Weight issues

May 29, 2018
280
42
4,685
Ok so I’ll get to nose weight later. I’ve loaded the van with everything (apart from clothes and food) and hitched up and popped down the the local dynamic axle weighbridge at the ferry terminal.

Our boot is still empty but car has roofbox with stuff in it and as I said before, the van has all equipment loaded in plus gas bottles etc.

So all we need to add is suitcases and food to the boot.

The car’s says this:


Here’s the readings from the weighbridge:

Front axle: 1080kg (so 70kg under)
Rear axle: 1150kg (so 100kg under)
Van axle: 1480kg (so 38kg under MTPLM)

Gross train was 3710kg (so 680kg under)

I assume that I’m ok on all counts there????

My nose weight issue is about trying to work out what my target is and then how to get to that. I’m guessing too nose heavy needs some weight further back and vice-verse.

However things are looking good I think.

Any pointers on all of this are most welcome.

Here’s a shot of the outfit for judging:

 
Nov 16, 2015
9,517
2,162
30,935
Ste6t9 said:
Ok so I’ll get to nose weight later. I’ve loaded the van with everything (apart from clothes and food) and hitched up and popped down the the local dynamic axle weighbridge at the ferry terminal.

Our boot is still empty but car has roofbox with stuff in it and as I said before, the van has all equipment loaded in plus gas bottles etc.

So all we need to add is suitcases and food to the boot.

The car’s says this:


Here’s the readings from the weighbridge:

Front axle: 1080kg (so 70kg under)
Rear axle: 1150kg (so 100kg under)
Van axle: 1480kg (so 38kg under MTPLM)

Gross train was 3710kg (so 680kg under)

I assume that I’m ok on all counts there????

My nose weight issue is about trying to work out what my target is and then how to get to that. I’m guessing too nose heavy needs some weight further back and vice-verse.

However things are looking good I think.

Any pointers on all of this are most welcome.

Here’s a shot of the outfit for judging:


Ste, if it tows nice then its ok, all you weights are good, don't worry too much, weight will change as you travel, gas goes down front end gets ligher, dirty clothes (in or case get moved from lockers to the wardrobe washing basket) one day the toilet rinse is full, 7kg next travel day 2 kg. Just think your weights are good now. Don't do a Craig and over fill the caravan with wine until you come home. Relax a bit more, you will enjoy your holiday better. Just dont park in small village market places on a Friday night . You get fined and cannot get out until you have made sausage and bacon sandwiches for about a hundred people. Uses up your bacon and sausage supply. Egg banjos on white Uk bread go down a treat. You will be fine, relax and enjoy yourself , If you get lost then go to a local cafe, ask for a coffee or a beer and ask where you can park a caravan for the night. .
 
Oct 17, 2010
1,166
382
19,435
Hi What weight issues. Your nose weight ideal target is 5 to 7% of your MTPLM bearing in mind the lowest maximum of the hitch or tow ball. Be careful moving weight back to lighten the nose weight,
 
Oct 12, 2013
3,037
4
0
That's looking great Ste , almost as good as ours !!

[/url]

That's packed for 2 weeks and didn't even look like it's was hooked onto the back as the car hardly lowered suspension wise .
 
Mar 14, 2005
9,536
495
30,935
lutzschelisch.wix.com
Ste6t9 said:
Here’s the readings from the weighbridge:

Front axle: 1080kg (so 70kg under)
Rear axle: 1150kg (so 100kg under)
Van axle: 1480kg (so 38kg under MTPLM)

Gross train was 3710kg (so 680kg under)

If the van axle reading is 1480kg and its MTPLM 1518kg (according to the figures above), then unless the noseweight is less than 38kg, the caravan will be exceeding its MTPLM.
 

JTQ

May 7, 2005
2,970
886
20,935
Lutz said:
Ste6t9 said:
Here’s the readings from the weighbridge:

Front axle: 1080kg (so 70kg under)
Rear axle: 1150kg (so 100kg under)
Van axle: 1480kg (so 38kg under MTPLM)

Gross train was 3710kg (so 680kg under)

If the van axle reading is 1480kg and its MTPLM 1518kg (according to the figures above), then unless the noseweight is less than 38kg, the caravan will be exceeding its MTPLM.

I agree that is the inevitable conclusion from the supplied info, and accept the plate MTPLM figure carries its legal implications.
However, these maker's MTPLM seem to be almost arbitrarily decided by the makers in not relating to any physical capability of the equipment but the addition of the MIRO plus an NCC formula based on the number of berths together with other fix allowances for gas fluids etc.

Of technical rather that legal relevance what is the capability of the van's axle, the second figure on the van's weight plate, is that over the measured 1480kg ?
 
May 29, 2018
280
42
4,685
Craigyoung said:
That's looking great Ste , almost as good as ours !!

[/url]

That's packed for 2 weeks and didn't even look like it's was hooked onto the back as the car hardly lowered suspension wise .

Nothing I can do at this late stage but I’m guessing that the outlander may not be the best towcar around. At present the boot is EMPTY and I’ve got barely any wiggle room to put anything in it
 
Mar 14, 2005
9,536
495
30,935
lutzschelisch.wix.com
JTQ said:
I agree that is the inevitable conclusion from the supplied info, and accept the plate MTPLM figure carries its legal implications.
However. These maker's MTPLM seem to be almost arbitrarily decided by the makers, not relating to the physical capability of the equipment but the addition of the MIRO plus an NCC formula based on the number of berths together with other fix allowances for gas fluids etc.

Of technical rather that legal relevance what is the capability of the van's axle, the second figure on the van's weight plate, is that over the measured 1480kg ?

The caravan manufacturer is perfectly at liberty to limit the MTPLM to a value less than the permitted axle load. He can even limit the maximum permitted axle load to a value less than what is displayed on the axle itself. The reasons for this may be technical or other. We have no way of knowing. Fact is, that the manufacturer is only product liable for the MTPLM and max. axle loads that he has had type approved and which are all displayed on the caravan manufacturer's statutory plate, whatever these loads are, so it would be unwise to exceed them even if the maximum permitted axle load shown on the axle itself is higher.
 
Nov 11, 2009
17,580
4,841
50,935
A plea from me. Please don’t let us open up the old chestnut of “ if the noseweight is on the car I can’t be exceeding the MTPLM” I’ve lost count of the number of times that ones been around. Axle load should be ignored when loading a caravan. The key weights are MIRO, and MTPLM which then define payload. Sometimes MTPLM and payload can be increased by the maker issuing a revised certificate of compliance and tally plate. But other than that the caravanner has two weights to consider and when he/she is within those weights the noseweight is adjusted to suit the car or caravan whichever is the lower. It’s not that difficult.
 
Feb 23, 2018
889
66
4,935
otherclive said:
A plea from me. Please don’t let us open up the old chestnut of “ if the noseweight is on the car I can’t be exceeding the MTPLM” I’ve lost count of the number of times that ones been around. Axle load should be ignored when loading a caravan. The key weights are MIRO, and MTPLM which then define payload. Sometimes MTPLM and payload can be increased by the maker issuing a revised certificate of compliance and tally plate. But other than that the caravanner has two weights to consider and when he/she is within those weights the noseweight is adjusted to suit the car or caravan whichever is the lower. It’s not that difficult.

This thread does seem to be over complicating things - I've always kept a record of the items in the caravan and their weight to keep an eye on the payload - it does creep up. But in terms of items in the car, only the security items and other set-up bits are of any significant weight. Drinks and some breakable items travel in the car along with the TV. I've never worried about what the car weighs so long as the tonneau gets pulled over.

Edit: Packed for a 2 week tour of Scotland: https://drive.google.com/file/d/1v25wLYq9m9JTbRvqzJaICp2lolIhQn_o/view?usp=drivesdk
 
Mar 14, 2005
9,536
495
30,935
lutzschelisch.wix.com
otherclive said:
Axle load should be ignored when loading a caravan. The key weights are MIRO, and MTPLM which then define payload.

Axle load should not be ignored when loading a caravan although if you are within the MTPLM almost inevitably you will also be within the permitted axle load unless you have a negative noseweight, which I hope will not be the case. Max. axle load is just as much a plated weight as MTPLM and max. noseweight. It's all displayed on the same plate anyway.
 
Nov 11, 2009
17,580
4,841
50,935
I think your comment only reinforces what I said. If MTPLM is not exceeded then the axle load rating will not be exceeded and the loaded caravan is “legal”. People seem to overt complicate what is not a complex issue. I would say “ it’s not rocket science” but that might be taken as trivialising the accomplishments of Apollo 11.
 
Mar 14, 2005
9,536
495
30,935
lutzschelisch.wix.com
Quite true. I would just like to add that I cannot understand why anyone would want to climb under the caravan to read a plate that may be on the axle. Such a plate is entirely irrelevant to the final customer.
 
Mar 14, 2005
16,537
2,419
50,935
A couple comments have suggested this thread has been over complicated.

Well the fact was pointed out that the figures the OP had provided points to exceeding the caravans MTPLM! If pointing out an infringement is over complicating the issue, then what is the point of the forum?

I would also point out we may know many of these point have been discussed several times over previously, and the discussions are available through the search engine, but clearly the fact the subject does reoccur shows that the search function is not used or is not effective, so it is relevant to revisit these issues when required.

If a reader feels the subject has been covered, the reader can choose to ignore it.
 
Nov 11, 2009
17,580
4,841
50,935
ProfJohnL said:
A couple comments have suggested this thread has been over complicated.

Well the fact was pointed out that the figures the OP had provided points to exceeding the caravans MTPLM! If pointing out an infringement is over complicating the issue, then what is the point of the forum?

I would also point out we may know many of these point have been discussed several times over previously, and the discussions are available through the search engine, but clearly the fact the subject does reoccur shows that the search function is not used or is not effective, so it is relevant to revisit these issues when required.

If a reader feels the subject has been covered, the reader can choose to ignore it.

My point about overly complicated refers to the fact that the basics are quite simple. But so often it then goes down the path of can noseweight be deducted when hitched to the car. We then rapidly get into "well who says it's illegal?' or "they cannot weigh a smashed up caravan" and so on.

From a mechanics point of view noseweight applied to the car will reduce axle load but has absolutely no bearing on the makers specification of MTPLM being what its is....Maximum Permissible .... Those two words couldn't be any clearer could they?
 
Mar 14, 2005
16,537
2,419
50,935
otherclive said:
My point about overly complicated refers to the fact that the basics are quite simple. But so often it then goes down the path of can noseweight be deducted when hitched to the car. We then rapidly get into "well who says it's illegal?' or "they cannot weigh a smashed up caravan" and so on.

From a mechanics point of view noseweight applied to the car will reduce axle load but has absolutely no bearing on the makers specification of MTPLM being what its is....Maximum Permissible .... Those two words couldn't be any clearer could they?

In this particular thread the effect of nose load and the MTPLM is highly relevant for the reason that Lutz pointed out.

The problem is the OP seemed to consider the trailers axle load to be the sole figure to be compared to the MTPLM. When in fact its the nose load + trailer axle load that combined should be compared to the MTPLM, and given the OP's figures which suggest he would be running at an impracticably low nose load value becasue of the high axle load he already has.

It is important the OP is made aware of this issue becasue of his close proximity to the limits he has available.
 
Jun 26, 2017
445
16
10,685
Hello Ste,

Great to see that you’re almost ready for your first caravanning trip abroad ! - I just know that you’ll have a fantastic time ! :p

If I may, I would just like to offer a little advice, as an owner of a van with the same layout as yours ...

Being completely new to caravanning until we bought ours in March of 2017, I was quite surprised to discover after the first couple of trips that with little other than a 7KG calor gas bottle and wastemaster in the front locker, and with only bedding, crockery and cutlery on board, the van’s noseweight was approaching 110KG ! :woohoo: - Significantly beyond the maximum tow hitch loading of 90KG as specified by VW, the manufacturer of our tow car. I’m sure a central, rather than rear washroom doesn’t help with this long, yet single-axle configuration.

Since making this discovery, I have the aquaroll, TV, Cadac and associated accessories, 4 camping chairs, additional bedding, family games and the pink and blue fluids serving as rear ballast, spread gradually across the floor, stretching from just behind the axle to the rear seating area. Then, with the awning placed meticulously directly above the axle, we are between 85 and 90KG noseweight.

The main reason for my post was that you mention having gas bottles on board, rather than a single gas bottle. With two full 7KG bottles in the front locker, or even one full and one empty one, I would have to add even more ballast to the rear to keep the noseweight within acceptable limits, which would of course increase the overall weight.

With the exception of a couple of beers, some cooked meats and salad, all food, clothing, shoes and even EHU cable travel in the car.

Might be worth a check before you set off and make any adjustments accordingly ?

Hope this helps .... Have a fantastic Holiday !

Ic.
 
May 29, 2018
280
42
4,685
Yes I think it’s definitely down to the layout. The front locker is now empty save for a half full 6kg bottle and a full 3.9kg bottle. (We’re going for 16 nights so think I may need them both).

I am redistributing accordingly and then remeasuring but looking at the layout I think you are correct that a central washroom doesn’t help.

Anyway, nose gauge out again tomorrow plus I’ve also shaved 20kg off the van but removing a couple of things we didn’t need to take along
 
Mar 14, 2005
9,536
495
30,935
lutzschelisch.wix.com
Ste6t9 said:
I am redistributing accordingly and then remeasuring but looking at the layout I think you are correct that a central washroom doesn’t help.
My caravan has a central washroom and yet in a completely unladen condition, like when I picked it up from the dealer, the noseweight was probably not more than 25kg, so it does depend on more than just the location of the washroom.
 
Nov 11, 2009
17,580
4,841
50,935
Mines got battery, hot water tank, pump, PSU all under the offside front locker. Then comes the fridge, storage unit with work surface and sink all on the offside and in front of the axle. On the nearside the sideboard is in front of the axle and being generous the gas/electric heater might just be over the axle.

It’s probably the trickiest caravan that I have had for loading nose weight. Nothing goes in the two under seat front lockers. A couple of light recliners fit down the center between the seats. The rest goes progressively aft and low down. Normally only ever one gas bottle. Gave up on Wastemaster. Load bearing exercise is supposedly good for old bones.
 
May 29, 2018
280
42
4,685
Thanks for this Clive. I’m thinking I may risk just taking a full 3.9kg gas bottle and leaving the other at home. Will I manage 2 weeks on that???

I don’t put anything in the front storage areas under seats and thinking about it, there’s an awful lot of fixed stuff in front of the axle.
 
Nov 11, 2009
17,580
4,841
50,935
Ste6t9 said:
Thanks for this Clive. I’m thinking I may risk just taking a full 3.9kg gas bottle and leaving the other at home. Will I manage 2 weeks on that???

I don’t put anything in the front storage areas under seats and thinking about it, there’s an awful lot of fixed stuff in front of the axle.

When we did trips to southern France and could pretty well guarantee good weather we would have been okay on that. There were only the two of us and we only BBQ in the evening and didn’t do cooked breakfasts etc.

If you did empty the small bottle you could always use the bigger one which will last forever in warm weather unless you do roast dinners at lunch time every day :)
 
May 29, 2018
280
42
4,685
otherclive said:
Ste6t9 said:
Thanks for this Clive. I’m thinking I may risk just taking a full 3.9kg gas bottle and leaving the other at home. Will I manage 2 weeks on that???

I don’t put anything in the front storage areas under seats and thinking about it, there’s an awful lot of fixed stuff in front of the axle.

When we did trips to southern France and could pretty well guarantee good weather we would have been okay on that. There were only the two of us and we only BBQ in the evening and didn’t do cooked breakfasts etc.

If you did empty the small bottle you could always use the bigger one which will last forever in warm weather unless you do roast dinners at lunch time every day :)

Yes, I just was thinking about not bothering with the big one and leaving it at home.
 
Nov 16, 2015
9,517
2,162
30,935
Ste, I would carry the small 3.9 in the rear footwell of the car, I know its not good practice but when you pick up a new bottle where do you carry it. ? My first few time over to France I used to take three 6kg calor bottles for winter, for 4 weeks, 2 full bottles in the summer, as I remember only used 1 full bottle in the summer/ Autumn , BBQ every day.
You have lightened your, caravan a lot, thing like extra Blue and Pink toilet stuff, carry minimum buy it over there, but not Switzerland.
We take one set of "Smartish " clothes just in case somewhere really expensive, twice in six years, and we took the dogs in, I think your maybe worrying too much, tinned food items can be bought over in Europe easily,
 
Mar 14, 2005
16,537
2,419
50,935
EH52ARH said:
Ste, I would carry the small 3.9 in the rear footwell of the car, I know its not good practice ......

It certainly isn't a good idea, in fact its its about as bad as it can possibly be!.

Just in case any reader does not know why;, LPG as you should know is highly flammable when mixed in the right proportions with air. The gas vapour is heavier than air so any leak on the cylinder is going to collect in the footwell and build up to a dangerous level quite easily. In addition there are so many switch contacts inside a car there would be an almost certain probability of any collected gas igniting certainly enough to burn the occupants if not explode.

There is enough energy contained in a full gas bottle to not only blow the windows out but to physically rip open the roof of a car.

Even the smallest loose gas cylinder inside a car will become a deadly missile in the event of a collision.

It is irresponsible to even suggest carrying portable gas bottles inside a car.
 

TRENDING THREADS

Latest posts