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What equipment to buy when selling the car in Mali?
In January I join the Budapest Bamako 2009. When we arrive in Bamako (Mali) we are planning to sell our car and then we will have a problem with all the expensive equipment. We probably have to sell or give away most of it. That is why I am a bit confused what to buy now before the rally. Do I really have to buy all top quality?
1. We need a compressor and when I read in the Sahara Overland I get the impression you have to have a really professional (and expensive) one. We have a Lada Niva and will drive quite a lot in sand. Can we manage this using e.g the Airstation Black & Decker or which one do you reccomend? Where can we buy affordable compressors?
2. High Lift Jack - I suppose we need one of these since the race will have some though stages. What do you think about buying the Farm Jack instead of the HiLift Jack. The Farm Jack is about half the price of the later, but is supposed to be less quality...?
Do you have any ideas what to do with all the equipment when leaving the car in Mali?
Off course things like CB-Radio, GPS and Satelite-phone we bring back home on the plane.
In an under powered Land Rover Series 2A, which benefits greatly from appropriate tyre pressures, I have only ever used a foot pump on the half a dozen Saharan trips (Libya, Niger, Algeria, Maroc) and dozen other African trips in this vehicle. The stops for increasing tyre pressure are a good break and the exercise is about all you get if you're driving hard most of the day. Just rotate the task while someone puts the kettle on.
I have also taken a high lift jack, bolted to the bumper, on every single trip. And have never used it once - even in the rainy season in Kenya, Zambia, Malawi, N.Botswana and the Congo. I can't believe that was all good luck. Go light, especially given that you're with a group.
Go light. Take a footpump a shovel and a tow rope. And if you feel you're not making it trough, give up early (press the clutch), clear the sand around the wheels, and reverse out to try somewhere else...
Thanks everyone for the answers. Actually I think I will go straight to the shop and buy a footpump. Its only after testing myself I can decide how much work it really is for me. Then thinking of doing this for all four wheels maybe three times a day in hot conditions divided on two persons. Its maybe the best way to make a decision....
First things first......cracking choice of car!! I drove a Niva to Timbuktu, it dealt with the conditions really well.
On the li-lift jack front, there isn't really anywhere to use it on a Niva. They work great on a big, solid chassis mounted bumper, but the Nivas lack of chassis pretty much kills that plan. I'm sure it would be possible to weld some extra steel to the sills to jack on, but this seems like overkill to me.
Do you have the original Niva jack? As long as you have a bit of wood to spread the weight, they work fine and can easilly lift a wheel high enough to kick some sand back underneath it. We never needed it though, we got stuck twice, but a quick clearing of the wheels and a bit of a push was all we needed to be back on our way.
We lowered the tyre pressures when we left the tarmac in Mauritania, and pumped them up again when we reached Nouackchott.....thats it. We drove the pieste from Douentza upto Timbuktu on road pressures, no problem.
One thing i would say from my experience is, get a slightly more expensive brass foot pump. Our cheap steel halfords one didn't even do the first tyre before it died! Make sure you have some way of keeping it out of the sand too.
leave the highlift at home and go for the Niva Jack. For mopre performance look out for a 2nd hand hydaulic jack from a Range Rover. They have a telescopic piston increasing the lift.
Instead of an electrical compressor take a good bicycle floor pump (Bicycle pump - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia) with you - they are much less affected by dust and sand while pumping.
The brass footpump suggestion from Niva Say Never (Its Never over in a Rover!) is well made. The one I have is 10 years old now and is going strong. The cheap steel ones broke after a couple of tyres. You might still need your own pressure gauge though. I take a small plastic sack to put the jack on in the sand, although as Yves says, a bicycle pump is more likely to stay clear of the sand.
Another well known trick would be to use 'banana boxes' to carry to kit in. These are tough cardboard and will last the journey but are disposable too. You might be able to sell water containers once in west Africa - or include these sort of things as part of the deal. One thing I've used on every single trip (not being behind the wheel of a Tojo) is a good set of spanners (screw drivers, pliers, set and sockets). I wouldn't rely on others to take the range you may need.
Now I feel more relaxed about it. Thanks to all good advises here and thanks to me having bought a good foot pump and tried it myself. It took me about 5 minutes to pump one tyre one bar and its not much work. I think we will go for one or two good foot pumps. By the way we will use tubeless tires and I think we will use the ones that is now on the car. Its normal m/s tyres where the metalstuds have been taken out. In my opinion they are in good shape.
Thanks also on the advices on the Niva Jack. Maybe we will do without a High Lift jack. Still this race will go through some quite though stages:
Atar ---> Tidjikja ---> Kiffa So I don't want to be too badly prepared.
Thanks also for the compliments on the car. I have fallen in love with the Niva allready. It has soul...
Hi again Knut,
Even on that route, i don't think a hi-lift would offer you anything that Niva jack wouldn't. I know it is possible to winch using a hi-lift (very very very slowly!!), but i trust you won't be on that stretch alone anyway, so i'd get a decent towrope and if you're still nervous a kinetic rope too.
If, for whatever reason, you do decide to take a hi-lift, you will have to do some pretty serious welding to the old girl. The front and rear end of the body would crumple before you got a wheel off the ground, they're really not designed for jacking that way.
Your only option would be to jack up in the same place you would put the Niva jack and lift one side at a time. The problem is the bit that locates the Niva jack is very narrow box section so wouldn't be very stable at all, thats if it took the weight at all before it collapsed (it normally only locates the jack, it isn't weight bearing). The sills between the jacking points would again not be suitable, the way the sills are folded and joined would mean jacking on an area about 2mm wide, which i doubt very much would take the weight.
Sorry to sound so negative, i'm not trying to piss on your fire honest!
I'm sure there are as many opinions on tyres as there are members of this forum, but for what its worth, IMHO a more road based tread would give you less trouble than a mud and snow tyre.
I would also skip the high lift jack. The sat phone I would also question unless you REALLY need to stay in contact with people. When you see the stuff people run around in there you might be tempted to conclude that the most risky part will be the Euro motorways to get there! Nivas rock! A cheap hydraulic bottle jack is always useful and easy. For the price of these truckair type 12v compressors you also can't really go wrong with the manual pump as back up, but as others have said with a light vehicle you probably won't need it much.
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