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Charl

Pitstop Procedures

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On an automatic transmission vehicle hold the brake with your left foot and shift in Drive. Step on the accelerator (about 1/3 of the pedal move) and smoothly release the brake. This technique is also used in drag racing for a quicker launch.

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It surprises me that many apparantly don't use their van en route.

 

For us the holiday starts the moment we leave our driveway.

We stop at nice shady P's or "Aires", have freshly made sandwiches, drink something cold from the fridge (disposable plates & cups), use the toilet, lie down for a few minutes, etc. In autumn we would open the gas and use the heater too, have a cuppa. It all makes for a good rest. And we easily make 500-600km per day going 94km/h.

Naturally it is a matter of preference and choice, but for me the journey is part of the destination and this certainly adds to our total holiday enjoyment.

One of the reasons for owning a caravan, for us anyway.

 

Will certainly be using the steadies from now on though, after having read Gordon's post. ..

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On an automatic transmission vehicle hold the brake with your left foot and shift in Drive. Step on the accelerator (about 1/3 of the pedal move) and smoothly release the brake. This technique is also used in drag racing for a quicker launch.

I have used this method a few times on my Disco, it has surprised one or two boy racers at the speed a LR can get off the line, however I don't think I would try it with these modern complex auto boxes. Nos

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I am surprised people can use their vans while not at a site. I see people at sites with the vans fully loaded and it seems there would be little space for moving around the caravan.

 

Depending where we are stopping we may have breakfast but the caravan is never out of sight. Other places we take it in turns to use the loo at the services, bonnet left up to release the heat but outfit never left alone.

 

macafee2

Bonnet left up to release the heat - 50 years ago that was a quite common thing to do, I can't remember seeing any one do that in the last 40 years!

Or was that intended as a joke?

Alan

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My hubby loves his service station stop off's so he can have a holiday treat of Burger King or KFC however we never leave the 'van unattended - mostly as it's what we've always done and more importantly someone needs to stay with the Pooch. We always have the loo ready to use though as we always end up needing it if we don't :blush:

 

We always eat in the 'van though as it's far comfier and gives us all a break from the car and the chance for pooch to get a drink too. Normally just drop the Jockey wheel as door is in front of the axle - I'm sure the max noseweight is such for a reason and hubby and I are not lightweights :D We also treat the journey as part of the holiday so will sit there for as long as we can with the roof open (if it's not raining) having a lovely break with no screaming kids (we've done our bit. .!) or people jostling for your table before you've finished

 

I do agree with the less than welcoming Caravan parking at some places but that's a subject for another thread. .

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On an automatic transmission vehicle hold the brake with your left foot and shift in Drive. Step on the accelerator (about 1/3 of the pedal move) and smoothly release the brake. This technique is also used in drag racing for a quicker launch.

Many years ago A girlfriend had a 2CV Citroen that had a good party trick. When a boy racer pulled alongside her at traffic lights she would floor the throttle and when the lights changed dump the clutch. Because it had an inherently unbalanced twin cylinder engine it had a very heavy flywheel and the inertia effect from it would see her take off like a hare for thirty feet or so. It didn't matter that it was out of steam after that, just seeing the faces of the young lads as they went past was worth it. :)

 

Roger.

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We don't stop en route. Cast iron bladders and minimal appetites (whilst on the road) help.

Actually,I'm lying,we do stop but the interior of the caravan remains untouched. Don't ask me why,it's just an acquired habit of centuries of touring.

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Our procedure when stopping is park up fit hitch lock,stroll into the services have food and drink use loos stroll back to the car and caravan, remove hitch lock resume journey.

 

My wife is disabled and needs to have the walk to ease her back as sitting too long causes discomfort and hip dislocations. We would never dream of using the van at the services as the break away from the car is the whole point.

 

If we did use the van we would never use the gas systems as they are prohibited in most service areas according to signs we have seen in the parking areas.

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It surprises me that many apparantly don't use their van en route.

 

For us the holiday starts the moment we leave our driveway.

We stop at nice shady P's or "Aires", have freshly made sandwiches, drink something cold from the fridge (disposable plates & cups), use the toilet, lie down for a few minutes, etc. In autumn we would open the gas and use the heater too, have a cuppa. It all makes for a good rest. And we easily make 500-600km per day going 94km/h.

Naturally it is a matter of preference and choice, but for me the journey is part of the destination and this certainly adds to our total holiday enjoyment.

One of the reasons for owning a caravan, for us anyway.

 

Will certainly be using the steadies from now on though, after having read Gordon's post. ..

 

Newbie here, having only used our new van 3 times so far, albeit the last trip was down to the Dordogne for our main Summer holiday.

 

We stopped overnight (on the way down and back) in a lovely Aire. Put all the steadies down, cooked a nice meal, had a few glasses of wine and a good nights sleep. Boiled a kettle using the gas hob for a coffee in the morning and then set off nice and refreshed.

 

Like Charl, we consider the journey as an integral part of our holiday. On the way back home heading to Caen for the ferry we had 3 hours to kill so again pulled into a services and parked in the lorry area which was very quiet. Dropped all the steadies, caravan handbrake applied, and a quick brew then a couple of hours sleep on the bed while my wife had a couple of glasses of wine and read a book. Not the most picturesque of surroundings but suited our purposes.

 

We also had a separate cool box in the car containing fresh bread, ham, cheese tomatoes etc which we purchase in the morning before departing the site. So much better than service station sarnies.

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Newbie here, having only used our new van 3 times so far, albeit the last trip was down to the Dordogne for our main Summer holiday.

 

We stopped overnight (on the way down and back) in a lovely Aire. Put all the steadies down, cooked a nice meal, had a few glasses of wine and a good nights sleep. Boiled a kettle using the gas hob for a coffee in the morning and then set off nice and refreshed.

 

Like Charl, we consider the journey as an integral part of our holiday. On the way back home heading to Caen for the ferry we had 3 hours to kill so again pulled into a services and parked in the lorry area which was very quiet. Dropped all the steadies, caravan handbrake applied, and a quick brew then a couple of hours sleep on the bed while my wife had a couple of glasses of wine and read a book. Not the most picturesque of surroundings but suited our purposes.

 

We also had a separate cool box in the car containing fresh bread, ham, cheese tomatoes etc which we purchase in the morning before departing the site. So much better than service station sarnies.

 

You really should think twice about stopping for the night in an Aire. They are okay for a break during the day when there are people about, but they are not generally regarded as safe places to spend the night in a caravan.

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Another newbie here to caravanning.

 

Took the van to France for 3 weeks this summer and as per our previous UK trips we never used the van enroute (as in at stops during the days driving). And I don't think we ever will. Apart from the fact there was stuff on the floor of it carefully positioned over the axle, I found we were quite happy just to use the car or the Aire service facilities. These were perfectly fine before we started caravanning (we aren't new to visiting France) so this has become the norm I guess.

Over night stops were all in municipal sites though, I wouldn't feel comfortable using an Aire for sleeping.

I popped the hitch lock on when we left it to eat or stretch our legs at the Aires and never worried about it being tampered with or stolen.

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You did,nt wash your hands after using the toilet. :D:D

That thought occurred to me as well!

But is that also off topic, Gordon?

Alan

Edited by a13est

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You did,nt wash your hands after using the toilet. :D:D

That thought occurred to me as well!

But is that also off topic, Gordon?

Alan

Read the opening post and you decide.

There's a clue in that Nick's comment has not been removed ;)

Gordon.

 

PS

My reply IS off topic, so I'll shut up now . . . :blush:

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You really should think twice about stopping for the night in an Aire. They are okay for a break during the day when there are people about, but they are not generally regarded as safe places to spend the night in a caravan.

 

Hi Chalky thanks for your concern regarding the safety of overnight stays in an Aire. Whilst this was our first trip to France in our van, we've been going there every year since 1992 and have always slept in an Aire to break up the journey as we usually holiday in the Dordogne, Provence or the Languedoc regions.

 

We've never experienced any issues. In fact I feel safer there than I do when driving around in the UK, and leaving the car/van in a motorway services or car park.

 

The car is locked, alarmed and naturally we locked the door of the van and attach the hitchlock too, before turning in for the night. We usually stay at one of the larger Aire's and know them all well now after 22 years of using them. Usually there are quite a few other vans & motor homes plus several cars & HGV's parked up nearby, so we've never considered being at risk from sleeping overnight.

 

I agree there may have been one or two reports of attempted thefts etc but then again how many people use them to sleep overnight? I guess the risk overall is a low one and one I'm more than happy to accept.

Edited by redsteveb

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I guess the risk overall is a low one and one I'm more than happy to accept.

 

 

Sounds like I've found my first fellow CT anarchist! :ph34r:

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Locking your doors and securing the car is not going to stop your tyres being punctured, when they do that you are a sitting duck and they can rob and attack you at their leisure, I know it happened to me, They then wait until most people are gone and you are busy with changing wheel then they pounce.

 

Just because it has not happened is not to say it will not.

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Locking your doors and securing the car is not going to stop your tyres being punctured, when they do that you are a sitting duck and they can rob and attack you at their leisure, I know it happened to me, They then wait until most people are gone and you are busy with changing wheel then they pounce.

 

Just because it has not happened is not to say it will not.

Sorry to hear about your experience. As I said, we've used them for overnight stays for over 20 years without incident. I guess like everything else in life you weigh up the risk and decide to take it or not. If I worried about everything that could happen in life I'd never set foot outside my front door :-)

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Safe or not, personally I want to get off the motorway overnight and find a nearby campsite; somewhere we can give the dogs a proper walk, perhaps find a nice restaurant and then sleep away from the traffic noise.

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