Another la strada Regent L

I would regard myself as a new owner even though we’ve had two REGENT Ls. After about a years happy ownership of a two berth model, another model came on Alan Kerr’s forecourt with the upper bunk….I was over-ruled as usual. But have since enjoyed top bed model which was actually a year older.

BEDDING STOWAGE….In the two berth model we stuffed raskelfs and pillows in the overcab space and still had room for sleeping bags in the top lockers, in the four bed version the stowage is limited but we’ve used a large travelling holdall which fits behind the passenger seat, the bed will just about clip up to the roof with the raskelfs left rolled out and the ladder laid in the middle. After some serious yoga contortions we prefer to sleep heads over the front seats. The lower bunk passenger seat needs restuffing with high density foam, the previous owners had beautiful blue leather upholstery which needs several layers of under blanket to prevent sliding.

TV…. The previous owners had a folding bracket mounted over the stove. The stove itself has a glass lid. Wiring for the sat-box and screen has been led down from the antenna; the box sits in the cupboard immediately above the stove and the monitor screen clips back. I’ve lashed it with bungee elastics, reasoning that unless you wanted to rig the screen every evening this is the only place to rig the set; obviously we used the existing wiring. To prop the screen on the table would mean having cables across the living area. The dish seems to take an age to lock onto the satellite, I’m not sure if the search pattern requires extra battery power we have in fact got two 110 ah leisure batteries.

WINDSCREEN….Unlike later models our 1990 version  hasn’t got steps either side of the radiator grill to aid cleaning.  I find I’m driving most of the time with the sun visor down as my glazed old eyes can’t cope with the glare.

STEERING WHEEL BOSS….I realise in the perfect world the vehicle should be parked with the automatic drive in “P”….but often when I’m shunting the van I have to duck down to appreciate the drive position – this indicator dial is not easily seen….please Mercedes not all your drivers are six footers.

SINK TAP….I’ve used a short length of knicker elastic to lash the lever to the spout, we have accidentally operated the tap several times. The sinks make handy little lockers for ready use items.

POWER PATCHES….We have convenient sockets at both ends of the work top but I use a four ganger socket patch with about 2m of cable to use the remoska outside the van (weather permitting)

SHOWER ROOM….Those previous owners had this little space nicely refurbished with a sturdy wooden grating in the shower tray and a modern corning sink. We wouldn’t be the only motorhomers to use this room as a glory hole….en route ours houses the silver screens, the guitar, sacks of dog food ,cases of wine, laundry buckets etc. etc. We even stow things in there we regularly forget like towels, toilet gear, clogs.

WHEELS….Those rich previous owners had the wheels re-enamelled, on the previous model the wheels would have needed similar work. We had several rust areas rubbed down and repainted, but this model has been beautifully re-sprayed.

ENGINE….Now beneath that shiny bonnet there’s a tangle of electronics and a large diesel engine. To date it propels the van as required. I’m reliably informed that these engines do need 30 mins or so to warm up after which it runs well, I’ve calculated that driven smoothly we can expect roughly 29 mpg.

BRAKES ETC….my local garage services a fleet of sprinters, whilst this vehicle has less than 62000 miles on the clock it will need new discs and pads when I put it in for it’s Spring refit. I’m reasoning the pitting and rust maybe because we live near the coast and that that the vehicle hasn’t been used constantly. However it has been fitted with two expensive pairs of tyres….perhaps those previous owners really did consider “full timing” somewhere warm and sunny where replacements might not be easily found.

Tony Sheather