NAS LR3 build with an overseas twist

sunrisehiker

Adventurer
Ray,
would you be able to elaborate on real life experience on awning a hard-shell RTT and observations, conclusions with driving highway and off road with it mounted on LR3 ?
- how is the overall additional noise on top of Prospeed roof rack?
-are two XRS Prospeed round bars sufficient for mounting that particular RTT on rack ? Was fitment tight due to low profile and nature of that roof rack ?
- Fuel economy down a lot ?
Int is hard to find any reviews on line regarding LR3 and hardshell tent use.
I am planning a road trip in May from NJ to Yellowstone area as well as come Utah adventure and maybe CO exploration depending on the road closures due to unusually large snow amount this year.Really wanted to rent a hardshell RTT but there is virtually no rental places in East Coast and purchase option is not in cards right now as I just had to surgeries in the last four months and been out of work due to those factors. There is one place that I can rent from in southern Utah but kind of out of our way and we would have to return to the same location limiting ourselves with camping options especially on the way back to NJ.
There was one more option, RTT from Costco, but it is unavailable now, well see if it pups back on the website.Some Chinese copy that weights 0ver 153 lbs.
The good thing is we could always return it if unhappy.
I don't really know anything about camping with hardshell RTT as I always slept in ground tents ad shelters. Thank you in advance ! Cheers
 

Ray_G

Explorer
Answers to the questions from Sunrisehiker-
Would you be able to elaborate on real life experience on awning a hard-shell RTT and observations, conclusions with driving highway and off road with it mounted on LR3 ?
- how is the overall additional noise on top of Prospeed roof rack?
There is a little more noise. The prospeed essentially has no significant noise, so adding the RTT-even as sleek as it is, increased that negligible noise somewhat. It is far from adversarial, and in truth below 70 it is unnoticeable.
-are two XRS Prospeed round bars sufficient for mounting that particular RTT on rack ? Was fitment tight due to low profile and nature of that roof rack ?
Yes, two bars is more than enough. Fitment is pretty tight, particularly since I previously had the XRS mounts raised slightly to sit on top of the flooring. Over the winter I cut away enough flooring to have the mounts now flush with the rack again-making for a very tight fit between the rack and tent (less than 1" of clearance-which cuts down on the aforementioned wind noise). No real issue with install-just use an extension on a ratchet or a T handle allen.
- Fuel economy down a lot ?
No, not really. Perhaps .5mpg down, maybe 1mpg if I'm really running it hard. On the whole the sleek nature of the tent & rack, the tight clearance between the two, and such all make for as good of aerodynamics as you are going to get with the truck.

Int is hard to find any reviews on line regarding LR3 and hardshell tent use.
I am planning a road trip in May from NJ to Yellowstone area as well as come Utah adventure and maybe CO exploration depending on the road closures due to unusually large snow amount this year.Really wanted to rent a hardshell RTT but there is virtually no rental places in East Coast and purchase option is not in cards right now as I just had to surgeries in the last four months and been out of work due to those factors. There is one place that I can rent from in southern Utah but kind of out of our way and we would have to return to the same location limiting ourselves with camping options especially on the way back to NJ.
There was one more option, RTT from Costco, but it is unavailable now, well see if it pups back on the website.Some Chinese copy that weights 0ver 153 lbs.
The good thing is we could always return it if unhappy.
I don't really know anything about camping with hardshell RTT as I always slept in ground tents ad shelters. Thank you in advance ! Cheers
So this is the hardest facet to address. Our choice of a hardshell RTT has been covered on these pages as it came into being but basically boils down to being tired of being on the ground, wanting to optimize for quick setup/teardown, and having the means to throw $$$ at the problem. We were fortunate in being able to look at a JB and a Roofnest before deciding that the autohome would work best for our application.

By and large I strongly feel that hardshell is > softshell. Those have similar benefits to hardshell in terms of having the tent mounted, off the ground, but setup is longer and much more fiddly (as is tear down) from everyone I've talked to our soon. That is a relative statement though, many would say once you have a system it isn't bad and everyone's threshold for what is a PITA vs tolerable is different.

Personally I think the hardshell fits better for the LR3 in terms of looks-but that is very much a subjective opinion.

Depending on budget and long term intentions were I you I'd consider roofnest in the hardshell lineup. It is lower quality than Autohome or JB, but they have great customer service and some interesting features. If you take care of it, it would likely prove up to the task (when we looked at one the gracious and honest owner noted 'it likely isn't the RTT you'd own for the rest of your life, but it fits well with a budget to get out and camp.' For us we wanted something we'd have for the rest of our lives...thus we decided the investment of more $ was worthwhile.)

Hope that helps.
r-
Ray
 

sunrisehiker

Adventurer
Thanks Ray!
You have been very helpful with answering my questions . Cheers ! Hopefully I see you on 2019 VOR ?
I remembered that someone mentioned that Prospeed abs modular floor warped. I can confirm that as well. I have three sets to cover entire roof and boy they warped ...It is a nice platform to stand on, but due to their design, it is very easy to end up with a gallon of water inside the cabin if one rolls down the window after a rain.ask me hoe I know that...even on next day those slots will hold water and that turns to ice in winter with potential projectiles hitting others driving behind you..
 
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Ray_G

Explorer
I hope to get to VOR but am reluctant to speak to soon since work ALWAYs conspires against me for that event for some reason-thus we've got it on the master calendar and are crossing our fingers.

I'm surprised the flooring warped that much-that's unfortunate. I'm glad that I just went chicken coop route b/c of my Disco1 roots. It's held up well, and takes to modifying easy (it looks like it has been in a fight with a sawzall at this point b/c of all the mods, but is still functional and now hidden by the RTT.
 
Great response @Ray_G I have to go along with you on the hardshell>soft-shell. Yes, any process can make it easier on the individual, but the process is still the same when it comes to usability. I'm putting the sleeping kit inside for the exact reason that I want quick and easy mobility for trail events over the comfort of the RTT and weight on the roof; I love the ARB Simpson III RTT but the process is not even in the ballpark compared to set-up and breakdown ease. Longer trips that I plan to be out and about on the dirt roads I will carry along the RTT as I expect to be in one spot more than moving around. Given what I know now, the hardshell RTT is the best all around and the only tradeoff is the weight on the roof which is unavoidable in any RTT configuration. Ultimately, I believe people need to understand they really should only be comparing soft-shell RTT with soft-shell and hard with hard as they are really two different categories.

I believe you have one of the best overall longterm reviews of life on the RTT purchase; you give us the good and the bad with little no no bias and that is helpful for someone looking to make a high-end purchase of a hardshell RTT.

If I had to do it again, hardshell and high quality one time purchase with great support plan would be the purchase for me.........most likely an Autohome or JB hardshell RTT and never look back.
 

Ray_G

Explorer
In an effort to continue earning the kind words about being forthright about the RTT and other things....shots from this weekend. We are looking at 3 straight weekends of camping, with a break, and then several more on the agenda as the summer unfolds so the tent will be earning her keep.

This weekend was up to WV to assist with trail building/renewal, others were coming who we gave the bed space 'in the inn' to since we have a bed on the roof. That enabled shots like this from our Fri pm setup.


Of course the peeps on FB called me out bc, let's be honest, it was outside of the park owner's house...


I have no shame with that given the aforementioned bye on the guest beds. First night nothing to report, then we spent a day clearing trails, making new ones, and repairing the decade old log bridge that an I4WTDA instructor's troopie broke. Then it started raining.




Thus Sat night was spent in the tent in driving rain.

Tent was flawless. We found that entry/exit from the back is better than the side as it mitigates any water coming in. Temps were in the low 50's outside the tent, and with two of us inside the interior temp was about 60.

Maxtrax mounts help with the entry/egress a great deal.


More to follow, next weekend is a small Rover event and then Memorial Day comes.


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Ray_G

Explorer
2nd of 3 straight weekends we'll spend in the truck down. Nothing significant to report with the truck other than she works. In this case I started my Fri am in Va Beach.
517299
When done with work down there, drove back to Northern VA, linked up with the wife, drove to WV to be there for the next morning's start time. Arrived circa 1030, tent was up and we were in it in minutes. Ended up setting up in the shade of the park's office, both to minimize sunlight first thing in the am and be ready for the LR MD folks that were coming up.
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As is often the case at Twin Mountain, it seems dry but the trails down in the draws retain a lot of water. So the easy trail ended up being less than easy. First a Dii lost traction and almost ended up in the stream, and was so out of position that we ended up winching her over the log bridge and up/out backwards. The LR4 that followed her got the right line, but with the spirited driving managed to tear a hole in his sidewall. So as he got to the bridge his front tire was totally flat and required changing....
517301
Plenty of other action to get the group out took place. As the above shot notes, maxtrax/action trax were used extensively along with the winches. I was in Coyote for all of this and will post some more pics there since this is about the D3 for the most part. That said, never get shots of myself so this cracked me (screenshot from a video), coil sprung 3 in the background came across with no issues...and I got a good workout throughout the day hauling muddy MTs.
517302
Eventually we got everyone out. As we made dinner that night I got a good shot of the back of the truck being used for pretty much everything: prepping kabob, eating hummus, pouring wine, and airing up someone elses tires. All at the same time.
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Final shot of two of the three coil sprung trucks on site this weekend together.
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Love the sticker, may have to get it in dark gray/black for my truck.
And finally my two girls together.
517305
A few days of 'down time' doing the regular job, and then memorial day will make the 3rd weekend out in the tent in a row.
r-
Ray
 

Ray_G

Explorer
oof - not all EAS is hopeless/unprepared.

Glad to see you're getting you're still getting your PT in.
Ha, in fairness the EAS trucks running the trails did fine as it relates to their suspension. I just love stirring the pot b/c of all of the butthurt about coils on FB.

You need to get up to the mountain!
 

Jwestpro

Explorer
Bit perplexed on this. I guess I could carry them for all the folks running EAS. I mean we end up using my recovery gear all the time may as well carry spares for them too!


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Hey, LOL, I got you confused with a PM sent to me asking about where I found metal air line splicers. His forum name is NASDIESEL which I just connected to the NAS forcthis thread ;) was using my phone so didntvsee clearly.
Anyway, you should have these tucked away in the LR3 anyway ;)
 

Ian_Barry

Observer
Ha, in fairness the EAS trucks running the trails did fine as it relates to their suspension. I just love stirring the pot b/c of all of the butthurt about coils on FB.
I can't bring myself to get of FB anymore, for any reason. That said, I do miss the EAS/coils food fight.
You need to get up to the mountain!
Desperately - I ended up/had to move to NYC so it's a little bit different for me to make the trip. I have a bikepacking trip in the area next month - if the timing works out maybe I can stop by to help with some of the trail work. If it doesn't I will make a more dedicated trip - maybe it could not rain on me one time.
 

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Ray_G

Explorer
3rd weekend in the tent in a row. Did some roaming around WV on dirt too.

Played with the starter drone a little.



Weekend playmates.

Out exploring the forest service roads.

Inevitably I got few shots despite hours of driving

There has to be a story to this.

Fantastic food with friends and family


This pretty much sums it up.





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