Motor Mover Re-visited

Well as I said in the last post it turned out that the small jockey wheel type motor mover we bought did not do the job we wanted. It worked great on tarmac and solid concrete but failed miserably on gravel and grass.

Caravan Mover

So we had to bite the bullet and invest in a larger Caravan Mover. Not wanting to spend over £600 on a new one we went back to Ebay and found the above – a reconditioned one (it had new bearings and a paint job) for £300 plus £47 for delivery.

It was delivered a few days later on a half pallet in the back of a large lorry. I had already downloaded the installation manual from the web but was a bit concerned when I saw the normal fitting was to a standard 209mm chassis. I thought this might be an issue as Betty’s chassis is nothing like that.

C Mover normal

With everything unloaded off the pallet I spent quite a while thinking and test positioning the motor assemblies.

The before under view of Betty.

Betty Before

Then it came to me – why not mount the units the other way up – so that’s what I did. It did require accurate positioning and drilling of 2 holes each side for the U-bolts but when it was all done it worked well.

The underview after fitting.

Betty AfterC Mover Betty

I just had to get the motor wires connected the right way – to match the direction arrows on the controller.

With the drive rollers engaged we can now move Betty using the remote control. It has moved very well on all the terrain we have tried so far and we are confident we now have the right setup ready for our first big trip next month.

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.