First Weekend Follow-up

Well after returning from our first trip I set about sorting the list of jobs to be done. The first was to repair the Motor Mover and make something to get it up higher during transit. I came up with a load of steel as shown here.

Replacing the shredded tyre was easier than I thought (and cheaper – at less than £10) just three screws and the usual multi-screwdriver three hand operation to get it off the rim. I also decided to give it a coat of paint while I had it apart – not really my forte but it should keep the rust at bay for a while longer. Just got to paint the steel work – can’t decide between Black or Silver but I can’t wait too long as the rust has already started to form.

On Voyager herself things were easier (mostly) with the addition of key hooks at the door, coat hooks and a light in the wardrobe plus a towel rail and hooks in the bathroom.

Wardrobe Light

The designated shower area in the bathroom is definitely not big enough for us but we had an idea about using a shower curtain to protect the bits that are best kept dry. It had me wondering for a while but I decided to test the bendability of plastic curtain track. It proved perfect as you can see.

One thing we didn’t mention before was that the 6Kg Calor Gas bottle ran out while we were away (luckily after making breakfast on our last day). The gas locker has room for two bottles so I looked at getting an exchange bottle and a second bottle from Calor. This would have cost £26 for the exchange plus £66 for a new one with an additional £40 for a Cylinder Refill Agreement. A total of £132 with a re-occurring cost of £52 for each 12Kg of gas (£4.33/Kg). My next thought was to get some larger bottles, Voyager’s specification is 2 x 7Kg bottles, but I’ve seen on other Blogs that some people have fitted larger ones. Calor sell a 13Kg bottle and a pair would just fit in the locker. The initial cost would be £216 with recurring costs of £66 for 26Kg of gas (£2.54/Kg). I then looked at Autogas which costs about £1.10 per Kg (you actually pay per litre but that’s roughly what it is per Kg). I found a 2 x 11Kg cylinder kit with all the necessary pipes etc. for £340 which is the option we decided on. A bit more upfront cost but with full refills costing £24 we save every time we fill up. The weather being what it is in the UK I reckon we will save the additional cost of this system within the first year.

Mary has also been busy looking into where we go for our next expedition. She has found and booked a long weekend at Galmpton Touring Park near Paignton, Devon for the first Bank Holiday in May. Hopefully the weather will be better than last time.


We have also booked Voyager in with Glide-rite (at the end of May) for a hydraulic levelling system, see – it’s a big scary cost but much easier than using the levelling ramps – more on that nearer the time.

Tester Weekend

Well here we are in the middle of March with very changeable weather. Last Tuesday afternoon we drove over the Seven Bridge in brilliant sunshine with temperatures in the high teens. Yesterday (Friday) we drove from home to Brean Somerset for our inaugural stay in Voyager. The day was fair temperature low teens with a little wind. Good enough to drive in with no problems and get setup when we arrived at Unity Farm Camp site.

Unity Offer

We had gone to Wales to collect a ‘Motor Mover’ we had bought on Ebay. We had decided it was a good idea to get one as moving Betty (the box trailer) when it is fully loaded had proved more than a little difficult. Well she does weigh nearly half a ton with two mobility scooters a wheelchair and the pipes, cables, chairs and tools we need to carry.

As we were so close to going away for the first time all I did was get the necessary power connection to drive the mover sorted and fit it as a direct replacement for the jockey wheel.

On Friday morning I used the ‘Mover’ to get Betty from her home position out onto the road ready to connect to Voyager. All worked great – I was well pleased. I even remembered to take a photo before we left.

Voyager Betty

At Gordano services on the M5 we stopped (in the Lorry Park area) for a bite of lunch. I jumped out and checked everything was tight on Betty and found that the Mover had lowered itself and the tyre had been dragging on the ground for some of the journey – presumably caused by the vibration. I re-secured it up and hoped for the best.

When we arrived at Brean and had been shown to our pitch I disconnected Betty and immediately found that the Mover had a flat tyre. Luckily the site was totally flat so manoeuvring Betty manually was not too difficult. On further investigation I found a completely knackered tyre so I have another job to do when we get home – fit a new tyre (and inner tube I’m sure) and design and build a structure to get the Mover higher during transit.

Well if that’s the only issue we have I reckon we have done well. The rest of our stay has been great. We nipped out on the scooters (Dolly & Gordon) to find a post-box and see the sea. All good but a bit breezy.

Mary Nigel Brean Beach

Mary cooked Cod loin in Parsley sauce with mash, carrots & sweetcorn for our evening meal. Absolutely great (and the first test of Voyagers oven).

All the sleeping arrangements worked well. The heating keeping us nice and toasty throughout the night. The rain and howling gales outside didn’t stop us sleeping through although we were concerned that the rocking might have caused us to feel sea sick – luckily it didn’t.

I did scrambled eggs with bacon for breakfast – hard to get that wrong. Then we decided to go out for a bit of fresh air. We did about 4 miles on the scooters bought some fruit and a paper (oh and a cream cake) as well as looking at the sea again (still too cold, windy and wet).

Back to the van for a warming lunch and a siesta. Might try the Bingo tonight.

We have got a list of things to get sorted – nothing drastic just coat hooks on the inside of the wardrobe and bathroom doors, a bin for the dinette area, key hook for by the door and a longer hose for filling the water tank.

Just a couple of pics of Betty to finish.