Blog: In the beginning.

What happened?  Where did the time go?  Where did I go?
The truth is, we’ve been so busy getting on with having a clear-out, I’ve not had the time to update.
But I’ve a very important new years resolution to keep, I must organise myself better so I can put a bit more time into this blog. Good luck with that I tell myself, then Christmas got in the way & I was forced to sit back & relax a bit. Phew.
So here I am, with a bit of time on my hands & loads of news to get up here, so here goes.

End Oct.2014 – Charlie has been found !

Ooo la la, Charlie was living in France, we will soon have him sworn in.

Ooo la la, Charlie was living in France, we will soon have him sworn in.

So we start, at the very beginning shall we say, at the beginning of the future.

Now, it’s all very well ‘talking the talk’, visiting MoHo (MoHo = Motorhome from here on in) shows, buying a few bits & bobs for life on the road & way of life that doesn’t actually exist yet, but it’s a very different feeling when you are investing a vast amount of the money you’ve both slogged for over the past couple of decades into a box on wheels, your primary residence for the forseeable future. Not a decision you can take lightly. Hours & hours have been spent (& many wasted) trawling the web for MoHo’s who ‘tick all the boxes’. So before we get into introductions, the following are our list of ‘The specifications’, in no particular order.

  • Must be a robust make/model.
    Having spent hours reading & researching travel blogs & forums, (thanks go out to all) one name seems to be coming forward a lot, Burstner. Based on opinions & the MoHo’s we have seen first hand at shows, Burstner would be a preference, but not essential. The base unit will be dictated by the following:-
  • Size.
    Easy, once I’d confirmed a few things with other trailblazers.
    Weight, Sub 3500kgs. Accessibility & cost issues over 3500kgs.
    Length, Sub 7m. Again, the “sub 3500kgs” would rule out most MoHo’s over 7m anyhow.
    Height, sub 3m would be preferrable, as a few tolls do charge more for vehicles over 3m, ….not many.
  • Driving position:
    MUST be LHD. End of! With experience of driving in Europe & due to the fact that my passenger has a habit of dropping off, sweeping right hand bends, with a give way, are nearly impossible to negotiate in a RHD anything & suicidal in a van without a left side ‘traffic spotter’. Must be LHD.
  • Layout:
    I thought about the space we ‘use’ at home & our habits, sure some habits would change once we were on the road, but being an ex-tugger, we have a little experience about what space we need. A BIG issue which people seem to either not require ( I don’t get it) or forget about entirely is, the ‘Crash out lounge’ area.
    Imagine: It’s raining, or your both a bit down or ill or have just come back from a 10km walk & you just want to crash, put kettle on & watch a good film. I don’t mean in bed, I mean a type of sofa, each. Somewhere to crash of an evening & watch a bit of TV if you wanted to. Not so easy in a MoHo sub 7m, most of the lay-outs seem to be too short. Most of the time, my preference would be outside, but realistically this will not always possible, rain, cold, insects, space available & ground conditions may confine you to the van for a few days from time to time. Plenty of this type of lay-out utilising twin beds or over 7.5m, neither of which we want. Mmmm…this, one may be a problem. On the subject of a bed, a fully made up double (none French type) is a must for long-term traveling. I also don’t fancy an “A Type” pull-down, I don’t think I would sleep so well if I was constantly worrying about falling out. A transverse bed made sense to me, at a typical 2.3m wide, most vans are the perfect width for a bed & so cutting down on the length of the van or simply generating more usable space in the living area.

Generous payload.
We like to get around a bit, maybe a bit farther than push bikes would alow sometimes, so the decision was made to get a moped & ped-rack on the back, so we calculated the pay-load would need to be in the 500kgs + range to allow for the 100-125kgs of ped. & push bikes, add to that an underslung tank for LPG, extra batteries, satellite dish, all the toys, (kayak, tables chairs etc) plus your provisions & you will soon be reaching the top end of your allowance.

So all-in-all, it’s not too much to ask is it? But I’m glad to report ‘most’ of the ‘boxes have been ticked’.

 

 

 

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