Jump to content
Sign in to follow this  
chiloschista

Caravanning and flying models

Recommended Posts

chiloschista

Hi ensemble,

 

after a search on this forum I did not find a lot about this subject, so I would start a discussion about it.

I am not new to camping, nor flying, but am about caravanning. So it would be nice to know other's experiences about travelling towing a caravan and a car full of gliders.

From my side I have few questions from start.

I will come in UK at end of July and head toward South Wales. I had already from some of you (thank you very much :) ) several suggestions about slopes etc.

I would like to know right know how it goes about campings.

 

Is it mandatory to book or we will find place with ease (South Wales, around Swansea etc.)?

We would eventually move a couple of times, one being the Welsh fest.

 

Is it allowed, in general, in UK to stay for a night on highways or other stops?

 

I'm installing a 100W solar panel, with a 105Ah battery, for several reason.

I guess I would be almost independent from mains, but don't know how it would be, dealing with UK weather. Having been a dozen times in UK I know it is really varied :P .

I don't have a TV (what? camping watching TV !?, I guess we will be very busy repairing gliders ...), just few lamps, water pump and, of course, battery chargers. A PC will be used to do some RC related works, for short time.

 

Would this be enough in UK for our usages?

 

Other experiences, suggestions, impressions etc will be really appreciated.

Thanks and best regards,

Ric

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Jef Ott

Hydro-electric power might be more suitable, I believe the sun shone in Wales two years ago, so that's about it for the next 3 or 4 years.

 

:lol:

 

Sorry I could not resist.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Andy_B

John Trebel is the man to ask . he spent a week on Lundy with just a solar panel for charging

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
chiloschista

John Trebel is the man to ask . he spent a week on Lundy with just a solar panel for charging

That's interesting ...

 

Hydro-electric power might be more suitable, I believe the sun shone in Wales two years ago, so that's about it for the next 3 or 4 years.

 

:lol:

 

Sorry I could not resist.

An evaluated option was wind but yes, you should be on the right track. How did I not get it before? We have plenty of experience here in South Switzerland with water power converted in electricity :P

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
oipigface

John Trebel is the man to ask . he spent a week on Lundy with just a solar panel for charging

 

John Treble knows nothing about caravans and not a lot about camp sites (Mike Evans is your man for that, I think), but Andy is right... Mark and I spent a week at the property called Tibbetts on Lundy a couple of years ago. Tibbetts has no electricity supply. We began the week with a fully charged lead-acid battery, which we topped up with a solar panel during the day, and used to charge planes at night. This worked pretty well. I've forgotten exactly why, but we did use the power supply at the Lundy pub on one occasion. If you are in a caravan, or camper, then you have the luxury of being able to charge from your vehicle's battery as well.

I have recently tried charging using a 12v charger and regulator, but this wasn't very satisfactory because the charger switched itself off every time the sun went in (or someone walked in front of the panel).

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
John T

For sites try:

 

The Caravan Club

The Caravan and Camping Club

 

Some of the sites listed on the above require membership, some don't.

CL (certified locations) allow 5 caravans, usually have basic facilities, some have electric, yet are cheaper (around £10 a night).

 

Try ukcampsites.co.uk as they provide a list of reviews for most caravan/camp sites in the uk and also list them.

 

Booking is probably recommeded if you are visiting in the school holiday season, mid july to early september. Or at least book the first few nights to give you time to look at other sites in the area.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
chiloschista

John Treble knows nothing about caravans and not a lot about camp sites (Mike Evans is your man for that, I think), but Andy is right... Mark and I spent a week at the property called Tibbetts on Lundy a couple of years ago. Tibbetts has no electricity supply. We began the week with a fully charged lead-acid battery, which we topped up with a solar panel during the day, and used to charge planes at night. This worked pretty well. I've forgotten exactly why, but we did use the power supply at the Lundy pub on one occasion. If you are in a caravan, or camper, then you have the luxury of being able to charge from your vehicle's battery as well.

I have recently tried charging using a 12v charger and regulator, but this wasn't very satisfactory because the charger switched itself off every time the sun went in (or someone walked in front of the panel).

Thanks for the input, this reminded me that I have a Thunderpower charger capable of charching PB batteries (hopefully AGM also) up to 10A.

Charging with the car would be more demanding: another charger (no way!) or another study about electric layout (idem!). Please don't suggest leaving the engine running while the battery is hooked with cables :huh:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
chiloschista

For sites try:

 

The Caravan Club

The Caravan and Camping Club

 

Some of the sites listed on the above require membership, some don't.

CL (certified locations) allow 5 caravans, usually have basic facilities, some have electric, yet are cheaper (around £10 a night).

 

Try ukcampsites.co.uk as they provide a list of reviews for most caravan/camp sites in the uk and also list them.

 

Booking is probably recommeded if you are visiting in the school holiday season, mid july to early september. Or at least book the first few nights to give you time to look at other sites in the area.

That's useful information. I already went through ukcampsites.co.uk and found several campings.

I didn't know about certified locations instead. Those seems really nice, but on the mentioned sites I found members only sites.

I'm prone to book in advance, just to spare some time better devoted flying, but should finally decide where and how long.

Just still don't have an exact plan what to do (which slopes go fly, how far are they, beaches for landboarding etc ...).

 

As I enter UK at Dover on Monday night, would it be possible to stay overnight in a highway park, as I usually do it here?

Maybe before we enter M25.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Austin

 

 

As I enter UK at Dover on Monday night, would it be possible to stay overnight in a highway park, as I usually do it here?

Maybe before we enter M25.

 

This country is not the same, there is normally a 2 hour limit and you might well have to pay for parking overnight £10-£25 in any of the service stations. Definitely read any signs in the service station before doing so. I would look for a CL site near to the motorway and stop there overnight.  

 

http://motorwayservicesonline.co.uk/Parking

 

CL Sites http://www.caravanclub.co.uk/uk-holidays/certificated-locations/staying-at-a-cl/

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
chiloschista

Thanks for the links, especially the first one.

As trucks travel in UK also I did guess that they would stop overnight at highways parks, like in the entire Europe and this would be tolerated for caravans too :) .

Paying is not the problem. I consider normal paying for services and £14.- including a £6.- meal voucher seems not so bad.

Here in Switzerland there are few highways gas stations that offer parking overnight for €15.-. All other are free.

I was just interested if this is legal or tolerated.

 

John T. already pointed me toward CL, but I'm not able to watch at them without a Caravanclub membership.

 

I found a camping with landboard suggestions also, so my son will be happy twice. I'm getting close.

Thank you all very much for your precious inputs :)

Ric

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Scram

Hi Ric,

 

I'm one of those taking a caravan to the Welshfest after having a week in Cornwall flying St. Agnes Head and other places maybe under the guidance of Bear.

 

We are members of the Caravan Club which has exclusive sites for their members.  The other club mentioned should properly be called "the Camping and Caravaning Club".  I don't know if their sites are exclusive for use of club members.  The CL sites are exclusive to the Caravan Club.

 

In England it is not allowed to stay over-night in your caravan parked on a road or beside the road, in a layby maybe.  A policeman may knock on your door if you do  :huh:

 

As John said there are also lots of sites which are not tied to either of these clubs but you mostly need to book to get a place.  Just use Google or your favourite search engine, to find campsites in UK.  Sometimes you can see signs beside the road pointing to campsites.  I have not tried just turning up and hoping to get a pitch,

 

Our caravan has a fixed bed so the space under the mattress is where I transport my gliders, plenty room and nice and safe.  We have an awning (tent-like structure) attached to the 'van and I made a rack which stands against the side of the van and holds all my models, easy access but out of the way.  The rack takes to pieces for transport.

 

At the Bunkhouse, I understand, there will be a single electrical supply available so it will have to be shared by the campers for battery charging etc. if necessary.

 

I hope this helps.  See you in Wales.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
chiloschista

Hi Scram

 

yes, nice to know how other do.

I have a box on the car roof with plenty of space for planes, so the caravan inner space must not be shared with them. I know I will for sure damage one or more in it otherwise ...

 

About electricity I'm trying to be autonomous, but not sure I will get there for UK travel.

 

For sleeping out of campings I guess an allowed, paying highway park should work (where do sleep truck drivers?).

Reading a little more about those parkings I discovered that prices can rise to more than £20/25.-, but including a £9/10.- meal voucher.

Btw, reading on the caravan forums seems free camping in UK is a grey zone, with rules like 100m away from roads etc ...

If things go really bad I head toward Amersham and stay at my cousin restaurant. It just will take some hours to go there and after a day long trip I would like to avoid it.

Yes, looking forward to meet several of you at slopes,

Ric

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
chiloschista

... swapping all the bulbs with LED ones. Should spare some 50W :)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
chiloschista

Thanks Austin's links I found what could be a good solution for the first night:

http://motorwayservicesonline.co.uk/Cobham

So the second travel day will be shorter, but other suggestions will be welcome.

 

I booked then a week at Pitton Cross, which seems devoted to landboard activities so my son will be happy with the surprise (a promise is a promise!).

I know we are getting days full of kiting and slope flying, because I'm running out of my annual rain contingent here at home :lol:

Ric

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Scram

Hi Scram

 

 

 

For sleeping out of campings I guess an allowed, paying highway park should work (where do sleep truck drivers?).

 

Yes, looking forward to meet several of you at slopes,

Ric

 

That is a very good question.  Of course they sleep anywhere at the sides of the roads, in layby's.  Seems there may be one rule for them and another for the rest of us.

 

We will be at the Welshfest Bunkhouse on Saturday 2nd Aug

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
chiloschista

Hi,

 

anyone experienced with inverters?

Is it really worth a pure sine wave one?

Does a modified sine wave really have problems?

I'm swapping the bulbs with LED ones. I have a couple of fluorescent tubes also. I would use a laptop and several battery chargers, for RC items, cellular phones, cams etc.

The RC chargers could eventually be connected directly to the battery.

Thanks for inputs :)

Ric

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
John T

If you are talking sine waves, oipigface (Mr Treble senior) is your man.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
isoaritfirst

I have caravaned for many years and until recently rarely had electric hook up. I have been away for 5 weeks in one go without too many problems. 

Just use the caravan battery during the day for running pumps etc and plug the car in each night. If you do a few miles in the car the next day all will be fine. You could also add a second battery to the car, installed in the boot if nowhere else is suitable.

 

Many sites and also garages will charge batteries for a very small cost if you need to top the caravan battery up.

 

Normally when visiting the Gower I stay on Bank Farm. very conveniently located within a short walk of Horton and Port Eynon. I normally stay on their rally field with the Camping and Caravaning club who hold a meet here for several weeks end of July - August.

You can turn up and join on the field. Cost of membership will be recouped within a few days with the difference in cost between the comercial site and the rally field and all facilities are open to you just the same. Normally lots of space a good view and a few fields that I use to fly the odd hand launch or electric models in.

I was expecting to go this year but circumstance may mean that I will need to stay close to home.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
chiloschista

I have caravaned for many years and until recently rarely had electric hook up. I have been away for 5 weeks in one go without too many problems. 

Just use the caravan battery during the day for running pumps etc and plug the car in each night. If you do a few miles in the car the next day all will be fine. You could also add a second battery to the car, installed in the boot if nowhere else is suitable.

 

Many sites and also garages will charge batteries for a very small cost if you need to top the caravan battery up.

 

Normally when visiting the Gower I stay on Bank Farm. very conveniently located within a short walk of Horton and Port Eynon. I normally stay on their rally field with the Camping and Caravaning club who hold a meet here for several weeks end of July - August.

You can turn up and join on the field. Cost of membership will be recouped within a few days with the difference in cost between the comercial site and the rally field and all facilities are open to you just the same. Normally lots of space a good view and a few fields that I use to fly the odd hand launch or electric models in.

I was expecting to go this year but circumstance may mean that I will need to stay close to home.

Thanks! That's very promising. I should be ok then with the solar panel, if ever I get to mount it and arrange a good connection. My plan is to install an inverter and a priority circuit. So if I have mains I use it, otherwise the circuit switches to battery and inverter. This is the simplest solution I found, avoiding redoing all the 12V circuit. I have a 7pins plug so no connection to the car.

This way I loss a bit of efficiency, but it should work as a starting point. Then, after testing, I could plan a better circuit (or leave it this way and build flying models instead :D ).

How do you connect the second battery to the car?

 

Bank Farm was on top of my list of preferences, but I choose otherwise because of the kiting and landboarding offer. This was a promise to my son two years ago already, when we were in Cornwall, but the local kiting company did not show being really serious. So I hope doing a nice surprise to my son (and me also), beside all the flying activities we plan to do.

 

Maybe we go there after Welsh fest.

 

Ric

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
chiloschista

John Treble knows nothing about caravans and not a lot about camp sites (Mike Evans is your man for that, I think), but Andy is right...

 

 

If you are talking sine waves, oipigface (Mr Treble senior) is your man.

... mhmm, little by little I'm getting the suburban dynamics that reign this forum :rolleyes:  (the youngs seems having a little bit more reverence ...)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Restore formatting

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Sign in to follow this  

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

We have placed cookies on your device to help make this website better. You can adjust your cookie settings, otherwise we'll assume you're okay to continue.