Friday, 2 October 2009

On the move

Have finally got the camper in use. First trial run was a short trip to the Beautiful Days music festival at Ottery StMary in Devon. It was my first chance to weigh in the camper and see how it handle on the the road. I knew the springs on the truck were worn as it's had over 160k of builders loads so made the first trip short.

The load was approx. 850kg which is approx. 200kg more than I wanted but this is largely due to compromising on the cost of more expensive light weight materials. The material cost was only approx. two thirds of what I budgeted for. It drove quite well for its height and made the 40 mile round trip ok but the truck does need new springs.

S0 got on to and bought a nice set of new springs for the truck and fitted them with the help of a few beers. Its a simple job and took me a leisurely 5 hours

These are a standard replacement spring but the truck stands approx. 50mm higher. You can see by the picture of the new and old springs how worn they were.

With the new springs on time for another test drive. This time the Doon valley, Exmoor. The drive was much improved and copped well with the hills and lanes of Devon.

It still needs a bit of paint and a few trims finishing inside but apart from that this ones done.

Am now designing the MK2. It's going to be at least 200kg lighter, slightly lower and built from scratch. I've a budget of five time the cost of the MK1. I am going to loose the steel frame and use a system of composite glue laminated panels that preferably interlock. Might not be till next year as still on drawing board.

Watch this space!