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Twin Axle Issues?


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I hope to be upgrading my caravan soon and Ive seen a couple of twin axle caravans that I like.

 

I love the extra space that twin axle caravans provide, but are there any negatives that I should be aware of.

 

The few I can imagine are as follows.

 

1) Difficult to manoeuvre by hand.

2) Fitting a mover will be expensive.

3) Perhaps getting a large enough pitch at a busy site might be an issue?

 

Should I be considering any other factors? Have I talked myself out of one already? :wacko:

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I hope to be upgrading my caravan soon and Ive seen a couple of twin axle caravans that I like.

 

I love the extra space that twin axle caravans provide, but are there any negatives that I should be aware of.

 

The few I can imagine are as follows.

 

1) Difficult to manoeuvre by hand.

2) Fitting a mover will be expensive.

3) Perhaps getting a large enough pitch at a busy site might be an issue?

 

Should I be considering any other factors? Have I talked myself out of one already? :wacko:

 

 

Well, having had the last two years with a Twin-Axle Fleetwood, I can certainly say that it was a great choice. As to your worries 1-3

1. as long as you practice your manouvering and have a large enough towcar or 4x4 manouvering will be no problem.

 

2. Never needed one, as i fitted a front towbar (Watling) and have only needed to use it a couple of times.

 

3. Unless you go for a 'romany' type XL sized caravan, then pitching should be no problem. There are plenty of sites with large pitches, and even been on CLs with plenty of space. Normandy last year was a good trip.

 

Worth it for the space alone.

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We have travelled Europe for the last 5 years with a twin axle and never had a problem. Have Motor Mover but very rarely have to use it as twins are easier to reverse than single axles. Never had a problem in the UK either.

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This is my first year with a caravan and I opted for a twin axle. I got a motor mover as it is needed where I store it. But as yet I have not needed it on site as I was a hgv driver for too long to remember and reversing is a doddle. The main reason I got one was it is a lot more stable when towing and it just follows the car plus the extra room is worth it.

 

But if you need to move it by hand a twin axle can be awkward to swivel in a tight location. But a motor mover is helpful.

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Servicing is dearer, as is storage

 

And tyre costs are dearer when it's time to replace them.

 

As for moving it by hand, unless you're doing nothing more than moving it backwards or forwards forget it!

 

Not as straightforward to level on uneven ground as a single, but not impossible!

2021 Swift Sienna Super 4SB

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tyre costs are not that bad because the wieght is spread across 4 wheels so not such a high load rating required

if you raise the front axle up on the jockey wheel you can turn the caravan easier

 

i have travelled across europe and no problems with a twin axle i would rather have 4 sets of brakees 4 wheels on a 1800kgs trailer

and if you can afford a twin axle whats a £100 on 2 tyres its less then 2 tanks of fuel on the correct tow car

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I've used twin axle caravans since 1993, and found them to be no different from a single, with the exception that there is generally more space inside, and a greater payload available.

 

I can't recall ever having to move a twin by hand, although I have chosen to on occasions. Back and forth is no different from a single, other than the increased weight, and turning is fine by hand with two people, one pushing, the other steering by pushing sideways on a corner.

 

I have never found the increased size to be a problem in finding a pitch, although I've certainly had to reverse it into some interesting locations. The trick when placing the caravan on a pitch is to remember that it does not matter where the towcar ends up as that will be unhitched and moved, so long as the caravan is in position. Beware too on some CLs and CSs as access can at times be restrictive. There are all sorts of stories about twins not being allowed on French sites, but this is not something I have come up against as I always book ahead and ensure the site knows we have a twin axle caravan.

 

Leveling is no different from a single axle caravan. I personally chose to use a single long wedge under the wheels, although I know others use two short wedges in various configurations, or a pair of wheel jacks. On soft ground, I also place a board under the wheels not being lifted, to prevent them sinking. The same board can be used under the large wedge for additional lift on extreme slopes. Once level side-to-side, as with any caravan, fore and aft leveling is achieved by adjusting the the jockey wheel.

 

As highlighted earlier, the tyres often do not need to have such a high load index, since the weight is distributed over four wheels, so they tend to cost less, however the rear pair do scrub more on corners and so their useful life is shorter than those on the front axle. I have had to replace worn out tyres on twin axle caravans after about three years use, whereas I have only ever replaced tyres on single axle caravans because of their age.

 

I feel that towing stability is better with a twin, although you will have to get used to the increased pitching motion as the two axles cross a hole or lump in the road, however this in my opinion is more than compensated for by the increased lateral stability.

Have I talked myself out of one already? :wacko:
I hope not :)

Enjoy. ....

Gordon.

Levelling a Leda Pentland Twin in 1994.jpg

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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When we got back into caravanning after a 25 year layoff, I pondered long and hard as to whether we went down the single axle or twin axle route mainly because at that time I had not seen many twin axles around.

 

We had the tow car and storage space for either.

 

I thought that they were a rarity on the roads due to their size, I was wrong, I had not done my homework properly, there are a great many.

 

I decided on the twin axle route and can tell you that had I have gone single axle, after seeing all of the twin axles on sites after and just how people with them never seemed to struggle, it would not have been long before I converted to a twin.

 

Never had any problems with towing but do have the right type of car.

 

Twin axles track exceptionally well and I can say that I have towed a couple of large singles for fiends and found that with all the correct loading etc. that twin axles feel relatively more stable in like for like situations but as I say, the car has to be right and in my case the ratio is circa 80%.

 

The only reason I would go back to a single at the moment would be if I could not continue to 'financially support' my towing device! :(

 

PS. ...Just noticed Gordon's post, would agree with all that he says.

 Stay safe ~ Griff    :ph34r:

Wheels at the front ~ Green Oval Towing Machine

Wheels at the back ~ 4 of ‘em

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I hope to be upgrading my caravan soon and Ive seen a couple of twin axle caravans that I like.

 

I love the extra space that twin axle caravans provide, but are there any negatives that I should be aware of.

 

The few I can imagine are as follows.

 

1) Difficult to manoeuvre by hand.

2) Fitting a mover will be expensive.

3) Perhaps getting a large enough pitch at a busy site might be an issue?

 

Should I be considering any other factors? Have I talked myself out of one already? :wacko:

I'm on my second twin axle van and in answer to your questions-

 

1) They are almost impossible to move by hand.

 

2) If you have a mover fitted go for the 4 wheel drive option. Yes they are expensive but i've had both 2 and 4 wheel type and the 2 wheel type was worse than useless and a waste of money.

 

3) Never had a problem with pitch sizes on any site.

 

IMO The weight and the fact that its got two axles makes the TA van the most stable outfit i,ve ever towed when coupled too a heavy 4x4.

 

peter.

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We never have any problems moving our TA by hand, although it is pretty much limited to back & forwards. At home on our very flat drive. I pull it out and push it back on my own sometimes.

 

We have never been refused access to a site or had a problem getting a pitch. Bear in mind the fact that there are SA vans that are just as long.

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Thanks for you help. It seems that the twin axle owners are very happy with their caravans. At least I now know not to exclude them when choosing my next caravan. .

 

leadfarmer

how can you not want one of these babies

 

 

th_caravan.jpg?t=1320140117th_IMGP0651.jpg

 

Your right TongG, beautiful looking caravan.

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I hope to be upgrading my caravan soon and Ive seen a couple of twin axle caravans that I like.

 

I love the extra space that twin axle caravans provide, but are there any negatives that I should be aware of.

 

The few I can imagine are as follows.

 

1) Difficult to manoeuvre by hand.

2) Fitting a mover will be expensive.

3) Perhaps getting a large enough pitch at a busy site might be an issue?

 

Should I be considering any other factors? Have I talked myself out of one already? :wacko:

None of the above are an issue. What is an issue is aligning both Alko locks and side levelling. We both have disabilities but we managed. Admittedly we do not engage both ALKO locks but use one and a sold secure wheel clamp.

Sometimes I pretend to be normal, but it gets boring so I go back to being me.

Jeep Grand Cherokee Ltd 3. 0L auto

Lunar Delta TI

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Hi

 

As a non caravanner but a motorhome, I make the point that twin axles are not welcome on some sites overseas and other sites charge a premium.

 

If you look at this website for example you will see what I mean about a premium. I refused to book in total disgust.

 

www. campingparis. fr

 

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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We have toured overseas for a number of years and never been refused entry in France or Spain. ....

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Hi

As a non caravanner but a motorhome, I make the point that twin axles are not welcome on some sites overseas and other sites charge a premium.

If you look at this website for example you will see what I mean about a premium. I refused to book in total disgust.

www. campingparis. fr

Russell

Well I guess it's their site so they can set the rules they please, but to double the pitch price just because the caravan has four wheels is a bit OTT. There again if they don't want twins, that's a good way of keeping them away. I am sure it is done to deter the nomads, but like you, I would not use a site with those rules, whether I was using a twin axle or not, simply because I do not like to see this kind of discrimination. On the other hand, we are talking about Parisiens, and they certainly have a different attitude from the rest of the French.

Gordon.

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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I'm dragging a single axle van so can't be sure but I think I'm correct in saying motorway tolls are higher. Is that the case in France for example?

Santa Fe 7 Seater Premium Manual towing Swift Eccles 480 plated to 1500 kg. 

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Gordon

 

Not only the extra fee for twin axle, but they wanted extra on top of the extra as my van is over 3500kg!

 

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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Hi

 

As a non caravanner but a motorhome, I make the point that twin axles are not welcome on some sites overseas and other sites charge a premium.

 

If you look at this website for example you will see what I mean about a premium. I refused to book in total disgust.

 

www. campingparis. fr

 

Russell

Hi Russell, We have stayed at this site in the distant past and I certainly would not rush to stay there again. When we stayed it was not the cleanest of sites on all fronts and I am sure that the high premium is only justified by it's location.

 

To John b 45

All caravans on the Autoroute are charge within category 2.

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We have toured overseas for a number of years and never been refused entry in France or Spain. ....

neither have I

Tony G

Kia Sorrento 2. 5 CDi 59 plate Towing 2011 Swift Conqueror 645

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Gordon

 

Not only the extra fee for twin axle, but they wanted extra on top of the extra as my van is over 3500kg!

 

Russell

Sounds like the perfect way to deter visitors! They'd probably have a heart attack if I turned up with our RV then ;)

Gordon.

RV outfit.jpg

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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More so if towing a car! :lol:

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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After 5 2/3 month Trips to Europe, towing a twin axle, we have never been refused a pitch on any site. I always email ahead mind you to check but never been refused. We have never paid any extra toll in any country for twin except for Italy where you pay on how many axle's you have. Have visited 10 countries in Europe.

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Last 2 vans have been Twins and I love them, never had a problem with pitches in europe.

 

As someone has already said its the cost of running the towcar the can be an issue for some. I also love that and it won't be getting changed any time soon.

 

When driving through europe last year our freinds who have the same towcar as us with a new Adria on the back which was a single axle, the Adria was all over the place. Don't know how Adria get away with some of their vans being single axles due to there length and weight.

 

:)

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As said I would not be without a Mover for moving my Twin . I find my axle mover which is not a 4wheel drive is powerful enough to move my van up kerbs and slopes with no problem . Twins a larger and heavier and require a larger tow vehicle .

 

 

 

Dave

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