"The Kombi"

Discussion in 'Members Rides' started by Nozza, Jul 14, 2018 at 9:49 PM.

  1. Nozza

    Nozza Member

    Messages:
    27
    Location:
    Melbourne
    Not the most original name, but, after a flirt with Kombis in 1981, I drove Toyotas for close on 35 years.
    Particularly liked Troop Carriers, so maybe the Kombi thing had been planted.
    This story is going to take a while.....

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    I used the Troopy, ex work car, to carry my paddle boards, had the bike in the back for when weather made paddling impossible.
    Which in Melbourne was often.
    Riding the bike one day, I spotted a beetle, and for some reason stopped to photograph it.

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    Maybe I actually liked Volkswagens?
    Never.
    The Troopy was annoying me, a lot of dead space behind the seats, very high to lift my cheap, heavy bike in to.
    Started to think about a van, obviously a Toyota HiAce. Hey, spell correct capitalised Ace.
    Checked out a couple, Couriers delivering stuff, decided I couldn't do it - it was a courier's van.
    Mercedes Vito or Sprinter?
    Spoke to Louise, my eldest daughter, she warned me "There is a fine line between what you are looking at and a People Mover, DO NOT cross it"
    Internet.
    VW.
    Transporter?
    Went to the local VW dealer. They said T5 vans were finished, 6 months wait for a T6.
    A T what?
    I wanted a Kombi.
    Could I test drive one?
    No, we haven't got one.
    "That must make it very hard to sell cars"
    Yes.
    "How about that one on the lot, can I drive it?"
    Grey / silver thing.
    "Here's the keys"
    Interest was quite low in helping me.
    Took the grey (maybe) Caravelle 9 seater for a drive.
    And loved it.
    Apart from it was very grey and German.
    And grey.
    And black.
    And German.
    I had wanted a new one, but this was half the price, and I couldn't have a new one for about 12 months.
    Bought it.
    Despite the Eastern Blok ambience of the interior.
    What happened to happy, colourful, smiley Kombis?
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    No roof racks for boards, I think I did a quick interior change from the Troopy.
    Removed the two back rows of seats, put the bike in.

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    And the fridge.
    And the water tank, the stove, and the coffee maker.
    That held me for a day or so.
    Bike riding is no longer my "thing".
    But back then it was important.

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    In to the workshop for some roof racks...

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    Those look rather tall!
    But we've got lots of them.
    Plenty of clearance, but we may need to re think.

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    Did not affect coffee production.

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    Swapped the roof racks....

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    Or maybe I hadn't by then.
    Van in to full paddleboarding / breakfast mothership mode.
    Leave my gear hanging in the van all day, no need to remove and dry.
    Fridge for milk and beer, stove, what more could a boy want?
    More than ten photos in a post, now you ask, but I'm falling foul of the rules everywhere.
    To be continued......
     

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  2. oldman

    oldman Super Moderator Staff Member

    Messages:
    7,774
    Location:
    Avalon Beach NSW
    Welcome to KC Nozza....
    Great to see you making your bus individual by your mods.
    Looks like a great setup that can be tweaked as required..
    One thing I’ve added is a portable 12v shower that plugs into any 12v outlet.
    Made by Primus, so it’s a quality product and I hang the shower head from the tailgate when it’s open.
    Certainly makes these cold mornings a lot more comfortable after a surf when you have a hot shower waiting in the car park! Gets a lot of envious looks when used as fellas are shivering getting out of wetties in the cold Westerly wind....I get about 4-5 min. of nice hot rinse....
    I’m interested in your coffee machine...what type/brand is it ?
    No restriction on the number of pics. mate.....that advice is purely for upload reasons only ;)
    Cheers,
    Mark
     
  3. Nozza

    Nozza Member

    Messages:
    27
    Location:
    Melbourne
    Coffee maker is a British ROK brand.
    You tamp the coffee in to a holder like the full on professional machines, that slots in above the cup.
    Water in the top then lift the arms and pump it through the grounds under high pressure.
    Makes the best coffee ever, particularly if you like it strong.
    Machines seem very expensive at first, but well made and robust.
    No signs of wear after 3 years daily use in the Kombi.
     
  4. Syncro27

    Syncro27 Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    5,734
    Location:
    Terrigal, NSW Central Coast
    Nice new truck you have and they are usually reliable.

    Those roof racks seem a little tall - I would be careful of low bridges with them and a paddle board on top of them.

    But the T5's are great and have loads of usable room.

    Troopys are a great off-road travel car but head clearance is poor inside and they waste loads of space with the long front engine bay - the T5 makes the engine much more compact - but still powerful and very economical.
     
    David H likes this.
  5. Nozza

    Nozza Member

    Messages:
    27
    Location:
    Melbourne
    The idea with the roof racks was that the tailgate would open without the window hitting boards on the roof, but we went a bit far.
    They have been swapped for lower legs, as in last photo now I look closely.
     
    Syncro27 likes this.
  6. oldman

    oldman Super Moderator Staff Member

    Messages:
    7,774
    Location:
    Avalon Beach NSW
    Thanks for the info.
    Just found one for $199.00. That’s not expensive, in fact it’s 10% of what I paid for our home machine.
    This will replace the clunky and wasteful pod machine that needs power that we take camping...
    Thanks again :cool:
    Cheers,
    Mark
     
  7. Nozza

    Nozza Member

    Messages:
    27
    Location:
    Melbourne
    Aghh, the pods.
    Hate them.
    Waste packaging, and from admittedly limited use, terrible coffee.
    You may find the ROK replaces the home machine too - it has for us
     
    oldman likes this.
  8. Barry

    Barry Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    2,395
    Location:
    Abbotsford NSW
    We use to take an Atomic camping and put it on the camp stove.

    That made pretty good coffee and froth milk.

    Now I drink black I just take one of those deli espresso stove top ones
     
  9. Nozza

    Nozza Member

    Messages:
    27
    Location:
    Melbourne
    Episode 2, September 2015. I may have missed a bit at the end of August.
    Just to confirm, the racks were swapped for shorter legs.

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    With enough length for a bed behind the remaining 2 seater, I made a lid for the bike side.

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    Looking at the photo, I've also made a water tank holder and a spot for the coffee maker.
    The Engel fridge has also been secured with a proper base.
    Clothes hanging racks are the top of a clothes airer from the hardware store, cable tied to carbon fibre poles (redundant surveying equipment) bolted behind / slug below the Caravelle grap handles each side for each row of seats.
    Found the JustKampers website - no affiliation or anything, ordered some bits.
    Swivel bases for the front seats and a table.

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    Table a bit bland and boring, single post leg a bit wobbly, but did the job.
    Got the mechanic to fit a dual battery system, and 240 volt inverter under the driver's seat.

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    Set up coming together now - I had a bed in place all the time, but could pick up my daughter from school and put her friends in.
    Social area for when camping.

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    Looking at that, I haven't fitted the table base socket yet - using the fold up stand.
    Another JustKampers purchase, a minimal tailgate tent.

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    Which thinking about it, I have never used.
    Must get it out again.
    Somewhere in there I bolted in a Thule bike carrier, that is meant to go on the roof, to stop the bike rampaging around.



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    A couple of weeks later I have added hangers for the ladder (needed to get paddleboards on the roof), and the Chair Of Champions.

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    Planning to expand the kitchen facilities, but not wanting to cook inside the van much due to smells, I have the kitchen at the back.
    The 240 volt inverter is only 1000 watt, so limited as to what it can power.
    Searched for the lowest power microwave I could find, 750 watts.

    Things seem to have just crashed a bit, and dinner is ready.
    To be continued...
     
    Syncro27 likes this.
  10. KahunaKombi

    KahunaKombi Super Moderator Staff Member

    Messages:
    17,973
    Location:
    Bracken Ridge, Qld
    A most interesting story & thanks for posting ;):D
     
  11. Nozza

    Nozza Member

    Messages:
    27
    Location:
    Melbourne
    Final bit of that episode, the low power microwave.
    Surprised there wasn't more immediately obvious, but most RV stuff seems to rely on the 240 volt hook up from a caravan park, where as I wanted to be independent.
    Found I needed to shop for the crappiest product available.
    Found a low power one at Betta Electrical, who I think folded shortly after.



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    Running on the inverter it takes about twice as long as standard to heat something, but works well.
    Three years later, after joggling around in the Van every day, still going strong.
    Another JustKampers purchase, fold out A pillar blinds.

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    These were tricky to fit, but have proved to be really good - much more convenient than the stick on thermo mats, if not quite as effective.
    To be continued......
     
    Last edited: Jul 15, 2018 at 9:20 PM
    Syncro27 likes this.
  12. Nozza

    Nozza Member

    Messages:
    27
    Location:
    Melbourne
    Still September 2015, first real trip.
    Drive to Byron Bay with Louise the daughter, Ann (The Wife One) and other daughter Bridget fly up to meet us.
    Ready to go.

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    My 12'6" board, 10'6" surf sup, two others in case the daughters decided to join me paddling.
    Picked up Louise from uni. in Hawthorn .
    Stopped at Holbrooke where the microwave cooked us pasta and bolognaise sauce for dinner.
    Second day Holbrooke to Byron, too far for one day, went on for ever.

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    Glad to see this sign.

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    Next morning early surf, back to the house, check out Byron with the girls.
    Creativity on a power box thing.

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    Found each morning and afternoon I had my own private park for attempted surf sessions.

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    Other Kombis of Byron, there for 6 nights, surfed morning and afternoon every day, wonderful.

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    Woops, ten photos, No No No, to be continued...
     
    Last edited: Jul 15, 2018 at 9:00 PM
  13. Nozza

    Nozza Member

    Messages:
    27
    Location:
    Melbourne
    More Kombis of Byron.

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    Thursday morning off home solo.

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    Byron to Goulburn way too far on my own.
    But once you pass the Hawksbury, and get involved in Sydney motorways, spots to stop disappear until you are out the other side.
    T5 handled everything with ease.
     
    Syncro27 likes this.
  14. Squidy

    Squidy Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    1,622
    Location:
    Eumundi
    Ha ha funny, the cream and white splitty is mine
     
    David H, oldman, cbus and 1 other person like this.
  15. Nozza

    Nozza Member

    Messages:
    27
    Location:
    Melbourne
    Ha! Brilliant.
    Lovely van.
     
  16. KahunaKombi

    KahunaKombi Super Moderator Staff Member

    Messages:
    17,973
    Location:
    Bracken Ridge, Qld
    Ah, knew I'd seen it before but couldn't recall who owned it :rolleyes:
     
  17. cbus

    cbus Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    10,665
    Location:
    sunshine coast
    Modern comfort in the true kombi tradition .:cool:
    Back in the day kombis were just a van and the next step up the wish list was a Bedford van with holden six.
    Plenty of room and grunt ;)
     
  18. Nozza

    Nozza Member

    Messages:
    27
    Location:
    Melbourne
    October 2015, back from Byron.
    Next addition was a towbar.

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    Also got my mechanic to fit a socket for the table leg.

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    And swivel bases for the front seats.

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    Some time in there I mounted the microwave above the fridge in the back, and added some plastic drawers.

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    Fully functional kitchen, sitting area, room for a bed.
    Bought a more substantial tailgate tent.

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    Test run in the front yard with the bed.

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    All good, comfortable, adaptable, and practical.
    To be continued.....
     
    Syncro27 likes this.
  19. oldman

    oldman Super Moderator Staff Member

    Messages:
    7,774
    Location:
    Avalon Beach NSW
    Love your taste in beverages too.... :cool:
    Coopers is my go to as well.
    I just took delivery of a ROK.....it’s awesome !
    One of my sons is an Industrial designer and he really appreciates the simplicity and functionality of it.
    Pulls a shot every bit as good as our home machine....
    Now I have a pod machine to dispose of....
    Look forward to catching up sometime.
    Cheers,
    Mark
     
  20. Syncro27

    Syncro27 Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    5,734
    Location:
    Terrigal, NSW Central Coast

    Nice Tailgate tent!

    Where did you purchase that?

    Your bed looks cozy.....zzzzz
     

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