VAN LIFE RADIO MOBILE RADIO STATION
the VLR Mobile Studio Design?
In the case of Van Life Radio it's a story of two passions colliding into one. The love of touring the open road and meeting all kinds of folk mixed with the passion for producing music entertainment on a radio station. VLR will livie the dream cruising in our mobile studio.
We thought of the mobile studio idea originally in 2020, during many hours of Lockdown blues. How can we travel around the UK and mainland Europe, and still operate the radio station from a van? The solution, a large caravan or 5th wheel big enough to accommodate two people permanently on the road as well as housing a portable radio studio, yet small enough to tow on a standard UK license (pre 1996). Not an easy task.
Our towing capacity cannot exceed 8.2 tons (8,200kgs) on a UK drivers license and the majority of imported 5th Wheels are huge, far exceeding the MAM (Maximum Allowable Mass). However, with the help of a 5th wheel company in the UK, we are toying with a few ideas that just might work.
An example, but not the final solution, is the Rockwood range of 5th Wheels, which are super spacious and has the studio space that we are looking for, the 2896MB has a UVW (unloaded vehicle weight) of 4,382Kgs and a CCC (cargo carrying capacity) mass of 720Kgs. Therefore the combined maximum load mass will be around 5 tons which is 3,2 tons below the UK license allowance. BUT, can we find a suitable vehicle to tow it?
The best solution so far is a Mitsubishi Canter which is light weight in itself but can to up to 7 tons. The problem is, do you want a Canter as your run around vehicle once the 5th wheel is parked up? Probably not.
Our perfect solution would be to have a motorhome with a second bedroom that could be converted to a small lounge studio that can accommodate 3 people in a studio environment. The problem is, the weight. As soon as you incorporate this into the design, the mobility becomes difficult both in manouverability and license restrictions. Its a difficult choice.
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