Camper Trailer "Tropical Roof" Cooler?

Submitted: Thursday, Jan 10, 2008 at 09:07
ThreadID: 53296 Views:19295 Replies:7 FollowUps:4
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Having recently sufferd through 5 or 6 consecutive days of 45 degree plus heat, all I could think about was keeping the camper trailer even slightly cooler, particularly first thing in the morning when the sun hits the roof. I know you could say look for shade, but we were on the Murray, & those 'widowmakers" are a real worry.

I would like to hear from anyone with firsthand experience, if the canvas 'tropical roof' over the existing tent is worthwhile. I know some manufacturers now fit them as standard.
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Reply By: Member -Dodger - Thursday, Jan 10, 2008 at 09:18

Thursday, Jan 10, 2008 at 09:18
I have seen 2 Ideas that can help,
One couple had a small pump that was getting water from the river and pumping it through a soaker hose placed across the canvas roof thus creating a water bag effect.
We tried it with our canvas annex on the van and it worked a treat knocking about 5 deg off the ambiant temp. We used a very small petrol water pump and once it picked the water up left it on idle which was enough to keep the soaker hose going.

Another idea we saw was heavy duty shade cloth about 75% that was strung over a tent but held about 300mm above the tent itself. The owner said it helped a great deal.
I used to have a handle on life, but it broke.

Cheers Dodg.

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Follow Up By: Shaker - Thursday, Jan 10, 2008 at 09:34

Thursday, Jan 10, 2008 at 09:34
I was considering a more permanent idea, with an extra bow above the ridge bow & canvas extending to the outside top corners.
The anti-generator brigade wouldn't like the motorised pump idea, plus the idea was to extend morning sleep time past sunrise!

Thanks for the ideas though.
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Reply By: Member - Magic (VIC) - Thursday, Jan 10, 2008 at 09:32

Thursday, Jan 10, 2008 at 09:32
Hi Shaker
We have a tropical roof on our Ulitmate CT and spent the last two weeks up the Yarra Valley in all this heat. Bloody hot, but although it wasn't cool in the CT there was a difference which I believe was due to the roof. Certainly cooler than our old Jayco would have been.

I've heard that if you string a tarp over the tent or CT - leaving a bit of a gap - this gives a similar effect.

Cheers,

Jeanne
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Follow Up By: Shaker - Thursday, Jan 10, 2008 at 09:35

Thursday, Jan 10, 2008 at 09:35
Thank you.
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Reply By: Member - Philip S (SA) - Thursday, Jan 10, 2008 at 09:46

Thursday, Jan 10, 2008 at 09:46
When I was a kid in Africa and we went camping it was standard practice then that all the old fashioned tents that had a high ridge pole also had a 'fly sheet' made of much lighter canvas pitched over the whole shebang giving a space between that and the tent ranging from about 10cm at the ridge to about 40 cm near the ground, giving a large air space between the fly and the tent proper. Result - the sun never shone on the tent itself, and any breeze circulated under the fly sheet as well. It was very effective.

It follows that a good large fly sheet made of shade cloth or similar pitched over the CT or caravan for that matter must make a big difference. You probably wouldn't bother for an overnight stay, but camping in one spot for several days it would be well worth while.
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Reply By: Member - Mike (SA) - Thursday, Jan 10, 2008 at 09:53

Thursday, Jan 10, 2008 at 09:53
Another effective alternative for your consideration is to use a solar reflective/insulated foam sheet. This is available ready made from CT manufacturers in Adelaide and has sewn in tags for attachment etc. Lies on the canvas and reflects the heat away. Works well but cumbersome on overnight stops. I carry mine on roof rack in canvas bag. That keeps it safe an out of way when not required. Seldom in this weather!!

regards

Mike
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Follow Up By: Member - barbara M (NSW) - Thursday, Jan 10, 2008 at 10:09

Thursday, Jan 10, 2008 at 10:09
Hi Mike,
Would you please give more information on this product please where to get it, how much etc
barb
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Follow Up By: Member - Pedro the One (QLD) - Friday, Jan 11, 2008 at 02:12

Friday, Jan 11, 2008 at 02:12
Hi Barb .......

I agree with the above comments generally, whilst not really knowing what a Tropical Roof is ... ???

However, I do carry, and use constantly, a standard silver and green Tarp, available at most Camping/hardware shops and are reasonably inexpensive.

Strung a foot or so above my tent, in the very hot of North Qld ... they really make an appreciable difference. Silver side UP, of course.

And I'll soon be using it over my new CamperTrailer .... have no doubt it will be effective there also.

Actually, I carry 2, sometimes 3 of differing sizes .... very handy as awnings from the Troopy when away from base camp.

And, iffen you angle them correctly, when it rains you can catch the run-off and replenish your water supply !!
But let the first few minute of rain wash off the dust first ...........



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Reply By: Member - Mike (SA) - Thursday, Jan 10, 2008 at 11:03

Thursday, Jan 10, 2008 at 11:03
Sorry I should have given that at the time!!

http://www.cavaliercampertrailers.com.au/extras.htm#solar

No link with the company concerned but very happy with the product.

regards

Mike
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Reply By: Gronk - Thursday, Jan 10, 2008 at 12:11

Thursday, Jan 10, 2008 at 12:11
Have a tropical roof on my KK, and although KK say it keeps the temps down.....it's a bit like comparing a white and black car........ one will get to 55 deg and one only gets to 48 deg ??? ........but both are still bloody hot in full sun...

Every bit helps, but in full sun, 35 deg, the CT is not the place I want to be in !!!!
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Reply By: GaryW - Thursday, Jan 10, 2008 at 13:18

Thursday, Jan 10, 2008 at 13:18
We have an Assieswag which have the Tropical Roof as standard - it quite effective especially in the morning.
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