The Metalian Parthian is the beginning of a new era for Metalian. We have chosen the name “Parthian” for this particular model because it represents the skill and balance required by Parthian horsemen in battle. Some trailers are easier to build, but the “Midi” offers a special challenge because of the higher centre of gravity relative to its shortness, and the dimensional ratios that place the wheels further back than one would normally do in order to get the required balance.
(A Parthian horseman was able to shoot on the gallop and to the rear whilst in retreat or feigned retreat, hence the term Parthian Shot. As a point of interest, this may have resulted in the term “parting shot”, but this remains unclear.)
We feel that the names Mini, Midi and Maxi have worked well for distinguishing the three models during the establishment phase of our brand, but these names are also limiting in introducing new models, particularly those smaller than the Mini. For the moment, Australia will still know the models by their original names as this helps identify the size difference easier in this new market. Except that both the Mini and Midi will be known as Midi’s as they have the identical platform size. The Mini is just a lower height Midi, so this will probably be known as a “Flat Midi”. This will allow us to produce the new smaller Metalian, which will be known as the Mini in Australia. In South Africa this model is known as the Bowhunter and is due out in the second half of 2016.
Most of our followers will view the Parthian as just a rework or facelift of the Midi, but the Parthian has numerous small changes that make a big difference. The re-design was necessary because at the time of designing the Midi, the same design details as the Maxi were used. Our design brief was to limit the box size to 1500 mm, while still being able to accommodate the National Luna 52 litre “Weekender” fridge in the front door. This proved most challenging and a compromise of 50 mm was made in the length, taking the box length to 1550 mm. In practice however, the balance was not as good as it could be. This was also partly due to maintaining other design criteria used on the Maxi. One of which was the decision to keep the drawbar assembly the same as the Maxi in order to maintain compatibility between models. The first 10 Mini’s and Midi’s were built with this drawbar. A new Mini/Midi drawbar was designed for the 11th trailer upwards in each model.
Early 2015 saw National Luna launch their new 60 litre Fridge/Freezer which no longer fitted into the Mini or Midi door aperture. With hindsight this was a blessing in disguise, because it forced us to re-look at the design from an entirely new perspective. It was this that got us thinking of better solutions all round.
Here’s a list of what’s different:
- Box length increased by 100 mm to 1650 mm
- “Service panel” is 20 mm deeper and holds water, filters and electrics. This also provides access for easier reticulation, cleaning and service
- Front fridge door 20 mm wider to take the new National Luna 60 litre fridge freezer.
- Mullion between side doors 40 mm narrower
- Drop down door increases by 100 mm in length
- Drop down door locking bars moved to the rear – ease of operation
- Wider mudguards by 20 mm (and slightly remodeled)
- Inhouse manufactured stainless steel hinges (nylon sleeves and brass pinned) – stainless steel cupsquare bolts – enhanced appearance, faster and more accurate assembly
- “Waterproof” quick couplers for removeable taps and shower connections
- Nickel plated brass cable glands
- Battery rebates 30 mm under side cupboards
- Rebates above the side cupboards to allow for wider table or solar panels
- New water system fittings that use silicone seals – we’re moving to “dry” joints so that these can always be taken apart and re-assembled without the need for sealants.
- Rear departure angle changed to suit the shorter rear – previously this was taken from the Maxi – this allows us to move the weight further to the rear by a massive 217 mm.
- New drawbar front and rear brackets
- Double eye leafspring suspension using 18mm grease able pins (identical to Toyota)
- Leafsprings split into a main spring and support spring
- Leafspring length changed from the 650 mm length to 950 mm