I'm doing up our Dino, which we were given two years ago, as a means to have a holiday. The first ever trip with our van resulted in breaking our car's gearbox, which was not totally unexpected, as it had been making noises for a while.
Gearbox fixed, we are now trying to get the van back into working order. In the two years it's been stood up, she's sprung a few leaks, and I've removed the ply from two walls and two ceiling panels. This has revield a lot of rotten wood, which I've nearly finished replacing all the rotten framing, and I'm refitted the door, with new seals.
What I'm looking for is some drawings of the electrics, and how the bunk bed was arranged. I don't have the upper bed, so I need to build one, which I could do, if I knew what it looked like, and how it was fitted.
Lots of old pics would be good, and any advice from former owners, would be nice.
I've managed to get a replacement kitchen window, which I'll fit tomorrow, and then it will be time to do a leak search, after all the rain we had today. Then, when I've sealed the leaks, I can repanel the inerior, and refut the kitchen.
We had a Luna Dino-Delux 15-4 but it was a long time ago and my memory is not what it used to be. See >> Here <<
No Diagrams and very few photos. The photo below shows a little of the bunk (along with grand son No2 who was a restless sleeper).
The bunk hinged arms were screwed into the blocks of wood either side of the window.
The Bunk Support legs are hinged to fold length ways along the bunk. The Mattress was quite thin and folded in the middle (length ways) with a flap that had 'Press Studs' that clipped on to the top of the fixed part of the Bunk Base board when the bunk was down.
Not much help, sorry, I will see if I have anything else.
Your drawing looks like what I have missing! I have the thin mattress which folds in two, but everything else was removed by the previous owner, although I do have one folding bracket. Your van looks like ours except the kitchen is on the other side from the bunk beds. Was the structure of the upper bed fairly sturdy? I've stripped out both walls and glued in new blocks, ready to replace the inner panels. I do like the minimal wood framing of the Dino. We had another old caravan which was all timber/rot, and repairing it would have been a life's work.
The original Dino skin on foam, with ply glued to it, to make a sandwich, makes for a strong, but simple construction, and easy to repair. I've found two roof leaks both opposite each other, in line with the roof vent, where the roof is not flat and ridged. Design error! But I can't change it. Other than that the door needed new rubber seals to stop it leaking and a new kitchen window, and a load of 1x1 to replace the frames, all big ticket items.
I'll try and take some pics of what I'm up to, if your interested?
Thanks for the offer, but I'm going to try and build a copy from Trooper's drawing.
I contacted Lunar, by Email and a very nice lady is going to send me a copy of the Dino Owner's manual, and some works pics of Dino's, which should help me sort out the bed problem.
Hi John, I'm glad the diagram has given you some ideas, yes the bunk was quite sturdy and relatively hefty for a lightweight caravan. Nice to see Luna are willing to help you out.
The Forum members and myself are always interested in Photos and they may help someone else doing a similar job.
Check the bolts that fix the floor to the Aluminium chassis. On ours the front bolts pulled through the floor and the body separated from the chassis. Easily fixed with new bolts and some aluminium angle (courtesy of the company I worked for )
Elnagh Clipper 90.......... Real Names Mike & Hazel
Where are these bolts you mentioned? I've had a look under the floor, and all the bolts I can see look OK. The underside of the ply is pealing off [about 1 ply], but no holes as yet. I'm thinking about back screwing some light ply to the underside to reinforce the original ply. Do you think that would be worth doing? Or can you lift the body and put in full sheets. The floor looks like its a foam sandwich, with ply on both sides.
I'm a life long railway preservationist, and I've worked on steam locomotives, and coaches, so doing this caravan is easy. The only snag I have is arthritis in my hands, and knees, which stop me from doing anything to physical. I just have to do things a bit slowly. It's all my fault, to many years of using heavy power tools, and hammers of all types, which have wrecked my wrists! I can just about cope with 3 ply!
Hi John, if I remember correctly there was an Aluminium Angle cross section at the front of the caravan, behind the gas box, I can not remember how it was attached to the 'A' frame (I think it was bolted with angle sections). This had a bolt at either end going through the caravan floor, no strengtheners in the floor for the extra loading. The bolts had ripped through the floor. Whilst leaving a site, I noticed the front of the caravan lifting as we crossed over a 'Speed Bump', we drove home with a rope from one front grab handle under the 'A' frame and tied to the other grab handle.
I don't know about screwing a lite ply to the floor, if it is only one ply I think I would coat under the floor with an 'Under Seal' type of product, but I am no expert, just someone who likes to get their hands dirty (now and again).
Elnagh Clipper 90.......... Real Names Mike & Hazel
I had a look and those bolts look fine from underneath.
I've unscrewed the wheel arch from the floor, but I can't get it loose from the wall. Using a saw, I've dragged out all the rotten hardboard, from the gap, and I'm thinking about just slotting the new ply in the gap with sealent, and screwing the wheel arch back, but there is a small bit of rot I could fix now.
Do you know how the wheel arch comes off completly?
OK, to give an idea of where I am, here are a few pics of work in progress.
This is the kitchen side of the caravan. I've stripped off all the rotten hardboard, built a new window frame, bought a replacement window unit, and replaced all the glued wooden mounting blocks. You'll see the wheel arch has been refitted with new mastic and screws, and the rotten wood, at the nearest end to the camera, has had a new section screwed and glued into the floor.
This is the back of the kitchen unit. It was simply screwed to the caravan wall, but because I have no way to clamp a large sheet to the wall and glue it, I've screwed and glued the panel to the unit, and then fitted it to the wall with screws.
The kitcjhen unit fitted to the wall. I've removed the old gas oven in favor of a microwave.
Just when I thought I'd killed all the rot, I found a bit more under the door. I've chopped it all out and treated the lower fram, which was still solid!
The caravan is not a big workshop, so I'm working from one side to the other. I have to build another window frame, and build a bunk bed as well as replacing the ply .
Trying to find things I can use is tricky though, and they have to be cheap, as this is a budget restoration.
I've re installed the fridge and got it working on mains, but the gas piping is a total mess. It was installed with no thought of neatness, just a rough connection to the gas valves to the fridge heater and cooker. All fairly unsafe looking, but it works. I have a set of 3 gas valves, but no proper mounting for them. I'm going to redo the gas with straight runs and proper elbows. rather than the Spaghetti I have now! :eek:
As I have no gas bottle, which type do I need? Camping Gas, or Propane? There is a fire alarm fitted, but should I buy a Co2 alarm? I don't see the cooker of fridge being a threat as they both are well ventilated, but the heater does not seem to have a chimney.
The rot in the door frame has been repaired and laminated flooring laid over the repairs, which give a nice strong level floor.
Reference the gas distribution manifold, I may have misread your post. You must screw the block with the isolation taps to a bulkhead or to the floor. If it is not firmly screwed down, inevitably it will vibrate when you are travelling. Any vibration will cause the copper gas pipes to work harden at the point of origin of the pivot about which the pipe is vibrating and the pipe will eventually crack and fail letting gas into the interior of the caravan with, potentially, lethal results. For the same reason, the copper gas pipes must be held to the floor or a bulkhead with "P" clips to stop them vibrating. Generally the pipe from the cylinder is rubber (make sure you use rubber hose designed for propane gas). It is then connected to the copper piping. The initial copper piping from the cylinder connection to the distribution manifold is best if it is 5/16th inch diameter then comes down to 1/4 inch diameter from the manifold to the appliances. This ensures that the volume of gas is able to keep the appliances supplied if more than one is in use at the same time. There is a caveat! The writer is only suggesting that the above is the way to go. If you don't feel confident to work with the gas supplies, it is best to get a qualified caravan service engineer, or a qualified gas fitter to carry out the installation. Any advice given here is given in good faith. Gas is dangerous stuff!!
With regard to which gas to use, avoid Camping Gas. It is very expensive on a kg. per kg. comparison with propane and butane and can be difficult to source. Almost any caravan site you go on will have replacement cylinders of butane or propane if you are unfortunate enough to run out of gas.
Either butane or propane is suitable for caravans of the vintage you are dealing with. Of the two, butane is fine in the summer but the evaporation of the gas gets very poor at around 4 degrees centigrade and ceases at around 0 degrees centigrade. It follows that if you are camping/caravanning in the early or late part of the year, there could be an overnight frost and the gas will cease to operate. Butane needs a pressure reducer set to 28 millibars. The reducer is usually painted blue. Propane, on the other hand will continue to evaporate down to about -40 degrees centigrade so is the best all round choice. It requires a pressure reducer set at 37 millibars. The reducer is usually painted red. The appliances will work on either gas. The advantage of propane is in the fact that you only have to worry about one type of gas and one regulator. The regulators are available from any good caravan accessory shop,
My own preference is to have full two cylinders of propane. The gas supply is taken from one cylinder until it runs out then I switch over to the full cylinder. The empty cylinder is then replaced with a full one on site if possible or when I get home. Using this system means that I never have two part full cylinders, either of which could run out before I can refill them.
One important point! Butane cylinder screw on connectors are right hand thread and propane connectors are left hand thread. We were in France and I watched a Brit motor homer beat the living daylights out of a propane cylinder with a lump hammer trying to disconnect the coupling thinking it was a right hand thread. In the end I reluctantly intervened, not because I am a smart alec know all, but because, if he had carried on, he was in dire danger of breaking the female part of the coupling thus rendering the cylinder completely useless. Unfortunately, his wife was not at all impressed with his lack of knowledge. I kept very low profile when anywhere near them.
Looking at you piccies of the restoration, it looks like you are making a good job of it. May your success continue. Please keep us updated on the progress.
I'm a bit surprized you can use any gas bottles? I've used propane with welding kit, and worked on Dining Car railway boilers, which run on propane. So if I go with Propane I have a bottle I can use. The gas valves were screwed to a block of wood, using two small straps.
All the pipework looks like a bodge job, with nothing fixed down, just a single run from valve to fridge etc.. If your sure I can use Propane, without checking the burners for compatabillity, I'll get some gas fittings and pipe clips and pumb it all in properly. I'm happy working with all forms of pipework, as I've done lods of it over the years, working on railway restoration projects.
The 'Dino' came with a 4.5kg (10lb) Butane (Blue Bottle) with a screw on regulator, we changed to 7Kg bottles with a 'Clip On' regulator.
Is there any Labels on the Fridge or Cooker that tells you the type (and Pressure) of the gas they are designed for.
It used to be 30mB for Butane and 37mB for propane......... now all modern caravans are now fitted with a Bulkhead Regulator working at 30mbar for Butane or Propane and the appliances are jetted to suit.
Elnagh Clipper 90.......... Real Names Mike & Hazel
Just been to my local plumbers shop and bought 3 new valves and elbows, to create a new manifold from. I'll be using standard 8mm copper pipe, which is slightly bigger than the original, but will adapt to the appliance fittings. I want to get the gas sorted early on, so I do not have to work inside cupboards. At the moment there is no work top to get in the way.