Well, here we go again; another trip coming up in the Tardis , our VW T5 Campervan. This time however, the Tardis will be more of a T5 Transporter than Campervan, as we’ll have an extra passenger in Mrs Aussie’s Mum.
The trip with “the Mum” has highlighted what we seem to take for granted; that the step into the Tardis is a fairly tall one. Perhaps it was time to get ourselves a little portable step? Looking around I couldn’t see anything that fills our usual criteria of items readily integrating into the van & ideally having dual roles? (Our Tardis is deceptively spacious but can’t match its namesake!)
Another thing I’ve been meaning to do, is setup a support frame or such for when carrying a Brompton in the passenger area. Robinson fits neatly under the bed in the rear but Ralph usually just lays on the floor in the rear passenger area with some packing under the Alfine rear hub to avoid the pointy acorn axle nut digging into the floor. (Robinson is a rack model Brompton & when laid on the side, the rack/Ezi wheels & the MKS removable pedal adapter (with pedal removed) become three points of contact with the floor & makes for a stable package. Ralph has no rack & the wider rear frame with Alfine hub becomes one contact point, along with the MKS pedal adapter & Ezi wheel.)
After pondering the separate issues of T5 step & Ralph’s support system, I realised I could combine everything. I found that my wooden work stand was a good size for a step (albeit not really stable enough) & that the handle bar support legs where ideally placed for supporting a Brompton frame. Turning to my stock of timber off-cuts I then constructed some “support boxes” that would become leg supports for the step, supports for keeping Ralph’s acorn axle nut off the floor & also a seat protection pad for when using the work stand in its original role.
Enough of trying to explain all this in words, let’s see some piccies of the work stand in a multi-use way – step, mobile stand & support cradle (& when not in use can be stacked on the side door sill beside the sliding door).
Hopefully that’s all made sense, although perhaps I should clarify:
The work stand fits any of my bikes & usually sits in the garage but I’ve often missed it while on a trip. Now, with the recent Aldi purchase of a work stand, my mobile work stand may stay in the Tardis?
I don’t expect to carry both “the Mum” & Ralph on the next trip (Ralph will stay home & other bikes will be on our rear bike carrier).