Sunday, 24 June 2018

Sew civilised!

I used my apple print loo bag for the first time the other day.  It worked very well (!), which then prompted me to make two more - for using when out and about in Elmer.

I'd already bought the "red dust" face cloths and had lizard print fabric in the stash.  I think it was originally intended for Vaughan but he's a bit old for it now.

The bright frogs were a more recent purchase. I bought the last available fat quarter, which meant a contrast strip was needed to create the loo bag.

My new frog and lizard kits had their first trip yesterday, though the frogs were the day's pick.

I'd also crafted a new picnic table cloth with the remaining lizard print and a bargain remnant of spotty lime green fabric.  It was super cheery for our al fresco dining and toned nicely with our picnic set.

The feather print bag in the top collage is for Di's new camping kettle.  It's a spouted billy design, so a little different to ours  - and I made this bag bigger to easily accommodate the larger spout.

Di bought a small feather dream-catcher for her new truck. As I had feather fabric in the stash, it was used for a loo bag and also featured on another bag, which holds a soft feather motif blanket. (The kettle bag uses a different feather print, which Erin cleverly spotted in a remnant bin).

Di refers to her hand-wash kit as a dunny bag which has caught on here, though we tend to use the friendlier term - DB!

Saturday, 19 May 2018

Bags the loo!

Last September I made a bag for our picnic kettle.  I really liked how it turned out and have used the same method to make various other bags since - one for a pair of billies, one for shoe-cleaning equipment and now several dubbed "new car kits".

What's a new car kit? When I wanted to give gifts to all the new car owners in our family, I chose to make something practical.

I've kept a hand-towel, small soap and loo paper in Elmer for quite a few years. When we were still in Victoria, I trialed a different storage method for those items.  It worked for a while but I'm sure my new system is better.

The minion and apple drawstring bags each hold a roll of toilet paper, small hand towel (well, technically it's a large face washer) and soap. Erin's minion set has a small pack of tissues but she may choose to stash them elsewhere. I'll probably include a little bottle of hand sanitiser in the bags as well. We've visited a lot of public toilets over the years. They vary greatly in terms of quality, so we carry our own supplies. Generally soap and hand towel are enough but sometimes we do need to take loo paper. (If we are particularly well stocked, we are happy to leave a roll in the cubicle - cos we're a generous bunch)!

From time to time there isn't water available at the public conveniences, so we wash hands back at the car - cos we carry water with us, even on day-trips.  If all else fails, we use hand sanitiser!

Thursday, 18 January 2018

Seam's water-tight?!

When we returned from Yowah in early October, we traveled 920km over two days - in solid rain.

Once home again we discovered the large storage box was not waterproof. Drat!

We use a tub for washing up and that was half-full of water! Amazing! 

During our transit period when we lived in a small van, it was easy to see where the roof leaked - because we could watch the drips forming along the ceiling.   It's a bit trickier to be sure about the storage box leaks.  The box roof is made from two panels and it may be that water accessed the box via that seam.  There was some sealant evident but Nick added another layer today.  Fingers crossed that works!

Out with the old ...

Our camper trailer was built to suit the needs of it's previous owner and while our requirements are similar, we don't use gas as a fuel source.

We did consider leaving the gas bottle holders in place but none of our re-purposing ideas worked, so Nick removed the rings (and the upright spare tyre mount) today.

After taking off the surplus mounts, Nick measured the space between the jerry can holders. We looked online at ready-made metal tool boxes and heavy-duty cargo crates.  None fit the space though and it seemed a bit silly to pay $100.00 or more for something that wasn't right.

While I was pondering other options, Nick went back downstairs and retrieved the smaller wooden box which he had made in preparation for our 2010 Yowah trip.

It was slightly too long for the gap but fit well otherwise. Nick cut one end off and then re-fixed the panel, shortening the length.  The box now rests snugly in the available area.

There's a bit more work to be done but our two Cobb Cookers fit into the box nicely - hooray!

Wednesday, 17 January 2018

We gave him a lift!

Unlike our first Fudd truck, Elmer the Gold was a standard 1996 Landcruiser when we bought him. The previous owner had not made any modifications.

In contrast Elmer the Blue was already fitted with a 2" lift.  Not only did that make him taller, it strengthened his rear suspension for towing.

The difference between the two Elmers was quite obvious when we bought our camper trailer.  The top pic shows it hooked up the day we brought it home.  (It was empty at the time).  The middle and second photos were taken after the  heavier suspension was fitted - much better, eh?!

The rear end sagging was more obvious when we had an overnight trip in August (top pic of second collage) and then drove fully loaded out to Yowah in September (middle and bottom pics of second collage).

It wasn't possible to organise Elmer the Gold's lift kit before heading out to Yowah.  The best available option was to book him into the mechanic the day after we returned. 

He's now as tall as his predecessor and after miscalculating our exits a few times in early October (ie Erin and I both almost fell out, rather than dismounting gracefully), we are used to his increased height. 

For the record, Elmer the Gold is too tall for the 2.3m height-limit of most underground parking stations! Best we remember that!

Monday, 2 October 2017

Wet wanderings ...

It was still wet when we woke and started thinking about breakfast. Our first choice was cereal but that was packed in the trailer, whereas bread and eggs were in the cabin so we opted for boiled eggs on toast instead!

There wasn't much to pack up and we were back on the road a bit after 10:00am.  As we looked at all the huge sheets of water along the way, we were very pleased we'd slept in a cabin!

The distance from St George to home is 470km - and it rained heavily most of the way.  We saw many soggy emus and roos but not much else, although we did make a quick detour to Thallon for a glimpse of their painted silos.

It was raining and cold at Thallon.  Bandit was not at all impressed to be called out for a compulsory walk!

We rolled into Goondiwindi for a late lunch, opting for some very good takeaway.  Given all the rain, we ate in the car but crossed into NSW to do so - just for fun!

The trip home was uneventful - lots of water, some wildlife and a few loo stops.

We stretched our legs at Milmerran (during a break in the rain), gave Mr Dog a walk - and admired the lovely bottle trees.

There was another stop at Toowoomba, to buy lunch items cos Vaughan would go back to school in the morning.  Elmer the Gold also had a morning appoint-ment, to be fitted with improved suspension - which would make him taller and more like his predecessor!

Sunday, 1 October 2017

St George stop-over

We delayed our original departure date so as to attend the Grand Final spit roast night. It was a lot of fun - even though we aren't football fans!

No one likes packing up and there had been a lot of rain overnight, which made conditions very soggy/more difficult.

Nick tarped the bed before folding up the camper trailer and we did our best with various other gear.

Suitcases rode on the roof-racks, contained within gear bags.  I didn't give a lot of thought to extra water-proofing and a library book arrived home sodden.  We replaced the book and will research upgrades to our roof-rack bags. 

Eventually we were ready to roll out.  I remembered to take a quick photo of Vaughan near Eulo, for the now/then archives.  (In 2010 his head was barely higher than the flood marker)!

We stopped for late lunch at Cunnamulla around 3:30pm.  It rained heavily the rest of the day.

We planned to free camp on the way home but the thought of setting up our wet gear in the rain didn't appeal - and it seemed Erin in her swag might float away during the night!

Given the long weekend and our desire for a pet-friendly cabin, I wasn't sure how successful we'd be.

We reached St George at 7:30pm.  Erin made some calls while we re-fueled at the 24-hour pump.

We just about cheered when we found a Bandit-friendly cabin at a tourist park around the corner!

It was great to be out of the car - and out of the rain. We were hugely relieved not to be camping in the amazingly wet conditions!

The cabin tariff was $100.00 and felt like the best $100.00 we've ever spent!

(Yowah to St George = 450km or almost half-way home).