You are logged in as a guest. 
  Home Forums Home  Search our Forums Search our Forums    Log in to the Forums Log in to the Forums  register Register on the Forums  

 Forums ->  Caravans -> Caravan Chat
Jump to page : First 1 Last
Format:  Go
Choosing the right Caravan
AuthorMessage
userWhiteCheyenneMan
Posted: 1 May 2014 1:32 PM
Subject: Choosing the right Caravan
 


Keeps coming back for more

Posts: 154
1002525
Location: Tenterden, Kent Hymervan 562 Silverline


Having just sold our Motorhome we’re now looking for a secondhand caravan. 85% of our car’s kerbweight is around the 1400kgs mark and we like the fixed bed layouts of Bailey Pageants and Elldiss and Lunar. But, of course there are many other alternatives out there.

My first question is: How old can we go? Okay, it’s a bit of a piece of string question, but we want something that is going to last quite a few years and I’m not interested in doing my own running repairs. I worry about talk of floor delamination, damp etc.. I’m not sure that we should go back farther than 2009 if we want many years life left in the van.

My second question is: Are there any makes that we should avoid or concentrate on? (Obviously this will attract mainly personal opinions, but I’m looking for reasoned choices). EU makes may be better made, but they tend to be too heavy.



Edited by WhiteCheyenneMan 2014-05-01 1:34 PM
userCliveH
Posted: 1 May 2014 5:41 PM
Subject: RE: Choosing the right Caravan
 
Lord of the posts

Posts: 6068
500010002525


Hi John

I have experience of Sterckman, Avondale and Bailey. All were good with no issues at all.

The one issue I have heard of with some manufacturers is that from circa 2005 onwards the manufacturing moved from drilling a pilot hole and then screwing the thing together to using screws with needle spikes that make their own hole.

Our Caravan Service engineer stated that as a result he saw a dramatic upturn in water ingress issues because these screws placed tension on what they went through and as a result splits appeared and the water gets in.

Obviously new construction techniques like Baileys Alu-tech totally overcome this issue.

Other issues our friends had with a brand new Bailey was the roof light not having the right spacers in the roof. This is caused by the production methods in the factory that pay the workers for speed of construction. If you leave out the spacers you can wack them out quicker.

The result for our friend was the roof being pulled down to a dramatic extent such that when it rained they had an extensive bird bath on their roof. We have a video clip of two pigeons having a lovely bath - splashing the water all over the place.

We checked the drop when it was dry and we found that the roof was pulled down over an inch and a quarter from the sides of the c'van. The drop was such that when the water bath was full edges of the clear plastic roof light were under water! - Obviously compromising ventilation.

Secondly they have experienced a algal bloom in the water and smell - the water on the roof really is like a small pond!

Thirdly - with the harsh winter we had year before last the water froze and lifted the seal of the roof-light.

They are not happy bunnies. Bailey only acted when water ingress was found - up until that point they did not give a damn.

So what we do now when looking at c'vans is check with a long straight edge (wooden beading) from one side of roof to the other adjacent to the roof-lights to see what dip exists. The experience has been quite sobering!

We love our fixed bed Wyoming - tho we are likely to do the opposite of what you have done as we are looking at MH's now. - but we are also considering a smaller c'van - easier for touring - and if we did this - we would NOT go for a Fixed Bed - it takes up too much room and simply becomes a dumping ground for clutter during the day.

We would go back to a layout we had with our Avondale where we had a front and rear lounge. If we wanted we made up the front bed and left it and ate, watched TV, read in the rear lounge or the awning.

In hindsight - having had both - the practically of the twin lounge set up outweighs the "luxury" of the fixed bed.

Hope this helps!



userWhiteCheyenneMan
Posted: 2 May 2014 9:56 AM
Subject: RE: Choosing the right Caravan
 


Keeps coming back for more

Posts: 154
1002525
Location: Tenterden, Kent Hymervan 562 Silverline


Wow, thank you Clive that's really useful and we'll give more thought to the fixed bed issue. Our Motorhome was a 25 footer with rear bathroom and fixed twin beds. The resulting lounge area was not big and it was difficult to stretch out to watch TV or to read. Any c'van we choose will address that issue, fixed bed or not! I will be checking all roofs with the greatest care! You only discover what your manufacturer and/or dealer are really like when you have a problem after purchase. We bought our M'home from Kent Motorhome Centre and they were very very friendly and supportive.
userips
Posted: 2 May 2014 10:53 AM
Subject: RE: Choosing the right Caravan
 


Epic contributor

Posts: 1853
10005001001001002525
Location: Lancashire


Hi
we did same as you last august, many reasons for it but we went back to a caravan.
We only wanted a small van as I don't see the point of a big one for two people anyway one thing I would say is that you get a heck of a lot more van for your money than a MH ours is small but top of the range with every conceivable extra fitted. Even at a mere 3.82m it feels much bigger than our 5.99 MH due to better use of space, it is a lot more comfortable in every way and no problem at all to tow as modern vans are a lot more stable than the old ones were.
Age I would say is irrelevant condition is more important but if you want an answer personally I would not buy over 3yrs old but I only ever buy new so that isn't really based on anything tangible.
As for what make I think its just a case of having a really good look at many makes models and be very very open minded on layout there are many of them and you may do like we have done in the past with the MH and that is become to blinkered on layout and possibly miss a trick.
Good luck with whatever you end up with I am off to hitch up for our weekend away.

PS
Forget all the nonsence about caravans taking ages to set up we have it down to about 10 mins with another 10 if we put porch awning up.
userWhiteCheyenneMan
Posted: 2 May 2014 11:32 AM
Subject: RE: Choosing the right Caravan
 


Keeps coming back for more

Posts: 154
1002525
Location: Tenterden, Kent Hymervan 562 Silverline


Thanks ips, I remember you on the M'home Forum! Yes, I've watched caravanners setting up and can't see that much difference with a Motorhome. Mind you, I'm sure we'll be quite slow at first!
userCliveH
Posted: 4 May 2014 4:58 PM
Subject: RE: Choosing the right Caravan
 
Lord of the posts

Posts: 6068
500010002525


One tip we found for caravan set up was to have a small battery drill with the long corner steady adapter in it

http://www.towsure.com/product/Corner_Steady_Socket_19mm_30cm

This makes setting up the van really easy and quick.

For years I used an old Draper 9.6V drill that was years old - but sadly in the end the batteries died and would not charge.

You do not need a lot of power - in fact I would suggest too much power is a bad thing as the corner steady's are just that - steady's - not for full blown adjustment.





Edited by CliveH 2014-05-04 4:58 PM
userWhiteCheyenneMan
Posted: 4 May 2014 6:13 PM
Subject: RE: Choosing the right Caravan
 


Keeps coming back for more

Posts: 154
1002525
Location: Tenterden, Kent Hymervan 562 Silverline


CliveH - 2014-05-04 4:58 PMOne tip we found for caravan set up was to have a small battery drill with the long corner steady adapter in it http://www.towsure.com/product/Corner_Steady_Socket_19mm_30cmThis makes setting up the van really easy and quick.For years I used an old Draper 9.6V drill that was years old - but sadly in the end the batteries died and would not charge.You do not need a lot of power - in fact I would suggest too much power is a bad thing as the corner steady's are just that - steady's - not for full blown adjustment.

 
Yes I am hoping to use by Bosch put thanks for the link Clive as I didn't know where to look!


First day's research now completed! First dealer quoted MIRO on his window Sales details, instead of MTPLM, we were 5 caravans in before we realised  :angry:

Second dealer had all his vans locked, which didn't endear him to us  :P  

Overall, liked Compass, Lunar, Swift and Elddiss, older ones were wearing well. Very disappointed with all (5) Baileys which had gone 'orf a bit with age, although a brand new one seemed significantly better quality. May travel further next weekend, out of Kent...........perhaps Essex, as there seem to be a couple of large dealers out there..........just so long as they leave us in peace to look, ponder and discuss.

Weight is certainly going to be an issue as we're restricted to around 1400kgs MTPLM

userWhiteCheyenneMan
Posted: 5 May 2014 10:52 AM
Subject: RE: Choosing the right Caravan
 


Keeps coming back for more

Posts: 154
1002525
Location: Tenterden, Kent Hymervan 562 Silverline


#Yes I am hoping to use my Bosch, but thanks for the link Clive as I didn't know where to look!
userips
Posted: 5 May 2014 1:32 PM
Subject: RE: Choosing the right Caravan
 


Epic contributor

Posts: 1853
10005001001001002525
Location: Lancashire


More clutter to store and keep charged and down right bone idle, I get mrs ips to do the steadies using my bad back as justification. She also does the water and anything else I can get away with :)
Jump to page : First 1 Last
Printer friendly version
E-mail a link to this thread
Jump to forum :


(Delete all cookies set by this site)(Return to Homepage)

Any problems? Contact the administrator