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Book details
  • SubGenre:Camping
  • Language:English
  • Pages:100
  • eBook ISBN:9780987445100

The Camper Trailer Book

Second Edition

by Collyn Rivers

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The Camper Trailer Book covers, in detail, every aspect of camper trailers and their use. As with all of Collyn River's books it describes (in plain English) approaches that will work, not that just might work. The author is a former motor industry research engineer, who also practices what he describes. He and his wife have crossed Australia and back again, mainly via tracks across its centre, more than 12 times. In earlier times, the author crossed Africa twice (including the Sahara).
This book was first published in March 2006 and updated each year. Camper trailers and their usage however changed so fast that, by 2012, this Second Edition became necessary. A small part of the original was thoroughly revised, but most of it has been totally rewritten. It also contains a great deal of additional material - and has 20 more pages (in its printed form). Camper trailers, in essence offer the freedom and pleasures of camping but without the latter’s discomforts. Further, a well-made off-road camper trailer can be towed almost anywhere a towing vehicle is capable of taking it. That these benefits are widely appreciated is shown by camper trailers continuing to be the largest growing sector of the RV market. Camper trailers vary from box trailers with a basic tent and mattress – to complex products costing more than caravans. Most over $12,500 or so are well designed and well made. Some superbly so. Yet despite the huge number already in use, little unbiased and technically reliable advice is available, particularly regarding suspension systems and tyres, fridges, and electrical systems. These and many other related matters are obscured by inaccurate and misleading advice from campfire and Internet mythology, specially that relating to batteries and solar. The Camper Trailer Book attempts to clarify issues such as the pros and cons of independent suspension, and why shock absorbers are essential. It covers electrics in depth because no other book deals with the specialised electrical needs of camper trailers and 4WD owners. This book shows how to make fridges, battery charging and solar work as they should. And, as many people do their own work, it also covers the building and modification of camper trailers and their systems. It provides approaches that will work, not simply ones that may work. Camper trailers enter the market, leave the market, and change in specification and price very often. For that I recommend the dedicated www:campertrailers.org website. It has updated details of every camper trailer on the Australian market.
About the author
Following three years in the Royal Air Force as a ground radar engineer, I spent a short time working in England at de Havilland (in the guided missile area) and then in the Research Laboratory of Vauxhall/Bedford (General Motors), specialising in the monitoring and measuring various aspects of vehicle behaviour and performance. In 1959-1960, a companion and I drove a large Bedford QL 4WD twice across the length and breadth of Africa, gaining first-hand experience that I use (in my work on vehicle suspension and stability) to this day. I then moved permanently to Australia (via two years in Libya - in telecommunications), became an Australian citizen and then spent some years designing and building scientific testing equipment - from coal sample XY-ray scanners to 500 tonne concrete testers. In 1970 I switched careers to found and develop what became the worldwide ‘Electronics Today International’ magazine, and other publications in electronics, computing, telecommunications, and music. From 1982-1990 I was technology editor of the national magazines, ‘The Bulletin’ and ‘Australian Business’. I founded the periodical ‘Australian Communications’, also wrote the Australian Federal Government’s ‘Guide to Information Technology’. Apart from The Camper Trailer Book, my other current books include the Campervan & Motorhome Book, Motorhome Electrics, Solar That Really Works, and Solar Success. I am currently writing a solar engineering course and text book for auto electricians that is also running in series form in that industry’s trade journal. My wife (Maarit) and I have travelled extensively around and across Australia, including to the tip of Cape York, the long route across the Simpson desert, and most of Australia’s inland tracks, in our self converted OKA (an Australia-made specialist 4WD truck). It was replaced in 2006 by our subsequently modified Tvan. Altogether, we crossed Australia and return (via mostly overland tracks through the Centre) more than 12 times, of which 3 were with our 4.2 litre Nissan Patrol and Tvan. We lived in a self-built hi-tech home (100% self-designed and built solar powered) alongside the Indian Ocean, on 10 acres of otherwise untouched Kimberley land, 20 km north of Broome from 2000-2010. Home is now an all-solar powered and solar heated home in Church Point, Sydney, Australia.