Author Topic: Peka, caravan not car  (Read 17201 times)

Big Al

  • Prolific Poster
  • *****
  • Posts: 4578
  • Ranttweiler, biting the breeze block of banter
Peka, caravan not car
« on: May 24, 2012, 10:14:02 am »


I have now washed my Peka three times and it looks a lot cleaner. So pictures shortly.

What is a Peka? Well difficult to say other than what I know. It is a very lightweight non folding pop top 2 berth GRP caravan from 1960. Much along the lines of an Eriba Puck but only weighing 240 kg! That means it can be towed by cars of about 600 kg or 12 cwt in old money. That is truly nudging the larger sort of cars acceptable as a Microcar which would never be able to pull an Eriba. As if to add to the fun it is a distinctly odd looking caravan having a pointed front with no windows as the cupboards, cooker and niff naff is all in the front. The rear has a large rear screen and two opening side windows. The pop top is full length unlike most of this time.

The chassis is a Walter Winterheim construction from 1959, sort of German Brian James who made underpinnings for many a trailer maker. The chassis plate states the caravan as a PEKA and that the constructor was NORD-SUD-PLASTIK. No information has so far turned up searching for these. I am assuming it is German but unless a German speaker can come up with a 'translation' I can only get a Swedish translation, which is Peka - point or pointed. That makes sense, as it is. But would a Swedish firm be called that? The rear lights are Hella and the light switch is early Messerschmitt headlight switch, very German. So my guess it is a German Baltic boat builder attempting to enter the caravan market using their new GRP skills to steal a march on the competition. Such a lightweight caravan would struggle to survive 50 years and it could be the only one left.

As well as gaining this caravan I also collected a Walter Winterheim motorcycle trailer. That is to be towed by a Motorcycle, not put the bike on. Again an ideal trailer, with lighting, to go on a Microcar/scooter. There is another larger Walter Winterheim box trailer still Microcar friendly, with lighting, and a tubular steel bicycle trailer. All are box trailers to mount to ball hitches with bicycle wheels. Again very continental. I also have a tow bar for NSU Prinz. Lastly I also got a large windmill assembly but I am keeping that for obvious reasons and it has nothing to do with microcars. All a great find though it made young Root sick sadly.
« Last Edit: May 30, 2012, 08:11:10 pm by Big Al »
Messerschmitt set, Goggo Darts, Heinkel 175, Fiat Jolly, Autobianchi, Fairthorpe Electron Minor, Borgward, Isuzu Trooper
Citroen BX 17TZD & GTI 16v
Held - MG Magnette ZB & 4/44
For sale - Vellam Isetta, Bamby, AC Type 70, Velorex, Church Pod, Reliant Mk5, KR200,  Saab 96, Bellemy Trials, Citroen BXs

marcus

  • Prolific Poster
  • *****
  • Posts: 2676
    • http://marcusdemowbray.wordpress.com/
Re: Peka, caravan not car
« Reply #1 on: May 24, 2012, 11:04:14 am »
Let's see those photos!
Just remember: as one door closes behind you, another slams in your face

Big Al

  • Prolific Poster
  • *****
  • Posts: 4578
  • Ranttweiler, biting the breeze block of banter
Re: Peka, caravan not car
« Reply #2 on: May 26, 2012, 06:13:35 pm »
Messerschmitt set, Goggo Darts, Heinkel 175, Fiat Jolly, Autobianchi, Fairthorpe Electron Minor, Borgward, Isuzu Trooper
Citroen BX 17TZD & GTI 16v
Held - MG Magnette ZB & 4/44
For sale - Vellam Isetta, Bamby, AC Type 70, Velorex, Church Pod, Reliant Mk5, KR200,  Saab 96, Bellemy Trials, Citroen BXs

Big Al

  • Prolific Poster
  • *****
  • Posts: 4578
  • Ranttweiler, biting the breeze block of banter
Re: Peka, caravan not car
« Reply #3 on: May 26, 2012, 06:19:59 pm »
Messerschmitt set, Goggo Darts, Heinkel 175, Fiat Jolly, Autobianchi, Fairthorpe Electron Minor, Borgward, Isuzu Trooper
Citroen BX 17TZD & GTI 16v
Held - MG Magnette ZB & 4/44
For sale - Vellam Isetta, Bamby, AC Type 70, Velorex, Church Pod, Reliant Mk5, KR200,  Saab 96, Bellemy Trials, Citroen BXs

Big Al

  • Prolific Poster
  • *****
  • Posts: 4578
  • Ranttweiler, biting the breeze block of banter
Re: Peka, caravan not car
« Reply #4 on: May 26, 2012, 06:21:25 pm »
Messerschmitt set, Goggo Darts, Heinkel 175, Fiat Jolly, Autobianchi, Fairthorpe Electron Minor, Borgward, Isuzu Trooper
Citroen BX 17TZD & GTI 16v
Held - MG Magnette ZB & 4/44
For sale - Vellam Isetta, Bamby, AC Type 70, Velorex, Church Pod, Reliant Mk5, KR200,  Saab 96, Bellemy Trials, Citroen BXs

Big Al

  • Prolific Poster
  • *****
  • Posts: 4578
  • Ranttweiler, biting the breeze block of banter
Re: Peka, caravan not car
« Reply #5 on: May 26, 2012, 06:25:04 pm »


Apologies if these are to large an image. Having managed to get the images to upload is one success for the siliconly stupid but getting my PC programme to shrink pics has eluded me as yet. Far to complicated a programme more interested in image than content, na ha!
Messerschmitt set, Goggo Darts, Heinkel 175, Fiat Jolly, Autobianchi, Fairthorpe Electron Minor, Borgward, Isuzu Trooper
Citroen BX 17TZD & GTI 16v
Held - MG Magnette ZB & 4/44
For sale - Vellam Isetta, Bamby, AC Type 70, Velorex, Church Pod, Reliant Mk5, KR200,  Saab 96, Bellemy Trials, Citroen BXs

marcus

  • Prolific Poster
  • *****
  • Posts: 2676
    • http://marcusdemowbray.wordpress.com/
Re: Peka, caravan not car
« Reply #6 on: May 26, 2012, 06:46:47 pm »
You're fine Al, this forum re-sizes them anyway. It's about time everything on the internet was harmonised for digital images!
Just remember: as one door closes behind you, another slams in your face

AndrewG

  • Quite Chatty
  • ****
  • Posts: 288
Re: Peka, caravan not car
« Reply #7 on: May 27, 2012, 07:48:45 pm »
Big Al, is it OK for me to repost those photos elsewhere?  The American fibreglass trailer guys are always interested in the history of moulded trailers and so they would like to see these.

Do you have any approximate body dimensions?

richard

  • Rich
  • Prolific Poster
  • *****
  • Posts: 4458
  • Bond ,Gordon,Bruetsch
Re: Peka, caravan not car
« Reply #8 on: May 27, 2012, 09:12:13 pm »
i do love that blue nylon rope tied round the middle to keep it together - much like meself eh  ;)
outside of a dog a book is mans best friend. Inside of a dog it's too dark to read .Groucho Marx 1895-1977

Big Al

  • Prolific Poster
  • *****
  • Posts: 4578
  • Ranttweiler, biting the breeze block of banter
Re: Peka, caravan not car
« Reply #9 on: May 28, 2012, 08:15:48 am »
Big Al, is it OK for me to repost those photos elsewhere?  The American fibreglass trailer guys are always interested in the history of moulded trailers and so they would like to see these.

Do you have any approximate body dimensions?

Post away. I did not want the pics of it as found published as then they are the ones that appear when the item's value is discussed. At the moment I am after information or any evidence of the company and/or the model as so far no one has ever heard of either.

As I said it is just 240 kg in weight. It will be 52 inches wide as it only just went on my trailer. It will be 12 1/2 ft long including the drawbar and I can stand up in it at 5 ft 6in without opening the pop top. So it is close to the Eriba Puck but slightly wider. The owner, the eccentric inventor and green before it was fashionable Captain Seddon, used it behind either of his early self LPG converted 1200cc VW Beetles or his larger motorcycle combo. Incongruously also behind his 1930's LPG converted Rolls Royce as well. As with all his things it had a windmill which was mounted on the front when parked, see clips. The Captain would have used his electrically heated garments, he sold these to motorcyclists as a business, via a plug or two to keep warm on colder days. We like Captain Seddon. Amazingly he new Fritz Fend and there is, somewhere, a tapped discussion between Seddon and Fend. Will it turn up?

The construction appears to be a two part GRP moulding joined down the middle. The pop top as another moulding. The door is wood and ali. Inside there is a wood frame covered with light grade veneered ply. Quite what was used on the upper area I am not sure but it looks like a substance like polystyrene, but not, covered with material. These lightweight interior fixings were enough to stiffen the thin GRP shell which had a thick exterior grade ply floor bolted and screwed on to create the floor - like a Nobel. The whole then sitting on the Walter Winterhiem trailer frame and torsion bar axle without brakes.

As Richard has noticed the caravan has begun to sag a little as the floor has degraded round the edges. Not aided by the modified wheel arches and 12 inch wheels I feel might not be original. So the unit is rather more oval than it should be around the waste, I know the feeling. That and the failed outrigger under the door area have seen that part unsupported and sag enough to strain the roof into a short tear. The bit of string was the only defence to this slow spreading of the shaped GRP. Fortunately the caravan was rescued in time as another year or two and I think it would have failed totally, split open and died pretty fast thereafter. So as it stands the major repairs are in fact woodwork and all the parts are there as patterns. That done the structure will be stiffened again and a couple of GRP repairs will see the remaining task of recreating a good outer surface finish. Much as I would love to do this it might be better to allow someone with more time on their hands to do it. My motivation was to rescue something I see as slightly bonkers and yet useful and very probably the last of its kind.
« Last Edit: May 28, 2012, 08:57:21 am by Big Al »
Messerschmitt set, Goggo Darts, Heinkel 175, Fiat Jolly, Autobianchi, Fairthorpe Electron Minor, Borgward, Isuzu Trooper
Citroen BX 17TZD & GTI 16v
Held - MG Magnette ZB & 4/44
For sale - Vellam Isetta, Bamby, AC Type 70, Velorex, Church Pod, Reliant Mk5, KR200,  Saab 96, Bellemy Trials, Citroen BXs

Big Al

  • Prolific Poster
  • *****
  • Posts: 4578
  • Ranttweiler, biting the breeze block of banter
Re: Peka, caravan not car
« Reply #10 on: May 30, 2012, 08:05:13 pm »
Messerschmitt set, Goggo Darts, Heinkel 175, Fiat Jolly, Autobianchi, Fairthorpe Electron Minor, Borgward, Isuzu Trooper
Citroen BX 17TZD & GTI 16v
Held - MG Magnette ZB & 4/44
For sale - Vellam Isetta, Bamby, AC Type 70, Velorex, Church Pod, Reliant Mk5, KR200,  Saab 96, Bellemy Trials, Citroen BXs

AndrewG

  • Quite Chatty
  • ****
  • Posts: 288
Re: Peka, caravan not car
« Reply #11 on: May 31, 2012, 10:46:18 pm »
Al, there are fiberglass trailer enthusiasts all over the US and Canada asking if you'll join their forum to show them more of this trailer!

Thanks for the inside photo - I'll pass that one on.

Big Al

  • Prolific Poster
  • *****
  • Posts: 4578
  • Ranttweiler, biting the breeze block of banter
Re: Peka, caravan not car
« Reply #12 on: June 01, 2012, 08:37:11 am »
I have posted to the Classic Caravan Forum to a deafening silence. So I can only assume that British caravan enthusiasts have very little to say about continental caravans. Bit of a disappointment and I think I probably will not bother to restore it if this is the level of interest. I will be driving classic cars, the Magnette or something, better suited to a Pan or Familia soon if I choose to do the caravan thing. This caravan is better suited to someone who has a lower powered machine like a Beetle or NSU etc. Not saying never again but been there, done that. So I think the Peka is headed for eBay.

How am I not surprised that there is more interest in America. Small seems to be in over there at the moment but also Americans tend to be more demonstrative of interest than the reserved Brits. Of course the other thing is the American type motorcycles could probably tow this caravan meaning it actually has more potential use over there than it does here.

I will probably get some more shots of the caravan prior to eBaying it.

Cleaned up the Atlas twin burner cooker yesterday. All parts present and nothing broken. It will go again but really wants to be stripped out and referbed for reliable use. Then again a refit might see a more sophisticated hob fitted into the panelling rather than this free standing unit. I see it as an advantage as clearly with the amount of pipe on it the good Captain was using it outside the caravan when the opportunity arose. Ideal for those evening light barbecue/crate of beer fests some of us like with our buddies.

Also cleaned up the four caravan parking jacks. Pretty basic but it needs nothing more complicated. They insert into slots and are adjusted and pinned to length so that the van is stable on site.
Messerschmitt set, Goggo Darts, Heinkel 175, Fiat Jolly, Autobianchi, Fairthorpe Electron Minor, Borgward, Isuzu Trooper
Citroen BX 17TZD & GTI 16v
Held - MG Magnette ZB & 4/44
For sale - Vellam Isetta, Bamby, AC Type 70, Velorex, Church Pod, Reliant Mk5, KR200,  Saab 96, Bellemy Trials, Citroen BXs

Rusty Chrome (Malcolm Parker)

  • Global Moderator
  • Prolific Poster
  • *****
  • Posts: 1221
Re: Peka, caravan not car
« Reply #13 on: June 01, 2012, 02:38:10 pm »
Doesn't seem to be a lot (any!) information available. There are a couple of companies called PEKA and a likely candidate seems to be PEKA - Fahrzeugbau GmbH which still makes towbars and some related gear in Karlsruhe, Germany. They are some kind of subsidiary of a company called Gay & Nater who according to the website were making trailers from 1946 until the 90's, now they're more of a trailer rental company.  Nothing at all on Nord-Sud Plastik, perhaps this was a one-off prototype that didn't go anywhere.

http://www.gaynater.de/
Malcolm
Bond Mk D - "The Bond Minicar solves your problem"
Nobel 200 - "Almost as cheap as breathing!"

Chris Thomas

  • Administrator
  • Prolific Poster
  • *****
  • Posts: 1261
  • old Banana
Re: Peka, caravan not car
« Reply #14 on: June 01, 2012, 04:30:11 pm »
Dear Al

Here is the translation from the Gay & Nater web site

We are a since 1946 in Karlsruhe-based family business, founded by Mr Willy Gay shortly after the end of the war.Already in 1946, our company founder is specialized in the construction of car trailers. Always a garage business was also affiliated.in 1975, Mr. Willi Gay did pass his nephew Remy Nater operation. This further expanded the operation and advanced him to the areas of rent a car and trailer rental.In 1987, the company was passed from Mr Remy Nater to his son Helmut. Mr Helmut Nater had meanwhile taken the profession of automotive mechanic and already filed his examinations.1991 Establishing a computerised system of rental plan.Under Mr Helmut Nater, the range of trailer construction was hired largely because this business is no longer viable in today's world. For this, the trailer rental range was further expanded so that today approximately 50 supporters are in the rental. Furthermore, a major component of the operation is the repair of trailers and cars of all kinds.

I fear that this may have been the reason they never sold well in the UK

Chris Thomas