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Monday, 24 October 2011

A Not Totally Successful Trip

We returned from our second outing yesterday,a long weekend at Beechwood Grange near York which is a CC site,and very pleasant it is,the showers are excellent.The only drawback with the place is that it is virtually an island surrounded by very busy roads with poor provision of footpaths,so if you are walkers or cyclists these need to be negotiated setting off and on your return.One of the roads is the A64 which is virtually a two lane motorway,so be warned.I have read appraisals of the site which said traffic noise was a problem but we did not find it so.The site is also a little tricky to locate as it does not feature on road signs,only as a dead end,until you are at the lane where it is situated where a CC sign is located so a bit of a recce on Google Earth beforehand pays dividends.

When we picked the van up from storage,lo and behold the motor mover would not function again,so we had to manhandle it out of our storage space as it is a bit tight for the car.I deduced that the cause was a low battery,but more of that later.Then,due to stupidity,we managed to drop the front of the van on the floor whilst hitching up,don't ask.I managed to pick it up while SWMBO resecured the jockey wheel but I could feel my back starting to go ( I don't have the best back in the world in the first place ).No  problem towing the Orion,tows like a dream.

When we arrived at the site I made a total bollocks of trying to reverse it onto the pitch ( been on the CC course as well ),so resorted to trying the mover which I thought may work as the battery would have charged a bit during the trip,hardly a peep out of it.It put the rollers onto the wheels,albeit slowly, then wouldn't remove them.Suffice to say we now know how to remove Reich movers manually,so something learned.Once again manhandled the van into position and managed to drop the front on the floor again,lifted it up,my back went.A friendly fellow caravanner gave us some assistance and we eventually got sorted.

Spent a very pleasant long weekend,all the minor faults which we returned to the dealers for have been sorted out.I imagined that as the battery had been on EHU for three days then there would be sufficient oomph in it to manoeuvre the Orion across the pitch to facilitate hitching up without causing an obstruction on the site road.

No chance,so we hitched up where we were,couldn't get the 13-pin electric plug to go in properly,air got blue,got bollocked from wife,man from neighbouring van gave me a hand.

Prior to this our grandson,who had stopped with us for one night proceeded to fill the Thetford toilet cassette up again with the content of his lower bowel after I had emptied and cleaned it,grrrrrrr.

Arrived back at storage,of course no mover so it was back to manhandling.By this time I never wanted to see a caravan ever again,divorce was looming and rancour was in the air.

I have two Elecsol batteries which I rotate periodically keeping the one which is not in use on charge with a C-Tek smart charger.When I took the van to the dealer for the warranty work to be done they checked the mover and could find no fault and in fact I had hitched up with it,parked at the dealers with it,picked it up using it and reparked at the storage with it.I then realised that the other battery had been in situ and the fault must lie with just this battery not retaining a charge.

Today I returned the Elecsol to YC Leisure to swap it and it has to be said I was expecting  a bit of argy bargy or at least a demand that it be tested first,but no just a simple swap and I was on my way.Got the new battery on charge so we will see how it goes when I swap them over.

The back is on the mend and life looks a little more rosy today,perhaps we will go caravanning again.



  1. I got my 440-4 about a month after you, so it good to read your blog about your hi's and low's and compare them with my own.
    I dont know if this will help you with the 13 pin plug, but the guys who fitted my car electrics told me to ensure the little arrow on the caravan plug is at the 12o'clock position and the flat circular part is at the 9o'clock position before you push it in and turn it clockwise, also spray the plug with a thin coat of WD40 or simular stuff. it goes in easy every time now.
    Thanks for the info on the filter.

  2. Anonymous,

    The plug has gone in OK before,I think I was a bit annoyed about the mover,there was another van waiting to pass,and the car was at an angle,but thanks for the tip about WD 40,will try that.


  3. Second the plug comment, the inner and outer parts of the plug aren't fixed, mine rotated once.
    If the side isn't vertical when the arrow is at the top push the plug in a few millimeteres and twist to line up the side on the vertical, will go in fine then.

    Hope you get your mover issue resolved soon!

  4. Colin,

    Hopefully the motor mover problem is now sorted with the replacement battery.


  5. Is this the battery from ??? that's apparently caused a fuss on the forum?

  6. Colin,

    Yep that's the one,and seeing it's my blog it is an Elecsol!!

    I wouldn't mind but I was giving them some credit.