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Subject: Prattline Caravans
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21 Feb 2010 4:13 p.m. Alert 
Hello Gordon, I have just joined this forum and I'm looking at buying a Prattline 15' van due to low carport problems (1.85)! I have noticed that you have (or did) have a copy of the service manual for the hydraulic system for these vans! To assist me working out possible suppliers and problems, I'm wondering if you could forward a copy of what you have please. I would be interested to know if there is any other brand vans that lower to bellow 1.85m as well? My email address is steptoe_1@bigpond.com

I look forward to your reply. Cheers, John

26 Feb 2010 9:37 p.m. Alert 
i have recently bought a 15ft prattline low tow. The hydraulics are leaking on the upholstery when it raised or lowered. This is occuring at the top of the bottom sectionh . I have taken it in for a quote to get the orings replaced on all four rams. I am incabable of doing it myself. has any of you fellows had this done? what would i expect to pay?. The system works either manually or from a 12volt electric.
I use coolant in the system not oil/water mixture.
I enjoy reading all the points of interestin this forum.

02 Mar 2010 7:51 p.m. Alert 
Hi Greg,

I haven't done that repair myself but I am told/read that it is a time consuming one to do. A long time ago I spoke to a dealer who was steering clear of Prattlines because he got stung with a trade-in that needed all the hydraulics done up. His words (and I cant verify it either way) was that the repair cost him $1,300. There were earlier posts on how to repair the hydraulics and someone actually put the owners manual on the internet for those who needed it. The manual discusses how to do the fix. I'd be giving A1 Caravans in SA a call, they are very helpful especially if you don't live in SA and cant get to call into their repair/sales yard.

I'm just wondering if the 12 volt pump overpressurised the rams and you ended up popping the o ring seals - my one has a manual pump only.


05 Mar 2010 11:18 p.m. Alert 
Hi everyone
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on their caravan roof......

I can get 280 watt panels for $2 a watt direct from the factory.....$560 per panel.

This means I can save everyone over $600 to $700 per panel.

The only catch is I need to find other people
to want some large solar panels also.

as the factory has a minim amounts limits.

I currently manufacture Polycore panel in China and I import it into Australia.
so it is not a problem for me to bring in the solar panels.



07 Mar 2010 3:13 p.m. Alert 
I recently had my rams serviced by A1 Caravans and it cost me $360.00

29 May 2010 3:59 p.m. Alert 
I have just join this forum as I require some assistance regarding my friends prattline caravan. I'm having problems with the pump. When pumping the hand pump its tears the main seal and fuild leaks from top of pump. Has anyone got any ideas for me of how to fix. With this problem happening I can't raise the top of the caravan, does anyone know where there is a service centre/agent in Brisbane.
Wayne Gifford

29 May 2010 4:56 p.m. Alert 
Hello Wayne, I didn't end up buying a caravan so I can't help much. I only know of a bloke here in Adelaide who repairs them and when I asked questions in this forum I had some info on the hydraulic system sent to me. I could find it if it would help you! Cheers, John

29 May 2010 7:31 p.m. Alert 
I have only joined this forum today lesrat and I am trying to find out any information on the manual hydraulic pump. The one that is on the van that I am working on is leaking from the top seal. The problem that I have is when I replace that seal, along with the ones on the bottom of the pump ram the seals only last a couple of minutes before they are ripped apart. Have you any ideas of how to fix this problem if you could help I would greatly appreciate it. Also do you know of any places in Brisbane that would be able to help me with parts and accesories for this 89 model prattline
thanks Wayne

31 May 2010 11:12 a.m. Alert 

31 May 2010 11:18 a.m. Alert 
check the bore in the pump if its worn you may need a new pump

31 May 2010 7:51 p.m. Alert 
Hi Wayne,
I honestly couldn't be bothered with trying to repair a 20 year old hand pump so I bit the bullet and purchased a new replacement one from A1 Caravans in SA. It was delivered to our post box by express post in Victoria within 24 hours.

A tip, as you will be paying for postage and handling why not get the hydraulic fluid concentrate too.
Its easy to mix and to put into the reservoir - but make sure that you thoroughly clean out the reservoir with hot to boiling water and if you can blow out the lines, that will help. Bleeding the lines is not difficult just disconnect them from the bottom of the rams.
When you put them back there is a rubber sleeve that protects them from rubbing holes in them on the van chassis its most important that you check & recheck that the sleeves are in the right spots.

Pump, oil & delivery and new valve key (necessary) should not set you back more than $700.

04 Jul 2010 5:23 p.m. Alert 
Thank for you info about Hydrodlics. I have just purchased a '87 Prattline and we discovered it leaks when we travel in the rain. We have replaced seal with foam tape but this made no difference. Have you got any ideas. These would be greatfully appreciated.
Brett Torney

06 Jul 2010 9:23 p.m. Alert 
Hello Brett,
As an owner of a Prattline for 6 years now, I've had my share of experiences with leaks. When I brought the van previous owners had done the silicone quick fix everywhere trying to fix leaks.Having said that the van only leaked slightly in heavy rain

Anyway to cut a very long story short, the issues with my van were all caused by water seeping in through the horizontal joints along the aluminium cladding on the sides. I found this by chance when I
had a burst hose spraying water up the side. Incidently in my efforts to find/fix the leaks I totally re caulked the van including pulling out the windows and the door frame.

Once I sealed up the joints all the leaks went away. I took my time and ran masking tape along either side of each joint so that when I pealed off the tape it was barely noticable, I also colour matched the silicone too. Hope this helps you.

04 Sep 2010 7:34 a.m. Alert 
I have only just joined this forum and am interested in some posts made by Jaket some time ago reguarding the fitting of a 12V pump to a Pratline van Could someone be kind enough to email me the diagram / photos of the conversion. bpmtest@tpg.com.au.
Thanks....Barry McMillan

04 Sep 2010 5:32 p.m. Alert 
Barrybluebeard your email address does not work gunado

21 Sep 2010 7:26 a.m. Alert 
Hi Gunado
Thanks for replying. Could you please try my email address again, it is active.


21 Sep 2010 2:55 p.m. Alert 
Barry i still can't get your email address to work it says the domain is wrong

25 Feb 2011 6:56 p.m. Alert 
What a great forum. Im looking at buying an 18' duel axle Pratty in Adelaide to rebuild and after reading all the info in here am feeling much more confident.
Maybe we should start an SA Pratt Club?

The one I have my eye on is a sad as traded job. Her floor is rotten and the chassis has a few cracks. My plan is to remove the interior, lift the shell off the chassis. Beef up the frame and put jacked up 4x4 running gear underneath then aluminium checker plate with a floating timber floor over that.

The interior that goes back in will be tailored for just the 2 of us and though comfortable will be on the spartan side. No 240v, no TV or Microwave but heavy on batteries, refrigeration, water storage and solar.

I realise the cabin structure would never stand up to full on off road but we do enjoy getting off the beaten track. Caravan Parks are not our thing.

On the plus side the top is currently up with no support poles in place and no signs of leaks so that side of things seems all good!

26 Feb 2011 10:40 a.m. Alert 
Gday Paps we have done a fairly extensive reno on a 16'er. What you are basically proposing is a lot of work but you are obviously handy to take on a job that size. It is not difficult just time consuming and just about everything is available. Our van was in poor condition when we bought it, rams leaking and water damage to the top section, soft floor. we did not strip it out but worked around the upper cupboards with new lining and replaced a number of frames that were rotten. We recovered the seating and replaced the the double with single, new new lino and curtains. I replaced the bearing, cups and seals and new tyres. We did all the work ourselves and learnt how to service to hydraulics. I cant see why the van wouldn't stand up to some rough road stuff as long as you do not add too much weight to it, after all when travelling the upper section is supported and the center of gravity is low. The only thing I didn't do myself was the pump I had it rebuilt for $100 at Manual hydraulics at Galway Ave, Marleston (we also live in Adelaide). The ram servicing is simple and the rubbers are cheap and available from Consolidated Bearings. One thing I regret is using an inside lining with a paper type finish like that is used in new vans. It is difficult to clean off marks and is easily scratched, use a vynal or something similar it will be easier to clean if you doing dirt road touring. When raising and lowering make sure that the top section is level as the nylon guides can break and the top becomes unstable and bend the rams (as my son found out). Use the Castrol Clear edge oil as suggest in an earlier post A1 Caravans promote themselves as Prattline repairers I didn't use them as they were too expensive for me. Good luck


08 Aug 2011 1:00 p.m. Alert 
Hello All,

I am considering purchasing a prattline low tow and know very little about them. I would be interested views on the pros and cons, what to look for when buying one and any other useful information.
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