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View Full Version : RTT as base camp?



rsbmg
02-24-2012, 07:58 AM
I'm wondering if anyone specifically with a tacoma (2nd Gen), has developed an easily removable rack for their RTT tent allowing them to remove the rack with attached RTT and deploy it at a base camp. There are many places I go where I like to set-up a base camp and then go on daily off road trips from there. My thinking was to have the RTT mounted to the rack but set up in such a manner as to make the rack easily removable to just set the rack and tent on the ground.

As a caveat I am not a fan of tents or at least traditional tents. I don't like the set up, I don't like the breakdown, I don't like them in high wind and I don't like them in heavy rain. In nice weather I could just put the tailgate down and sleep fine but I do camp often in the conditions above. RTT's fair much better in inclement weather and negate the hassles of set up and breakdown in inclement weather. Set up and breakdown is most important next only to their serviceability in inclement weather. Specifically I'm looking at an eezi-awn.

Caveat 2. I have a buddy with a flipak and well, lets just say we have been in some rough weather on more than one occassion and the flipak just didn't cut it on multiple occassions and its not an option for me. Heavy heavy rain with the fly in place it failed as it did in heavy wind.

So, the options I am exploring are custom rack with eezi-awn or custom topper with slide-outs:D Dont try and steal my idea either! If I go that route I will take orders though:sombrero:

Anyway, curious if anyone has done anything like this so their RTT could become a basecamp.

Thanks guys

Blackdawg
02-24-2012, 08:27 AM
Build an off road trailer and just keep the tent on it. There are a TON of ppl that do that and then just disconnect the trailer and go wheel for the day.

Then you have more room for storage and can make a custom kitchenette if you want. Or just water, fuel..whatever you want! Better then a camper cause a well build one will go anywhere your truck will for the most part allowing you to camp where ever you would like!

Caoboy
02-24-2012, 01:39 PM
I'd say go with a topper and sleep in the back. I'm in the same boat, I don't prefer sleeping in a tent anymore, I'd rather sleep on a flat surface with no rocks, and it just seems so much more convenient to toss everything out of the rig (because you are setting everything up anyways and it'll be out of the rig right) and sleeping in it.

WU7X
02-24-2012, 03:00 PM
For almost 10 years I had a Autohome Columbus RTT mounted to a Raven topper on my 2000 Taco Xcab. Took it everywhere and would stop and setup camp in minutes. I never did any herculean rock climbing with the setup but did trails such as the Lockard Basin trail with it on the roof. No problems. Why do you need to take it off?

trump
02-24-2012, 03:34 PM
an easily removable rack for their RTT tent allowing them to remove the rack with attached RTT and deploy it at a base camp.

I will go ahead and speak for everybody when I say a rack with a RTT is by nature not easily removable. Unless, you always bring another strong body with you.

Finlay
02-24-2012, 03:44 PM
The rack I built for my taco (http://www.expeditionportal.com/forum/threads/73545-2012-Taco-slow-build-The-Escape-Pod?p=1045018#post1045018) is pretty easily removable - 6 bolts and it pops right off.

That said - even being made with an eye towards lightness - it is still about 60-70 lbs. With the RTT on it, it approaches 200.

Ultimately, I'll be upgrading to a trailer.

Caoboy
02-24-2012, 04:02 PM
You could also go for a tent cot. That'd be a much cheaper solution and it would work as the setup is very quick like a RTT.

rsbmg
02-24-2012, 04:18 PM
Thanks for the responses thus far. To address a few of the posts:

I have considered a trailer, however its considerably more expensive than a rack and I think in the grand scheme of things it will be a hindrance to getting places that I want to go. Primarily though for what I would spend on an offroad trailer to sleep in a tent I could buy a very nice trailer and live in the lap of luxury.

I want to remove it because I typically dont go camping just to camp, I go to explore and offroad. I dont want a load of camping struff and RTT hindering my offroad performance.

Easily removable is relative of course. When I say easily I mean something that can be accomplished by myself including re-loading it within about 15 minutes. Although seldom will I be alone so any additional set of hands will make it even easier.

I think I read the eezi-awn is like 120 lbs. plus the rack like another 120 lbs? If I built the rack to have a flat bottom I could put one end up on the truck and then lift the end on the ground up and slide the whole thing in to place. Think a sheet of plywood with the RTT attached (just for visualization) This would also serve as a cover for my truck keeping items underneath secure and dry.

I'm still brainstorming this just thought perhaps I might find someone who has already done something similar.

Thanks!

Finlay
02-24-2012, 04:47 PM
Before my wife and I decided on the RTT, we were looking at a truck tent. The Kodiak Canvas one (http://www.kodiakcanvas.com/truck-tents/) came highly recommended.

You might consider that.

rsbmg
02-24-2012, 06:00 PM
The shell idea would be fine except I have a 5' bed. The truck tent idea is not an option for two reasons which really is my main to problems I'm trying to address.

1. I dont want to be tied to my campsite.
2. I need something that will hold up to extreme (within reason of course) winds and rain
3. I want fast easy set-up and breakdown.
4. Regardless of if I plan on staying in camp or not, I still want the ability to free up my truck bed. For instance, I was camping last weekend when a young kid crashed on his dirtbike right in front of my camp. The bike was not operational after the crash. I threw the bike in my truck and had him and the bike back to his camp in 20 minutes. It would have taken him hours to push his bike back to camp. I like this aspect of owning a truck. A more permanent rack or even a shell would have made helping this kid to the degree I did, impossible.

So the tent or trailer solution is most conducive to my goals however trailer is probably out for reasons above and traditional tent is out because they all suck in high winds and set-up/breakdown is more than I want to deal with.

Anyway, really just hoping someone who has addressed the concerns above with a viable solution stumbles in here Thanks for all the replies so far!

pray4surf
02-24-2012, 07:37 PM
Fun to mull over... What if you fitted your rack with one of these at each corner

http://tweetys.com/mechanical4-cornercamperjacksarcticwhite.aspx

Simply crank the legs down and drive out from underneath it... Bonus - you still sleep off the ground...

Drop a few grand and you can raise/lower via remote control
http://tweetys.com/wirelessremotecamperjacksyetem.aspx

montypower
02-24-2012, 08:46 PM
My ARB tent takes less than 10 minutes to fully take down (maybe 5 with help). Are you really in that big of a hurry? It isn't inconvenient to take down or setup. And honestly... I'd rather take it with me than leave a $1,500+ tent behind.

rsbmg
02-24-2012, 09:41 PM
Thanks for the links, That is exactly what I have been tossing around. I have several ideas which are viable to include some type of collapsible or folding legs. I don't want to get to crazy with the idea though and end up with a $5000 tree stand haha

Tbird
02-24-2012, 10:34 PM
Like you I've been debating this issue at great length. I've been drooling for a flippac. Never heard any negative feedback like that before, that certainly concerns me. Plus I'm not sure I want it on my truck all the time. I believe your idea below is genius! If the design is well executed it could be an easy one-man operation to remove and replace the platform/tent. With this set up you could deploy the tent, in place, on the truck...or deploy off the truck depending on the conditions. For example...if you set up camp late and plan to move on the next morning...and truck deployment would make sense. If you are base-camping, an off-truck deployment would be better. I think I will pursue this idea myself...and bag the flippac idea. I have a good friend that has machined/welded for a living. He is great at design and construction ( http://www.expeditionportal.com/forum/threads/56087-New-to-the-forum-building-a-trailer-what-do-you-think?highlight=rockdawg ). I bet we can come up with something for my Gen2 Tacoma.


Thanks for the responses thus far. To address a few of the posts:
If I built the rack to have a flat bottom I could put one end up on the truck and then lift the end on the ground up and slide the whole thing in to place. Think a sheet of plywood with the RTT attached (just for visualization) This would also serve as a cover for my truck keeping items underneath secure and dry.
Thanks!

rsbmg
02-24-2012, 11:23 PM
My ARB tent takes less than 10 minutes to fully take down (maybe 5 with help). Are you really in that big of a hurry? It isn't inconvenient to take down or setup. And honestly... I'd rather take it with me than leave a $1,500+ tent behind.

Well here's the deal. I have been caught in inclement weather more than once. I want to be able to rip the cover off that thing, crawl in and be out of the storm. Same thing for breaking camp, if its dumping rain I don't want to be screwing around any longer than I have too. Many people often put camping in the context of a beautiful day, gentle breeze rustling the leaves of the tall oak, clear skys and 70 degrees. Now that's great when its like that but when its 34 degrees, 45 mph winds and dumping gallons of water on you when your setting up or breaking down camp, well that just sucks. I like to plan for the suck and hope for the best.

rsbmg
02-24-2012, 11:33 PM
Like you I've been debating this issue at great length. I've been drooling for a flippac. Never heard any negative feedback like that before, that certainly concerns me. Plus I'm not sure I want it on my truck all the time. I believe your idea below is genius! If the design is well executed it could be an easy one-man operation to remove and replace the platform/tent. With this set up you could deploy the tent, in place, on the truck...or deploy off the truck depending on the conditions. For example...if you set up camp late and plan to move on the next morning...and truck deployment would make sense. If you are base-camping, an off-truck deployment would be better. I think I will pursue this idea myself...and bag the flippac idea. I have a good friend that has machined/welded for a living. He is great at design and construction ( http://www.expeditionportal.com/forum/threads/56087-New-to-the-forum-building-a-trailer-what-do-you-think?highlight=rockdawg ). I bet we can come up with something for my Gen2 Tacoma.

You know I don't want to discourage you from the flipak, many people love them and despite the couple instances where it failed, my buddy loves his. But I just don't want that thing on my truck all the time especially when doing some serious trails.

oliverlove
02-25-2012, 02:51 AM
RSBMG - It sounds like you are more of a Hardcore wheeler than an Overlander. What I mean when I say that, by mouting RTT's and carrying camping gear we sacrifice some of our vehicles abilities. Extra weight, higher center of gravity, etc.

I don't believe you will be happy with the legs on a platform, that you can then drive the truck out from under. Take a look at either a rack that keeps the tent above the bed, so the bed is still open to use, or use an off road teardrop trailer.

Opening a RTT in the rain is just as crappy as trying to open a flippac I would assume. Opening mine in the blowing wind and rain is pretty miserable.

https://www.allprooffroad.com/05tacomatrailarmor/tacomabedracks

Rockpig
02-26-2012, 09:59 PM
Don't discount a camel 4x4 RTT, I have it and you get more for your money compared to any other company. Here's the write up on mine and how I mounted it to the Tundra.
http://forum.ih8mud.com/camping-outdoor-gear/453355-camel-4x4-rtt.html

rsbmg
02-27-2012, 01:02 AM
The more I churn this up inside my brain, the more I think a trailer might be the ticket. My GF and I are kinda digging those ALINER trailers, just not so sure how durable they would be to constant offroad abuse. Probably going to slide on over to the trailer section and see what I can find. The RTT/basecamp idea is not completely off the table of course but when its 34 degrees and dumping rain by the gallons with 50 mph winds, a hard side trailer is going to be exactly where I want to be vs any of the available RTT tent options. I KNOW that is where the little lady would want to be haha.

I like the idea of having everthing ready to go as well. When the zombies come, back up hook up and leave, no loading up and when I get to camp unhook and the truck is free to do with as
I please, climb trails, haul wood, help out a kid with a broken dirtbike, or run into town when I discover I didn't pack enough beer:sombrero:

We were thinking about an RV as well, hook the truck up and tow it to the trails but I think in the grand scheme of things that would be a little too limiting. For instance I did the Mojave Road trail with a friend and a RV is certainly not driving that but an offroad towable trailer would for sure.

So many options!

enigmadsm
02-27-2012, 01:32 AM
what about a pick up truck bed into a trailer, with a camper shell on it, or even a camper shell for the times you need a quick entry and an SUV tent coming off the back for more space/longer duration camping
That way it is still formidable to off road abuse (spring over axle and matching tire size to your truck as well a a 3500# trailer axle with matching bolt pattern, which really isn't expensive), and you can source late 80s/early 90s toyotas for pretty cheap (non running condition or something).
Then just fab up the tongue coming off the truck frame, throw a storage box/water/batteries/kitchenette/whatever in front of the bed to give it some tongue weight.

I don't see how it could be that much heavier than something like the 1/4 ton M101 military trailers. Those things aren't very heavy, but are built pretty stout

rsbmg
02-27-2012, 03:45 AM
As I said I change my mind ever y10 minutes but this has me intrigued as well as the GF. http://www.expeditionportal.com/forum/threads/67220-My-Off-Road-A-Liner?highlight=ALINER

the dude
02-27-2012, 02:43 PM
go with the trailer and RTT. Best thing we ever did for a base camp.

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v511/bjtaylor/Marmaduke/IMG_1131.jpg

rsbmg
02-27-2012, 10:42 PM
I am about 80% sure I don't want to do any kind of tent. Trailer is a definite consideration as is some type of field removable camper. I'm all about hard side protection from the elements with the ability to not have my truck loaded down for offroad use.

Hill, Bill E.
02-27-2012, 11:12 PM
I am about 80% sure I don't want to do any kind of tent.......

I have one of the 'lesser expensive' RTT's on an M416, and use it for basecamp all the time.

I can also drag it just about anywhere my Jeeps will go, if need be.

Quick set-up/tear down, even in nasty weather, it's not that bad.

I've camped in heavy rain, freezing temps, high winds, heavy snow, and combinations of all of them.

My RTT has held up great, and is nice and cozy.

A hardside camper with little to no set up would be nice, but to get one that will be durable, is going to cost a few dineros.

I have around $1500 into my set up, and that's including the 12V deep cycle battery and 400 watt inverter.

http://i114.photobucket.com/albums/n274/hillbillecj7/Adventure%20Trailer%20Project/trailerCJ001.jpg

Granted, I got a really great deal on the M416, but they are out there for under $1000 still.

rsbmg
02-28-2012, 01:53 AM
I like those set-ups, well honestly I like about every set-up I have seen, It matters most to those that live and camp from them and if people like em thats what its all about. I just can't seem to make up my mind because I'm trying so desperately to find "perfect" for everything which in reality probably doesn't exist. In the meantime I make do with my REI tent and a queensize aerobed. The tent has not leaked and has not blown over but its not the best nights sleep, set-up and breakdown are not fun, thankfully I have always been set-up before the weather kicked in but in those conditions I would have just stayed in the front seat of the truck.

Funny, I was talking to my buddy with the flippack today and I said, if it wasnt for those two trips to the mojave road where it totally sucked I probably would already have something by now and be perfectly happy. But after seeing how bad weather can get when you are not expecting it to I am gunshy about what I buy, especially since no matter what I get its going to be 6-14k Thats a lot of coin to put into something that sucks or is just "ok" when the weather turns.

Appreciate the comments and of course pictures always help!

GGimbert
02-28-2012, 02:25 PM
I found a rusted up 416 type trailer for $200. Put another $100 in shackles, U-bolts, lights, and pintle lunette. The tent has a permanent home and the estra storage is great. I would love to have a top for it to mount the tent to but just have not dedicated the $ to it.

Went from this
88882

To this

88883

While retaining the crossbars so that I can loosen the 4 turn buckles that hold it to the trailer and reattach it to the truck with the original 4 bolts. 10 minute change over. You may want to consider setting yours up so it goes both ways for maximum versatility.

JCMatthews
02-28-2012, 06:04 PM
I vote trailer as well. I am saving the mullah to purchase the RTT to go on the 416 I already have. However the removable RTT is intriguing. I was thinking you could set it up with legs like an ambulance gurney. It could roll to the back of your truck, and as you pushed it in the legs would fold and it would roll right in. The reverse would work getting it out. One person could pull it out and then you could lower it down to the ground to sleep in and be pretty stable. Just my $.02.

rsbmg
03-01-2012, 02:37 AM
I think I scrapped this idea and am zeroing in on the Aliner Sport trailer:Astrologist:

Surfy
03-02-2012, 09:55 AM
I also have done a lot of brainstorming arround how to be able to do serious offroad - and to have a good camping solution too.

http://jeep42.ru/images/200_3.jpg

http://jeep42.ru/images/200_4.jpg

We have no kids, no dog - and dont need the 7 Seats of the Land Cruiser. So we plan to build an storage / camping area behind - like showed on the pictures.

Shure - we will have to carry some weight - but the weight is at a low point - and we should be able to take most of the tracks.

I plan to take a 32l Freezer, and an watertank with 80l - so we can build storage for camp kittchen, eating - drinking and clothes.

Unfortunately i dont think that there are space left - for camping equippement like chairs, and we will have to add a Storage-Box on the Roof. This allows too a side awning.

http://www.kruger-2-kalahari.com/images/THULE_MBU8306_IJFR-1.jpg

http://www.kruger-2-kalahari.com/images/Thule_MBU8068_IJFR.jpg

They are aerodynamic and lightweight - the result is less noise and a better milage - compared to the boxes you see normally in the us and australia.

So we are able to take also some comfort stuff with us, like a set of deck chairs - and not only director chairs or how the heck they are called.

http://www.salzburg24.at/2008/06/news-20080602-01431593-image1.jpg

Thats our plan - but if we can realize it and the result comes like we want - we dont know.