This time we headed west and onto Dartmoor National Park. Alan and Jed arranged to head into the park not really knowing where they would end up as usual.
A meeting with a cool group of guys called www.flyonix.com was arranged for a part of this trip so a big thanks to Alex and Rupert. We were able to step the video making up this time and it is all due to the fantastic support we have received from the CampervaCulture.com community and subscribers through the sales of our cool tshirts, Westfalia Skylight parts and other goodies over the last couple of months. You guys made this happen and a big thanks to your ongoing support.
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When we set off on a CampervanCulture.com road trip we never really plan where we will end up or even head to on most occasions. Between the three of us we have built up quite a large list of cool places to stay as well as a bigger list of places we have been told about or have listed while passing on previous trips. Every video we have made never has a pre planned story board and we rely on random things that happen that you could never have found unless they were random.
This latest short trip was as full of randomness as usual but when we found loads of fossils, hung out with a massive group of Saxons, found a village that had been taken over by the army in WWII and has only been open to visit relatively recently and lots of it remains the same as it did back then, then bumped into CampervanCulture.com subscriber Tom and his amazing family in their Syncro Club Joker and we all camped out together in an epic camp spot, we had a random overload. It makes for a good video and we hope you guys like it and comment.
After a very long stretch of work before Christmas in Kent UK, Harriet and I decided as we were so close to the Dover ferry port it made sense to take a quick four day trip over to Belgium to visit some Christmas markets and soak up a bit of pre Christmas spirit.
Belgium is one of those places that we have always driven through on our way to get somewhere in the past, so we thought it was about time we actually headed there to have a look at what it has to offer (other than some amazing beer of course).
We made Bruges our initial destination to relax for a couple of days and take in some art galleries, architecture, food (and beer) and then headed out into the countryside to visit some of the famous WW1 battle grounds and memorial sites.
The Memorial sites turned out to be quite a sobering and contemplative experience, which is a little different to the usual jovial Campervan Culture videos, but its all interesting stuff nonetheless.
This time while Jake was out in his campervan setting out markers for a cancer charity event making full use of the 4WD that the VW Syncro has Jed took a more gentle approach to the weekend. It was another case of heading out and not really knowing where you will end up but they usually end up being the best weekends away.
If you like relaxing, free camping right on a beach, free mackerel, country pubs that are hundreds of years old, ancient villages that all the buildings have either stone or thatched roofs, out doors cooking then this is the video for you…
A weekend away with some fellow CampervanCulture.com subscibers turned into a mission when the vehicles suffered mechanical failures – 3 driveshafts, 3 cv joints, 3 cv boots, broken steering rack, one slashed tire and one snapped drop link!!
It was a case of bad luck for one of the vans owned by Syncro nut and now CampervanCulture.com partner Alan Hayes in his RHD 1.9 mTDI panel van/camper that had most of the issues that contributed to us taking 13 hours to do the Strata Florida trail / greenlane in South Wales. We have got to give Freds Garage a big THANK YOU from CampervanCulture for bailing us out and coming to the rescue by allowing us to use the workshop and a ramp to get sorted as well as providing Alan with a steering rack, CV joints and good old moral support to get things moving again.
Freds Garage is run by a great bunch of guys and fellow CampervanCulture subscribers that do everything from MOTs to servicing and repairs on any campervan and can be found at,
Telephone: 01554 772 341
Despite the dramas a great fun packed weekend was had as its not always about the driving but the laughs you have with mates doing it…
A while ago I noticed some bubbling rust on the outer part of my from chassis rail just behind the front suspension… To the untrained eye (mine!) it looks like a simple cut and weld in plate job…Alas it is a bit more involved as there is also an inner strengthening part which is spot welded to the outer…
I visited syncro specialist Syncro-Nutz up in Scotland for fellow syncro lover Russel to have a look at. Turns out the inner part was rusted pretty badly too and the entire front subframe with diff etc needed to be dropped to provide access..
Russel then began to cut the outer away..
Spot welds for drilling out:
The inner and outer parts removed – worse than I thought it was!
New inner and outer welded and then “spot welded” together – treated below:
Here is the one from the other side chassis rail:
And the finished work, all waxoyled inside and treated on the outside
Thanks to Russel and Syncro-Nutz I won’t be worrying about this area again – I’d get under your van and check your chassis rails for any bubbling – inner and outer parts. Be prepared for a couple of days in a workshop as it is a good few hours work to drop and refix the front subframe.. Great opportunity for me to fit my Power Steering rack – more on that later!
We love our Syncro’s and we love being diesel. However more than a few love their Syncros for their factory engine that came with it and the 2.1ij petrol flat four WBX isn’t to be sniffed at.. The MV was listed as supplying 95bhp whilst the the DJ with its 112bhp is no light weight on the road. Lets introduce a fella from the UK who goes by the name SyncroSimon on various VW forums who is passionate about his ex-Finnish army factory 16″ hightop syncro. It started life a very different color and now has an excellent home built custom interior that takes him away from home on many a wild camping Dad and Lad weekends.
Simon is at home ploughing through the snow in his 16″ syncro when the rest of Devon is to scared to venture outdoors down those narrow lanes.
SyncroSimon has fitted extra gauges so he knows exactly what his engine is doing whilst he is driving. He has taken some time out to explain what is happening on his 2.1i when it is cruising along and the behaviour that is to be expected from the engine in question. Check out his 2.1 injection demonstration a real must for all the Wasserboxer injection nerds out there…if we are lucky he might share his wing mirror indicator mod next time…!