Camp Stretcher Recommendations

Submitted: Tuesday, Feb 01, 2005 at 13:16
ThreadID: 20009 Views:32954 Replies:16 FollowUps:11
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Need to buy a couple of camp stretchers and looking for comments about type, brand etc. Good and bad so I can at least sound like I know what I'm talking about when I front the sales people.
We tow an off-road van but sometimes leave it and take the tent when we want to go to more inaccessible places.
We also have a couple of "boomerang" kids (6 ft +) and their partners who sometimes pay us an overnight visit when we are camped. The van (2-berth) has an anex which we use for this purpose. There's nothing like the company of your adult children.
I've had less than happy success with air matresses. The last, a brand name and not a cheap unit, had hole straight out of the box. Tried it before we left home and first tried to use it in CookTown. Slept on the ground most of the time until we finally found the hole and repaired it after swimming at Kalpow Crossing.
Any an all suggestions welcome.
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Reply By: Truckster (Vic) - Tuesday, Feb 01, 2005 at 13:20

Tuesday, Feb 01, 2005 at 13:20
All I can say is TRY before you buy if you can.

I borrowed a set, and for me with a bad back, they were way too hard..

Ive gone back to an air bed myself.
AnswerID: 96037

Follow Up By: Member - Ross P (NSW) - Tuesday, Feb 01, 2005 at 13:40

Tuesday, Feb 01, 2005 at 13:40
Truckster,
Thanks for the quick reply. We also have dicky backs so I'll take your comment on board.
Regards,
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FollowupID: 354809

Reply By: Member - Roachie (SA) - Tuesday, Feb 01, 2005 at 13:46

Tuesday, Feb 01, 2005 at 13:46
I've got a couple I'm just about to donate to the scouts (if they want 'em).
I bought them for my 2 older kids (now 9 & 7) and they were okay for a while, but not anymore. Can't remember the brand, but they have 4 separate "U" shaped steel legs that fit into the holes in separate steel poles which have to be slid into the seam along each edge of the green vynal base material. I soon got sick of threading the steel pipes/poles into the seam each set up and ended up leaving them permanently in place and held in the right spot with a number of short tech screws. Then I just rolled the things up around each other and slid them into the PVC pipe on my roof rack. The 8 "U" shaped legs were then stored in the boot of the camper.
The legs started to lose their springiness after a while and i kept having to bend them back out a couple of inches to enable them to maintain tension on the 2 outer poles, which is all that held the stupid things together. Certainly no good for adults and as uncomfortable as all get-out!!!!!
AnswerID: 96040

Follow Up By: Member - Ross P (NSW) - Tuesday, Feb 01, 2005 at 13:52

Tuesday, Feb 01, 2005 at 13:52
Ta Roachie,

Maybe have to rethink this idea.
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Follow Up By: Truckster (Vic) - Tuesday, Feb 01, 2005 at 14:05

Tuesday, Feb 01, 2005 at 14:05
Sounds exactly like the ones we borrowed. except for the green vinyl, these were blue material...
Snice these were borrowed, and only watched the man assemble them once, I had the Tent up on my own, and fully setup with tables, chairs etc, faster than I got 1 of the 2 beds setup... Needed more practice.
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Reply By: flappa - Tuesday, Feb 01, 2005 at 14:27

Tuesday, Feb 01, 2005 at 14:27
I've got a set that are fantastic.

They are called Disco Beds. (nothing to do with LR).

Not sure if they are still available or not.

They are steel frame , with large Disks that fit into a U shaped bracket on the end of the bed. rated for 200kg each I believe.

You can make it into single beds , a bunk , or a lounge.

FANTASTIC.

One drawback . . . they are/were expensive , and are quite heavy , probably 10kg each ????
AnswerID: 96044

Follow Up By: Member - Ross P (NSW) - Tuesday, Feb 01, 2005 at 14:29

Tuesday, Feb 01, 2005 at 14:29
Disco beds?
Suitable for hortizontal folk dancing?
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Follow Up By: flappa - Tuesday, Feb 01, 2005 at 14:44

Tuesday, Feb 01, 2005 at 14:44
Lol . . . probably . . . very sturdy.
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Reply By: Ken - Tuesday, Feb 01, 2005 at 15:11

Tuesday, Feb 01, 2005 at 15:11
The better half and I took two kids aged 4 and 6, an Oztenet, the old Patrol and two sets of double bunks to central Oz two years ago. We purchased all of the above at the same time. When we went to get the double bunks they did not have the ones in stock that we ordered. So they gave us a Shakespere one and another brand. I have a bad back and the Shakespere was just the ticket. The other one is not that great. About $120.00 a set I think. They are still going well and we also drag them out when the kids have friends for sleep over.
AnswerID: 96050

Follow Up By: Member - Ross P (NSW) - Tuesday, Feb 01, 2005 at 15:23

Tuesday, Feb 01, 2005 at 15:23
Thanks Ken,

I'll keep that brand name in mind.
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FollowupID: 354830

Reply By: Bob Y. - Qld - Tuesday, Feb 01, 2005 at 15:12

Tuesday, Feb 01, 2005 at 15:12
Ross,

When I was a kid, the parents had a canvas stretcher, that folded in half, had 3 feet that had a coil spring on each end, that hooked up onto the side rails of the bed. Gave a firm but comfortable base. Don't know if I'd like to have sleep on it with a bait on board. But not as bad as air bed.

The Stock Inspectors in NT, back in the 70's, used a stretcher/bed, that folded in half, with 3 fold down legs, and a mattress. Like a modern design of a shearers' stretcher. They were good, and they almost always got a good nights sleep. Used to keep them off the ground, especially when the King Browns were about!!! Weren't real heavy, but as bulky as a meduium sized suitcase.

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AnswerID: 96051

Follow Up By: Member - Ross P (NSW) - Tuesday, Feb 01, 2005 at 15:21

Tuesday, Feb 01, 2005 at 15:21
Bob,

I remember those. Use to sleep on one when i visited my mates place. But that was nearly 50 years ago and I am little rounded round the tummy these days!!!!
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Reply By: Kumanara (SA) - Tuesday, Feb 01, 2005 at 15:32

Tuesday, Feb 01, 2005 at 15:32
We bought a couple of stretchers. Bought the best quality we could and still found them uncomfortable.

I have never had any luck with air-mattresses. They always go flat.

Bought and used a queen size Coleman self inflating mattress instead. It was great. There are other brands equally as good.

I would recommend you purchase a self inflating matress instead of stretchers. The final decisions is obviously yours.
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AnswerID: 96055

Follow Up By: locallaw - Tuesday, Feb 01, 2005 at 18:56

Tuesday, Feb 01, 2005 at 18:56
Gidday,The handbrake and I have tried different beds and found that the self inflating mattress's were exactly what we wanted.I lent the mattress to a friend and he complained that it was the most uncomfortable thing he had ever tried to sleep on.The problem he was that he did'nt do up the valve before going to bed.
Seeya Locallaw
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FollowupID: 354865

Follow Up By: Truckster (Vic) - Tuesday, Feb 01, 2005 at 22:42

Tuesday, Feb 01, 2005 at 22:42
Only issue with queensize self inflating, is that it wont fit in the back of the GQ, its wider than the car! We needed a roofrack, so bye bye to the queensize.
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Reply By: Member - Mozza (NSW) - Tuesday, Feb 01, 2005 at 15:38

Tuesday, Feb 01, 2005 at 15:38
i also highly rate my double self-inflating matress better than both standard blow-ups and strechers.
the only down side is their size when 'deflated'.. but then again.. that's a big van your towing.. lotsa room inside!.
you could even use it as your bed inside your van.. than on your o'night trips deflate it and throw it on the roof of the car?
AnswerID: 96057

Reply By: 80scruiser - Tuesday, Feb 01, 2005 at 15:55

Tuesday, Feb 01, 2005 at 15:55
I bought some stretchers for $39.00 each from Boots.
Take about 5 minutes to put together and pack flat.
I put my mattress from my swag on it and sleep great. ( I sleep better on these than the $2000.00 bed at home. I threatened the missus that I would put my tent up and sleep out in the yard with the dog on my stretcher but thats another story)
I chose these ones as they fold up flat and pack really well. They are a canvas style bed with tubular frame. Only drama is that if you carry them inside the car and don't pack them properly they can rattle. We either carry them in the roof bag or lay them flat and put our bags ontop. For the money can't go wrong. They probably take up less room than air mattress.
AnswerID: 96061

Reply By: BigPop - Tuesday, Feb 01, 2005 at 16:57

Tuesday, Feb 01, 2005 at 16:57
I got this one for Xmas from the States link text
and bought some 2" HD foam locally for a mattress.

It worked out at the same price as the X legged ones you buy in Oz but the freight made it a tad dearer - orderd on a Thursday and had it on me front doorstep lunchtime the following Thursday.

Tried it out and it would be one of the most comfortable beds I've slept in - I'm not a 'lightweight' and not a 'small pixie either' and this 'cot' is over 7' long and about 1m wide and as comfortable as can be. I'm glad I got it and looking at the Oz ones they don't come anywhere near the quality etc of this one.

At least no one will come near my camp now because of the simple equation :- comfy bed = lotsa loud snoring :):):):)

Regards
BigPop
(I never get lost because everyone tells me where to go)
AnswerID: 96076

Follow Up By: BigPop - Tuesday, Feb 01, 2005 at 18:39

Tuesday, Feb 01, 2005 at 18:39
Forgot to mention - I also have a really bad back and getting down on the ground to low beds, air mattresses, swags etc is out of the question for me. Once down I'm like a turtle on it's back - stuffed and have trouble getting back up so need something a bit higher off the ground.
I did make a double wooden slatted bed up to take away for the missus and me but it was just too much of a hassle to erect etc so we settled for these stretchers and now we both have a very comfortable nights sleep and my back isn't crook in the morning when I get up, as it would be/and is with air beds etc..
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FollowupID: 354863

Reply By: Member - Sand Man (SA) - Tuesday, Feb 01, 2005 at 18:12

Tuesday, Feb 01, 2005 at 18:12
Ross,

Do yourself a favor and forget the stretchers. They are just downright uncomfortable.

IMHO you will be better off with good quality Swags. The high density matresses are quite comfortable and the swag gives you greater flexibility. (eg. sleeping in them without any tent, camper, caravan, etc.

Bill


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AnswerID: 96089

Follow Up By: Truckster (Vic) - Tuesday, Feb 01, 2005 at 22:43

Tuesday, Feb 01, 2005 at 22:43
Swags are good, but thye take up a hell of a lot of room...
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FollowupID: 354926

Reply By: Richard & Leonie - Tuesday, Feb 01, 2005 at 21:56

Tuesday, Feb 01, 2005 at 21:56
It took me a while to discover why our stretchers were uncomfortable. When you lie in them you are lying in a trench. Everytime you want to turn over, which one does numerous times during the night, you are constantly trying to overcome the trench effect. Its like climbing uphill all night. Back to the blowups, which sometimes go flat but overall are great, especially as they are adjustrable for whoever uses them. Self inflating are great but too hard to put away, especially if they are over 20mm thick.
AnswerID: 96148

Reply By: Troopy Travellers (NSW) - Wednesday, Feb 02, 2005 at 08:57

Wednesday, Feb 02, 2005 at 08:57
We have got the Xleg Al stretcher, large, from "Boots Outdoor Stores" $210 for 2. We use our self inflating mattress on top. Terrific & comfortable, I highly recommend them. Also. they fold up easily for storage..
Sparky
AnswerID: 96189

Reply By: old-plodder - Wednesday, Feb 02, 2005 at 18:54

Wednesday, Feb 02, 2005 at 18:54
I remember the old canvas stretchers, not too bad. Our boys are now 6' plus and finding a stretcher is a real problem. The discos wern't too bad. Gave up on airbeds. Been using a piece of 20mm very high density foam in a canvas cover onupside and vinyl on downside. Wife who has a bad back reckons she sleeps better on holidays than the sealy at home. Has been known to pull the camp mattress out at home when her back is troubling her.
The foam rolls up to about 350mm in dia. If space a problem, cut it a bit shorter. Your feet don't need a mattress. Just use a blanket or something underneath when it is cold.
AnswerID: 96300

Reply By: DARREN - Wednesday, Feb 02, 2005 at 19:54

Wednesday, Feb 02, 2005 at 19:54
As mentioned above the coleman self inflating double mattresses are great & the closest thing to my bed at home I have tried, yes they are very big when deflated but if you have room they are worth it. I slip on a fitted sheet and it feels like a "proper" mattress. If interested in one I suggest Rays (asuming they are in NSW) when they have their 20% off sales.

Regards,

Darren
AnswerID: 96306

Reply By: StormyKnight - Wednesday, Feb 02, 2005 at 20:35

Wednesday, Feb 02, 2005 at 20:35
Not sure if you have one of these stors near you but, we have 2 of the beds at the top of this page & find them a good compremise between space & comfort. I like being off the ground a bit & you can adjust where the springs attach so you can overcome some of the trench effect. They also fold up into a handy carry bag.

Aussie Disposals

Cheers
Richard
AnswerID: 96312

Reply By: Mike-TS - Wednesday, Feb 02, 2005 at 23:30

Wednesday, Feb 02, 2005 at 23:30
Great Outdoors 60 mm self inflating - the long blue ones. Best I've tried and I've tried a few!

Of course, what I mean is that I have bought many and tried them then disgarded!
AnswerID: 96366

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