Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
 
Old 06-28-2018, 11:13 PM   #1
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2018
Posts: 8
Bottomless RTT instead of a popup?

Hi,
I hang out at another forum and a fellow there posted a build of an ambulance with a cubed rear. He bought a James Baroud popup RTT, cut the bottom out of it, and mounted it to the top of his ambulance. Shazaam! Standing room after purchasing an appr. $4000.00 RTT (and probably a good amount of work).

Has anyone else thought about something similar? I happen to own a Baroud RTT and a 4X4 van. Hmmmmm. I plan to build the bed on the deck of the van. It would be really nice to have the ventilation and standing space (over the bathroom area) without spending 10K on a popup. Especially after reading some of the threads about popup build quality lately.

Maybe we will accidentally find a way to make a van popup reasonably-priced. Thoughts welcome.
__________________

jacobconroy75 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-29-2018, 04:20 AM   #2
Senior Member
 
Bbasso's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: Western North Carolina
Posts: 1,258
Ever since I saw that build I wanted to do the same but my high top roof is very curved and prohibits it. But if I could, I would. It's comes across as an affordable option vs the 'poptops'
__________________

__________________
Rob.
Current:
2001 E350 PSD w/ a bunch of stuff.
And had three other E350s...
Bbasso is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-29-2018, 07:42 AM   #3
Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2013
Posts: 77
I have seen the ambo you mentioned.
Considered the same for my e350.
There are some issues to overcome, like the curvature of the roof which could be created with fiberglass/epoxy, or aluminum.
Also I would prefer the locking system be reinstalled on the inside somehow.
__________________
Pinnacle Campers LLC, Boise Idaho
Brian94ht is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-29-2018, 09:00 AM   #4
Senior Member
 
rallypanam's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2013
Location: San Francisco/Nevada City
Posts: 3,638
Buddy of mine did that with his sprinter.. works pretty good, but not as good as a “real” pop top due to limited size.

rallypanam is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 06-29-2018, 09:29 AM   #5
Senior Member
 
MountainBikeRoamer's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2014
Location: OrangeCounty, CA
Posts: 1,236
Garage
Quote:
Originally Posted by jacobconroy75 View Post
Hi,
I hang out at another forum and a fellow there posted a build of an ambulance with a cubed rear. He bought a James Baroud popup RTT, cut the bottom out of it, and mounted it to the top of his ambulance. Shazaam! Standing room after purchasing an appr. $4000.00 RTT (and probably a good amount of work).
Hey, was it this one?
We met this guy / camped with him in Anza Borrego earlier this year. Really nice conversion like you're describing, 7.3L with an Agile TTB suspension in it.



He and his buddy with the converted school bus (also 7.3L, and also 4WD, but Quigley) were on an extended vacation, traveling up and down the West coast and towing a giant military trailer loaded with jugs of recycled veggie oil (as their primary fuel source.)



Really nice build! The pop-top super well integrated inside. Very clean. And holy crap does that Agile TTB suspension ride smooth....he was giving everyone white-knuckle ride-alongs over the rutted/whoop-filled roads in the ORV park, at speeds approaching freeway speeds....and the whole time it felt like you were riding in a Cadillac.

Btw --- the pair of owners (and their accompanying friends/family) were from B.C. Canada. Super nice. They saw our SMB pop-tops and rolled right over to make friends and join our group. Great trip, great folks.

__________________
Mike T
___________________
'95 Ford E250 RB30 PH
MountainBikeRoamer is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-29-2018, 11:36 AM   #6
Senior Member
 
rallypanam's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2013
Location: San Francisco/Nevada City
Posts: 3,638
His build thread here - member Abitibi:

http://www.sportsmobileforum.com/for...ance-9789.html
rallypanam is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 06-29-2018, 06:47 PM   #7
Senior Member
 
86Scotty's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: TN
Posts: 8,160
Iíve always wanted to try this too. My idea was to use one of the super cheap Chinese/eBay clamshell RTTís since youíre kind of going to butcher it anyway.

Bigfoot is cheaper that the no-name ones right now though, and in black to boot!

https://rover.ebay.com/rover/0/0/0?m...2F323318989726


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
__________________
Currently vanless. Weird.
86Scotty is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-09-2018, 09:31 AM   #8
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2014
Location: Riverside Ca.
Posts: 185
I've had the vision to buy a Naval Chevy with the Duramax or 6.5 with a box ext over the cab then cut it 6"s from the top and use 4 actuators to raise it. I would do a rear entry with awnings on side and back. I almost had a surplus Naval van lined up but backed out because I love my 7.3 and just prefer Ford E series!
Vanimal is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-09-2018, 10:05 AM   #9
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2016
Location: So Cal
Posts: 9
Structural Stability:

When SMB puts in a penthouse, the Van body is actually stronger than it prior to modification (per SBM, always consider the source). In this case, they use it as a selling point. How is this so? They put a frame in.

I'm no engineer, but this is something I'd think about, then get advice from someone who knows, before I cut the top out of anything.

Sorry, no answer here, just another potential issue with what otherwise sounds like a really cool solution. I'd probably go with what someone else has designed tested and is willing to put their liability upon.

Best of Luck.
Sam C is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-09-2018, 10:33 AM   #10
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2018
Posts: 8
Thanks for the replies all.

Yes, I think that is the same Ambo that I was talking about. Sure looks like it, and it's a pretty cool setup.

Due to the curvature of the roof on Ford vans, my thought was to cut a hole in the roof (after much planning, measuring, and double-checking), weld in a new frame to support the old supports, and weld up a "plenum" to support the tent. This would be a lot of work, but it would solve the curve issue. It would also give you a lot of options for the depth of storage for bedding, a better mattress, some sort of winch system for opening/closing, etc.

When I bought my James Baroud, the salesman told me that I can buy the complete cloth replacement for $350.00. They sell them at their cost as a courtesy. I wonder what these popup companies charge for new canvas?
__________________

jacobconroy75 is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off

Powered by vBadvanced CMPS v3.2.3
Disclaimer:

This website is not affiliated with or endorsed by Sportsmobile SIP or any of its affiliates. This is an independent, unofficial site.


All times are GMT -6. The time now is 08:18 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 4
Copyright ©2000 - 2019, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.