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All these new caravanners are a night mare!


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4 hours ago, Malc Edge said:

Now here's conundrum,I have fitted a permanent rear view camera on my van,do I really need extended mirrors which to be honest I never liked as they used to shake too much.Drove to France / Spain this year, the rear view camera was such a success.We could overtake without worrying that we would pull out in front of a speeding overtaker. I recommend the camera along with fitting tyre pressure monitors for peace of mind.

 

2 hours ago, Legal Eagle said:

As long as your camera provides the rear view as stated in the legislation, down both sides of the trailer.

milencotowing.jpg

 

I understood Malc Edge to mean that he has fitted the camera to the rear of his caravan, but he could have meant his van, if he uses a van to tow with?

1 hour ago, GaryB1969 said:

Mine go on when the caravan is coupled up and come off as soon as the caravan is unhitched.  Takes about the same length of time as putting my shoes on, not really a hassle.

 

I always put my shoes on before coupling or unhitching my caravan. Personal choice I guess?

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Parking bays are tight enough without having extended mirrors to squeeze in as well. Mine go on when the caravan is coupled up and come off as soon as the caravan is unhitched.  Takes about the same l

If the law says you need extended mirrors then you need them. I find these mirrors especially useful in seeing how close to the kerb/side of road the caravan wheels are, a rear view camera on the back

I think you should spend more time enjoying your own holiday than worrying what everyone else is up to.   If away for a few days my towing mirrors always stay on the car as not worth the has

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I was once towing my fathers caravan in the early 80's with an old cavalier that I owned at the time.  My Dad had been taken to hospital whilst on site and Mom could not drive.   Sister went down when Dad was discharged and brought them both home.    They always stayed on farm sites.  As the van was almost in Scotland, I decided to have an overnight stop on way back, and arranged this with another farm on the way home.   Got to this farm, spoke to farmer and decided I would stay night and carry on the journey next day.   Decided I would nip into town not too far away and get something to cook on little barbie for lunch.   Jumped in car, and drove off and back through field gate as farmer had already left it open for me.  (No one else on field)  About 500 yards down little lane when heard a bang.  Yes, you guessed it, got close to offside hedges and they had ripped towing mirror back against car, and it broke the mirror segment.  Some of this had fell off, despite them being taped or glued in some way to the back of the mirror.  Still had to go into town but also add a new mirror to the list.  Had to go father than local town to find some as they only came in pairs in those days!

 

Moral - if you are the sort of person to forget to take mirrors off car when towing, always use a site that's down small lanes.

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4 hours ago, Paul1957 said:

If the law says you need extended mirrors then you need them. I find these mirrors especially useful in seeing how close to the kerb/side of road the caravan wheels are, a rear view camera on the back of the caravan could not do that. A camera can not see in the blind spot at the side of the caravan that the normal car mirrors do not cover.

Believe me a camera is much much better,I see all I need to see with it.I have a discovery so seeing the kerb is no problem.

37 minutes ago, LeadFarmer said:

 

 

I understood Malc Edge to mean that he has fitted the camera to the rear of his caravan, but he could have meant his van, if he uses a van to tow with?

 

I always put my shoes on before coupling or unhitching my caravan. Personal choice I guess?

Yes I thought it obvious camera fitted to the caravan,tow with a disco.

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2 minutes ago, Malc Edge said:

Believe me a camera is much much better,I see all I need to see with it.I have a discovery so seeing the kerb is no problem.

I seem to remember that it was established a while ago that the driver of a Disco without extension mirrors could not see the legal required area along most caravan sides.  

Ern

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9 minutes ago, Malc Edge said:

Believe me a camera is much much better,I see all I need to see with it.I have a discovery so seeing the kerb is no problem.

Yes I thought it obvious camera fitted to the caravan,tow with a disco.

 

A camera on the caravan gives a brilliant view, I had one on my last caravan but with my current one being brand new I didn't want to be bonding onto or screwing into the bodywork.

 

However, a camera on the back of the caravan doesn't give you the sufficient view needed by law down the sides of the caravan, as per the diagram above, you will still need to use towing mirrors unless you can achieve that same view using your Discovery mirrors, which i doubt you will be able to.

 

If you were to stick a pice of chewing gum on the side panel of your caravan, would you be able to see it through your Discovery wing mirrors?

 

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If you cannot see the rear corner(s)  of your caravan you do not have enough view. It really is as simple as that.

(see diagram above!) 

Edited by Mr Plodd

Experience is an awful teacher who ends up sending you simply horrifying bills

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1 hour ago, LeadFarmer said:

I understood Malc Edge to mean that he has fitted the camera to the rear of his caravan, but he could have meant his van, if he uses a van to tow with?

Wherever the camera is fitted, the question was, can it replace the extended mirrors whilst towing and that is the question I answered.

Profile shows tow car to be a Land Rover Discovery 4.

Edited by Legal Eagle
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Not about mirrors but car related....My neighbour (sadly passed away) had a short wooden stick with brass ends that  his father ( who was Policeman many years ago) used to use to see how far a car was parked from the kerb..... too far out, they were fined...

Edited by gtepete
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I'll ask a stupid question that will be relevant to me.  With a folding camper will I need extended mirrors? I'm thinking not as although its wide I'll have view out the back with rear view mirror and I imagine better view from the wing mirrors than if I were pulling a normal caravan. 

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39 minutes ago, Ironeddie said:

I'll ask a stupid question that will be relevant to me.  With a folding camper will I need extended mirrors? I'm thinking not as although its wide I'll have view out the back with rear view mirror and I imagine better view from the wing mirrors than if I were pulling a normal caravan. 

There is no legal requirement to have extended mirrors! The requirement is to have an adequate view, as explained earlier by Legal Eagle. Extended mirrors are just means to an end. If you have the view from the existing mirrors you do not need extra.

Edited by Stevan
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3 hours ago, Mr Plodd said:

 

Is it type approved for towing as a fair few vehicles these days are not.

 

If it IS then you have identified a very interesting, and very valid, point! 

I didnt ask Andy. (Not like me I know) , it wasnt part of my remit this week. I will try to find out.

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18 minutes ago, Towtug said:

I didnt ask Andy. (Not like me I know) , it wasnt part of my remit this week. I will try to find out.

 

Assuming it's an "e" which is the only one I know of with rear view cameras in lieu of standard wing mirrors then no, it is not type approved and has no towing capacity. 

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Certain models of the Audi e-tron have wing cameras in place of wing mirrors, with small screens at the top of the door in the door card.

 

I tried them out the other day, very disconcerting.

 

Obviously nowhere to mount towing mirrors, and as PMW quite rightly says, the car isn't suitable or type tested for towing anyway so it doesn't matter.

 

I really can't see it catching on, but I said that about text messages :rolleyes:

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6 minutes ago, Hort2074 said:

Certain models of the Audi e-tron have wing cameras in place of wing mirrors, with small screens at the top of the door in the door card.

 

I tried them out the other day, very disconcerting.

 

Obviously nowhere to mount towing mirrors, and as PMW quite rightly says, the car isn't suitable or type tested for towing anyway so it doesn't matter.

 

I really can't see it catching on, but I said that about text messages :rolleyes:

BUT the Audi e Tron IS rated to tow and a decent amount. 1800kg should cover plenty of vans and some 8foot wide eg the Pegasus Grande.

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3 minutes ago, Hort2074 said:

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I really can't see it catching on, but I said that about text messages :rolleyes:

 

I thought the same about electrical operated parking brakes! Virtually impossible to buy a car with a “proper” (lever operated ) parking brake these days.

 

Then there are electrically operated boot lids and tailgates etc ! It not exactly a strenuous activity to do either is it?

Seats that automatically adjust, wipers that come in automatically, likewise vehicle lights, automated braking, lane keeping steering, traffic sign recognition etc. Who would have even thought such things possible 20 years ago and now they are virtually standard fitness! 

Experience is an awful teacher who ends up sending you simply horrifying bills

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4 minutes ago, Jezzerb said:

BUT the Audi e Tron IS rated to tow and a decent amount. 1800kg should cover plenty of vans and some 8foot wide eg the Pegasus Grande.

 

Ah, my mistake. Last time I spoke to a dealer they told me it wasn't type approved yet, but that was quite a while ago (or he was talking rubbish).

 

Thanks for the clarification.

 

Let's hope people who want to tow don't tick the £1250 option for virtual door mirrors, and then have nowhere for the mirror extensions :D

6 minutes ago, Mr Plodd said:

 

I thought the same about electrical operated parking brakes! Virtually impossible to buy a car with a “proper” (lever operated ) parking brake these days.

 

Then there are electrically operated boot lids and tailgates etc ! It not exactly a strenuous activity to do either is it?

Seats that automatically adjust, wipers that come in automatically, likewise vehicle lights, automated braking, lane keeping steering, traffic sign recognition etc. Who would have even thought such things possible 20 years ago and now they are virtually standard fitness! 

 

I'm a bit of a sucker for gadgets to be honest, each to their own.

 

I like the electric handbrake because it engages and disengages itself. I love the electric bootlid too, the Q7 boot is pretty hefty. 

 

I agree, it is amazing what is available now. My personal favourite is the heads-up display, I think I'll only buy cars with this from now on.

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I have a question please... Both our cars have cameras 360 all round on the Volvo, front and rear cameras on the Toyota. Both of which work brilliantly when clean, when its a bit misty or wet or driving in the rain with spray being thrown up they are useless unless you are used to looking through a diving visor...

So my thinking is, if you have a camera on the back of the caravan and drive down the road in the rain is it shielded enough to prevent spray getting on the lense rendering it pretty useless? same question goes with the 'virtual' door mirrors?

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12 minutes ago, Jacko1 said:

I have a question please... Both our cars have cameras 360 all round on the Volvo, front and rear cameras on the Toyota. Both of which work brilliantly when clean, when its a bit misty or wet or driving in the rain with spray being thrown up they are useless unless you are used to looking through a diving visor...

So my thinking is, if you have a camera on the back of the caravan and drive down the road in the rain is it shielded enough to prevent spray getting on the lense rendering it pretty useless? same question goes with the 'virtual' door mirrors?

 

Whilst I can't answer regarding the virtual door mirrors, I an comment on the rear cameras.

 

I have a rear camera on my car, and it is not sufficiently shielded. After driving in the rain, it is poor at best. It also gets dirty quickly. 

 

I have resorted to giving it a quick wipe with a rag every now and then when I think about it. Not ideal.

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Extension mirrors make straight line reversing much easier; the technique taught on maneuvering courses uses the mirrors to provide indication of how to make the slight adjustments required to keep the van in a straight line whilst backing up.

 

The common error is delegates looking at the wrong mirror (car mirror) as the caravan moving into this mirror as a prompt to steer is just  too late to make fine adjustments necessary and they then wander all over the place.

 

Cameras do not assist for this purpose. I do see the benefit of a clear rear view via a camera but extension mirrors are required too IMHO.

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1 hour ago, Hort2074 said:

 

 

I tried them out the other day, very disconcerting.

 

 

 

You should try it in a tractor unit with a 45ft taughtliner on

 

I had a demo of a new Mercedes Actros a couple of weeks ago with Mirror cameras 

they took some getting used to! 

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11 minutes ago, towman said:

You should try it in a tractor unit with a 45ft taughtliner on

 

I had a demo of a new Mercedes Actros a couple of weeks ago with Mirror cameras 

they took some getting used to! 

 

I couldn't drive one with standard mirrors!!!

 

I hate towing the caravan if I'm honest, I don't think I'd fancy a HGV.

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2016 Audi Q7 3. 0 - Towing a 2012 Sterling Elite Emerald

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I used to rather enjoy driving an artic. (But it wasn’t a full time job!) Something very satisfying being able to control/manoeuvre such a large vehicle! Likewise coaches.

 

A car and caravan poses no problem at all :)

Experience is an awful teacher who ends up sending you simply horrifying bills

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I have to reverse down our cul-de-sac and then up the side of the house so reversing is a "must have" for me, you soon get used to knowing exactly where your mirrors need to be or (as has been said) by the time you see the rear corner of the caravan appear in the mirror it's already way off course.

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18 hours ago, Ironeddie said:

I'll ask a stupid question that will be relevant to me.  With a folding camper will I need extended mirrors? I'm thinking not as although its wide I'll have view out the back with rear view mirror and I imagine better view from the wing mirrors than if I were pulling a normal caravan. 

No.  We've had folding campers, even the Conway Stirling which was a six berth.  We only got extending mirrors when we started using caravans

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Followed a Pennine a couple of weeks ago and had to flash them to pull over.  Battery  locker door was open and the battery was begging to slide out.  Owner said he could see over the top of the unit but he couldn’t see down the sides with the standard mirrors.   A fellow Opus camper owner had a battery fall out a couple of years ago.  Fortunately nobody following hit it but it could have caused a serious accident.

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