Roof Top Tent - Chevy Colorado & GMC Canyon
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post #1 of 31 (permalink) Old 04-29-2019, 03:36 AM Thread Starter
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Roof Top Tent

Hello, I'm in the market for a Roof Top Tent and I would like to know:
1) What make and model you have
2) Why you choose that one
3) How much was it


Thank You

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post #2 of 31 (permalink) Old 04-29-2019, 05:54 AM
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Originally Posted by NorCal-ZR2 View Post
Hello, I'm in the market for a Roof Top Tent and I would like to know:
1) What make and model you have
2) Why you choose that one
3) How much was it


Thank You
I heard that Freespirit makes a really nice one.

https://gofsr.com/
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post #3 of 31 (permalink) Old 04-29-2019, 07:27 AM
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I have been researching this as well... Initially I was going to get a Freespirit. Lots os great feedback on those. Then I kept seeing folks that have had several brands of rooftop tents, including the one I was looking at, swithed and move to hardshell tents. The ease of use and quick setup and take down along with improve aerodynamics being the main reasons to do so.

The bad thing about those is the cost...much higher than what I was looking to spend. Then I came across Roofnest ( https://roofnest.com/ ), great reviews and the price is fair. I will be going with one from them.

This is one purchase that I do not want to make twice. Glad I waited.

Best of luck on your search and do let us know what you decide on.

Drive safe!
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post #4 of 31 (permalink) Old 04-29-2019, 07:45 AM
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I donít have a tent on my Canyon, but I do on my FJ60. I went with Alucab. Itís pretty much the gold standard in rooftop tents. Itís aluminum so it is light for a metal tent, but more durable than a fiberglass one. The run for about $4,000.




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post #5 of 31 (permalink) Old 04-29-2019, 08:33 AM
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isnt there more room in a truck bed tent or is the bed needed to haul more stuff?
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post #6 of 31 (permalink) Old 04-29-2019, 08:59 AM
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Originally Posted by pltctycanyon View Post
isnt there more room in a truck bed tent or is the bed needed to haul more stuff?
It's not a question of "room", its all about convenience and comfort. There's more room in a 10 person ground tent.

I had a smittybilt roof top tent, purely for the fact that I could sleep where I parked. Finding a flat, smooth area to drop a tent in the middle of a rock infested desert is not easy or even an option sometimes. Or if you can find smooth, it's likely not flat and vice versa. With the RTT, just drive up on a rock and self level the truck, open up and you're sleeping comfortably. Being off the ground is another nice feature.

I now sleep in the bed of the truck, on a 2/3 width drawer/platform with a camper shell. 1/2 the head space, but cant beat a solid wall cave when it's blowing 30+mph all night.

@NorCal-ZR2
LOTS of companies out there. Figure out what you want out of the tent and your budget, then go from there. CVT and Tepui are pricey, but great quality. Smittybilt is probably the cheapest one and if I were to buy another, i'd throw a little more coin and step up to a Tepui. If I had a garage door with enough height and money, I would do a wedge style cab-over camper like the Vagabond Drifter or the GoFast Camper. Knocks out a camper shell and RTT in the same purchase.

Dont forget to factor in a bed rack to hold the tent as well. That is often overlooked and depending on your taste, can be very expensive on it's own.
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post #7 of 31 (permalink) Old 04-29-2019, 10:17 AM
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I have a Tuff Stuff 4x4 Delta RTT. I picked it merely because of the price. Caught it on sale for $850 shipped. There were a few reviews out there at the time but honestly it was a gamble.

IMO, it has been a great decision. I have had zero issues with the tent and have used it from Florida to Maine. I've rode out thunderstorms in both Cape Lookout, North Carolina and Cape May, New Jersey that probably would have laid over my larger ground tent. I'm not attributing this to just the Tuff Stuff brand but to RTTs in general. The solid tent hoops are less prone flex like aluminum ground tent poles. RTTs are also out of the line of fire for sand whipped up by the wind as it stays lower to the ground.

The Tuff Stuff Delta is also larger in all dimensions than something like a more costly Tepui Ayer 2.

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post #8 of 31 (permalink) Old 04-29-2019, 10:38 AM
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Originally Posted by pltctycanyon View Post
isnt there more room in a truck bed tent or is the bed needed to haul more stuff?

In my case I am using the bed for an ARB Element cooler that I have and a kitchen setup that I want to build. Plus all the gear... couple of diesel tanks, water, etc.


I will have a rack built that would allow the bed cover to open... will make it so that the crossbars (except the one next to the cabin) can be removed. So when the bed is empty, I can still carry tall stuff in there if needed.


I initially started looking at the Smittybilt Overlander Tent. At US$730.00 it was the least expensive with decent reviews. Then you know how it goes... watching YouTube videos, reading more reviews... got me to start looking at the Freespirit Highcountry 55" tent... Then more videos and more feedback and that is when I started folks switching to hardshell tents for the versatility and easy of take down. I do not want to trailer anything, so I want to be able to pack up quickly to use the truck to move around and then make it easy to setup camp again...



Now typing this I realize that Freespirit also has a hard shell tent... how the heck this I missed that... oh, maybe because I wanted the simplicity of manual everything and did not wanted to risk the motor having issues...


That is why I was looking at the Roofnest Sandpiper.



https://roofnest.com/product/sandpiper/


Might need to look again at the Freespirit Adventure Series hardtop tent... since now it is 200.00 less than the Roofnest... hummm



https://gofsr.com/collections/advent...14523235369002



Either way, I just can't spend US$4K plus on a tent... to many other things I want to get for the truck and need to be careful how I am spending the $$....

Drive safe!
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post #9 of 31 (permalink) Old 04-29-2019, 12:18 PM
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Originally Posted by pltctycanyon View Post
isnt there more room in a truck bed tent or is the bed needed to haul more stuff?

I think it may depend on how much "stuff" you pack on your trips. I carry three plano totes and a couple of tool bags when out for a few days. I have a floorless bed tend. It takes me 10 minutes to unload, setup the tent, roll out my bag and kick back.
Being a old man I have to pee several times a night and I don't want to be climbing a ladder when half asleep in the dark. I don't want to climb a ladder at noon when wide awake. I know, Gator aid bottle.

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post #10 of 31 (permalink) Old 04-29-2019, 03:35 PM
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I currently have an Alu-Cab Expedition RTT and have an iKamper X-Cover on order.


The Alu-Cab is a really well designed unit, and IMO is great for one person camping, two can fit, the width is the size of a full size mattress, but it would be two people without stuff, as it's very snug in there.






I've used this on my truck and also my trailer:





The Alu-Cab, while lighter than a lot of Hard Shell Metal RTT, is still very heavy (180lbs) and very long. It takes at least three people to put it on top of the bed rack or trailer rack. Also my experience getting Alu-Cab support has been less than desirable and getting accessories and fixes has been difficult too. Yes they are good products, but you should be aware of the anounces of ownership as well.


I ordered the X-Cover because it's lighter (120lbs), larger (king size mattress) has roof rack on top of the unit (Like the Alu-Cab) and is a hybrid hard shell/soft shell, where the cover is integrated into the tent and you don't remove it to open the tent.


https://www.ikamper.com/pages/xcover
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post #11 of 31 (permalink) Old 04-29-2019, 11:44 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NorCal-ZR2 View Post
Hello, I'm in the market for a Roof Top Tent and I would like to know:
1) What make and model you have
2) Why you choose that one
3) How much was it


Thank You
I've got a Tepui Ayer 2; chose it because it was the smallest/lightest model I could find that I liked the looks of and would work with my equipment. It was about $900 I think, but as others have mentioned, you'll need to mount it to a bed rack, so factor in that cost as well. I was able to get mine mounted single-handedly, and installation wasn't difficult at all.

I do really like the hardshell tents and how quickly they set up, but the costs were just too much for me.

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post #12 of 31 (permalink) Old 04-30-2019, 08:58 PM
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I went with the Anza 1400 from Overland Pros. I got 10% off. It sells for $1200, and then the shipping charge. If youíre close to Sacramento, you can pick it up there. It has good reviews and the material is outstanding. It doesnít need the rain fly to keep dry and you donít have to use poles to open up the sides. Instead, the front and rear have mesh openings that give you a pretty good view of your surroundings.

The zipper was a bit of a pain at first, but after a couple of times opening and closing they seem to be easier.


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post #13 of 31 (permalink) Old 05-03-2019, 12:02 AM
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We went with a Tepui Autana, used, because itís what all the 4xís here in Colorado seem to have on top. And a dude on the local overlanding forum was selling it right when we were shopping. Plenty of RTT activity on Craigslist - no point in buying new.

Regardless of which make/model youíre shopping, look at how the fabric is tensioned and how it might act in a breeze. Our model had an integral rain cover which wasnít tensioned enough by straps, nor by the stock guy lines - and we had one annoying night where breezes and flapping kept us awake.

After a week of use, I craved a more tightly built package, and also desired a more integrated approach. So Iíve put a deposit on a Go Fast Camper (GFC), a great domestic alternative to Alu-Cab. A classic example of first stretching to one price point (fabric RTT), then quickly realizing we shoulda doubled our budget for an integrated hard top model
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post #14 of 31 (permalink) Old 05-03-2019, 01:31 AM
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I just ordered the Smittybilt Overlander RTT from Extreme Terrain. Several retailers have that particular tent on sale right now for $657.49, but Extreme Terrain had free shipping and minimal sales tax for me here in GA. The tent arrived by freight in around 3 days, but I just haven't had a day off to unbox it yet.

I was planning on buying one of the low-profile bed racks from Hot Metal Fab because I want to mount the tent even with or below roof level in order to keep decent mpg. Their webpage and their eBay listings both have the mount pictured on a crew cab Colorado with the Smittybilt tent attached, and the only part of the tent that protrudes above the roofline is the ladder bulge. That particular mount is just under $400, and it looks to be really great quality.

However, I think to start with I'm going to build my own rack using the guide put out by Expedition Georgia USA on YouTube. He has a video for how to do a rack for around $100, and it looks rock solid. Sadly I won't be able to carry my mountain bike in the bed with the front wheel hanging over the tailgate with anything less than a 12' rack or higher, but I refuse to sacrifice the MPG (that's the main reason I bought the Duramax) by having the tent become a sail on the top of my truck. Plus the money I save building my own bed rack will pay for a decent quality hitch-mount bike rack to haul my bike. I'll post pics when I get it all put together!
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post #15 of 31 (permalink) Old 05-03-2019, 04:27 AM
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I currently have an Alu-Cab Expedition RTT and have an iKamper X-Cover on order.

What sort of MPG drop did you see after adding the tent? I've got a gasser, but I'd still like to know.


I don't see the X-cover in their shop, is it pre-order, do I have to call for a price, etc?


Thanks!
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post #16 of 31 (permalink) Old 05-03-2019, 09:48 AM
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What sort of MPG drop did you see after adding the tent? I've got a gasser, but I'd still like to know.


I don't see the X-cover in their shop, is it pre-order, do I have to call for a price, etc?


Thanks!

I had a gas ZR2 for about 6 months before I got the diesel Bison. I can't really tell you the drop with the Alu-Cab mounted because I have a decked drawer system and the Leitner Active Cargo system. I averaged about 12 mpg with my setup in my gas ZR2.


I got in on the X-Cover pre-order, my price was $1950.00 + tax and shipping. I believe they stated standard price is $2999.00, shipping was $299.00 for me in Texas. They got 656 pre-orders that they haven't filled yet, I'm supposed to get mine sometime in June. The site says on-line orders beginning in June. I think they closed pre-orders already, but can't hurt to give them a call.

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post #17 of 31 (permalink) Old 05-03-2019, 10:43 AM
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I had no idea but Thule purchased Tepui... If you look on Thule's site they have all their product line listed in their adventure camping section.
On that note, my buddy runs a thule operation and can get me a NICE discount as a result of that finding!

I've searched this idea and mulled it over many of times... My 200 ground tent will suffice for now lol!
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post #18 of 31 (permalink) Old 05-03-2019, 07:16 PM
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It's great there's so many option RTT nowadays to fit everyones needs.

When it came time for me to get off the ground and buy a RTT I was shocked at the prices but I decided to make a one time purchase that would last a lifetime and not be wanting for something else. All my research lead me back to Autohome, the original RTT. I'm very happy with my Maggiolina Grand Tour after spending many nights in it in all types climates across North America in the last year.

It's pretty lightweight at 128 pounds, the small version is roomy enough for two and the highly breathable fabric and ventilation makes for comfortable nights even in humid conditions. Never had any condensation inside in any weather and it's been solid in winds up to 40mph in Death Valley and Baja. The flat roof is quite handy if your lady friend isn't short, haha.
The attention to detail in the construction along with simple things like the convenient storage pockets and gear loft inside are great, it's obvious to me this product is the culmination of 60 years of experience. The only thing I did to it was add some red LED lights and solar panels on top, the rest leaves nothing to be desired.
Setup or breakdown takes about 2 minutes and all bedding, ladder and some fishing poles store inside the tent.
It's taken some hits from low tree limbs on trails with no issue and if I do damage it fixing fiberglass is easy and on the road serviceable.
Andrew at Autohome US has been great to deal with when ordering and after sales support, couldn't ask for more really.


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Also, here's a great resource for folks researching RTT's:

https://expeditionportal.com/?s=rtt&submit=





















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post #19 of 31 (permalink) Old 05-03-2019, 08:34 PM
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Originally Posted by emulous74 View Post
I currently have an Alu-Cab Expedition RTT and have an iKamper X-Cover on order.





The Alu-Cab is a really well designed unit, and IMO is great for one person camping, two can fit, the width is the size of a full size mattress, but it would be two people without stuff, as it's very snug in there.













I've used this on my truck and also my trailer:











The Alu-Cab, while lighter than a lot of Hard Shell Metal RTT, is still very heavy (180lbs) and very long. It takes at least three people to put it on top of the bed rack or trailer rack. Also my experience getting Alu-Cab support has been less than desirable and getting accessories and fixes has been difficult too. Yes they are good products, but you should be aware of the anounces of ownership as well.





I ordered the X-Cover because it's lighter (120lbs), larger (king size mattress) has roof rack on top of the unit (Like the Alu-Cab) and is a hybrid hard shell/soft shell, where the cover is integrated into the tent and you don't remove it to open the tent.





https://www.ikamper.com/pages/xcover


Iím also looking to order an x-cover.

Were you a part of the January/February Ďsuper early birdí order time frame or the recent March ordering time?

I ask because Iím getting somewhat confusing info from them as far as delivery time frame after order is placed.

When do you expect delivery of yours?


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post #20 of 31 (permalink) Old 05-05-2019, 04:33 PM
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...I'm going to build my own rack using the guide put out by Expedition Georgia USA on YouTube. He has a video for how to do a rack for around $100, and it looks rock solid.
@PortLife912 - Just a precaution - I saw a different YouTuber (a guy in UT with a popular channel) try and make an over-bed rack at that price range. His key mistake was relying on aluminum towers, which fatigued and broke (under the weight of the RTT) while he was off pavement. He was lucky that there was a Jeeper on the trail who helped re-anchor his RTT provisionally so he could get home.

I flirted with this idea as well, but unless youíre making your own towers out of steel tubing (e.g. 2Ē x 6Ē square tubing), youíre not going to get close to $100. Aluminum wonít last, which is why Yakima, Thule, Frontrunner, and basically everyone else uses steel for their riser towers. FWIW, Iím a mechanical engineer, so while building racks is not my forte, seeing evidence of something done too cheaply (and failing) usually resonates with basic mechanical design principles. My 2c.
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