Sankey, the big plan !

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CAD design of the support structure and tent on top of the Sankey.

The Sankey should make a really good basis for our overland/camping trailer. The intention is that, after using it last year for extra storage space on a number of UK camping trips, for next year we will turn it into a standalone camping unit.

Rather than mounting our roof tent on top of the Sankey we decided to go for the trailer tent offering from the same manufacturer, Howling Moon. After living in the Roof Top Tent for 5 months without any issues we know it’s a quality product and, unlike RTTs there aren’t anywhere near as many manufacturers making dedicated trailer mounting tents.

The design of the tent means that the sleeping area (our bed) has to be a specific distance above the floor to give a clean drop to the floor. This is significantly higher than the top if the Sankey tub so the first task was to figure out a way of supporting the tent at the correct height. To help figure out how it would go together and help visualise it I started off with a CAD package to come up with a design. The tent needs to be offset to the Offside of the trailer as it drops down vertically to the ground at that side when opened.

The supporting bars will be covered with a custom made canvas to give a large covered area in the trailer with access panels through both sides and the back.

The fridge that used to live in the back of the 90 will now live in the trailer and the trailer will have it’s own 12v batteries. The trailer will also have electric hookup, allowing the batteries to be charged from the mains as well as providing mains sockets for other items when mains is available.

An automatic changeover on the 12v electrics will allow the fridge to be powered from the 90 auxiliary battery when it’s connected and has a suitable voltage level. This will allow us to extend the life of the trailer batteries as the 90 will charge up it’s auxiliary battery during day trips away form the camp site.

Our trips last year showed one failing of the Sankey – the lack of auto reverse brakes. The brakes themselves are so good that when reversing up the slightest incline the trailer stops the 90 in it’s tracks as the overrun brakes engage. The manual override for this works OK as long as you remember to put it in before you start reversing ! To resolve this I’ll be using a solenoid in the brake line, connected to the reversing lights. That should give a really effective auto reverse.

If we can get this completed for the camping season next year we’ll try it out on a few “local” UK trips before starting to make plans for any trips further afield.

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