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I only recently learned the the acronym meant, and have never used one. Does anyone have any thoughts about them?
 

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There's a guy at my work that has one on a dodge rebel. Looks pretty awesome. Be cool to have but way to much money for me. I have 2 tents that work well enough for me. If I want to sleep in the truck i'd just get a blow up mattress for the bed lol.
 

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It comes down to what do you do with your truck and what kind of camping you do. If the places you go have good ground for a tent, and you operate from a 'basecamp' then they're not needed. but if you are always on the move, on rough ground they have a use.
There's alot of overland channels on YT that show the upsides of them.
 

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I only recently learned the the acronym meant, and have never used one. Does anyone have any thoughts about them?
Their optimal use would be for someone who is traveling long days, spending quick nights somewhere and then who wants to quickly pack up and be on the road. They generally come with a decently comfortable mattress, you can usually leave your sleep gear in them ready to go, and they are forgiving of terrain if you are parked somewhere muddy, rocky, snowy, exc. Additionally in an area like Africa or Australia you could argue you are safer from animals and creepy crawlies.

downside is they’re expensive as hell, not often that fast to set up or pack down, very limited in room, have to pack them up if you want to go explore with your vehicle from camp, and make your vehicle quite top heavy.

they have become fairly popular in the US as more of a look cool item. Most of the folks using them here would find a basic ground tent a much better option IMO.
 
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They're the latest gimicky thing from the Overland crowd which in itself is one big gimmick. Most people have a bad enough time putting a tent up on the ground,now they're going to try 6 ft in the air with no room to work around.....lol sounds like an emergency room visit.Or try getting up to piss at 2am,drunk when it snowing or icy, another ER visit. Stupidest idea in a decade or two.
 

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Stupidest idea in a decade or two.
Lol, I wouldn't go that far. I think ground tents with good mattresses are better suited for most people. Investing in an Exed Megamat and a decent ground tent will have similar size and comfort to most RTTs, and it will weigh less.

I've done extensive research on RTTs and used multiple styles. The kind that flip open have some benefits over ground tents. You can leave sleeping gear inside (mattress and bedding), the setup time can be faster than a similar sized ground tent (I'm thinking 8-person Coleman or something like that), you are off the ground (if that matters to you), and if you can level out your rig then you're guaranteed a level sleeping spot. My first tent was a flip open kind, and I wouldn't buy another. Generally they are much heavier than a ground tent, take as much or more time to set up for the size tent I actually need, and getting them on and off the vehicle (plus storing) can be a hassle.

A hard shell has more benefits over a ground tent. Opening is generally faster, because they are assisted by gas struts or electronics. You can leave sleeping gear inside. You have a hard roof over your head, which can help with noise or extreme conditions. Some of these can be built lighter and low profile, which helps with vehicle dynamics (although a ground tent and good sleeping pad still wins in the weight category). Some can also be used as roof racks.

I started building a wedge style, hard shell RTT. I made the frame, base, and top out of wood. I still need to sew the fabric walls for it. It takes about 30 seconds to set up, and I'm guessing will take 90 seconds to close when I get fabric on it. If I decide this one works well enough, I might make one out of aluminum and composites. There is a good DIY RTT comunity on Facebook, and most people have less invested in building one than a quality ground tent.

Is an RTT the be-all end-all in camping? No. Do they have some benefits over a ground tent? Yes. Is it worth it? That's up to you. They are becoming a fancy "fashion" accessory within the overlanding crowd, but there's no harm in that.

If you want to look at some cool stuff, check out the following:
1) GoFast Camper
2) RipCord's DIY Wedge Camper
3) RoofNest (Sparrow is my favorite out of their offerings)
4) FreeSpirit (Odyssey is my favorite out of their offerings)
5) Smittybilt (the budget option)

The old tent:
318941

318942


The new tent:
318939

318940
 

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I've used mine quite a bit. Cheap, china no brand one i bought as part of a group buy on the Tacoma forums 2 years or so ago.
The thing i probably like the most is that i can pack all the sleeping stuff inside it (pillows, blankets, clothes, whatever) and its up there, out of the way, and nice and clean/dry after a day on the road or trail. The bed itself is comfy, plenty of room for 2 people or me and the dog. Pops up in seconds, packs away in about 5 minutes.
I put the same tent on the frontier and my other car for various trips. No worries about sleeping on lumpy ground, no air mattress to blow up, etc.





 

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How comfy is it at 1am when a huge summer lightning storm pops up..I bet you crap your panties every time a clap of lightning strikes nearby.......lol
 

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How comfy is it at 1am when a huge summer lightning storm pops up..I bet you crap your panties every time a clap of lightning strikes nearby.
Good point, maybe I'll put a lightning rod on it :ROFLMAO:. Honestly that's not something I ever had to worry about in California. I got snowed on and rained on, but thunder/lightning storms don't happen very often there.

We get a lot of hail in South Dakota. For that, I'd rather have a hard roof over my head than 20 denier tent fabric. If lightning strikes that close to me, the only place I'm going to feel safe is inside the truck (a natural Faraday cage).
 

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You can camp anywhere you want....dont have to look for soft level ground like with a regular ground tent.
You just flip the RTT open like a giant suit case , there is a foam mattress already in the RTT and you can keep your sleeping bag and pillow in the RTT as well.
Like I said you just flip it open and climb up the ladder and crawl in ...sleep like a baby.







 

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Discussion Starter #15
You can camp anywhere you want....dont have to look for soft level ground like with a regular ground tent.
You just flip the RTT open like a giant suit case , there is a foam mattress already in the RTT and you can keep your sleeping bag and pillow in the RTT as well.
Like I said you just flip it open and climb up the ladder and crawl in ...sleep like a baby.







@MNCarl

That hammock is a nice touch!


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But it's set-up way to low, you need to put it up high enough so you need a ladder to get up to it, that'll make it much better..........
 

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But it's set-up way to low, you need to put it up high enough so you need a ladder to get up to it, that'll make it much better..........
Dude, why are all your replies so full of teenage angst? 🤣
 

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I don't like them personally, for a few reasons.

They are generally pretty heavy.
They place all that weight at the worst possible spot for vehicle stability.
If I have to piss in the middle of the night I don't want to have to fumble with a ladder and lantern.
Carrying the dog up and down is a pain.
They generally don't install and uninstall easy.
Despite hard shells being streamlined, they hurt fuel economy. Something the frontier doesn't need help with.
Sometimes I go camping with other people, not driving my truck and can't take that tent with me.

They work great for some folks, just not for me. If I was going to get one, I'd be looking at James Baroud or something along those lines.
 

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All the above plus they are rarely larger than 4'x6' which is tiny even for just one small person, never seen one that is a decent size ie. 8'x12' or larger.
 
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