Tuesday, 20 November 2012

Wellington Dam

The culmination of 4 days off and some new canvas for the ulti meant I was going away. Wanted somewhere relatively close to home.

Arriving at the camp site, I'm shocked its so small. All the choice spots were taken by the grey nomads in their vans...figures....

So I decide to check out a spot nearby. This other place is chock-a-block, so after a bit of swearing and thinking of alternative sites, I decide to go back to the original site.

I decided we will stay here, not my idea of an ideal location, but it has the room for me to spread out my new canvas.

In the end, it ended up being not too bad at all, the grey nomads were pretty good.

As I was erecting the canvas, the other two buggered off down the dam to leave me to it. It was pretty warm. Especially being out in the sun trying to work out where all these pieces of new canvas go????

The custom front awning I had made was a pearler.....It was such a nice place to sit in the shade with the cooling breeze blowing. The main awning was a bit hot as the wind was coming from the front annex side of the Ulti.

The little un had been sick and missed Mon/Tue at school due to vomiting. Then she came good, so the weekend was a goer. Unfortunately whilst we were all asleep at 1030pm, she decided to christen the ulti big time.....sh*t...

Luckily most of it was in her pillow, but the ulti copped some all the same. Some how she missed her sleeping bag, so that was a bonus.

After emergency clean ups and some make shift pillow making, we all slept peacefully for the rest of the night. The little un had a tub to take to bed, just in case.

Sunday came around, so I decided to christen my hillbilly frypan I've had for over a year now. What better way to first fire it up than with bacon and eggs for breky.....

Later that afternoon, we decided to go for a bit of an explore. Came across a nice secluded campground. Well it would have been nice if the people who were marroning out of season didn't leave their flyblown scraps in a shopping bag out in the open. (they were nice sized marron too going by the festering shells) Also the toilet was full and neatly packed with the rubbish of previous camping trips. I mean really, If you can carry it in full, why cant you carry it out empty....Grrrrrr
I happened across DEC on the way out and made mention of the poor state of the campground.

The water was crystal clear and relatively deep. I did think about going for a dip at one stage.

Back at camp and we venture off down the dam for a look

what better things do kids have to do but make mud pies

and surf burnt out floating logs

while the rest of us just sit back thinking "how's the serenity"  lol

Some wildlife came in for a better look in the afternoon. Must have been checking out the ulti

Then the 28's came in for a feed. Taken right out of the hand.

but it was now time for more serious aspects of the evening:

firstly, gathering the wood

Then waiting for the coals to build

Monday came and we leisurely packed up. Did a couple of caches on the way out. Had a slight problem with the last. I thought it was time for the girl to step up to the mark and recover the cache and its contents (after I located it that is)

All was well and she was checking out the treasure's. Until....a blood curdling scream was let out. Checking the contents of the cache revealed a small scorpion about an inch long. Whilst mum provided the first aid back at the car, I emptied the cache of scorpion's and made my way back. She had a cold beer on her arm now as the venom was rising from the thumb where she was stung and her arm was swollen and throbbing with pain. As she was in agony, I made a dash for collie hospital to get some "better" pain relief than I had on board. They gave her something to drink and sent us on our way. As it was getting a bit late now, we stopped in town for lunch. Then 10min's after we left, she was zonked for most the trip home. When she woke, you wouldn't know what had happened.

So all in all, a good result and a great weekend, even if marred by some of life's little hiccups.

The Ultimate Caver Trailer

Well after the 6 week jaunt in the caver trailer, I decided I needed a different beast for those long trip, one night stop types of camps. I just sold my boat due to lack of use and the money was burning a hole in my pocket. As luck would have it, I found an 18 month old Ulti for sale locally. I went and had a look at it, the price seemed right, so another chapter begins........

Well, August 2012 and the deal is done.

First pics:

So I ended up swapping a keeled boat for a wheeled boat!

Lots of mods to do. First up, cutting a hole in the fiberglass to fit the evakool Arrgh!


Well maybe I'll do the distribution system first......

2 x 100 agm's, inline monitor, redarc bcdc1240 charger, 6 pot fuse box for distribution and an anderson for charging/solar.

I had a slight hiccup with the battery install. I kept all the oem stuff so it can be set up as original if ever needed. As such I had to remove a cable lug. A good plan was to bang a small flat bladed screwdriver in there to force open the crimp. Some light taps did jack. A heavy lunge and the cable lug went sideways and the screwdriver buried into my finger. As you could imagine, I shook my hand in agony, only to have my face, shirt and trailer sprayed with blood. The paving looked like the texas chain saw massacre had just taken place.

A few days later when I washed my hands, my bush stitches (bandaid) slipped off. Only then did I notice both an entry and an exit wound, opposed width wise on my finger. Bloody hell, I punched the driver all the way through.....

So lucky I still have full movement and feeling in the finger.

Let my bad judgement be a lesson for those that like to tinker.

And the ironic part of that....10 lugs cost me $7.00.

So for the sake of 70 cents, I very nearly suffered permanent injury.

What a tight arse I am sometimes


So after the bats were complete, I got even busier

Got some foam (that's bloody exe) as I decided to make my own bed infill. Some material from spotlight and a few hours on the sewing machine and all should be good.

Then I got busy performing surgery and fitting the fridge.

Just need to box in the compressor and I should be all set for the inaugural shakedown trip in a couple of weeks.


crap pic (had no control over the sun casting user shadows) but the hole is filled now. Sika'd in place, will screw and seal the outside at some stage.

Also had to cut the shield on my 9kg lpg to fit the locker box. I must say, cutting a partially filled 9kg...not very wise


Got the stomper fitted today. Almost ready for the maiden voyage


And then, the Ulti's cherry was popped


I thought I needed some light in the boot.

500mm of 5050 led strip, stuck to 12mm ali flat bar, clear heat shrink over the top of all that. Put an inline switch at the end of the strip  click here

The strip is sika'd to the boot roof, out of harms way. I pulled the cable through the existing split loom tubing from the battery box and routed it out of harms way. The photo doesn't do it justice. It lights all corners of the boot very well :)

Thinking I may just do the same for my internal cupboards


I placed an order for the full annex wall kit, so I can totally enclose the area under the main awning. Great for either insect protection or to create a wet weather area. Also a custom front awning, will come out the drawbar side about 2 meters and supported with poles and ropes. Will provide shade on that side of the camper and wet weather protection should I need to access the boot area. Not a cheap exercise


New canvas arrived on Thursday, just in time for a weekend jaunt.

Very happy. The custom front awning is just superb too.


End of blog November 2012. Will add to the blog as more mods continue