FEELS OK IN THE TOW VEHICLE, MUST BE OK IN THE BUSHTRACKER..

 
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Bushtracker
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Joined: 12 Jul 2007
Posts: 5038
Location: Kunda Park
State:: Queensland
Current Bushtracker owner:: Yes
PostPosted: Mon Jul 16, 2007 12:57 pm    Post subject: FEELS OK IN THE TOW VEHICLE, MUST BE OK IN THE BUSHTRACKER.. Reply with quote

The Biggest Single Problem for Bushtracker, and a TIP for Newbies and Veterans… Travel too hard, too fast, too high of tyre pressure on the CORRUGATION and you can break things...!! (And then of course it is our fault) Ha!

This happens to original Owners and second hand Owners, but is more common to Newbies.. Once in a while we get a Newbie just absolutely THRASHING a Bushtracker to serious damage. It usually is the inexperienced, that travel too hard, too fast, and do not let tyres down enough on the corrugation… Sometimes the People travel at a speed that is comfortable inside the tow vehicle, as they are going so FAST on the corrugation that they are skimming over the top of the peaks of corrugation. Awwww, feels good, must be OK for the van… NOT TRUE..!

Often they cross the Outback, doing serious damage, until they meet up with another Bushtracker Owner that is wiser and more experienced, and then are asked “What tyre pressure are you running?” The response is sometimes: “I dunno, haven’t checked since I left the Factory”…. And then the Experienced asks: “How fast are you going?” The Newbie then says: “Oh, about 80 or 90 on the corrugation, whatever feels good…” By this time they have beat up gear, broken fridge shelves off overloaded with drinks, thrashed the battery charger, fractured plates in batteries, jumped spring packs clear out of the sockets even with retainers in place, broken the microwave, or other things that are a common result of too hard of travel on the corrugation…… Then of course, when the van is already damaged, they reduce the tyre pressure really low and slow down to limp back to us for rectification on Warranty. We ask them how fast they have been going and what tyre pressure they are running, and of course they do not lie, they just tell half the truth about the return trip, not how they set out and caused the damage in the first place. It is only Human Nature… And some of them do not even understand mechanical things at all, and those are the hardest to get through to as they live in denial…. Again, Human Nature a bit. They do not understand they hit a rut so bloody hard they knocked the alignment out on one wheel and are scrubbing that tyre. They may not have even felt it when they did, and it takes a really hard blow to knock one out of alignment but you CAN do it… Thank God this does not happen to most, but about 1 in 50 do damage before they realize what they are doing...

Then of course all of these things are our Fault… And we are blamed for it all…. And some are so mechanically inexperienced they have a hard time even coming to grips with it… Someone scrubbing a tyre, told they need to get the alignment done, sometimes think that we did not do it at the Factory, when they in fact do not realize they hit a rut so hard it knocked out the alignment. It is not their fault, but it is hard to get through to some not mechanically in tune, that they are CAUSING THE DAMAGE, with hard driving, and it is not happening on its own! It has even happened (rare but) to some that have not been off the road yet.. Some have done it hitting a curb hard with the wider van in town, or cutting a corner and slamming into a curb hard can do it… Some that bash into a curb really hard might not even know it, going forward with the leading tyre or going backwards with the trailing tyre.. It has happened a couple of times on even relatively newer vans over the last decade.. The tow vehicle track may not have hit the rut or obstacle like the track of the van did, and some assume it is not possible to have happened because they did not feel it themselves… So we sometime have a little trouble getting through to people.. We align both sides, both wheels at once, and double check our work. This is just an example of unintentional hard treatment of the vans, unknowingly by the Owners…

There are no hard and fast rules with regards to speed and tyre pressures, as the corrugations are all different and road conditions vary, as well as different tow vehicles have varied power and suspensions and it is hard to gauge. The one rule is err on the side of softer and slower when in doubt. We need to shake our Big City hard going schedules early on, before doing damage to the vans… This is a change of Lifestyle, and you need to start by slowing down and running softer in Life…

Now I cannot tell you to do this, as it would be ILLEGAL… But if you did not know how the van was traveling on the corrugation, if one were to drive while the other sat in the van, YOU MIGHT BE IN FOR A BIG SURPRISE!!! With all the fancy air shocks and suspension upgrades on the tow vehicles, like overloaded Fords and Landcruisers and such with boats on top and air bags over the springs that can be adjusted for ride, the tow vehicles have a lot more latitude on severe corrugation than do the vans… A comfortable high speed run on the corrugation in the tow vehicle, could be beating hell right out of the van…. It might just scare you right into reality to see how much THRASHING the interior and contents are taking… Some traveling at 80 kph on corrugation might find that the actual speed should be 40-50 kph…

Regards from the lone Ranger, trying to look after you...
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Minnie



Joined: 31 May 2008
Posts: 4
Location: Clermont
State:: Qld
Current Bushtracker owner:: No
PostPosted: Sun Jun 01, 2008 8:47 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Seems to me, Ranger, that it's all about common sense too, which seems to go AWOL as soon as some people hit the dirt.

My husband and I travelled the Gibb River Road in our (then) camper trailer, where the corrugations can be so deep that you lose sight of small birds ahead of you on the road, when they periodically dip down into the corrugations for whatever reason they do. We took our time, sometimes down to 40kph (and even less in the really bad patches), but it was incredible how many vehicles were travelling at speed in these conditions; both passing us from the other direction or overtaking us.
When camped along the way, we'd often hear the odd one or two say, "Ah mate, you've got to get right on top of the corrugations, and it's a breeze." Our observations were, "If you could only see what that was doing to your van/camper as you passed us, you'd think twice."

But then again, some people are never at fault, and will always prefer to blame someone else when their equipment starts breaking.
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Bushtracker
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Joined: 12 Jul 2007
Posts: 5038
Location: Kunda Park
State:: Queensland
Current Bushtracker owner:: Yes
PostPosted: Thu Jun 12, 2008 12:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Two people at the Brisbane Show have related to me that they have solved the occassional breakage they have been experiencing.. Never mind I have already told them the cause of it. On their own they have reported doing something dangerous and illegal... They have had the Missus drive on a corrugated road while they sat in the van.

Both indicated they were shocked, Shocked and now understand what they have been breaking things.. Their highly modified suspension under the tow vehicle, allowed them travel speeds that were excessive for the van. They have both indicated that I was right, and they are now slowing down and running on more reduced tyre pressure.

DO NOT do this dangerous and illegal test, PLEASE... Take my word for it, two Bushtracker Owners have now done this on their own. If you are breaking things, slow down, and let the tyres down more, OK?

Best Regards, stg
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