Viewing 20 posts - 41 through 60 (of 60 total)
  • Are campervan pop tops cold?
  • Premier Icon spooky_b329
    Full Member

    Need to think outside the box, lose all the standard cubby holes and go custom. Do you need a bench seat… if you are happy sitting in the front swivels that gives you various options…higher bed completely suspended from the walls means you could store bikes in a bike bag under the bed accessible from the rear, along with boxes of shoes, helmets, food from the front. Forward
    Section of bed could fold up to increase standing/living room, i considered have the forward section of the bed fold down over a low transverse worktop/hob/fridge but discounted it in my larger van. Lose the 60l clothes bags and design in a few drawers as it’s two less big bulky items to move around.
    With this semi fixed style bed you don’t need to store the bedding, throw a blanket over and you can heap your coats, towels and other junk on the bed in the daytime and lob it in the front footwells at night which is dead space when seats are swivelled.
    The rear vertical garage is a cool idea but not sure it’s the best use of space if you don’t need a rock n roll setup.

    Premier Icon Andy
    Free Member

    phil5556

    Member
    Don’t think tow bar racks are any more secure than the swanky VW things

    It’s lower down so easier to run a chain to somewhere solid and can tilt out the way to get in to the boot. I use a big chain around the tow bar, but yes the locks on the rack itself I wouldn’t trust.

    Agreed. When I do leave my bike outside overnight I use a massive thick chain through one of the alloy wheels and a couple of D Locks for good measure (all live in the van permanently). Survived an incident in Edale a few years ago when 6 club mates had their bikes stolen whilst they were sleeping.

    Like the Amdro stuff, show stopper for me though is the furniture in front of swivelly front seats which are essential as they open up the front of the van as living space when parked.

    LOLs at get a bigger van / Trailer. Missing the point of small vehicle camping and compromises needed v benefit of smaller vehicle. My T5 is my 5th Campervan in 25 years, last one was a biggun. Pleased with what have now. Think the OPs thoughts of put roof in and then use vehicle for a bit of time whilst work out how to do downstairs is spot on. Think I would have benefited from that approach.

    Premier Icon ElShalimo
    Free Member

    Bikes outside with a set of good locks/chains and a waterproof cover is probably the sensible option.

    The T6 is not that big inside, even a LWB version.

    Premier Icon trail_rat
    Free Member

    Strapping (good)bikes on outside on view defeats the purpose of a camper for me.i Would not relax when I leftthe van anywhere/slept on while on my trips.

    Solution if trailer/bigger van makes you LOL Leave bikes at home.

    But inside plus 2 sleeping even if you sleep in the roof is just going to get on your nerves. It can be done….but so can sleeping in a hatch back. It’s nae fun.

    Premier Icon phil5556
    Full Member

    Like the Amdro stuff, show stopper for me though is the furniture in front of swivelly front seats which are essential as they open up the front of the van as living space when parked

    That was one of the plus points for us, seating in the back without having to spin the seats, which are a bit of a pain and not so good for the quick stops where you want to just jump in the back. Like everything depends what you’re after etc.

    Exploria bed could be an option (other similar ones available too). https://exploria-online.co.uk/kombi-beds.aspx

    We’ve thought about putting a pop top on ours but are definitely more likely to go down the bigger van route. The T5 with a rack on the back is pretty much the same length as a L3 Ducato, I keep meaning to measure it.

    Premier Icon Andy
    Free Member

    trail_rat

    Member
    Strapping (good)bikes on outside on view defeats the purpose of a camper for me.i Would not relax when I leftthe van anywhere/slept on while on my trips.

    Solution if trailer/bigger van makes you LOL Leave bikes at home.

    I can sleep in my double bed inside my little T5 van with 2 bikes inside if I need to. Admittedly its tight and would be much easier in a LWB T5. I only put the bikes outside if on a campsite and feel secure. As said done the big van. Small van as only vehicle suits me much better. No right answer here, just different choices and compromises. Its good to give the OP different options to think about.

    That was one of the plus points for us, seating in the back without having to spin the seats, which are a bit of a pain and not so good for the quick stops where you want to just jump in the back. Like everything depends what you’re after etc.

    Takes 30 seconds, if that, to spin each front seat. Always do it if stopping for lunch.

    Premier Icon jackal
    Free Member

    A pop top will transform the van, not just the sleeping aspect but the being able to stand up etc.
    Will definitely need a thermal cover for winter though, I had a pucer screens one on the T4 as per a previous post.
    Now on a lwb T6, gone for a Reimo roof this time, excellent bit of kit. The bed is a proper sprung one and being of a mesh construction enables the heat from below to rise up into the roof area.
    Saying all that I’d of gone genuine California roof if I had a swb.
    Seating wise I’ve gone for the Cali seat/bed on rails. The rail system is a must to make the vehicle useable as a daily/camper/load lugger/child carrier. Cost wise The fixed rock and roll style beds limit the use of the space a bit too much. Cost wise if you diy it, prob not that much more than a fully spec’d up RIB bed.
    If you’re anywhere near Derbyshire I can recommend someone to do the California roof/bed work.

    Premier Icon kynasf
    Free Member

    Just back from Forest of Dean. Kids were in the roof as normal, but no complaints of being cold. This will probably be it though until spring, so if you were planning on winter use, some additional insulation would be a good idea. Good sleeping bags and a diesel heater work great for the most part.

    Premier Icon ahsat
    Full Member

    Thanks all for the comments and some alternative ideas. It’s not put us off the idea, but given us some extra things to think about.

    Premier Icon wobbliscott
    Full Member

    Agreed. When I do leave my bike outside overnight I use a massive thick chain through one of the alloy wheels and a couple of D Locks for good measure

    Pointless if they get through the chain. I use a massive chain on my high level VW rack which is firmly attached to the van as well as D locks just like you – so all bikes attached to the rack and bikes also attached to each other so if they want to nick one bike they have to nick them all – if anyone was to nick my bikes they’d have to break through the chain in the same way as yours, then through a D lock or two. the fact yours is attached to your alloy wheel makes no difference. Though nowt wrong with tow bar racks, I just prefer the high level VW rack which means I can use a Thule BackUp for additional storage for bigger trips which is super handy.

    things I’d change in my van: –
    get rid of the bench seat up front – not that useful and a PITA. to swivel round and not actually that comfy to sit in. It doesn’t recline or slide forward or backwards. Though does have handy storage underneath.

    I’d also want my rear seat/bed to be on rails so can slide forward which is a far more convenient configuration when just using it to ferry people around.

    I’d want an internal grey water tank as my sink just drains to outside. Fine if you’re on a campsite but need to carry a catch canister and just another PITA.

    Have a pop top that rises higher at the back – mine basically hinges from the rear and only raises vertically a couple of inches meaning when you’re lying on your back you’re feet foul with the top. Some other pop tops rise vertically much higher.

    Premier Icon Andy
    Free Member

    Pointless if they get through the chain.

    Nope. As D locked to wheel as well as chained so would need to cut both, or cut frame twice.

    get rid of the bench seat up front

    I did that for those exact reasons. Also means you can walk from front to rear without leaving van.

    Have a pop top that rises higher at the back

    Thats a really good thought!

    Premier Icon teanosugar
    Free Member

    Have you seen the Tent Box roof tents, I’m considering one for my T6.

    Premier Icon trail_rat
    Free Member

    Pointless if they get through the chain.

    Nope. As D locked to wheel as well as chained so would need to cut both, or cut frame twice.

    By the time you’ve rearranged all your stuff to get out the door the battery angle grinder with 1mm disk has made short work of both and they are gone.

    Premier Icon Andy
    Free Member

    Let it go Trail_rat 😁. Five years ago you were saying all you need is a Berlingo to sleep in. Sorry mate I cant keep up with what is the latest gospel that everyone HAS to agree with? Tiny or massive? Like I said no wrong answer here. Just different compromises. 25 years and 5 vans means what I have works for me. I am sure that will change in time.

    Tbh I do sleep incredibly deeply and have been known to sleep through shit loads, I did wake up during the Edale incident and suspect the shock of me stopping snoring prompted the scrotes to leg it 😂 I think they just pulled at the bike to see how it was attached. If they knew how heavy I sleep they could have carried on as I would have slept through it.

    Premier Icon csb
    Full Member

    Having slept in vans and tents in all seasons over the years i can only imagine a single skin roof top tent being unbeleivably cold in winter! Don’t underestimate the benefit of the inner tent in a real tent.

    Premier Icon NZCol
    Free Member

    I’ve built an air pipe using a dryer duct and some moulded plastic to duct the air from the b pillar. Makes a massive difference

    Premier Icon scotroutes
    Full Member

    We have a pop-top on our van, no bed in it though. We’ve slept in the van on some proper cold nights – sub-zero – without any problems. It helps that we can warm the space up with a diesel heater before going to bed but we don’t run it overnight.

    Premier Icon thegeneralist
    Free Member

    I don’t get this worry about sleeping in the cold…. Being wet is miserable, getting eaten by midgies is miserable, being cold whilst sleeping…..?

    Just get a decent sleeping bag.

    Had the kids happily sleep in the roof at a measured minus nine external, minus five internal in Cairngorm car park years ago when they were five/seven years old. I was a bit worried TBH but they were fine. No problems at all on the roof. Washing, toilet, removing wet kit etc were all much more tricky, but none of those get solved by insulating a pop top.

    Premier Icon thegeneralist
    Free Member

    Clearly that should read “in the roof”, but I think I’ll leave it like that😄

    Premier Icon epicyclo
    Full Member

    When it comes to stowing bikes, I’m surprised more people aren’t using QR pedals.

    Remove pedals, turn the bars, and a bike can be made quite thin.

    I’ve been using them on bikes I have to cram into tight spots for years, and they have been trouble-free. I’m not sure they would handle DH, but general XC doesn’t seem to faze them.

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