Tag Archives: rv accessories

Switch it on and up it goes

One of the nice things about talking to people in the Motorhome industry is you get to hear about some neat new things coming on the market.

New to New Zealand is a new range of  Automatic Satellite systems and Tv’s from France called  Alden.

Frankie with the two new Alden receivers.

This is unique as the controls are all in the matching Alden TV’s. You simply turn on the TV and are prompted to fold out and tune the dish which it will then go ahead and do. It will also fold down when you turn it off or when you start the motor to move away.. all automagically!

on the left and the Portable one on the right

The price is amazing too..with the top of the range partly transparent (see photo) Evo 65 retailing for $2695 incl GST. If you buy it with an Alden 22in TV, the whole package is $3200 incl GST. This seems to me to be a pretty good deal given these are the bees knees in TV’s for Motorhomes.

Showing the  insides of the Aldens are all precision engineered.

Vantage RV are the agents and can fit them for you too.

It gets even Bigger

The Covi Show NZMCA Rally at Ellerslie just keeps on growing and this year, it looked great.

Click on on an image for Hi Res


Fiona was working on the Thursday so after a stop at Countdown in Takapuna, I tootled on my own to the Rally arriving around midday. As I entered the gate, there was a nice cheery exchange with Pete and then into the rally and once I was parked, I was right next to friends Nelson and Maree.

Another one comes in

I had just turned the engine off when in the doorway popped one of the volunteers and a friend from Ardmore Jim. Nice to see him too. There was a real buzz about the place. Fantastic.

The ladies in the Registration tent doing a great job.
L to R, Carol, Robyn, Debbie, Noeline and Shona.

Everywhere I went, it was seeing friendly faces and at the Registration tent, I got some gentle ribbing from Jill about leaving Fiona behind again.. all good fun 🙂


The Rally was well set out and it all went like clockwork but when you see it, its impressive. All those Motorhomes, Buses and Caravans.

After a happy time with Nelson next door, I had a stream of visitors to Rafe which was neat.

At lunchtime on the Friday, there were already over 300 vehicles of different sorts at the Rally.

Well done to the volunteers who put it together and nice to hear that it was a fun time for all. I gather that there were more than 500 Motorhomes over the weekend!

A Tune Up for Rafe’s Dome and Some Smart New Technology!

I had to pop in to Apollo TV to get my now nearly 4 year old Apollo dome serviced as I was having trouble getting some of the channels. Chris was very happy to sort it all out for me!

Click on an Image for Hi Res

All is revealed.. looking good

Ever since Prime moved, it has been really difficult to get and TV1 and TV2 suffered badly from rain fade where TV3 didn’t!

Chris checking over the Dome

After talking to both Chris and Duncan, I made and appointment and off I went to their office in Whnagaparoa. Nice guys that were only too happy to help me with the dome. It also turns out that my Dome cover has just about done its dash so there is a new one coming. $399 fitted. They get hammered by our high UV and get cracks in them. Mine has cracks around the screw holes on the edge so is all good for a wee while.

Chris got the ladder out and within 10 minutes or so, had it reset and pointing correctly at the Satellite fixing all the problems. Apparently my dome has a GPS in it to it knows where it is in the world and sets itself and the skew based on position and the signal strength as well.
Chris was telling me that when they first starting bringing in the Domes, they realised that the Dome Cover was much bigger than the Dish so they had the Dish made as large as they could and still fit under the Cover giving us TV watchers more signal!

I couldn’t get over the friendly customer service and speed at which they dealt with my wee problem.

The sample straight out of the Box

While talking to Chris, he was telling me about the new Avtex Sound Bar which fits on the bottom of the Avtex 19” TV and vastly improves its sound while only drawing .75A and they’re only $375 retail.

Chris with the first Sound Bar

Duncan set one up for me to have a listen and the sound is stunning. The power and sound is all sourced directly from the TV where they mount underneath. All very easy and tidy. They can also be used as a remote Bluetooth speaker for your cell phones too.

Their first shipment is arriving shortly and is already just about completely spoken for!

The sound bar fitted to a 19″ TV

Some of the new technology in this space is amazing with so much happening.. now to just win Lotto and I’ll be very happy 🙂

We’re just about there

As we’re renting the house out, we’re running down the pantry stocks in the house so provisioning the van for the Sth Island trip tomorrow was pretty straight forward… more a case of finding places to put stuff.

Madam in the Supermarket provisioning for the trip.
Madam in the Supermarket provisioning for the trip.

I spent a couple of hours yesterday pulling everything out of the cupboards and resetting where stuff goes in which cupboards… It’s amazing the space that was created for yep! …. more stuff

Under floor storage. There are three ares like this .. Very handy

We use big plastic storage bins for keeping things tidy in the garage and most of that was rejigged as well so it’s all looking good..  I’ve got that feeling we’re going to forget something important..

Wardrobe drawers.. A cheap way for extra storage

On a recent visit to the Plastic Box company, I discovered a neat way of making better use of our wardrobes. They have a hanging draw set that is designed to make a wardrobe into some shelving… To do both wardrobes was about $140 all up and it looks like it should work quite well..

Yippee .. Off tomorrow to meet some Motorhome friends at Raglan for a couple days, then Marton to meet some other Motorhome friends and then we travel in convoy to the South Island via WOW in Wellington.

I’ll try to post daily now we’re on the move. Keep your eyes peeled😃

The Ardmore haircut & Te Aroha

Saturday was a big day… starting with launching my old ex Whalechaser now being looked after by my sons after they’ve literally repainted the whole thing.
Click on the photos to enlarge

Rorqual being launched
Rorqual being launched

After parking her in the berth, we were off in Rafe to the Grandkids in Ardmore to babysit. I’m always very careful going up their 1/2 k odd long driveway as the trees and shrubs at the gateway lining it grow like weeds and reach out to try and scratch Rafe. Alex and Sarah had given them a good haircut so all good.

Our spot in the corner
Our spot in the corner
The Tree Haircut
The Tree Haircut

After a good night parked in the corner,  we woke up to the family tradition on Fathers Day of chocolate fish.. yum first thing in the morning 🙂
After a cup of coffee and breakfast,  we both felt that a hot swim might be the order of the day and neither of us being ready to go home,  so we thought a decent drive, Te Aroha hot pools, 120 odd K away.

Rather than go the way we always go, via Maugataroto, we thought we’d try down State Highway 1 on the motorway and turn off at Ohinewai through to Tahuna. What a great run too apart from taking a wrong turn and adding 15 minutes or so to the trip.. no harm done.
Checking in to the Te Aroha Holiday Park, just on the South Side of the Town itself was easy. $34 for the two of us with the NZMCA discount.. what a classic place. All the cabins are ex workingmens huts. In really good nick too.

Click on the photos to Enlarge

Reading through Rankers and Wikicamps, some of the comments are awful and the place didn’t deserve the bad rap that it had. One of the comments was that the hot pools didn’t have any water in them, .. my first question when I checked in .. after that it was all good.
There was a really nice pool complex too. The pools weren’t ready until after 6 and it was dark by then so no photos.
Huge parking spaces and nicely separated off by hedges and plants. Well placed and easy to get to Dump Station too. A nice place to stay.

Easy Clothesline

Ready for the towels
Ready for the towels
Ready for the road
Ready for the road

Today I installed a clever Fiamma clothesline that integrates with the bike rack we had installed a week or so ago. The nice part about it is it stays on the back, whether you’ve got bikes or not. It simply unfolds.

Perfect for the towels after a shower or the tea towels and flips out in seconds.