Woo hoo! I took a quick drive to Nowra yesterday, met up with Stuart Langman (of Prestige Benchtops and Furniture) who did the mods to our Northstar van. Kaj at Nowra Canvas is just down the road and picked it up from Stu’s ready to build our new annexe. But that will be in the next lot of photos… meanwhile, back to the caravan modifications.
The main thing we wanted done was to have a washing machine installed. After travelling around Australia for a year with a washing machine, we decided it fell into the category of A Good Thing to Have.
And as luck would have it, we had the perfect spot for it. Originally, we had a computer workstation installed in the Northstar, but it failed to live up to expectations. It was too narrow, and I felt cramped working there… and worst of all I couldn’t use an external keyboard and mouse with my laptop. (If I wanted to use a mouse, I had to perch it up on the counter, which is a big strain on your arm and wrist if you keep it up for more than a few minutes. You can see in the pic below how much higher the counter is than the laptop shelf.) However… it provided the perfect space for a washing machine, and the Sphere 2.5 kg top-loading auto fitted in beautifully.
Stu called in a plumber, and an electrician to add a powerpoint above the bench (didn’t need one for the washing machine, because there were outlets in the cupboard – but I DID need one above the counter for the coffee machine). Stu did all the joinery work, and did a great job.There was a small square shelf in a corner under the overhead cupboards, to hold the satellite decoder, but it was too small for the decoder we used at home – so we asked Stu to fit a long shelf right across the space.
Here you can see the before-and-after pics, showing how the computer workstation became the washing machine space.
Here’s a closeup of the washing machine:
At first, when we were talking about putting in a washing machine, I wanted a front-loader, because the one we used on our trip around Oz worked so well. But now that I see this one, I’m glad we went with it – for a start, it will be much easier to get clothes in and out of a top-loader! And secondly (the most important thing in Rob’s eyes) is that this model weighs 18 kg, compared to over 50 kg for Dometic’s front-loader.