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Old 04-18-2017, 01:22 PM   #1
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Fixed Top interior height questions

After searching/reading fixed top vs. pop top threads I've decided to go fixed top. The wet & cold PacNW, the desire to stand at anytime and storage cabinet areas are the most weighted factors.

Keeping overall exterior height under 9' is a random goal (should that be a concern?) So I'm trying to get the shortest top I can to allow my 5'10" (and shrinking) body to stand in.

I'm aware of MSD's 24" and been in contact with Tufport about their 15" and 28" options.

Fiberine said their 16" aero gives 5'9" standing height metal floor to unfinished top, 20" just over 6'1" and 24" gives just over 6'5".

So, the Fiberine 20" seems just about perfect.. Full Size Van Tops

Is 2" - 3" a fair estimate for space taken up with a properly insulated and finished floor and ceiling?


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Old 04-18-2017, 01:29 PM   #2
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98 Silver E350 V10 home build
Rusty the Rusty 95 SMB (sold)
Tryptovan the blue CCV van (sold)
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Old 04-19-2017, 07:13 AM   #3
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Thanks Scotty.

I'm still on the fence between the 20" vs. 24"...

24" Pros - More standing height, more upper storage, more insulation.

24" Cons - I fit in the 20", exterior height exceeds 9'

Anyone have opinons on this?

Does being over 9' change anything?


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Old 04-19-2017, 07:22 AM   #4
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Our van is right at about 9' with rack and panel, it is a pop top e350 however. Exterior wise we never stress about that number, well so far. We monitor low hanging stuff, keep out of parking garages in general, ha, but not a primary concern for us.
When that PT goes up theres a ton of room; but that's not the point for your angle: we're 5'7" and 5'9" and when we stand in the hight top rigs that give 6'3" built out we feel comfortable. Neither of us prefer that ceiling being 'just makable'. Our advise would be 6" works ( oh, no pun intended). And, that sounds like the 24".
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Old 04-19-2017, 11:07 AM   #5
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I have an MSD 24"-26" top and it is 6' 2" exactly from unfinished floor to unfinished ceiling. I added a roof rack and a cargo carrier which puts me at 10' 10". I was at 9' 2" prior to the top and the extra height hasn't changed anything for me except I can't go through the A&W drive through any more.

Granted I haven't been on any new trails since but I never had a height issue anywhere I went before so whats another 2 feet? haha

For some reason I don't see how the fiberine 24" can be 6' 5", especially if they add wood reinforcements. Maybe reach out to sixstringsteve on here or expo forum since he recently had a fiberine 24" installed and has yet to do a build out last I heard.

It took me 3 years to finally make the decision on fixed or pop top. Now that I am knee deep in my build I can't imagine going any other way. Going from 9' to almost 11' has made little difference for my use. I never ran into a situation that being at 9' would have made one bit of difference compared to 11' I have yet to see an under pass, bridge, etc that only allowed under 10', the closest has been 12', usually 15'. I forgot about using parking garages as soon as I did my ujoint 6" back in 2009. Off road I don't worry about getting dings or scratches since that is what my rig is built for. I've got more solar now half is protected by the roof rack. I'll gladly sacrifice a panel if it means getting somewhere awesome.

For reference Semi truck trailers are 13' 6", most truck campers are 10'-12'

Good luck, it's not an easy decision for sure.
Home Built Camper Van - 2003 EB 15 Passenger, 7.3 PSD, Ujoint 6" Lift, 35x12.50x17E BFG AT2 , MSD High Top
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Old 04-19-2017, 11:56 AM   #6
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My 24" voyager top clocks in around 6 feet with flooring as plywood and carpeting and 3-4" added to underside of top for structure (bonded wood) fantastic fan thickness of the paneling, and lighting. I'm 6'2" with shoes on and can't totally straighten my back. So I cock my head.
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Old 04-20-2017, 11:18 AM   #7
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Thanks for the input guys.

I got hung up on 9' since it seems to be a standard Drive Thru height. I do plan on adding a rack and solar panels so I'd be over 9' anyway with the 20", 4" inches increases overall height by a mere 3.7%...

Fiberine's install option is nice and they're close to my dad's shop for self install. I have access to a flat bed to pickup, inside work space, lots of sheet metal tools and fork lift.

Anyone know the cut-out dimensions that will also allow for a CCV Pop-Top if I ever decide to go that route? Can't see it happening but seems like a good idea.

My two year anniversary of ownership is in 5 days... it's time to lift the lid.

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Old 04-20-2017, 01:03 PM   #8
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Go with the larger top, I dont think it will limit you any more than the lower one will. Might as well have the space and enjoy it.
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Old 04-20-2017, 01:55 PM   #9
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Go with the biggest top you can afford . The only bad thing is not going to the drive through to get the poison they sell lol
2001 E350 PSD w/ a bunch of stuff.
And had three other E350s...
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Old 04-21-2017, 10:37 AM   #10
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24" is the winner...

The Jimmy Buffet SMB makes the 24" seem totally reasonable

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