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In this section we advise you, and provide assistance to others on various industry topics.

Advise for buying my first (2nd hand) caravan?

replies: 58
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08 Oct 2014 @ 12:33:39 pm
Boatmaker
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Good day all,

I recently got some money back from SARS (hooray!)...and looking to spend it wisely on a buying our first (2nd hand) caravan.

We are a family of four, 2 adults, 2 kids (ages 1 and 3). Budget around R20-25k. Tow car will be a Peugeot 307 2.0 XS.
I'm looking for something we can all sleep in, with a tent attached. The tent needs to have sides, I don't like the open sided ones due to wind. We have been camping before by tent, so I have all the kit. I don't want a caravan with a cooker or a toilet. A basin could be handy. A fridge would be essential (gas or electric??). Microwave a nice to have.
Now for some questions:

1. When you towing a caravan, how much stuff can you throw in there while towing? What's the weight limit.
2. When buying a 2nd hand caravan, do you take along a damp meter to check for moisture? I'm guessing this is the biggest most expensive issue to fix with 2nd hand caravans. (I checked out some useful UK sites on this).
3. I remember when i put the towbar on my car, the guy said I can't tow anything more than 750kg. Is this correct? Its a standard towbar with the 4 bolts onto a plate.
4. Do some makes age better than others. I realise i'll be buying a 20-30 year old caravan. Would a Jurgens be better than a Gypsey for example? Or would this depend entirely on its usage and storage?
5. If i buy privately, I would be inclined to send it for a service. What does a caravan service cost (assuming all is ok - no replacement parts?)

I'll stop there for now. So much to learn.
Any advice for me what to get and what to look out for?
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08 Oct 2014 @ 12:52:12 pm
Henk D
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First things first. Your Licence if you have done your licence before 1999 you should be fine as it would have been converted to a EB. If it was done after 1999 then you will have to do the test for EB(including a learners) first. Have your tow bar checked as there are different rating on them and it could very well be that its rated for only 750kg which will limit you to very small caravans. I would suggest to check out those two points before looking at any caravan.
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08 Oct 2014 @ 13:10:33 pm
It'l dodat
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Hi Boatmaker

Welcome to the forum, throw your hat in a corner, put your feet up and enjoy.

No1)

Search the forum there has already been plenty discussed about weight. essentially the GVM of the van must be less or equal to the TARE mass of your car. Having said that, ensure that your van does not exceed the GVM by putting it over a weighbridge, do not believe the figures on the licence disc, and assume that the GVM - the TARE weights of the van is the weight of the camping extras you can load.

Manufacturers register TARE weights without things like tents, gas bottles and spare wheels, this all adds up. This is well known If Mr uniform takes you to a weigh bridge and you are over the GVM, you will not be allowed to continue.... But search the forum...

When you load your van, strive to achieve 80 - 90 Kg NOSE weight. This is the weight on the tow-ball when the van is loaded.

Your towing attitude should be either slightly nose down or horisontal, when the van is loaded and coupled to the car 

As for the rest, hang in there, my guess is you gonna get a bad case of info-over-load..Cool

Buying second hand can be tricky. I would definatly have the van looked over by a professional. specifically: - tyres & their age (very important) rust / woodrot / check rim sizes if there is no spare, some rims are un-otainable. / condition of wheel bearings / the brakes and the gas pipes.

Check that all the steadies work all the way down and all the way up. Same for the jockey wheel.. Ther's plenty

Not trying to scare you off, just go into it with your eyes open.

As to Makes and models of vans, the experts will chew the fat on that, 

Enjoy

Warren

Slightly quicker downhill....
These days a teeny-tiny bit more slightly quicker....
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08 Oct 2014 @ 13:34:02 pm
The RETIRED Boring Camper
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Hi and welcome Hugo (boatmaker) to our world. Mopre just now!

Hey Warren - what happened to number 2. two usually follows one and precedes three!

Hugo - hang in there - lots of advice is about to follow. My 2 cents: If, as you say, the towbar is listed to ONLY carry 750kg, (see also Warrens bit) than you will not be able to tow a caravan. You will however be able to tow one of those fold up trailer vans, Camptech Trailer or the venter type trailer with roof top tent.

See our News (NBS) section, top of page, there is the Oztrail advertising a special at R29 990.00. Looks very cool.

Just my bit.

Regards.
This is how we spent the last fifteen years - working our buts off!
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08 Oct 2014 @ 13:35:52 pm
The RETIRED Boring Camper
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Sorry Warren - I see you now only have No 1, and no more No 3!!!   Cool

Ignore my No 2 thing ! ! !

Regards.
This is how we spent the last fifteen years - working our buts off!
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08 Oct 2014 @ 13:45:07 pm
Back Packer
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Hi Hugo welcome here enjoy the forums, and yes you ar going to be overloaded.

Willy we all know warren, no2 and 3 will more than likely follow on another post further down. Laughing

"Children have never been good at listening to their elders, but they have never failed to imitate them."
-James Baldwin-
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08 Oct 2014 @ 13:53:28 pm
Anonymous

Boatmaker, it is totally the wrong time to purchase a van now unless you find a seller that is really in need.

Rather wait and purchase after the festive season.

You still have your tent and camping kit, so rather invest that money for a couple of months and keep on tent camping until you hit that big fat bargain, +/- Feb. 2015.

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08 Oct 2014 @ 13:55:47 pm
Henk D
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That is great advice from ?? I will second that!
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08 Oct 2014 @ 15:17:31 pm
It'l dodat
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I will third that...

I have issues with No 3), I'm not so sure that towbars are rated, that's why I removed it, but I could be wrong....

Ocasionally......

Very ocasionally......

And I don't want to throw anything at anybody. I want to research, get my facts straight then perhaps do a seperate thread....

I am intrigued indeed..... Speaks to the heart odf any quality Manger worth his pepper....

ONLY MY UNDERSTANDING AS FOR NOW BUT AM RESEARCHING!!!

Trevor my buddy from Steelite is still unavailable.

A towbar is compliant to the TARE + a safety factor of the vehicle that it is fitted to. Otherwise, if the vehicle is sold the new owner is unaware of the "rating", assumes that it is compliant to the TARE of the vehicle and Ooooops!

Secondly, the mass of 750KG indicates to me that the installer may have been referring to an unbraked trailer and may have had his facts only (partially) correct, but the 750 thing is relavent to a braked axel and not the strength of the towbar & attachment to the vehicle.

Gotta go

Slightly quicker downhill....
These days a teeny-tiny bit more slightly quicker....
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08 Oct 2014 @ 17:20:06 pm
Jan Meyer
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Hugo welcome. Don't buy with your heart and have a good look around. When I were looking to buy there were a few which I considered but waited. Then the right one and price were there and I am not sorry.
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08 Oct 2014 @ 18:17:39 pm
Boatmaker
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Thanks for the advice.

I don't have an EB licence...eish! Does that mean I have to do another learners and drivers test? All that mirror, mirror, blind-spot rubbish?

As for the towbar, I have never heard of anybody being restricted to a tow weight on a towbar, hence I'm a little curious as to why the guy told me that, but at the time never contemplated towing more than a trailer. I had installed by a reputable company in Durban. Perhaps i'll call them and see what they say.

Any particular reason why I should wait till the silly season is over to buy a 2nd hand caravan? Do people inflate prices this time of year?

Thanks
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08 Oct 2014 @ 19:24:36 pm
nyiko81
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me and my wife are also new into this business, we also want to get our first caravan we searched around olx and gumree and finaly got a beautiful one from a friend of our neibour my advice before you buy ask close people around you and those who are used to camping you will get a nice cheaper one,.
Tinyiko J Maluleke
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08 Oct 2014 @ 19:33:28 pm
Anonymous

Tinyiko, welcome to the forum, and enjoy the stay!!!!

 

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08 Oct 2014 @ 20:06:22 pm
neef Herman
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Hi Tinyiko, welcome. What is the plan with the crock ? Pretty good meat on them, don't get too attatched. If you wait too long, he will turn the tables on you.
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08 Oct 2014 @ 20:10:45 pm
nyiko81
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thanks guys i feel so welcomed Mr HERMAN I was in suncity and enjoying the crocs with my family thought its a small croc its very aggressive
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08 Oct 2014 @ 20:11:21 pm
nyiko81
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oom Frans thank you lots
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08 Oct 2014 @ 20:16:39 pm
Anonymous

Hei, oppas vir daai OOM storie!!!!he-he-he

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08 Oct 2014 @ 20:21:40 pm
Henk D
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Sitnievasnie,

Please keep us posted on your research. My indformations is only what we were told when me and my dad took his Maxda Magnum in for a tow bar to be fitted and we got asked what it was for. As soon as we said it was for towing a caravan we were told that we had to go for Option B as the other one we could not use to tow a caravan only a small trailer. Not sure if it was Kwik fit or supa quick but it was one of the known places we went to.

So when I bought my Navara i told them i want a tow bar to tow a caravan so didnt have to go that route of aftermarket again.

So if i have given any incorrect information i appologize and would like know once someone can verify it.

O yes that was around 1999-2000

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08 Oct 2014 @ 21:20:39 pm
Chuck Norris
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Hugo welkom op die forum. Sterkte.

Tinyiko, wekom aan jou ook, jy moet net saam lag vir die se goed en as die manne warm raak onder die boortjie. hahahaha
As jy wil he jou drome moet waar word, moet jy eers wakker word.

Die jonge Fransies. (Parys - Frankryk)
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08 Oct 2014 @ 21:29:12 pm
It'l dodat
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Dippies, only with pleasure.  Trevor is the owner of Steelite, as soon as I get me mitts on him I'll bend his ear.

This bleedin panado.. (tablet) lost a post when someone phoned, grrrrr, I'll re- compose tomorrow...

You describe the rear mount as having a standard gooseneck 50mm ball mounted on a plate with 4 holes, for M16 bolts...

Nothing to apologise for, on the contrary, you've unearthed an interesting point "rated" towbars.... Now back in the 80's I used  to inspect towballs for then Lectrolite, and this you can believe, a std 50mm gooseneck towball is plenty strong enough for a big van like a Classic.

NEVER EVER DO THIS! Even when the tow hitch is used as a snatch recovery attachment by stupid, ignorant idiots, it's not the gooseneck that usually breakes in two, it's the 2 M16 HIGH TENSILE BOLTS that strip or the entire mounting that tears out off the vehicle. With snatch recovery, you could be looking at between 8 - 12 tonnes force in the snatch recovery rope at full stretch

Slightly quicker downhill....
These days a teeny-tiny bit more slightly quicker....
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08 Oct 2014 @ 21:32:10 pm
Bostoe
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Sien jy het genoeg raad gekry sterkte en geniet jou wa two points for you 1 Look for hout vrot 2 Look how the wheels is running service are hope my engels is ok
Haak daai wa kamp bly koning
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08 Oct 2014 @ 21:35:50 pm
Neill and MArg
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Hi, Since you are from KZN I will advise you to contact Keith (Ravi) from Mobile Caravan Repairs. For a small fee he will check your caravan over before you purchase it and advise on damages and cost to repair. He comes highly recommended. He has done work for us and quiet a few people we have recommended him to. All satisfied customers.
Regards MArg

Keith (Ravi) 083 3429293
Neill & MArg
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08 Oct 2014 @ 21:36:06 pm
It'l dodat
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Sorry, stupid tablet, the cursor buggers off and does it's own thing.

So yes, I'm keen to resolve the point, but don't want to hi-jack this thread so I'll start a new thread... Rated or not rated, that is the question..Laughing

Started on your point 2,  point 3 is on hold, went to point 4 then lost the whole bloody lot, I'll re-compose from my desk-top on the morrow...

Cheers 

Warren

Slightly quicker downhill....
These days a teeny-tiny bit more slightly quicker....
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08 Oct 2014 @ 21:37:43 pm
POTYSTER
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jipeee manne--het die bike verkoop---nou soek ek karavaan---as enigiemand weet van 'n kleintjie--so 'n Jurgens Wimpi/Sprite Sprint/Caravette 4 of 5--Gypsey 2---ja ja ja ek weet julle gaan my braai met die kommentaar oor 'n kleintjie---onthou ek wil nie afgeskrik word die eerste keer nie--dit is net ek en die vrou---ek wil gemaklik tou en nie sukkel nie---sal hoogs waardeer as ek kan info kry waar en hoe om te kyk vir houtvrot ens.--dankie
POTYSTER
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09 Oct 2014 @ 06:10:44 am
It'l dodat
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Ok, so now I'm at my desktop....

2) Damp-meter....

I'm not convinced that reliance on a damp-meter would be the correct thing to go for. Yes if damp is present then walk away, but wood-rot can also be dry, which a damp meter will not detect.

You need to know what you are looking for. particularly above and below windows, around the door the bottom of the door and where the outerskin overlaps(the roof skin is usually under the gutter running above the window...

Look for signs of interior panneling having wet marks, push against the panneling and check for "soft" ususlly a "crunching" noise It can be very tricky. Niel & marge's advice is solid get an expert in...

The things I talk about are not the list, only some of the more common things that don't get done.

Tent... Have the seller pitch the tent. check each and every zip several times, they are expensive to replace. Look for faded spots, usually about 12 - 20mm diam  where the fabric color has changed, these spot like things usually lre leak places... Can be sealed....

Point 3) on hold for now.

Point 4)

Which van. Well, that would depend on the outcome of point 3) obviously, but here I would recommend that you stay out of the less common models & makes such as the Aero Car.

Stick withthe more popular makes Gypsey / Jurgens / Sprite & so on. Against my principals with your vehicle look at the pop- top vans.

Layout. Here be careful of which type of main bed you go for. An 'Island" bed is best as you are not climbing over one another to get out for that 02:00 widdly-waddly as is the case with a transverse bed. The rest is pure-and-simple personal taste.

Don't be blinded by a few "wart's" old vans will have them, look at the potential as well. As long as the platform (the van) is sound... 

Remember, by buying a van, you haven't escaped camping in a tent, all you're doing is adding on a fancy-smancy bedroom....

Lastly, be open to other options such as tent trailers (trailers that have tents that fold out) , camper trailers, (usually with a roof top tent type configuration) before you buy. IE make sure what you eventually land up with suits your long term needs. 

Would you want to go off down long dusty sand roads to remote places? Is a van the right option?  Take your time think about it before you take the plunge... 

Oh your second post.... YES WAIT! After Dec prices plummet do the camping thing this year, plan next for next year,,, 

Oh and lastly, enjoy! 

Regards 

Warren

Slightly quicker downhill....
These days a teeny-tiny bit more slightly quicker....
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09 Oct 2014 @ 06:19:36 am
It'l dodat
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jipeee manne--het die bike verkoop---nou soek ek karavaan---as enigiemand weet van 'n kleintjie--so 'n Jurgens Wimpi/Sprite Sprint/Caravette 4 of 5--Gypsey 2---ja ja ja ek weet julle gaan my braai met die kommentaar oor 'n kleintjie---onthou ek wil nie afgeskrik word die eerste keer nie--dit is net ek en die vrou---ek wil gemaklik tou en nie sukkel nie---sal hoogs waardeer as ek kan info kry waar en hoe om te kyk vir houtvrot ens.--dankie

 

Hi P

I see you are a gau-tennger, Get hold of Deric / Tikkie at Charisma Caravans at the Krugersdorp end of ondekker's street. (011) 955-2115 / 083 7766 852

They deal in second hand vans, almost exclusively, (unlike a car dealer that get's the odd van) and are very good at it. Ususally thy have a good range and you can "book" what you are looking for and they will contact you when they get it in.

Tell them "daai mal Englse-boertjie" met die groen Landy met al die vice op die bull-bar het ge-stuur...Tongue out

Good guys...

NOW I'M GOING TO GET MY MORNING COFFEE, !!!!!

Slightly quicker downhill....
These days a teeny-tiny bit more slightly quicker....
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09 Oct 2014 @ 06:40:23 am
Anonymous

jipeee manne--het die bike verkoop---nou soek ek karavaan---as enigiemand weet van 'n kleintjie--so 'n Jurgens Wimpi/Sprite Sprint/Caravette 4 of 5--Gypsey 2---ja ja ja ek weet julle gaan my braai met die kommentaar oor 'n kleintjie---onthou ek wil nie afgeskrik word die eerste keer nie--dit is net ek en die vrou---ek wil gemaklik tou en nie sukkel nie---sal hoogs waardeer as ek kan info kry waar en hoe om te kyk vir houtvrot ens.--dankie

Potyster, volg Grumpy se draad, as hy nog sy Caravette 5 het glo ek dit sal 'n baie goeie koop wees teen 'n weggeei prys.

Ek adverteeer nie vir hom nie en kry ook nie 'n kommisie nie. Begin 'n topic met ''Grumpy se Caravette 5''

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09 Oct 2014 @ 07:29:25 am
Anonymous
Boatmaker,

The reason why you might only be able to tow 50kg is because of the vehicle tow rating, not the tow bar..

for some reason this is ignored, but in my case became extremely important. You can have a car with tare 3000kg, but if its tow rating is 700kg, it is 700kg.. the legal issue comes in when the tow rating is more than the tare of vehicle.

no offence, i have a french car as well, tow rating is way below tare,so check the actual tow rating first, then check if someone made an error regarding the tow bar. If your tow rating is only 750kg, you will struggle to find a caravan for 4... sherpa tiny is closest to caravan, but out of you price range..

regarding prices, got a good deal on a fleetline previously in november... just keep eyes open, sometimes people do need to sell quickly, and that opportunity can hit you anytime, happened with my expo as well.

i m not how many of the jurgens wimpie or wimpi or wimpy??? Is around? They should be relatively light as well.. probably in the region of 750 to 800kg max? My expo is only 900kg, but we usually pack most weight in car anyways
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09 Oct 2014 @ 08:15:01 am
Neill and MArg
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The advise on checking the zips on the tent are very important. We had to change a few of ours two years ago at R220.00 each. Now I believe the price is closer to R300 each.
Also the advise about the spare wheel. When we bought our caravan there was no spare wheel. Eventually Keith managed to find one for us.
Phone Keith (Ravi) he does mobile repairs at your home, so you can see exactly what is being repaired. It was very satisfying to see for our self that the repairs we done correctly. He will check the caravan out for a small fee, with out obligation to do the repairs
Regards MArg
Neill & MArg
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09 Oct 2014 @ 08:23:52 am
Anonymous

 

Hi P

I see you are a gau-tennger, Get hold of Deric / Tikkie at Charisma Caravans at the Krugersdorp end of ondekker's street. (011) 955-2115 / 083 7766 852

They deal in second hand vans, almost exclusively, (unlike a car dealer that get's the odd van) and are very good at it. Ususally thy have a good range and you can "book" what you are looking for and they will contact you when they get it in.

Tell them "daai mal Englse-boertjie" met die groen Landy met al die vice op die bull-bar het ge-stuur...Tongue out

Good guys...

NOW I'M GOING TO GET MY MORNING COFFEE, !!!!!

Bought mine from them, very proffessional. Definately will do business with them again in the future.

They do repairs as per your request and won't let your van leave their premisses unless everything is up to customer standards.

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09 Oct 2014 @ 08:32:01 am
Anonymous

Boatmaker, very welcome to the forum.

The Pegout 307's Tarra is about 1200kg, (check on your lisence disc tarra is printed on it) you can therefore tow a van with GVM up to 1200kg, the restriction as far as I can determine, is your lisence. If you have a code B, you are not allowed to tow above 750kg, no matter what Tarra the towing vehicle is. 

I do not think this has much to do with the towball or tow bar, but rather your lisence.

Another point is as my friend ?? pointed out, lots of people will go and buy vans now for the holidays, only toe find that they are not into camping, and will sell those for alot less than they paid.

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09 Oct 2014 @ 09:38:28 am
The RETIRED Boring Camper
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Hi Tinyiko (nyiko81) and welcome to our world.

Please enjoy participating on our Forums, and we hope you find your dream van soon.

Please keep us up to date with your new adventure, and please make a plan to join our next CaravanParks.com Forums Members Rally that I plan to hold somewhere in Gauteng early next year.

Have fun!   Cool

 

Regards.
This is how we spent the last fifteen years - working our buts off!
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09 Oct 2014 @ 09:55:34 am
Anonymous

Hi Tinyiko (nyiko81) and welcome to our world.

Please enjoy participating on our Forums, and we hope you find your dream van soon.

Please keep us up to date with your new adventure, and please make a plan to join our next CaravanParks.com Forums Members Rally that I plan to hold somewhere in Gauteng early next year.

Have fun!   Cool

 

Willie, I will keep a close watch on Tinyiko!!!!, as he lives just "up the road" from me!!!I

I am in due process of donating my "old" collection of Caravan & Outdoor Mags (2003 - 2013) to him, and I think be will be busy reading mags in his "new" van very soon!!!! 

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09 Oct 2014 @ 10:01:06 am
Anonymous

Tinyiko, baie welkom hier, los die oom en tannie en meneer, jy laat ons oud voelLaughing

Enjoy and welcome to the best way of holidaying.

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09 Oct 2014 @ 10:26:32 am
Boatmaker
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So I have now done a bit of reading on getting an EB license, and discovered some folk go straight for the EC (Trucks). What I can't find though, is that if you have an EC does that automatically entitle you to drive a car as well or do you need to have multiple codes on your licence. IE "EC" & "B".

The law states:
" Code EC: This is for an articulated heavy motor vehicle (heavy motor vehicle drawing a trailer[s]) with a gross combination mass exceeding 16 000 kg or a combination of a bus or goods vehicle with a gross vehicle mass exceeding 16 000 kg. You must be 18 years or older to apply."

You see my concern. It does not state that you then are automatically qualified to drive a vehicle with a GCM less than 16000kg.

Furthermore, what happens if you have a particularly heavy vehicle? An EB licence entitles you to drive a car+trailer GCM up to 3500kg. Certainly not enough for say a Land Rover Disco 4 at a GVM alone of 3240kg!!!

"Code EB: This is for a:
light motor vehicle that is articulated (light motor vehicle drawing a trailer) with a gross combination mass not exceeding 3 500 kg. You must be 18 years or older to apply"
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09 Oct 2014 @ 10:37:16 am
Anonymous

Boatmaker, I have an EC license with a Restriction: 0. I therefore can drive anything up to code B, but accept of Code A & A1, meaning you can drive anything with a steeringwheel accept motor driven vehicles with handles (i.e. On Road Motor Cycles or Quads)

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09 Oct 2014 @ 10:37:18 am
Anonymous

Hugo, no, if you obtain the code EC, you are entitled to drive any vehicle (car/truck) in the lesser class (EB) or (E)

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09 Oct 2014 @ 10:41:08 am
Anonymous

Dennis, hoe spreek ons so saam-saam!!!! Selfde denke!!!!

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09 Oct 2014 @ 10:47:25 am
Anonymous

Lyk my 'n spook het 'n tou gespan. Ek het my al misgis met die EC Beprking 0. Ek was onder die indruk ek mag motorbike ook ry tot een oggend toe maak die koeltekonte my die bike stoot, maar gelukkig was daar 'n veld naby, gestoot tot daar, bike aangeskakel en hulle die middel vinger gegooi.Tongue out

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09 Oct 2014 @ 10:54:47 am
Anonymous

Die m/fiets storie werk op sy eie. Ek't sommer daar in '66 vir die grootste van destyds, (sonder sy-span) gegaan, ewe veel moeite gewees as die klein fietse.

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09 Oct 2014 @ 11:03:20 am
Anonymous

Boatmaker, just be carefull if you go for the EC. Rather take a manual hauler & semi with a link than an automatic hauler, because if you pass the test with an automatic, same will reflect on your license card and then you are only entitled to drive an automatic.

So slaan maar daai kierrie.

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09 Oct 2014 @ 12:29:12 pm
It'l dodat
Uranus Member
96% Profile Strength
Posts: 3326
Joined: 12 May 2014
Experience: 62 years

So I have now done a bit of reading on getting an EB license, and discovered some folk go straight for the EC (Trucks). What I can't find though, is that if you have an EC does that automatically entitle you to drive a car as well or do you need to have multiple codes on your licence. IE "EC" & "B".

The law states:
" Code EC: This is for an articulated heavy motor vehicle (heavy motor vehicle drawing a trailer[s]) with a gross combination mass exceeding 16 000 kg or a combination of a bus or goods vehicle with a gross vehicle mass exceeding 16 000 kg. You must be 18 years or older to apply."

You see my concern. It does not state that you then are automatically qualified to drive a vehicle with a GCM less than 16000kg.

Furthermore, what happens if you have a particularly heavy vehicle? An EB licence entitles you to drive a car+trailer GCM up to 3500kg. Certainly not enough for say a Land Rover Disco 4 at a GVM alone of 3240kg!!!

"Code EB: This is for a:
light motor vehicle that is articulated (light motor vehicle drawing a trailer) with a gross combination mass not exceeding 3 500 kg. You must be 18 years or older to apply"

 

Boat....

With your existing licence you can tow up to 750Kg trailer (so ventertjie) if you don't want to get another licence, go for a tent trailer....

Just a thought...

Slightly quicker downhill....
These days a teeny-tiny bit more slightly quicker....
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09 Oct 2014 @ 13:28:09 pm
AndrewPhilip (sadly leaving SA)
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WRT the towbar, it is supposed to have a plate on it with specifications stamped. Have a look at that for more info. 

Now, as to the advice to look at camping trailers...it is good advice if you have older kids BUT ...they are a pain if you have very young kids. I had a brand new Camptech, and got rid of it within 6 months of my daughter being born. Replaced it with a (then) 14 year old caravan.

The reasons are simple. You will need as simple a set up as possible. If you arrive somewhere in the rain the wife and baby can go straight into the caravan. Kids (I have 2 girls, so a tree is not viable!) need the loo miles from a petrol station....pull over and let them use the porta-potti in the van. Same with changing a nappy. Everything is much easier. With a trailer, you have to set up before you have anywhere for the family to shelter.

Also, with a caravan it is MUCH easier to regulate temperature then in a tent. Warmer at night, cooler in the day. Very NB with a baby. Also blocks out more noise.

I would look at the old Jurgens fleetline 4, Gypsy Caravette 4 or 5, or Sprites. If you are patient you will find something you can afford. Good luck, and let us know what you find.

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09 Oct 2014 @ 14:51:56 pm
It'l dodat
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TOWBAR RATINGS

Towbar's are now rated, see seperate post 

Slightly quicker downhill....
These days a teeny-tiny bit more slightly quicker....
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09 Oct 2014 @ 19:36:36 pm
Boatmaker
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AndrewPhilip you hit the nail on the head. Just last weekend we went camping. When we arrived on site my kids (aged 1 and 3) were grumpy, tired and hungry...it was drizzling, cold and windy - and we had to setup the tent and prepare dinner. I know that's part of the fun (?) in camping and I can look back now and laugh - but at the time its kind of stressful. A caravan would have been MUCH easier.
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09 Oct 2014 @ 21:36:49 pm
Anonymous
jipeee manne--het die bike verkoop---nou soek ek karavaan---as enigiemand weet van 'n kleintjie--so 'n Jurgens Wimpi/Sprite Sprint/Caravette 4 of 5--Gypsey 2---ja ja ja ek weet julle gaan my braai met die kommentaar oor 'n kleintjie---onthou ek wil nie afgeskrik word die eerste keer nie--dit is net ek en die vrou---ek wil gemaklik tou en nie sukkel nie---sal hoogs waardeer as ek kan info kry waar en hoe om te kyk vir houtvrot ens.--dankie

die expo is ook goeie keuse.. geniet dit vreeslik, en is lekker lig om te sleep
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10 Oct 2014 @ 06:26:42 am
It'l dodat
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AndrewPhilip you hit the nail on the head. Just last weekend we went camping. When we arrived on site my kids (aged 1 and 3) were grumpy, tired and hungry...it was drizzling, cold and windy - and we had to setup the tent and prepare dinner. I know that's part of the fun (?) in camping and I can look back now and laugh - but at the time its kind of stressful. A caravan would have been MUCH easier.

Yes but....

You'r kids ain't gonna stay 1 & 3 they grow at a hell of a lick, then you stuck with ???

Naughty, naughty, naughty you.... Wher's you pop-up-shelter thingie???...Laughing

Slightly quicker downhill....
These days a teeny-tiny bit more slightly quicker....
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10 Oct 2014 @ 07:59:28 am
Neill and MArg
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Hi Hugo, For years we camped with a tent. Buying our 2nd hand caravan was the best thing ever. What we find a lot easier is, we set the caravan up before we leave home. We make the beds and cover them with plastic, then pack the chairs and table on the beds. It takes up about 20mins to unhitch, put down the steadies, put up the awning with sides if needed, then set up the tables and chairs. We have altered the inside of the caravan to suit us so that everything has it place. If it does not have it own place or not used it does not come with.
Regards MArg
Neill & MArg
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10 Oct 2014 @ 08:05:27 am
Leon
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The difference between the GVM and Tara of the caravan will tell you how much you can load in the van. Take note that some older vans have had changes made by previous owners and this could have had a efect on the GVM of that van.

If you have a damp meter use it! ! ! ! Make sure you know how to then use the info to bargain for a good price.

Towbar or tow rating is two different things. Towbar rating is provided by the manufacturer or installer of the towbar. The tow rating is provided by the vehicle manufacturer and usually goes along with the strenght capability of the chassis of your vehicle. Whatch out, you can get that a vehicle rated to tow more than 1400kg but the towbar is only rate to 750kg, or the other way round. In both instances you are limited to the least of the two ratings.

Sprite, Gypsey and Jurgens are all manufactured at the same factory. The quality of the products are not fantastic but OK. With older caravans the quality also depends on how was the van looked after. Fact is it is the same as second hand vehicles. You either buy another mans gem or his troubles.

There is not much to service on a caravan and a person with very little technical knowledge can do it himself. If everything in the caravan works perfectly, the fridge makes ice but does not freeze the tomatoes with elect or gas, lights work, charger charges the battery then the only thing to service is the tow coupling and the brakes. So if you made use of a damp meter and that also checks out ok you are 90% there. The service at a Campworld dealer will cost you between R800 to R1800. Depends on where you go and what they spec with the service.

All the best with finding you Van. It sometimes is more of a pleasure looking for it than camping with it.

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10 Oct 2014 @ 12:07:17 pm
AndrewPhilip (sadly leaving SA)
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@Warren, true, but remembering that you can get back almost as much for your caravan as what you paid for it, you are no worse off flogging it and replacing it with a tent-trailer or whatever.....WHEN the kids are older. 

And a pop-up thingie (can someone teach me how to fold the stupid things!#@!#) only dolves one issue. Doesn't help with noise/temp control/changing en-route/loo etc etc etc!

@Hugo...been there...done that.....got the caravan!!! These days if I arrive after 5, I still make a fire but I will drop the steadies & plug in elec. Wife can then heat up the babies meal in the microwave and feed her. While that happens I duck to the nearest fast-food joint. Eat next to the fire, bath kids and park them in bed.....then demolish a bottle of wine with the wife, next to the fire. Minimal stress and everyone is happy. Rainy and cold? Bin the fire and eat in the caravan.

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10 Oct 2014 @ 12:33:47 pm
It'l dodat
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@Warren, true, but remembering that you can get back almost as much for your caravan as what you paid for it, you are no worse off flogging it and replacing it with a tent-trailer or whatever.....WHEN the kids are older. 

And a pop-up thingie (can someone teach me how to fold the stupid things!#@!#) only dolves one issue. Doesn't help with noise/temp control/changing en-route/loo etc etc etc!

@Hugo...been there...done that.....got the caravan!!! These days if I arrive after 5, I still make a fire but I will drop the steadies & plug in elec. Wife can then heat up the babies meal in the microwave and feed her. While that happens I duck to the nearest fast-food joint. Eat next to the fire, bath kids and park them in bed.....then demolish a bottle of wine with the wife, next to the fire. Minimal stress and everyone is happy. Rainy and cold? Bin the fire and eat in the caravan.

OH BOY..... OH BOY... YES YES YES I CAN......I REALLY CAN...Yaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay

Also had that......

So search my post pop-up shelter's... Ther's a U tube link.... Ya gonna kick your butt back into antiquity...Laughing

 

Slightly quicker downhill....
These days a teeny-tiny bit more slightly quicker....
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