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About richardandros

  • Rank
    Over 10 posts

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  • Gender
  • Location
    East Yorkshire
  • Interests
    Photography, dogs, walking, off-road driving
  • Towcar
    VW Touareg
  • Caravan
    Knaus Starclass 695

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  1. Colapz already market these - with their waste pipe - which is so neat and much easier to store than rigid waste pipe or 8m of bendy 'snake'!
  2. And our S3 Barcelona used to do exactly the same thing!
  3. I learned the lesson about caravan tyres (almost) the hard way. I have to confess that having bought a new Bailey Barcelona with TPMS fitted, I didn't bother with inspecting the tyres - simply relying on the TPMS to let me know if anything was wrong. re low pressure etc. Then, at three and a half years old - two days before we were about to do the long haul from East Yorkshire to Devon, I decided to have a look at the tyres. Imagine my horror when I saw that one of them had serious (3" long) deep cracks in the sidewall - never dreamed for one moment that it would have degraded so much in such a short space of time. The tyres were a good brand (Michelin) and the van was used every month - so it hadn't been left standing in the same spot for months plus the tyres were only one month older than the van. Local garage were brilliant and fitted a new tyre immediately and I replaced the other three when we came back 'just in case' - but I shall never make that mistake again.
  4. I know this isn't the answer you were looking / hoping for - but I would be inclined to bin the whole lot and start again with a Thetford. This is what I did with our new Knaus after experiencing one failure after another plus the bloomin' thing leaked from the seal every time it was used and nothing would cure it. Rubbish flush, handle that jammed in the open position, useless wheels and then a flushing mechanism that packed up altogether - all after less than 5 months use. The parts used in the toilet are all flimsy and over-complicated in design and are never going to work properly. It was an expensive replacement (£600) but relatively easy for the dealer to do and the flush water now has to be taken from the inboard tank (that actually turned out to be a bonus) - but (touch wood), I've not had a single problem since it was replaced
  5. I went through this process with our last Barcelona in that I replaced the tyres at just under four years old (because of cracking on the sidewalls) and, since the, internal sensors have a battery life of about 5 years, thought it would be sensible to replace all the sensors at the same time as the tyres. (As stated above, they are sealed and there are no batteries to replace). It turned out that I then sold the van about six months later - so I needn't have bothered! The new Knaus didn't have TPMS - so I fitted the external sensors with the replaceable batteries. I was a bit concerned that with the van being longer than the Barcelona - and the wheels further back due to the longer A-frame, that they might not work. They did - and there was no need for the additional sender unit that Tyrepal suggest may be required. I would therefore be inclined to go for the external sensors with the ability to change the batteries cheaply and easily when required since they seem to do the job just as well as the internal ones.
  6. richardandros


    Well, my Touareg pulling a 2000kg Knaus was never going to be economical (about 20 mpg towing), but then I have added off-road tyres and a spare wheel on a roof rack - just to make sure I just accept that it's going to cost about £150 in diesel every time we go away (and a lot more if we do the Devon/Cornwall trip) - and get on with it.
  7. I doubt that it's anything to do with the bodyshell. Our Knaus is aluminium clad and there has been an issue in that the wifi reversing camera I had on my last Bailey, won't work and I know others have experienced the same problem with that camera on aluminium-clad vans. However, the Powrtouch motor mover works perfectly, so the aluminium cladding isn't stopping that signal getting through.
  8. There is another thread on here on this subject and I did comment on that one. I am sure Legal Eagle will correct me if I am wrong, but from my research - being in a similar situation to the OP - the covenant can be enforced by anyone on the development IF the covenant has been passed from one purchaser of the property to the next and so on. In effect, enforcement rights stay with the property - however many times that property has been sold. If, on the other hand, the covenant was simply between the builder and the first purchaser of that house - and stopped there - then, it can only be enforced by the individual imposing the covenant - and in our case, the original developer was bought out by another company which has subsequently gone into liquidation, so there is no one to enforce it. Looking at the Transfer Document in your deeds will tell you which it is. In my case, it is the former, so I'm potentially liable to someone objecting to our van being stored on the drive. It also means - certainly in our case - that a property owner can object to any breach of the covenant ANYWHERE on the parcel of land that formed part of that transaction that the original builder imposed the covenant on. It doesn't necessarily have to be the guy next door that's objecting but could be someone 300 yards away that can't even see the van! I'm just keeping my head down - as are the other dozen or so caravan / motorhome owners in my immediate vicinity.
  9. A bit unfair to make such a blanket statement, since a lot will depend on individual circumstances, post code etc and how different companies weigh the associated risks. All I can say is that in my case, the CMC quote was about in the middle of those I received and the deciding factor was reputation - which based on my recent experience, seems to have been justified.
  10. I have so far resisted commenting on this subject - either on here, or on CT - but I now will. I took out CMC Cover, last December when we bought our new Knaus. To be honest, I struggled to find a suitable insurer - either because of the value of the van, the fact that it was not UK manufactured - or that some wanted to impose what I considered to be unrealistic conditions. The CMC quotation was both reasonable and competitive and what swung it for me was peace of mind knowing their previous reputation for handling claims. Just over a month ago, we had the unfortunate (and frightening) experience of someone firing an air rifle at us whilst on a site in Cumbria. A very nice site we have used before and not one where you would have expected that sort of thing to happen. It resulted in an air-pellet sized dent in the side of the van which has had to be repaired at a cost of something in the region of £1000 to £1500. Ok - so not a massive claim on the insurance in the greater scheme of things, but a claim, nevertheless. I have to say that the manner in which the claim has been handled by Devitt's has been nothing short of excellent. An assessor arrived at the house to inspect the van, the day after I submitted the claim. He immediately authorised repairs and negotiated with my chosen repairer. I have been informed of progress throughout the repair, by Devitt's, either by email or telephone - and when they say they will ring you back - they actually do! When we hit a bit of a problem regarding the supply of a new decal and window seal by Knaus, the assessor stepped in and whilst I don't know the detail of what was said between him and the repairer, those spares have miraculously turned up. I have yet to collect the van - hopefully that will happen next week, but so far, the response from Devitts - in terms of 'fighting my corner' has been outstanding and it is for this reason that I haven't hesitated to renew my CMC cover, this year.
  11. OK - so having read through this again - I will highlight what, in my opinion, is wrong with the Dometic. The 'potential' for leaks in the Thetford, pale into insignificance by comparison. 1. The blade leaks continually and was evident from day one - and this is a problem highlighted on a number of forums. Despite there being plenty of silicone grease on the seal - and it was re-applied about once a week, the toilet leaked past the blade both into the van and when tipped up for emptying. 2. The flush is pathetic by comparison with the Thetford - despite Dometic making a big play about how good it is. 3. The handle used to pull the cassette is both flimsy and over-complicated in it's design. The spigots that have to be pushed in, in stages, to close the handle are not up to the job and it resulted in ours jamming fully open so that I could not get the cassette back in the locker without removing it completely. 4. You need three hands to empty the cassette. Contrary to the instructions, a single press on the 'anti-splash' valve is not sufficient and it has to be held down all the time the cassette is emptied. Because of the design of the cassette and the position of the valve, it is impossible to do this whilst holding onto the cassette. (Unless you DO have three hands!) 5. The blade mechanism is stiff to operate and it is necessary to spray the rails with silicone every couple of days and even this doesn't cure it. 6. The 'electricals' are unreliable and the flush mechanism on ours failed completely after only five months use (inevitably whilst on a CL with no toilet facility!). 7. The wheels are so small that they are useless on anything but hard tarmac. 8. The brittle plastic used for the cassette is prone to damage and there have been many instances reported on other forums of them cracking. There is even a You Tube video showing how to effect a repair! 9. The filler housing has a 'vertical' hole rather than a 'horizontal' one. This means additives cannot be added without using a piece of pipe and a funnel. Plus, you don't get any warning when it's full, so whatever you've put in there, dribbles down the side of the van with the potential for staining. So perhaps others can appreciate why I was so keen to bin the Dometic once and for all and replace it with a tried and trusty Thetford!
  12. John - the solution was quite simple - they fitted a model without an internal header tank and drew the flush water from the inboard tank - rendering the filler cap on the outside, redundant. However, no one but me knows that, so from the exterior, the van looks unchanged. The Thetford looks almost identical to the Dometic in that it has a 'dummy' header tank and it went into exactly the same space as the Dometic. Again, no one but me knows it has been changed. I was a bit sceptical about drawing the water from the internal tank, but I now prefer it to having to top up from outside. Since, in our system, the internal tank is filled automatically from the Aquaroll (via a float switch in the tank), I only have to think about keeping the Aquaroll topped up.
  13. Probably - but who cares. There will also be all the lights around the awning and down the side of the caravan so I suppose that makes me even more sad.
  14. Look forward to seeing you! We should be easy to spot - doubt that there will be that many Knaus Starclass's on site. Looking forward to trying out the "Dreamlight" LED lights on a pole that I bought , recently!
  15. The other alternative of course is to make a couple of bungs for each end of the waste pipe when it’s stored in the locker. No need to do that - just use a straight connector to join the two ends of the coiled waste pipe together - no water or smell can get out then. That said, I am also a fan of the Colapz system. I bought two kits (8m) plus the pegs and now I have a system that covers virtually any eventuality I will come across. It packs into its own bag and takes up so little room that it lives in the van permanently. I've also found it useful - when on a non-serviced pitch - and levelling the van produces a situation where the Wastemaster won't go under the normal outlet - I just use a short length to direct the waste water into the wastemaster.
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