New RKS Off-Road Trailer That You Might Like!

vintageracer

To Infinity and Beyond!
Here is a review of a new RKS Offroad trailer that I received from another site that provides daily emails to me about the RV Travel world.

Interesting concept that may interest some of our fellow travelers!

Yes it's pricey. What isn't these days!


 

ScottReb

Adventurer
The price pretty reasonable when you look at cost of materials alone. The panels and the aluminum probably account for 30%+. Lithium batteries, full solar, inverters etc. Probably over $30k in material costs alone. Plus these small builders don't get great volume discounts.
 

altonsavagenye

New member
A quick note; the 5,200 pound weight is the Timbren load capability, not the trailer weight. Dry weight is supposed to be around ~2,500 pounds.

There's no question this thing is not cheap. That said, I'm pretty confident you can't find anything even remotely similar outside of this 40-50K range. I spent a lot of time looking for something in that 20-30K range that I was comfortable would last long enough to justify the investment, and I couldn't find it. The primary comparable aluminum/honeycomb competitors that I found were built by Overkill Campers (30K base price, ~45-50K similarly optioned), Boreas (48K, not beginning production until next fall), and Off-Grid (28K base, ~40K similarly optioned, but a lot smaller trailer). There are definitely other companies building quality off-road trailers too, but I don't think anything that similar to the RKS exists under 35K, realistically.

I'm the customer mentioned in the article that OP linked. When talking with Travis and Elisabeth about what I was looking for in a trailer, I suggested a few modifications of their interior to allow for an office space, since the way to get my wife on board with this kind of purchase was to stop renting an office for my remote job and reallocate that expense to something that could serve multiple functions. They've been unbelievably great to work with during the process, despite COVID and the wildfires throwing them some curveballs they couldn't have predicted when they launched.

We're on track to pick up our Purpose trailer in the next month or two, and ours will be the inaugural unit to leave the facility (they're building a demo trailer concurrently with ours, so it isn't technically the first one...). If people are interested in updates as we take delivery and learn the specific pros and cons associated with it, I'll be happy to update this thread. Or if anyone wants to chat about my experience as an early adopter of the RKS product, I'm happy to share what my experience has been so far. But I've been very happy with our choice to go with RKS to this point, and I have a lot of confidence that Travis and Elisabeth will deliver a well-built product that will be in my family for a long, long time.
 
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altonsavagenye

New member
That “pop-up-ette”, why bother if not doing the whole roof?
This is one area where I could see them adapting the design at some point in the future (perhaps on a second model?), but I get the sense that they view the flat roof as a big perk due to additional outdoor eating space, and see it as a better option than an awning that keeps you on ground level. This is likely Influenced by their location in Southern California, where it's outdoor dining weather year round. Before I prodded them a bit on the possibility of having a fold-up bed, they actually didn't have any interior dining/sitting space in the design; the bedroom was just an elevated adjustable bed. Through our conversations this summer, I think they began to weigh the interior sitting/eating/work area a bit more, and the new interior won't have the same elevated bed frame that reduced the clearance between the door to the bathroom and the living area. It should be easier to get through the door separating the bathroom from the living area now than it appears in the pictures of the first "mule" they built, but I'll make sure to report back on how high the Concussion Counter gets.

In terms of why have the extra height in the bathroom, it's for people exactly like my wife. She's on board for camping for a couple nights, but going outside in the middle of the night to pee gets old for her very quickly, and she's definitely a happier camper when she still gets to put makeup on and feel clean in the mornings. If you're doing an indoor toilet to help people like her want to go on longer adventures, putting the extra height in the bathroom to allow for a stand-up shower is definitely a larger value add than putting it in the living area, where you don't need to stand up that much. In my experience with teardrops and other garage-able trailers, you don't need a higher roof line for that many things, so consolidating the shower/make-up/changing clothes area into just the front of the trailer makes sense. It gives us one area where we can keep the dirt and the living areas as separate as possible, but also allows for somewhere to stand up to change clothes without going all the way into the trailer; we definitely see this as a perk when we just want to swap the kids wet shorts for dry clothes after a swim or something.

They don't really show it the website either, but there is an interior "ladder" of sorts built into the bathroom wall that gives interior roof access. I won't talk too much about the RTT they're working on since they haven't put that info on the website yet, but the plan to allow for a trip from the RTT into the bathroom without having to go down to the ground and then back in through the exterior door strikes me as a good one.

I think the production model is going to have some significant design differences from the prototype that will make things more functional than they may appear on their website right now. Or I'm a naive optimist who is about to bang his head on the interior door a lot so that my wife doesn't have to be cold when she gets up to pee in the middle of the night. But if that turns out to be the case, I'll take some head trauma for the team so that you guys can get the Purpose 2.0 with a full pop-up roof. I wouldn't be shocked if they ended up there at some point.
 
A quick note; the 5,200 pound weight is the Timbren load capability, not the trailer weight. Dry weight is supposed to be around ~2,500 pounds.

There's no question this thing is not cheap. That said, I'm pretty confident you can't find anything even remotely similar outside of this 40-50K range. I spent a lot of time looking for something in that 20-30K range that I was comfortable would last long enough to justify the investment, and I couldn't find it. The primary comparable aluminum/honeycomb competitors that I found were built by Overkill Campers (30K base price, ~45-50K similarly optioned), Boreas (48K, not beginning production until next fall), and Off-Grid (28K base, ~40K similarly optioned, but a lot smaller trailer). There are definitely other companies building quality off-road trailers too, but I don't think anything that similar to the RKS exists under 35K, realistically.

I'm the customer mentioned in the article that OP linked. When talking with Travis and Elisabeth about what I was looking for in a trailer, I suggested a few modifications of their interior to allow for an office space, since the way to get my wife on board with this kind of purchase was to stop renting an office for my remote job and reallocate that expense to something that could serve multiple functions. They've been unbelievably great to work with during the process, despite COVID and the wildfires throwing them some curveballs they couldn't have predicted when they launched.

We're on track to pick up our Purpose trailer in the next month or two, and ours will be the inaugural unit to leave the facility (they're building a demo trailer concurrently with ours, so it isn't technically the first one...). If people are interested in updates as we take delivery and learn the specific pros and cons associated with it, I'll be happy to update this thread. Or if anyone wants to chat about my experience as an early adopter of the RKS product, I'm happy to share what my experience has been so far. But I've been very happy with our choice to go with RKS to this point, and I have a lot of confidence that Travis and Elisabeth will deliver a well-built product that will be in my family for a long, long time.
Alton,

Yes please keep us uptdate on how your Purpose trailer works out. Love Bend so much single track and the best Imperial IPA in the fricking world (Bend Brewery)

So I have been on an 8-month obsessive quest to find a rugged travel trailer that fits my very unique needs.

I discovered RKS several months ago. I totally agree with you on all your points about build quality and costs. As far as the dozens of brands in this space RKS stands alone on the lifetime warranty, tank capacity, fit in a 7-foot garage (might be tight with rooftop tent), plumbing routing, electrical routing , lithium, solar , aluminum chassis (I-beam), real bed and rooftop deck.

If one is in the market for an off-road tear drop that has large enough water tanks (70 gal fresh) to actually last a week off grid this is second to none. Then if someone wants said teardrop to have a real bathroom with stand up shower (hence the pop up) then again ‘second to none”. It is 17 feet long. I say that it is still off road capable but if you want to rock crawl in Moab remember it is 17 feet long.

All this said this bad boy does not fit my “unique needs”. I need a rugged hybrid travel trailer / toy hauler that can fit in my 8-foot-tall garage. One that is more like 20 feet long and is a bit wider ( 6' 10" interior). One that has a rear toyhauler door for my special needs daugther(wheelchair) to access. One that has a hard sided pop up (Hybrid). Other then that just the same as the purpose trailer.

Low and behold if you click on “Mini Toyhauler” on the RKS website my dream trailer will appear. I just hope it does come to fruition.
If anyone else out there is looking for the same type of rig contact RKS and beg them to build them and even lay down the $100 deposit so they know there is a huge market for the mini toyhauler.

With peace and love!!
 
This is one area where I could see them adapting the design at some point in the future (perhaps on a second model?), but I get the sense that they view the flat roof as a big perk due to additional outdoor eating space, and see it as a better option than an awning that keeps you on ground level. This is likely Influenced by their location in Southern California, where it's outdoor dining weather year round. Before I prodded them a bit on the possibility of having a fold-up bed, they actually didn't have any interior dining/sitting space in the design; the bedroom was just an elevated adjustable bed. Through our conversations this summer, I think they began to weigh the interior sitting/eating/work area a bit more, and the new interior won't have the same elevated bed frame that reduced the clearance between the door to the bathroom and the living area. It should be easier to get through the door separating the bathroom from the living area now than it appears in the pictures of the first "mule" they built, but I'll make sure to report back on how high the Concussion Counter gets.

In terms of why have the extra height in the bathroom, it's for people exactly like my wife. She's on board for camping for a couple nights, but going outside in the middle of the night to pee gets old for her very quickly, and she's definitely a happier camper when she still gets to put makeup on and feel clean in the mornings. If you're doing an indoor toilet to help people like her want to go on longer adventures, putting the extra height in the bathroom to allow for a stand-up shower is definitely a larger value add than putting it in the living area, where you don't need to stand up that much. In my experience with teardrops and other garage-able trailers, you don't need a higher roof line for that many things, so consolidating the shower/make-up/changing clothes area into just the front of the trailer makes sense. It gives us one area where we can keep the dirt and the living areas as separate as possible, but also allows for somewhere to stand up to change clothes without going all the way into the trailer; we definitely see this as a perk when we just want to swap the kids wet shorts for dry clothes after a swim or something.

They don't really show it the website either, but there is an interior "ladder" of sorts built into the bathroom wall that gives interior roof access. I won't talk too much about the RTT they're working on since they haven't put that info on the website yet, but the plan to allow for a trip from the RTT into the bathroom without having to go down to the ground and then back in through the exterior door strikes me as a good one.

I think the production model is going to have some significant design differences from the prototype that will make things more functional than they may appear on their website right now. Or I'm a naive optimist who is about to bang his head on the interior door a lot so that my wife doesn't have to be cold when she gets up to pee in the middle of the night. But if that turns out to be the case, I'll take some head trauma for the team so that you guys can get the Purpose 2.0 with a full pop-up roof. I wouldn't be shocked if they ended up there at some point.
Alton any chance you could give me a call about RKS
 
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Alton,

Yes please keep us uptdate on how your Purpose trailer works out. Love Bend so much single track and the best Imperial IPA in the fricking world (Bend Brewery)

So I have been on an 8-month obsessive quest to find a rugged travel trailer that fits my very unique needs.

I discovered RKS several months ago. I totally agree with you on all your points about build quality and costs. As far as the dozens of brands in this space RKS stands alone on the lifetime warranty, tank capacity, fit in a 7-foot garage (might be tight with rooftop tent), plumbing routing, electrical routing , lithium, solar , aluminum chassis (I-beam), real bed and rooftop deck.

If one is in the market for an off-road tear drop that has large enough water tanks (70 gal fresh) to actually last a week off grid this is second to none. Then if someone wants said teardrop to have a real bathroom with stand up shower (hence the pop up) then again ‘second to none”. It is 17 feet long. I say that it is still off road capable but if you want to rock crawl in Moab remember it is 17 feet long.

All this said this bad boy does not fit my “unique needs”. I need a rugged hybrid travel trailer / toy hauler that can fit in my 8-foot-tall garage. One that is more like 20 feet long and is a bit wider ( 6' 10" interior). One that has a rear toyhauler door for my special needs daugther(wheelchair) to access. One that has a hard sided pop up (Hybrid). Other then that just the same as the purpose trailer.

Low and behold if you click on “Mini Toyhauler” on the RKS website my dream trailer will appear. I just hope it does come to fruition.
If anyone else out there is looking for the same type of rig contact RKS and beg them to build them and even lay down the $100 deposit so they know there is a huge market for the mini toyhauler.

With peace and love!!

Hey Alton, I hope all is well. I assume you have had your RKS for several months now.
Any updates,?
 
Maybe it has not been long enough since RKS started selling thier trailers last April and maybe there aren't that many being used yet but I am surprised there has not been any posts how they are performing. They seem like a top notch build and like many others have gone up from 39 k to 59 k.
 
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