Something for the Bank Holiday Weekend?…

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If you are a regular reader you may remember that on our last trip out we had a bit of an issue with tyre pressures with the caravan (“When Things Don’t Go To Plan…”). Well, a few days ago I was contacted by Charlotte from Wheel Solutions Ltd the people who make Tyre Pal – the tyre pressure monitoring system, asked me if I’d like to test out and review one of their pressure monitoring systems.

SPB_5D_098380With the recent trip still in my mind and especially the difference that just 10 PSI can make in the towing experience I jumped at the chance. Charlotte arrange for one of their TC215B units with 6 sensors to be delivered on loan for a few weeks while we try it out on our next trip. From saying “Yes”, the package containing the TC215B unit, mounting bracket, charging lead, accessories and sensors arrived the following day.

So, this weekend I’ll mainly be unboxing, evaluating and installing the unit and sensors and posing about the install and setting it up  which, from my brief scan through the comprehensive user manual, looks like it’s going to be a breeze.

In a few days time we will be setting off for Plough Lane Caravan Site, one of the Tranquil Touring sites and I’ll report back on how it performed on the trip and giving my thoughts about it.

Now, “in a bit of an exclusive” (I’ve always wanted to say that!) for Caravan Chronicles we will have a special offer from Tyre Pal at the end of the review… just in time to get yourself an early Christmas present… so keep checking back.

Product Review: Goodyear 12 Volt Air Inflator

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In my last post I discovered that the caravan tyre pressures were low and didn’t have a portable means of inflating them. I’d looked at the offerings from a well know auto store and reading the blurb on all the boxes discovered that getting an inflator that would be capable of inflating above normal vehicle pressures would not be a straight ‘off the shelf’ item… well not off the shelves of the auto store I was in at the time. Continue reading

When Things Don’t Go To Plan…

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A few weeks ago we had a five-day break down at The Old Oaks, Glastonbury but all did not go quite to plan.

We had loaded up the caravan over the weekend ready for an early departure on the Monday. I’d done the usual checks, including wheel nut torque and tyre pressure…. oops, the left was down from its normal 62 PSI to a lowly 50 PSI and the right hand side was sitting at 52 PSI. Now at home I have a compressor and air lines in the workshop and it’s a simple matter of pulling out the retractable airline and squirting a bit of air in the tyre, but one thing I don’t have is a suitable 12 volt air compressor. Never the one to miss a tool or accessory buying opportunity after loading the caravan we headed in the direction of one of the well-known auto stores. Finding the correct section in the store and reading all the boxes of the various options it seemed they didn’t have an offering that would hit the magical 62 PSI…. not even the all-singing digital set your pressure and bob’s your Uncle £60 version. OK I’d have to come up with an alternative.  Continue reading

Upgrading pre September 1998 Caravans to 13 Pin

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One of Caravan Chronicles long time readers and supporters, Colin “Snowy” Snowden, has sent me an excellent article he has written covering all aspects of upgrading pre September 1998 UK caravans to the 13 pin Euro Plug.

It’s very comprehensive article and goes into detail about the various problems and colour codes that were used and cover some of the changes that are required, habitation relays and details the steps required to actually do the upgrade with steps on fault finding.

If you have a pre September 1998 caravan and are thinking of replacing the original 12N/12S wiring with a 13 Pin plug, it’s an essential read.

The document can be downloaded and viewed here: Upgrading to 13 Pin

Colin has included contact details in the article, but if you have any questions that the answers might be helpful to others as well, you could also post them in the comments section below and Colin will be able to answer them.

Now then, here’s a couple of deals for you…

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WedFeb6130934UTC2013For the past couple of months we have been trying out a dehumidifier for the caravan. We bough it from ALDI last year and it seems to be working well. It works off 240 volts, but can also be used on 12 volts. There is a fan in the unit which isn’t too noisy but we chose to run it when we are not in the caravan. During the cooler months it means we don’t have to have any of the windows open on their night setting as running the dehumidifier during the day when we are out seems to work very well. We have been very pleased with it, it really does make a difference…. especially when my alter ego “One Hairy Caravanner” has been cooking pasta in the caravan!

With that in mind, I was rather pleased ALDI will have a range of other products for caravanners and motorhomers as part of their “Special-buy” events on the 26th March. Continue reading

A Grand Day Out…

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Yesterday I travelled down to the NEC for the Caravan & Camping Show. Catching the early “OMG it’s 6:35AM” train from Stockport got me down to Birmingham International around 8:20 and it’s only a short walk over the foot bridge straight into the NEC main concourse.

What a lot of shiny caravans!

What a lot of shiny caravans!

Continue reading

A Timely Reminder…

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i came across this while doing some research for a dash cam for a future project.

This is the first half term of the 2015 caravanning season and a lot of sites will have children staying. All sites have speed limits and it’s important to adhere to these limits… or even slower. However children will be children… we have all been one once and we have to expect the unexpected.

Happily no serious injuries. Everyone, please stay safe this season.

(c) Youtube/DashcamOwnersAustralia/OP

A Readers Puzzle Answered…

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No, I’m not starting an Agony Aunt post..!

A couple of days ago one of Caravan Chronicles readers, Vic, posted in the comments section of “Understanding Caravan and Tow Car Electrics” that he recently flattened his car battery by leaving his caravan connected to his car. Here’s what he posted:

Hi Simon, while travelling across Spain I made an overnight stop and left the caravan connected to the car electrics I also hooked up to mains. The next morning the car battery was flat, I’m sure I’ve done this before with no consequence. All I can think is that european site wiring can be suspect.
brilliant article.

OK, that got me thinking… Continue reading

Bernoulli – what’s he got to do with caravanning?…

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One thing that anyone new to towing feels nervous about is being overtaken. The pull and push as another, usually large vehicle overtakes can be so nerve wrecking for some that they never venture near a motorway. However a clever mathematician named Bernoulli back in the 1700’s had it all figured out.

So if you want to find out more, I’ve just published “Understanding the dynamics of towing – being overtaken” where all will be revealed.

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