46 Long

Exmouth 08/09/2015

The Hopkinses are back from their jaunt around Alaska and Canada. The grass has been cut in straightish lines, the house cleaned, the van prepared and we are off. Not off off, just off. Before we reach back into Europe we have to swing by Portsmouth to have our fridge fixed at South Downs Motors. Credit where it is due and South Downs have been stars it getting some teething troubles fixed with our van. The most problematic being the fridge. The 12v heating element managed to melt and in doing so melted the adjacent 240v Element leaving us with only a gas powered fridge. They replaced every electrical part free of charge as they have never seen anything like it.

More than I can say for Clarion. Makers of our Sat Nav/entertainment system. Their SD card went corrupt. They expected me to pay £198 for a new one. Yep £198 for an SD card. On Amazon a fiver, from Clarion 198 smackeroos. Luckily I know a little about IT and managed to convince them over the period of two months it was a problem with their software. Upshot, we finally got a new unit. Other additions to the van over the summer were:

A new Avtex TV with integral DVD player. A success

A new Victron Mppt Conroller. A Success

A new Kitchen Aid kettle. A Expensive success

A rear number plate camera to enhance our established rear facing CCTV system. A success.

A new Weber Q1000 BBQ. A resounding success to replace the rubbish known as the cadac.

Remaining Lights replaced with LEDs. A Success. Southdowns only charged me £3 a bulb.

A 880 Watt Kenwood Toaster. A success. We can now have toast wherever we are. Hook-up or not.

A 3TB external drive from Dabs. Disaster. Do not use Dabs.

Here is a list of things you need: 

Item When to Buy Cost Check
Spare Bulb Kit
Emergency Warning Triangle
High Visibility Jacket
First Aid Kit
Right Hand Drive Headlight
GB Sticker
Bike Rack Signal Board
Spare driving glasses
Car Parking Disc with Arrival Time
Smoke Co2 Alarm
Speedo Dial
V5C  ‘log book’
Motorhome Insurance
Travel Insurance (for you in case of accident or illness)
Driving Licences (paper and photo part)
Photocopies of all documentation (kept somewhere safe; we also scanned ours and emailed them to ourselves)
Motorhome Instructions
Breakdown Cover
Mobile Phone Contracts (if going abroad for a long period these are handy to have for bill queries and renewing)
ACSI Discount Card (gives you discounted stay at campsites out of season across Europe, not to be confused with the ACSI campsite guides)
Daily Servicing
Hose Pipe
Hose Pipe Connectors Mostly use the two screw fit sizes.
Collapsible Water Carrier or Watering Can
Funnel (you’ll probably need one to get the water into your tank if you use a water carrier rather than a watering can.
Power Hook Up Cable (bubuild your own in proper waterproof cable. We have 2 lengths 15m and 25m
Hook Up Cable  Adapters .  French 2 pin, Europe 2 pin, 16Amp waterproof, UK 3 Pin.
Electric Halogen Heater
LPG Connection Adapters for France germany Spain etc
Grey/Black Waste Water Tank Fresh . Use about once a month. If you can access to grey tank then use dishwssher tabs
Fresh Water Tank Cleaner and Purifier. Just use now and again
Spirit Level to check van levelish. Don’t get anal about it
Small Levelling Chocks use together with rear air suspension or just use bricks.
Navigation and Finding Places to Sleep
Sat Nav.  we use a double din Clarion. Also plays all music, ipod, hands free phone, DVDs and rear camera feed.
Relevant SatNav Maps
Paper Maps
Off line Maps. Maps.Me  or Autoroute
Highlighter Pen
Camper Contact App
LED Strip under awning
Camping Chairs get from France if possible
Camping Table. We recommend lafuma
 Gas BBQ . Tried a Cadac. Absolute rubbish. Use a small Weber Q 1000. Brilliant
BBQ Tools
Picnic Rug
Inflatable Kayak. We have a Sevylor colorado
Sunglasses / Prescription Sunglasses
Insect Repellent
Citronella Candles
Fly Swat
Ratchet Socket Set
Multi Tool
WD-40 Lubricant
Assorted Cable Ties
Gaffer Tape . Gorilla Tape
Goriila Glue and small bottles of Super Glue
Spare Car Fuses
Precision Screwdriver Set
Spanner Set
Power Pack and Compressor
Traction mats
Spare Engine Oil
Disposable gloves
Melamine Plates and Bowls. John Lewis do lovely ones
Mugs big china
Wine Glasses must be glass
Plastic/Acrylic Glasses for kids and guests
Water/Wine Jug
Set of pans with removable handles. We use Tefal
Pan Protectors.
Gas Hob Kettle  don’t buy a cheap camping one
Low Wattage Kettle
Chopping Boards at least 2 and a bread one
Cheese Grater
Measuring Jug
Compact Weighing Scales
Scissors (at least a couple of pairs)
Quality Tin Opener
Vegetable Peeler
Bottle Opener/Cork Screw
Bread Knife and crumb catcher
Sharp Cutting Knife
Wooden Spoons
Serving Spoon
Wooden Skewers . Good for kebabs and clueing
Potato Masher
Plastic Storage Boxes.
Cleaning Sponges
Cleaning Wipes
Cleaning Scourers
Washing Up Liquid
Universal Sink Plug
Dustpan and Brush
Mini Vacuum Cleaner .Gtech is brilliant
Antibacterial Hand Wash for hands after toilet cassette emptying
Kitchen Roll
Tin Foil
Cling Film
Freezer Bags
Ice Cub Bags or Tray.
Microfibre Towel
Toilet Rolls . Don’t get motorhome ones
Air Freshener
Sunscreen / Aftersun
Bag For Life
Bedroom & Soft Furnishings
Duvet. We have a summer any winter that can either be used separately or clipped together.
thin Memory Foam Mattress Topper
Cotton Bed Sheets.
Spare Set of Bedding at least one. We think you need 3 bottom sheets
Sofa Throws
Hot Water Bottle
Stuff that don’t need ironing. Plus decent outfit
Laundry Sack/Bag
Washing Liquid/Powder
Fabric Softener
Clothes Line . We use a 15m piece of rope from B&Q.  Don’t get anything fancy
Drying Rack we use one that fits over our window. Think they are sold as radiator ones
Kindle / eReader
Playing Cards inculding Uno
Snorkelling Kit
Pens and Pencil
Paper Pads
Ipod and Ultimate Ears Bluettoth speaker
TV with DVD player
Laptop . Get a powerful one as pictures and video are very demanding
Laptop Mouse (we thought we wouldn’t need one so left ours at home, mistake had to buy one)
External Hard Drives. We are up to 8TB so far
Huawei Mifi.
USB Extension Cable
Multi-Country Internet and Phone SIM
Unlocked Mobile Phone
Films/TV Series
Cameras. We love our GoPro
Chargers for Everything
Spare Batteries
Electric Bicycle
Cycle Helmet (obligatory in some countries)
Bicycle Pump
Puncture Repair Kit
Christmas Lights
Essential Add ons
Non Slip Matting. The stuff with holes in
12v to 230v Power Inverter. Get at least a Killowatt. You can then run a toaster, a kettle and a remoska off grid
Solar Panel and Charge Controller. We have 280 Watt and a Victron Mppt Controller. Works great
AGM Leisure Batteries We have 2x110A.
Power Extension Cable. Make sure it can handle 3KW
Power Plug Adapters
Gaslow LPG Tanks
SOG Toilet
Door Security
Air Suspension
Dash Cam

Portsmouth 10/09/2015

After staying in the Brittany ferries car park overnight we were waken by a slight tap on the door to inform us we were holding everyone up. Dressed in a flash we showed our passports and officially started our next tour. After 46 long days of planning we once again left England and headed South.

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