Eezi-Awn Stealth...

#1
I just picked up a '17 4Runner Off Road and am working to get things set up for the summer.

I am looking at RTT's and am interested in the Eezi-Awn Stealth. I have been concerned about the interior length of the Hard Shell tents (I am 6'3"), but in speaking with Paul May of Equipt, he says he has more than enough room to stretch out, and he is slightly taller than I am. The Stealth is slightly narrower than some of the other offerings on the market, which works well with the 4Runner as it will only extend a small amount over edges.

Two concerns. It is heavy at 220#'s. I have no experience with RTT's and would like to hear from more experienced voices how much of an issue that weight might present in real world applications. Secondly, how much negative impact will an aluminum box covering the GPS antenna have on reception. Is there a workaround to the issue if it shuts the system down?

Thank you in advance for your feedback. I would be interested to hear your feedback on the Stealth in general and hear other options if better choices are on the market.
 
#2
The Stealth looks pretty cool to me but my wife and I like the 64" width of our JB XXL. We'd probably settle for something in the middle if the Eezi Awn were just a bit wider. That said, it's the best looking RTT on the market in my opinion. The weight is certainly a consideration. The JB is probably ~160 lbs and I have the Extreme version with roughly 60 lbs extra on the top storage area. I can definitely tell there's a lot of weight on the roof and am mindful of off-camber travel. I also have a heavy vehicle -- 7800 lb LC 200 when fully loaded. The additional roof weight hasn't held me back in any way. The 4Runner is significantly lighter so it'd be worth getting some feedback from folks with lighter vehicles.
 
#4
I was in one today at expo West. Pretty slick. I really like that ladder storage under the tent. I went to scope out the stealth and the Alu-cab gen3. Both have their respective pros/cons, both good solid tents.
 
#6
Hmm, a couple things, albeit nitpicking. Two latches vs four, a really smart use of the bungee to hold the fabric in when collapsing the tent, insulation top and bottom, and built in shoe (or other small item) holders built into the roof of the tent. If you didn't pack bulky clothes, I reckon you could put a few changes of clothes in the pockets on the roof. Also has a 12v plug already built into the tent. And the alu-cab is taller inside at the peak, I think a normal size guy could stand up in there is needed, although probably a little hunched. I do think the stealth is a little wider inside, and more room at the feet, if you have, like, size 15 feet.
Both offer three sided entry, a fly over the rear door, lower profile than a softshell tent, fast set up and tear down. Both cost about the same, they both are about 200lb. I don't know what the stealth is rated at for extra weight on top, the alu-cab can support an additional 200lb on the lid.
I think it's a close race, and comes down to personal preference. Me, I'd probably go alu-cab, since I have their awning and it's designed to work together. But that's just me.
 
#7
I appreciate the feedback. There are a couple things that are nice about the Alu-Cab...being able to keep the electronics charged is a nice touch.

I am needing every inch of space at 6'3"...and yes, a size 15 foot down there at the far end. So, the question for me is whether I can comfortably fit in a Hard Shell that fits on a 4Runner, or would I be better off with the additional length and width of something like the Eze-Awn Series 3.
 
#8
Can't help you there, they all have their perks. If it's just you, and you want fast and easy, I'd go with the stealth or gen 3. More people? Might be better off with a soft shell. All the hard shells cost more, the soft shells seem to have an advantage on size. Or you could go all out gonzo and get both...
 
#9
Adding a good hard (pun intended) look at the Stealth and Alu-Cab to my debate on a RTT. Have been looking at Maggiolina and Baroud primarily as well as the Tepui Autana. I'm leaning toward the hard shell for ease of set up and takedown at my age! I just sold my trailer with an Eezi-Awn Globetrotter. I'm going to miss that vestibule! Maggy has one but nobody with any real world experience with one.

That leads me to my question - anyone have a Stealth already and put it through it's paces yet? If so - FEEDBACK please. This thing is a full $1K more than a Maggy, so is it worth it. I like Eezi-Awn quality and I'd imagine this is built to those same standards I saw and loved in the Globetrotter.
 
#10
one thing to consider and make sure you are happy with, is how the tent is put away. I have a Baroud that allows for putting a spare wheel on top. On a long trip to Alaska with my 8 year old, I came to hate the RTT. Every morning it was an utter struggle to put the thing away. The struts - beefed up to allow extra weight on top - were near
impossible to compresss. The fabric would puff out and bind or get trapped and i would have to start again. With another adult it is easier but still by no means effortless. In the end I put my two man inflatable kayak on top of the tent to help compress the struts.

I loved it for how fast it was to deploy. But all that was lost each time it had to be put away. Many roof top tents get very little use and i think it is a combination of how hard they are to put away - remember pulling the tent down has to be done standing on the wheels, sliders, and whatever you have as a rear bumper - along with poorly designed entrance and exit, and a lack of accessories that help stow shoes.

I have been looking at the Stealth and the Expedition III from AluCab as replacements for the Baroud but both are longer than the Baroud by almost 12” and while i see some headway to solving the problems of taking them down. I can’t tell if they are truly easier and I didn’t make it to ExpoWest this year to try them.
 

rickc

Adventurer
#11
Okie Preacher: just watch out with your roof loading; I bring up this point many times because it is an important safety consideration and there are many on this forum that have a "yeah, whatever" attitude to roof loading. Lots of folk will state that their truck is just fine with lots of load up top and "don't have any problems" but this doesn't mean it's safe to do.

Most aftermarket, gutter mount, roof rack load bars are only rated to around 70lb dynamic, on pavement each so 140lb dynamic, pavement total. Divide by 2 for off road = 70lb dynamic; not very much. I believe that the stock 4Runner bars are good for 150lb dynamic; similar to above.

If you are looking at Eezi-Awn, you must be doing OK financially! You may want to consider a 4Runner Gobi Stealth rack, good for 300lb dynamic, 800lbs static; Gobi simply state "safe driving load" no mention of pavement or off road. This should would work well if you go ahead with a 220lb RTT. I can very definitely feel the difference when driving my truck with my 150lb RTT on top.

ucs308 makes really good points regarding putting the thing away; the top of a pop up is way up there (more so if your truck is lifted). The Eezi-Awn Stealth is really well-made but the grab handles are high when the tent is up and when pulling down, the side material has to be squeezed in around the other three sides, while pulling down against the lifting force of the struts; really a two person job because the side and front material must be pushed inside the box for it to close.

Eezi-Awn is one of the few non Chinese manufacturers (I think Baroud is still made in Portugal) but their tents are really expensive. I looked at many different options and chose a "conventional" ARB Simpson III soft flip over style. Takes about 10 minutes to put up with all the window springs and about 15 to minutes to take down depending on how the cover wants to cooperate but this is a one-man job. Also more overall room than a one-end lift up style and it has an extension covering the ladder which is really good to have when it rains. I can also remove it and put it back on top of my lifted truck by myself (if I have to). Carrying an extra 220lbs all the time, even when you are not using the tent, is a lot of load.
 
#12
I sincerely hope that more manufacturers of RTTs start using carbon instead of fiberglass or aluminum for the shell which would cut the weight in half. This will not only make the vehicle handle better but allow for easy installation and removal. As far as I know, Maggiolina is the only one that offers one in carbon, but it is absurdly expensive at $6k...but it is only 100 lbs.

http://www.autohomeus.com/roof-top-tents/maggiolina-carbon-fiber/

As for the Stealth vs. Alu-Cab, I'm sure you can't go wrong with either. Personally, I love the low-profile look of the Alu-Cab whereas the Stealth looks like a huge Thule or Yakima rooftop cargo box to me...the kind you typically see on a Subaru Outback.

Have you checked on availability? I know the Stealth has been out of stock for quite some time.
 
#13
one thing to consider and make sure you are happy with, is how the tent is put away. I have a Baroud that allows for putting a spare wheel on top. On a long trip to Alaska with my 8 year old, I came to hate the RTT. Every morning it was an utter struggle to put the thing away. The struts - beefed up to allow extra weight on top - were near
impossible to compresss. The fabric would puff out and bind or get trapped and i would have to start again. With another adult it is easier but still by no means effortless. In the end I put my two man inflatable kayak on top of the tent to help compress the struts.

I loved it for how fast it was to deploy. But all that was lost each time it had to be put away. Many roof top tents get very little use and i think it is a combination of how hard they are to put away - remember pulling the tent down has to be done standing on the wheels, sliders, and whatever you have as a rear bumper - along with poorly designed entrance and exit, and a lack of accessories that help stow shoes.

I have been looking at the Stealth and the Expedition III from AluCab as replacements for the Baroud but both are longer than the Baroud by almost 12” and while i see some headway to solving the problems of taking them down. I can’t tell if they are truly easier and I didn’t make it to ExpoWest this year to try them.
I was able to put away my JB Explorer solo, but it could take some effort if there was a lot of bedding inside. I found that it was helpful to hook, but not lock the front two latches, so that the tent remained in the wedge shape, and only then tackle the two rear (side, really) latches. It also really helps to get your body weight on top of the tent (if possible) to compress it so that you can lock the two rear/side latches.
 
#14
OP, I have a 5th Gen 4Runner and had the Eezi-Awn Stealth v1 on top and got rid of it within a few months. I simply think it's too big and heavy for the 4Runner. You definitely notice the change in ride quality and dynamics. It was top heavy and drove like a slug. Not to mention my MPG when from 17-18 to about 15.5. It's a nicely built RTT but I'm not sure 4Runner is meant to handle 220lbs on top constantly. I bought it used and flipped it for pretty much what I got it for.

A few things, Eezi-Awn is coming out with two new models. A fiberglass wedge called the Dart that weights 150lbs and the Blade which looks similar to the Stealth except it is a wedge design. From what I understand it should lighter than the Stealth but I'm not sure the exact weight. Both new models will feature a light inside and storage pockets. These are things the Stealth v1 lacked. They are coming out with the v2 Stealth that has these features though.

I'll reconsider getting a RTT at some point but I'd probably go with the Dart since it's the smallest and lightest of the group or the Series 3 1400 since that is only 125lbs. With a 4Runner and its anemic v6, keep your weight to a minimum.
 
#15
I recently led a group through southern Utah for 5 days and one gentleman in the group had a new Eezi-Awn Stealth. He picked it up just days before the trip so it was his first shakedown with it. I also am good friends with Paul at Equipt and have looked at the Stealth in his shop as well as on his 200 series LC. Here's my thoughts. It's a serious tent. The shell, for obvious reasons, is probably the most durable out there. It's a good shape with minimal wind resistance, albeit a couple weird things to the profile aesthetically. It's heavy. Often, one of the primary reasons for going with a hardshell over a softshell is to reduce weight. The Stealth is as heavy as most of the heavier softshell tents. Personally I don't think it's an ideal choice for smaller vehicles (a 4Runner would be the smallest I'd consider putting one on, but that's just me). Because of the weight, the vehicle suspension needs to be a serious consideration IMO. Not for handling the load, but for how it handles the dynamics of the vehicle while driving. If you just putter down dirt roads as a very leisurely pace, the suspension won't matter as much. If you like to travel at faster speeds, a good suspension will be a huge benefit with a tent like this to keep things feeling safe, and controlled. This goes for any heavier tent whether hard or soft shelled.

On our trip, the guy that had the Stealth seemed to be very pleased with it overall. As with most hardshells, the setup and take down was quick. I recall him commenting on the mattress being comfortable. We had very high winds our first night of camping and it was stable and relatively quiet from what he said. There is still some fabric flapping noise from the walls but it doesn't have the same noise level as a soft shell in high winds. We also had rain during our trip. The Stealth was the only hard shell in our group and we had another soft shell Eezi-Awn, several Tepui soft shell tents and one CVT. None experienced any leaks.

I think if you're looking at a hardshell and want to purchase one that will last a lifetime, the Stealth is a great option. It's expensive, but when you consider how long it will last that cost becomes very reasonable IMO. If you've ever worked with Paul at Equipt you know his care for customers is as good as you'll find anywhere. It should be comforting to know that should any issues arise that he'll have your back to get it sorted quickly and effectively.

As many of you probably know, I sell Tepui Tents, because I think they have features and quality that make them one of the best tents and best value on the market, even though they aren't the cheapest. But I do like to keep my eyes on other brands and learn about them because I genuinely find it interesting and I like to see how different brands address different issues in their design. The Stealth is definitely a top tier hardshell with some neat features. To me the only downside is the cost and the weight, but those are factors that can be mitigated with proper vehicle mods and time.

Here's few pics of the Stealth from our trip.
IMG_0391 by Adam Tolman, on Flickr

IMG_0493 by Adam Tolman, on Flickr

IMG_0551 by Adam Tolman, on Flickr

IMG_0561 by Adam Tolman, on Flickr

IMG_0603 by Adam Tolman, on Flickr
 
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