Instructables

Roof top car camper

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A fold able camper that attaches like a roof rack.
 
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Step 1: Parts

I made this project a long time ago (before digital cameras) therefore I do not have any step by step pictures. I will try to make up for it with my descriptions.
What you will need:
The really hard parts to find:
2 fiberglass roof top shells from a Volkswagen Westfalia (Caravan for the UKrs) (They used to be fairly easy to find at the wreck yards I got mine for $30 a piece)
2 pop up spring bars from a VW Westfalia (They are the 2 pieces that hold up the roof top and then fold in half to close it)
2 slide hinges from a VW Westfalia (They are the crossbars that slide the roof top open in the front)
1 Canvas set form a VW Westfalia (The fabric that goes around the roof when it's open)
Other easier to find parts:
1/4" plywood for the oval back
extra canvas for the entrance
long zippers for the entrance
latch lock to lock the back when closed
piece of sheet aluminum for the front
4 pieces of metal bars to re-enforce the bottom fiberglass shell
1 pair sturdy roof rack
4 u-bolts to tie the whole thing down to the roof rack
closed cell foam padding for sleep surface
glues, canvas needle and thread, nuts and bolts
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The power of Volvo.
jdlee773 years ago
Here is the photo...
photo-7.JPG
and so the reason we haven't seen an instructable on this beauty is ..... ??
Hey Steve I have not had time to make a full iAble but here is a link to the site I made. www.microcamper.net
jdlee773 years ago
Great iable! I wanted to build something like this for a very long time... but lack of time and materials,I have come up with a system that is compare-able to this. I had my tent mounted on my car for the longest time but found that it can be a pain to go and do things while the camp is set up. So I mounted the tent to my 4x6 trailer. Here it is set up. Look for the iable soon.
Hey jdlee....
still waiting for your indestructible.... ;)
Would really like to know how your tent folds up.

Thanks, later...
Here's the link I promised www.microcamper.net
Hey Kilroy, The tent was a purchase. It has a offset hinge so it can be folded up with the mattress still in the tent.
Cool.Thanks!
jdlee772 years ago
Ok guys, here is the site I made for the camper that I made. We named it MicroCamper. Check it out I posted all of the build pics that I have. Let me know what you think.
photo-7.JPG
courtney2 years ago
cool scirocco, I had the a similar one 79' and I loved it so much that when i finally wore it out, I bought another one
Very cool, will have to remember this when I have more time/materials!
trebuchet037 years ago
That's totally cool! I wish I had a roof rack now :P But I'm not so sure my roof could take the load (I think the rated max is 180lbs).
Modeo (author)  trebuchet037 years ago
I had on a small Volkswagen (as you can see in the picture) with no problems. It actually depends on what kind of a roof rack you put on.
Uh, its a volvo...
Actually, a VW (2nd red car in photographs.)
Hi all from Turkey, I have some pictures Car roof top tents.They are wonderful for camping and traveling.Four family member can stay and sleep in the car top tent. www.carrooftoptent.com
car top tent resimleri 022.jpgcar top tent resimleri 032.jpg
My new web is www.cartopsgw.com
nice plus,which part of Turkey is that?it seems like Antalya but who knows
The pictures was taken in Turkey Aegean Sea coasts.The Roof top tent has automaticly open system.The Eminent Roof Top Tents are best model in the world.I thinkig R.T.T are alternative caravans or motorhomes.They are practical equipment for traveling and outdoor.
Amasra 033.jpgroof top tent 032.jpgroof top tent 151.jpg
oohhhh.i see.
Hi everyone, I have some pictures about winter camping in Ankara Mountain with four seasons Eminent Car Roof Top tents. İt has central heating system under bed.
Eminent Four season Car Top Tent.JPG
Hi, I think that to every where are are good in the world. And eweryone are good. The Turkey is beatiful country, every year fifteen millios tourist comes our country.
Nice,but my dad says that mountain is bad,but good for you if you enjoyed it.
Winter camping photos...
167[1].jpg180[1].jpg
Derin Derin5 years ago
good instructable,4.5/5
panelvanhr_vehicle.jpg
Derin Derin5 years ago
where did that van picture find its way into the comment?
I love that greens behind your car!Gotta keep some beauty in our country. :-)
Wow, you have a G - Wagen! A rare car indeed. We have a G-250 Long wheel base and it is great for camping, although a bit slow. Which model is that?
Hi, My G Wagen is 300 gd 1987 model and short base.İndeed great for camping with Roof top tent.The car sppeed limit is 130 km/h.İt's best 4x4 car in the world.
jottoh125 years ago
QUESTION...fodd for thought? Is this not a site for DIY ideas? Kudos to all those who have built or are building a car top tent or sleeper but whats with the craigslist type action and the shameless plugging of products from a distributor? Am I missing something? Just wondering....Sorry bout' the negativity.
compact5 years ago
Camping the Compact Way

Here is one of my roof top tents, the floor is a trampoline material which makes it very lighweight.
oasis-ladder-sm.jpgsubby-wtent-rainier2.jpgsubiekamper-closed.jpg
Derin5 years ago
we use the family transporter as a camper by putting the air mattress in,inflating it,and stacking the luggage around the mattress. Image snatched off vw website,however the van has a lower ceiling,the top is at the top seam
panelvanhr_vehicle.jpg
ktdiddd6 years ago
In 76 I was camping with my four kids in France in a VW camper with a slider door and button up tent and we met this young German family. They were in a Vw Beetle! They had bought a kit that was basically a fold out box with a pop up tent. The device had four screw together iron pipes with wide flanges on the bottom on the four corners and a few brace wires with turnbuckles for support and stability. They slept on top of their beetle and their daughter on the back seat. In addition to the sleep box on top they had a small two wheel trailer in back with extra gear! Can you imagine going through the Alps in that? It was pretty hairy at times for the five of us in a van.
Modeo (author) 6 years ago
It's for sale if anyone is interested.
mmartz Modeo6 years ago
do you still have this roof top tent for sale?
Dinerro94 Modeo6 years ago
how much?
siki Modeo6 years ago
So, did you sell it?? If not please let me know. I am charmed by the idea but am leaving for Mexico in a couple of weeks (for 3 months camping ) and wouldn't have time to get it together to make one. I suppose the drag might affect gas mileage but no more than all the junk on the roof which is my only solution to storage. I was wanting to see about getting a pop up sleeping roof installed in my van in Mexico but so far inquiries on various forums are bringing up nothing but silence or guffaws. Anyway, well done, love the idea.
I'm somewhat interested if you've still got it. How much and where is it located? I may just attempt to build one on my own, however i imagine the price on the fiberglass shells and tents has skyrocketed.
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