HELLO + WELCOME as always.
We are 80 or so days into the African leg of the expedition and all is going well. We started this life changer on the 22nd of March 2013. The car has been running smoothly (well apart from the overheating problems), we are both healthy and we are still engaged.
It’s G here today behind the keyboard and I’m answering one of the big questions that we get asked about our rig.
We often get asked if we are happy with our set-up or if there is anything we would change. Below are a few things that we absolutely love about our set-up, be it a major conversion or some Garry Good Gear.
WE LOVE OUR POP TOP CONVERSION
After some careful consideration (24-hrs) we decided to convert from a roof top tent to a custom designed Pop-Top. We haven’t looked back since and the pop-top conversion (other than the few problems we have had with it) has been by far the BEST thing we have done to our rig. It provides us with an indoor space and is easily set up and taken down. It allows us to go from the comfort of our bed to the drivers seat in seconds and is perfect in all weather. We really think it’s the best solution for long-term overland travel.
WE LOVE OUR REDARC SOLAR PANELS
We learnt a lot in the six months we spent driving throughout Oz. One of my major gripes was not having a means of charging the batteries when away from the car. So the first thing we did before shipping the rig over to Africa was install a fixed REDARC 80W Solar Panel to the roof. Now we can leave the car for days without worry of draining the auxiliary battery.
^ Our new roof-top solar panel
The next issue was to find shade in the hot African sun while still maintaining the charge to the battery. This has also been sorted by the guys at REDARC in the form of a lightweight compact REDARC 108W Amorphous Folding Solar Panel. I installed an Anderson plug on the front bull bar and now have the ability to run a six meter cable away from the shaded car to this beautiful piece of kit. Yeah I like garry good gear.
^ Troopy’s loving that charge from the solar panels
WE LOVE OUR DRIFTA STORAGE SYSTEM + KITCHEN DRAWER
Kirst has completed an overland trip before from Cape Town to Rwanda and knew all too well the importance of having things in their place. That is why we sought out the best possible solution available and headed to a small country town North of Sydney to get it done.
I’m talking about DRIFTA, of course. We use our DRIFTA set up every single day and it has not let us down. Getting our set-up right has been a major win for us… and I write that with a smile on my face because we say nearly every day of the week “Aaah I love this set up”. From the kitchen drawer to the cupboards and storage drawers – we know we got it right, for us
^ Our clothes are kept in the top two shelves of the big cupboard on the left
^ Our kitchen, pantry and cooker all nice and tidy in one drawer
OUR PICO CHAIRS KEEP US COMFY
We needed a solution for our seating arrangements while camping and they needed to fit into our well organised rear living area of the Troopy. We checked out all the chairs at every 4×4 show we went to and couldn’t commit to any.
We came across a chair from Hannibal Safari but didn’t know what it was until we took off the case and started unfolding what I now know as the Pico Chair. I had a wry smile on my face because I have never liked the ‘directors style’ type of camp chair… until now. They have done their job around Oz and now that we are in Africa they are packed away so well that people often ask us where our chairs are. The only thing you need to do with this chair is lubricate the moving parts once in a while with a silicone spray or with some vaso. Oh, and keep them away from the camp fire’s burning embers. We learnt that one the hard way.
^ PICO Chair riverside
^ The chair in an open and closed position. Brilliant!
A GOOD QUALITY HEAD TORCH IS A MUST
We have two high quality Princeton Tec head torches. We use these daily and they make life so much easier when you have to make a midnight dunny run after too many brewskies the evening before. They also have the red light option which makes it good for map reading at night or for keeping the bugs away from you.
^ Princeton Tec Head Torch
That is a brief look at some of the Gary Good Gear that keeps us happy on the road. I hope I’ve answered some of your questions.
Keep an eye on the blog for my next post on what we didn’t like and what we have since changed.
As always thanks for being here guys. We love reading your thoughts and comments in the box below.
Keep ‘em coming and if there is anything you would like to know about us or the rig give us a shout it in the comments below or hit us up on Facey.