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Wide Bodied Caravans


not so big john

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At the NEC last week two caravans impressed me, for their layouts and spaciousness, the Adria Astella and the Hobby Prestige. Of course the reason for this was their wider body, at 2. 5m. It is amazing how much they can fit into that extra 20cm. Winding country lanes in Devon and single tracks in the Highlands aside, are they really that much more difficult to tow on British roads? Given that I do most of my towing on main roads and leave the minor roads for exploring once on site, I feel that extra 6 inches would be ok. What do you think? Has any of you any experience of towing the wider body?

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Has any of you any experience of towing the wider body?
Yes
are they really that much more difficult to tow on British roads?
No

Fourwinds Hurricane 31D Motorhome. Also MGTF135 1. 8i Roadster (fun) & Volvo V70 3.2Ltr LPG (everyday car)
Unless otherwise stated, my posts will be my personal thoughts and have the same standing as any other member of Caravan and Motorhome Talk.

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But it honestly does beggar the question WHY ?

 

Bigger, wider, heavier caravans all need bigger, more powerful and more thirsty tow cars none of which is good for our collective carbon footprint.

 

In no way shape or form am I 'greeny', but year on year vans do appear to be getting bigger and yet our actual needs are constant.

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Hi

 

I totally agree - get the extra width if you can.

 

There used to be regulations about towing caravans over a certain width but according to Mr Google and Mrs MSN, this appears no longer the case.

 

See this link

 

http://www. c4caravans. com/blog/tag/caravan-law-changes

 

Russell

Online blog and travels, although sometimes there is a lack of travel due to work!

 

It's an uncharted sea, it's an unopened door but you've got to reach out and you've got to explore.

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while at the caravan show last year I noticed a few heavy built people looking at vans, they had to view it from through the window as they didn't actualy fit through the door,I remember one man saying he wished they made some with wider doors, so they could get away when they wanted to, now ok I was a bit naughty and had a wee giggle at them not fitting through the door,but on the way home I remember feeling sorry for them,ok they were obese and I don't know the reasons behind their obesity but I thought it unfortunate that heavy people were missing out on caravanning,some through no fault of their own. Which got me thinking while reading this post,do all caravan manufacturers make van doors to the same specifications or can they be adapted for the customer.

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At the NEC last week two caravans impressed me, for their layouts and spaciousness, the Adria Astella and the Hobby Prestige. Of course the reason for this was their wider body, at 2. 5m. It is amazing how much they can fit into that extra 20cm. Winding country lanes in Devon and single tracks in the Highlands aside, are they really that much more difficult to tow on British roads? Given that I do most of my towing on main roads and leave the minor roads for exploring once on site, I feel that extra 6 inches would be ok. What do you think? Has any of you any experience of towing the wider body?

 

Hi nsbj. When we stepped up from our 1992 Fleetwood Colchester at 7'2" to our 2001 Elddis Crusader SuperSirocco we went longer by almost 20" and 2" wider. After the first half hour it was less of an issue,since then I have extended my Smat Nord mirrors in order to give me a view of the rear lower corners and not just down the side.

The proposal of towing legal at 2. 5meters will add onto the current 74" an extra 10. 5",that is why the vans look so huge and they are also longer when it comes to the Top End of the ranges. The 1012 Hobby Premium is a Dance Hall on tyres.

The extra width would mean an American Truck or Commercial Vehicle, also consider that they are anything up-to 9. 5meters shipping length.

Even the wider body (2. 5meter) and UK maximum tow-able length on a large Estate Car (Chrysler 300C Touring) would require mirrors that would extend so far out that they would flap on motorways and fast trunk routes.

I would bet that we will never see 2. 5mtr caravans as a 'Home Made' product here in the UK. Re-tooling & production line replacement/alterations would see that off.

Life in general can be a journey of chance with some winners and sadly some losers. Your outfit can never be left to chance. A short-while carrying out essential checks can ensure a long-time of happy & safe caravanning for all concerned.
Ignorance can often be bliss but is certainly not an excuse and when continually disregarded they can be totally disastrous for oneself and the innocent parties.

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while at the caravan show last year I noticed a few heavy built people looking at vans, they had to view it from through the window as they didn't actualy fit through the door,I remember one man saying he wished they made some with wider doors, so they could get away when they wanted to, now ok I was a bit naughty and had a wee giggle at them not fitting through the door,but on the way home I remember feeling sorry for them,ok they were obese and I don't know the reasons behind their obesity but I thought it unfortunate that heavy people were missing out on caravanning,some through no fault of their own. Which got me thinking while reading this post,do all caravan manufacturers make van doors to the same specifications or can they be adapted for the customer.

 

Hi daisymaisy. Larger and rotund people whether medical or otherwise miss out on a great many things in life,not least of all, rush of passion and a romp in the top bunk. Getting into the caravan/motor-home is only the first hurdle.

Seriously though, built in shower cubicles and loo & wash-room & also loo/wash-room facilities can be challenging for some.

I am only 4' 10" and a slim-ish 68kgs (10st 12lbs) and my elbows need controlling and I cannot bend down in our circular shower. I have had Total Left Knee replacement and have limited ability to bring my leg up to wash the lower limb so I have to use a Luffer type long-handled brush.

Life in general can be a journey of chance with some winners and sadly some losers. Your outfit can never be left to chance. A short-while carrying out essential checks can ensure a long-time of happy & safe caravanning for all concerned.
Ignorance can often be bliss but is certainly not an excuse and when continually disregarded they can be totally disastrous for oneself and the innocent parties.

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Hi all,

In 2001 we purchased our first of five T. E. C. caravan 7'6" wide, which was legal but wider than the norm ( UK van ) it also had a fixed bed, all our friends loved the extra " roominess "inside but weren't convinced about the bed, nowadays a fixed bed is the norm. Of the six Continental 'vans I've owned one was a T. E. C. Weltbummler 560 at 2. 5 m wide which at the time was not totally legal on British roads, I pulled that quiet comfortably and safely all over France and the Alps behind my trusted old Volvo 945 diesel. So to some up, I do believe that with the towcars of today the extra width does not pose a problem. Catch ya later,indoors.

NB; Note to Traveling Rooster, the same was said before the legal width went up from 7'4" to 7'6". There will allways be the customer that prefers an Eriba Puck or Jetstream,as good a 'van as they are, but they are in the minority.

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Hi all,

In 2001 we purchased our first of five T. E. C. caravan 7'6" wide, which was legal but wider than the norm ( UK van ) it also had a fixed bed, all our friends loved the extra " roominess "inside but weren't convinced about the bed, nowadays a fixed bed is the norm. Of the six Continental 'vans I've owned one was a T. E. C. Weltbummler 560 at 2. 5 m wide which at the time was not totally legal on British roads, I pulled that quiet comfortably and safely all over France and the Alps behind my trusted old Volvo 945 diesel. So to some up, I do believe that with the towcars of today the extra width does not pose a problem. Catch ya later,indoors.

NB; Note to Traveling Rooster, the same was said before the legal width went up from 7'4" to 7'6". There will allways be the customer that prefers an Eriba Puck or Jetstream,as good a 'van as they are, but they are in the minority.

 

Hi indoors. I myself am not anti-2. 5metre,quite the contrary I would relish one but it is the other aspects of owning,towing,sitting and having to consider a much larger vehicle to use what is to us an occasional and infrequent pleasure.

When we up-sticks and move to the Costa Blanca region then it would be a very viable option.

Our current van is one of the longest internal lengths that is made here in the UK,yes I know that length is not everything!!! in a caravan.

I am currently working on a project to maximise the maximum permitted tow-able length with all of the now quite ground breaking single axle options on the market,there are two manufacturers that are vying for longest twin axles at present, the difference however is only quite small.

The need for lighter & yet good & more usable sized family vans and ones that could be utilised into later life I think could become the next 'We need to look at this' consideration.

Life in general can be a journey of chance with some winners and sadly some losers. Your outfit can never be left to chance. A short-while carrying out essential checks can ensure a long-time of happy & safe caravanning for all concerned.
Ignorance can often be bliss but is certainly not an excuse and when continually disregarded they can be totally disastrous for oneself and the innocent parties.

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while at the caravan show last year I noticed a few heavy built people looking at vans, they had to view it from through the window as they didn't actualy fit through the door,I remember one man saying he wished they made some with wider doors, so they could get away when they wanted to, now ok I was a bit naughty and had a wee giggle at them not fitting through the door,but on the way home I remember feeling sorry for them,ok they were obese and I don't know the reasons behind their obesity but I thought it unfortunate that heavy people were missing out on caravanning,some through no fault of their own. Which got me thinking while reading this post,do all caravan manufacturers make van doors to the same specifications or can they be adapted for the customer.

 

Morning DM

 

Caravans can be adapted for wheelchair users as well.

 

http://www. coachbuiltgb. co. uk/Home. aspx/DisabledAdaptations

 

HTH.

 

Regards.

 

Col

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while at the caravan show last year I noticed a few heavy built people looking at vans, they had to view it from through the window as they didn't actualy fit through the door,I remember one man saying he wished they made some with wider doors, so they could get away when they wanted to, now ok I was a bit naughty and had a wee giggle at them not fitting through the door,but on the way home I remember feeling sorry for them,ok they were obese and I don't know the reasons behind their obesity but I thought it unfortunate that heavy people were missing out on caravanning,some through no fault of their own. Which got me thinking while reading this post,do all caravan manufacturers make van doors to the same specifications or can they be adapted for the customer.

 

 

Its not only the doors but the things like Seating areas and Beds and bunks are made to a standard for a lighter frame person .

 

I find most caravan beds you only have to roll over and the slats underneath the mattress fall out.

 

 

Dave

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Must be bad for them on aircraft, also I would not want to be sitting next to a "large" person on a flight especially in cattle class!

Surprised Ryanair has'nt though of weighing passengers and charging by weight!Don't give them ideas!!

 

We went on a cruise a few years ago, there was a very obese man on the ship (quite young too- so probably a short life expectancy)

He had to be pushed in a wheelchair because he could not walk far and would not fit through the security gateway device!

 

We were all dreading being in the same row of seats as him-he must have had to go in first class or the hold as he would not fit in a normal seat!

 

 

A fellow passenger said the guy spent virtually all day eating-and on a cruise you can eat!

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On our local BBC Look North programme last night (wed) there was a really streamlined caravan. looked nice & its painted to match your car, but costs £40K. Dont know make.

 

The thing was though it looked really narrow. Knees were well together of the folk sat on the front seats.

Coachman Pastiche tugged by Mazda CX-7, Wine supplied by Sainsburys & sunday Times wine Club.

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Must be bad for them on aircraft, also I would not want to be sitting next to a "large" person on a flight especially in cattle class!

Surprised Ryanair has'nt though of weighing passengers and charging by weight!Don't give them ideas!!

 

 

 

Weight of passenger has bought down jets !!! .

Might sound silly but weighing passengers is a good thing for safety as a few years ago a air passenger jet crashed because of the weight of the passengers estimating passengers weights had not changed over the years to come in line with the weight of passengers today .

 

 

http://en. wikipedia. ...est_Flight_5481

 

Also you have to pay for excess baggage but a overweight passenger can fly for the same price as a passenger half the weight ? Fuel surcharges for flights should be based on your weight .

 

 

Towing a 2. 5 caravan is not the only problem it is until the descrimination of not allowing german caravans on some sites is stopped. :angry:

 

Cut and pasted from a web site .

 

30. We do not allow Hobby or Tabbert caravans,

 

Dave

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We went on a helicopter trip to the Grand Canyon, they did weigh each passenger and allocate certain noumbers to each aurcraft and sit front or rear. Important in a small helicopter in hot and high conditions. Awesome trip though!

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On our local BBC Look North programme last night (wed) there was a really streamlined caravan. looked nice & its painted to match your car, but costs £40K. Dont know make.

 

The thing was though it looked really narrow. Knees were well together of the folk sat on the front seats.

 

Hi prottera. The company is a Motormome builer and involved in general building. They are IH Motorhomes,the finished product is very like a Voyager. Gordon helped me out with a post some weeks ago when I started a topic of about the Future of Caravan Aerodynamics.

It is a dead ringer for a prototype shot that I 'I spy' spotted some years ago in Lancashire.

Life in general can be a journey of chance with some winners and sadly some losers. Your outfit can never be left to chance. A short-while carrying out essential checks can ensure a long-time of happy & safe caravanning for all concerned.
Ignorance can often be bliss but is certainly not an excuse and when continually disregarded they can be totally disastrous for oneself and the innocent parties.

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On our local BBC Look North programme last night (wed) there was a really streamlined caravan. looked nice & its painted to match your car, but costs £40K. Dont know make.

 

The thing was though it looked really narrow. Knees were well together of the folk sat on the front seats.

 

Saw it as well . The caravan shown was the Monopod.

 

http://ihleisure. com/

 

Regards.

Col

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Saw it as well . The caravan shown was the Monopod.

 

http://ihleisure. com/

 

Regards.

Col

 

Hi Col. The interior has a ring of the old Vanroyce or Vanmaster about it. I understand that some years ago the Vanroyce name was handed over to another manufacturer of a very similar quality/build of caravan!!!.

It is approx' the same internal length as our SuperSirocco but it looks a great deal less.

There would appear to be a lot of lost storage space at the front because of the 'helicopter' front.

The shower/shower tray arrangement seems a little odd,there surely must be some protection to all of that lovely fitted cabinetry.

Life in general can be a journey of chance with some winners and sadly some losers. Your outfit can never be left to chance. A short-while carrying out essential checks can ensure a long-time of happy & safe caravanning for all concerned.
Ignorance can often be bliss but is certainly not an excuse and when continually disregarded they can be totally disastrous for oneself and the innocent parties.

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Saw it as well . The caravan shown was the Monopod.

 

http://ihleisure. com/

 

Regards.

Col

 

Hi again Col and anyone else interested (at all) in this rather unusual caravan. At the kind of money that it is ( I believe circa £41,000. 00) and I have only just spotted, that there is no provision for a awning I think my wish list still contains a Vanmaster Occasion bespoke built and BRITISH. The choice for the continent would still be the 2012 Hobby Premium,there is a great deal of van there for about the price of a top end Elddis or Buccaneer.

Life in general can be a journey of chance with some winners and sadly some losers. Your outfit can never be left to chance. A short-while carrying out essential checks can ensure a long-time of happy & safe caravanning for all concerned.
Ignorance can often be bliss but is certainly not an excuse and when continually disregarded they can be totally disastrous for oneself and the innocent parties.

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Hi again Col and anyone else interested (at all) in this rather unusual caravan. At the kind of money that it is ( I believe circa £41,000. 00) and I have only just spotted, that there is no provision for a awning I think my wish list still contains a Vanmaster Occasion bespoke built and BRITISH. The choice for the continent would still be the 2012 Hobby Premium,there is a great deal of van there for about the price of a top end Elddis or Buccaneer.

 

 

With German caravans the price quoted are for a basic model and everything else is built on extras and some times are not quoted with VAT (Germany 19%) . If you go to the German dealer sites you can get lists of the optional extras for their vans . The elddis and Bucaneer will come even come with a 12 v battery the German wont .

 

If I remember German caravans like Hobby vans were a good price as being 8 ft were not a tourer and classed as Homes and were VAT exempt but the towing width allowance altered it .

 

Dave

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Whilst the width limit on caravans has been brought in line with Europe at 2. 5m, in the UK it is still limited by a body length of 7mtrs, so many of the 2. 5m wide vans are too long and must be towed by a vehicle of 3500kg or more

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I think that will be changing soon to 8 m to come in line with EU . The length difference is not only on the road but has other problems .

 

http://www. hmrc. gov. uk/briefs/vat/brief2010. htm

 

If your stopped towing a caravan over 7mt on the road could you be nicked for towing over the legal length and could you also be nicked for tax evasion also ?

 

 

 

Dave

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I think that will be changing soon to 8 m to come in line with EU . The length difference is not only on the road but has other problems .

 

http://www. hmrc. gov. ...t/brief2010. htm

 

 

Dave

 

Hi Dave. Why is it that the body length is the criteria for maximum legal towing length?.

The ferries want to know the shipping length. Also the shipping length is surely a more important a detail than the body length after all is said and done it is the rectangular surface area that is taken up on the road not just the body length and width.

Life in general can be a journey of chance with some winners and sadly some losers. Your outfit can never be left to chance. A short-while carrying out essential checks can ensure a long-time of happy & safe caravanning for all concerned.
Ignorance can often be bliss but is certainly not an excuse and when continually disregarded they can be totally disastrous for oneself and the innocent parties.

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You can legally tow upto outfit length of 18m and 2. 55 m wide now so altering a the trailer length a metre is not a big deal . It should be based on shipping length as you say for caravans .

 

 

Dave

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