Types of dandy trailer tents

Dandy folding campers

by admin on April 26, 2009

Must be one of the most often asked questions – which type of dandy do I have?

Well over the next few days and weeks – maybe months –  I am gong to attempt to clarify what is what, adding pictures if I can – bear with me and feel free to comment

As a starting point the colour of the PVC walls is going to give you a pretty good clue as to the age of the dandy:

  • Late 1960’s to early seventies – Green PVC walls were the earliest
  • Early 1970’s – Orange PVC walls superseded the green
  • Late 1970’s – Brown PVC walls introduced
  • 1990’s – Blue and white PVC walls

Prior to the blue and white models – which were named – the dandy was known purely by its sleeping capacity. With many similarities between the units the easiest way to identify which model was which was by the width of the trailer:

  • Dandy 4 Berth – 4 feet wide (122cm)
  • Dandy 4/5 Berth – 4 feet 10 inches wide (147cm)
  • Dandy 5 Berth – 5 feet 10 inches wide (178cm)
  • Dandy 6 Berth – 6 feet 3 inches wide (190cm)

Following the introduction of the blue and white models, identification became a whole lot easier as the units were given names, but just for completeness:

  • Dandy Dart -160cm (including wheelarches)
  • Dandy Delta – 183cm (including wheelarches)
  • Dandy Designer – 188cm
  • Dandy Discovery – 188cm (Same as Designer but with bench instead of table/chairs)
  • Dandy Destiny – 205cm
  • Dandy Dimension – 205cm

More about these later…

{ 50 comments… read them below or add one }

Richard May 6, 2009 at 4:43 pm

Hi, the Dart is narrower than the Delta. Both have the sticky-out wheelarches which may be confusing you.The Dart is 160cm and the Delta is 183cm including the wheelarches. (I have one of each model which I hire out. I have just measured them all) . You are correct with the Designer and Destiny widths.
Don’t forget the Discovery which is a Designer with a bench instead of the table and chairs.

admin May 6, 2009 at 5:17 pm

Many thanks – the dimensions came from the brochures, but I bow to your first hand information. Have updated the post!

Susan May 14, 2009 at 12:16 am

We have a Dandy from the 1960’s with the original awning. However the walls are Royal Blue rather than green, I know it is from the 60’s as I bought it from a friend who’s family had owned it from new. It’s a 4 berth and 4 foot wide.

peter mcguigan May 14, 2009 at 4:32 pm

hi ,can you help ? i am looking for instructins on the correct way to assemble a 1982 dandy six de-lux can you help?.
peter mac

admin May 14, 2009 at 9:37 pm

Hi Peter, I have a copy of the original instructions pertaining to the errection of a dart, delta, discovery and designer…in principal the method should hold for a six-berth. I can let you have a copy if you email me at info@dandytrailertent.co.uk

peter mcguigan May 20, 2009 at 11:06 pm

hi many thanks for the reply you can e-mail me on

Gwilym Williams June 2, 2009 at 10:22 am

Hi we have jest purchased a dandy last night on ebay, it is brown 5 berth with bench bed seat.
the wheelarch is not outside the trailer, they are level like a car’s wheelarch.
So my Q is it 1970’s or 1980’s, and is it a dandy 5// 70’s or a named dandy of 80’s.
Need to know if pos, due to filling in dandy club member’s form, type of dandy we own.
Any help would be great thank you. Gwil

admin June 2, 2009 at 12:43 pm

I would say you have an 80’s Dandy 4/5 Berth (same as mine) – Can confirm by measuring the width of the trailer and comparing to the widths in the post “Types of Dandy”. Enjoy!

Tony June 4, 2009 at 10:49 pm

Is anyone selling a Dandy Dart?

Arjan June 17, 2009 at 8:39 pm

Just bough a late 70’s Dandy Designer! Pretty rare here in holland….

@ Alex: Many thanks for the brochure and setup instructions!

peter sandford June 25, 2009 at 6:40 pm

Hi, We have just purchased a Dandy 6 1983 but have no instructions on erecting it, also it has 155/80/12 tyres on and we need to get hold of a spare have you any idea where we can get hold of one please?

peter mcguigan June 28, 2009 at 8:30 pm

hi is anybody looking for a dandy six circa early 80s ?

admin June 30, 2009 at 11:46 am
windmillfairy June 30, 2009 at 4:12 pm

Hi, we have a green walled 1970’s Dandy and would like it refurbuished, does anyone have ideas of cost approx (I understand it will depend on what’s needed). Also where this can be done.

thanks all

admin June 30, 2009 at 4:29 pm


These guys would probably be my first point of contact

Good luck

peter mcguigan June 30, 2009 at 6:19 pm

hi try hgv trailer repair company who install or. Repair curtain sides on trailers they also have off cuts or roll end PVC they also need to be able to weld PVC a full retrim may cost £300.00 to £600.00 it may be cheaper to buy a cheap trailer and swop over PVC plus any other bits. Is kitchen units etc

peter sandford July 6, 2009 at 4:12 pm

Hi, I have a 1983 Dandy 6 and am looking for the door lock barrel with key,any ideas where I can get one from please?

admin July 6, 2009 at 6:50 pm

I was in the same boat when I bought mine – pretty much any caravan shop will supply a replacement. For piece of mind I took along the original to match.


peter sandford July 7, 2009 at 7:21 pm


alicia July 9, 2009 at 12:48 am

Really want to buy a used Dandy any one seen good one for under £700 really like orange but like them all. I need width under 166cms. Money waiting for nice camper

Fran July 13, 2009 at 11:32 pm

Just bought an orange coloured Dandy. All pvc in excellent order including awning and groundsheet. However there is no cooker in this trailer and I do not know where the gas bottle is meant to be kept. There is space alongside the sink to fit a cooker but unlike later Dandy’s no gas storage box. Even if there was I can’t work out how you could detach the upper sink/cooker unit to pack it away without disconnecting from the bottle. Is there some special quick release fixing for the cooker itself? Is it safe to store the gas on the shelf below the cooker? Can anyone advise please? Fran

admin July 14, 2009 at 9:22 am

Hi Fran,

I dont have an orange Dandy but the way it works for me (also no gas storage box) is that once the cooker unit has been placed on the top unit, the gas hose runs down the back and outside – through a gap in the pvc/velcro join – to the waiting gas bottle. I cannot pack away without disconnecting the gas bottle which I store inside the unit for travelling. Hope this helps!

Fran July 14, 2009 at 8:05 pm

Admin Hi,
Thankyou for the information. Can I take it that it is unsafe to connect to gas within the trailer cupboard, I don’t really want to create a hole in the back panel unless I’ve really got to. Fran

Alex July 15, 2009 at 10:28 am

Hi Fran,
In my case the gas input to the cooker is not within the cupboard, it is on the left hand side. The hose runs from here to the outside, passing thru where the velcro attaches to the trailer body. There is no requirements for any holes.
Hope this helps
Alex (admin)

Fran July 15, 2009 at 5:35 pm

Hi Alex
Thankyou very much that is what I’ll do.

Alicia July 17, 2009 at 3:37 pm

I bought a dandy !!! A brown white one 1989 Im told. does anyone know if this will have electrics as standard and underfloor heating as some seem to ? I have no idea what Im doing but have a week to find out till I make my 5 hour trip to collect it !

Also it does not have any storage box on the A frame trailer does anyone know where I can get one please :0)

admin July 19, 2009 at 10:37 pm


The heater is easy to identify – ask if it has box visible from under the trailer- is very obvious if its there. Electrics should be standard. I think the A-frame box is particulaaly herd to find and that most people make (or have made) a replacement.

alicia July 22, 2009 at 10:05 pm

hi found out no electrics so have bought caravan hookup thing with 4 way sockets on the end – I just hope i have this gap people mention for the gas pipe pvc/velcro so i can feed it out that way. I collect this friday so will know then thanks

Frank July 25, 2009 at 11:59 am

Hi, I have a 1995 Dandy Designer with a carpeted floor – under which is a heater, covered by a square of carpet. Is it safe to operate the heater with this square in place, or should there be a grille to cover the heater?

peter sandford July 25, 2009 at 6:58 pm

Hi, what is the best to use to clean the plastic windows in the awning on our Dandy 6 please?

admin July 25, 2009 at 8:58 pm

Hi Peter

Just make sure to avoid anything even slightly abrasive- I have a very dull corner in one of my windows! I have used a soft cloth with washing up liquid quite successfully. I also beleive there is a product specifically for convertible car windows which will not only clean, but polish out minor scratches.


admin July 25, 2009 at 8:58 pm

Ddefinately a grill – No carpet when operating the heater.

alicia July 26, 2009 at 5:09 pm

i am now a proud Dandy Owner – we spent 17 hours in the car friday picking it up and getting home but after a night in it its seems worth the while. when we packed up one of the white roof supports seems to be slightly sticking out – its the left side as the right side is the one you have to extend. Is it supposed to be like this or did we miss something ? I also damaged the jockey wheel we didnt know you should pull the pole thing right up DOH. All in all I think its smashing and I will be writing some of my own erection instructions as the ones it came with are not great but if anyone has some already let me know – i think its helpful before you get your dandy to know how it goes up as we didnt find anything on the net really and they are simple to erect.

Sara July 29, 2009 at 7:48 pm

Hi there.
We have a 70’s 4 berth with has undergone a full body off restoration. The chassis was rotten so we welded up another. The panels and floor have been replaced too! It was supposed to be an easy fix up, ahem!! We are looking forward to our holiday in 2 weeks.
However we have hit another problem today. We’ve had some really heavy rain, which has been a bit of a test for us. For the most part we’ve had no leaks. All the roof held up very well. The beds are dry which is great news. We only have a small bit of PVC that has worn behind the rear window. It looks like a replacement piece. It leaked through to where the rear cupboard will be.
How do we re-proof or replace the bit that has leaked? Is it a common place for leaks on this style of Dandy? We can’t make he cupboard until its fixed.
Thanks in advance!

admin July 30, 2009 at 8:34 pm

Hi Sara,

One approach could be to find a local supplier of the pvc curtains used on most heavy goods vehicles and see if they can help?


brian howe August 7, 2009 at 9:27 pm

Dandy Dart For Sale.
Blue and White, underfloor heating plus Awning.
Two new wheels and mini radial tyres and two spare wheels.
Roof linings for unit and awning. Caravan type mesh/blind cassette on the window.
Ready to use
Good condition illness forcing reluctant sale.
£1300 West Sussex

Fran August 8, 2009 at 10:11 pm

Hi, (Old Dandy 4 orange)
Can anyone tell me the purpose of two brackets on the slope (apex) of the tent walls. These are situated half way between the door section and the end walls of the camper. There is a bracket like this on either side of the door section, but no corresponding one on the opposite (window) section.Brackets are identical to those that receive the ridge pole that connects front and back sections.

helen August 9, 2009 at 5:28 pm

hi, re the brackets if you use an original dandy awning the poles to hold the awning roof up use these brackets. thanks Helen
p.s. on a green and white dandy we used an old motor cycle box on the a frame to store leisure battery and it had a bar with clamps on to hold the gas bottle dont know where you would get these but riva leisure (new dandys might know).

Fran August 9, 2009 at 9:09 pm

Hi, thanks Helen, but the brackets I mean are on the inside of the camper. I can see the brackets for the awning, they are on the outside. I just can’t imagine what the internal ones are meant for.

louise August 10, 2009 at 10:23 am

I have a Dandy 4/5 berth late 70’s trailer tent without an awning. Can anyone recommend an awning? I am not worried about it matching, as I am having trouble finding a Dandy awning, so any make of awning would be great.
Thank you for your help.

Fran August 12, 2009 at 8:30 am

In answer to my own query about inner bracket, I have just looked at internal picture of a dandy 4 on a dandy riva sales site and it looks as though there should be an extra roof support bar that I dont have. If this is so, how was it supported on the opposite wall? I just have central roof bar and the 2 folding “hoops”.

Pat August 15, 2009 at 9:49 am

Hi, just bought a Dandy Dart. Not sure of age 1994-96. Winterised roof, but not sure re rest of unit. Does anyone know when Riva winterised all of them as standard? Thanks.

Pat August 16, 2009 at 10:57 am

Alicia, we’ve just bought our Dart, and the roof pole you mention is sticking out. The seller said it’ meant to be like that, and the trailer cover just slips over it. Must say it looks fine and I don’t see how it could go down any other way. Cheers.

lois August 17, 2009 at 9:58 am


Thanks for your nice blog. Just bought a second hand Dandy Designer and had a great holiday with it in France. I parked it over there so we don’t have to tow it 1200 km each time. I would like to know the exact hight of the designer , from ground to roof. But can’t measure that from here …:) I need the sizes since I want to buy an alternative, easy to put up, awning tent. The original awning that came with the designer is in bad condition. Hope to hear from you and keep up your blog!


Alicia August 17, 2009 at 2:04 pm

Thanks Pat,

Fran August 22, 2009 at 10:59 pm

Hi Helen,
Just had a couple of days away in the Dandy, and you are right about the 2 internal brackets. We put the awning up for the first time and it was then that I realised that 2 of the roof bars actually went over the top of the front panel and located in the bracket on the inside. I had assumed that the awning brackets were just the 3 external ones I could see on the door panel.
Thanks for your response. Apparently my model has never had any internal roof supports other than the centre bar and the 2 ‘hoops’. It does look as if it could do with extra support. We still haven’ really got the sequence right for erection or dismantling the tent, it took 15 minutes to put it away today and that was with 3 people, one of whom reckoned he’d got some experience. I have downloaded and printed off the instructons from this site, but not all the stages seem to work out for me! I’m just worried that my partner is not very willing to persevere with my steep learning curve. He isn’t really physically fit enough to be very involved. Anyway, my mini break was very enjoyable and comfortable once the Dandy was organized.


Pat August 23, 2009 at 1:49 pm

Fran, this site is helpful, but (you may already know) there is another Dandy site,
autos.groups.yahoo.com/group/dandyowners that has lots of info on the forum. In the ‘files’ section at the left side of the page there are comprehensive instructions to download on awnings as well as other details re Dandy. You do need to register with yahoo first, and then again on the Dandy forum, but really worth while.

dave September 5, 2009 at 8:48 am

We have recently bought and restored a early 70’s dandy 4 birth and the only thing we are missing is the awning skirt/groundsheet if any one has one for sale or knows of a place near bristol that i can get one cheap please could you help me out and direct me in the general direction,
many thatnks

Yvonne November 25, 2009 at 10:49 pm

Hi Brian Howe
Do you still have your Dandy for sale, I am bidding on ebay, but just in case! I am desparate to get one.
Many thanks

Yvonne December 5, 2009 at 4:58 pm


We have a Dandy Delta, blue and white, is there anyway of telling how old it is, serial number for example that has been logged somewhere? Alternatively what was the years of manufacture of this model? Thanks

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