Saturday, 28 February 2015

The technical stuff (finally!!)

After a lot of nagging I have finally sat down to write what we have been up to in the past few months..
A lot has been going on so if I miss something out I do apologise!
Firstly one of the most important things we have purchased is a 45L Terrafirma fridge (to ensure that we have cold beers and can keep the meet fresh). I spent hours upon hours looking at the various options available from Engel to Arb, however after weighing everything out and keeping a keen eye on the budget I felt that the Underdog Terrafirma was the best option for us. This has now been placed an a locking front runner fridge side for ease of use.
On the long straight roads I think that music is going to play a big role with passing the time so have installed a good stereo head unit which should drown out Cat's singing
A T-max split charge system and leisure battery has now been fitted. We went with T-max split charge as it enables us to monitor both batteries and at the same time ensures us that both batteries are charged.
Following that we have put on new front and back stub axles, new bearings all round, steering shaft, new brake calipers and pads, extended breathers and made a flip down table on the back door. We have also opted for a t-max air compressor that is fairly large however seems as this is going to be used frequently I think it will be worth it. The only thing that I am disappointed with is that you cannot fit it under the bonnet unlike the ARB compressors - I suppose that is why they have the price tag they do.
Also we got our hands on a really nice aluminium lockable box for the roof box which doubles up as the perfect sun down viewing point. At this point it is extremely useful to hold our bulky sides for the tent and awning, as well as the braai.
The next thing I need to mention is that we have fitted a Goodwinch tds winch, this came with a cable however to save weight and to add to safety we opted for a synthetic rope instead.
Next thing is water... and I spend a lot of time researching this however I ended up thinking simple is best so we have 2 x 25l storage bottle that is connected to a seaflo 12v pump with a RO 0.5micron water filter. This comes out of a self coiling hose out the back door that will serve as our shower cooking water. For drinking water we have a lifesaver filtration bottle that removes all bacteria so should help prevent the travelers stomach... if you know what I mean.
I have decided to build extra storage by adding a second shelf and making the most of the side dead spaces. This will incorporate a fuse and switch board for the future lights that I need to install. With the budget in mind again I have gone for waterproof led strips that will be placed inside the tent, under the tent to light up the back door and along the awning however this will be a bit of trial and error to find the best places for this. The best thing with using led strips is that they are very economic and draw minimal energy as well as not over heating for a easy £7 for 5 meters.
At the last land rover show Landy Lubber had really help us out again with some max trax, D shackles and a nice little safe for pass ports and cash.
Right now for the list of things that still need doing..
Fit the hi lift jack holder Finish the storage system Finish water system Switch board Garmin Montana with tracks for Africa maps Full service New filters Change the exhaust to a side exhaust so that I can start the engine when the tent is fully set up New steering box and pump Tyres (will be ordering as soon as possible) Duel fuel cooker Small pressure cooker Oztent bi folding table Tools Binoculars
As mentioned I am positive that I have left things out but looking forward to our next trip to give everything a test.
If you have any questions or advise please do get in contact!
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Sunday, 22 February 2015

Update: First Aid courses and injections!

After promising there would be a technical update in the last post and it never emerging (not my fault!), I found myself with a spare half hour to update on our progress - (I cannot believe I last updated in December!!).

At the beginning of February we had an all day first course with Peter from the Oxford College of First Aid ( It was a brilliant day, a very steep learning curve! We covered general health, CPR, recovery, major cuts, burns, splints along with a variety of other little bits and pieces! He also gave us a basic First Aid Kit contents list which we need to buy (our First Aid Kit box is going to be very large and extensive) and also suggested getting some antibiotics from our doctors before we go).

Charles has been busy adding to the interior of the Landrover - he is supposed to be finishing it off today! He has also bought a water pump to fit the shower (look on the facebook page to see Rob's). FIngers crossed it will all get done soon....

We have all been having injections (with varying degrees of success)! The injections include: diphtheria, polio, tetanus, hep A, typhoid (all these were on the NHS), and hep B, Yellow Fever, meningitis and cholera. Malaria tablets have also been discussed. My advise being with injections is to make sure you start the process 8 months at least before you go, each of our doctors (we go to 3 different ones between us), have a different procedure with varying processes. Mine have been very hard to book and get appointments with however Mandy and Rob have nearly finished all theirs! The approximate costs have been around £300-£350.

Again I am waiting for the technical stuff from Charles.... I am hoping this post will kick him into gear (fingers cross this evening!!).