I've just joined this site and hoping you can give me some answers...although I will also be browsing previous posts....
My wife and I plus three kids (12, 10 &5) are looking at buying a new folding camper, for and against reasons below plus questions.
Can anyone confirm if my assumptions are accurate or am I just being a miserable old codger....(I'm 47 you know......
FOR - Reasons for buying...
Cheaper than a caravan Citroen grand Picasso 1.6 diesel wont lug a big caravan After seeing them at the local dealer, they actually look rather nice and roomy - with double beds permenently set up, plus additonal lean to. Towing them is easier
AGAINST Smaller than a caravan? Possible leaks when really bad wet and windy weather? Have to stop using earlier than a caravan due to cold weather Cannot load up with too many extra bits like chairs, water roller etc.
Questions What about packing away when wet - will you get mildew etc. Will those little posts support us when we are in bed?
I've never had a folding camper, but I knew someone who has.
They got it for the 'For Reasons' you point out, they must have had it about 4 or 5 years now and seem perfectly happy with it.
Not sure your against reasons are correct. I would be very surprised if you got any leaks, even in stormy conditions. And if you go to a club site with a 16A EHU you can use a 2K blower heater to keep any cold away. Not sure abut the packing away when damp, hopefully someone else can help.
Elnagh Clipper 90.......... Real Names Mike & Hazel
We used to have a FC (Conway Cruiser) and I really enjoyed it. They are effectively tents on a caravan chassis and the awning was huge. If you are buying new then you will get years out of it, as for packing away wet then you do need to make sure you open it up to dry out before putting it into long term storage - even if it's raining - otherwise you will get milldew etc. Have you a make in mind?
Mike Swift Challenger 490se (2007) Land Rover Discovery TD5
Hello steve, we sold our pennine pathfinder earlier this year because after 5 years we changed to a caravan. To answer some of your questions here go`s, We could keep ours on our drive ( cant the caravan its to big) Would def recoommend a winter cover for them though. Lovely having the two double beds perm set up. We used to tow ours with a ford escort ( a lot easier) Againsts. Although we used ours at easter it did get cold in the evenings. Same in late september. As for loading we used to get as much in ours as we do in our caravan, never had any problems. Never had any leaks and there is a load of room in the pathfinder they have hot water tank, toilet, sink, fridge loung area, oven etc. The legs are more than strong enough ( for us anyway) When we sold ours we noticed mildew on some of the canvas and mike is spot on when he said you must open it up to dry out even if its raining because that is where we made the mistake. Think it rained for quite a few days after a break and we was waiting for the sun to shine, sadly it was to late. Lastly for a weekend away they are hard work setting up as it takes a few hours to completely get them up, we didnt mind at the start but after a few years you tend to get a bit fed up with it. They are good though and we had some lovely holidays with it. I would say get a second hand one and then if in a few years time if you fancy selling it then you wont lose so much money. Good luck and have fun. PS. our kids where a similar age to yours ( only 2 kids though) and when we used to go for a week or more they used to sleep in there own tents in the awning which was great as me and my wife would have a double bed each which no caravan could give you!
I had a Raclet trailer tent which me and the wife (and rabbit) enjoyed, we then changed it for a Colman Dakota wind up roof job which the Daughter, son-in-law and there son now use, as we have gone to a Freedom Microlite Sport caravan (all of the above are/have been towed by my MK3 Polo) so they are easy to tow. After many happy years with a trailer tent I went over to a caravan because I got fed up with having to dry it out before putting it away in this country. Other than that I found them warm, dry and roomy.
We have had our Pennine Pathfinder for the past 7 years now. We find it so much easier than a caravan to tow, set up, and for living in. no making beds up from benches. We arrive on site and within 30 minutes we are sitting down witha cuppa. if we use the main awning - 21ft X 9ft - that takes another 30 minutes to put up. We have never had any issues with the bed supports,[ and we are not small] Reasons for ;- Ease of towing, small enough to manouver. Easy set up, everyone has their own routine. Lots of room in the main cabin if not using awning. No leaks or draughts. Every thing included, cooker sink, fridge, heating, lightinng Pack everything inside, and make up beds before going away
Reasons against ;- You do have to get them opened up within a few days. only for a couple of hours. if you pack away wet, The manufacturers keep making new designs with new fabrics, now rot proof acrilic !
Never had a folder but I can see if you did most of your touring in the summer, they would be a very cost effective way of seeing the country and can be kept in the garage at home without the need to use a storage site which is expensive. They look really spacious and bright as well. The main reason we don't have one is that we tour year round and I'm pretty nesh which would make for a very cold Christmas.
Denise and Him (that's Tim, or Mothy, LOL) Lili the Swift Corniche 12/2 + Honda CRV