Remote Area Touring Rig For Sale

Hi to our regular readers & to those of you are here for the first time to see our rig for sale.

The time has come. An end, but also a new beginning. Sad & exciting at the same time. We are still not quite ready to reveal what we are replacing our trusted combination with, but we don’t think it will be long now.

We have a smaller ‘runaround’ car for use whilst at a home. A 2013 Suzuki Vitara with a genuine (never been flat towed) 78,000km on the clock, …….  so it’s time to put up our beloved Patrol & Tvan  for sale. 

Below is the ad we will circulate & below that is further info to supplement & expand upon what could not be fitted into a single page ad, that those reading the ad have been directed to.

I hope that the my descriptions of the combined set up & how we have used them together, which has suited us so well, is of interest to our regular readers as well as to those of you who have found your way here with a potential purchasing interest. To those of you who are new to the blog please feel free to have a good look around the rest of the site as there is much to read about our travels to whet your adventurous appetites. 


Complete Remote Area Touring Package ready to & go, comprising a Nissan Patrol based camper & Tvan. Asking Price is $72,000 ONO for everything.  However Patrol & Tvan can be sold separately ($50,000 & $26,000), if required. 

Please Note: This is not your average 4wd + camper combo and  we definitely  consider that the whole is greater than the sum of the parts & well worthy your consideration. 


Embark on your adventures to the remotest parts of Australia, built for the full-time adventurer couple seeking the ultimate off road & off grid experiences. This vehicle owned by experienced travellers is set up to enable extended periods between need to resupply & it is this plus it’s 4wd capability & legendary reliability, which provides a travel experience normally reserved for much larger, heavier & more expensive ‘expedition trucks’. 

Key Features

  • 4×4 capability: The reliability & capability of the diesel 4.2 litre Nissan Patrol motor is highly regarded, this one is still very ‘young’ with just 252,000kms. The last of the line with a turbo intercooled motor , with a regular service history from new. The motor has never been pulled down & still runs as new, using no oil between changes. It’s exceptional off road performance is complemented by a Harrop Eaton ‘E-Locker’  (Diff Lock).  It’s 6 cylinder torque makes climbing dunes etc a relaxed affair when compared to it’s many higher revving alternatives.
  • Extended off grid capability: The combination of the solid build of both Patrol & Tvan provide the basis for safe & legal weight carrying, enabling sufficient supplies to be carried for up to two months at a time. Complementing this ( & integral to this extended travel time ability) an extended GVM,  a separate fridge & freezer, a fully self sufficient power system, similar or better storage  storage capacity to larger & heavier 4wd truck based expedition vehicles & water tanks with a combined capacity 230 litres of water, which can be extended further with use of extra jerry cans if required. Fuel range from the long range tanks when towing the Tvan off road is around 1000kms. With additional Jerry cans this is easily doubled . Storage space (not on the roof) for a max of 11 x 20l Jerry cans.  We have never needed to carried more than 5, & only rarely filled more than 2.  Our 230litres of tank water easily lasts us 3 weeks, & can be stretched to 4 & we have always found good water to top up with within that time frame, even in the remotest areas.  Consider that buying this outfit will provide you with more than the average touring 4wd, & similar capabilities ( with less weight  & better access on tighter trails) to an expedition truck costing 4 times as much!
  • Comfort, convenience & Flexibility:  Sleeping under a hard roof on a queen size inner sprung mattress. Arrive, open rear hatch & you can be in bed in less than a minute. Our favourite way to camp – ‘a luxury swag on wheels’.  Or put up the peg free tent in 5 minutes to double the interior living space. Or add one (or more) of the several included annexes/awnings for longer stays. Engine heated pumped hot water water always available on arrival at camp. Cost free & stays hot for up to 3 days. To reheat a short drive suffices.  Included Thetford 365 Porta potti toilet. Whilst the full package enables extended periods of travel, the both Patrol & Tvan have kitchens, & a pair of unused 4wd mattreses & an OzTent RV3 are included – enabling the Patrol to be used for shorter times off grid – a week or 3 at a time if required. Radio/media players x 2 (Patrol & Tvan)
  • Safety: Front mounted vehicle winch, Full recovery kit, mostly unused, 2+1 spare wheels – all the same – interchangeable between Patrol & Tvan, Full travelling spares kit for both Patrol & Tvan, & many ‘redundancies’ built into the design so in the event of any failure, there are alternatives. Important when a long way from anywhere!  Quality Icom 450 UHF with extension speaker close to driver’s ear.
  • Thoughtful design: The design is one born of experience. Knowing what works. Eg. All storage is designed to avoid the need to move stuff to access other stuff. Ease of use being of far greater importance to the long term traveller than for short holiday breaks.

Balanced & 100% self sufficient Electrical Setup 

  • 3 x 120Ah Ritar Batteries (Replaced in 2020 after the first set of same Ritar batteries had lasted for 10 years).
  • 30A mains charger (useful for when parked under cover for extended periods, but has *never* been needed whilst travelling due to sufficient battery capacity buffer against poor solar weather & the additional dc to dc charging from the vehicle when driving).
  • 2 x pure sine wave inverters
  • Fused 70mm2 connection between crank battery & Aux batteries enables all to be solar charged, all to be charged from a second mains charger in Tvan, Extended winching periods if required, & jump starting vehicle without jumper leads (turn of a switch).
  • All circuits via individual Blueseas circuit breakers mounted in a Blueseas distribution board  
  • Power cable connection between vehicle & Tvan enables batteries to be charged in the sun whilst camped in the Tvan in the shade.  
  • Multiple LED lights   
  • 60 litre fridge (on slide) & 35 litre freezer (on slide). 


 Vehicle & Tvan Specs

  • 2006 Nissan Patrol with solid aluminium rear canopy. Full service record since new. Always had 5000km oil & filter changes. A few modest modifications for reliability, comfort & pleasurable driving. Supplied registered, Roadworthy & ready for travel, wherever you wish to take it. 
  • 2010 Mk 2 Tvan with a variety of factory & aftermarket annexes/awnings. Also in ready to travel anywhere condition. 
  • Both the above were purchased to ’see us out’ & have been treated & cared for accordingly.  Health now sadly makes an earlier than expected sale necessary. 


  • The complete package is being sold inclusive of everything required to drive away into the ’Never Never’  – camping equipment, spares, recovery gear, etc etc. All you need to add is personal belongings. 
  • Patrol GVM is 3900kg & Tvan GTM is 1250kg.  With two people & everything packed for 2 months in the bush the travelling weight is around 5000kg for the complete outfit fully loaded. This is a little under the Patrol’s GVM & well under the Tvan’s GTM. Towball weight is usually around 110kg – depending upon how we pack. 

Location   Near Ballarat, Victoria.

For anyone wanting further (& extensive) information/photos please check this entry in our travel blog at 

To make further enquiry,  please do so via the contact page on the blog  at   Phone number can then be provided to serious buyers. 



The car a 2006, 6 cylinder 4.2 litre inter-cooled turbo diesel, rear leaf sprung cab chassis (higher carrying load capacity than coil) was purchased from it’s first owner, Telstra, at 154,000kms in March 2011.  It was chosen over later vehicles as the last (& best) of the pre ‘sensors for everything’  model with a reputation for reliability, longevity & capability. Fixable without computers & commonly managing well in excess of 500,000kms without the engine needing work so long as the regular oil changes are kept up. In short an ideal vehicle to provide the confidence to travel well off the beaten track. It was bought for & built up to be a self sufficient off grid tourer for full time & remote area travel. To that end it only had occasional use between 2011 & 2017 until we commenced a travelling lifestyle, using the outfit for the purpose we had saved it for.  It has not disappointed us & will not disappoint anyone who wants it to use in the same way that we have for many more years to come. 

It had been used by Telstra exclusively in central Australia & comes with  comprehensive service records from the Kittle Motor Company who serviced it at 5000km intervals for Telstra in Alice Springs from new.  We have maintained a service record ever since. The car has now done 255,000kms with regular 5000km service intervals throughout, always using quality oil (Penrite HPR 15 semi synthetic exclusively since we’ve owned it).  The motor has never been apart, uses zero oil between changes and runs as well now as the day we bought it. 

The motor remains essentially stock with just a couple of minor improvements which has made it a much nicer car to drive without detracting from it’s inherent reliability. Fitting a 3” exhaust and a modest dynotune (for towing)  increased max turbo pressure from stock 7psi to 13.2 psi.  This made the car what it should have been off the factory floor. Not a ‘’green light racer’ nor an overtuned car prone to overheating, but simply nicer to drive with increased torque coming in at lower revs & improved ability to ‘hold on’ without changing down on hills,  without any compromise to reliability. Very important when travelling alone a long way from help.  Those modest improvements also improved fuel consumption  At 66 years old & having owned many vehicles over the years I can say, hand on heart, that this Patrol is the vehicle I have trusted the more than any other. Trust that has been earned from a long term relationship. It has never let us down. 

The fuel range (solo) is around 1150 – 1200kms from its two fuel tanks (180litres) and can be supplemented with a further 100 litres carried in jerries (included) on the Tvan. In addition the canopy’s interior design also allows for a further 120 litres in jerries to be carried  (although we have never have) effectively giving a very conservative  (allowing for deep sand etc) potential fuel range of over 2000kms fully loaded & towing the Tvan.  This was incorporated in the design in order to carry sufficient fuel for Australia’s longest off road track, the Canning Stock Route, a route we haven’t yet travelled. 

All wheels on the car & Tvan are interchangeable. Steel ROH Blaktrak mine spec with high load capacity (1250kg each).  2 spares on the car & 1 on the Tvan. Probably overkill as we have had just one puncture in 100,000kms.  We had intended to rationalise spares to two & have a spare front frame for the Tvan which we were going to modify, whilst retaining the original to allow swapping between the two. The spare frame will be included for the new owner(s).  Current tyres are Toyo RT’s 265/75 R16. A size readily available in most small outback towns. 

Recovery gear included, including a front mounted Warn winch & onboard/distributed air, Recovery points, equaliser & tree straps, & 2 snatch straps, extra winch rope, shackles & pullies – all in excellent condition. 

Upgraded GVM (Blue plate) of 3900kg. When fully packed for two months off grid with fuel & water,  2 people & the towball weight of the Tvan we are just under the GVM. The Tvan packed appropriately enables extra supplies & extra water to be carried whilst maintaining a towball weight of just 110Kg,  and the total travel weight of around 5000kg. This is without taking the Tvan to it’s max carrying weight. 

With the upgraded GVM came a 2” lift. 

Brakes were upgraded to suit. 

We are experienced but not ‘gung ho’ 4wd’ers, we don’t go looking for terrain to ‘conquer’,  if there is an easier path we will take it, but we do very much appreciate a vehicle which is more capable than us, to provide confidence when we are faced with obstacles along the routes we like to take to get to places we want to go.

To provide extra capability, primarily to avoid the need for potentially damaging ‘momentum to get through’ when a long way from anywhere & alone, we had a front Harrop Eaton diff lock (E-locker)  fitted at Harrop’s Melbourne workshop to complement the well regarded Nissan limited slip diff at the rear. This was an excellent decision. The diff lock has not been used a huge amount, but when it has it’s been great. Instead of risking damage by charging forward like a bull at a gate we have crossed dunes at a steady 2000rpm & climbed rock steps at a slow, steady & in control pace. We love it, just there at our fingertips when needed. Mostly ‘just in case’ but a few occasions where we think it certainly made the difference required to proceed or to simply  ‘get through’ without damage.

A comprehensive touring spares kit for both Patrol & Tvan are included along with enough filters, sufficient for many future services.

The Patrol’s exterior paintwork is pretty good, reflecting it’s usage in the bush & deserts & has polished up well. It’s life largely away from salty coastal air is reflected in a lack of rust & corrosion.  It has never been in an  accident or subject to any serious damage. A new windscreen has very recently been fitted & $2000 spent on replacing a variety of under car bushes & mounts to make it completely ready for new adventures.  

The Tvan will go anywhere the Patrol can go, is very easy to tow & in great condition – a 2010 Mk 2 model with a number of upgrades. Mk 2’s are the most numerous of the various models produced & the model which is the one closest to the original design concept for off road use. Later models have more storage & ‘goodies’ which whilst nice to have (if you don’t have room in the car as we do) adds weight, & particularly towball weight. After owning our Tvan for 9 years we still consider it the best (as in the most flexible in terms of setup, as well as the most capable due to it’s unbeatable assymetric long travel suspension) off road camper trailer available.  We can stop & be in bed in less than a minute if the tent section is not deployed, which we love doing.  We call it our ‘swag on wheels’ with it’s very comfy inner spring queen size bed under a solid roof, or set up in 5 minutes with the tent deployed to more than double the interior living space, but we do also have a full range of original/extra factory awnings & other additions with it for those who like a more comprehensive setup for longer stays. Most of these (costly) extras are little used. The main things which wear out on a Tvan over time are brakes, shock absorbers & zips (& even they last a long time). The original brakes were completely replaced when they were all 10 years old in 2020. The shocks were replaced with the correctly valved (specific to Tvan) Konis at the same time. The canvas section will last ‘forever’ if cared for correctly, but desert dust eventually takes a toll on the zips. Our zips were replaced with new (YKK) when 11 years old in 2021 so should also be good for many years to come.  We also replaced the original Tvan stove with the same but updated model (better designed internals) after the original failed.

Both Tvan & Patrol come with original handbooks + electronic full workshop manual for the Patrol. 


If you are still interested or just intrigued about the rig, please keep reading for more details, photos, design features etc.


Some History which impacted design

When we first set the Patrol up we had no intention of towing. We built it with a ShippShape rooftop tent on top of the canopy.  It was a well designed & quality tent. Experience however quickly revealed that I & a rooftop tent were not mutually compatible, not as most think because of the need to climb up & down a ladder but because I find it particularly difficult to dress in a seated position on the bed, especially with nothing more substantial to lean on than canvas. A few short trips was all that was needed to be sure that this was not going to suit for extended travel so we sold it and bought a ‘towed bedroom’ 

We chose the Tvan after a great deal of research. Our choice came down to a fairly easily arrived at shortlist of just two. A Tvan or an Ultimate camper. Both great & well executed designs, relflected in their well held resale values,. Both lightweight, durable & very capable off road campers. The best of the best in off road ability. The Ultimate offered indoor cooking & dining but with a lot more canvas & longer set up & pack up times than the Tvan. The Tvan offered a solid roof over the bed, canvas which if wet could be packed without risk of making the bed wet, & was far quicker to set up for our style of travelling. It’s greater flexibility in terms of the many ways it could be used trumped the indoor cooking of the Ultimate for us. If faced with the same buying decision again, with experience under our belts we would make the same decision again. 

Switching from Rooftop tent to Tvan had several significant benefits not all initially anticipated in addition to solving the dressing issue.. The solar panels, originally stored inside the canopy were able to be fitted onto the roof. Having previously had a vehicle with rooftop solar we knew how much less hassle it was compared to having to set up the solar & pack it away at every camp. It also created a lot more more storage space & importantly the ability to rationalise the weight of this safely & legally between the car & Tvan. This alone has enabled what has become the way in which we love to travel. To stock up with supplies & to head bush for as long as we can at a time. Out in the bush is our happy place. After the first few days camped the local birds & wildlife learn that we are not a threat & spend more time closer to us & we can feel at home sharing their space. 

Because the Patrol had been set up for ‘solo’ travel we had already built a kitchen with all the necessary features inside the canopy. Of course the Tvan comes with it’s own kitchen too. Whilst having two kitchens may initially seem excessive it has proven been a real boon!  Not only does it provide some redundancy (it was great to have it when on one occasion I had forgotten to get the gas refilled in the Tvan, (discovered when it ran out in a remote area with no gas supplies for hundreds of kilometres) we could just use the Patrol kitchen with it’s separate gas supply. More importantly though, as anyone who has been used to outdoor cooking would know, wind can be a problem, not always predictable when setting up camp. The Patrol kitchen is easily ‘moveable’ to take the cooking area out of the wind. The need is not frequent, but on occasions when it is too windy to cook at the Tvan a second option has proven very useful. Particularly in hot windy conditions when a camp fire would present a bushfire risk.

The Patrol also had all of our power system inside it. Not needing the additional battery capacity & to save a some weight whilst retaining the flexibility of having the solar panels in the sun & us camped in the shade, we deleted the battery from the Tvan & instead have a 10 metre 6B&S ‘umbilical’ cable from Patrol to Tvan to power the Tvan’s requirements when we camp with the Patrol & Tvan disconnected from each other. (When camping still hitched up as we often do the Tvan anderson plug just plugs into the back of the car). This has suited us very well, but if the Tvan is sold separately we will include a new battery with it. The ‘umbilical’ cable will of course be included in a sale of the complete package, but we have a use for the cable if Patrol & Tvan are sold separately. 

There is also a 10 metre heavy duty cable to plug into mains power (for either Tvan or Patrol). 

So although the initial design was ‘doubled up’ in some respects, it has shown itself to have been particularly useful.


2006 GU Dx Patrol Cab Chassis with Telstra’s remote area pack, A sturdy aluminium, chassis mounted canopy, long range fuel tanks, dual spares on swing down brackets, snorkel, bullbar & front winch. A good basis for our conversion.

4.2 TDi 6 cylinder diesel.  The last of a very long line of TD42 motors & the most sophisticated version, but still an ‘old school’ diesel without lots of fancy electronics which cannot be fixed if they fail in remote areas. 

Fuel range  Two fuel tanks. 1 x 95litres, 1 x 85 litres. Car alone – range circa 1100kms. Towing – circa 1000kms . With extra fuel carried jerry cans on Tvan & in the rear of the canopy – a conservative (off road) range of 2000 kms is possible.

Fuel consumption We don’t push hard most of the time & our records (kept on a the fuel map app) cover a wide range of conditions over the past 6 years, mostly loaded & with the Tvan attached ,but a few brief periods without towing too. From Highway to long distance low ratio 4wd’ing  – Average was 16l per 100km. High was 21 litres per 100km & low was an almost unbelievable 11.9 per 100km (over a 60km stretch of highway when we deliberately tried to see how low we could get (whilst towing!) Median was 15.5 km per 100. Importantly the figures have  remained consistent over the 6 year period showing that the car & it’s motor are in fine fettle. We think figures quite reasonable for a 5 tonne combo over some of the tough country we’ve covered. 

Driving Cab  

  • Original Drivers bucket seat & passenger ‘1.5’ bench seat replaced with dual bucket seats & centre console etc from ST model Patrol. 
  • Both seats have ‘Black Duck’ canvas seat covers which show signs of use. No tears or damage – good for many more years. 
  • Behind the seats are the standard Nissan wheelbrace, 3 stage jack etc plus an extra 30 metre length of unused dyneema rope for use as either an extension or replacement  for the front winch. 
  • Rubber ‘dish’ type floor mats in both foot wells. Recently replaced. 
  • Second ‘secret’ glovebox, custom built. Can store (among other things), an Ipad & a satphone & PLB, & has a dual USB charging port inside (with switch on dash).
  • Icom 80 channel (IC 450) UHF with controls & speaker in the hand piece , plus an extension speaker behind the driver’s right ear. This is an excellent CB radio. Very clear & easy to use with all controls in the hand piece.  
  • Dual Redarc gauges in a pillar pod . 1. EGT/turbo boost pressure   2. Coolant temp/ Oil pressure – both with settable visible & audible alarms. Neat & easy to read at a glance.
  • The oil pressure gauge gives a more accurate indication that the stock oil pressure warning light, but is tee’d into the same circuit so both work. 
  • A voltmeter in the dash monitors the auxillary batteries in the canopy, enabling charging to be monitored from the driving seat
  • A Redarc Towpro brake controller is fitted.
  • Low coolant Alarm (visible & audible) – Sensor is at the highest point of the engine’s coolant system to provide warning as early as possible of loss of coolant. Self tests every time ignition is switched on. 
  • Canopy doors alarm (Visible & audible) to warn if doors not closed when driving away. 
  • Tyre pressure monitor system
  • Rear vision & reversing monitor (2 cameras- selectable) in normal rear mirror position. Rear vision camera has 30 degree angle of view which provides best depth of field, comparable to view in normal rear view mirror. Reversing camera has wider angle of view & shows the tow hitch to aid hitching up. Note there is no camera mounted on the rear of Tvan at present. We are used to driving & reversing with the side mirrors when using towing the Tvan & use’  the camera only to monitor that nothing is amiss with the Tvan   The rear vision monitor is however as useful as a rear vision mirror when driving  without the Tvan.    
  • Pioneer radio & media player with JBL dual speakers with seperate tweeters.
  • Carpeted Dash cover – original dash in perfect condition (not one of the unfortunate ‘bubbled’ dashes which were subject to a recall by Nissan). 

Front of car

  • Steel Bullbar .
  • On the bullbar is the UHF antenna & lower down there is a QD attachment for the 3 piece sand flag. 
  • Snorkel
  • Warn winch with 30 metres of ‘Dyneema’ rope.
  • Stedi Light bar & a new Pirahna Superloom lighting harness for all lights.
  • Pair of round Hella (I think) driving lights (largely superfluous since fitting the light bar but can remain).

Side of Cab

  • Nissan ST model wheel flares.
  • Nissan side steps.

Rear of Cab

  • Lower air vents blocked off & taped up – preventative for water crossings. Easily removed if desired.


  • 9 wheels – Car 4 +2 spares Tvan 2 +1 spare
  • All ROH steel mine spec (1250kg load rating)  BlakTrak  – interchangeable between Car & Tvan .
  • Currently Fitted with Toyo RT 265/75R16 Tyres which have only done 18,000 kms.

Rear of Car

  • Nissan Towbar with square receiver. Mk 3 DO35 Hitch Pin
  • Two Spares (Unused) on swing down brackets & each fitted with large, tough Redback Tyre bags (for rubbish or firewood).
  • Between the two spares is a lockable cover for a container which holds sufficient oil for an engine oil change. Container included. 
  • Dual rear cameras:
  • Reversing camera is mounted fairly low & out of sight.
  • Rear vision camera is mounted  higher on the canopy wall. 
Left compartment is full canopy length & takes the Oztent RV3. Right compartment is ¾ canopy length & has 3 sliding storage trays for tools etc.


  • Standard except for 3” Genie ‘Legendex’ Stainless Exhaust (with added internally ceramic coated dump pipe) & a modest dynotune which improved driveability greatly & controls EGT’s nicely.
  • Motor has never been pulled down. Runs very well & never uses any oil between services.  Large number of filters for multiple services included. (Oil, fuel & air)
  • A CAV pre-fuel filter is fitted in addition to the stock fuel filter. A boxful of spare filters included.  In addition there is a marine type diesel rated bulb type 1 way inline valve fitted to make fuel bleeding after a filter change a breeze. 
  • A full set of new/unused radiator hoses, + 2 full sets of drive belts (1 set used, 1 new & unused).  
  • Diff breather extensions to rear top of engine bay.

Travel spares kit included. In addition to belts & hoses already mentioned, there are also front Wheel bearings & seals etc & multiple oil, air, & fuel filters.

Brakes Front 

  • RDA ‘Slotted & Dimpled’ front rotors with EBC ‘Yellowstuff’ pads – a significant improvement over the original brakes.

Brakes Rear 

  • Recently the original (from new) rear brakes were replaced. New drums, shoes & wheel cylinders 6000kms ago. 

Car Battery 

  • We use Repco branded batteries (made by Yuasa) for two reasons, Nationwide replacement service if any problem (haven’t had any) & because we have always had a good run out of them in the Patrol. 
  • Average lifespan 5 years. Last one purchased in Weipa in September ’21.  The only time a battery has actually failed necessitating an immediate replacement & thus the only time we have needed to jump start the car. The system worked perfectly. No jumper leads required. Just turn a rotary switch in the canopy & jump start off the auxiliary batteries. The Bluesesas rotary changeover switch incorporates alternator protection to prevent any risk of damage to the alternator diodes if inadvertently switched with the engine running. 


  • Gull wing door on passenger (kitchen) side – window with security mesh behind. Door provides shade for lunch stops etc. A Corflute insert can be slipped between glass & mesh for better shade .
  • Horizontal bifold gullwing door on driver side. 
  • Window on rear wall (also with interior security mesh) , makes inside a bit lighter.
  • Grab bar on wall to aid climbing up for roof access.
  • Under tray cabinet with gas bottle in use connected to a bayonet fitting for the gas stove & room for various other spares
  • At rear on drivers side there is another gas bottle holder (& spare gas bottle) bolted out of harms way to the chassis utilising existing threaded holes.
Spare gas bottle for Patrol kitchen.

Canopy Layout aims     

  The design had several aims. 

1. to keep weight as low & as far forward as possible 

2. To avoid the chore of regularly having to move stuff in order to get to other stuff.

3. To have easily slide in slide out containers removable from the vehicle to make packing easier & more convenient when camped.

4.To have a kitchen requiring a minimal set up to use & with a supply of regularly used ingredients at hand. 

5. To maintain a side view of traffic approaching from the passenger side , from the driver’s seat, when needing to reverse out of angle parking & the like, retaining the view through the canopy side window.

6. For the structure inside the canopy to be easy to dismantle in order to access things for replacement or repair. 

7. To maximise the use of available storage space bearing in all other aims.  

Time & use has proven all of these aims were largely met.   

Power distribution board sits above the enclosed hot water service. Clear view from cab window over battery storage compartment to canopy side window.

Canopy layout & contents. 

  • At the front in the middle of the canopy floor are the auxillary batteries in their own compartment & all the electronics (more on this later) are essentially on the front wall
  • On the passenger side of battery compartment is the hot water service (more on this later)
  • On the driver side of the batteries is the Boss PO7 air compressor & it’s 9 litre aluminium air tank. Compressor is set to cut out at 140psi & to cut back in at 90 psi. Air lines go to connectors on the outside of the canopy on both sides of the vehicle. An air hose long enough to reach all wheels on each side (including the Tvan when hitched up) is stored inside the canopy & alongside the compressor is room for the unused snatch strap and tree protector straps, (included) & our electric chain saw & it’s batteries(not included) & our tyre inflator (not included). Rated bow shackles & snatch blocks also included. 
Air compressor & tank, plus alternator safe switching to parallel aux batteries with crank battery.
  • Rearward of the battery compartment, on the floor is the custom built 160 litre heavy duty plastic water tank (with internal baffles & double skin top. This tank can be filled in two ways. Via click on hose connector, or via a screw cap using containers to pour from when there is not a reticulated water supply (eg, hand pumped water bore). 
  • On the passenger side of the water tank is the kitchen & hidden within the kitchen, out of sight but easily accessible is the water pump. (more on the water system later). 
  • On the driver side of the water tank on the floor is some vacant storage space. Generally my fishing tackle box & anything which needs a temporary home (eg. shopping) sits there. 
  • Rearward of the water tank – on either side of the canopy are the fridge & freezer on slides. Both are ARB units. Either can be a fridge or freezer. We use the 60 litre one as a fridge & the 35 litre one as a freezer. Used this way is a significant part of our strategy to enable the extended periods between re-supplying  which are possible. 12v & 240v, automatically switch between 12v & 240v with priority given to 240v when available.  
  • Above both the fridge & freezer are large, lidded, plastic storage boxes — one each side easy to slide in & out on rails. Note that all the plastic boxes are not the hard type cheapies from Bunnings etc (which are prone to cracking & don’t last). These are all durable heavy duty types which will last a lifetime. Using the boxes was a deliberate design choice. Drawers may look ’tidier’ but removable boxes provide far greater versatility making packing & unpacking easier, boxes can be used for many other purposes, or removed to create a larger carrying space when required.  
  • Above the water tank, accessible from the driver side are 4 more large, lidded, storage boxes on rails & two smaller un-lidded storage boxes. in two vertical layers. Sliding out one or both of the boxes on the outer side  to access the inner slide out boxes is the only time something needs to be moved to get to something else, so the inner boxes carry less used contents, but it’s not a big deal sliding boxes in & out on their rails. 
Water tank below. Two smaller sliding boxes.
More sliding boxes
And more sliding boxes. Freezer is 35 litre.
  • Total ‘sliding box’ capacity is approximately 300 litres ( with another approximate 250 litres of storage box space inside the Tvan). 
  • At the rear of the canopy is essentially an empty full width space. If we were carrying extra jerry cans inside the canopy this is where they would go. 4 x 20 litre with a steel bar to lash them to. If maximising fuel carrying capacity, removal of one storage box would enable 2 more 20 litre jerries to be carried in the ‘side space referred to previously where we normally carry temporary shopping & tackle box. So potentially 100 litres in addition to the tanks & the 100 litres  possible to carry on the Tvan – (total 380 litres). We have never carried any fuel inside the canopy however, our range without that has always been sufficient.  Higher up on the rear wall are mounts for a long handled shovel ( the most essential piece of equipment for de-bogging, use around the fire, digging disposal holes, & as a lever to lift wheels onto studs without effort). Shovel is included. 
  • Also up high at the back is a heavy duty plastic tube with screw caps each end for storing long straight stuff. Poles for the Patrol’s canopy awning & the 3 section sand flag. (We also carried a large umbrella & a 3 piece surf rod in it). 
4 x 20 litre Jerry cans can be fitted in the rear – we have never needed to though.
  • And finally the top section – This is where lighter stuff is stored. 
  • Two reclining armchairs,
  • a table,  –
  • foam mats for around the kitchen & at the Tvan tent doors,
  • Tvan floor mat (to protect the waterproof vinyl floor & to make cleaning it out easier, (Lift mat out & shake).  (If Tvan is sold separately this would go with the Tvan & be stored inside the Tvan). 
  • The Patrol’s canopy  awning is also stored up there. . This is a two pole awning which slides into sailtrack above the door on the kitchen side & provides greater protection than just the door itself. The open door ‘tensions’ it nicely. 
  • On the driver side of the top section is storage for a couple of fishing rods (not included). We got fed up in our previous vehicle of having to make up the rods every time we wanted to wet a line, & consequently often passed by opportunities because it ‘wasn’t worth the bother’. In the Patrol they can be stored made up & ready to go.
  • At the front of the top section is additional space that we have used for some spare drinking water hose & our Camelbak water carriers. 
  • In addition to all the structured storage there are all sorts of ’nooks & crannies’, which inevitably become home for ‘ homeless things’ as we travel. 
  • Within the structured storage we generally manage to have at least one empty box ‘available’ ( bearing in mind that there is at least as much storage again in the Tvan). 
  • Underneath the canopy are two large & long storage spaces.
  • One side, 3/4 the length of the canopy  fits 3 large heavy duty plastic/nylon containers to carry all the necessary tools  for remote solo travel. This simple system with each tray on a rope to pull them out works well.
  • On the other side we have carried additional spare parts, a pair of maxtrax etc. The Oztent RV3 fits into this space quite snugly. If used for this there is room inside the canopy for some Maxtrax. Potentially though if a new owner wanted to preserve interior space for something else the maxtrax could be fitted under the Rhino rack mounted solar panel on top of the driving cab. (Note. Maxtrax not included)

Water in the Patrol  

  • 2 water pumps. 1 in service & 1 spare. Easily accessible – just slide the stove out.
  • The spare has fittings to enable it to be used to pump water out of  other sources of good potable fresh water. Eg, Water hand pumped into a bucket, river or lake water. This can be powered via an anderson plug connection using our 10 metre ‘umbilical’ cable. This cable will be included if both Patrol & Tvan are sold as a Unit.  We have always been ‘choosy’ about the quality of water we take on board  & to date have never pumped creek or lake water into our tank. Sometimes into buckets. Best was when we camped for a few weeks on private property & had a donkey boiler by a creek to use.  The ‘spare’ pump enabled lovely long & unlimited hot showers.  
  • The onboard tank supplies both hot & cold water. Cold water is via a replaceable 1 micron solid carbon filter which filters out any potential nasty ‘bugs’ as well as unpleasant tastes (like Chlorine). We carry small quantities of liquid chlorine to use if we have any concerns about the water in the tank, but it has only been used as a precaution on occasions where the water tank has sat with water in it unused for longish periods. Several spare carbon filters are included. (For both Patrol & Tvan) We find they will generally last the two of us a year, but we’ll change them earlier if they have sat unused for an extended period. 
  • Taps are on the outside of the canopy, underneath, in a protected position behind the passenger side rear mudguard, with click on covers to keep them clean. The water hoses which we use to fill the tanks can double as a supply for the clip on kitchen sink or to shower with, utilising standard garden hose trigger sprayers. (New trigger spray guns will be needed).
  • The clip on sink & draining board (with telescopic support leg & removable bowl was made before we got the Tvan so has rarely been used. The Tvan sink is more convenient.
  • There is another small hinged & fold out kitchen work surface useful when making up lunches etc which gets a lot of use.
  • When folded away we store another plastic container ’The Lunchbox’ (included) on top of it, (acquired to fit the space) with a filled thermos flask (not included)  held securely in place between the Lunch box  & wall mounted fire extinguisher once the door is closed. The Lunch box holds all the non refrigerated items required for an easy lunch stop. Pull up, open canopy door, stand in the shade & bobs your uncle for a quick feed & hot drink. 
  • The hot water system is wonderful, we had the same in our previous vehicle & will have the same in the next.  It is a ‘marine calorifier which utilises waste heat from the vehicle’s motor to heat the water as we drive. Essentially a heat exchanger inside an insulated tank. It is very efficient, heating cold water to a good shower temperature within 20 to 30 minutes driving. Every time we arrive at camp we do so with 22 litres of hot water. In the tank the water is at the same temperature that the car’s coolant has been – 80 or 90 degrees C, & a tempering valve automatically adds cold water as the hot tap is used to both avoid any scalding risk & to make the supply of hot water go much further.
  • We can adjust the temperature of the output with the turn of a knob. Hotter for washing dishes than for hair washing or a shower for example, The output remains stable as water is used. No need for constant adjustments. Because of the high temperature in the hot water tank, the automatically added cold water makes the 22 litres go much further.
  • Extra insulation around the boxed in hot water tank assists to keep the water hot for around 3 days without driving in warm climates. A couple of days in Victorian winter. A quick drive reheats it.
  • There is also a built in electric heating element if you  have access to either mains 240v power(or a small (1kva) genenerator). 
  • Generally on the rare occasions we have been stationary long enough to be running out of hot water  we go for a drive (firewood collecting perhaps) or just boil a billy on a fire as we don’t carry a generator & rarely camp anywhere where we have mains power available.
  • It’s a great system with no ongoing costs & very convenient. Only once we have had any problem with it. It remained useable but the output temperature could no longer be adjusted. We used it like this for several months until we bought a replacement tempering valve fairly recently & fitted it which fixed the problem. After several years of outback water there was calcium build up in the original tempering valve making the adjustment knob hard to turn. Subsequently we cleaned that out using vinegar to dissolve the clacium & it is now fully functional again , so will be included as a spare, although it shouldn’t be needed for a good few years yet.
  • The outside taps have a bolt on guard to reduce the risk of damage in very tight scrubby country, but we have only ever used it once as a precaution, their position is very well protected by the vehicle’s mudguard.
  • Inside the canopy are a pair of stop valves as another layer of protection, so all water is not inadvertently lost or pumped out in the unlikely event of damage occurring to external pipes whilst driving. Never has. (Of course the pump is usually switched off whilst driving, but good to have the extra protection in case of forgetting when in remote areas). 
  • The water tank (160 litres) can be filled from directly from a tap/hose connection or by removing a larger filler cap when a reticulated supply is not available.
  • A water gauge is fitted which shows exactly how many litres we have used out of the tank. It is reset to zero every time we refill & we work on the basis of 150 litres each to be safe.The last 10 litres can be difficult to get if the ground is sloping the wrong way. 
Water gauge displays actual usage.

A plumbing spares kit is included with a good variety of John Guest fittings, & other hose connectors.

The Patrol Kitchen

  • Central to the kitchen the two burner gas stove + griller. It is the the top of the Lido Junior range, with flame out protection.
  • It is mounted on slides, so pulls outward for use.
  • When slid out it’s gas supply hose can be connected to the external bayonet fitting, with access to the gas bottle in the under tray cabinet alongside to turn the gas on/of.
  • The cabinet has a vent to outside in the floor to prevent any build up of gas should there ever be a leak. 
  • The stove can also be slid completely out from the canopy & with another hose & regulator (included) be connected to a free standing gas bottle & used in another location if desired. 
  • The small fold out work surface is along side & the fridge is an arms length away as is the kitchen sink with additional work surface. 
  • Behind & above the stove are storage shelves for regular ingredients, on display to make the cooking process ‘flow, more easily, ‘just like home’.  The shelving was built to accomodate the experienced travellers favourite containers held securely in place on any track. Plastic wide top ‘jars’ with screw lids which are extremely durable & show the contents. They are what some companies sold fruit in. Unfortunately the fruit companies changed the size to a little smaller & a  less secure fit,  but we have a good supply of clean ready to use spares of the correct size which will be included.
  • Below the ‘Jar shelves’ 6 rectangular lidded food storage containers (included) fit snugly into place, with their contents easily viewable.
  • On the very top shelf above the ‘jars’ is space to store a kitchen roll, alfoil etc.
  • The design is such that all remains in place on even the roughest of tracks. 
Fridge is 60 Litres

Electrical/Power system


Charging sources.   

  • 425w of roof mounted solar
  • 40 amp Redarc dc to dc charger (BCDC1240) – charge as you drive.
  • Change over relay to switch automatically between the two depending upon whether ignition is on or off. (Spare relay included). 
  • 30 amp Victron mains Charger with bluetooth functionality for monitoring & changing settings. 
  • A Victron BMV 702 battery monitor (with 500amp shunt ) provides accessible monitoring & history information about charging & battery condition
30 Amp Mains Charger
40 amp DC to DC charger and 350w pure sine wave inverter.


  • 360Ah  Ritar AGM batteries (3 x 120H)  Previous batteries lasted for 10 years. When one failed we replaced all 3 with the same again in July 2021 & have done little work since then as most of that time between October ’21 to May ’23 then we were caretaking on Cape York & not camping. 
  • The electrical system is a well balanced for our usage with the batteries returned float almost every day, most commonly by or before midday. This ensures long life. This is running the fridge & freezer 24/7, a CPAP machine every night, lights, radio, charging of laptops & various devices & power tool batteries, water pump etc etc . 
  • Victron 350w pure sine inverter feeding a labelled & dedicated double pole twin power point providing off grid 240v for charging various devices, appliances & 18v tool batteries. (Devices, appliance & 18v tools not included)
  • Blueseas distribution board with built in (& replaceable) circuit breakers for each circuit. Circuit breakers are the type which double as on/off switches for each circuit. Easily accessible. 
  • Several 12v supply sockets. Internal & external. 
  • LED lighting throughout, with a variety of different lights to suit different uses, including some which are dimmable.  
  • As well as charging the auxiliary batteries from solar or from the car,  the auxiliary batteries & crank battery can also be paralleled at the turn of a knob, enabling jump starting from auxiliary batteries if ever needed (without carrying jumper leads), the crank battery can be charged from solar, all batteries can be charged simultaneously from the built in ,mains charger & the auxiliary batteries can be utilised to boost available current if extended winching is ever needed as the cable between the two is a large 70mm2 with an appropriately sized fuse in line (under the bonnet) as a protection against any risk of cable damage & accidental earthing (& spare fuses included). 

240v Mains power

  • 240v power input socket on outside of canopy.
  • Feeds in via an RCD switch.
  • 3 internal power points, all double pole type.  1 for each fridge & an easily accessible double one for any other use. 
  • Certificate of Electrical safety.

The Tvan 

  • Will go anywhere the Patrol can go, is easy to tow & has been well cared for.
  • Like the Patrol, the Tvan is ready for any adventure the new owner may have in mind.
  • 2010 Mk 2 model with a number of upgrades.
  • The Mk 2 is the most numerous of the various models produced & the model which is the one closest to the original design concept for off road use. Later models have more storage & ‘goodies’ which whilst nice to have (if you don’t have room in the car as we do) adds weight, & particularly towball weight.
  • After owning our Tvan for 9 years we still consider it the best (as in the most flexible in terms of setup, as well as the most capable due to it’s brilliantly designed long travel suspension) off road camper trailer available. 
  • We can stop & be in bed in less than a minute if the tent section is not deployed, which we love doing, we call it our ‘luxury swag on wheels’ with it’s very comfy  bed under a solid roof,
  • or set up in 5 minutes with the tent deployed (no external poles or pegs ) to more than double the interior space, plus adding indoor space for chairs etc.
  • Mk 2 Tvans  were supplied with either  a ‘long’ or a ‘short’ drawbar. Ours is a ‘Long’ . The long is the most popular of the two & later models only came with a ‘long’. (And post production extension kits are available to convert short tolLong).   We feel that the greater ease of reversing & the added stability when towing at speed make the longer drawbar the better option. Some prefer it because of the ability to carry more ’stuff’ on the drawbar.
  • Whilst I think about the drawbar, we had considered, before deciding to sell our Tvan, that we might delete the spare wheel from the drawbar altogether, considering that two spares (for both car & Tvan) would be quite adequate  (rather than the three we have). To do this we intended to alter the front carry frame to create a more useful (to us) additional fire wood carrying space.  But we didn’t want to end up with a Tvan to eventually sell with no spare wheel carrying ability. Not everyone has the benefit of interchangeable wheels with their tow vehicle.  Enter the Tvan owners ’network’. An enthusiastic & helpful bunch of folk with both an online forum, and a very active Facebook group. I was offered an identical frame off someone else’s Mk2 which I could modify, whilst  retaining the original with option of using either, as switching between the two would not be a great deal of work. By the time we were in a position to undertake these modifications (back home again) the decision to sell had been reached, so the spare frame simply remains a spare, but is available to be included in the purchase of the Tvan if a buyer wants it. 
  • Originally supplied with a Mk1 DO35 tow hitch – we upgraded to the later & improved (& nicer to use) Mk 3 tow hitch & pin.  This very effectively protects the locking mechanism from dust & dirt as well as ensuring the dust cover cannot be fitted unless the hitch has been properly locked on. A simple & neat safety ‘reminder’.  
  • Kitchen has been upgraded to same model stove as the original, (but is a later version which has far better designed & fabricated ‘internals’) after the original failed . The improvement was not apparent until we had old & new side by side. 
Original stove
Replacement stove
Sink & Cutlery drawer (only partially pulled out). Sink has electric tap & Tvan has a 70 litre water tank.
  • Inner spring (pocket spring) ‘Plush’ Re-creation ‘Queen size’ mattress – *very* comfy. & cooler than foam in hot weather, with no under mattress condensation issues to manage.   ( We have since bought another to put on our bed at home & have recommended them to others many times). Pocket spring construction enables the matress to be bent (in one direction, is the same manner as a foam mattress, making both bed making & installing/removing the mattress easier.
  • Although the bed is Queen size width it is only normal double size length. Both of us are around 5’9” tall & we find that length suits us ok, but anyone a bit taller might want some extra length. The manufacturers produced an aptly named ‘bed extender’  accessory. This clips into place at the end of the bed & provides the support for an extra ‘bolster’ to lengthen the bed to full queen size. We have a bed extender to include, but  the new owners will have to make or get made their own bolster. We’ve seen all from a simple length of foam to a custom made inner sprung section which zips to the end of the mattress.
  • Sleeping arrangements in Tvans varies among different owners. Some prefer to sleep with their heads at the closed end, some with heads at the open/tent end. On the whole we prefer the latter particularly the ‘luxury swag’-like like experience of waking to look out with the breeze on our face. However we are quite happy to sometimes sleep the other way around if the ground is sloping the ‘wrong’  way in preference to unhitching for an ‘overnighter’ & levelling the Tvan.  Another example of the Tvan’s range of flexibilities.
  • It is not uncommon for folk unfamiliar with Tvans to think that they will feel ‘claustrophobic’. Most when shown are pleasantly surprised that the well thought out design is not so. 
  • Floor rails  a factory accessory – either side of the mattress – for holding anything stored on top of the mattress when ‘rockin’ & rollin’ off road. using straps across the bed. We carry very little on the bed, but found it was the best place to carry my pelican case filled with camera lenses. Many folk carry camp chairs & all sorts on the bed.
  • Scirrocco 12v fan – great on hot still nights when the the open roof hatches which usually enable a through breeze are not enough.  Some models had two – one either side. Ours has just one. Easy to fit another if desired. As 12v fans go the are the best available. Directional on a gimbal, Quiet, moves a lot more air than most & more efficient on power than most. 
  • 70 litre water tank with both hand pump & electric pump. This increases our total water carrying capacity between Patrol & Tvan to 230 litres, in two tanks. Having more than one tank is always reassuring when in remote areas, providing a ‘back up’ should a tank fail.  We tend to , by default, always travel in ‘water conservation mode unless we have certainty about our next water supply & can make it last up to 4 weeks if we need to. 3 weeks is comfortable. When we have certainty about the next water supply we enjoy the luxury of hot showers instead of flannel washes. 🙂  
  • AM/FM Radio (brand new just fitted, & under warranty)  Bluetooth compatibility allows music streaming  from device + usb input too.  2m whip antenna for best AM signal in remote areas. Antenna is removed for driving & stored in outer cupboard with awning poles etc. , It attaches (screws on to mount without tools) in seconds when stopped.
  • The radio is mounted in a custom made enclosure, with a 180 w pure sine Victron inverter mounted above it. 
  • A 15 amp Projecta mains charger fitted (Can charge Tvan battery if fitted plus can also charge Patrol Aux Batteries & Crank battery – a backup to to mains charger in the Patrol should it ever be required).
  • Tvan also has an external 240v mains input. 
  • A fire extinguisher is mounted on the wall above the radio enclosure
  • 4 x directional interior lights. LED – G4 type globes. 
  • External plug in LED light attaches to outer wall above kitchen, with yellow diffuser to discourage flying insects . Another the same without the yellow can be used inside to light the inside tent area. 
  • A box full of travel spares including pre-greased/vacuum sealed new ‘quality’ wheel bearings (not cheap Chinese), Wheel bearing seals hub caps, Spare new Koni Shock, spare diaphram for the manual water pump, a bag of spare 2 piece shock rubbers (very easy to fit) & many other assorted but useful useful ‘goodies’. Original Tvan handbook. 
  • 5 x 20 litre plastic Jerry cans are included to fit the external storage spaces available. We have mainly travelled with two filled with diesel  in the side storage ‘pockets as a ‘just in case’ safety thing . Their position in the Tvan also aids it minimising tow ball weight, valuable in more ‘gnarly’ off road situations. Fully loaded ready for extended bush travel our measured towball weight is a very reasonable 110kg.
  • The 3 front diesel jerry cans are usually empty. Of course extra water could be carried instead of fuel but we have never felt the need. 
  • Recently the Tvan’ has undergone a significant refurbishment, including some repainting, replacement of worn rubbers, replacement of rusty fasteners & catches with new & plenty of TLC to remove it’s ‘desert patina bringing it back to it’s original shiny white & ready for its next owner’s adventures.
  • The front drawbar rack, as well as carrying 3 of the 5 jerry cans, & providing angled stone protection plates  to protect the front of the tvan (we have recently rubber coated ours again as part of the re-furbishing process) also  holds the spare wheel/tyre, plus 2 gas bottles with a recently added dual regulator & manual change over switch so you don’t need to change gas lines when gas runs out in the middle of cooking (as it inevitably always does. Wish we had done that long ago!).
  • There is space around the gas bottles which we have utilised to carry a few useful blocks of timber (for levelling or as a jack plate) & some rolled up shade mesh, used it zip tied to the Patrol’s bullbar to protect the car’s radiator from a build up of grass/spinifex seed on some tracks.
  • There is also a space where the original Tvan battery fitted & the connections for this (taped up to protect them). Adding a battery again would be very straightforward. If the Tvan is sold separately we will fit a new battery. Not required if the the Tvan & Patrol stay together.
  • Under the standard vinyl cover (which goes over the spare tyre & adds further front end stone protection too) a purpose designed round zip up bag holds the drinking water grade hoses used for both filling the water tanks, and as ‘extensions’ from the Patrol’s eternal taps for either kitchen use with Patrol’s clip on sink or for showering/hair washing. This sits neatly in the centre of the spare wheel.
  • We have also somehow accumulated a couple of spare vinyl covers too which will be included. 
  • Checker plate on back of folding rear floor provides for comfort when only half floor is used. (a popular upgrade). ie. When camping without deploying the tent. 
  • 3 Wheels all fitted with 265/75R16 wheels on 6 stud wheels to suit the Patrol/Tvan.
  • The tent canvas is in good condition with many more years of life left in it but has a ‘desert character’. We feel it best to leave this rather than to try to clean it. –
  • All door zips (doors & flyscreens) were replaced professionally when they were 11 years old in early 2021. Only the kitchen side outer door zip had failed but we felt it prudent once we had removed the tent from the Tvan to get all four replaced at the same time. The tent was replaced using new fasteners to ensure no ’slippage’ which can occur when fasteners which have lost their tension are re-used.
  • We have a powder coated aluminium ‘mudguard shelf’ for the kitchen which clips on in seconds. I had it made to a design shared with me by a fellow Tvan owner. There are many designs & ‘contraptions’ that owners use to get that extra bit of very useful kitchen space, but no other design I have seen is simpler or quicker to install, more sturdy or as aesthetically pleasing as this one. 
  • The original brakes were fully replaced with new drums & complete backing plates/shoes, magnets & springs at 10 years old in 2020, including the use of Koyo Japanese bearings. At the same time the original Koni shocks were replaced with new ones. These have all travelled a maximum of 30,000kms.

There is heaps of storage space, actually far more than you might imagine. 

  • There is storage under the slide out kitchen on the ‘passenger side’ of the Tvan,  We keep various kitchen items & a fire blanket there & also have a replaceable water filter fitted, same type as on the Patrol. (Spare filters for the Tvan as well as for the Patrol included). Plus a good cutlery drawer & the sink with tap which we use a suitably sized plastic bowl in. (included). 
  • Internal roof nets. Standard  on most later models, we bought  them from Track Trailer & fitted them. Although, like all Track accessories, they were expensive, they have proven to be great value as they hold a surprising amount- all of our clothing, (with the exception of one bulky ‘cold weather coat’ each), packed into various drawstring net bags or ‘packing cubes’ according to type of clothing to make finding what we want easier.  One side for each of us.  
  • The roof is lined with an effective soft anti-condensation lining. Not all earlier models were supplied with this. Ours was. We have never experienced any of the condensation issues which some owners of earlier models report. The lining can also be utilised in other ways if desired as velcro attaches to it very effectively. 
  • Internal side wall nets, another Track accessory – useful for all sorts of smaller stuff.
  • Velcroed mossie nets on both roof hatches allow for air flow without ‘bities’.
  • Lots of room all around the mattress perimeter for storing things which can be ’stuffed’ in & are easily removeable for bed making. Eg we have a sewn ’tube’ which holds half a dozen double length spare toilet rolls  stored in this way, Having them all in a bag like that facilitates easy removal & replacement. 
  • Front driver side external cabinet is partly full width (Awning poles, whip antenna etc) and with room to store much more (awnings, spares etc). 
  • Most surprising is how much can be fitted under the bed. Whilst some prefer the aesthetics of built in drawers, many, (like us) recognise the versatilty, once again of plastic boxes, which can be completely removed for packing  & assure maximum use of available space as well enabling utilisation for a variety of other purposes around the camp other than storage.  Whilst boxes with wheels may seem like the logical choice they rarely go the distance without breaking, especially if taken out & set down on the ground regularly. We have gone for more durable quality & instead of wheels have carpet runner plastic covering the entire internal carpet & the boxes slide nicely in & out on it. 5 large boxes (included) under the bed, two types. 3 larger at the back ’north/south’ & two slightly smaller & lidded east/west closest to the door. These two extend beyond the end of the bed by approx 100mm & make a great shelf for a cup of coffee in bed, somewhere to put a torch at night, but best of all a solid hand rest at just the right height to make getting down off the bed far easier for our ageing knees & backs. Most of the space in the 5 boxes we use for our ‘stock’ food – staples, dry foods, veg which don’t need refrigeration & canned goods to get us through extended times away from civilisation. With this, plus the contents of the fridge & freezer & a bit more in the Patrol we can easily go 8 weeks provided we  can top up with water somewhere within a max of 3 to 4 weeks. Not once have we ever had to move on just because we were at risk of running out of water. Default practice is always to top up where we can if the water is good & we don’t know where the next will be. 1 of the 5 boxes we reserve for our camp fire cooking kit (not included) – grill, camp oven etc There is a little extra, but hard to get to space behind & above the wheel arches at both sides of the underbed boxes. We have utilised this for things collected along the way that we won’t use but don’t wish to dispose of. Surprises we found when we arrived home. Eg. Collected ‘mementoes’ of places. 
  • At the end of the bed three things get stored on the ’step’ whilst driving & removed when we stop. All are held securely in place in even the roughest conditions by the stowed tent inside the hatch when the hatch is closed. On one side is the toilet. A porta potti inside a custom made canvas carry bag. (We enjoy an open air loo with a view in good weather when camped alone). When there is a need for privacy we either use the Tvan as a viewing barrier or have the toilet inside the tent. (See later for info on the included ‘en suite’ we left at home). On the other side is what we call our ‘kitchen box. If you could become excited about storage boxes this would be the one! An Expedition 134 box.  Great design in many ways. I had a bit to do with the design 🙂   We store our pots & pans, taller bottles of oil, various kitchen implements etc in it. First thing we do when open up the Tvan is to take it out & place next to the kitchen side wheel, where it remains until we move on. Dingo proof, waterproof, ant  proof, doubles as a stand for the bucket we wash up in, doubles as an extra seat for visitors, & doubles as a step to reach things. We haven’t decided whether we want to keep it yet or include it yet. Depends on whether it will be useful in our next vehicle.  But our arms could be twisted to include it if you wanted to buy the Tvan & Patrol together. 🙂  Between the loo & the ‘kitchen box’ we store our multi use 20 litre buckets with any last minute or damp stuff stored in them. Once in a while a carton of beer fits here too & slowly diminishes in size as cans, a couple at a time are added to the fridge. 

Awnings etc

  • We have a comprehensive selection of factory option awnings, but unlike many folk who love the various possibilities available our preference is for a simpler camping style.
  • We prefer a basic 4wd type ‘bag awning’ . Ours is a Supa Peg brand, not one of the short lifespan cheapies. It is mounted using custom made stainless mounts from ‘Baron’ a well respected Tvan owner who has produced a number of batches over several years for fellow Tvan owners. He no longer makes them but they remain in great demand. His partner, Connie, administers the popular Facebook Tvan owners group. Tvan Owners & Lovers  Although we left most of our awnings etc at home when we were travelling we posted what we did have with us home after we bought & fitted the Supa peg. It has 3 walls which are interchangeable & which zip on which makes it all quite flexible & adaptable to conditions. It is also easily removable & fits inside the Tvan on the bed if a track is so tight it risks ripping it off. We have only needed to do that once & it was an easy task & same to re-fit it.
  • The Manufacturer ‘awnings’ we have are the ‘main awning, a full length side awning which covers from in front of the kitchen to the end of the tent. & one end wall for it. It is the same heavy canvas as the tent. Some folk love them. We have only ever put it up once. I think it took around 20 to 30 minutes with more poles, rafters & ropes than I can be bothered with, but to be fair it did id did provide good coverage, & was improved by also fitting the ’Tvan skirt’ which attaches to the Tvan with snap fasteners in all the right places on the Tvan’s exterior. A draught excluder to block off the space underneath the Tvan. 
  • Then there is the ‘Quick Sail awning’. A lightweight but tough triangular awning which can be erected in multiple ways to suit the prevailing conditions. We had an extra section made for ours which can be used or left off, & which can provide extra protection to the kitchen from driving rain. This was the one we sent home after getting the Supapeg awning.
  • Next is the ‘Ensuite’  – This zips on around the door area on the opposite side to the kitchen and provides privacy as a shower/toilet tent directly accessible from inside the Tvan tent at night. Many folk leave it attached to the tent (minus it’s single ‘spreader pole’) when they pack up the tent so it’s just there ready to go each time they put the tent up.
  • One we do still use regularly is the flyscreen. When camping without the tent deployed (as we often do) this one elasticates around the opening to keep out flies, mozzies & midgees. It slips on quickly & easily & has a zippered door in the middle of it. 
  • This collection of Manufacturer made awnings, which came with our Tvan when we bought it have never been used by us more than once or twice so are in ‘as new’ condition.  Cost to purchase them from the manufacturer would be several thousand dollars. 
  • The other we often use is one we had made for us. We call it the privacy screen & tropical roof. With the rear hatch open is fits into a sailtrack on the bottom of the door & extends down to where it attaches with elastic loops to the sides of the half folded floor. Quick & easy & lightweight for when a bit of extra privacy is required or as a windbreak when the wind is blowing into the Tvan. With the tent deployed & the privacy screen in its sail track it can be utilised as an effective ‘tropical roof’ over the top of the tent canvas, an air gap maintained with a strategically placed ‘pool noodle’ which keeps the interior of the tent significantly cooler in very hot weather. 
  • With two tent poles & a purposely acquired spreader pole we can have the window cover both open & providing shade without need for any ropes & pegs. Simple, quick & very effective, even when windy. Another tip copied from a fellow Tvan owner. 
  • All of these awnings etc will be included with the Tvan  

Thanks for reading


Cuppa & MrsTea.