High Country 4WD Trip

4WD Trip preparation for High Country

We are lucky to have Don Bird working with us at Umhauers, Don has been an active member of the Geelong 4WD Club for 5 years, and has planned and enjoyed many club 4WDing trips. Read about Don’s upcoming trip and some useful tips on 4WD trip preparation.

 

 

Every year I love to get ready and go away on the Melbourne Cup weekend. I have found the more time spent at home checking and preparing the less time repairs on the Weekend. I try to at least look or check most systems on my trusty old Rodeo. Having taken the Rodeo into the High Country on numerous occasions I have learned that it has some drawbacks but with plenty of help offered by my fellow Geelong Four Wheel Drive Club members we can get it through all the Tracks, just a bit slower.

 

High Country 4WDing Trip

On top of Mount Wellington

 

I’m taking my two children this year and my youngest Daughter Oakli has just recently got her Learners Permit. Oakli will be driving a Four Wheel Drive Manual for the first time on this trip and with some guidance from her Older brother Rylan (who I’m sure will be great help)  and myself,  hopefully she can get some very valuable driving hours to enter into her Learners permit Log.

 

We have lots of work to do before we leave and some new additions to my Rodeo. I have just purchased a new Rhino Tradie Platform with side rails, Shovel Holder and Awning Brackets. I will install my ARB Awning and I am going to use my new ARB Three wall Awning Tent whenever we setup camp. The Awning Tent will be a great for cover at night for sleeping and ideal for changing clothes also. All our Swags will be going on Roof Rack and I use the ARB Double Swag Bags, these are great to make sure your Bedding remains dry even in the worst weather the High Country can throw at it.

 

I always check over my Fridge as it may require a bit of cleaning or freshen up prior to use. I like to clean the inside area of the Fridge when I get back home after a trip using a Vanilla scented spray which cleans and disinfects at the same time. As all your Food and Drinks will be stored in your Fridge it is best to have it nice and clean when in use. I have my Fridge going at least 3-4 days on 240 volt Power, and have most of the items that I am taking in Fridge to be chilled prior to putting into vehicle and heading off. Make sure to have tie down points as Fridges bouncing around are not the best for their inner components and compressor.

 

4WD trip preparation

 

  1. Vehicle Servicing is most important starting point to any Trip preparation planning. The checks undertaken during a Service would give you a better understanding of your vehicle systems condition. Important checks to Brakes, Cooling System, Oil levels, Driveline checks, Suspension Inspection, Air Cleaner and Snorkel and checks to Underbody components.

 

  1. Suspension upgrades which can give your vehicle greater load carrying capabilities required for off-road and also increased height for ground clearance in rough Terrain conditions.

4WD Suspension

  1. A Snorkel is very important in the High Country as there are many water crossings. The Snorkel allows the Vehicle to pass through rivers and creeks while getting Air required for the Engine high up on the side at Roof level. This also helps with reduced Dust being sucked into the Air Filter System.

4WD River Crossing

 

  1. Diff Breather Kits offer great protection against water getting into Gearbox, Transfer case and Differentials. Prior to entering a River crossing High temperatures inside the Diffs, Gearboxs and Transfer Cases will cause water to be “ Sucked in “ when cooled quickly by the water crossing. The kits remove Manufacturers Breather points which are mounted under the vehicle.  The kits allow  Airlines to be ran to a Manifold mounted higher up usually under the bonnet and have filters fitted which eliminate water ingress.

 

  1. Dual Battery systems allow the use of 12 volt appliances ( Fridges and Lighting ) to be used overnight without draining the Main Start Battery. One of the best systems currently on the market is the Red-Arc BCDC vehicle Charger. These units come in many Models depending on your requirements and vehicle make. The BCDC Charger will monitor, isolate and charge your Auxillary Battery while driving. Some models will also allow charging via Solar panels when vehicle is not running. This operation is great for many Campers who are now doing more and more “ Free Camping” as the BCDC Charger is perfect for Caravan charging Battery solutions.

 

Dual Battery System

 

  1. Bullbars offer great Protection against for damage against Animal strike and for protection of front of vehicle in bush travelling. Also great protection for radiator, under body at front and a solid platform for mounting of Winches, UHF Antennas and Driving lights of most shapes and sizes.

 

  1. Side Rails and Steps also are great for protection of Guards, Underbody and Sills. These can push aside small trees and branches when travelling along some of the more rough Tracks.

 

 

  1. Winches are a great solution to getting out of that tough spot if you are stuck. With many sizes on offer, best to consider size and make sure to include Camper Trailer or Caravan in your calculations just in case you get stuck while towing either of these. I carry a bag full of recovery gear just in case really get stuck. This bag of goodies include a quality snatch strap that has been cleaned and dried. Tree Trunk protector for a winching point and Snatch Block to reduce the load on the Winch. I carry a Winch extension strap as sometimes a large tree to anchor to could be beyond your winch cable reach.  Rated Bow Shackles are important as they are designed to carry and can  have loads applied to them safely.

 

  1. Communication using your UHF Radio in the Bush or Outback is a great way to keep in touch with other travellers in your Convoy or other Road users. Your UHF Radio can be a source of vital information such as Road Hazards and when travelling in Convoy for turnoff points along the way. The new XRS GME UHF has the new Blue Tooth programming that will allow Scan lists for all available Emergency Frequencies in the Area. Its many features can be discovered at the GME site

 

GME XRS-370C

Shop Online

  1. Recovery Points are required to fix winch and snatch straps for Recovering your vehicle. Factory Tie down points used for shipping your Vehicle are not rated for Recovery. The correct Recovery point has been Load rated and is fixed to the Chassis in a position that will ensure no damage will occur when using these points.

 

  1. Underbody Protection plates ensure damage to many Underbody components are eliminated . These plates usually start from the Bullbar and continue to the rear of Transfer Case. They are tailor made to suit your vehicle make and model to offer the best protection.

 

 

  1. Air Pressures in tyres are very important to help increase your vehicle’s “footprint”. By lowering Tyre Pressure more of the Tread is touching the ground at any given time. I like to run my Tyres at 22 PSI while in the Bush as this allows for greater Traction and an ability to take sharp objects eg ( Rocks and Sticks)  without punctures. The ARB De-Flator is ideal as it is accurate and fast in operation. To pump up again when you reach the Black top on the way home, you can have either a portable Air-Compressor kit or “Air on board” Compressor mounted in rear of vehicle or under the Bonnet.

 

We have been working out what food and meals we are going to take for the 5 days away. For cooking most of our meals we use the Hillbilly Camp Oven on the open fire.

hillbilly-camp-oven

Hillbilly Camp Oven

 

The main Oven we usually take a Roast and have Roasted Vegetables to enjoy a great Healthy Meal. I have a Pizza tray as well and take the pre-made pizza bases and have all the toppings we like to make our own selected Pizzas. Also I have a Cake tin which I can cook a Self-saucing Pudding or Bread while away and many of my fellow Camping mates have commented about how great some of our treats from the Camp oven smell and look. Even if it is more work to cook these meals I find it great to enjoy good meals while away Camping. The Hillbilly Oven has a Fry-pan for the lid and this is perfect for Egg & Bacon and BBQ cooking.

 

The Hill-Billy camp oven packs away in a Canvas Transit bag perfect for Four Wheel Drive travelling. When we are Travelling we use our Travel Buddy 12 volt oven. This certainly is another favourite of ours, everything from Pies, pasties, Donuts, pre-cooked meals in Foil Trays and I even know someone who has cooked a roast. One drawback is if you have the oven in the car you can smell the goodies cooking and sometimes items are removed before cooking times.

Travel-Buddy-12V-Marine-Ove

Buy Online

As we are Travelling each day during our Trip we are using Swags for the kids and a Stretcher for me ( bit easier on my back) and all of us have a quality Sleeping bag. They are rated to -12 degrees and believe me even in November one year we had Snow and frost so bad that water was pushed up out of the ground in cubes 25mm high before falling sideways. My vehicle struggled to start because I didn’t have enough Alpine Diesel in the Fuel Tank and the fuel turned waxy due to the extreme Cold. I will be adding an Additive to my Fuel to ensure this certainly does not happen again.

 

Some other items that I pack for 4WD Trips

 

  1. First Aid kit including Panadol, Nurofen, Cold and Flu and After sun lotion
  2. A tarp for bad weather to shelter under at night.
  3. I usually buy a 10 litre container of water from the supermarket, you can also use a Jerry Can on a rear bar to store water.
  4. Chainsaw and Axe to gather Firewood for those big warm Fires at night.
  5. A Comfy chair is best after a long day tour and Four Wheel Driving.
  6. A long handled shovel to use for recovery and getting hot coals from the fire when cooking Camp-oven .
  7. For all my mapping needs I enjoy spreading the map out on the Bonnet with everyone looking and planning Tracks for the day I use Hema on an Ipad and have it constantly marking our path so I can mark interesting points of interest, make notes of Track conditions and possible Campsites listed.
  8. It may seem like something that you take for granted but waterproof matches or Lighter to start fire.

 

And after all this preparation travel safe and get into the High Country and relax in that Comfy Chair around that big Open Fire to enjoy yourself!

 

Cheers Don Bird

 

 

 

GME XRS-370C

The new GME XRS Connect Radio Launch

One of our sales staff, Don Bird attended a GME product launch earlier in the month and this is his review of the new GME XRS.

 

On Tuesday 11th October I attended the Melbourne launch of the new XRS connect Radio by GME. The Representatives from GME were excited about their New Products and explained in detail their new XRS connect UHF series of Radios . The new XRS technology is a new Australia made radio platform powered by Bluetooth connectivity from your Mobile Phone to your UHF Radio via the Free App. Please find below some of the new features of the XRS Family of UHF radios.

 

GME XRS 370C

 

The First Radio to be released is the XRS- 370C which is available now and later this year the Compact version XRS-330C will become available. Both Apps are now available for both Radios.

 

  1. After downloading the Free App, the XRS Connect App enables any Software updates to be downloaded to your Mobile device. These updates then can be Bluetoothed over to your XRS Radio. Notifications of updates and new features will be sent to your device via the App.
  2. Using the App which has been designed for the UHF radio introduces the new share and scan feature which has instant access to all the Australian and New Zealand registered analogue frequency data bases. These can be used to create a list of frequencies in that local area and as your Radio scans these frequencies allows you to receive only any Emergency services Broadcasts.
  3. The XRS Radios come with a 5 year Warranty but can be extended if you register your Radio via the App.
  4. The New OLED Microphone Display offers great viewing angle for all the display nearly 160 degrees, crystal clear and antiglare display. It has a 2 watt speaker forward facing for greater sound quality. The Microphone has two programmable buttons which can be assigned to most Radio functions.
  5. The Scan suite Technology used in the TX3550S which will also work with both of the XRS Connect Radio can now scan an amazing 50 channels per second.
  6. The new XRS Radio also have a Factory reset  for both your Radio or App if any issues arise in Programming both your Radio or App just in case.
  7. Retail pricing for the XRS-370c is $579 and the XRS-330C when it becomes available $ 529.

GME XRS-370C

 

Find out about product details and buy online or come into our Geelong store and have a look at it.

 

It was great to attend the launch and see the Representatives who have been involved with the design of the new GME XRS, take such pride in a product entirely designed in Australia with most components made here in Australia.

 

More information is available at the GME website    www.gme.net.au/GETXRS

 

Safari ARMAX

Safari ARMAX ECU (Engine Control Unit)

Safari are pleased to announce their Vehicle Specific Engine Control Unit (ECU).
The ARMAX ECU is a product that has been in development for nearly 3 years.

 

The reason it took so long getting to market is because of the decision to not take a “shotgun” approach and try to reach all the vehicles on the market, instead to run a fully designed, engineered and thoroughly tested program on a small number of selected vehicles.

 

Safari ARMAX ECU 200 Series LC SMVDJ200A

 

The belief was to deliver a product that was absolutely correct for the vehicle that it was intended for rather than a “close enough is good enough” attitude. So although the model range is currently small, the product has been fully tested on each model. As testing and development continues more makes and models will be added to the range.

 

  1. ECU can be ordered with current Vehicle modifications pre-programmed eg Armax Snorkel and Exhaust Modifications. This eliminates need for Dyno Tuning.
  2. The ECU has three Modes which include : Towing, Comfort and Sport. These modes can be changed using the 3 Push Button Switches mounted at top of ECU.
  3. Each Vehicle Specific ECU has its own dedicated ,custom designed Wiring Harness and Mounting Bracketry. All of which is built to OME Standards and OME Suppliers.
  4. High Speed Processing calibrates internally stored Data against Engine real time information, it then will constantly adjust to suit Injector requirements.
  5. The Exhaust Temperature is the Fastest and most Reliable indicator to adjust and monitor Real time Temperatures within the Combustion Chamber of the Engine. This help protect these critical Temperatures and adjust fuel Ratios accordingly. An Industrial grade Thermocouple comes as part of the ECU kit and is mounted in exhaust manifold. If for any reason the thermocouple becomes inoperable the ECU reverts back to OEM calibrations.
  6. The Armax ECU is continuously Calibrating the Turbocharger Air delivery (BOOST) as a standard function of the ECU. This helps to maintain the critical Air/Fuel ratio at all times allowing the increased fuel volume necessary for improving improved diesel engine performance.
  7. The Armax ECU controls the duration of the Fuel injector. This method is preferred by Armax as adjustments to Fuel pump pressures are not required. The benefit of leaving the Fuel pressure set at OEM settings helps to keep the Injectors and other Fuel Components at their normal operating levels thus reducing the risks of premature failure. The Armax ECU adjusts the Injector duration times to deliver an exact amount required at any given time for increased performance.
  8. The Armax ECU has been manufactured to withstand tough Four wheel drive conditions. The newly developed Glass-Fibre reinforced housing is suitable for high temperature exposure found under the bonnet of the modern motor vehicle. Its rugged case has shock absorbing technology and complete sealing against typical Australian 4 X 4 environments.
  9. The Armax Ecu also has a “Cold Start” operation which stops the Armax ECU controlling the engine until it reaches normal operating levels. The Armax ECU then will begin to control Engine operations after that level is reached.
  10. Confidence in the product is very high and is backed by a 3 year unlimited kilometres warranty.

 

Safari ARMAX ECU 200 Series LC SMVDJ200A

 

Models already in the range include:

 

TOYOTA 70 SERIES   2007 TO CURRENT 1VD-FTV $2,997.50
TOYOTA 200 SERIES 2008 – 2015 1VD-FTV $2,997.50
TOYOTA 70 SERIES   1998 – 2006 1HD-FTE $2,695.00
TOYOTA 100 SERIES MANUAL 1998 – 2007 1HD-FTE $2,695.00
TOYOTA 100 SERIES AUTO       1998 – 2007 1HD-FTE $2,695.00
TOYOTA PRADO 150 SERIES MANUAL 2009- 20015 1KD- FTV $2,695.00
TOYOTA PRADO 150 SERIES AUTO       2009- 2015 1HD-FTV $2,695.00
TOYOTA HI-LUX  MANUAL  2005-2011 1KD-FTV $2,695.00
TOYOTA HI-LUX  AUTO        2005- 2011 1KD-FTV $2,695.00
TOYOTA HI-LUX  MANUAL  2011-2015 1KD-FTV $2,695.00
TOYOTA HI-LUX AUTO         2011-2015 1KD-FTV $2,695.00

 

The model for the Toyota Land Cruiser 70 Series (widenose) 1VD-FTV 2007 – 2016 is in our Geelong store if you would like to come and have a look at it.

 

For any further Pricing, Fitting Costs and a list of kits now available please contact our staff on (03) 5229 3910 or email us at sales@umhauers.com.au

Hayman Reese Hitch Step

New Product – The Hayman Reese Hitch Step

Designed to stay in place whilst towing, the new Hayman Reese Hitch Step mounts over the tow ball. Three simple steps is all it takes to assemble the step onto the towbar’s trailer ball mount.

 

The step features a high grade aluminium body with machine cut non-slip tread, making it corrosion resistant and giving extra grip for those slippery situations.

 

hayman-reese-hitch-step

 

Features:

 

  • Easy to install
  • Fits virtually any towbar, with a flat sided tow ball mount
  • Aluminium construction, that is light-weight & corrosion resistant
  • High-grip non-slip step, keeping you safe in the wet
  • Raised upper lip to prevent you sliding off
  • Trailer ready, no need to remove the step when you’re towing*
  • Weight rated to 120kg**
  • Ideal for boat owners, helps keep your feet dry when launching or retrieving your boat

* step cannot be used with weight distribution and may need to be removed for tight turns while towing.
** weight rating cannot exceed towbar’s down ball load rating, if it is less than 120kg

 

hayman-reese-hitch-step

 

hayman-reese-hitch-step

 

Product Information:

 

Part Number: 08364
Product Dimensions (Approx)
(L x W x H):
350mm x 80mm x 50mm
Weight Rating: 120kg

PowerCor Toyota Fortuner 2016 Fleet Fit Out

New Toyota Fortuners ready for delivery to a fleet client. Check out the accessories fitted and the video below.

 

 

 

Parts fitted include:

  • Milford Cargo Barrier
  • Hayman Reese Heavy Duty Tow Bar & Electronic Control Unit
  • Safe T Step (STS-NBH-001)
  • Redarc 20 AMP In-Vehicle DC Battery Charger (BCDC1220-IGN)
  • Aux Battery Tray
  • Century 12V Battery
  • Enerdrive E Power 2000 W Inverter (RCD-GPO-EP2000)
  • Narva Mega Fuse Holder
  • Rhino Heavy Duty Track Mount System
  • Rhino Multi Slide 3mtr & 4mtr Extension Ladder Rack (MS30-470 & MS40-470)
  • Rhino Cable Lock (RLLB) & Ladder Strap (RLS5)
  • Conduit Locking End Cap (LSE100)
  • 100mm PVC Conduit & End Cap
  • Rhino Conduit Clamp (BC3)
  • 6 x Ecco LED Strobe Amber Warning Lights (3735A)
  • KUFU Twin Roller Drawers

 

 

 

The Rhino Multi Slide Extension Ladder Racks are fully OH&S compliant, rigorously crash tested ladder rack system. They feature a rear roller that will allow you to effortlessly load and unload your ladder.

 

The Rhino Cable lock is a great easy solution to lock your ladders to your rhino rack bars.

 

Rhino Locking End Cap

 

The Rhino Conduit Locking End Capsuits 100m PVC pipes and provides maximum security with the built in Masterkey compatible steel locks. The cover plate includes high quality internal seals to keep your contents dry and protected using high impact materials.

 

Safe T Step

 

The Safe-T-Step hitch step or tow bar step allows you to get up and down from your vehicle safely. It will give you more access, more safety and a better height. You will find it so much easier to load everything and be able to safely move around without catching your shins hurt by tow balls or hitches.
The Milford Cargo Barrier provides the ultimate protection by securing your work gear and protecting you, your family and employees.

 

Milford Cargo Barrier

 

The Enerdrive ePOWER 2000W inverter will offer you reliable service for providing AC power and 5V USB power for your home, boat, caravan, 4WD or commercial vehicle.

 

The Enerdrive ePOWER 2000W Inverter can run many AC powered appliances when you need AC power anywhere. The 5V USB power can charge many USB powered devices.

 

Features:

 

  • Australian GPO Outlets
  • True sine wave output is ideal for operating motor loads, and to reduce stress on surge protection circuitry, meaning potentially longer equipment life
  • Audio alarm with warning/error codes to alert user to check inverter condition before unit shutdown
  • Automatic shutdown protects overload, over temperature and low/high battery conditions
  • High surge capacity for products that require more power to start (2 x constant)
  • High efficiency conversion of battery available power to AC power
  • Mounting brackets for permanent installation
  • Heavy duty DC battery stud connectors
  • Includes 5V USB port

 

The Redarc 20 AMP In-Vehicle DC Battery Charger is a 12 Volt DC to DC charger featuring technology designed to fully charge a lead acid auxiliary battery. The BCDC1220-IGN features a lower voltage setting so it can continue to operate with a low input voltage from the alternator.

 

The BCDC dual battery charger will work from a wide operating range (9 – 32V) giving the option of charging from both 12V and 24V vehicle systems.

 

By providing a unique charging profile to each specific battery type, the BCDC charger is able to achieve and maintain an optimal charge in auxiliary batteries whilst on the move. It will allow you to charge an auxiliary battery that is a different characteristic to the start battery.

 

The unit will act as a dual battery isolator and protect the start battery, should the voltage get too low.

 

Features

 

  • Multi Stage DC to DC Battery Charger
  • Start Battery Isolator
  • Fully sealed
  • No fan for super quiet operation
  • Charges AGM, Gel, Calcium content, VRLA and Standard Lead Acid batteries
  • Works with Variable Voltage Alternators

 

Contact Umhauers on (03) 5229 3910 Geelong or (03) 5561 4900 Warrnambool to organise a quote for a Commercial Vehicle Custom Fit Out or Fleet Vehicle Custom Fit Out or contact us via email.

 

Family 4WD Reviews & Vehicles towing capacity

Family 4WD Reviews & Vehicles towing capacity

 

Have you decided it’s time to buy a new family 4WD?

 

Check out this review on caradvice.com.au they have compared the Ford Everest, Isuzu MUX, Mitsubishi Pajero Sport, Nissan Patrol and Toyota Fortuner.

 


When purchasing a new 4WD it’s worthwhile looking into the vehicles towing capacity to ensure you can tow what you intend to tow, whether that’s a trailer or caravan.

 

A tow bar must have a capacity that exceeds the loaded weight of the trailer/caravan that you are intending to tow. Therefore you should check the rating of the towbar and the vehicles towing capacity which is included in the towing section of the vehicles handbook.

 
Vehicle towing capacity or trailer weight capacity – how much a vehicle can tow (The weight of a trailer or caravan fully loaded)

 

trailer ball weight capacity – how much down force can be put on the back of a vehicle (Generally 10% of the vehicle towing capacity, but this also depends on where the axle is and many other variable factors.)

 

Towing Reviews

Here are some online towing reviews that might assist you in your research

http://www.caravanworld.com.au/tow-vehicle-reviews/

http://www.mynrma.com.au/motoring-services/magazines/caravantowreviews.htm

http://caravanbuyersguide.com.au/tow-vehicle-guide/

http://www.carsguide.com.au/car-reviews/top-10-vehicles-for-towing-12094

 

 

 

What Tow Ball should I request?

 

The Australian Standard AS4177-2 recommends that 50mm towballs with a rating of 3500 Kg be used for towing trailers up to 3.5 tonne. *Source Hayman Reese

Hayman Reese have a FAQ page with lots of useful information about towing.

http://www.haymanreese.com.au/download/frequently-asked-questions

 

Police Blitz on overweight loads

 

Refer to a previous blog article about the police blitz on overweight loads. http://www.umhauers.com.au/police-blitz-on-overweight-loads/

 

Towing Accessories available at Umhauers

 

·         Redarc tow-pro elite brake control unit ·         12 pin flat trailer plug
·         Lockable hitch pin ·         Rated D shackles
·         Couple mate ·         Trailer chains
·         Reversing cameras at rear of caravan & vehicle ·         Hayman Reese Weight Distribution
·         Solar & charging system in your caravan ·         Hayman Reese Sway Bars to stop sway occurring
·         Wiring for 12 volt fridge circuit in your caravan controlled by ignition ·         Treg Block Coupling
·         Anderson plug to charge caravan batteries ·         Suspension to improve the vehicles GVM

 

If you are talking to your new car dealer and getting closer to ordering accessories for your 4WD, pop in and chat to our experienced staff. You can also browse our online shop.

Bog Out Vehicle Recovery Device

BOG OUT Vehicle Recovery Device

Vehicle Recovery Device

 

The BOG OUT Vehicle Recovery Device could well be the world’s most practical vehicle recovery kit!  Essentially, it is a very strong harness designed to turn your wheels into winches. Simply attach one end to a wheel that has lost traction, secure the other end to an anchor point, and drive out of trouble.

 

Bog-Out-on-Wheel4

 

4 Tonne resistant, BOG OUT works in mud, sand and snow.  It can be used either FORWARD or REVERSE and one person can successfully get a vehicle unstuck from a bog. Lightweight and compact, this Australian invention is safe, convenient and extremely strong.

 

Vehicle Recovery Device

  • 3 Tonne resistance tested
  • 5m long
  • Forward and Reverse
  • Works mud, sand & snow
  • Lightweight and compact
  • Australian designed and made
  • Turns wheels into winches

Bog-Out-Vehicle-Recovery-Device Bog Out Vehicle Recovery Device Twin Pack

BOG OUT is light weight, compact and economical. With simple instructions it will assist in removing vehicles from bogs by using the vehicles own wheels and tyres as winches.

Vehicle Recovery Device

 

You’ll never get stuck again where it’s muddy or sandy, always keep BOG OUT handy.

Visit www.bogout.com.au to find out more, available to purchase online or in store.

Crossing the Old Eyre Highway

Crossing the Old Eyre Highway

Shez & Warren from the Geelong 4WD Club recently went on a 4WD Trip to the Old Eyre Highway in WA and have written about their experience and provided some fantastic photos of their trip.

 

Crossing the Old Eyre Highway

 

While driving to WA isn’t unusual, you really do not have to stay on the Eyre highway for the entire trip. We  decided to drive the old Eyre highway for something different and it was a drive we had always wanted to do .The  old Eyre Highway stretches for 200 KS from the Nullarbor road house and ends at Border Village Roadhouse.

 

Crossing the Old Eyre Highway

 

It is a lonely stretch of road, and although it is not recommended that you take caravans on this road we did tow an off road camper with no troubles at all. As we began this adventure I decided to document the trip with interesting sights and also directions to the historic Koonalda Station, which was the main reason for doing this trip.

 

 

Start: The Nullarbor Roadhouse

Finish: Border Village Roadhouse

Suitable for: 4×4, camper trailers, bikes and 2 WD (if dry)

Distance: 203.34Km

Time required: You will need a minimum of one day to do this trip. (We stayed overnight)

Average driving speed on the old highway is 40/50 km/hr

 

As it is in a dessert, it is not recommended to drive between Dec and Feb.

 

There is no fuel on the old highway so fuel up at Nullarbor Road house, but beware the fuel is expensive. It will be wise to carry extra fuel with you. As well, you will need to be self-sufficient and carry the usual water, extra food, tyre repair tools. You will need to be aware of the quarantine if heading into Western Australia.

 

Crossing the Old Eyre Highway

 

To start this drive head west from the Nullarbor road House for 5mins (2.16 km) and turn right onto the old Eyre Highway, this is where the adventure begins.

 

It is a dusty dirt road and you will not come across a lot of traffic (if any).

 

Along the way you will find old water tanks that were used for the travellers, farmers and stock. Most are now just ruins but they still tell a story. The highway is littered with old car wrecks, and numerous sink holes and old quarries. We encountered Dingoes, camels, wedge tailed eagles and emus.

 

Crossing the Old Eyre Highway

 

The turn off to koonalda station/shearing shed /yards and Koonalda cave is 73.33 km from the start and will take approx. 4 mins to reach from the junction .It is well worth going in to see the historic station and spectacular cave. Once you arrive at the station it is a further 6.98 km in a northerly direction to the cave and should take around 12 mins.

 

Koonalda Shearing Shed

 

The Koonalda station is steeped in history. It is now under the control of the Nullarbor State Park. You can camp here and it is a great experience. It is so peaceful and the sky at night is spectacular as are the sunset and sun rise.

 

Stunning Sunset

 

Take the time to wonder through the homestead, shearing shed, the original petrol station and the car grave yard.

 

Konnalda Shearing Shed

 

Konnalda Car Grave Yard

 

The Cave is a natural wonder and needs to be seen to appreciate the geology and although fenced off for safety reasons, you can still get a good look into and around the cave. The cave once provided the water for the station and there is still equipment in the base of the cave.

Koonalda Cave

 

Leaving the homestead, head back to the junction and continue west along the dirt highway to Border Village roadhouse. There are older tank ruins and car wrecks to see. If you don’t want to continue all the way to the end (border village), you can continue straight and come out on the new Eyre highway SA side of border village.

Police blitz on overweight loads

There has been chatter in the caravan community in the last week about a police blitz on overweight loads, in particular caravans.

 

Caravan & Motor Home on Tour have written an article stating that the Police have been setting up mobile weigh stations, throwing caravans and tow vehicles on the scales, and slapping owners with fines up to $600, and taking up to 4 points off their licence.

 

Read the full article here http://www.candm.com.au/police-blitz-targeting-caravanners/

 

You can check your weight at a public weighbridge, visit http://netweigh.com.au/ for locations.

 

They have provided a guide on how to weight your vehicle and caravan here http://netweigh.com.au/how-it-works/caravan-weighing-guide/

 

What Umhauers can do to help:

 

– GVM Upgrades (Gross Vehicle Mass)
– Upgrade to a heavy duty tow bar

*These options are dependent on your vehicle manufacturer specifications

 

What our staff will need to know:

The estimated weight of your caravan & vehicle when fully loaded

 

Contact our staff on (03) 5229 3910 or email us at sales@umhauers.com.au

Stay safe on the roads.

 

 

Bev & Colin’s Touring and singing adventure around Australia

Bev & Colin’s Touring and singing adventure around Australia

Bev & Colin have sold their house in Warrnambool, bought a caravan and fitted out their 4×4 with everything they could need to start their journey touring around Australia.

 

Russell,-Colin-&-Bev

 

Colin asked “We want a practical functional outfit that will be reliable and easy to live out of “, so we sat down and roughed out a drawing and a list of wants keeping in mind it had to be set up to live out of with no lengthy set up times, easy to access and no complicated switching between charging options. “It all starts at Umhauers”.

 

Bev & Colin wanted to make sure that they were prepared for everything, I have a feeling that maybe Colin was a boy scout, because they really have made sure they have everything covered. We love helping our customers get their vehicles ready for touring, our staff in Warrnambool were proud to help Bev & Colin fit out their vehicle to their requirements.

 

To start with they had an MW Tool Box Canopy fitted to their tray, with lockable doors.

MW-Toolbox-Canopy

 

The aluminium MW jack off canopy was kitted out with KUFU roller drawers to store all sorts of things for them as well as a generator, a slide tray for the generator, a drop slide for their fridge, sensor lighting so when they open up any sections at night they can see what they are looking for as well as a 4 way switch panel.

 

Everything has been set up so they don’t have to reach into the different sections of the Canopy to get what they need, they just pull out a drawer or pull out the slide to get to the fridge or generator. Such an efficient set up for them to enjoy their adventures with minimum fuss.

 

aluminium-canopy-fitout-col

 

A Pioneer Tradie Roof Rack with a shovel holder, kufu deluxe awning and front wall.

 

Other items that they had fitted include:

Rock Tamers, Red Arc 150 watt Solar Panel, Red Arc BCDC1225LV with solar regulator, TruCharge 2 20 AMP charger, 130 AH AGM Battery, Narva 50AMP Anderson plug, GU Rear Spring Seat Reinforce Kit, 5W-80CH LCD MIC Radio and Aerial, Fuel master Prefilter Kit, Zenec Naviceiver so they can navigate their way around Australia with Hema Map Integration, Camera Kit for reverse cameras as well as SVS Mirror Monitor with Mini Cam, Donaldson 4WD Filter Kit and a Full Vehicle Service, 2 Jerry Can Holders, 3 Burner Stove, 2kg Gas Bottle, Stove Stand and BBQ plate, Rox Shocks Extreme, Ridepro Coil Spring, Firestone Air bags High Pressure +50MM with Kevlar protector, ARB 12V Air Compressor Twin Portable, Generator and a Hayman Reese weight distribution hitch to keep the van levelled and relieve the rear axles of excessive loading.

aluminium-canopy-fit-out-fr

 

KUFU Oval 24 watt LED work lights for the back of the vehicle, a KUFU Blast 17” 100 Watt Combo light bar, Quattro Elite 70W HID Pencil Beam and Spread Beam Driving Lights.

 

IMG_8044

 

Clearview Towing Mirrors so they can tow their caravan safely.

They plan on spending some time in the Echuca area near the Murray River and were also at the Elvis Parks Festival http://www.parkeselvisfestival.com.au/ in January and competing in the busking at the festival.

 

So they are off on a touring and singing adventure around Australia. Have an awesome adventure guys! We look forward to seeing some photos from your travels.

Our website is currently under maintenance, please call us on (03) 5229 3910 to place orders.

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