Best camper trailer

Submitted: Monday, Nov 12, 2001 at 01:00
ThreadID: 543 Views:18337 Replies:9 FollowUps:1
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Here's one that should stimulate a few tongues! It is a very general question to get peoples opinion to help me in making my ultimate decision on which camper trailer to purchase. Hopefully this will help some others in thier decision as well.
In your humble opinion and experience, which camper trailer do you think is the best for touring the outback, and why.
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Reply By: SCOTT - Monday, Nov 12, 2001 at 01:00

Monday, Nov 12, 2001 at 01:00
Andrew very topical question. I went down this road about 2 yrs ago and my personal choice for our situation was as follows.
We chose a soft floor due to more internal space for a family of 4, and have optioned with 240v full kitchen facility attached to swing out tail gate (includes sink storage 2 burner / griller stainless steel stove) water tank under with steel protector. Bed base on struts to allow easy access into camper either erected or folded away, 2 large internal access under mattress. Full venterlation with windows on three sides of bed with both external and internal storm flaps also window walls with external flaps that can be used as awning. Full zip on 8ft annex that can be fully enclosed if required. The extra 2ft over standard annex of 6ft is very handy.
The trailer is 7 x 4 with 500mm sides sitting on 100mm gal/steel chasis running LT tyres matched to vehicle with treg coupling and alco heavy duty suspension.
We have done some 15000km now with some fairly heavy duty 4x4 including some very deep corrogations and never had any troubles. the only improvements that i intend is electric bakes and a set of dampers as it can get a bit of bounce but strangely mainly on the outback highways at 100-110 km/h.
Depends where u are but having just moved to melb from bris the range and choice is very limited down here as opposed to qld. It also depends on your budget the above set up will set u back about $13-$15k
Hope this is of help
cheers
AnswerID: 1400

Reply By: Andrew - Monday, Nov 12, 2001 at 01:00

Monday, Nov 12, 2001 at 01:00
Which is the best ? Start from choosing type of the trailer: Soft floor,Hard floor or Pop up.
All of them have their good and bad points. Soft floors box type trailers seem like cheap option but when you add
all the extras you pay close to $15K. For that price you may consider looking at Hard Floor Fliper type
which will keep you of the ground. Luck of storage space could be a problem with this one.
Both of those type of trailers would be OK if you do fair bit of 4Wdriving. If you spend a lot of time on
highways with some easy off road work Pop up like Jayco Outback will do very well.
Its really personal choice but if you know type of trailer you want you more then half way there.

AnswerID: 1401

Reply By: Don - Monday, Nov 12, 2001 at 01:00

Monday, Nov 12, 2001 at 01:00
We bought a Cavalier deluxe off road camper , plus annex ($6700) back in 1996 . Continue to be very satisfied with it - have done 30K(including Mitchell Falls) , is easy to tow & comfortable to sleep in . Have been in heavy rain & stayed dry , ventilation is good & set up & take down times are low (10 mins + two cans to set up). 13.5 oz canvas on top is amongst heaviest fitted to any . Have no problem recommending them .
AnswerID: 1409

Reply By: Grant - Tuesday, Nov 13, 2001 at 01:00

Tuesday, Nov 13, 2001 at 01:00
G'day Andrew, don't know how large your timeframe is before you intend to buy but try hiring some over a few weekends especially if you are having trouble choosing between 2 or 3 brands/models. It is a fairly significant purchase, so why not get it right. We hired one for our holiday and now know what we want and don't want and what changes or mods we would make. Also, while we were away we checked out other campers and their modifications. I'm going to build my own coz I reckon I can do it heaps cheaper and do it the way we want it. We have never seen one just the way we want it. We had the "Eliminator" suspension (independent trailing arm) on the one we hired and it was amazing. It was overloaded, ran it over a weighbridge, and it just sat there and big bumps went unnoticed. I was very impressed, and I don't impress easily. Good luck.
AnswerID: 1417

Reply By: Allan - Tuesday, Nov 13, 2001 at 01:00

Tuesday, Nov 13, 2001 at 01:00
Hi Andrew -Let me convey my thoughts. No matter what you buy you will want to make changes as there are little things that will annoy you. For example, a flash looking gas cooker will shake to bits on the Gibb River road and you can never find the right place to store things. I doubt any manufacturer can cater for everyones needs and tastes. My recommendation is to hire one or two first, then buy secondhand. Most people buy one for a big trip then sell when they get home. Providing the canvas is in good order there is not much that can go wrong. It probably has been sandblasted from stones so you can tell where the stone guards are inadequate and after a couple of short trips you can work out what modifications you may want to make. I paid $3200 for a 2 year old conventional 4WD camper trailer (6’x4’x500mm deep, fold out the side model with soft floor) in good condition. The cooker only lasted 3000km before the screws shook loose and had to be rebuilt by welding and pop rivets. Special boxes had to be made up to store the other equipment such as battery, generator, spare stub axle & hub, outboard, poles, fishing gear, BBQ, shower etc. After setting up the way you want it the paint can be touched up (or colour coordinated). Remember, unless you are retired and have plenty of time to go travelling, 90% of the time the camper will stay in the driveway so why spend too much. Stick to a strong frame trailer with heavy duty springs and axles. Good ventilation (with mossie netting) and extra dust sealing is important for us. Best of luck, Allan
AnswerID: 1423

Follow Up By: Andrew - Wednesday, Nov 14, 2001 at 01:00

Wednesday, Nov 14, 2001 at 01:00
Thanks Allan, and all who have replied. Thats a good point about the gas cooker. I will bear it in mind as all the other tips in this thread.
I dont think I will have an opportunity to do the hiring bit, as I want to be able to set up the vehicle and camper, and then head out for a couple of years, stopping for a few months in different cities between trips. I guess like most of you, I will learn as I go, but I firmly believe in talking to those who have already been there and have the knowledge.
Hopefully I will be able to pass along things I learn to others later on just you are passing on what you have learnt now.
If the people we meet on our travels are as friendly and helpful as the ppl in this forum, it will be a great time.
I am looking forward to returning home to Australia!
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FollowupID: 436

Reply By: Jeremy - Wednesday, Nov 14, 2001 at 01:00

Wednesday, Nov 14, 2001 at 01:00
WE are a agent for BCNU Camper trailers, we hire a fleet of 5 trailers and they have covered every corner of thr country ! and you can imagine how they get treated in hire situation, they all lep it up !. Check out there Web Site !
AnswerID: 1434

Reply By: Jeremy - Wednesday, Nov 14, 2001 at 01:00

Wednesday, Nov 14, 2001 at 01:00
WE are a agent for BCNU Camper trailers, we hire a fleet of 5 trailers and they have covered every corner of thr country ! and you can imagine how they get treated in hire situation, they all lep it up !. Check out there Web Site !
AnswerID: 1435

Reply By: Simon Nickson - Sunday, Nov 18, 2001 at 01:00

Sunday, Nov 18, 2001 at 01:00
In short I think it is a case of you get what you pay for. I never thought that I would pay over $18 000 for a camper trailer, but I couldn't be happier. I have a Camp/o/Matic hard floor which flips off the back. I have taken it over some rough tracks and it just laps it up. I have two kids and find there is enough room. (No matter how much storage space you have you will always fill it.)The off the side soft floor probably gives more room but more effort and more time is needed to set up and pack up.
The Camp/O/Matics are very very similar to Kimberley. I think Kimberley Campers may have copied them as Camp/O/Matic have been building trailers for a long time.
I have had no problems with my gas stove so I guess it depends on how well the build and install them into the trailer.

Good luck
AnswerID: 1446

Reply By: Brian Noyes - Tuesday, Nov 20, 2001 at 01:00

Tuesday, Nov 20, 2001 at 01:00
I have a Camp-o-Matic Converter I bought second hand (one year old) about two and a half years ago. I tow it with a VS Commodore Station Wagon and have pulled it 30,000km so far with not a single problem. I do admit we have made a few modifications such as more storage boxes, a custom made kitchen, fully enclosed annex to suit our needs and a few other minor changes. Believe you me you don't need a four wheel drive to see a lot of this great country. I have just come back from 5 weeks in WA and travelled 13,000kms and it never missed a beat. Last year I took it up the Oodnadatta Track and this year we travelled from Mt. Magnet via Sandstone to Leinster in WA and that covered about 400km of dirt road and once again went perfect. It is easy to put up and pull down and pack away. I agree with one other comment but mine takes about 30 minutes and two stubbies of homebrew. It is a hard top and in wet weather it causes no problems and I can tell you it has been in some very wet weather in South/West WA. I would certainly recommend the Camp-o Matic range of trailers but they are hard to find at a reasonable price second hand. Anyway whichever way you go enjoy this great country of ours as it is a bloody fantastic place and full of fantastic people that are on the road.
AnswerID: 1460

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