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shed_dragger

Struggling To Get The Nose Weight Down

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If you intend to tow an otherwise "empty" 'van may I suggest that you put an awning or other bulky kit you need to take with you on the floor over axle of of 'van and adjust position until you achieve an acceptable nose weight. Others have suggested a 20 litre water container to do the same thing but that would require tethering in the right position for stability and safety reasons.

 

When you have added what you consider to be essentials for touring within the 'van's payload, suggest you check the nose weight and again use awning or other ballast as above to achieve acceptable nose weight.

 

My caravan is stored with my basic touring kit including awning 130 miles from my home and whenever I collect it from storage one of my pre-flight checks is the nose weight, adjusting floor cargo if necessary to achieve OK nose weight.

 

One rule to which I strictly adhere is to never place any weighty extra or essential kit more than a metre to the rear of the axle.

 

I once made the error of placing my untethered Kojak caravan jack on the caravan floor within my metre "rule". The nose weight was OK but during the journey my companion, who was driving, experienced an instability which she controlled by removing foot from throttle control and bringing caravan to a halt on the motorway hard shoulder. An exterior check of the outfit did not reveal any possible reasons for the "snake" and we continued the trip with myself in the driving seat. On arriving ar our destination it was discovered that the untethered Kojak had moved from its position and smashed the glass locker door under the cooker. I still do not know whether the untethered jack caused the instability or whether the instability caused the jack to move.

I put porch awning right at rear of van with all other heavy items under fixed bed, refit gas bottle and two empty plastic containers in front locker I end up with Nw of 105 / 110 Kgs. only thing not standard in van is a front chest of draws

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Now here's a question DT, if you, like me, tend to use the awning for ballast adjustment and you never place it more than a metre away from the axle, is that a clear metre from the forward end of the awning?

 

Our awning bag is about 1. 5 metres long and the inside of the van is 4. 7 metres. With the axle at the centre point of the van I have 2. 3 metres of floor behind the axle. Placing the awning with the forward edge on the axle line means there is only 0. 8 metres (2ft 7ins) of rearward adjustment 'til I hit the rear of the van and that's a 'no-no' for stability purposes.

 

Of course when it's placed up against the rear wall, the front edge is only 0. 8m from the axle-line of the van.

 

Now, in truth I usually only have to position the awning about midway between axle-line and the back wall, but that's with only one gas cylinder up front in the locker and very little else forward of the axle. A second gas cylinder would necessitate sliding the awning right to the back to get to the noseweight limit.

To clarify.

 

The rearward end of the porch awning kit in bags and other ballast items is less than a metre from the axle. The metre is my absolute limit which I have never used. Even if I had done there would probably be approximately one third or half a metre of the ballast in front of the axle. If I were to place the front end of the awning plus other ballast or load on the axle line I would probably find the rearward end of the load touching the wash room door which is at the rear of the caravan. With the ballast load in that position there would probably be a rather low nose weight. However I would probably have the option of transferring some of the ballast to the front locker.

 

My caravan is probably the same length as your 'van but not the same layout nor probably balance as mine is a Bailey flavoured Ranger 460/2.

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We're about 8ins longer and 80kg heavier than a 460/2. You've got the rear bathroom, whereas our bathroom and wardrobe are midships, where you kitchen resides. Our kitchen is opposite on the nearside and we have a single dinette across the back with a folded away bunk if needed. You get good length front benches at 6ft 2ins or so, ours are 5ft 6ins but the rear dinette bed is 6ft 8ins long which allows me a good stretch and is longer than our bed at home.

 

So similar in size but presumably different weight distribution.

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Hi Dee Tee

 

I have a Bailey GT60 Ranger 460/2 and we have struggled to keep the nose weight down to the 70kg recommended for our previous Golf Estate car. We have not been able to carry much at all in the front part of the 'van. I realize that it is desirable to have some a reasonable amount of nose weight built in to a 'van but Bailey appear to be overdoing it a bit and folk are having to 'back load' to compensate, which I regard as a bad thing. Some time ago I considered changing to an equivalent Bailey Olympus but the ex-works nose weight was going to be even higher than my current 'van so I decided against the idea. I've had two Bailey 'vans and have been happy with them apart from this aspect. Coachman list ex-works nose weights in their specification sheets unlike Bailey who appear to prefer to keep this information to themselves unless you specifically ask them for it, so I've ordered a Coachman Vision which has a much more reasonable ex-works nose weight. So, with regret, farewell Bailey.

 

John. :)

Edited by leedslad
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If the fixed bed is on the left or right side of the van, surly the weight is going to shifted to the left or right side of the axle when storing a spare wheel under it. .... usually a caravan spare wheel is always in the middle of the van, weather it is stored in the front gas locker or fixed under the van. ... just a thought. ..

 

It would if the wheel was central but it isn't. As I said it will end up almost exactly where I was before but inside a bed locker!

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What I did was move the spare wheel to under the van with a spare wheel carrier (kindly donated by a member on this forum) and replaced the 7KG butane bottle with a 6KG Calor lite one.

 

I'm sure we've still got a six-month old AlKo spare-wheel carrier that is no longer in use, which I'm more than willing to donate if needed.

 

But remember, the nose-weight of the car is a Legal requirement, and the AlKo hitch has a limit of 100kg's.

Edited by ADG

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