Back from the wrong side of the world after my 7 week visit I find myself swamped with demo's, support tickets and write-ups, I have just managed to catch-up!
My trip was rewarding and challenging in equal measure, I took on the mammoth 50 day trip with the intention of having my girlfriend join me for a 2 week break mid trip, which would break up the work load nicely. As things transpired, due to the Icelandic volcano; she never made it. I was left stranded in Melbourne, trying to fill time without spending too much money whilst also trying to console Louise. Louise and I had planned a lovely trip in which we were to take in Sydney, Melbourne and the Great Coast Road, alas I found myself alone a long way from home, having to eat alone in restaurants, or in my hotel :-(.
I was so glad to get back to work, seeing new and existing customers; I just love seeing the variation in metal casters and their plant and equipment. I saw my first Desamatic production line on this trip; Wow what an impressive piece of kit that was, integrated pouring, shake out and sand reclaim.
On the smaller scale I visited a die caster who produced parts for mobile phones and MP3 players, where I saw the smallest casting I had ever seen. This casting was approximately 2mm tall and 1mm wide, it had 2 holes in, astonished by its size i asked if I could keep an example, and they kindly let me put one or two in my shirt pocket. It took me an age to retrieve as it was so small it had fallen into the seams!! Even more astonishing was the fact that the hole was tapped with an M1 thread! on a lovingly crafter auto-tapping machine which processes some 10,000 a day - most impressive.
Returning home was an absolute joy as I had left North Wales before Spring had sprung, with no leaves on the tress and the climate was decidedly 'late winter'; coming back mid May North Wales was bursting with life, it was so green and the weather was lovely. Surprisingly for the UK the weather has been fantastic and we are having one of the bast summers for many a year.
My Camper van will be having a few outings this year and we have already planned 3 trips away in 'Bertha'...
She's a 1972 Type 2 Bay Window (Low Indicator Square back-lights for the Camper nerds out there), I bought her for Louise's 25th birthday some years ago and after using her for a bit spent 2 years restoring her. Boy that was a big task, replaced the entire bottom six inches with new metal, and also replaced the entire front panel. My MIG welding skills were improved enormously during this time! we then used her for about 4 years with trips around Wales, Cornwall & Scotland. She has been away over the last winter having a new carb, and a few repairs. I will be tackling the entire suspension system over the coming weeks, replacing the shocks, anti-roll bars and wheel bearings, I will also be lowering her just a few inches to improve her looks, can't wait to get stuck in!.
Happy camping folks!