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I bought a big and joined the circus.


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I am now sitting, all alone, on Ealing common which is the next site. Very unusual to be at the new site this early but it turns out that we had to have temporary road way put down because if it rains it will turn into a quagmire and the deal from the company that laid it was that somebody had to be there as security. Considering it all came on the back of 2 rigids with trailers and were placed using a hiab I'm not sure how you could steal it. So I'm here till Sunday guarding a temporary roadway. A bit bizarre. Had to come through a bit of LEZ to get here but there is a way to avoid paying which I can't put on a public forum. 

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Remember they put a bunch of that down at Goodwood a few years back, seemed in quite a few areas to be causing more headaches than it was solving as it was just so ridiculously slippery when it was wet.  I distinctly remember very nearly ending up on my backside at several points in the day.

Someone messed up a turn with a trailer and managed to slice through two tyres on the edge of one of the panels too.

Hopefully it's better suited to your needs here!

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Be very careful driving anything heavy over that stuff: I ended up in a whole world of trouble driving a loaded 26t water bowser on it at one festival a few years ago; booted the truck up a slippery uphill section, swung the nose round to reverse into the tank farm, and a section had kicked up (unknown to me) and lodged between the two back axles. Completely stuck. Couldn't go forwards or backwards. An hour of violence and butchery with a Loadall, big hammers, scaffold pole and wrecking bars got me out, but I wouldn't do it a second time! Ever after, I periodically checked any iffy looking joints and reported them to the contractors. Or just twatted it flat with a sledgehammer.

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  • 3 months later...

Look out! thread resurrection. It's been a while and some things have happened. 

Ealing was where we were and I ended up driving various shite for 22 out of 24 hours. Some stuff had to go to Norwich and some to Stratford on Avon. I can't remember how many trips I did but the last one was to hook the shower unit up, the last thing left, and take it to Norwich. Problem was that a hitch had broken on something else so the hitch on the shower unit was robbed and I had to put it back on when getting it. All very well but there is a cylinder that works the brakes and you have to push it back, with a fair bit of effort, to get a bolt through before it pops back. A three handed job. Must have pissed around for about an hour with it and I was tired and wanted to Gtf out of there and go to bed. 

It would have been about 4pm when I got away and got on to the M25. Driving at truck speed it was like being in a truck race and at that time, and pissing it down, it was the most horrendous drive I've had for a very long time and something I never want to do again. Going to Norwich there is a a section of dual carriageway where they have been road working for a few years from what I could make out and it's one lane a side with a metre, or so, high wall on either  side of the lane which in a truck gives you about a foot and a half, max, on each side and when it's dark and raining the concentration level is off the scale. 

I think I mentioned a possibility of going to Holland for a month. Well I ended up going but not staying which was a bit disappointing. Reason was there was not enough for me to do for 4 weeks there.  I got asked a few times last year, by the public, if we went in convoy from one site to the next to which the answer was naa, once a load is ready it's fuck off time. Well we did make a convoy when leaving Norwich to go to Harwich at 4 in the morning. I tell you it was a sight to see with 15 trucks all hauling a trailer. or two. The length of a Peterbilt, extra long trailer then a draw bar shop unit behind is fuckin looooooong. Flashing lights everywhere. Behind the trucks came 12 other smaller vehicles pulling caravans and stuff. I don't know how long it all was but I was 7th in line and I never saw the back end. There was a slightly amusing event on the way to Harwich. Leading the convoy, rubber duck and ten four good buddy, was Elaine who was driving her artic fifth wheeler. We came to a fairly large roundabout and she missed the exit so continued round and therefore met the convoy coming onto it. Caused a bit of havoc for a bit. Luckily little traffic around at that time. Got to Harwich all at once which caused a blockage getting into the port which the port bods didn't seem to know what to do about a sudden influx of circus shite. Much hilarity ensued as they ran about trying to sort it all out. Then came the customs. When you go abroad with equipment you have to list EVERYTHING so when you come back they can check if you have more than you went with and if you have it's get yer wallet out time.  Well, as you can imagine we had shite loads of stuff so therefore shit loads of papers for the nice customs man who was suddenly deluged in papers and us giving it loads of 'what about this one' and 'I've got all these do you want them all?'. 'Where do I sign this' and 'do I have to sign them all' etc. I think he took a look at all of us crammed into his little office waving papers and in about 5 different languages at him and thought fuck this get the stamp out and get rid of them. Going Freight is all right though. You get a cabin with shower, bog and telly and, depending on ferry time, a breakfast and a meal an hour before landing in the truckers lounge. Then it was rubber duck time in Holland up to Beverwijk near the Dam. I'd forgotten that the roads in the Netherlands are smooooooooth with not a pothole to be seen. Got put up in a bit of a swish, for me, hotel near Schipol called  The Plaza where it was a eats/a few beers and bed. Next morning, early, flight to Brum and taxi home. So that was that.

On the tenth of this month it was taxi to Brum airport and back to Schipol where it was another good hotel called the Marquette, then the minibus arrived to take us to the pub which happened to have a coffee shop next door. When in Rome etc. Got slightly blitzed but when a lock in in the bar was mentioned I declined the offer being an old woos. A good night. Next morning it was all rev up and convoy, 10 4, to Den Haag. I like convoys and let's be honest it's  rare to be involved in one never mind two. We got out of Harwich about 7/8 in the evening so more traffic around which must have pissed off anybody trying to get past. This time I was the last in line so could see the traffic building up behind and it was a lot. A convoy like that doesn't travel very quickly, about 40 mph. Dropped everything in Norwich and then it was a lift back to Brum and a taxi home. 

Looks like the season starts at Easter and finishes end October. Don't know about doing updates this season as it will be very similar to the last one but if anything different happens I'll pop something up. Might be going to the Stratford yard next month to do some maintenance/repairs on stuff before the season starts.

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  • 1 month later...

Update time. New season starts in Richmond or Twickenham, can't remember, the first week of April. The other dates have yet to be announced or rather I haven't been told yet. I don't know if I'll do a write up as I did last season because a lot will be a bit repetitive.

Off grid electric shite. As I mentioned, I think, I spent a fair chunk of my circus dosh on a lithium set up. Battery, 46ah, £1700, Invertor/charger, 3000w, £600ish, DC/DC charger, £200, cables, isolators, fuses, etc, probably a couple of hundred so in total about the 3 grand mark. It's a fair chunk to lay out but this should see me good for ten years at least. Battery warranty 10 years. I'll be 80 then, and will I still be able to live like this, then? Who knows. It took me a few weeks to get my head around how it all went together although there were set backs. I had to get the battery back to the supplier to have a new Battery Management System put in. Chinese innit. That set me back a couple of weeks and in the worst weather when I could really have done with it, If only to be able to lie in bed and hit the heater remote and go back to sleep for an hour which I can now do and is a luxury in my world. I could run an electric blanket but I feel that that is a bit too decadent. A full battery will last me 5/6 days with no sunshine. At the moment a full days sunshine, with 2 x260w solar panels, get's me 20% battery fill which is good for 2/3 days no sun. Panels give me about 30 amps an hour but can go up to 40. The other problem was that it seems the invertor/charger is rather hertz sensitive and a generators hertz level has to be buggered about with to get it right which can take a few attempts. Still, all good now.

A couple of pics. I know it looks a bit messy but it's under the dinette seat and therefore out of sight and it all works which is fine with me. The battery is in the cupboard next door.



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  • 2 weeks later...

I thought I'd keep my goings on on this thread rather than start another. 

Well, I have taken control of the Mazda 323 estate I mentioned somewhere. It's fairly well known on here having been to the FoTu in 2021 when Hubnut  did a bit on it. I thought he did a review but, if he did, I can't find it. 

Collection pic.


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As I am a tek twat I don't know how to put text after a pic.

There is a fair difference between an 80's Pug and a 90's Maz. Quite a few things I've never had on a car/van  before. Such as lecky windows, adjustable intermittent wipers, rear wipe wash, power steering, central locking, remote fuel door and, probably, other things I haven't found yet. Such luxury. It's a really nice wagon with a new Mot, couple of advisories, 4 new Toyo's and serviced. Suits me sir. What I find hard to believe is the bodywork on it. I don't think I've ever seen a 29 year old car with absolutely no rust bubbles on the wheel arches, the only bit is on the rear door and you have to look hard to see it. Below a pic of one, all the same, and a couple of other pics of it as I know we all like pictures. Oh, and one of my fwend in the passenger seat.





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Glad to see the latest update from the world of circus. I've been to the circus myself this week, a year later than planned as they came last year but I got sick that week and couldn't go. These guys really do run some impressive rigs: there are four American units and half a dozen DAFs, all towing both an artic trailer and a drawbar. I wish I'd seen them arriving as I bet it was a real challenge getting in here through the tight gateway (Campbell Park, Milton Keynes if anyone knows it).

Look at this monster. US unit with 40ft artic trailer (already over length) and then a twin-axle drawbar behind that!



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20 hours ago, puddlethumper said:

I'd like to give a HUGE shout out to @Heikin Matsuda and his Dad at DFTR Automotive who did me a deal I couldn't refuse. Top blokes, would recommend if you are in the West Mids. As used by @dollywobbler and others of this parish.

Cheers! Im just glad its gone to a good home. I supose its now became a trailer queen..... sort of 😂

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Thought I'd let you rabble know a bit about my new chariot. I am suitably impressed with this Mazzer estate. Mind you going from a base 305 van to this is, to me, a huge jump into the modern* world of motoring. There are quite a number of firsts for me as far as cars go. Lecky windows, something that everyone probably has. They're ok although Armstrong ones rarely fail. Remote for the fuel flap and a switch inside to lock/unlock the back door. What decadence! Puddle lights in the door so can see if it's wet ? What do you do if it is wet? move to a different spot and hope it hasn't a puddle? Luckily it doesn't come with a logo which I think is a bit tacky. The seat goes up and down a bit and has a bit of lumbar support as well. I would say that it's not as comfy as the one in the van which was a squidgy French thing. Adjustable steering column and in that there is a ballock warmer/cooler. Yes, it has a vent aimed at your bollox for those wintery days where you might have chilly bits or the summer when they might overheat. Sheeeeer luxuree.  Adjustable intermittent wipers. They're great, and a rear wash wipe. Never had either before. A rev counter. I may have had one on a Ventora back in the 70's so this might be a second time. I'll get a night pic of the dash as it's lovely and clear and orange/red illumination. Power assisted steering ? Nope, don't ever remember having that either. My arms will become thin and flabby. Full service history. That's about it for the 'I've never had' stuff.

It drives nicely, good acceleration and braking and loads of room in the back. I doubt the back seats will ever get used. It's not something that stands out like the van, a bit bland. It's a 29 year old an car which will do me just fine. It's had underneath treatment a couple of years ago so I'm going to get it redone later in the year to fend off the metal worm and hopefully it will do me for a good few years. With only 82,000 on the clock it should do. Etched windows, dealer sticker and plates and I believe, but haven't found yet, that the wheel trims are etched as well. Blimey ! Now some pics. Yes, it needs a wash.









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