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Remember The Windslammer?


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Does anyone remember the old 'Windslammer'? This was a large-ish sheet of lightweight steel which was attached to the towcar's roof-rack/rails and the idea was to position its angle such that it would deflect the airflow over the top of the caravan at speed, thus giving better fuel economy - similar to the air deflectors/spoilers seen on the roofs of HGV's. Anyway, did these really work? Does anyone still use them? I think that since most modern 'vans have a suitably aerodynamic profile, this makes any air deflection redundant perhaps.

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That takes me back to when my parents used on on their old Opel estate, and that was some time ago. Used to be my job to fit/remove it when we pitched up. That would have been when I was about 10 or 12, so it would have been at least 20 years ago or even more. .. Dad used it everytime he towed, so it must have been some use!!!

 

Havent seen anything like it recently. I suppose my roofbox does a similar job these days.

 

Not meaning to start a different thread, but does any one remember a "Retro Visor" (I think thats what it was called), dad used to have one of these as well.

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Not meaning to start a different thread, but does any one remember a "Retro Visor" (I think thats what it was called), dad used to have one of these as well.

38725[/snapback]

 

 

The Retrovisor is a periscope fitted to the top of the windscreen with suction cups and allows the driver to see out over the top of a caravan when towingscope.gif

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The Retrovisor is a periscope fitted to the top of the windscreen with suction cups and allows the driver to see out over the top of a  caravan when towingscope.gif

38736[/snapback]

 

 

John,

 

I can see that it may have a use but does it protrude above the towcar roofline more than 8 inches or so, (the photo seems to show it around this height), My van roof is well over 2 feet higher than the roof of my car so would the Retrovisor be any use? :D I'm not knocking it though I just wondered.

 

navigator

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think its used to see through van  not over it

38751[/snapback]

Exactly so, you could see right through the caravan! Obviously not a fantastic view of the road behind, but Dad found it useful. I think it was useful when our grandparents were following us as it was easy to see if their caravan was behind us.

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Exactly so, you could see right through the caravan! 

38839[/snapback]

 

I remember, and did in fact use both of these devices. Most of the caravans dating from these years had one-piece, clear glass windows, front and back so the retrovisor gave a better view through the van than a modern caravan would.

Citroen C5-X7 Tourer+Avondale Rialto 480/2
https://jondogoescaravanning.com

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I remember, and did in fact use both of these devices.   Most of the caravans dating from these years had one-piece, clear glass windows, front and back so the retrovisor gave a better view through the van than a modern caravan would.

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I trawled the net some time ago, looking for support for a Windslammer type of gadget . I did find a University somewhere in the UK who had spent a year investigating the theory of directing wind resistance over the caravan. Their conclusion was that the Windslammer type of thingy would probably make matters worse, and that the only aid would be a deflector sticking up at the rear of the caravan on the roofline. Regards Len

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They still use them but not over here much,

 

but they have got better see here

 

and here

Paul B

. .......Mondeo Estate & Elddis Avanté 505 (Tobago)

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Their conclusion was that the Windslammer type of thingy would probably make matters worse

Thanks for that useful snippet, Rascal - looks like they died a death then. :(

 

Paul - one of those American thingies HAS to be worth it for the dreaded "bug splatter" ! ! ! :lol:

 

Kind regards,

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Saw many a motor with the windslammer and its clones fitted when not towing . . so very definately using far more petrol (no diesel then) than it could possibly have saved when the van was on :rolleyes:

 

Talking of old gadgets . . there was also the "Wensydel Aidatow" which was a short two wheeled trailer between the car and the van to take the noseweight if the van . . there was a courtcase "towing two trailers" but it was thrown out . . judge said "it is not a trailer in its own right, but is an aid to towing"

 

 

was a swine if trying to reverse the outfit

 

the was also an anti snake stabiliser consisting of a wheel below the draw bar, fixed, with no castor action, and sprung to take the noseweight.

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Does anyone remember the old 'Windslammer'? This was a large-ish sheet of lightweight steel which was attached to the towcar's roof-rack/rails and the idea was to position its angle such that it would deflect the airflow over the top of the caravan at speed, thus giving better fuel economy - similar to the air deflectors/spoilers seen on the roofs of HGV's. Anyway, did these really work? Does anyone still use them? I think that since most modern 'vans have a suitably aerodynamic profile, this makes any air deflection redundant perhaps.

38684[/snapback]

Oh Yes!

I still have one in the garage - although it's not seen the light of day for many years. It must have had some small effect as it certainly used to reduce the number of flys splattered on the caravan front after a long tow. I can't say that I noticed any appreciable improvement in fuel economy though, despite mounting the Windslammer at the rear of the estate car roof, and experimenting with various angles of inclination.

Cheers,

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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  • 2 weeks later...

The Windslammer could work but only when fitted right at the back of a slab-tailed estate, like the Volvo 145/240.

 

Research at Bath University, showed that in all other cases that stability was reduced, not improved.

 

 

I used one for a while, in the 80's, on my Escort Mk2 saloon but always turned the Windslammer down when not towing. I never noticed any benefit.

 

A tail spoiler on the caravan also reduces stability. Most modern caravans have them as a fashion statement, not from wind-tunnel testing.

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"A tail spoiler on the caravan also reduces stability. Most modern caravans have them as a fashion statement, not from wind-tunnel testing." :o

 

now you are bringing back memories from my college years, :blink: but you're right.

 

Also when windslammers were on the go, caravans had a much flatter front, now caravans are shaped so that the wind forces them down to road.

It was found that the turbulence that wind slammers created, made some caravans unstable.

Some later types were made of mesh just to direct the air over the front of the van, and fitted to bike racks fastened to the towbar, these had much less turbulence, but didn't catch on because of the unknown extra weight this put on the towbar :huh:

Paul B

. .......Mondeo Estate & Elddis Avanté 505 (Tobago)

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Does anyone remember the old 'Windslammer'? This was a large-ish sheet of lightweight steel which was attached to the towcar's roof-rack/rails and the idea was to position its angle such that it would deflect the airflow over the top of the caravan at speed, thus giving better fuel economy - similar to the air deflectors/spoilers seen on the roofs of HGV's. Anyway, did these really work? Does anyone still use them? I think that since most modern 'vans have a suitably aerodynamic profile, this makes any air deflection redundant perhaps.

38684[/snapback]

 

I have still got a Windslammer" if anybody wants one. I even air brushed a picture of my car and caravan on it but I don't use it now. :rolleyes: It was last used on an 86 Sierra estate and clamped to the gutter rails. Modern cars don't have gutters.

 

I can remember being told not to set it too high as it would lead to instability in the van. You should still be able to see a few squashed flies at the top of the front of the van for it to be set correctly. As somebody said modern vans are more aerodynamic these days and not slab fronted like the older ones.

 

Bob R

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Does anyone still have one of those perspex vee shaped bug deflectors that fitted on the front of the car's bonnet to keep the bugs off the windscreen?

41206[/snapback]

Sadly yes. That was in the days when Rovers had a small perspex prism protruding just above the front wing to confirm the sidelights were working. Carry on at this rate and we'll be back to the man with the red flag in front of cars. LOL

Like bobren55, my windslammer is also available if anyone wants to try it.

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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Like bobren55, my windslammer is also available if anyone wants to try it.

Gordon.

41690[/snapback]

 

Hi Gordon

Ah yes!! but does yours have an airbrushed picture of a car and caravan on it?? :)

It makes all the difference. :blink:

 

Bob R

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Hi Gordon

Ah yes!! but does yours have an airbrushed picture of a car and caravan on it?? smile.gif

It makes all the difference. blink.gif

Bob R

41705[/snapback]

 

Funny you should ask but. ..

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

. ..No. It is however white (not the standard black) and therefore much "lighter" than any "picture" rolleyes.gif hmmmm.

Cheers,

Gordon.

 

Volvo - Olympus.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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