New to Caravanning

Submitted: Monday, Sep 09, 2013 at 23:15
ThreadID: 128948 Views:7541 Replies:8 FollowUps:1
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Hi Guys
Well i have been converted from the sea yacht (now sold) to the land yacht (about to committ)
I am researching off roaders- really my main use will be outback, corrugated roads etc, not serious off road but i want it to be self substaining
I am currently researching off road vans and are considering BT, Sunlander, Spinifex
i am wondering particular features i should be looking for, best size suited for a landcruiser 200 series (3500kg towing capacity) and why you chose BT and if you have had any probs
really appreciate your advice here
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Reply By: The Hob - Tuesday, Sep 10, 2013 at 04:00

Tuesday, Sep 10, 2013 at 04:00

We were also new to caravans. We went for quality of workmanship and wanted something strong to take on dirt roads rather than some massive cross country epic.
Having seen some other vans and their construction we went to a factory tour at Bushtracker and we were sold.

Have been around the lap plus other trips up and down the eastern seaboard. Trips included the Gibb River Road, Duncan Highway etc and were are very happy with the BT. We used to get around in a camper trailer and still do for the super serious bush bash but the shower and toilet on board suits our ageing lifestyle.

I cannot urge enough to contact the BT factory and make an appointment for a factory tour.

Ours is 2008 vintage with island bed 4 batteries 4 tanks and 4 panels

AnswerID: 586380

Reply By: Boystoy - Tuesday, Sep 10, 2013 at 07:25

Tuesday, Sep 10, 2013 at 07:25
Hi Russel,

Our experience with our 2004 BT, which has logged over 140,000km and has travelled almost all caravan-capable desert roads in Australia.
We can report that nothing built by Bushtracker has broken!
You do however need to carefully select your appliances. They generally are nowhere near the standard of Bushtracker when you get off the black stuff. We are on our second refrigerator, our second washing machine, our third microwave, and our third TV.
Our recommendation is Go Bushtracker!

A Bushtracker (or BT) is a "Boys Toy"

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AnswerID: 586381

Reply By: Bushwhackers - Tuesday, Sep 10, 2013 at 17:52

Tuesday, Sep 10, 2013 at 17:52
Hi Russell,

We are new to caravanning also and have just picked up our 20ft BT so have not done too many kms as yet, being towed by a Troopcarrier.

We chose Bushtracker because of their willingness to supply any information asked of them, their build quality (honestly, go and crawl over the competitors vans and you will see), the endless amount of information on the Bushtracker forum, back up support and never ending patience when dealing with those that struggle with various issues owning a van.

We looked closely at all options and as this is our 'house' we were very cautious when it came to the final purchase. We believe we have made the correct decision.

We also intend to use our van in the way you describe you want to and chose 20 ft because it is relatively easy to manoeuvre but provides ample living space for both of us but have a look at the Bushtracker forum as many go to 21 ft with your tow vehicle.

Features? All depends on what you're using it for I suppose. As this is our home it is quite heavily optioned up. If I was using it for holidays only I would have gone without much of what is in it. Wife loves the full rear ensuite and as I shower and look across from Inskip Point to Fraser Island I reckon it's great.

I would recommend starting with the Bushtracker forum (I spent 9 months on there during research and after order) and ask everything you want. There are good folk who regularly contribute, including Bushtracker, who will help you out no end.

Good luck with it all
AnswerID: 586382

Follow Up By: Bushwhackers - Tuesday, Sep 10, 2013 at 17:56

Tuesday, Sep 10, 2013 at 17:56
We have 4 panels. 4 tanks and lithium battery. I'm electrically challenged but LOVE that battery!
FollowupID: 855352

Reply By: Grumblebum & Dragon - Saturday, Sep 14, 2013 at 05:59

Saturday, Sep 14, 2013 at 05:59

Do yourself a favor and do the factory tour. We were 'newbies' many moons ago, knew where we wanted to travel and had to find the right rig. !8 months of solid research and we placed an order for a 19' Bushtracker. Now been on the road for +8 years and live in the van full time and love it.

We have replaced a fridge control unit - nothing to do with Bushtracker and two shower hoses - ditto. Got badly let down when one of the cupboard hinges they use failed and had to be replaced.....Bugger!! Otherwise bloody magic.

I had a really good look at an opposition van recently that likes to compare to Bushtracker. There is no comparision and the owner agreed.


John and Jean

AnswerID: 586383

Reply By: Motherhen & Rooster - Saturday, Sep 14, 2013 at 07:00

Saturday, Sep 14, 2013 at 07:00
Hi Russell

A few years ago when we were researching, we saw our first Bushtracker in a National Park. We didn't see inside, but just looking underneath was enough that my husband would consider nothing else. We put our money into second hand - better to buy top quality second hand, than something else new for the same price.

"my main use will be outback, corrugated roads etc, not serious off road"

That says it all - the relentless corrugations of our outback roads are what does the damage. Get the time tested best.


Red desert dreaming

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AnswerID: 586384

Reply By: braggy - Saturday, Sep 14, 2013 at 21:15

Saturday, Sep 14, 2013 at 21:15
Hi Russell

You don't mention size or wishlist items, a 200 series will tow most vans.

We went for the small ,14'x7', poptop ,single axle.

We go some what more off road, than just gravel roads, and coming from a Kimberley Karavan (which will go along way offroad), did not want a large dual axle van ,they just won't go where I want to.

We don't live in it,so don't need all the home type luxuries but do travel 5 months a year.,

The quality and eye for detail of the guys that work there is outstanding.
And made our choice of change an easy one.

If however you are looking at a larger more upmarket number, maybe have a look at the new Kimberley Kruiser. They are leading the way in all aspects of self sufficiency, even recycle/treat the shower water to the washing machine

Just my thoughts, good luck with the search

Cheers Ken

AnswerID: 586385

Reply By: surfy53 - Sunday, Sep 15, 2013 at 17:38

Sunday, Sep 15, 2013 at 17:38
Ditto, ditto, ditto.
You must do the factory tour of the manufacturers you have selected and compare to BT. Some may not have a factory tour............are they trying to hide something.
My Mrs' wasn't keen on spending that much money, but after the tour she was convinced that BT was the best.
AnswerID: 586386

Reply By: Rustynails59 - Monday, Sep 16, 2013 at 06:05

Monday, Sep 16, 2013 at 06:05
Thanks guys for your responses
Yes I will organize a Bt tour
AnswerID: 586387

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