[MH-list] What choice of well-equipped 4WD campervan?


Ernest <ernb@...>
 

On 2/11/08 01:07, "Pet Human" <pethuman@gmail.com> wrote:

However, nearly all of these panel van conversions share a problem
common to the coachbuilts, in that they are front-wheel drive. Great on
the road, great for providing a low floor inside, but pretty useless in
slippery conditions. I have tried one, and it struggled on wet grass; a
friend camping in France in October watched several of them getting
stuck when they tried to move off flat grass pitches ... and since I
don't intend to make much use of campsites, that's no good for me.
I have a Sprinter coachbuilt with a permanent double bed, L shaped kitchen,
shower and a 2 seater dinette. I solo in it most of the time, and I have
wildcamped and used aires for over 5 years. I have only ever been stuck
once. At a car boot on Bath race course.

You do not mention any spending limits or budgets, but if you have one, a
4WD is going to make a hell of a dent in it and significantly restrict the
range of suitable vans. For what? As insurance against a 1 in 1,000 chance
of being stuck in the mud, when it could go to providing a few creature
comforts. Believe you me, you will need one or two on the long, cold nights
of winter. Here we are talking about 'sitting in a box' for maybe 16 hours.

Buy yourself a 2nd hand Tirfor from someone like this: -

http://tinyurl.com/5nmwlm

They are easy to use, and I am sure the vendor would show you how to operate
one safely.

As to insulation, when I started looking, I was warned against British vans,
which, generally speaking, are designed for summer use. There was one
incident reported in the MH press where two journalists nearly died of
hyperthermia in a well known British marque, while road testing it in the
Alps.

To end, I second Andy's advice and take a look at www.mobile.de.

Good luck.
--
ErnB
Bristol


bernardblackmore
 

As Ern says 4WD not the complete answer, I drove into the field next door to
collect my hedgetrimings last week with a Nissan Navara HC which has wide
wheels in low 4WD with a Ifor Williams trailer on the back and guess what I
got stuck in a wet spot.
I went to the motorhome locker and out with the yellow plastic grip mats
jammed them in front of all four wheels and away we went.
I have a 7 meter A class on a Fiat and never use sites as I live in France
but this was the first time the grip mats had been used. Park sensible and
you will have very few problems, If I was to park on softish terrain I would
get her indoors to put the grip mats under the drive wheels before parking
for the night remembering to pin them to the ground through the hole
provided.

Kind regards to all

Bernard
Lestrevet Plage, Plomodiern 29550, Finistere, France.

2008/11/3 Ernest <ernb@supanet.com>

On 2/11/08 01:07, "Pet Human" <pethuman@gmail.com <pethuman%40gmail.com>>
wrote:

However, nearly all of these panel van conversions share a problem
common to the coachbuilts, in that they are front-wheel drive. Great on
the road, great for providing a low floor inside, but pretty useless in
slippery conditions. I have tried one, and it struggled on wet grass; a
friend camping in France in October watched several of them getting
stuck when they tried to move off flat grass pitches ... and since I
don't intend to make much use of campsites, that's no good for me.
I have a Sprinter coachbuilt with a permanent double bed, L shaped kitchen,
shower and a 2 seater dinette. I solo in it most of the time, and I have
wildcamped and used aires for over 5 years. I have only ever been stuck
once. At a car boot on Bath race course.

You do not mention any spending limits or budgets, but if you have one, a
4WD is going to make a hell of a dent in it and significantly restrict the
range of suitable vans. For what? As insurance against a 1 in 1,000 chance
of being stuck in the mud, when it could go to providing a few creature
comforts. Believe you me, you will need one or two on the long, cold nights
of winter. Here we are talking about 'sitting in a box' for maybe 16 hours.

Buy yourself a 2nd hand Tirfor from someone like this: -

http://tinyurl.com/5nmwlm

They are easy to use, and I am sure the vendor would show you how to
operate
one safely.

As to insulation, when I started looking, I was warned against British
vans,
which, generally speaking, are designed for summer use. There was one
incident reported in the MH press where two journalists nearly died of
hyperthermia in a well known British marque, while road testing it in the
Alps.

To end, I second Andy's advice and take a look at www.mobile.de.

Good luck.
--
ErnB
Bristol


--
Bernard, Pamela and Bella Ti Kornog, Rte de Kergorz, Lestrevet Plage,
Plomdiern 29550, Finistere, France.


Reg <lists.reg@...>
 

Posted by: "Ron Sutton" ronvsutton@mac.com ronvsutton

I have seen (and been impressed by) the efforts of PRV, which I have
seen at shows and mentioned in Motorcaravan mags. They use Landrover
and Toyota 4WD chassis. I wonder if they keep in touch with their
customers and know (or facilitate) when they want to sell on.
PRV closed down about 5 -7 years ago. Their quality of work was very
good and ideal for a demountable to be used in summer for the odd
weekend. But their insulation was not as good as I later discovered on
German products.

Although operating from the same town as Land Rover (Solihull) they had
no connection with Land Rover. Interestingly, their main base vehicle
was Tata pickups, who now own Land Rover.

As for the other suggestions, like use a Tirfor, the OP is a lady on her
own (+dog) and having been trained in the use of Tirfors and used them
safely, I'd not recommend them for MH use.

They are very heavy, in part due to their use of a steel rope.

I had planed to buy one for our 4x4 MH, but discovered that the weight
of an electric winch with a plastic rope was a similar weight (we have a
very large payload, being well under 3,050KG UL). I would not have to
ever carry a Tirfor and store it. The bumper mounted winch however has
all it's weight at the very front of the vehicle - where else better on
a MH!!!

However a coil sprung Land Rover being a good 4x4, with diff-lock on the
third differential, and used correctly will be far superior. Other 4x2
part time 4x4, will often fail as they are driven into in 4x2 mode!
Getting out in 4x4 after the 4x2 has done the digging in, is not so
easy.

The Azalai is a good camper, it's dimensions are similar to mine. It
maybe ideal for the OP as it's plastic internal build would be ideal for
dogs and folk with muddy feet. But it's Thetford cupboard is not ideal
for regular use (no rude comments; please). It does however have the
advantage of being able to answer a knock on the outside door while in
use!!!

Insulation is again, summer only. The wife and I want winter luxury
even in Norway in winter so we bought a Tischer.

Reg


W3526602@...
 

In a message dated 04/11/2008 23:37:04 GMT Standard Time,
lists.reg@googlemail.com writes:

Getting out in 4x4 after the 4x2 has done the digging in, is not so
easy.



Hi,

The answer is not to dig in. Once you know you are in trouble, drop the
clutch. Then try to reverse out along your own tracks. But stop as soon as it
becomes obvious that you ain't going to move.

602


B WEBB <woodlake21rry@...>
 

When I was doing a lot with land rovers we used to carry some metal
grills that we could put down in front of, or behind, as appropriate,
with a length of wire attached to the vehicle so that when we got
moving we didn't have to go back for them , just pick them up when we
were on reasonable ground.

Cheers

Barry Webb

On 5 Nov 2008, at 07:21, W3526602@aol.com wrote:

The answer is not to dig in. Once you know you are in trouble, drop
the
clutch. Then try to reverse out along your own tracks. But stop as
soon as it
becomes obvious that you ain't going to move.


Don Madge <don.madge@...>
 

On Wed 05 November 2008 08:44 Barry wrote

When I was doing a lot with land rovers we used to carry some metal
grills that we could put down in front of, or behind, as appropriate,
with a length of wire attached to the vehicle so that when we got
moving we didn't have to go back for them , just pick them up when we
were on reasonable ground.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------
--
In the desert we used strips of PSP if and when we got stuck. Brilliant
stuff but a bit heavy for the average motorhome. Not sure how well they
would work in mud though.

Don


Ernest <ernb@...>
 

On 5/11/08 09:01, "Don Madge" <don.madge@tiscali.co.uk> wrote:

In the desert we used strips of PSP if and when we got stuck. Brilliant
stuff but a bit heavy for the average motorhome. Not sure how well they
would work in mud though.
I took the kids to watch the aeroplanes at Heathrow, and parked my Rover 90
on the wide grass verge along the A30. Along with a whole load of others.
Came time to get home for dinner and everyone was stuck in the mud. Some up
to their axles.

But it was in the good old days - and I was a lot younger. Took the spark
plugs out, put it in reverse and wound it out with the starting handle. I
still remember how easy it was.
--
ErnB
Bristol