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Rapido v56

Dan t smart

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Returning to your September inquiry about a V56’s ‘winterisation’, I note that (like the Campereve Magellan I mentioned then) the insulation is described on Rapido’s 2016 website as "XHP Xtreme Hybrid Protect insulation = Polyurethane and Polyether complex with aluminium sheet”.


There’s a lot of information about the V56 on Rapido’s website, but I suggest you check VERY carefully with a knowledgeable Rapido dealership exactly what the latest standard UK specification is.


There’s a video review of the Ducato X250-based version here




that should give you an adequate pros-&-cons overview. Some changes will have been made since then (eg. Rapido’s optional frontal treatment was dropped when the Ducato X290 was introduced) but what applied (good or bad) in 2010 will mostly still be relevant.


One forum member bought a V56 in March 2014




Ralph’s last logon was at the end of April this year, so he may have lost interest in this forum. But you might get lucky if you send him a PM message asking for his ownership experiences.


My own coachbuilt Rapido 640’s interior seems fairly well put together, though covering every screw-hole (and there are many, many of these) with an adhesive disk could offend a joinery purist. The V56 (like the 640) has just one 230V socket, which is decidedly parsimonious. It would be possible to add extra sockets, but not necessarily easily. If you wanted more a Rapido dealership might be prepared to add them at a price.


Not sure there’s much else to say - it’s a 5.99m-long Ducato panel-van conversion and (except for the gas-locker’s position) fairly conventional.

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I've got a Campereve 643 (the only one in the UK, I believe) picked it up in June. Its an identical layout to the Rapido V55. The insulation is pretty basic vs a coachbuilt, its 2 layers of an adhesive backed, aluminium foiled 3mm foam material. Its been pretty liberally applied to the panels of the van - although in some tricky area's there is not much.


Tricky area's would be the front doors, and in the back where the light clusters are. Additionally, some easy-to-insulate areas have nothing. The panels covering the back doors have a thin foam lining on the back, but there is nothing actually within the rear doors. I will likely sort this myself. I have not yet looked at the sliding door, but I have a feeling this is the same. Thankfully the bits missed are the easiest bits for a DIY fix-up.


Looking behind the fridge, I see floor to ceiling insulation, ditto behind the water tank and gas locker etc. In the floor there is a good 25mm of closed-cell foam, ditto the roof.


On the subject of water, the water pipes generally follow the blown air heater pipes, and a blown air pipe is visible inside the cassette toilet door. The only place that I think could be an issue is around the fresh tank which is on the UK offside at the rear under the bed. There is insulation down the back of it. but no heat-source. I shall likely sort this by adding a junction to the toilet room blown-air feed.


Waste wise, the tank is underslung centrally located and insulated, all the waste pipes drop through the floor and directly into the tank - no horizontal traverses under the van. Additionally, a blown air heater outlet goes straight down through the floor and into the insulating jacket around the waste tank.


To see if the Rapido is about the same, take the seat squab of the rear travel seat and lift up the flap, and remove the wooden insert. Now look towards the side of the van - you should see the alu backed foam stuck to the side panel.


I took a week off work after getting mine to bring it up to 'my' spec. DIY fitting the following: 3x solar panels + MPPT, auto sat dish, 2x11L GasIt system with ext filler, Sterling B2B 50A charger (from old van), Android head unit, under seat subwoofer, additional 110AH leisure battery. BM100 AH counter, 4G router, WiFi repeater, 2x external antenna for 4G and WiFi, GPS, Tracker, Road camera, reversing camera, 1000W inverter, 2 additional sockets, auto-changeover relay to feed inverter 240V to mains sockets, 2x 12V sockets for laptop, 15" TV, USB charger, light in 'garage'. I was indeed like the proverbial pig-in-sh1t !!


Still got a good 500KG payload left.


2016 Campereve's are called 'Dreamers' for the UK. There is two trim levels. Prices have come down somewhat vs this year and the spec has gone up. LED DRL's are now standard for instance. Its a shame that there is no 'dreamer' equivalent of the Campereve 743 - like the 643, but with a bigger lounge on a 6.43M XLWB ducato.


On the subject of the self-adhesive screw covers, anyone know where I can obtain replacements from? fitting the reversing camera (in place of the existing high level brake light) meant removing the trim, and the silly sticky screw covers never go back on the same. I tried ebay - cannot get a decent match.



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It’s reasonable to assume that the dealership from which you bought your Campereve 643 (Highbridge Caravans?) should be able to obtain the screw-covers from the French factory. As the covers are damage-prone, I’ve been considering turning up at Rapido’s factory when I’m in France and seeing if they’ll let me have a few, but I’ve yet to try this. If your dealer can’t supply covers (and you don’t want to go to Mayenne) you might try writing to the factory and begging! I doubt that it will be possible to source covers elsewhere that would acceptably match the originals.


Recent Rapido Vans have two choices of ‘wood finish' for the furniture - Montalchino or Supreme - with the former used widely throughout the Rapido range and (I believe) the latter unique to Vans. However, I think the wood-finish of Campereve PVCs may well differ from that of Rapido Vans and, consequently, different colour covers would be used.

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  • 1 month later...

Just to say that I obtained screw covers from highbridge, no bother, in fact FoC as goodwill. They have stock of covers now so you should be able to obtain.


As for the winterisation, i removed the rear door plastic, not finding much insulation. Remidied this myself with some self adhesive foam, and a couple of camping mats. I then went to town, covering the cream plastic with wall carpet. Looks better now to boot. Also fitted a curtain across the back which comes around the edges of the bed, and tucks underneith it. Means that the hot air does not instantly escape if i open the back door to get at stuff under the bed.


The self adhesive foam has deadened the noise from the back, door now closes with a thunk rather than a clang. I also reversed the window catches to ensure a better seal, and less movement.


So far we have not had much in the way of low temps, -4 maybe, no less. Van has been fine.


Only issue I have had is condensation on the cream plastic panels either side of the bed low down near the matress. The tucked and wrapped around curtains ensure that the bed does not get damp. I suspect this is due to the temperature difference under/above the bed? There is a heater outlet under the bed.


I'll likely do the same insulation job on the sliding door.


When I have spent a weekend skiing from it, I'll report back.



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