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Joined
Sep 4, 2011
Messages
5,579
Reaction score
5,137
Location
Wiveliscombe
Hive Type
National
Number of Hives
24
Yeah, that old chestnut. Today I received the final payment for my Fiesta being written off. I have started looking at possible replacements with a view to making it easy to transport beekeeping kit around. Damn, but cars have become expensive!

I had in mind that I might look for a Berlingo or something along those lines, but actually there don't seem to be that many around unless I want to travel hundreds of miles. I'm wondering if it wouldn't make more sense to get a replacement for our aging Octavia estate which after 165,000 miles is not so far off becoming a liability, then me just using the Octavia for bee stuff. The load area with the rear seats folded down (or potentially removed) is huge and I could probably line it with a removable ply bed with rings for tying kit down.

Or perhaps a "normal" car with something like a 6x4 trailer would make more sense. It would be possible to make one weathertight, though it would still get damp inside so leaving clothing and my toolbox in it might not be great. It would make turning an issue in some of the places I go. And I'd have to find a space to keep the trailer when it wasn't being used.

I hate buying cars :(

(On the subject of how expensive cars have become, we bought the Octavia about seven years ago when it was already four years old. Since then we've put close to 100,000 miles on it and the current market value still appears to be half what we paid!)

James
 
Yeah, that old chestnut. Today I received the final payment for my Fiesta being written off. I have started looking at possible replacements with a view to making it easy to transport beekeeping kit around. Damn, but cars have become expensive!

I had in mind that I might look for a Berlingo or something along those lines, but actually there don't seem to be that many around unless I want to travel hundreds of miles. I'm wondering if it wouldn't make more sense to get a replacement for our aging Octavia estate which after 165,000 miles is not so far off becoming a liability, then me just using the Octavia for bee stuff. The load area with the rear seats folded down (or potentially removed) is huge and I could probably line it with a removable ply bed with rings for tying kit down.

Or perhaps a "normal" car with something like a 6x4 trailer would make more sense. It would be possible to make one weathertight, though it would still get damp inside so leaving clothing and my toolbox in it might not be great. It would make turning an issue in some of the places I go. And I'd have to find a space to keep the trailer when it wasn't being used.

I hate buying cars :(

(On the subject of how expensive cars have become, we bought the Octavia about seven years ago when it was already four years old. Since then we've put close to 100,000 miles on it and the current market value still appears to be half what we paid!)

James
I’d go for van every time if it’s purely for the bees. I’ve had a Combo, Berlingo and now a Dublo, all very good for carting gear around and great that it can be left in there rather than having to clean it out to transport SWMBO to the shops!
If I had the money I’d go for a 4x4 but can’t justify the outlay.
 
I would recommend that you waited for a Berlingo to show up. I use a MPV version 1,6 TDI 48/50 Mpg with a plywood tray which can be removed to replace seats back in if needed. Reg 2010 is not ULEZ compliant. Low loading for easy hive moving etc. Sliding doors. The new version is Electric only if you want to push the hive out.
 
4x4 Ford Ranger Toyota Hilux or Isuzu Dmax would be ideal, but it is really hard to justify this investment purely for bees. This is not just the price of the vehicle but also the regular maintenance and running cost. Berlingo, Kangoo or Transit are probably lower cost but in high demand for commercial use. A member of allotment is using VW Caddy for gardening and it looked very spacious.

I can usually get close to all my hives without need of SUV.The landowners are very caring and offered me a Land Rover pull if I ever get stuck. I invested into small trailer last year but I only using it now to collect suppers as you have to think in advance how to maneuver and park.
 
Yeah, that old chestnut. Today I received the final payment for my Fiesta being written off. I have started looking at possible replacements with a view to making it easy to transport beekeeping kit around. Damn, but cars have become expensive!

I had in mind that I might look for a Berlingo or something along those lines, but actually there don't seem to be that many around unless I want to travel hundreds of miles. I'm wondering if it wouldn't make more sense to get a replacement for our aging Octavia estate which after 165,000 miles is not so far off becoming a liability, then me just using the Octavia for bee stuff. The load area with the rear seats folded down (or potentially removed) is huge and I could probably line it with a removable ply bed with rings for tying kit down.

Or perhaps a "normal" car with something like a 6x4 trailer would make more sense. It would be possible to make one weathertight, though it would still get damp inside so leaving clothing and my toolbox in it might not be great. It would make turning an issue in some of the places I go. And I'd have to find a space to keep the trailer when it wasn't being used.

I hate buying cars :(

(On the subject of how expensive cars have become, we bought the Octavia about seven years ago when it was already four years old. Since then we've put close to 100,000 miles on it and the current market value still appears to be half what we paid!)

James
Second hand cars are really fetching silly prices but there are a few good makes around .. I'd keep the Octavia for a bee wagon and invest in a decent car for family use. Depends upon how much you want to spent .. I've just replaced our two ageing Rover 75 Estates - both stlll going strong but my wife was finding the tailgate a bit heavy and her only 'new'car requirement was 'electric tailgate'. One of our Rovers went to my mobile mechanic for a fair price - the other sold on ebay in a matter of hours for almost what I paid for it 9 years and 85,000 miles ago !

We've replaced them with Mercedes estates - a C and an E Class .. full service history from Mercedes and reasonable (for Mercs) miles on them. Lovely cars with lots of mod cons ...
 
Get a Jaguar XE and a bee buddy with a large hatchback. The XE has a tiny boot, so he has to carry the equipment in his vehicle, getting that muddy on the farm track, and, for convenience sake, he has to store it all at his place.
 
just get a LWB Mitsubishi L200 and be done with, seven hives in the back or 35 shallows and still room for five people in the cab

If I had something like that, no way would I be wanting the ability to carry more than one passenger :D

I did see a fifteen year old two-door Hilux earlier that had over a quarter of a million miles on the clock o_O

James
 
I'm looking at beehive compliant cars now. MPVs seem to be the way. For the time being, being able to shift 2 or 3 hives, or a dozen supers at a time is enough for me.
These look OK: Vauxhall Zafira, Renault Scenic VW Golf
 
I had in mind that I might look for a Berlingo or something along those lines, but actually there don't seem to be that many around unless I want to travel hundreds of miles.

James
Yes, I've had my 2009 Berlingo for four years now. Cost £2.5k. I've removed the rear seats and covered the consequent load area with a board. It will take several hives and miscellaneous kit. Also useful for taking stuff to the tip or manure to the allotment. It's the headroom which I value most. I never clean the inside so SWMBO's grimace as she climbs aboard (we also use it for local journeys) is wondrous to behold!
 

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My 2012 Honda Jazz has taken 4 hives - with bees. easily. If pushed I could put another on the passenger seat..
The rear "Magic Seats" fold flat to give a smooth floor - in 30 seconds (ditto putting upright) ULEZ and 43mpg in 70% urban driving. Wide opening doors. Dirt cheap to run, maintain and insure.

Ideal for a hobby beekeeper - see also bigger Honda Civic,
 
They are a good vehicle but a very poorly designed rear light seal means a problem with water ingress that soaks the boot. The door slams also allow water into the same area, a convenient shelf behind the rear quarter panels where it collects in pools before running into the car.
 
I'd have liked a van, or a pickup, or an estate. I got an old Mondeo hatchback because everything for the bees goes on a tab. I'm hoping I'll be in the black next year.

The Mondeo with seats down and a board/floor works well, even if it has a ledge below the tailgate.
 
They are a good vehicle but a very poorly designed rear light seal means a problem with water ingress that soaks the boot. The door slams also allow water into the same area, a convenient shelf behind the rear quarter panels where it collects in pools before running into the car.

The Jazz, or the Berlingo?

James
 
The Jazz, or the Berlingo?

James
I had a 07 Belingo van which was great but it had the unfortunate trait of breaking clutch cables which I understand was not an unusual thing on Berlingos.
The cables cost about £80 and then the fitting was not cheap.
 
They are a good vehicle but a very poorly designed rear light seal means a problem with water ingress that soaks the boot. The door slams also allow water into the same area, a convenient shelf behind the rear quarter panels where it collects in pools before running into the car.
I'm sometimes a bit rough but I'd have considered drilling a couple of drain holes 😎
 
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