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Subject Topic: Twin Axle, benefits?
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Message posted by dazzer252 on 10/10/2011 at 9:24am
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Hi Everyone,

Just sat in the van at Longleat CC and listening to seal's in the background (nice site by the way) and I am looking out the window at the other vans parked near to us.

As a number are twin axle I just wondered what the pro's and con's were of these over single axle one's? We are new to caravaning this year and have a single axle at the moment, and didn't go for a twin axle as there is no way our car would have pulled one anyway! So other than the fact that the vans are heavier, and hence they need a twin axle,  whats the benefits or negatives? Are they more stable to tow and easier to move ?

We are thinking of upgrading to a 5 or 6 berth van over the next 2 years (once we change the car) and it would be useful to know the above for when we finally start looking!

Cheers

Darren


Message posted by Mrs. Bonce on 10/10/2011 at 9:40am
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They are more stable to tow (OH can overtake lorries without risk of snaking), but you would need to have a motor mover fitted which will obviously add to the cost. The weight makes them nigh on impossible to push, even in a straight line, and you can't spin them around like a single axle. They cost more to insure and service as well. The extra length and width can cause a problem with access on some sites (we always ask about this). We need a 4x4 for towing which costs more in fuel. OH has just added that many sites in France, if you go there, have small pitches where you would struggle.

In spite of all this, we love ours and would not return to a single axle, the extra space is the main plus, as there are only two of us, we don't need an awning.


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Message posted by Greendemon315 on 10/10/2011 at 9:51am
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More stable to tow.  I'm sorry but I don't agree you have to have a motor mover, unless you want to park it behind your house.  I've never understood this idea of pushing caravans.  I can hardly walk, and we manage perfectly well with the Jeep.   We can put it anywhere we ant, and never push it one single inch.

I don't want to fall out with the people who like movers.  It's not personal, and it's a free choice.  I choose not to spend a silly amount of money on something that will take a big bite out of my payload.

Others do want to park in restricted spaces at home, but I was cured of that some years ago, when the police explained how it's a target for burglars, as well as an indicator of when you're away.

If you're in storage, I can't see why you would want a motor mover.  When I've said this before, some people have explained how some Continental sites are so tight that you need one.  I just wouldn't want to stay anywhere like that.  We like the wide open spaces.

As I said, a personal choice.  I would always have a twin axle though, if for example, you have a blowout, it has much less effect because it's only a quarter of the wheels.  Also, twins run at lower tyre pressures, which makes blowouts less likely, and less catastrophic.

Jim


Message posted by jennifernn on 10/10/2011 at 10:34am
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Yes, more stable, easier to reverse.

But heavier as generally larger, which is logical, so difficult to move by hand, slightly more costly to service, insurance will depend on value. 4 tyres to renew instead of two.

Newer vans are wider than older ones, but many single axles are just as wide as twins, so I don't think that is a big consideration these days. You do have to consider the length, but if you need more space, the van has to be longer. There are single axles that are as long as twins.

Vans have got bigger over the years, and not all sites have kept up with this, so there can be access issues, especially on the Cls and CSs.

We have the Mover, as we need it to park at home, but it is also very useful on site. And when fitting the Alko wheel locks!

While spacious pitches are of course the most desirable, we have several times abroad arrived on a pretty empty site only to end up surrounded by other vans/motorhomes come the weekend. Some countries do not have the "spacing" rules operated by the Clubs here!

If you do want/need a Mover, it is usually possible to uprate your MTPLM to give you the extra payload, rather than eating into your allowance. We were able to increase ours from 1815 to 1900 kg.

Not all vans can be uprated, so check before buying, if this is something you might want/need to do.

If you want the space, you do often have to move to a twin axle.



Post last edited on 10/10/2011 10:51:39

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Jennifer

Message posted by jeff juke on 10/10/2011 at 10:46am
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What i like about our twin is ive no awning to put up for extra space and the room inside it is brilliant.Its easy to reverse though heavy but on the down side ive got four tyres to buy instead of two.I could not go back now to a smaller van .

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Message posted by TonyC52 on 10/10/2011 at 10:52am
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As well as access as already mentioned some site simply say "no twin axels", may be due to size of pitch but if that is the case should restrict by length, may be an easy way to ristrict access to "unwanted units". So you do need to check commercial sites to see if you are ok to stay.

There is an overlap between long single axel caravans and twin axels but for anything that size I feel safer towing with a twin.

With respect to the need for a motor mover, I have stayed on sites with reasonable size pitches where I would still have had to ask several people to move cars in order to safely reverse onto a pitch but could "suffle in" using the mover.



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Tony C

Message posted by geoff+emmy on 10/10/2011 at 11:57am
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We have a twin and find it is much more stable to tow

But I think they do not hold their money like say a up to 1500kls ones do, as you do really need 200 horsepower+ to tow them. But second hand they are usally in better condition  as they have been bought by the older carravanners, except ours which this year has been used for 140 nights+

We have a motor-mover but its for "just in case" as i have to hitch up and pitch on my own


Message posted by D S B on 10/10/2011 at 12:31pm
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We have a single axle, but the one thing that just might convince me to go for a twin is what might happen in case of a blow out.  If one try goes, you still have another one left!  This may be a bit simplistic in reality, but to me appears to be a basic reality!  After saying that, I've been caravaning for more than 20 years and never had a blowout.

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Message posted by Missizippi on 10/10/2011 at 12:38pm
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Yes we also manage without a mover but we do have a front hitch in addition to rear which really does help if positioning is tricky. My OH pulls car trailers alot and would only ever use a twin axle for all the reasons mentioned before - blow outs, stability etc.

Message posted by alpiner on 10/10/2011 at 2:14pm
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We also have a twin axle van, very stable to tow and lots of living space, you will find lots of posts about twin axle vans and motor movers but like Missizippi a front towbar is the way to go as they are so easy to use and cost about 150, I would recommend one to anyone with a twin or Single axle van.
as for being turned away from sites never had any problems
we always mention that we have a twin whenever we book a site have never been refused.

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alpiner

Message posted by Zafiral on 10/10/2011 at 3:03pm
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Twin axle vans are more difficult to level & if your insurer insists on axle locks on both axles really is not possible without jacking the van.
As was stated above resale values are lwer which makes them good value 2nd hand. However the restriction of towcars will become more of an issue as emissions legislation is forcing towcars to get lighter. In 4 or 5 years time it could be only a very limited choice of cars to stick within your chosen weight ratio for a 1800kg van.

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Message posted by jennifernn on 10/10/2011 at 3:40pm
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Quote: Originally posted by geoff+emmy on 10/10/2011

We have a twin and find it is much more stable to tow

But I think they do not hold their money like say a up to 1500kls ones do, as you do really need 200 horsepower+ to tow them.




I don't think you need 200+ horsepower. We tow our 1900 kgs with 185 bhp, and it manages all the hills at a decent pace.


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Jennifer

Message posted by Greendemon315 on 10/10/2011 at 3:53pm
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I believe in big towcars anyway, so that's no problem.  They aren't that difficult to level, and with a bit of forethought, you don't normally need to level side to side anyway.

We insure with the CC, and they certainly don't insist on wheel locks.  You can get a discount for them, which we declined.  We just use a hitch lock.

If you just pay a bit more, you can make life a lot easier.

We tow 1800kg with 215bhp, and that's plenty.

Jim


Message posted by brianconwy on 10/10/2011 at 5:44pm
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We don't have a mover but do have a front pushbar.  Our towcar only has 138bhp and have not had any problems.  Levelling side to side is more complex.  We did have alko secure locks but because our drive is on a slope were a bit of a pain so have got 2 other wheel locks, but cc only asks for hitchlock.

Message posted by littlebasher on 10/10/2011 at 10:30pm
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Having just changed from two consecutive twin axles to a single axle, i can say that i haven't noticed any difference in stability - in fact i was kind of disappointed!

Looking forward to paying less for insurance, storage, servicing and tyres though!

As for 200bhp(!), the Lunar was 1500kgs and the Ranger 1580Kgs - both pulled by a 140bhp Diesel Sportage that never even broke a sweat and could out accelerate my daughters Picanto towing up hills!

Message posted by pamanddoug on 10/10/2011 at 11:03pm
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Ihave just bought a new twin axle so as yet Icannot comment on stability .As far as wheel locks go none of  the insurance companies secified two axle locks only that awheel clamp had to be fitted if the van was left unattended for more than two hours and when my wife said she wasn't happy about jacking the van to fit the second the salesman said no problem I'll give you a wheel clamp which is insurance approved anyway,and sure enough the insurance companies were happy and the only negative comment was that the CC could not give us the axle lock discount ,so dont think you have to jack it up every time

      doug



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