Camp Westfalia

Archive for Beverage Holder

Product Review: Thermos Sipp Travel Mug

This sleek stainless steel 16-ounce travel mug with leak-proof lid keeps drinks hot and cold for hours.


Dimensions: 3.5 Dia x 5 Dia x 8 Height inches (89 x 127 x 203 MM)
Capacity: 16 fluid ounces (470 ml)

  • Keeps liquids hot for 5 hours and cold for 9 hours
  • Leak-proof lid with one-hand push-button operation
  • Lid is BPA-free and has a built- in tea hook for tea bags or most loose-leaf infusers
  • Cleans easily

On a long road trip, especially if you’re starting early each day or driving late, a caffeinated beverage is often your best companion. You know, after your actual travelling companion …

And a dependable travel mug is a crucial component of that caffeine-delivery system, one that keeps hot stuff hot, or cold stuff cold, as needed. One that doesn’t leak or spill, and which feels good in the hand. We’ve gone through a few mugs over the years of Westy travelling, in a variety of materials and shapes and prices. And we’ve frequently been disappointed after a while, for one reason or another.

But, like finding the perfect roadtrippin’ partner, I think we may have found The One.

Get the Thermos Sipp here

First Impressions

Thermos has been making vacuum-insulated beverage flasks for over 100 years, and they know their stuff. Their Sipp travel mugs are tall, slim, stainless steel flasks, narrow at the bottom and tapering to a wider top, and they fit well in your hand.

The screw-on plastic lid has an integrated valve operated by a small button, which securely seals the beverage inside to prevent spilling or heat loss.

On The Road or In Camp

The Thermos Sipp fits well in nearly all beverage holders, and is a perfect match for our Sports Imports Folding Cup Holders. When travelling, it’s easy to grab, depress the push button, and sip your favorite beverage.

The Sipp keeps coffee scaldingly hot for a couple of hours, and amazingly drinkable for a couple hours more. Cold beverages stay cold even longer.

Though tall and potentially top heavy when full, the Sipp has never toppled out of our cup holders, and even when knocked over on a picnic table the sealed lid prevents spills.

The Sipp is available with or without a handle, and comes in six colors. Most colors include a white lid, but the Silver model comes with a Black lid, which can sometimes make it difficult to see the two sipping slots. I simply marked my lid with a Sharpie, to prevent embarrassing dribbles.

Cleanup is easy with a good wash and rinse, though the underside of the lid’s valve will benefit from a periodic disassembly and a thorough cleaning, especially if you often enjoy cream, flavored coffees, or sugary beverages.

In The Long Run

We’ve been using our Thermos Sipps for a few years now, for Westy travelling and for everyday driving. I even use mine for multi-day kayak-camping trips, the no-leak lid allowing me to carry hot coffee ready at hand, strapped to my foredeck.

Setting out for a day of windshield touring, we can easily make it all morning with two steaming mugs of coffee or tea, and the Sipp’s no-spill design is perfectly suited for the rough-and-tumble environment of a camper van.

On those long driving days, the Thermos Sipp travel mug is the perfect travelling companion!

Hits: keeps beverages hot and cold for hours, stylish design fits well in hand, no-spill lid, easy cleaning
Misses: can be somewhat tippy when full, lid valve requires periodic disassembly for cleaning

Get the Thermos Sipp here

Product Review: Sports Imports Folding Cup & Beverage Holder

A German-made universal-fit OEM-quality auto & RV cup holder that folds out of the way when not in use


Dimensions, Open: 4.75W x 4D x 4H”
Dimensions, Closed: 4.75W x 1.5D x 4H”

After breaking one too many cheap flimsy cupholders, what highway traveler hasn’t at some point wished for a compact, durable auto beverage holder? One that automatically adapts to most sizes of drinks, and which can be mounted on almost any flat vertical or horizontal surface?

Considering that the typical modern car boasts twice as many beverage holders as seats, the 30-year-old Vanagon is woefully under-equipped with exactly … zero factory cupholders.

A mere inconvenience during a daily commute, this lack of beverage holders can become an onerous travel torment for long-distance roadtrippers suffering caffeine deprivation.

The Sports Imports Folding Cup Holder offers an easy solution, in a compact folding form factor which adapts to a variety of cup and bottle sizes, and which can be mounted almost anywhere. Made in Germany by an aftermarket supplier to BMW and Porsche, these beverage holders are available as a factory accessory for the Mercedes E Class cars.

Get the Sports Imports Folding Cup Holder here

First Impressions

Sports-Beverage-Holder-OpenThe Sports Imports Folding Cup Holder arrives as an unassuming fully enclosed little flat block, easily opened at the front latch. But the deceptively simple device reveals the genius of its complexity, as an articulated spring-loaded assemblage deploys itself and snaps into place inside.

The cup holder includes mounting screws, and small plastic strips presumably intended to serve as standoff washers when mounting on curved or uneven surfaces. The inside corners of the holder feature small dimples which serve as easy guides for drilling your mounting holes. Just choose a convenient spot, drill your pilot holes, and screw the holder into place.

A few suitable places in the Vanagon cab area are the interior door panels, the large heater cover plate below the dash, or perhaps the sides of the automatic transmission shift lever housing.

I opted to mount my new beverage holders on the side of the passenger seat base, near the floor in the walk-though passageway between the front seats. This puts the holders within easy reach of both front seats, yet they fold up and out of the way when not being used.

On The Road or In Camp

Sports-Imports-Beverage-Holder-ClosedFirmly mounted somewhere convenient in your Vanagon cab, the Sports Imports Folding Cup Holder adapts to a variety of cans, bottles, cups and mugs, and securely holds all but the tallest or most top-heavy drink cups, even on rough dirt roads.

But when not in use its sleek design easily folds flat, out of the way and protected from damage.

In The Long Run

The Sports Imports Folding Cup Holder has held up well to the rigors of Westy traveling, standing up to rambunctious kids, dirty dogs, and other abuse. It’s not indestructible of course, and a misplaced hiking boot or loaded luggage bag could snap it off at the hinges, but it will endure most anything short of such abuse.

Sports-Imports-Beverage-Holder-Closed2We’ve found that the inevitable soda and flavored-coffee goo can eventually gunk up the internal folding mechanism, but this is easily cleaned with a bit of warm soapy water and an old toothbrush. If the beverage holders become difficult to open or close, don’t force them but give them a good cleaning, and perhaps a light spritz of silicone spray lubricant.

Though costing more than most other aftermarket cupholders, the Sports Imports Folding Cup Holder is no flimsy gas-station-variety beverage holder, but an invaluable addition to any roadtripping vehicle.

Hits: sleek and sturdy design, adaptable, can be mounted on nearly any vertical or horizontal surface
Misses: can be difficult to clean interior, somewhat pricey

Get the Sports Imports Folding Cup Holder here

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