Date registered: Nov 2002
Vehicle: 1980 LWB 280GE
Location: Bailey, CO, USA
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
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I know he's already thought of it but....
Make sure the motor is a through-shaft design, or better yet, an offset gear reduction design with over-running clutch, so that the hex shaft is still available for use when needed.
Just after I got the top-tent, a buddy of mine returned from a week-long jaunt with his pickup-bed camper. It's the kind with a roof that lowers a bit, and the roof is raised by an electric motor. He said he pulled into camp one night to find the thing only went up half way and stopped. The connection of the camper battery to the truck's electricals was loose and the camper battery had not been charging. This fellow (who's name also happens to be Barry, incidentally!) was in a position to simply pick up and move the truck to a camp site that had a mains hookup so his camper's battery charger could give enough power to finish raising the roof. (he didn't know where the battery problem lay at that point)
But the bottom line is, when I heard the story, my first thought was, "Man, I'm glad the TopTent doesn't depend on electricity."
There are two other things about the raising mechanism that bear exposure here.
1- NO cables. It's based on mechanical linkage and dry-run bushings on a threaded screw. Maybe it's unfounded, but I hate cables after one failed in our pop-up camper as a kid.
2- The crank for the lifitng mechanism mates to a standard hex shaft. If I forget/loose/break the lifting handle, I just pull a ratchet/socket/wrench/etc out of my tool kit and raise the tent.
There really is no price you can place on having something designed and built by the rare combination of someone who knows what's right, and cares enough to deliver it to the greatest extent of his ability to do so.
IMHO, the above statement goes for both Michel and Barry.
PS - Brent, you ever figure out the house bat problem on the motor home?