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Old 08-03-2015, 03:53 PM   #1
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Curtains in new Sportsmobile (Sprinter)

We just got our new Sportsmobile a week ago (built on the Sprinter chassis), and did the "curtains" test soon after we brought it home. To our dismay, with the lights on in the van at night and the curtains closed, one can pretty easily see inside the van...I could see the color of the T-shirt my spouse was wearing, where he was, & what he was doing. Anyone else have this problem? Any suggestions? (The pull-down shades are fine; it's just the curtains that become semi-transparent at night).
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Old 08-03-2015, 04:04 PM   #2
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Re: Curtains in new Sportsmobile (Sprinter)

Not sure but in the past they used what they call a day/night shade which was a two piece setup meant to allow some light in during the day but also makes it difficult to see in during daylight hours. Those also allow you to peer out as well. Perhaps yours are designed that way as well??? Can you see out through that shade? If so, yes they are worthless at night unless you pull down the second shade.
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Old 08-03-2015, 05:29 PM   #3
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Re: Curtains in new Sportsmobile (Sprinter)

We have the two-part shades on two of the windows, but curtains for the remainder of the windows...which include the rear windows, the front windshield & front side windows, and the sliding door window. So the majority of the windows have curtains...and the curtains don't provide adequate privacy at night.
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Old 08-03-2015, 07:29 PM   #4
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Re: Curtains in new Sportsmobile (Sprinter)

Hi -- I have a Sportsmobile Sprinter --2014 which I love. Even still working full time --I have been able to camp in it a whole lot. I think you are referring to the cloth covers for inside --the windshield and the windows by the front seats and the large window on the sliding door? I am alone --have a hightop RB --and I bought the Sportsmobile security curtain, too --so if I have a privacy concern --using the curtain inside behind the driver's and passenger's front seats as an extra solves the problem. The side sliding door window ---I have a reflectix window covering for--cut it out from a roll and it fits window well --I keep it behind the gaucho and it can go alone on the window and solve the privacy issue for that window and if I do not want to look at the silver material all evening I can put the snap on curtain over it. Same for the big windshield ---I keep the windshield reflectix piece rolled up just behind the driver's seat and use as needed---it cuts out heat as well as cold. I do have reflectix pieces I cut out of the roll for the side front windows but just bring them if night temperatures will be cold. I think the day /night shades work well on the other windows and again I do bring reflectix pieces for my two back windows but only if I want to help with cold. Congratulations on your Sportsmobile sprinter --I expect you are really going to enjoy it! See inside my van in my galley pictures. I am thinking you could add an extra lining to curtains as needed. Very little time goes by when I am not adding something to my van ---extra touches--such fun!
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Old 08-03-2015, 07:38 PM   #5
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Re: Curtains in new Sportsmobile (Sprinter)

Quote:
Originally Posted by daveb
Not sure but in the past they used what they call a day/night shade which was a two piece setup meant to allow some light in during the day but also makes it difficult to see in during daylight hours. Those also allow you to peer out as well. Perhaps yours are designed that way as well??? Can you see out through that shade? If so, yes they are worthless at night unless you pull down the second shade.

Does anyone know where to get these day/night shades Dave is referring to? I know what they are, just need to find out where to buy them. They are on my list of needs for our build. Thanks!
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Old 08-03-2015, 11:07 PM   #6
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Re: Curtains in new Sportsmobile (Sprinter)

I have the day/night shades in my current rig and they seem exactly the same as the ones I had in my SMB. They are made by "Specialty Window Coverings, Inc." in Elkhart, Indiana.

In many ways they are handy, but there are a few things I don't like about them.

1) They are not entirely private, even in "night" mode. If there is a light on inside, and you are outside, you can somewhat see through them. I mean not like you're going to read a book through them, but not totally private either. Also, someone could peer through the holes where the strings go. Not likely to happen at a campsite, but at a Wal-Mart or Rest Area.... I'd rather they be totally private.

2) You can't exactly lift one corner to peer out like you can with a curtain.

3) They don't open the right way (for horizontally sliding windows) to say, crack one a couple of inches with a window also open a couple of inches. Not a huge issue, but it with a curtain you could "match" the gaps up.

The above said, I do find the day shades handy to pull down against light sun, and for really hot sun, I can slide a piece of Reflectix behind them and the strings hold it (but this would not have worked as well in my SMB because it had side valances).

To the OP: Not that you should have to "fix" your new curtains, but if you want them totally private, consider getting 16 oz. Duvetyne (aka "commando cloth") and lining them with it. It's a sort of velvety cloth that is totally impermeable to light. If you get black, then no-one can even see that you have a curtain - just blackness. One option anyway.
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Old 08-04-2015, 10:35 AM   #7
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Re: Curtains in new Sportsmobile (Sprinter)

Thank you for all the suggestions & feedback! I'll add a curtain liner I think. Meanwhile...Sportsmobile, if you're listening - you need to choose a different curtain fabric, one that provides privacy at night. There are plenty of options available. Both our long-gone 1970 VW camper and our 2001 VW camper had great fabric curtains that provided night time privacy. SMB, you can do better!!
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Old 08-04-2015, 11:45 PM   #8
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Re: Curtains in new Sportsmobile (Sprinter)

The material SMB uses as the curtains in my PH are similar and doesn't work well at night. When I asked why they used that material they told me it was to allow air flow through when the window is open. I also use the reflectix stuff for more privacy.
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Old 08-05-2015, 08:50 AM   #9
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Re: Curtains in new Sportsmobile (Sprinter)

2012 Indiana built Sprinter here:

Did you get the factory Mercedes window tinting? I know that makes a big difference for privacy.

We have the same setup as Viva. Day/Night shade, on the drivers side. I always leave the day shade down. It is hard to slide up/down due to the window cranks for the small windows. Our internal curtain (divider for the front of the cab and rear) is also semi-transparent. However, the roll up window covers for the front windows is not transparent and can't be seen through. We use the roll ups when camping, the sliding privacy screen for quick change of clothes, etc.

I can't say I have had an easy time seeing through either the rear two windows or the door slide out curtain due to the dark tinted windows.

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Old 08-06-2015, 10:58 PM   #10
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Re: Curtains in new Sportsmobile (Sprinter)

Quote:
Originally Posted by 1der
Does anyone know where to get these day/night shades Dave is referring to? I know what they are, just need to find out where to buy them. They are on my list of needs for our build. Thanks!
I'll chuck in a couple cents worth of thread hijack on those dual pull-down shades: They rattle and bang like hell against their frames - especially off pavement (washboard makes me come close to tearing them out and littering the road with them). I am considering ripping them out because they drive me bonkers.
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