Subaru camping conversions for ballies!





Results 1 to 20 of 36

Hybrid View

Previous Post Previous Post   Next Post Next Post
  1. #1
    Join Date
    Aug 2013
    Location
    Durban
    Age
    66
    Posts
    17
    Thanked: 0

    Default Subaru camping conversions for ballies!

    My wife and I want to do some longer trips - sometimes staying just overnight, or a couple of days- camping all the way in our "sedate" Subaru Forester. . We used to have a Hilux which had masses of space and could carry everything plus even stuff we would never use!

    We are both 65yrs old and so conversions have to facilitate that, i.e no strenuous lifting of jerry cans, spare wheels etc and stuff on to roof rack etc (my superman days are over now!)

    Has anyone done any innovative camping conversions? Nothing permanent so that vehicle reverts to normal when we get back home.

    I am talking about easily accessible packing/storage space and methods, fridge, LED and solar charging/batteries. Roof top tent or not? Awning ideas etc. Also where to put spare wheel so it is accessible because once you have packed u the vehicle, the wheel is inaccessible without unpacking and repacking (can one get a two hitch attachment?). Jerry can, water container etc.

    We will be wanting to go to Namibia/Botswana/Zimbabwe/Mozambique - clearly not harder off roading like we used to do in our Hilux!

    Any ideas out there?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Location
    Edenvale
    Age
    43
    Posts
    1,443
    Thanked: 101

    Default Re: Subaru camping conversions for ballies!

    Sounds like you need a camping trailer like a Jurgens XT75
    Geoff Craig
    '09 Toyota Fortuner 3.0 D-4D 4x4 (M)
    '10 Conqueror Comfort

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Location
    Friemersheim, Southern Cape
    Age
    58
    Posts
    4,447
    Thanked: 3559

    Default Re: Subaru camping conversions for ballies!

    Some has done just that via a google search.

    https://www.twodustytravelers.com/su...rester-camper/
    Robert van den Berg

    1998 Daihatsu Rocky 'The Kitty'
    2002 Daihatsu Rocky 'The Bully'

    'The danger comes from hankering for normalcy again, rather than getting on with working out how to deal with whatever is ahead.' - CNN article

  4. The Following 2 Users Say Thank You to Prof For This Useful Post:


  5. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Location
    George
    Age
    45
    Posts
    2,264
    Thanked: 558

    Default Re: Subaru camping conversions for ballies!

    Search Youtube for SUV camper conversions. Lots of very useful ideas.
    I would say the first thing would be some sort of drawer system custom made to fit your equipment. One of the drawers should contain your kitchen.
    Tyrannosaurus R5 and a second hand British Tata
    Quote Originally Posted by 2beFree View Post
    Jan your signature says it all

  6. #5
    Join Date
    Aug 2013
    Location
    Durban
    Age
    66
    Posts
    17
    Thanked: 0

    Default Re: Subaru camping conversions for ballies!

    Quote Originally Posted by Prof View Post
    Some has done just that via a google search.

    https://www.twodustytravelers.com/su...rester-camper/
    I saw this - earlier - some great ideas - but I am looking sof stuff that one can easily get in SA

  7. #6
    Join Date
    Aug 2013
    Location
    Durban
    Age
    66
    Posts
    17
    Thanked: 0

    Default Re: Subaru camping conversions for ballies!

    Quote Originally Posted by Wave View Post
    Sounds like you need a camping trailer like a Jurgens XT75
    No trailer! cuz I will trail my little boat sometimes - but not always. Also, prefer to be without trailer

  8. #7
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Location
    Friemersheim, Southern Cape
    Age
    58
    Posts
    4,447
    Thanked: 3559

    Default Re: Subaru camping conversions for ballies!

    Quote Originally Posted by ziggy View Post
    Also where to put spare wheel so it is accessible because once you have packed u the vehicle, the wheel is inaccessible without unpacking and repacking (can one get a two hitch attachment?).
    Our daughter can attest to that problem...

    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	Screenshot from 2019-06-17 17-22-58.png 
Views:	333 
Size:	619.5 KB 
ID:	531161
    Robert van den Berg

    1998 Daihatsu Rocky 'The Kitty'
    2002 Daihatsu Rocky 'The Bully'

    'The danger comes from hankering for normalcy again, rather than getting on with working out how to deal with whatever is ahead.' - CNN article

  9. The Following User Says Thank You to Prof For This Useful Post:


  10. #8
    Join Date
    Mar 2019
    Location
    Pretoria
    Posts
    31
    Thanked: 13

    Default Re: Subaru camping conversions for ballies!

    You have an interesting project ahead of you, and I trust you will share the outcome thereof with us.

    I am the proud owner of a 2008 Forester 2.5XS, that has taken us to many off-the-map destinations in South Africa. I have previously written about this vehicle on this Forum, trying to make the point that, with the capabilities of the Forester, it became difficult for us to decide whether to use this vehicle or our 110 Defender 2.5Tdi County whenever we planned a trip.

    The main issue with the Forester was its 60-litre fuel tank, which provides you with a 600km range. Tienie Bester of Subaru did a overland trip to Angola in around 2007, where they fitted an auxiliary fuelvtank in the spare wheel well, and elected to strap the spare wheel on the lightweight roof rack. My thinking has been to fit a carrier arm to the rear of the vehicle, because I have an inherent dislike of roof racks.

    What I would suggest is to be very careful in adding unnecessary weight to the car, i.e. skid plates or protectors. Maybe the self-levelling shocks could be replaced with better (e.g. off-road racing) shocks. The only other modification required would be a Hella plug for a small Engel fridge, and a couple of USB ports to charge your cell phones and electronic equipment.

    Concerning your packing list, keep to what you cannot do without, instead of packing what you would like to have. A medical kit, spade, tyre compressor and tow-rope are non-negotiable.

    If you could get in touch with Tienie Bester of Subaru, he could be in a good position to advise you on converting your Forester into a good overlander

  11. #9
    Join Date
    Aug 2013
    Location
    Durban
    Age
    66
    Posts
    17
    Thanked: 0

    Default Re: Subaru camping conversions for ballies!

    Quote Originally Posted by HW Short View Post
    You have an interesting project ahead of you, and I trust you will share the outcome thereof with us.

    I am the proud owner of a 2008 Forester 2.5XS, that has taken us to many off-the-map destinations in South Africa. I have previously written about this vehicle on this Forum, trying to make the point that, with the capabilities of the Forester, it became difficult for us to decide whether to use this vehicle or our 110 Defender 2.5Tdi County whenever we planned a trip.

    The main issue with the Forester was its 60-litre fuel tank, which provides you with a 600km range. Tienie Bester of Subaru did a overland trip to Angola in around 2007, where they fitted an auxiliary fuelvtank in the spare wheel well, and elected to strap the spare wheel on the lightweight roof rack. My thinking has been to fit a carrier arm to the rear of the vehicle, because I have an inherent dislike of roof racks.

    What I would suggest is to be very careful in adding unnecessary weight to the car, i.e. skid plates or protectors. Maybe the self-levelling shocks could be replaced with better (e.g. off-road racing) shocks. The only other modification required would be a Hella plug for a small Engel fridge, and a couple of USB ports to charge your cell phones and electronic equipment.

    Concerning your packing list, keep to what you cannot do without, instead of packing what you would like to have. A medical kit, spade, tyre compressor and tow-rope are non-negotiable.
    hing heavey
    If you could get in touch with Tienie Bester of Subaru, he could be in a good position to advise you on converting your Forester into a good overlander
    I have to trim down my Hilux camping list for sure. Yes, trim down weight as much as possible and not add extra stuff - roof rack is ok provided there is nothing heavy placed there - and I dont like a roof top tent. I am looking for a carrier arm for the spare wheel - on the roof rack it will be way too much for me to deal with being in the upper 60's and recently had a heart bypass!

    Where is Tineie based - I am in Durban

    I am also interested in innvative ways of packing etc.....will search the forum here as well as general google.

  12. #10
    Join Date
    Aug 2013
    Location
    Durban
    Age
    66
    Posts
    17
    Thanked: 0

    Default Re: Subaru camping conversions for ballies!

    Quote Originally Posted by prof View Post
    our daughter can attest to that problem...

    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	Screenshot from 2019-06-17 17-22-58.png 
Views:	333 
Size:	619.5 KB 
ID:	531161
    exactly!!!!!

  13. #11
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Location
    Friemersheim, Southern Cape
    Age
    58
    Posts
    4,447
    Thanked: 3559

    Default Re: Subaru camping conversions for ballies!

    @Ziggy

    My take on this.

    • Roofrack specifically for four 10l Steel Jerrycans (easier to handle)
    • Rear bumper bracket for sparewheel, no way getting round that one. You need to find an engineering shop to make that.
    • Double drawer system as per article.
    • All other equipment on platform. Assuming camping on the ground
    • Larger tyres an option, what works for the Subaru


    https://www.makro.co.za/hardware-aut...yABEgL47vD_BwE

    My 2cw
    Robert van den Berg

    1998 Daihatsu Rocky 'The Kitty'
    2002 Daihatsu Rocky 'The Bully'

    'The danger comes from hankering for normalcy again, rather than getting on with working out how to deal with whatever is ahead.' - CNN article

  14. #12
    Join Date
    Mar 2019
    Location
    Pretoria
    Posts
    31
    Thanked: 13

    Default Re: Subaru camping conversions for ballies!

    If the spare wheel well could be used for the auxiliary fuel tank, complete with its piping and electrics, there is no requirement for additional fuel containers, e.g. jerry cans. With the spare wheel on the carrier arm on the back of the vehicle, perhaps a second tyre only (without rim) could be carried inside the vehicle. The use of Wolfpack containers eliminate the need for a drawer system, which means that, in an emergency, two persons could sleep inside the vehicle with the rear seats folded down. As such there is also no need for a roof rack, which helps with fuel consumption.

    I guess Tienie Bester is still in the South African Subaru dealer fraternity, previously he was with Subaru Centurion, but he could now be based in the Western Cape.

  15. #13
    Join Date
    Aug 2013
    Location
    Durban
    Age
    66
    Posts
    17
    Thanked: 0

    Default Re: Subaru camping conversions for ballies!

    Quote Originally Posted by Prof View Post
    @Ziggy

    My take on this.

    • Roofrack specifically for four 10l Steel Jerrycans (easier to handle)
    • Rear bumper bracket for sparewheel, no way getting round that one. You need to find an engineering shop to make that.
    • Double drawer system as per article.
    • All other equipment on platform. Assuming camping on the ground
    • Larger tyres an option, what works for the Subaru


    https://www.makro.co.za/hardware-aut...yABEgL47vD_BwE

    My 2cw
    roof racks a definite - Also thought of a roof basket carrier - or one of those pods
    10l jerry cans - the obvious solution!!!
    rear bumper bracket - yes, I thought the only way is to get one made
    drawers sound good
    yes, camping on the ground
    will investigate the tyres thing - although I dont really intend being overly adventurous in terms of roads!

  16. #14
    Join Date
    Aug 2013
    Location
    Durban
    Age
    66
    Posts
    17
    Thanked: 0

    Default Re: Subaru camping conversions for ballies!

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZMF4eGBLHsA

    Spare wheel thing - too drastic!

  17. #15
    Join Date
    Jan 2017
    Location
    Durban
    Age
    60
    Posts
    633
    Thanked: 910

    Default Re: Subaru camping conversions for ballies!

    Subscribed

  18. #16
    Join Date
    Sep 2011
    Location
    Johannesburg
    Age
    59
    Posts
    537
    Thanked: 131

    Default Re: Subaru camping conversions for ballies!

    Wow Ziggy, respect - pretty much the ultimate overlanding challenge. Weight, speed space and within the context of that combo - strength (wsss). Here is an alternative way of thinking about it - taking into account the ride.

    Everyone knows - in perfect weather any camping system is perfect. Come rain and wind - even a 2hr storm - if that is not taken care of - disaster and chaos reigns - especially when ground tenting. Seen it all too often.

    So to my mind the main challenge is to overcome the bad weather (rain and wind combo) challenge and having done that everything else will fall into place.

    You will be working out the back of the car and that is also where you probably will want the good old table and two chairs. So the priority is a canopy over the back. Wsss wise I reckon the 1.5 m eezi-awn canopy made for the back of a vehicle is the way to go (worthwhile investment) and light enough to be innovative re mounting if necessary. Great product. This, if an easy to open close batwing is not an option re cost, weight and mounting challenges.

    When it comes to ground tents it makes sense to have the entrance positioned just under/close to the back awning. But what tent? Ideal for two people is the tentco 2.5 x 2.5 by 1.8m high canvas dome. Two alu strechers fit easily with and adequate walkway standup area in the middle. Also the best bad weather tent by far. But it requires to much muscle work for us old ballies. Same with the oztent equivalent which also has to be carried on the roof. So it is a nylon equivalent dome of the same or close to the same dimensions. Can get a campmaster one at Macro. Got one some time back as a backup and very nice. Is still work though but not a train smash. Perhaps best is a coleman easy up of close to above dimensions. Least work. Secret with nylons is they must be well pegged and guyroped - that work cant be avoided but is OK. Secret just take your time setting up and packing up - no race involved. Can also use a cargo net (from outdoor w house) over the tent as an extra tie down if hectic weather starts to move in.

    Accept nylons can leak so wax/spray seams etc , sleep off the ground (alu stretchers), use a shade cloth outer ground sheet, put in an extra inner waterproof ground sheet on top of built in ground sheet and have some towels handy for a bit of wiping up/drip catching if needed.

    Outside awning over door of nylon tents if it comes with the tent is pretty useless in rainy windy weather no matter how taught you try to make it - tie it over the eezi awn awning or fold up out the way.

    Thats pretty much it - further refinements will only come from trying the system out over time.

    Hope this helps in the thinking.

  19. The Following User Says Thank You to Roadman For This Useful Post:


  20. #17
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    Simons Town
    Age
    70
    Posts
    134
    Thanked: 1

    Default Re: Subaru camping conversions for ballies!

    Quote Originally Posted by ziggy View Post
    My wife and I want to do some longer trips - sometimes staying just overnight, or a couple of days- camping all the way in our "sedate" Subaru Forester. . We used to have a Hilux which had masses of space and could carry everything plus even stuff we would never use!

    We are both 65yrs old and so conversions have to facilitate that, i.e no strenuous lifting of jerry cans, spare wheels etc and stuff on to roof rack etc (my superman days are over now!)

    Has anyone done any innovative camping conversions? Nothing permanent so that vehicle reverts to normal when we get back home.

    I am talking about easily accessible packing/storage space and methods, fridge, LED and solar charging/batteries. Roof top tent or not? Awning ideas etc. Also where to put spare wheel so it is accessible because once you have packed u the vehicle, the wheel is inaccessible without unpacking and repacking (can one get a two hitch attachment?). Jerry can, water container etc.

    We will be wanting to go to Namibia/Botswana/Zimbabwe/Mozambique - clearly not harder off roading like we used to do in our Hilux!

    Any ideas out there?
    I went to Northern Namibia this May/June with some friends whose Saburu was really nicely kitted out for the trip. In the rear boot photo you can see (Left to Right) the Fridge on Runners, New Spare Wheel location, and Dual Battery System. Vehicle performed very well. Drawers on back seat. Personally I loved the chosen relocation of the spare wheel which is easy to lift out.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Click image for larger version. 

Name:	IMG_0289 AAA.jpg 
Views:	102 
Size:	335.7 KB 
ID:	531930   Click image for larger version. 

Name:	IMG_2130BBB.jpg 
Views:	86 
Size:	336.2 KB 
ID:	531931  
    Nissan Navara 2.5Tdi D/C 2010
    Alucab, Longrange fuel tanks, 2nd spare wheel, TJM suspension 50/55mm lift, Sat/Nav/Revcamera,
    Dual battery system
    Former car: Mahindra 2007 Scorpio 4x4 SUV2.6GLX

  21. #18
    Join Date
    Jul 2016
    Location
    Walkerville
    Posts
    4
    Thanked: 1

    Default Re: Subaru camping conversions for ballies!

    Hi.

    I drive an S-Edition Forester and have something similar in mind for mine.

    I bought the Thule XL basket and roof rail system for storage on the roof. I went this route because I didn't want the rails removed and replaced with the Front Runner system although I'm sure it is much stronger.

    I then had an awning made by a place in Edenvale and bought some tent poles and pegs from Tentco. I'm using a swimming pool aluminium extendable pole to secure it to the Thule Basket but then using the thick heavy duty ties to secure it to the Thule basket loops. I had it made 2,5mX2,5m in size.

    I know there is a guy that does a sump guard for the Forester. As far as I know it's pretty straight forward to install using the factory connection points.

    Would like to see some pictures of your progress as you go along.

    Regards


    Mike

  22. #19
    Join Date
    Aug 2013
    Location
    Durban
    Age
    66
    Posts
    17
    Thanked: 0

    Default Re: Subaru camping conversions for ballies!

    I have been doing some thinking and have come up with this.....
    Go small and light on EVERYTHING! Take nothing unnecessary. The less we take the less there is to clean pack etc – the less work to be done


    Should be able to have set up camp in 30 minutes max – and pack up in more or less the same time


    Fridge freezer must be as small as possible (thinking of a Dometic CFX 28 AC/DC Fridge/Freezer which weighs 17.5kg and is 62 x 34,2 x 42,5 (h) cm – with a 26l capacity. More than enough for two of us for a few days. Fridge placed behind the driver set – and dual battery unit on the floor behind the centre console if it fits, otherwise behind passenger seat)


    Small 3-4 person quick erect tent where you can at least almost stand up


    Light weight but efficient stove and pots and pans and utensils, crockery, cutlery etc. Kind of like a few steps above mountaineering style (I used to be a mountaineer)


    No piles of clothes and things - 2 small bags each. Enough for 5 or 6 days without having to wash clothes


    Try and “box” everything that is packed into the car, that way you can stay organised.


    Everything to be easily accessible. Arrive at a campsite, remove tent and bedding from roof rack and erect. Kitchen area in back of vehicle with everything ready at hand – no unpacking


    Pull out awning on roof rack. Place table and chairs


    LED lighting installed in kitchen area with extension to tent (must have two battery system for lights and fridge)


    Try and be self-sufficient in terms of food or 5-6 days


    Try and go places where extra fuel is not required – but make provision for carrying 2x10l containers n the roof rack


    Carry no more than 20 l of drinking water if possible


    For the back packing area (kitchen and spare-wheel) the idea is as in the diagram below – obviously still have to measure and proportion correctly. I will first assemble everything that we will be taking and see how it fits (food excluded) – then draw up a final plan. I thought of using plywood (as light as possible) but sturdy enough. Instead of drawers, find appropriately sized plastic containers to slot into shelves. The only slide out drawer will be the stove drawer.

    Once the spare wheel has been relocated, then there will be ample space to use the spare wheel area for additional packing (but careful not to put too much weight at the back)
    I need to investigate how to ensure that everything is tied down and safe inside the car.

    The challenge is now to convince the wife that this is necessary. She still has the idea that we will be staying in B&B’s mainly!!!!

    I will still have to do a costing as well. I want this to be ready for our first trip by early next year – there are other things planned this year
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Click image for larger version. 

Name:	overview.JPG 
Views:	72 
Size:	119.7 KB 
ID:	532030   Click image for larger version. 

Name:	back view.JPG 
Views:	63 
Size:	100.8 KB 
ID:	532031  

  23. #20
    Join Date
    Aug 2013
    Location
    Durban
    Age
    66
    Posts
    17
    Thanked: 0

    Default Re: Subaru camping conversions for ballies!

    Quote Originally Posted by Jerrycan View Post
    I went to Northern Namibia this May/June with some friends whose Saburu was really nicely kitted out for the trip. In the rear boot photo you can see (Left to Right) the Fridge on Runners, New Spare Wheel location, and Dual Battery System. Vehicle performed very well. Drawers on back seat. Personally I loved the chosen relocation of the spare wheel which is easy to lift out.
    Phew! That's a big fridge.... The drawers on the back seat sound like a good idea. I like the spare wheel placement. I am reluctant to trail anything other than my small boat

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
  •