Submitted: Monday, Sep 07, 2015 at 16:49
ThreadID: 130214 Views:5206 Replies:4 FollowUps:3
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This last trip - some VERY corrugated tracks - we have found our original Swift 500 stove (4 top burner, with grill & separate oven) has not stood the test. Hubby has managed many repairs but we are now at the stage of seriously thinking of having to replace it. The grill won't stay alight after having previously lit up. We have already once replaced one of the lines & replaced the control valve & pipe. The pipe to the oven broke off behind the control valve & we nearly had a catastrophic fire. The lid over the burners broke off. The pop rivets which hold the burners to the base keep breaking. Our stove is 3 1/2 years old. Has anyone any experience with a stove which may stand the test of the sort of roads we choose. We did have a microwave but it's base collapsed & so now I just have a cupboard but I certainly need a stove & use my oven as well. Thanks, Waly
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Reply By: Grumblebum & Dragon - Sunday, Sep 13, 2015 at 08:33

Sunday, Sep 13, 2015 at 08:33
We have just replaced our Swift stove after 10 years of continuous use. Yes the back right burner would not stay alight if the oven was warm and the knobs were coming loose....... and it needed cleaning!

Bushtracker usually test many components before adding them to the standard list and Swift have been the standard for many years.

Maybe you are travelling a bit too hard/heavy/fast or with harder tyres than needed on really bad corrugations - but I do not know - however that would be my first consideration. It may also be possible that you have a fault in the suspension system like a broken leaf or some other problem.

I also had a Microwave collapse in the first three months of our full time travel ten years ago - it was a cheap model that I supplied and the factory fitted. The second one did not fare any better. I then had fitted a Sharp model from the factory about seven years ago and no problems since. I lie! it did start 'groaning' recently but a very thorough clean of the small wheels and track under the turntable fixed that.

We run tyre pressures of 22 psi cold in really bad corrugations and only fill one water tank unless we are heading out to camp in dry country for an extended camp. This helps keep the weight down as we are towing with a 100 series.


John and Jean

AnswerID: 590295

Reply By: Wally - Tuesday, Sep 15, 2015 at 12:51

Tuesday, Sep 15, 2015 at 12:51
Thanks John & Jean for your reply. Yes I have continued to research stoves which might be sturdier but have had no luck. We admit that Swift have been excellent with their follow up service & have helped us out on a few occasions with previous faults. We may just have to pull our old stove out & see if there are ways to reinforce the weak spots. And yes we know that Bushtracker do test what goes into their vans but of course years of continual rough roads do wreak havoc.
And thanks for your suggestions re tyre pressures and speed. We do meet many drivers who are out in somewhat remote areas who are completely ignorant of the importance of their tyre pressures & also the impact of speed. Thankfully we are experienced four wheel drivers who belong to a supportive club (Wangaratta 4 Wheel Drive Club) & have travelled the High Country of Vic, the Simpson Desert, the Canning Stock Route etc ( of course not with the van). And we are oldies ( in age only of course) who don't have to be in a hurry & travel according to the conditions.
Yes we do travel "heavy" sometimes because we DO go very remote & love desert travel with limited water resources. We realise of course that given the travel we have to put up with some problems but were hoping some other "rough it" Bushtracker owners may have had a solution. This is particularly since this last trip our stove situation became very dangerous when the gas pipe to the oven had broken & the gas was leaking into the back cavity & not the oven. Consequently when I lit the oven we had an explosion & flames everywhere. Thank goodness no major harm done & Allan was able to fix the pipe (under instruction).
Another thank you re the microwave solution but again because when the base from our last microwave just "fell off" I feel safer not using one. It was a microwave that Bushtracker supplied ( van is 3 1/2yrs old). It was a lovely luxury when it worked but we can easily survive without one.
Again thanks for your response. As you can see I have had no others. Enjoy your travels, we certainly do.
AnswerID: 590383

Reply By: Wally - Tuesday, Sep 15, 2015 at 12:59

Tuesday, Sep 15, 2015 at 12:59
John & Jean, forgot to mention that before this last trip we had a full service by Bushtracker( including suspension). So that aspect should be covered too.
Thanks again, Walandnet.
AnswerID: 590384

Follow Up By: braggy - Tuesday, Sep 15, 2015 at 16:43

Tuesday, Sep 15, 2015 at 16:43
Hi Wally

Busted gas pipe is not good, glad it wasn't worse.

I spoken to Swift about our stove, and they sent me out a gas detector alarm, free of charge in the interest of safety, (now that is good service). Swift are pushing to have detectors mandatory, got to be a good idea in an off road van.

We had a diesel cooktop in our previous Karavan, you get use to slow heat up time, never had any problems with it and it went on alot more rugged tracks than a big van would, at least the chance of a gas explosion is removed.

Cheers Ken.
FollowupID: 858406

Reply By: Wally - Wednesday, Sep 16, 2015 at 14:02

Wednesday, Sep 16, 2015 at 14:02
Thanks Ken for your suggestion. After our scare we will follow that one up. Wally
AnswerID: 590414

Follow Up By: Grumpy - Wednesday, Sep 16, 2015 at 15:36

Wednesday, Sep 16, 2015 at 15:36
Hi Wally,

Just arrived in Derby (and phone/internet coverage) after a couple of months doing the alternate Savannah Way and Gibb River Road.

We too had our microwave collapse and it now lies in a bin near Mataranka. Base fractured in a number of places and door hinges were gone. We travel at conservative speeds with deflated tyres as well.

Also had problem with 500 series stove, gas leak around the lid shut off valve. Swift forwarded replacement valve next day and their agent in Darwin replaced in 10 mins. Swift also forwarded a clip for securing the stove top. Peter at BT had advised us on handover in Nov last year to secure stove top with bungee cord which we did from day one.

After reading the safety alert on the BT forum and researching other forums some time ago, I purchased a gas detector from Swift. It is installed under stove in bottom cupboard and was triggered by the leaking shut off valve. A wise purchase.

We also notice the screws securing the stove adjacent to the burners continually require tightening. I think some thread glue may be in order.


FollowupID: 858431

Follow Up By: Wally - Monday, Sep 21, 2015 at 08:54

Monday, Sep 21, 2015 at 08:54
Thanks Grumpy. We have since done our research on the Swift website & have been in touch with them. We live in Victoria so they have offered (at their head office) to do a full service. Thanks for your suggestions & hope you enjoyed your trip as we have just incorporated where you have been in our last trip too (we are on our way home now). Regards, Wally
FollowupID: 858557

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