobby just standard European models with some UK specific wants added. Typically eurovanners (I made that word up) rely on mains hookup that feeds a 12v transformer that in turn powers the interior lights, toilet etc and don't have a leisure battery as standard. To be honest I was a wee bit surprised at this discovery but soon realised how very practical it is unless you do a lot of off-grid touring which I don't. If it wasn't for the fact that I wanted a motor mover I wouldn't have bothered with a battery.
  11. As my Hobby 575 VIP didn't come with a leisure battery I needed to fit one for the new motor mover. My solution was pretty simple but it has passed a safety inspection so I thought i'd share it with other Hobby owners. I bought the battery together on eBay HERE. I screwed the box to the floor under the seat next to the door. I drilled an 8mm hole through the bottom of the box and the caravan floor to the outside. I ran the battery breather tube through the hole leaving roughly 5cm hanging under the van and sealed any space around it. I secured a normal smart charger next to the battery box, connected it to the battery and plugged it into the van's 230V supply (added a new socket for this). The battery now charges whenever the van is hooked up to mains power. Being a smart charger it conditions and charges the battery without overcharging. If the battery does produce gas when charging, that gas is heavier than air so drops out the breather tube to the outside. As you can see from the photo (box lid removed), the motor mover controller was fitted next to the battery box keeping the power run short. In all (not including the motor mover of course, it cost about £140 and took about an hour to do. II don't have a need to connect the battery to the caravan 12v electrics but this is obviously an option. Hope this is useful.
  12. There is often an inline fuse at the back of these cigar lighter sockets. Worth checking.
  13. Sorry for the slow response AJ. My mods are not all that exciting but so far: Changed the to electrics to 13 pin Euro. Fitted a leisure battery and charger. Fitted a PowrTouch motor mover. Fitted a 4TB NAS as a media device. Replaced the missing table. Changed all internal lights to LED. Still to do... Re-carpeting. Fit soft close drawer runners and locker hinges.
  14. Hi guys. I quite welcome the UK/European debate but don't want to create divisions. To be honest my old Abbey Spectrum 419 was almost 20 years old and had no leaks, no major faults and had many good years left in it. The Abbey build quality was good in my opinion but it was old technology and in many cases to solid and too heavy. I have many friends with much newer UK vans and they do seem to have a lot more quality issues than I did so maybe quality has dropped in recent years, I haven't owned one so I don't know. I bought the Hobby after a lot of research including speaking to other caravaners and reading through forums like this one. The evidence suggested the German vans were generally considered to be better built but the styling and layout were what won me over and i'm delighted with my choice. The worst thing about the Hobby in my opinion is the cheap plastic cabinets in the toilet that bend and creak but I have seen exactly the same fixtures in Swift caravans. I would not be against buying a UK van but all said and done, I chose and prefer the Hobby. If that opinion changes I will happily share it here. Whatever you choose, enjoy it.
  15. Finally got to use the new (to me) Hobby and have to say it was an awesome break. I must admit was a little concerned changing from a twin to a singe axle as the journey there was a little stormy but the Hobby was a pleasure to tow despite the side winds and I managed a respectable 34 mpg over the 200 or so miles. The fixed bed was as comfortable as being at home and all my recent mods worked perfectly. We stayed at The Pine Trees Leisure Park on the edge of Tyndrum. My experience is limited but we found the site absolutely fantastic, i'll definitely be going back. If you find yourself heading up that way, give it a try. Now looking forward to the next adventure :-)
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