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Suggestions and information please.

Postby kevinwalters » Fri Feb 21, 2014 3:23 am

We will be shipping our 2012 Tiffin Allegro Breeze 32” from the USA to the UK in 2014. We intend to use the Motorhome more in Europe than the UK but will comply with the IVA M1 inspection in order to obtain a UK registration.

We would appreciate any comments and/or information relating to the following as we are still in the USA and have the option to purchase and modify whilst we are here paying $ for £.

To convert to 240v or run with a 110v system and step up/down transformer
We intend to tow (wheels down) a Fiat 500 - we have a blueox tow bar
We do not have HGV licences yet, any suggestions
We have installed a Surge Protector from Progressive Industries (EMS-HW50C) will this still work ?
Consideration for addition of solar panels
Insurance Companies suggestions
Any fittings or accessories that are easier to obtain in the US than Europe
European camping recommendations as we have no experience

Appreciate any assistance

Regards

K&N
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Re: Suggestions and information please.

Postby Mrtibbs » Fri Feb 21, 2014 11:59 am

Hi Kevin
Just a few initial thoughts.....
You will be best advised to have the coach converted to 230 Volts AC, but personally I would get it done here in the UK, that way you should be ensured that it is a safe installation that meets the current electrical installation rules. Don't be tempted to run one of those "site" yellow transformers, as they are not really designed to run 24/7 in my opinion.
Towing "wheels down" on an A Frame may still be legal in the UK :) but the foreigners seem to have lots of difficulties with that method. We had reports of people being told to uncouple their cars and drive them separately whilst they were abroad. I used to tow on an A Frame with no problems, but that was UK only and I thought it was easy and fixed the issues that I needed to fix, however I guess that made it a target for our overworked bureaucrats and they seem to have taken a dislike to this idea. If I were advising you (which I guess I am :)) then I would advise towing the car on a trailer. I know it seems daft, but that is the way in over regulated Europe nowadays ;) I am sure that this will spark a mass debate :)
Solar panels - Yes definitely, get the biggest that you can afford and fit them over there....
HGV, I would certainly advise getting your license increased to Class 1 so there is no discussion that you are entitled to drive a heavy vehicle. You will hear people try to convince you that you can drive a 500 tonne vehicle on a C1+E license because they claim that it is not an HGV as it doesn't carry "Goods", however my C1+E simply says " Any vehicle up to 7500Kgs (7.5 Tonnes), it doesn't really care about goods, people or spuds, it is simply about the weight.... Don't risk it. Insurance policies now usually say that you are insured to drive the declared vehicle as long as you are entitled to drive it and have the correct license, that should ring warning bells. What if you have an accident? where are you then with all the carnage lying around you? Doesn't bear thinking about.
Don't know about the surge protector so cannot comment...
There are several insurance companies over here, it is worth shopping around to get quotes via the www.
That's all I can think of at the moment, good luck and I hope that others can offer you some more advice soon :)

Keith
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"Life is a gift, Freedom is a responsibility."
Amateurs .. Built the ark. Professionals .. Built the Titanic"
“The good thing about science is that it's true whether or not you believe in it.”
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Re: Suggestions and information please.

Postby david stirling » Sat Feb 22, 2014 10:05 am

My web site gives details of our 2013 tour of Western Europe and Morocco with routes and campsites used that are RV friendly, we have a Monaco Windsor. We start our 2014 tour to Eastern Europe and Turkey at the end of March and will be giving the same information. The site is http://www.stirlingtravels.co.uk

As far as conversions goes I would agree with Mr Tibbs and have it done in the UK. I do not know where you will be based but if you are in the South West of the UK try Empire RV and I give details of an excellent RV trainer, Michelle. Details on both of these can be found on the RV page of the web site. I hope this helps a bit. David.
Our 2013 tour to Western Europe and Morocco can be found at www.stirlingtravels.co.uk with details of routes used, tolls paid and American RV friendly campsites. We are currently planning the 2014 tour to Eastern Europe and Turkey.
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Re: Suggestions and information please.

Postby ruffingitsmoothly » Sun Feb 23, 2014 12:07 pm

kevinwalters wrote:We will be shipping our 2012 Tiffin Allegro Breeze 32” from the USA to the UK in 2014. We intend to use the Motorhome more in Europe than the UK but will comply with the IVA M1 inspection in order to obtain a UK registration.

We would appreciate any comments and/or information relating to the following as we are still in the USA and have the option to purchase and modify whilst we are here paying $ for £.

To convert to 240v or run with a 110v system and step up/down transformer
We intend to tow (wheels down) a Fiat 500 - we have a blueox tow bar
We do not have HGV licences yet, any suggestions
We have installed a Surge Protector from Progressive Industries (EMS-HW50C) will this still work ?
Consideration for addition of solar panels
Insurance Companies suggestions
Any fittings or accessories that are easier to obtain in the US than Europe
European camping recommendations as we have no experience

Appreciate any assistance

Regards

K&N


Hi

If I were to import another RV (we imported our Monaco Windsor in 2007) I would seriously consider leaving the 110 volt set up, as most electrical items TV's chargers etc will run on 110volts also 110volt kettles, toasters etc are all readily available to buy.

Of course you would still need a decent drop down 240/110 transformer for when on hook up.

One of the main problems with a 'yellow' transformer is unlike normal transformers it does not work backwards as it drops the voltage from 240 to -55 and +55volts,for site safety, so it must be disconnected from the 110volt system when you start the generator or you will, at the very least trip a breaker or possibly blow the generator.


Regards Pat
Its better to remain silent and be thought a fool than to speak out and remove all doubt.
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Re: Suggestions and information please.

Postby Damon3272 » Sun Feb 23, 2014 3:46 pm

Yes I agree with Pat.
When I convert my RVs I leave all the 110volt in the rv,and use a good 240 to 110 transformer with soft start clutch then I can use 110 appliances on site and through the genny.
I have a 240 volt ring main to power the UK appliances
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Re: Suggestions and information please.

Postby Panama Jack » Mon Mar 03, 2014 9:08 pm

We brought our [small] R-Vision Trail-Lite over from Baltimore to Liverpool last September and home to France in November.
To answer your e mail point by point.....see below.[b][b][i]
[/b]
[/i][/b]
We will be shipping our 2012 Tiffin Allegro Breeze 32” from the USA to the UK in 2014. We intend to use the Motorhome more in Europe than the UK but will comply with the IVA M1 inspection in order to obtain a UK registration.

[i]Understood no comment....[/i]

We would appreciate any comments and/or information relating to the following as we are still in the USA and have the option to purchase and modify whilst we are here paying $ for £.
Understood....no comment.

To convert to 240v or run with a 110v system and step up/down transformer
We've kept our 120 v ac system without a problem and use a 4000 American Nippon Transformer unit, though have yet to try it out to run the AC :-).
In my opinion there's no need to change it out unless you want to throw away your generator, AC Unit, Micro Wave, Refrigerator and breaker system and if you do, why not wait until you have to?

We intend to tow (wheels down) a Fiat 500 - we have a blueox tow bar
Do check out the forum for towing.....we've not addressed it yet, it seems to be OK in France and the only static seems to be in Spain....though it might be more widespread than that. If you have the tow bar...do bring it though the conversion for European Electrics will require a different plug....your converter will have one I'm sure.

We do not have HGV licences yet, any suggestions
If your rig is heavier than 7,500 kg you'll need the HGV licence/s.[b]

We have installed a Surge Protector from Progressive Industries (EMS-HW50C) will this still work ?
[b]
I believe as long as you stay with 120 v ac your Surge Protector is OK....but why not check with them or the RV Forum?
[/i][/b]
Consideration for addition of solar panels.
Yes get them. Do get in touch with Larry Crutcher in Yuma [starlightsolar] or HandyBobSolar [bobanene@gmail.com] in Montana for your requirements.

Insurance Companies suggestions
The only company who would take us on in the UK on USA plates to get from Liverpool docks to the conversion company [Signature Motorhomes] was Adrian Flux and a good price too, though we'll be changing as ex UK days are restricted to 180.

Any fittings or accessories that are easier to obtain in the US than Europe
Bring every thing you can and then some more....we brought cordless drills and a saw with spare drills batteries and blades, AC Unit, TPMS, upgraded our rear view camera system, spare 120 v ac micro wave [$50 :-)], decided against a macerator system but a small hose dump unit instead, LED lights, extra LED TV and it works over here with a TNT box [TNT being French], upgraded our toilet from plastic to china bow, shower curtain, had both our main and slide awning upgraded, windscreen and window sunscreens, patio room [or safari room if you prefer], check out your outside furniture; chairs, table & BBQ, oil and fuel filters for the genny and engine, [don't bring lube oil as the additives are reportedly different in Europe from the USA], will you need snow chains[?] wheel sizes are different, all that in addition to upgrading from 2 to 4 solar panels, ditching our mixed wet batteries for 480 AH AGM's with controler, monitor and fast 120 v ac charger.
Do ensure your tyres are good, do ensure your windscreens are good....or else £££££££.


European camping recommendations as we have no experience
Leave that detail until you're over here there's lots of info and our club has forum sub folders a plenty......after all...you've not said where in Europe you want to go :-))
Happy travels....PJ.
sorry about the formatting ....
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