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  #1  
Old 03-04-2012, 20:55
smyth602 smyth602 is offline
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Location: Scottish Dark Sky Observatory, Ayrshire
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Default Taking the full-time plunge!

Sooooo... At the weekend the dog and I will be taking the plunge and moving into my new static for the next 6 months, possibly longer! The caravan's a bit old and tatty, but structurally sound and a decent size (30x10).

Because of the remote location, this is going to be a totally off-the-grid set up - only a generator for power at the moment, then a battery bank and solar panels once funds allow.

Done so far: UPDATED 30/04/2012
  • Caravan moved to new home (no small feat as its in the middle of nowhere!)
  • 1000l water tank in place.
  • Secure store for generator built..
  • Gas partially hooked up and functional
  • Caravan cleaned & tidied
  • Generator hooked up and electrics overhauled
  • Plumbing systems mostly fixed except one leak in bathroom
  • Curtains up - helps with the cold!
  • Caravan (mostly) levelled and secured down to concrete anchor block

Still to do:
  • Overhaul waste system as it seems to have fallen apart(!).
  • Build composting toilet (only practical solution where I'll be).
  • Buy & install log burner (in place of gas fire).
  • Buy & install mini mechanical washing machine.
  • Have gas appliances (water heater, cooker and fire) safety-checked

I know there'll be loads more that I've not thought about still to do, and i plan to strip out the caravan and redecorate/rebuild as time goes on but i can live with just giving it a clean for now.

Anyways, wish me luck! (Oh, and feel free to drop any advice you think I'll need )

Martin

EDIT: Pics are up!
http://s1049.photobucket.com/albums/s398/smyth602/

Last edited by smyth602; 01-05-2012 at 14:34.
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  #2  
Old 03-04-2012, 21:18
mick1950 mick1950 is offline
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welcome martin,and good luck.sounds like you are going to be rather busy this summer.where is van situated?are you going to live in it?
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  #3  
Old 03-04-2012, 21:21
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Tiamaria589 Tiamaria589 is offline
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are you going to live in it while you do a self build? there are a few people on here that have got vans for exactly that reason x
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Old 03-04-2012, 21:25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by smyth602 View Post
Sooooo... At the weekend the dog and I will be taking the plunge and moving into my new static for the next 6 months, possibly longer! The caravan's a bit old and tatty, but structurally sound and a decent size (30x10).

Because of the remote location, this is going to be a totally off-the-grid set up - only a generator for power at the moment, then a battery bank and solar panels once funds allow.

Done so far:
  • Caravan moved to new home (no small feat as its in the middle of nowhere!)
  • 1000l water tank sourced and about to be filled and moved to site.
  • Secure store for generator being built in a couple of days.
  • Gas man coming to check over the water heater, cooker and fire on friday.

Still to do:
  • Overhaul plumbing and waste systems as they seem to have fallen apart(!).
  • Re-wire connection between socket and breaker box (cut for some unknown reason).
  • Build composting toilet (only practical solution where I'll be).
  • Clean out caravan interior (been empty for a while, bit of a mess with dead flies/old junk etc)
  • Buy & install log burner (in place of gas fire).
  • Buy & install mini mechanical washing machine.

I know there'll be loads more that I've not thought about still to do, and i plan to strip out the caravan and redecorate/rebuild as time goes on but i can live with just giving it a clean for now.

Anyways, wish me luck! (Oh, and feel free to drop any advice you think I'll need )

Martin
hi martin welcome to site , i just wondered why you are doing all this ? are you doing a house up living in temporarily ,? how old is the caravan ? intriguing but sounds like have work cut out , just wondered why you have one that needs so many alterations ? good luck anyway let us know how it goes ,
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  #5  
Old 03-04-2012, 21:43
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bluemax90 bluemax90 is offline
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and the best of luck
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  #6  
Old 03-04-2012, 21:56
smyth602 smyth602 is offline
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Location: Scottish Dark Sky Observatory, Ayrshire
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Sorry, should have explained a bit more to be honest - i'm sure i put this in the first post, but obviously not!

I'm involved in the design & build of a new stellar observatory in Ayrshire, Scotland. The hope is to build a house for the observatory manager in a little sheltered valley just behind the telescope building itself, (and fingers crossed that'll be me when it comes to the opening) but in the meantime i'll be providing a bit of site security during the build.

The caravan needs some work like i've mentioned, but at the same time i was given it for free, and most of the work is cosmetic so i'm not complaining. There are some more technical bits to do, but i can turn my hand to most things (won't touch gas) so i'll just plug away at it until things are the way i want them
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Old 03-04-2012, 21:59
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Quote:
Originally Posted by smyth602 View Post
Sorry, should have explained a bit more to be honest - i'm sure i put this in the first post, but obviously not!

I'm involved in the design & build of a new stellar observatory in Ayrshire, Scotland. The hope is to build a house for the observatory manager in a little sheltered valley just behind the telescope building itself, (and fingers crossed that'll be me when it comes to the opening) but in the meantime i'll be providing a bit of site security during the build.

The caravan needs some work like i've mentioned, but at the same time i was given it for free, and most of the work is cosmetic so i'm not complaining. There are some more technical bits to do, but i can turn my hand to most things (won't touch gas) so i'll just plug away at it until things are the way i want them
hi thanks for explaining , it all makes sense now ! guess for free you cant go wrong ,, a bit of an adventure !
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  #8  
Old 03-04-2012, 22:06
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Tiamaria589 Tiamaria589 is offline
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you have had a FREE caravan????

wowee lucky you and the project sounds very exciting too x

you sound like you are going to be very busy
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  #9  
Old 03-04-2012, 22:07
smyth602 smyth602 is offline
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In case anyone's interested, here's some links to info on the observatory. Still waiting for the proper website to be set up.

http://www.peoplesmillions.org.uk/20...ky-observatory

http://www.scotland.gov.uk/News/Rele...cience27012012

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-scotlan...tland-16756900
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  #10  
Old 03-04-2012, 22:15
smyth602 smyth602 is offline
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Oh, and not sure exactly what type of van it is to be honest - I know its a Willerby, and from the looks of the interior i'd guess at early 90's?, but not really sure. How would i find out?

Here's the site for the observatory: http://g.co/maps/ympxd There's an access track been created that's not on the images yet, and my new home is sitting between the two big clumps of trees you can see
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