In designing the OKTO caravan, we wanted to create a product that was distinct and unique, and that deals with some of the challenging issues facing caravan manufacturers today. We chose to partner with different experts in their respective fields to create a product that, while easy to build, also meets the practical needs of caravanners. The voice of the customer must be heard in our products and processes so that we deliver a product that meets and exceeds their needs and expectations.
Our key objective has been to build the caravan as light as possible. The lighter we can make the caravan, the more packing space we can provide. We understand that caravanners like to take “everything and the kitchen sink” with them and we have therefore aimed to give them as much packing capacity as possible.
In today’s world of townhouse living, we have built a caravan that should fit into a standard garage. This will allow caravanners who choose a lock-up-and-go lifestyle to still keep their “ability to go” with them in their “lock-up”.
The chassis is designed and built by AL-KO in Germany. The specifications for our caravans are aligned to the chassis that AL-KO builds for Australia and have been tried and tested in that market. The main beams are punched from 2mm mild steel and are made in one piece from front to back. The holes, bends and pressed shapes enhance the strength of the beam to ensure that it can carry the weight of the body with ease. The components are all hot-dip galvanised to prevent any rust. The chassis is bolted together with high-tensile bolts to create the platform on which we build the caravan.
An AL-KO coupler and four AL-KO stabilising jacks complete the undercarriage of the chassis.
The spare wheel is integrated into the chassis underneath and is easily accessible on its slide-out mechanism. In addition, the position lowers the centre of gravity of the caravan and gives you more space in the front hatch to pack more essential things.
AL-KO is the worlds’ largest manufacturer of caravan chassis. Their engineers have years of experience designing lightweight durable platforms onto which many of the world’s caravan manufacturers build their products. AL-KO have manufacturing facilities in South Africa, Germany, UK, USA, China and Australia and operates in 40 countries worldwide. You can check out AL-KO at http://www.alko-tech.com/uk/about-al-ko-vehicle-technology
The axle system is also designed and manufactured by AL-KO. This axle system not only provides the overrun braking system, it also provides the independent suspension on which the caravan rides. The rubber inside the axle tubes absorbs the shocks and bumps on the road to protect the body of the caravan. Our AL-KO rubber torsion axle and suspension system has been used under South African caravans for more than 40 years.
The job of the suspension system on a caravan is absorb all the bumps in the road and stop or dampen the impact of these on the body and insides of the caravan. If the suspension is too hard or too soft it allows too much vibration and too many shocks into the caravan body. This is why matching the suspension capability of “shock absorbers” to the total potential weight of the caravan is key to making sure that the insides of the caravan are shielded from the knock and bumps of the road.
You can check out how the suspension works here:
14” alloy rims are fitted to give the caravan a stylish look.
The floor is reinforced with aluminum beams to bolster the platform on which the caravan is built. All the materials are bonded together inside a vacuum press to create a composite panel that is extremely strong. The 40mm-thick floor is finished with hard-wearing cushioned vinyl.
The walls are made from aluminium, GRP (fibreglass) and polystyrene. What make the OKTO caravan unique is that both skins are single sheets with no joints in either plane. The wall is framed with aluminium beams. These materials are also glued together in a vacuum press to create a single composite panel. The walls are thicker than in most other caravans in South Africa, which provides better insulation and strength. There is no timber in the walls, front and rear, or roof of the caravan. This will ensure that any water ingress cannot cause damage to the inner components of your caravan.
Hatch doors and windows are framed and clamp onto the walls. We have been careful to limit the number of holes that we have drilled into the caravan to ensure that there is the minimum risk of water ingress.
Tent and Trim
A powder-coated aluminium extrusion finishes off the edge of the caravan. You will be able to fit a tent onto the caravan through this extrusion to expand your living space and create pleasant shaded areas alongside.
Windows are all double glazed giving better insulation. The side windows are manufactured in Germany by Dometic and are selected from their latest range of window designs. The windows are flush with the side giving it a really sleek finish. Dometic is a world leader in the design and manufacture of caravan components and they have an office in South Africa to support their products in the South African market.
Visit https://www.dometic.com/en-za/za to see the caravanning world of Dometic.
The furniture is made from lightweight plywood covered with a foil. It is cut by computer controlled routers to ensure that each piece fits together perfectly.