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Aircooled Trakka T3

Discussion in 'T3 & T4 Tech Help Clinic' started by Major Tom, Jan 18, 2016.

  1. Major Tom

    Major Tom Member

    Messages:
    32
    Location:
    Mornington Peninsula, VIC
    Hi fellow vanners!

    I'm new to the forum and also relatively new to working on / owning Volkswagens.

    I've just done (most of) a top end rebuild on an '85 Transporter which I'm soon selling to pay for the '82 Trakka I just bought which is currently in transit from QLD to VIC.

    To fellow Trakka owners and aircooled owners;

    • What should I know about the Trakka setup?
    • What differs between the air cooled motors and water cooled motors (other than the obvious cooling method)?
    • What, if any, issues will I run into with registration regarding authorisation for seating on the rock n roll bed and certification for the gas appliances?
    • Is the fridge solely 12v/240v or can it run on gas?

    Thank you all,

    Tom

    $_20 (9).JPG
     
  2. Grantus

    Grantus Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    16,863
    Location:
    Southern ACT
    I have no experience with Trakka campers or aircooled T3's.......... but I just wanted to say:

    Welcome to the Kombi Club! :)



    Take your protein pills and put your helmet on.......and enjoy the ride. ;)
     
  3. Kombi Dad

    Kombi Dad Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    2,433
    Location:
    Bungendore, NSW
    Welcome to the club. I have no experience with the Trakka as my '82 camper is a Camping Industries conversion. The fridge fitted was 12V / 240V only, no gas. This meant I could only use it in a powered site on 240V or whilst driving 12V. I removed the fridge and replaced it with a Waeco portable fridge. I also installed a second battery which is charged through a Redarc isolator whilst driving and portable solar panels when camped. Worked extremely well.

    My experience with both air and water-cooled is that the latter has more power for cruising. I tow a trailer (for the past ten years) when I am out and about and have not experienced any issues. The air-cooled seemed to like about 95 kmh. The current '89 water-cooled seems to travel at the speed limit without issues. The reason for the trailer is that the clutter (camping table, chairs, portable toilet etc.) from the camper floor could be stored in the trailer and the bed left made up. This was great for an overnight stop.

    My experience with getting authorisation for the bed / seat was simple. I had to get an engineer's certificate for the bed / seat, the fridge mounts and rear seat belts. Even though when I purchased it, it was registered in the ACT and had previously been registered in NSW, I had to get the certificate to get it registered again in NSW.

    Ian
     
  4. syncro

    syncro Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    9,640
    Location:
    Southern Highlands
    You really need to try this for yourself as the members here can only tell you what happened to them. It is up to the individual inspector whether he wants an engineer's report. It really shouldn't as it was approved previously it should comply now. (except for gas, electricity and fire extinguishers)

    Have a look under the steering column for any approvals (near the compliance plate).
     
  5. AC-T3

    AC-T3 Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    1,011
    Location:
    Woy Woy
    Welcome to the world of air cooled volksies. I have an '82 Trakka and have nearly lost count of the years and miles (oops km) put on it as a daily driver belting up and down the F3 at 110 kph for work and those lazy slower paced weekends away. Have other newer and current generation cars in the fleet, but this is my drive, my bus and I just love it. As said above, take it to an rego joint and see where your story ends. Just about every interstate rego change has it's own individual issues, so good luck and hope it all goes well. As for your other questions, many say the Trakka is a disaster for roof rust and they should be avoided Well all OZ cut-roof campers are so why pick on Trakka). Check in and under the gutters, windscreen and tail gate area for any hint of rust or discolouration, then keep a watching brief. The Trakka roof give so much extra head space inside - I don't know how those with the other style cope! I'm very happy with mine. Air vs water cooled: go ask the Germans how the air cooled volksies performed in WW2 from the frozen tundra to the boiling deserts of North Africa, then ask the Allied Armies what their top war prize was - the humble air cooled volksie for it just went, and went and went. That still applies today so long as it it set up right, maintained right and treated right. So do find a good air cooled VW specialist to help keep it alive, and do be religious with oil and filter changers every 5,000km, points and condenser at 10,000 and plugs and air filter at 20,000km. The stock air cooled has a tad less power than that the water coolers, so depending on weight carried can cruise at anything from 95 to 110kph day in day out. You'll find the sweet spot for your van once you get to know it and just as important, your bus gets to know you.

    And Grantus' reference to David Bowie is just all so true.
     
  6. syncro

    syncro Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    9,640
    Location:
    Southern Highlands
    Air cooled T3s
    + Easy to work on
    +Many mechanics know about them
    +Less things to go wrong
    +Engine out in about 15 minutes
    -Poor fuel economy
    -Very slow
    -Not very common so some bits are hard to get. (not the engine internals)
     
  7. cbus

    cbus Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    12,559
    Location:
    sunshine coast
    reply as in RH column above
     
  8. Kombi Dad

    Kombi Dad Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    2,433
    Location:
    Bungendore, NSW
    I must admit that the '82 camper did a great service as I put the best part of 300,000 km on it travelling to all parts of Australia without any major issues. As long as you maintain it well you should not have issues with it. My son now has the camper and I would assume that he will put many more kms on it. I now use the '89 Synchro Caravelle as my main kombi transport. The '82 and the '89 are very different vehicles. I must be getting old as I prefer the '89 as it comes standard with power steering etc. It is really a great vehicle for our weekends away.

    Ian
     
  9. Major Tom

    Major Tom Member

    Messages:
    32
    Location:
    Mornington Peninsula, VIC
    You're all super, thank you very much!! Photos to follow when the vehicle gets to me.

    Considering the rust issue mentioned by AC-T3, would it be wise to remove the pop top (if possible?) and drown the whole area with rust inhibitor? The seller tells me he has receipts for a professional rust treatment (cut out and new metal welded in) for under the windscreen, but that its otherwise rust free.

    Also, how much could I expect to pay for the engineers certificates in Melbourne? Do I need to find someone qualified in LPG to certify the stove also? I'm really not keen on those ugly boxes for the LPG tanks which require a hole to be cut in the side of the van.

    Cheers,

    Tom
     
  10. syncro

    syncro Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    9,640
    Location:
    Southern Highlands
    How long is a piece of string?

    You may need a licenced gasfitter to approve it, not an LPG person. Wait until you see what the registration inspector says.

    It might pass without doing anything or you may have a lot of problems. You will not know until you try.
     
  11. peace_fam

    peace_fam Member

    Messages:
    247
    Location:
    Mount Martha
    I have the 12v/240v fridge in my Trakka and installed a 75am/h battery under the passenger seat. Not ideal fit as it restrict how far back the seat can go, but my fridge runs off that and I can go 3-4 days without any need to charge.

    My gas bottle is in a removable cupboard behind the passenger seat so the cupboard came out for regn. I managed to get it registered as 4 seater as the lovely lady at Vic Road backtracked NSW regn from 15 years earlier showing it had once been registered as a 4 seater so she said that was good enough for her
     
  12. Major Tom

    Major Tom Member

    Messages:
    32
    Location:
    Mornington Peninsula, VIC

    Thats awesome info, thank you! I'm thinking about installing a 110AH under the rock n roll bed.

    Never thought about removing that unit for the registration, great idea! Mine has a mod plate for QLD certifying it as a 4 seater so hopefully thats enough for them too...time will tell!

    I noticed it says on here you're from Mt Martha?! I live in Mornington! We're practically neighbours!
     

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