Archive | December, 2017

Virtual reality camping

6 Dec

On our travels we have found many model caravans and cars that jog my memories. Some have been picked up for just a few pounds. Others have cost a little more, but they come from the sparce end of supply. Most of the models that I collect are scaled at 1;43 but I have a few which are bigger. This Predom N126 is from Poland and is as close as you can buy to a model Freedom Microlite. Another caravan which we once owned but now have as a virtual reality reminder is the Sprite Musketeer from Tekno. These can be very expensive in good condition. I matched it with a model of our old Audi Coupe GT which took us all as a young family all over France in the mid 1980s.

I have even bought a model of my brother’s TAB, which I know he has fond memories of. We last camped alongside it at Crich in Derbyshire.

Sometimes you can buy a desired model caravan ,cheaper,  as part of a “car” and caravan combo. We got a little tear drop caravan this way. The TAB had already been removed from it’s tow vehicle and was marked up at a slight premium. Motorhomes are somewhat harder to come by. I could not resist this Fiat Ducato based Pilote recently. It’s still en-route from the seller in Italy.

Here it is at the forefront of other models in a series. I think that may have been sold in mainland Europe as part of a magazine type collection, bought monthly. The model has a bike on the back, reminiscent of hundreds of real motorhomes seen each year at the Tour de France. It also reminds me of our old Talbot Excalibur.

Being a complete anorak with unhealthy child like tendencies remaining in big doses, I think that this Pilote, rare in the UK., will look just fine as part of a model Tour de France diorama. I am not able to show a photo of it right now, but will pop one onto the Blog once it’s completed.

Decent models of the NV200., Combi and /or Evalia are difficult to find in the UK. There is a white van version available now and again, sourced in Japan. Chinese versions have far too heavy paintwork which spoils the scale and detail. Would like to re-vamp one into a replica of the Kampa. It’s got to be done at some stage. must dig out all my modelling tools. Sad or fun ? You decide. LOL

Here are one example of a White Evalia and one NV200 van in white.

nissan evalia wht

nissan nv200 fr wht

It would probably be simpler to “convert” the van into a replica Kampa but maybe the Evalia is a better model? Mmmmmmmm……………..

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Time for contemplation

5 Dec

It’s that time of year, when you find time to look back over the last year and look forward to the fresh clean sheet of next year’s plans.

2017 was disrupted (in a very pleasant way !) by a 3 week trip to the USA in May. This took a large chunk out of our leisure budget but we still managed some time away in Wales. We visited lots of National Trust and English Heritage properties along with our inevitable Antiques centre days out. The kampa has performed very well despite a large bill to replace a sheared air inlet pipe and a mass air flow sensor (which did not really need replacement). Otherwise, totally reliable and building a huge sense of “trust” in the entire package.

It has been a year of “day vanning” with a few overnight stopovers but crammed with Castles, interesting Welsh and English towns and repeated family visits to London. Next year looks ambitious before we even start !

Having thoroughly enjoyed two trips to Scotland ,previously, including Loch Goyle and Skye , the NC500 is again on the cards. The seaside is also calling with Cornwall and Anglesey high on the wish list. We have not visited our beloved France for far too long and a trip to Lac de Maine , Angers has to be a must. So we have much to budget for and I enjoy the planning so much. Before Christmas, I shall get the timing and auxilliary belts changed in preparation. The rust proofing will have to wait! Now, where’s my pen and planning pad?