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New [to me] Grand Cali - Yay

Totally agree with the above when further reading. Assuming the heating is running, on electric or gas then I assume the boiler would be protected? I have also seen the wastewater tank heating mat but it does seem to keep the water unit quite warm and I wondered what kind of draw it might have.

On my drive if not using the vehicle, draining down is the safe option?

If storing at home I can't see any reason you would want to have water in the waste tank? Totally different scenario if away skiing etc & in that case the preferred option is to leave the waste tank drain valve fully open with a bucket under it. Its far easier to get a block of ice out of a bucket than it is to get the same size block out of a water tank.

If you've got the heating running then the fresh water should be ok. I would only bother if its only for a short time, more than a day or two & I would dump the water just to be safe.
In today for the tap 'diagnostic' tho This will get changed however they have not pre ordered the part but apparently 3 other 'safety' recalls to be looked at. I assume one is the skylight.

Update. It seems the tap is available so that will be fitted, the roof light repair kit is on back order so will have to wait. Pleasing service from Listers Coventry so far. I hope a return to the good days of 2011 to 2017
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Mini update, new tap fitted, skylight recall installed. All good, tap seems much better. Need to implement operation make a bit quieter in the rear with a cupboard hack, all the overheads are quiet except the middle two either side, adjusted on side and all good, did the same to the other but it causes ’popping’ during driving. Tip on here is to add tape to the retaining strip where the latch fits. I can see This as the adjustment to make it fit better does cause a lift on the latch so flex makes it easer to bounce off (its above the rear wheel)

Project Camper blinds are ace and super easy to fit in 2 mins and put away in the same.

I still have my original wheels and tyres to sell but apart from that all good.

Duvalay mattrass is a question, we need to sort a proper measure and then just organise and populate the cupboards drawers etc and do some more trips.
Maybe not exciting for most already on here but I finally picked up my GC680 after much gnashing of teeth and worry about it being the right thing after reading about so many problems on the interwebs, at least I am eyes open.

Spec not quite what I would have ordered but having been told 14-16months for a new one (if things go well) and used ones being hens teeth, the conversions I looked at not available untilQ4 2023 or early 2024 I decided to commit to a) find out if I can live with a 7m van (I thought I would not be able to go bigger than 6m) and b) cope with 'only' 2wd and try to get some adventure in now.

Picked up on Friday, away by Saturday, first couldn't get any gas as local suppliers will only swop a bottle not sell a new one, so we got quite cold Sat night! Yes I wanted the diesel E heating. Then the field was steep and a touch damp...manoeuvring to put the van in the right place resulted in the 2wd van on low rolling resistance conti's spinning on the upslope (rural Yorkshire) and immediate head wobbles for not getting 4wd.. (yes I will fit some General Grabber AT3s as soon as they arrive!)

We won't mention the no facilities site (of a friends 40th party) entrance was barely wider than the van, lined with cut trees and sticky outy branches on the inside of a super tight turns with a dry stone on the outside of the corner for good measure, oh and entrance through granite posts.... all the assist systems, park, lane, Mayfair and everything else its fitted with, around the van went off in a two tone cacophony making me feel like Maverick in Top Gun caught in missile lock by the entire 'hostile' air force. Thank god for big mirrors. It was clear, 30 yards into the hairpin tree tunnel I was going to have to reverse back out onto the the narrow dry stone wall lined road again. I made it out (big mirrors) and went in through the out entrance, still tight but more manageable. I think the Sprinter 360 view might have been handy in this situation.

At this point I was clearly having doubts but knew this 'test' was what I needed to find out if its right for us. We laughed a lot.

On the positive side, I loved going to the facilities in the middle of the night as it was cold, we had a nice cup of tea just before bed, which meant it was inevitable at my age, but it was a beautiful thing not waking up my wife or walking across the campsite amongst the revellers and braving the weekend old portaloo, I had a gentle smile of relief(sic) and smugness.

It did 32mpg, gobsmacked I was, thats close to my Beach, despite the big hills and narrow lanes. Apart from trying to get the measure of the turning radius and where my nearside front corner is it was surprisingly easy to get around b roads and small villages. Not sure how much easier a 6m van is with 0.8m less wheelbase but this was ok.

Yes I need a shower sucker (anyone got a link or recommendation for this heinous VW omission on the GC680), some gas, a proper topper; we have some Raskalfs from the Ocean/Beach which were fine for a nights sleep but leave a 12in gap in the middle of the nice big bed which meant a good nights sleep (if a little cool) but needs sorting, definitely need a smaller table. likely Calicap if I can't find a UK one that stows next to the passenger seats, probably an Ecoflow /Jackary/Bluetti as I don't want to do too much modification of extra electrics during warranty but we will be off hookup quite a bit and it doesn't have solar (I can see the leisure going down already with the fridge even though its a new one) , maybe I'll be brave enough for an ecotree LifePO4, a waste tank warmer..and all the other super useful tricks tips from the fine folk on this site. I need to adjust a couple of the airline cupboards (hinges) to reduce the rattling. Oh and a spare wheel and bike carrier.

I hope we don't have the tap issue, but I know the emergency fixes, but I will try and get a replacement anyway under the technical note/fix as it seems very weak compare to the bathroom shower head (new version and new pump looked good on an insta I saw earlier, I think the pump was a reich KTW C DVGW W270). Maybe we can just buy and fit it if the dealers won't play ball.

So really looking forward to getting out in it, finding out if it's for me at this size in the long term. I can't imagine it being much tighter than the weekends soiree and I didn't freak so hopeful :thumb

Little piccy on the drive.

Oh one last thing, it was funny when I got home, parked on the drive and blocked out all the light like a solar eclipse in front of the lounge window (parked next to the Beach) my (16 and 18yr old) kids inside apparently say to my wife 'Jesus, thats HUGE, does Dad know he's bought an RV', My wife laughed so hard I thought I might need to give her gas and air:D

Thanks to all who have replied to my sometimes inane questions on here and I hope to see you out in the wild soon.

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Love your write up, van looks great!

Looking forward to your next adventure
Thought I could share my bike rack.

The beam attaches to the hinged hitch by the two pins and lock. I have a 4 bike beam too which just swops out if needed.

The distance is set to give me flexibility to mount a rear spare wheel/hinge mounted carrier if I wanted.

The rack is designed to be very very stable (ISI carriers if interested) and used on rough roads and keep the departure angle of the vehicle in tact even though it adds length.
It’s super simple to fit bikes with no straps and no clearance issues even complex suspension (what I have). No real weight limit either except the nose weight.

My ultimate intention is to explore mountain and off-road tracks so the clearance was a key point.

After testing, if I don’t fit a spare wheel on the back I may customise the setup as ideally the receiver would be attached to/part of the towbar itself as it would be anywhere except Europe.

I had to fabricate the light bar (v1.0) as whilst there is mount it’s not a legal requirement in Oz!



It folds to the floor in one movement to open the rear doors and the receiver sticks out the same/ is the same length as the towball was, even if it doesn’t look it!