Caravan Snaking

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Apr 8, 2019
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Hi
I think this thread has been resolved, however this video is an excellent demonstration of how incorrectly loaded trainers/caravans can respond... snaking demo vid

ps, i had a Ford Focus pulling a very small eldis that started to snake as i was going down a hill with the wind behind me with a fast coach overtaking me on the motorway. It went into a snake. It was VERY scary. I recovered, but now watch my speed and caravan weight distribution keenly.
 
Mar 14, 2005
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Hi
I think this thread has been resolved, however this video is an excellent demonstration of how incorrectly loaded trainers/caravans can respond... snaking demo vid

ps, i had a Ford Focus pulling a very small eldis that started to snake as i was going down a hill with the wind behind me with a fast coach overtaking me on the motorway. It went into a snake. It was VERY scary. I recovered, but now watch my speed and caravan weight distribution keenly.
There are at least two similar demo's on the internet, and whilst they do demonstrate the principle of Yaw Inertia, they are not accurate representations of caravans. In a caravan there is already quite a lot of mass distributed towards the ends of the trailer with body work and fittings, so it often does not need very much end loading to to make them more susceptible to instability.
 
Aug 16, 2020
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Hi All just to let you know I've just purchased a 3 litre VW Touareg R line it's says it's towing limit is 3500kg braked.

Car weighs around 2100kg and caravan 1134kg so takes me close to the 3500kg limit
 
May 24, 2014
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Incorrect. Your towing weight is claiming that you can tow a trailer of 3500kg. You dont need to add the cars kerbweight to the trailers weight, thats actually train weight. I have the Shogun with the same towing capacity. You have gone t'other way now, overkill :giggle:

As an example, my kerbweight is 2300kg, car loaded for a trip probably around 2850 kg inc passengers. Caravan loaded is 1850kg, so my trainweight for that unit is around 4700kg.

Never thought to ask, does your licence cover you for B+E?
 
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Parksy

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Nov 12, 2009
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Hi All just to let you know I've just purchased a 3 litre VW Touareg R line it's says it's towing limit is 3500kg braked.

Car weighs around 2100kg and caravan 1134kg so takes me close to the 3500kg limit
Congratulations on your new towcar, but don't forget that correct caravan loading and a noseweight figure close to the limits are paramount.
I've seen Range Rovers towing relatively light caravans suffer from instability.
When overtaking larger vehicles, trucks etc; aim to carry out your overtake on inclines whenever possible.
Overtaking large trucks, coaches or car transporters on downhill stretches of motorway with unpredictable side winds and rutted carriageway can lead to some buttock clenching episodes.
 
Nov 11, 2009
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Hi All just to let you know I've just purchased a 3 litre VW Touareg R line it's says it's towing limit is 3500kg braked.

Car weighs around 2100kg and caravan 1134kg so takes me close to the 3500kg limit
If you are worried about the 3500 kg limit you must only have a B licence. If so you are above the legal limit if your caravan MTPLM is 1360kg. That’s assuming the weight quoted for the Touareg is kerbweight. One website gives Touareg GVW as 2870 kg . That 3500 kg limit is the sum of the cars Gross Vehicle Weight plus MTPLM, and it doesn’t matter if the vehicles are loaded or not, it is the sum of the plated weights. So by any calculation if you only have a B licence the outfit is illegal. That being the case your best option would be to take the test to upgrade your licence.

Alternatively if you have B/E happy touring you have a nice outfit.
 
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Jul 18, 2017
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If the cars maximum towing load is 1200 kg there’s absolutely no problem in towing a caravan with an MTPLM exceeding 1200 kg, providing its unloaded and its MRO is below 1200 kg. It’s not going to invalidate the insurance. However as has been shown the OP can only tow his caravan if it is in MRO state. IE virtually unloaded except for the fitted mover. As such the OP would be just under the cars towing limit and he would be legal. But the arrangements are totally impractical.
As the caravan is plated at 1360kg I would think that the onus would be on the drive to prove that the weight was under 1200kg at the time of the mishap. The insurance company would have a solid fact that the caravan MTPLM exceeded the car's towing capability. However that is neither here or there as the OP has made the correct decision to upgrade the vehicle to something more suitable.
 
Jul 18, 2017
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Hi All just to let you know I've just purchased a 3 litre VW Touareg R line it's says it's towing limit is 3500kg braked.

Car weighs around 2100kg and caravan 1134kg so takes me close to the 3500kg limit
The R line seems to have a gross maximum weight of 2880kg. Caravan MTPLM is 1360kg. You need to add the maximum figures together and not the minimum weights.

Together they exceed 3500kg by a good margin as combined weight is 4860kg so you will need a B+E driving licence.
 
Aug 16, 2020
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If you are worried about the 3500 kg limit you must only have a B licence. If so you are above the legal limit if your caravan MTPLM is 1360kg. That’s assuming the weight quoted for the Touareg is kerbweight. One website gives Touareg GVW as 2870 kg . That 3500 kg limit is the sum of the cars Gross Vehicle Weight plus MTPLM, and it doesn’t matter if the vehicles are loaded or not, it is the sum of the plated weights. So by any calculation if you only have a B licence the outfit is illegal. That being the case your best option would be to take the test to upgrade your licence.

Alternatively if you have B/E happy touring you have a nice outfit.
Thanks I am planning on taking my towing licence.
 
Mar 29, 2021
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Been here done that.
My first ever caravan snaked first tow, pulled into the services literally 6 miles in to the journey, ditched the nose weight gauge, rearranged the caravan so it was heavier on the nose, set off again, perfect!.
Recently ditched the bathroom scales and stick for the Milenco gauge, a pricey item but worth every penny.
 
Mar 29, 2021
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When we tow a caravan the front wants to and does to some extent lift, hence speed and nose weight play an important factor in stability by reducing this effect, check out Google for the explanation, I read it some years back, its in my head somewhere but alas not quite sure where!
 
May 7, 2012
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You should aim for at least 5% of the caravans weigh as your noseweight. That is 60 kg for 1,200 kg of caravan. 50 kg should not cause serious instability, but it will not help.
 
Jul 18, 2017
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You should aim for at least 5% of the caravans weigh as your noseweight. That is 60 kg for 1,200 kg of caravan. 50 kg should not cause serious instability, but it will not help.
Caravan MTPLM is 1360kg so 5% is 68kg minimum. Guideline is between 5 and 7%. At 6% that is 80kg which I would think is a lot better than 50 or 60kg. Stil relevant even if they are upgrading the vehicle and need to take their B+E driving licence.
 
Jun 16, 2010
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Been here done that.
My first ever caravan snaked first tow, pulled into the services literally 6 miles in to the journey, ditched the nose weight gauge, rearranged the caravan so it was heavier on the nose, set off again, perfect!.
Recently ditched the bathroom scales and stick for the Milenco gauge, a pricey item but worth every penny.
I'm with you on that, first time out i diligently set the noseweight using some very questionable techniques. Within a few miles of very uncomfortable towing, i moved the awning from the back of the caravan to the front.
Night and day difference!
 
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Jan 31, 2018
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Touareg is a superb towcar by all accounts-you can't go wrong and once your licence allows it there are very few caravans you won't be able to tow!
 
Nov 11, 2009
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Surely discussing percent noseweight is academic for the OP. He’s bought a Touareg so he can run the caravan noseweight close to the Touareg maximum or the caravans maximum. Whichever is the lower. Even his present car can take 80 kg if the OP were to take his unladen caravan somewhere.
 
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Jun 20, 2005
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Well Paul
You have gone for a block buster Tug. Max nose load 140 kgs. Forget all this ,” It can tow 3500kgs” True but not in caravanning terms. See all previous advice.
I have a Touareg after15 years of very faithful Sorentos. Just remember it’s all about loading not size or muscle.
 
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Mar 14, 2005
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As the caravan is plated at 1360kg I would think that the onus would be on the drive to prove that the weight was under 1200kg at the time of the mishap. The insurance company would have a solid fact that the caravan MTPLM exceeded the car's towing capability. However that is neither here or there as the OP has made the correct decision to upgrade the vehicle to something more suitable.
Wrong.

The onus is on the prosecution to prove a misdemeanour. (innocent until proven guilty)

If an excess weight offense is being investigated, the suspect vehicles must be weighed to establish if the permitted limit has been exceeded. Otherwise it would be free for all and the police could for example accuse you of speeding becasue you have a car that can exceed the speed limit without actual evidence.

The occasions where the plated weights themselves rather than measured weights are usually driving licence entitlement infringements.
 
Jun 20, 2005
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Wrong.

The onus is on the prosecution to prove a misdemeanour. (innocent until proven guilty)

If an excess weight offense is being investigated, the suspect vehicles must be weighed to establish if the permitted limit has been exceeded. Otherwise it would be free for all and the police could for example accuse you of speeding becasue you have a car that can exceed the speed limit without actual evidence.

The occasions where the plated weights themselves rather than measured weights are usually driving licence entitlement infringements.
I thought Buckman was referring to the Insurer rather than the Courts?? If the former the OP would without doubt have to prove his innocence if he wanted his claim paid?
 
Mar 14, 2005
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Even an insurer would want to be very certain of the ground they stand on, because they would lay themselves open to challenge for unfair trading or contracts.
 
Jul 18, 2017
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Wrong.

The onus is on the prosecution to prove a misdemeanour. (innocent until proven guilty)

If an excess weight offense is being investigated, the suspect vehicles must be weighed to establish if the permitted limit has been exceeded. Otherwise it would be free for all and the police could for example accuse you of speeding becasue you have a car that can exceed the speed limit without actual evidence.

The occasions where the plated weights themselves rather than measured weights are usually driving licence entitlement infringements.
Who mentioned anything about police and prosecutions and solicitors. Please read my post as it was in reference to insurance company who would look at plated weights and would then have a good cause to reject a claim. Get your facts right before telling people they are wrong! I wait for an apology.
 
Jun 20, 2005
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Even an insurer would want to be very certain of the ground they stand on, because they would lay themselves open to challenge for unfair trading or contracts.
All Insurance policies have written into the Contract a Complains Procedure. This explains why cases are referred to the Financial Ombudsman Service. In the example quoted I suspect a repudiation of policy liability would be a distinct possibility. It is then encumbent on the Insured to prove his case.
 
Mar 29, 2021
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No idea about insurance, in fact I bought a policy by mistake which I later read and it specifically says I'm not insured away from base site or whilst towing!
Oh well, live and learn.
 
Jan 31, 2018
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As has already been said-not sure why this thread continues after ' I've bought a Touareg'. Perhaps it could be another thread?
 
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