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  #61  
Old August 13th, 2004, 05:50 PM
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Nicholas Orros
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ok... here's a couple of more detailed shots of the actual 'bars' I had made up to my spec's.

I gave the local welding shop a visioshop (visio + photoshop) drawing of exactly what I wanted.

They exceeded my expectations. (mainly by making the part that actually touched the bottom of the rooftop tent just a little higher than the top of the roofrack bar... why is this important? Because mounting this tent on LRNA90FSRR, means that it's pretty high up there... for lack of better words).

Nicholas
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  #62  
Old August 16th, 2004, 12:44 PM
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Torrence
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What a great set-up! Can you say "high center of gravity"? And talk about wind resistance...but isn't it all about torque, according to LRNA?!

That looks great.

So jealous...

And your rack is stock otherwise?
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  #63  
Old August 16th, 2004, 04:17 PM
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Nicholas Orros
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Torrence,

Yeah, it's up there, but up there good.

There was just NO other way without sacrificing 'noise', the 'rack' or spending a lot for my 1st idea which was to have a 'spring-loaded' lift that sat inside the basket and you just released a spring and it 'popped' up...
Kinda like those old beds that go under a normal bed & just 'pop-up'. That would have been cool. We drew it out but it was too much work.

Yes, the rack is 100% stock.

Now, I got the bars on a Wednesday and we left Thursday afternoon so I didn't have a lot of time to figure out a good mounting point... but for the next trip I'm going to mount it a little farther back perhaps and create some sort of 'scoop' to sit in front and 'deflect' some air. But honestly the aerodynamics weren't that bad... the ONLY time it was a pain was '18-wheeler land'... haha...

makes it interesting though...

Thanks for the compliments eh!

Nicholas
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  #64  
Old August 16th, 2004, 06:53 PM
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Is that bracket shown in the first pic available off the shelf, or was it fabbed too?
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  #65  
Old August 17th, 2004, 09:11 AM
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Nicholas Orros
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Torrence,

No, the first pic was the actual bar that was fabricated for me. There were 2 made.

The bar is really just a piece of 1x2 metal with a notch taken out of it if you look closely... then a say 2inch pipe that was cut in half with little pieces welded to it to make a 'bracket' out of it...
The thickest part in the middle of the bar was 47 inches because it just had to clear the bottom lip of the tent which was about 48 inches. Then a couple of inches to make room for the bracket nuts & bolts, then the actual 'top arc' of the pipes had to be 52.5 inches (or really close, can't remember) to sit perfectly on top of the roof rack.

Works like a charm... No butchering of LRNA90FSRR here.




Nicholas
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  #66  
Old August 18th, 2004, 12:45 PM
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David Marchand
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Nick, any pics of the tent folded on the rack? Just curious. I got your emails but my antivirus stripped the attachments...
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  #67  
Old August 19th, 2004, 08:49 AM
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Nicholas Orros
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Dave,

Yes sir, I've got some pics of it all folded up... except they're at home. Will get them tonight & post... unless you find an email address that will let you download attachments.

Cheers,

Nicholas
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  #68  
Old August 19th, 2004, 12:38 PM
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Deon van der Heever
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Hi Everybody

Out here in South Africa we can ONLY go camping with rooftop tents, unless you want to be bothered by predators at night. Most of the game parks in the neighbouring countries don't have the campsites fenced in. So the animals (especially hyena's) roam the campsites at night looking for food.

The Hannibal tents are really taking off over here but the two most prominent rooftop tent makers are Eezi_Awn and Echo. They are both around UD$ 700-00 in our money. I don't think that the Echo tents are exported to the US (yet!), but it is a very good tent made of ripstop canvas. It is durable and weather resistant. I have tried both Eezi-Awn and Echo, and they are both very good. I went and looked at the Hannibal tents the other day, and I must say I am impressed. They have a new design which is called The Impi, and it really isn't a chore to open and close.

I am including some pics of my own tents (both Echo) The one on the red Range Rover have been sold (together with the Rover) in the meantime. I am also including some links to the South African websites for Echo and Eezi Awn.

http://www.echo4x4.co.za/
http://www.eezi-awn.co.za/

Also check out some of the sites below!

http://heine.nusa.co.za/Links.html
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  #69  
Old August 19th, 2004, 06:45 PM
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Nicholas Orros
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Dave,

I hope these will do.


Nicholas
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  #70  
Old August 19th, 2004, 07:09 PM
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How much does it weigh? Easy to take it all off for the winter and such?

Do you mind my asking what it cost to have the bracketry fabbed?
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  #71  
Old August 19th, 2004, 07:21 PM
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Nicholas Orros
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Torrence,

I believe the weight is about 110lbs, if that.

I got it up there by myself, but taking it down takes 2 people. Not because of the weight, it's just that it's kinda bulky... like a big 'cheez-it', as I like to call it.
I had to call a friend of mine over to help, took us about 2 seconds. (we're both 6ft+ ... the height helps a little I guess)

I paid $315 plus tax. $250 for the bars & $65 for the powder coating.

And you don't want to drive around for more than 'expedition use' if you can help it. You definitely notice it. When I put the safari roof rack on people said I would notice it but I really didn't... with the tent, that's another story.

Nicholas
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  #72  
Old August 19th, 2004, 07:39 PM
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Yeah, but how cool are you when you whip out that tent on the roof?!

The "bitchin' factor alone" is on EXTREME. I love it.

(just slightly more than those lights)
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  #73  
Old August 20th, 2004, 01:13 AM
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Nicholas Orros
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Thanks for the compliment.

It's a fairly cool mod, but I really got it for times like the attached pic.

It was a truly 'authentic' Land Rover experience.


Cheers,

Nicholas Orros
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  #74  
Old November 29th, 2005, 04:08 PM
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JAMES MARKS
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Nick,

I'm reviving your old thread on roof tents...
Are you still happy with your tent and set-up?
I just got a LR OEM Safari Rack installed on my soft-top D90 and would like to mount a roof-top tent.
I like the idea of not modifying my LR basket... do you think your welder could duplicate the custom bars and brackets he made for you?


-James Marks
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  #75  
Old November 29th, 2005, 05:16 PM
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Read Kerlin
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James,

I noticed you are in L.A. and thought i would chime in. I don't know where you plan to do your most of your wheeling but for me I find my self spending most of it in the Mojave and Death Valley. I mention this because the winds that kick up at night. You will find that there is little to no protection to be found from the wind when your tent is on the roof of your truck. It could lead to some sleepless nights on the trail. Kevin "kellymo" another socal local, had one and sold it for that reason as i remember. You can always PM him and get his take on it.

Also check out sclr.org if your looking for a local club. Fun runs and good people.

Hope this helps,
Read
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  #76  
Old November 29th, 2005, 09:58 PM
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JAMES MARKS
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Read -

Good point about the wind in the desert... I didn't think of that...

I probably will join the SCLR club... I'm waiting for more trips to show up on the calendar...
looking forward to meeting all of you southern california rover folk...

-James
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  #77  
Old November 30th, 2005, 03:07 AM
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James,

Read was right. I had a very lux Hannibal tent that I ended up selling because it just was not practical for me. The wind was the main issue. You are much more exposed up on top of your truck than on the ground and one of the poles busted during a extremly windy night a few years ago leaving me with canvas pressed against my face . If you happen to have a small bladder sleeping on the roof can be a pain in the arse. I solved this with a pee bottle . Just dont confuse it with your water bottle in the middle of the night Another issue was the high center of gravity while wheeling. You can really feel it swaying. Wind drag is another problem which leads to even worse mpg than my truck already gets. Besides that the tent was great
When i am camping without my family I sleep in the back of my truck since I sold the Hannibal. But when my family goes camping we use a large dome tent that we bought at Costco. It works great but is a pain to set up. This summer we went up to Coyote Flats in the sierras. It is just above 10k feet and I had splitting headache from the altitude. Setting up that tent was miserable. I am considering buying a tent made by a company called www.airzonerecreation.com . The poles are inflatable and the whole tent sets up in seconds. The price is pretty steep $600 for the 6 person tent. They are very sturdy. I think this may be the eventual route I will take. Anyway that is my 2 cents on the rooftop tent.
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  #78  
Old November 30th, 2005, 09:49 AM
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I have 2 of the AirZone tents. I haven't camped in them yet but have spent some time inflating them and what-not in my garage and their system is pretty strong. I cant wait to try them out somewhere. Seem to be good tents from my playing with them. And yes, with a powertank, you can have your house up and ready in about 15 seconds. Haven't tried it yet with the included compressor they send.
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  #79  
Old November 30th, 2005, 11:02 AM
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JAMES MARKS
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Those air tents look great... perhaps I can forgo the roof tent... it certainly would save me a lot of money!
They really ought to add an inflatable floor to those tents so you don't need to pack an air mattress...
I have one of those North Face "Airfloor" tents that has a built in therma-rest style floor... I really love it because there are no edges or seams to the air mattress... you can't roll off of it.

-James
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  #80  
Old November 30th, 2005, 03:08 PM
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Trevor Tarr
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On a related note ... I've thought a lot about rooftop tents. To me, the single biggest drawback is that you've coupled your transportation to your campsite. Any time you want to take a drive away from camp, which for me is at least once a day, you have to empty and collapse the tent. That's just way too much work. Plus there's the high center-of-gravity driving issue, and the susceptibility to wind.

What I've finally settled on, which kills a lot of birds with one expensive stone, is a South African Defense Forces-style trailer, with its own roof-top tent (on telescoping spring-loaded struts). The tent is a 2.4-meter-square Howling Moon Tourer. See the first thumbnail below for a picture of the tent itself (but on a D110, not the trailer).

The trailer is being manufactured by Chris Cole's CampaUSA (http://www.campausa.com/) in Ohio, an offshoot of CampaATT in South Africa. Some of the pluses for me are:
  • I can drive away from my campsite whenever I want.
  • The tent is actually relatively easy to set up, and huge.
  • Compared to the Sankey ex-MOD trailer I've been using, the Campa is an entirely self-contained campsite.
  • Although I will still be more susceptible to wind than camping at ground level, the tent dosn't sit quite as high as the roof of my truck.

Although it's pricey, the trailer is incredible. It's all stainless, and includes 40 gallons of water storage, a shower, two sinks, an instant tankless water heater for showers and dish-washing, a self-contained fold-out kitchen unit, 2 11-pound propane tanks, 15 gallons of fuel storage, an Engel 45 refrigerator and Engel IB67 cooler, wheels and tires interchangeable with my truck's, brakes, a very burly offroad suspension, water- and dust-tight storage, two enclosed levels (with a ground-level skirt below the tent), lighting inside the tent and in all the storage bins ... the list goes on and on.

Keeping my fingers crossed this baby will be done before my next trip to the Saline Valley in December....

Follow-up Post:

Forgot to mention, the trailer is coming through, and with a lot of help from, Charles d'Andrade and Rover Accessories, CampaUSA's West Coast distributor. You should see them soon at http://www.roveraccessories.com/trailers.htm
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