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Does anyone have/had a tent trailer? Opinions and advice please


shane96ranger

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I'm gearing up to be in the market for a tent trailer in the next couple months (or now if I find a deal). My Mustang takes the priority parking spot, so I don't have any room for a larger trailer. So my option becomes a tent trailer. I've never owned one, never had much experience with them, so I'm hoping for a little feedback.

I've been looking in the classifieds and I didn't realize how many different companies make these things. Is there a preferred brand, model, year, etc? What options should I look for? I really would like to keep it under $2000, and I've seen several that look decent in the $1500-$2000 range.
 


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one of my buddies took a small trailer and added an upper deck with roof top tent.

i think the expo guy is building an overland trailer with RTT.. the thread is on here somewhere.

If you get a used 4x8 trailer, you can always add sides, upper deck, and RTT.
 

shane96ranger

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Those are cool, but not really something I want to take my kids camping with. I was hoping more for some members that have had tent trailers, etc. I've seen quite a few good ones in the past day or two. Everyone around here keeps telling me to wait for camping season to be over, and I'll get it for less. :shrug:
 

pillen140

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If you get one, try your hardest to find one with the spring loaded roof supports! So much easier and durable! The cable and winch way to lift the roof sucks! And always breaks at the worst time. Also if getting used, make sure the canvas is good... new they run $700 plus. If it has a stove, make sure the gas doesn't leak, or just don't use it. I just bought a junk one with no canvas for $150. I figure if I buy canvas for it and fix the cables, its worth it... if I get lazy, its turning into a utility trailer.
 

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Just helped someone put one up for the first time. IMO it was way to much work for a fancy tent on wheels. A small covered trailer seems like a better option.

Sent from the road while ignoring traffic
 

shane96ranger

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If you get one, try your hardest to find one with the spring loaded roof supports! So much easier and durable! The cable and winch way to lift the roof sucks! And always breaks at the worst time. Also if getting used, make sure the canvas is good... new they run $700 plus. If it has a stove, make sure the gas doesn't leak, or just don't use it. I just bought a junk one with no canvas for $150. I figure if I buy canvas for it and fix the cables, its worth it... if I get lazy, its turning into a utility trailer.
I've seen a couple that say they have some "small patches". I haven't seen any that say they are spring loaded roofs, I'll have to pay more attention. This might be a dumb question, but is it possible to break while it's up - and have it collapse? I also have seen a couple that say they have broken cables - and they can be had for under a grand. I don't know if that means a cable is expensive, or a PITA to fix though....

Very nice! I didn't realize such a forum existed. Thanks!
 

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shane96ranger

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pillen140

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That one is nice! A wouldn't worry about a small patch, just test it for a water leak. Watch for mildew or fraying of the canvas that's not fixable. The cables id imagine are pretty cheap themselves, its the pain in the ass work. I think there is a safety pin to keep the roof from collapsing on ya, lol. The spring armed ones are easy to spot because the arm things are visible from the outside, and they fold into a "v" shape on the outside of the trailer when the roof is down.
 

pillen140

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Just helped someone put one up for the first time. IMO it was way to much work for a fancy tent on wheels. A small covered trailer seems like a better option.

Sent from the road while ignoring traffic
I love tent camping, but when its more that a day or two with a dog or kids and a ton of crap its worth it, a little safer too. Its still pretty close to tent camping cause you're still roughing it, but just a little better.... especially in bad weather.
 

shane96ranger

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Its still pretty close to tent camping cause you're still roughing it, but just a little better.... especially in bad weather.
And this is exactly why I want one, along with the weight difference. My buddy has a regular trailer (about 25 feet long) and his F150 struggles a bit with it with a 5.4 3V. I don't want to overwork my 4.6 in mine, LOL.
 

pillen140

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Even while towing mine, its not that noticable.... and that's with a 3.0L and 35s lol. I just moved it in the backyard by hand too. That's a huge plus, because I hate hooking up just to move it 25ft to mmow under it.
 


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