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UK Caravanning (uk.rec.caravanning) A forum for the discussion of caravanning undertaken by residents of the United Kingdom, whether in the UK or abroad. It encourages the interchange of views on the merits of models of caravan, makes of tow car, accessories, caravan sites, caravan clubs, and other related topics. The term caravan is to include trailer vans, motor caravans and trailer tents.

Getting a cheap caravan and going skiing now



 
 
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  #1 (permalink)  
Old October 11th 04, 06:38 AM posted to uk.rec.caravanning
David Jones
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 1
Default Getting a cheap caravan and going skiing now

Hi,

I have just concocted a plan to go to some glacier skiing for a month
or so before the main skiing season. I thought about living in a
caravan. I have a rover 218 turbo deisel (L reg) with tow bar +
electric socket. I have just been layed off so have some time. I was
thinking about going to Tignes. I have some experience with towing,
from farm work. I am prepared for some level of hardship if I can go
skiing for cheap, but do not want to die frozen in my caravan ;-).

How should I go about buying one? I am in Anglesea ATM, live in
Cambridge and will be around Berkshire for some time. I was looking
at ebay, and it looks like there are some cheap ones, see [1] and [2].

What weight can I tow with my car? How do I find what weight a
caravan is?

Anything I should check on a cheap caravan? I am used to buying
second hand cars. Should I take it for a test drive?

I noticed that the adverts mentioned gas heaters. Are they safe to
use while asleap? Do you get automatic ones (with thermostats)?

Does anyone know of sites near glaciers?

Any other hints? What do you think of my plan? Any good intro sites?

Thanks for any help.

[1] http://cgi.ebay.co.uk/ws/eBayISAPI.d...2803 378&rd=1
[2] http://cgi.ebay.co.uk/ws/eBayISAPI.d...2336 977&rd=1
Ads
  #2 (permalink)  
Old October 11th 04, 11:34 AM posted to uk.rec.caravanning
skubdoo
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 37
Default Getting a cheap caravan and going skiing now

Good on you David, wish I was younger....and do the same.

Try and buy a van that has been kept under cover...and if the inside smells
musty and ORRIBLE give it a miss, cos its rotting away also check the floor
too.

No gas heaters are safe while asleep....get a bird to sleep with you, then
all you have to do is turn her on and off in the night !!!!!!!!.





"David Jones" wrote in message
om...
Hi,

I have just concocted a plan to go to some glacier skiing for a month
or so before the main skiing season. I thought about living in a
caravan. I have a rover 218 turbo deisel (L reg) with tow bar +
electric socket. I have just been layed off so have some time. I was
thinking about going to Tignes. I have some experience with towing,
from farm work. I am prepared for some level of hardship if I can go
skiing for cheap, but do not want to die frozen in my caravan ;-).

How should I go about buying one? I am in Anglesea ATM, live in
Cambridge and will be around Berkshire for some time. I was looking
at ebay, and it looks like there are some cheap ones, see [1] and [2].

What weight can I tow with my car? How do I find what weight a
caravan is?

Anything I should check on a cheap caravan? I am used to buying
second hand cars. Should I take it for a test drive?

I noticed that the adverts mentioned gas heaters. Are they safe to
use while asleap? Do you get automatic ones (with thermostats)?

Does anyone know of sites near glaciers?

Any other hints? What do you think of my plan? Any good intro sites?

Thanks for any help.

[1]
http://cgi.ebay.co.uk/ws/eBayISAPI.d...2803 378&rd=1
[2]
http://cgi.ebay.co.uk/ws/eBayISAPI.d...2336 977&rd=1



  #3 (permalink)  
Old October 11th 04, 11:34 AM posted to uk.rec.caravanning
skubdoo
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 37
Default Getting a cheap caravan and going skiing now

Good on you David, wish I was younger....and do the same.

Try and buy a van that has been kept under cover...and if the inside smells
musty and ORRIBLE give it a miss, cos its rotting away also check the floor
too.

No gas heaters are safe while asleep....get a bird to sleep with you, then
all you have to do is turn her on and off in the night !!!!!!!!.





"David Jones" wrote in message
om...
Hi,

I have just concocted a plan to go to some glacier skiing for a month
or so before the main skiing season. I thought about living in a
caravan. I have a rover 218 turbo deisel (L reg) with tow bar +
electric socket. I have just been layed off so have some time. I was
thinking about going to Tignes. I have some experience with towing,
from farm work. I am prepared for some level of hardship if I can go
skiing for cheap, but do not want to die frozen in my caravan ;-).

How should I go about buying one? I am in Anglesea ATM, live in
Cambridge and will be around Berkshire for some time. I was looking
at ebay, and it looks like there are some cheap ones, see [1] and [2].

What weight can I tow with my car? How do I find what weight a
caravan is?

Anything I should check on a cheap caravan? I am used to buying
second hand cars. Should I take it for a test drive?

I noticed that the adverts mentioned gas heaters. Are they safe to
use while asleap? Do you get automatic ones (with thermostats)?

Does anyone know of sites near glaciers?

Any other hints? What do you think of my plan? Any good intro sites?

Thanks for any help.

[1]
http://cgi.ebay.co.uk/ws/eBayISAPI.d...2803 378&rd=1
[2]
http://cgi.ebay.co.uk/ws/eBayISAPI.d...2336 977&rd=1



  #4 (permalink)  
Old October 11th 04, 11:47 AM posted to uk.rec.caravanning
Paul - xxx
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 1,042
Default Getting a cheap caravan and going skiing now

David Jones vaguely muttered something like ...

Dunno about the weights for your car etc, so I'll ignore that bit ..

Well done, sounds like a great idea .. wish I could come ...

Anything I should check on a cheap caravan? I am used to buying
second hand cars. Should I take it for a test drive?


Damp, any smell of mould or musty, or too perfumey to mask the smell, walk
away. Decent tyres, check any grease points actualy seem to have grease on
them ..

I noticed that the adverts mentioned gas heaters. Are they safe to
use while asleap? Do you get automatic ones (with thermostats)?


Personally, I wouldn't use a gas heater whilst asleep.

I'd just buy the same equipment as for camping, decent all-season sleeping
bags etc, you'll be far warmer than in a tent ..

I also wouldn't worry too much about the 'van itself, I'd buy it as a part
of the experience and just get rid / sell it on at the end of the trip ..
Almost anything dry will suffice, but a lot depends on the level of luxury /
survival you want ..


--
Paul ...

(8(|) Homer Rules !!!

"A tosser is a tosser, no matter what mode of transport they're using."


  #5 (permalink)  
Old October 11th 04, 11:47 AM posted to uk.rec.caravanning
Paul - xxx
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 1,042
Default Getting a cheap caravan and going skiing now

David Jones vaguely muttered something like ...

Dunno about the weights for your car etc, so I'll ignore that bit ..

Well done, sounds like a great idea .. wish I could come ...

Anything I should check on a cheap caravan? I am used to buying
second hand cars. Should I take it for a test drive?


Damp, any smell of mould or musty, or too perfumey to mask the smell, walk
away. Decent tyres, check any grease points actualy seem to have grease on
them ..

I noticed that the adverts mentioned gas heaters. Are they safe to
use while asleap? Do you get automatic ones (with thermostats)?


Personally, I wouldn't use a gas heater whilst asleep.

I'd just buy the same equipment as for camping, decent all-season sleeping
bags etc, you'll be far warmer than in a tent ..

I also wouldn't worry too much about the 'van itself, I'd buy it as a part
of the experience and just get rid / sell it on at the end of the trip ..
Almost anything dry will suffice, but a lot depends on the level of luxury /
survival you want ..


--
Paul ...

(8(|) Homer Rules !!!

"A tosser is a tosser, no matter what mode of transport they're using."


  #6 (permalink)  
Old October 11th 04, 02:22 PM posted to uk.rec.caravanning
Steve Parry
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 98
Default Getting a cheap caravan and going skiing now

In om,
David Jones fumbled, fiddled and fingered:
Hi,

I have just concocted a plan to go to some glacier skiing for a month
or so before the main skiing season. I thought about living in a
caravan. I have a rover 218 turbo deisel (L reg) with tow bar +
electric socket. I have just been layed off so have some time. I was
thinking about going to Tignes. I have some experience with towing,
from farm work. I am prepared for some level of hardship if I can go
skiing for cheap, but do not want to die frozen in my caravan ;-).

How should I go about buying one? I am in Anglesea ATM, live in
Cambridge and will be around Berkshire for some time. I was looking
at ebay, and it looks like there are some cheap ones, see [1] and [2].

What weight can I tow with my car? How do I find what weight a
caravan is?

Anything I should check on a cheap caravan? I am used to buying
second hand cars. Should I take it for a test drive?

snip

a few cheap ones here too

http://www.autotrader.co.uk/CARAVANS/caravans.jsp

--
Steve Parry

http://www.gwynfryn.co.uk

http://www.arrivedeprived.org.uk/

K100RS SE
F650
(not forgetting the SK90PY)


  #7 (permalink)  
Old October 11th 04, 02:22 PM posted to uk.rec.caravanning
Steve Parry
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 98
Default Getting a cheap caravan and going skiing now

In om,
David Jones fumbled, fiddled and fingered:
Hi,

I have just concocted a plan to go to some glacier skiing for a month
or so before the main skiing season. I thought about living in a
caravan. I have a rover 218 turbo deisel (L reg) with tow bar +
electric socket. I have just been layed off so have some time. I was
thinking about going to Tignes. I have some experience with towing,
from farm work. I am prepared for some level of hardship if I can go
skiing for cheap, but do not want to die frozen in my caravan ;-).

How should I go about buying one? I am in Anglesea ATM, live in
Cambridge and will be around Berkshire for some time. I was looking
at ebay, and it looks like there are some cheap ones, see [1] and [2].

What weight can I tow with my car? How do I find what weight a
caravan is?

Anything I should check on a cheap caravan? I am used to buying
second hand cars. Should I take it for a test drive?

snip

a few cheap ones here too

http://www.autotrader.co.uk/CARAVANS/caravans.jsp

--
Steve Parry

http://www.gwynfryn.co.uk

http://www.arrivedeprived.org.uk/

K100RS SE
F650
(not forgetting the SK90PY)


  #8 (permalink)  
Old October 11th 04, 08:45 PM posted to uk.rec.caravanning
Eddie
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 3
Default Getting a cheap caravan and going skiing now

"Steve Parry" wrote in message ...
In om,
David Jones fumbled, fiddled and fingered:
Hi,

I have just concocted a plan to go to some glacier skiing for a month
or so before the main skiing season. I thought about living in a
caravan. I have a rover 218 turbo deisel (L reg) with tow bar +
electric socket. I have just been layed off so have some time. I was
thinking about going to Tignes. I have some experience with towing,
from farm work. I am prepared for some level of hardship if I can go
skiing for cheap, but do not want to die frozen in my caravan ;-).

How should I go about buying one? I am in Anglesea ATM, live in
Cambridge and will be around Berkshire for some time. I was looking
at ebay, and it looks like there are some cheap ones, see [1] and [2].

What weight can I tow with my car? How do I find what weight a
caravan is?

Anything I should check on a cheap caravan? I am used to buying
second hand cars. Should I take it for a test drive?
--

Steve Parry

http://www.gwynfryn.co.uk

http://www.arrivedeprived.org.uk/

K100RS SE
F650
(not forgetting the SK90PY)


snip

a few cheap ones here too

http://www.autotrader.co.uk/CARAVANS/caravans.jsp


I think my advice would be - don't! However, if you're really keen -
Check for leaks around the roof line, especially at the front top
corners. Are the beds/seats okay, or old and uncomfortable.. Make sure
the tyres aren't old, perished or cracked or have bulges. Do the
brakes work, think where you're going! Does the loo work (a cassette
toilet is best if you can get a 'van with one) and the other
appliances. Is the floor sound? Look underneath. I've seen some
amazing bodges under there.
Make sure it has a flued heater, one that you can leave on all night.
Early caravans didn't have them, say, pre '85 at a rough guess. You
WILL need one! I once froze in a 'van at Aviemore in June in the early
80's. Take spare gas cylinders as European ones won't usually fit, and
try to take big ones as you'll get through a few in a month! Adaptors
for foreign gas cyls. are available if you can find them... No Calor
Gas in France. Propane is better at low temps, butane can freeze up
the fittings.. Also, if it's freezing at night and you can be sure it
will be, bring water containers in at night. If you find a good site
with a good toilet block, you'll only need water to cook and drink
anyway.
It's not usual to take a caravan for a test drive, but for goodness
sake DON'T be tempted to get a big one, I'd go no bigger than a 12 or
13 footer with your car and also considering the journey!! Weights are
usually on a plate on the front chassis near the tow hitch or near the
door. There should be many web sites where you can check the ideal
weight for your car, but lightest is best for that trip. Take a spare
towing socket and plug, a spare wheel for the caravan will be
essential. I've been to the Tignes area many times although I haven't
driven there, but it's a very long way, almost in Italy, and the last
part is a good climb and the road is narrowish and twisty for a main
route. Don't want to knacker the car, do you? If you break down and
towing a long way with an old car it's likely, so think about the
consequences. With no breakdown insurance you may end up leaving it
all behind and thumbing back.. Take a spare fanbelt and radiator hoses
for the car and change the antifreeze AND the brake fluid and check
the pads etc.!! Good tyres will be required as it may well snow! You
may require snowchains, on some alpine roads they're a legal
requirement in France. By the time you've bought your 'van, even a
cheapie (500-1,000?), and fitted it and the car out for a winter
trip ('s), paid for the ferry (300?) and driven there and back,
paid for fuel (300-400?) and bought breakdown cover (100?),
personally I'd get the train or fly/bus and stay in cheap
self-catering accommodation, which should be readily available out of
season. It may be cheaper and a lot less hassle! Check the Tignes
website for snow conditions and maybe accommodation. (
http://www.tignes.net/ ) Good luck!
  #9 (permalink)  
Old October 11th 04, 08:45 PM posted to uk.rec.caravanning
Eddie
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 3
Default Getting a cheap caravan and going skiing now

"Steve Parry" wrote in message ...
In om,
David Jones fumbled, fiddled and fingered:
Hi,

I have just concocted a plan to go to some glacier skiing for a month
or so before the main skiing season. I thought about living in a
caravan. I have a rover 218 turbo deisel (L reg) with tow bar +
electric socket. I have just been layed off so have some time. I was
thinking about going to Tignes. I have some experience with towing,
from farm work. I am prepared for some level of hardship if I can go
skiing for cheap, but do not want to die frozen in my caravan ;-).

How should I go about buying one? I am in Anglesea ATM, live in
Cambridge and will be around Berkshire for some time. I was looking
at ebay, and it looks like there are some cheap ones, see [1] and [2].

What weight can I tow with my car? How do I find what weight a
caravan is?

Anything I should check on a cheap caravan? I am used to buying
second hand cars. Should I take it for a test drive?
--

Steve Parry

http://www.gwynfryn.co.uk

http://www.arrivedeprived.org.uk/

K100RS SE
F650
(not forgetting the SK90PY)


snip

a few cheap ones here too

http://www.autotrader.co.uk/CARAVANS/caravans.jsp


I think my advice would be - don't! However, if you're really keen -
Check for leaks around the roof line, especially at the front top
corners. Are the beds/seats okay, or old and uncomfortable.. Make sure
the tyres aren't old, perished or cracked or have bulges. Do the
brakes work, think where you're going! Does the loo work (a cassette
toilet is best if you can get a 'van with one) and the other
appliances. Is the floor sound? Look underneath. I've seen some
amazing bodges under there.
Make sure it has a flued heater, one that you can leave on all night.
Early caravans didn't have them, say, pre '85 at a rough guess. You
WILL need one! I once froze in a 'van at Aviemore in June in the early
80's. Take spare gas cylinders as European ones won't usually fit, and
try to take big ones as you'll get through a few in a month! Adaptors
for foreign gas cyls. are available if you can find them... No Calor
Gas in France. Propane is better at low temps, butane can freeze up
the fittings.. Also, if it's freezing at night and you can be sure it
will be, bring water containers in at night. If you find a good site
with a good toilet block, you'll only need water to cook and drink
anyway.
It's not usual to take a caravan for a test drive, but for goodness
sake DON'T be tempted to get a big one, I'd go no bigger than a 12 or
13 footer with your car and also considering the journey!! Weights are
usually on a plate on the front chassis near the tow hitch or near the
door. There should be many web sites where you can check the ideal
weight for your car, but lightest is best for that trip. Take a spare
towing socket and plug, a spare wheel for the caravan will be
essential. I've been to the Tignes area many times although I haven't
driven there, but it's a very long way, almost in Italy, and the last
part is a good climb and the road is narrowish and twisty for a main
route. Don't want to knacker the car, do you? If you break down and
towing a long way with an old car it's likely, so think about the
consequences. With no breakdown insurance you may end up leaving it
all behind and thumbing back.. Take a spare fanbelt and radiator hoses
for the car and change the antifreeze AND the brake fluid and check
the pads etc.!! Good tyres will be required as it may well snow! You
may require snowchains, on some alpine roads they're a legal
requirement in France. By the time you've bought your 'van, even a
cheapie (500-1,000?), and fitted it and the car out for a winter
trip ('s), paid for the ferry (300?) and driven there and back,
paid for fuel (300-400?) and bought breakdown cover (100?),
personally I'd get the train or fly/bus and stay in cheap
self-catering accommodation, which should be readily available out of
season. It may be cheaper and a lot less hassle! Check the Tignes
website for snow conditions and maybe accommodation. (
http://www.tignes.net/ ) Good luck!
  #10 (permalink)  
Old October 11th 04, 11:12 PM posted to uk.rec.caravanning
Alex Heney
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 546
Default Getting a cheap caravan and going skiing now

On 10 Oct 2004 23:38:43 -0700, (David Jones)
wrote:

Hi,

I have just concocted a plan to go to some glacier skiing for a month
or so before the main skiing season. I thought about living in a
caravan. I have a rover 218 turbo deisel (L reg) with tow bar +
electric socket. I have just been layed off so have some time. I was
thinking about going to Tignes. I have some experience with towing,
from farm work. I am prepared for some level of hardship if I can go
skiing for cheap, but do not want to die frozen in my caravan ;-).

How should I go about buying one? I am in Anglesea ATM, live in
Cambridge and will be around Berkshire for some time. I was looking
at ebay, and it looks like there are some cheap ones, see [1] and [2].

What weight can I tow with my car? How do I find what weight a
caravan is?


Not sure what weight you can tow with your car, because I don't know
the details of a Rover 218. You shouldn't tow any more than 85% of the
kerbside weight of the car, or any more than the Manufacturers towing
limit - whichever is the LOWER of the two.

Anything I should check on a cheap caravan? I am used to buying
second hand cars. Should I take it for a test drive?


There is unlikely to be much point in taking it for a test drive. As
others have said, look for damp, particularly in the corners.

If you are going to be in it for any length of time, make sure it has
mains electricity. It will usually cost slightly more per night if you
want a hook up on site, but it will work out cheaper than trying to
run a fridge and heater on gas long-term, and you will be able to keep
the battery fully charged at no extra cost.

Another thing is that most UK 'vans will come with fittings for Calor
gas cylinders, but those are not available on the continent. You will
need an adapter to use Camping Gaz. And if you are going to be there
when temperatures are regularly significantly below zero C, you will
be wanting to use propane, rather than the more common butane.

I noticed that the adverts mentioned gas heaters. Are they safe to
use while asleap? Do you get automatic ones (with thermostats)?


They are perfectly safe to use while asleep. They must all (by law)
have the flame sealed from the inside of the 'van (also true of gas
fridges).

But you will be better off (if you have mains electricity) using a 1
or 2 Kw fan heater. Some sites will not supply enough current to use a
2Kw one without blowing the trip switches, but most will, particularly
ones open in winter, in cold areas.

Very few (if any) gas heaters have thermostatic controls


Does anyone know of sites near glaciers?


Sorry, I don't know. The only time I have taken the 'van to the Alps
was for a summer holiday, in the Annecy area, which would be too far
from the glaciers for your wants.

Any other hints? What do you think of my plan? Any good intro sites?


Sounds like a good plan to me.
--
Alex Heney, Global Villager
Never deprive someone of hope; it may be all they have.

To reply by email, my address is alexATheneyDOTplusDOTcom
 



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