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 > Getting More Serious About Shipping Truck Camper to Europe

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HadEnough

Traveling. Always.

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Posted: 06/12/19 05:48pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

time2roll wrote:

Have you made preparations on how to plug in your RV?


If I have to I’ll use a transformer. However, the truck camper is fully self sufficient on power using solar and propane.

I only need electricity for an air-conditioner and a microwave if we choose to use them. It has a built in propane generator for those times if the area is conducive to running it.

Has an Onan 2500 LP generator.

The difficult part would be if the microwave goes and we need a new one. Or the hair dryer. Otherwise, we don't use any power. We are off grid.

wanderingbob

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Posted: 06/12/19 06:55pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

When I was in Europe only butane was available , can propane be had now ?

zcookiemonstar

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Posted: 06/12/19 10:11pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I know nothing about any of this but is a interesting thread to follow. I would think that all the rules change as you go from country to country.

joerg68

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Posted: 06/13/19 12:35am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

LPG (or "Camping-gas") for camping is a mess here in Europe. Lots of different bottles and connectors that vary by country. You are not legally allowed to fill your own bottles, either. The euro bottle sizes do not fit inside the gas compartment of a US RV. To top it all off, there is the general sentiment that the local system is much better and safer...
Technically, LPG is available at many gas stations, because many cars are using it. But not in all european countries, so you need read up on that beforehand. Provided you brought the correct set of adapters, you _can_ fill your US bottles at these pumps, no problem. And cheaply, too. You may run into the odd attendant who informs you that what you are doing is ver-bo-ten. Some of them may take pity and fill the bottle for you. Some may chase you away.

LPG is always a mixture of propane and butane here. The pre-filled bottles in the more southern regions can come with pure butane. They will still work fine as long as temps don't fall below freezing (butane does not evaporate below around 30F).

Another thing you probable need to be aware of is the size and weight of your rig.
It is too high for a number of underpasses in the back country and in old villages. You need to be alert and keep an eye on the signage.
And you weigh more than 3.5 metric tonnes. That is a magic legal border in Europe above which a number of regulations change. In daily life you will note that a number of small roads and brigdes are blocked by signs that say "3,5 t". And the way road tolls are calculated (another mess, as every country has its own way of doing it) changes. Obviously, tolls for your big truck are more expensive, too.


2014 Ford F350 XLT 6.2 SCLB + 2017 Northstar Arrow


HadEnough

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Posted: 06/13/19 01:53am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

My setup is 3.56 Metric tonnes. Do they weigh you? Or look at the registration?

I'm extremely close to being under the limit.

I need 3.9 meters height to clear overhead obstacles. It's an issue all over the world so I'm pretty used to turning around when I get to a low bridge. There are many height restricted routes I can't use in the States and plenty of surprise low bridges I need to stop at and turn around.

I’ve often wondered why people don’t just drop the suspension on trucks when putting a truck camper on. I mean, many of us don’t go off road with them. Why have all that height?

[image]

Something like this makes a lot more sense than a lifted up truck.

I'm 2.46 meters in width also, which seems a little larger than standard European Motorhomes/Caravans

joerg68

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Posted: 06/13/19 02:39am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

The 3.5 tons refer to the GVWR of the vehicle, not the actual weight (presuming you are not overloaded).
With your camper loaded, you sure are at 5+ tons actual weight. What is the GVWR of the truck? 14k?
They do not normally weigh you in most countries, with the exception of Austria maybe. Even they may shy away from the bureaucratic hassle in your case, but I would not count on it.
But it is getting more common.

The general height of all underpasses is at least 4.0 meters, if they are lower, they will have signage up. It is up to you how soon you notice. And some of these are in places where you can not turn the truck around and you may have to backtrack a bit.

The maximum allowable vehicle width in Europe for a normal vehicle is 2.55m - you are close to that, possibly over when you measure from the outer edges of your jack bases. It can be challenging. Rural roads are often very narrow, one lane. In some places walled in with stone walls. In most others, there are ditches or soft shoulders, so you need to be very careful. You will sometimes wish you had taken off your jacks.Main roads will never be an issue. If a heavy truck can get there, so can you.

You need to be aware that a duallie will not be fun in some places due to the wide rear track and the overall size, and that you may have to compromise on the roads you take (truck route vs. back country). Be prepared to occupy four spaces in the parking lot of the supermarket ;-)

Eta: and nowadays many parking lots have height restrictions (as in physical bars over the entrance) of varying height, to either deter overnighting truck drivers or traveling folk. But even a rented euro camper will be too high for those.

* This post was edited 06/13/19 04:34am by joerg68 *

valhalla360

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Posted: 06/13/19 05:44am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

zcookiemonstar wrote:

I know nothing about any of this but is a interesting thread to follow. I would think that all the rules change as you go from country to country.


Google schengen area. Most of mainland Europe has been standardized for visa and import rules.

Not 100% but fairly consistent.


Tammy & Mike
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valhalla360

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Posted: 06/13/19 05:49am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

HadEnough wrote:


Wow. That’s very comprehensive information. Thank you. I guess I will have to look into that residency trigger. Make sure I don’t run into that. However, it probably makes the most sense for me to just stay on the same immigration rules as my girlfriend. It’s not like we are going to be going our separate ways when one triggers and the other doesn’t.

Truthfully, we are traveling around this continent and that one to see where we might want to live eventually. Getting a good look at everything.


Be careful with dual citizenship. ..you may or may not have a choice on residency.

You might be able to fly under the radar but if something happens and they decide to check, they can track where you have been.

Another thing, if you are operating under your US drivers license, get the international drivers permit...but demand they check the box for over 3500kg. Unlike the states, private use doesn't change the need for a heavy weight endorsement...we know a few who have been checked.

HadEnough

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Posted: 06/13/19 06:47am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

joerg68 wrote:

The 3.5 tons refer to the GVWR of the vehicle, not the actual weight (presuming you are not overloaded).
With your camper loaded, you sure are at 5+ tons actual weight. What is the GVWR of the truck? 14k?
They do not normally weigh you in most countries, with the exception of Austria maybe. Even they may shy away from the bureaucratic hassle in your case, but I would not count on it.
But it is getting more common.

The general height of all underpasses is at least 4.0 meters, if they are lower, they will have signage up. It is up to you how soon you notice. And some of these are in places where you can not turn the truck around and you may have to backtrack a bit.

The maximum allowable vehicle width in Europe for a normal vehicle is 2.55m - you are close to that, possibly over when you measure from the outer edges of your jack bases. It can be challenging. Rural roads are often very narrow, one lane. In some places walled in with stone walls. In most others, there are ditches or soft shoulders, so you need to be very careful. You will sometimes wish you had taken off your jacks.Main roads will never be an issue. If a heavy truck can get there, so can you.

You need to be aware that a duallie will not be fun in some places due to the wide rear track and the overall size, and that you may have to compromise on the roads you take (truck route vs. back country). Be prepared to occupy four spaces in the parking lot of the supermarket ;-)

Eta: and nowadays many parking lots have height restrictions (as in physical bars over the entrance) of varying height, to either deter overnighting truck drivers or traveling folk. But even a rented euro camper will be too high for those.



Ah... I see. I'm 3.9 metric tonnes on the GVWR. (8800 lbs) It's a 2500 model RAM, not a dually.

Curb weight plus truck camper dry weight is 7858 lbs without water in it. Or ... 3.56 metic tonnes.

2.46 meters is the absolute maximum width of the Arctic Fox model I have. I believe that includes Jack stands. May have to measure rather than look it up online.

It doesn’t sound all that different from where I drive now. I encounter some pretty tight areas. Mostly I try to just stay on the bigger main roads in the suburbs. But I take this thing into some seriously dense cities sometimes. Mission district in San Francisco, Williamsburg Brooklyn, Montreal, Toronto, South Beach in Miami, Key West. I just keep the slide in and put it in a single parking spot. It overhangs by less than 1 m. And the truck camper itself overhangs the bed of the truck by about that amount. So I can back it in and put the truck camper over the grass or something. Pulling the truck all the way back in until it is lined up with other cars. But, the truck camper it’s self hangs over the back of the parking space into the grass. It seems to work very well here.

joerg68

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Posted: 06/13/19 07:24am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

It is not an issue with an SRW truck 99.98% of the time.
Old villages can be a challenge.
Small backroads, too.
And campground access roads due to height and width - because strangely, many are so overgrown that you wonder how the other rigs got there in the first place.
Downtown traffic is harmless since the roads are used by trucks all the time. Parking garages are out, anyway.
I can not speak for all european countries, obviously.
Probably the biggest "issues" are low old railroad bridges or underpasses that you failed to see in time, and now you must backtrack and find another route. Specialized GPS systems for trucks and RVs exist that should help you avoid these.

But you must realize that technical support is pretty thin for these trucks. Not many shops can work at them. Get good roadside assistance in case you need to be towed. Ensure in the contract that they realize the dimensions of your rig. Most here exclude anything above 3.20m height.

Nobody will probably touch your camper if something needs to be fixed. At least that is my personal experience. You are probably used to do most repairs yourself anyway ;-)

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