Ask any old bushy, when it comes to reliability in the bush, the simpler a machine is, the better. Reason being, there’s less chance of something breaking. Plus, if something does call it quits, you’ll find either a hammer, cable ties or duct tape will get it fixed. The Adventurer hardfloor from Ivan Campers is a breath of fresh air compared to all the technically advanced campers out there. It’s got all the right ingredients for a comfortable stay, but does it in the simplest, rawest form. The Adventurer is bare bones basic but it just oozes value for money with a price tag of $10,999. Yes, you read that right!
Now if you’re anything like me, you’ll be a bit sceptical about any camper trailer that claims to have everything you need for that sort of money. So let’s take a closer look at this bad boy and see what it’s really made of.
DESIGN AND CONSTRUCTION
First up, you’ll find it uses gussets to add strength to non-structural accessories like the jerry can, spare tyre and gas bottle mounts. Straight up, it’s one of the simplest, most cost-effective ways to add strength without piling on the kilos in a camper trailer, yet so few actually do it in this price bracket. Then there’s the rear access panel, which is purposely built as light as a feather. Sure, it’s not as tough as some others, but the upside is that there’s no need for fancy gas struts. Plus, it’s still sturdy enough to keep the dust seal working well.
The bracing for the floor is as simple as they come and super light too, but do you think the floor flexes one bit? Nope! It’s as solid as a rock. Even the storage rack is just a basic square tube design, similar to that in a 1970s camper. I can’t help but think if this thing’s as tough as it is basic, it should be near-on indestructible. What I really liked about this camper from the start is that it seems trustworthy. You know, the type you can comfortably hook up and not have to worry about too much.
There are also plenty of good points about the inside of the camper. Like the strut assisted tilt-able bed base made from good old fashioned ply wood to help keep the weight down. There’s heaps of ventilation, too, with double layer window flaps and the zips all glide nice and easy.
The flooring inside is also very basic but effective, with an emphasis on being easy to clean.
When it comes to the canvas side of things there are a whole lot of ticks that need to be earned before a camper trailer is deemed a cracker in my books. Unfortunately, the Adventurer fell a little short in this department. The quality of the canvas itself seems to be quite good, especially for the price, but I can’t help but feel a few design flaws let the rest of the camper down. For example, there are plenty of holes and gaps, where the camper is attached to the tent, for creepy crawlies to get inside. Secondly, the tent is secured in place with nothing more than a few tek screws. The main tent poles at the front extend a bit far for my liking, which results in the whole tent taking a lean if it’s not set up on perfectly flat ground. It just doesn’t seem as rigid or sturdy as it could be. Plus, there’s plenty of stretching and tent pole adjustments involved in setting up which, you might have guessed, is a pet hate of mine. In saying all that, the tent has all the features you would want, like a fully enclosed annexe complete with zip-in floor, and flaps over the zips.
THE WRAP UP
After giving the Adventurer a good going over, I’m happy to say this is perhaps one of the best value-for-money campers on the market, at least for $10K, anyway! Some things still need attention, and there are definitely improvements to be made. But when it’s all said and done, it’s an honest, budget camper designed using basic, proven concepts to ensure it’s as reliable as they come.
HITS AND MISSES
- Basic and reliable
- Massive fridge slide and storage box
- Impressive features for the price
- Floor is nice and solid to walk on
- Tent is fiddly to set up with gaps in design
- Electrical work can be improved
Check out the full feature in issue #102 July 2016 of Camper Trailer Australia magazine. Subscribe today for all the latest camper trailer news, reviews and travel inspiration.