DISCOvering the Great North Road





Results 1 to 11 of 11
  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2013
    Location
    Johannesburg
    Age
    67
    Posts
    15
    Thanked: 0

    Default DISCOvering the Great North Road

    I am planning an 8 wk bucket-list trip following ‘the road much less travelled' from Jhb to Uganda starting in mid Aug and am looking to use a 2007 Disco 3 TVD6 SE (180k on the clock).
    I am no stranger to Africa bush travel (Kalahari, Mozambique and Kampala-Jhb in 2011) however I am a little apprehensive about taking such a 'high tech' vehicle into the deep stuff (eg northern Moz, west of Lake Rukwa, Katavi NP etc) where technical help for such vehicles will be very limited. Before I shell out serious cash for extra fuel tank, spare wheel carrier, drawers, winch, spare battery etc I would be interested in hearing people’s views on the reliability of the Disco and the advisability of using it for some serious, prolonged bush travel?
    Bobjest
    Growing old is mandatory but growing up is optional.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Location
    Cape Town
    Age
    63
    Posts
    10,081
    Thanked: 2611

    Default

    I am not too familiar with the Disco3 other than by reputation, but from long overland experience, the two things that invariably give the most problems are your tyres and your suspension. And both of those are related to overloading the vehicle - so before equipping the vehicle with lots of nice-to-have accessories, check out what they weigh and how much extra stress they add to the vehicle.
    The D3, afaik, can take standard offroad tyres and doesn't have to be fitted with exotic sizes - make your tyres as bog standard as you can. The most common size that you will find at roadside second hand tyre "shops" (jua kali - hot sun, in KiSwahili) is 750x16, ie 235/85x16.
    I am, again, completely unfamiliar with anything more modern than an early 1990s Land Rover, but I would guess that it would probably be a good idea to carry some kind of diagnostic kit with you, and be prepared for the eventuality that you may have to airfreight parts in from Joburg or Nairobi.
    Otherwise, I don't think there's anything stopping you!

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Location
    Windhoek
    Age
    67
    Posts
    95
    Thanked: 5

    Default

    we agree with Tony done a trip 2013
    Go for the bucket list trip Bob, our time is running out
    God blessings
    fanie

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Location
    Gaborone
    Age
    69
    Posts
    6,759
    Thanked: 964

    Default

    How far North does TuffStuff cover you?

    The rest should be manageable.
    Kalahari Safari
    ORRA Call: WB58 | ICASA ZRF430
    Nissan Patrol GU TB45
    | Nissan Safari GU TD42 | B'rakah 4x4 Trailer
    E34 - 535i for a bit of nostalgia
    E39 - 540i for the open roads

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2013
    Location
    Johannesburg
    Age
    67
    Posts
    15
    Thanked: 0

    Default

    Thanks for the thoughts and encouragement. I have been very pleased with the performance of the Disco in the bush but at times I feel a bit of a fraud given the relative luxury it offers!
    Tony - re tires, I agree that that is a problem as the Disco is fitted with 265/65 R18 which are not easy to come by but I have just put a new set of AT's on and couldn't contemplate the expense of changing them best I could do would be to consider carrying a 2nd spare.
    Fanie - you're speaking my language! Sometimes we can over think these things!
    Bobjest
    Growing old is mandatory but growing up is optional.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Mar 2013
    Location
    Johannesburg
    Age
    67
    Posts
    15
    Thanked: 0

    Default

    KalSaf - Just checked with Tuffstuff - they basically cover up to the equator, ie Uganda, Kenya and DRC which is pretty good. Am not with them currently but will almost certainly change before I head out. Thanks for the heads up...
    Bobjest
    Growing old is mandatory but growing up is optional.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jul 2013
    Location
    Cape Town
    Age
    58
    Posts
    3
    Thanked: 0

    Default

    We recently spent 4 months traveling to Ethiopia from Cape Town. I cannot comment on your vehicle but what I can advise is to have at least your alternator and starter motor checked out before you go if they haven't been replaced or fixed alreadyI.e. Taken apart and checked. We were also fortunate that we did not have a single puncture but we did carry two good spares and a tube. Also make sure your tires are not Goodyear Wranglers. I have 30000km on the rears and they need replacing soon after doing 17000km on our trip.

    Otherwise go for it and don't look back.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Location
    Cape Town
    Age
    63
    Posts
    10,081
    Thanked: 2611

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by bobjest View Post
    best I could do would be to consider carrying a 2nd spare.
    Just carry a spare casing, not the whole spare. Saves on the weight, and there are roadside tyre fix places everywhere.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Mar 2013
    Location
    Johannesburg
    Age
    67
    Posts
    15
    Thanked: 0

    Default

    Thanks Tony - if I do have the space that is what I will do.
    Bobjest
    Growing old is mandatory but growing up is optional.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    Location
    Centurion
    Age
    55
    Posts
    2,299
    Thanked: 282

    Default

    Just did a trip through Botswana and must confess the Nxai pan road is some of the thickest sand I have ever experienced. The Disco pulling a Conqueror trailer had no problem at all.
    As mentioned 2 things:
    1. Satelite phone and tuffstuff number. Also try and find out in each area you travel who will be able to assist you and get their numbers. We had a situation on our trip and the pre-loaded airtime on the sat phone runs out quickly. In the end I phoned tuffstuff and logged a claim/problem. Instead of relying on tuffstuff to find someone I phoned a guy in Maun directly to come and assist and after we got home I claimed from tuffstuff with all the details.
    2. Extra tyre/wheel very important. I decided to go for the extra wheel route since I did not want to search for someone to fit a tyre if I got a second flat in close succesion to the first.

    What I have learned on our trip. Never leave home without a 6mm airpipe connector or two, and more important is the fact that each of your air bags have a non return valve. If you suspect anything is going wrong with the air suspension but still have lift(preferably off-road height). Pull the fuse of the air suspension(think it is number 26). This will give you errors but no air will be let out of the air bags and you would be able to drive out of any situation.

    Will post more on above in my next post on our blog (www.lani4travel.com).

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Mar 2013
    Location
    Johannesburg
    Age
    67
    Posts
    15
    Thanked: 0

    Default

    Oradba - thanks for your comments. I did the Kalahari and Moremi with 5 pax + trailer last year and the Disco performed admirably - only giving me a couple of problems in the Moremi sand and then because I had got a bit cocky and didn't deflate the tires enough.
    Talking of tire pressure - I'd be interested to know what pressure you use on tar/good dirt roads? I have Goodrich AT's and when loaded usually put 2.5 in front and 2.8 in rear but I have read that higher pressures of 3.0 and more are better for hard surfaces?

    Also v interested in your comment re suspension as that is one of my fears with the disco - will keep an eye out for further comments on your blog - thanks for the heads up.
    Bobjest
    Growing old is mandatory but growing up is optional.

Similar Threads

  1. July 2012 - The road to Mossuril
    By mur2 in forum Mozambique
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 2012/10/14, 06:47 AM
  2. EA Fly - Inn Trip Report
    By Goose 23 in forum East Africa
    Replies: 0
    Last Post: 2011/11/28, 04:31 PM
  3. Where to stay in Maun?
    By piri in forum Botswana
    Replies: 29
    Last Post: 2010/07/21, 07:23 AM
  4. Namibia, Botswana and Zambia Tour
    By freeflyd in forum Namibia
    Replies: 14
    Last Post: 2010/02/04, 10:14 AM

Tags for this Thread

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •