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Old 03-30-2014, 11:14 PM   #1
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How do you climb to the Penhouse

Ok so we are not that young anymore and love to sleep upstairs.
Is there some steps or ladder that could work with SMB upstairs bed setup?
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Old 03-31-2014, 08:28 AM   #2
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Re: How do you climb to the Penhouse

nice timing for this thread! we are right in the middle of building our bedframe and once its done, we will need a way up to it. most the ladders ive seen are super skinny...and i am not. im hoping to find a wider version at our local rv junkyard. preferably, one thats easy on the unshoed feets. what would be perfect in my little world is a step ladder that we could use to get in the van, and then doubled as one for the upper bedroom

ive seen a few of the members setups where they can stratigically step in one spot, then on another and not use a ladder at all, but until we finish our build, a ladder will be a must. if people are posting up, id love to see pix of your ladder steups, even if no ladder is involved. if you bought it, please list up where it was purchased and a roundabout price if you dont mind
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Old 03-31-2014, 08:53 AM   #3
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Re: How do you climb to the Penhouse

Here is my do it all ladder solution. It worked great in my last van, but due to the cabinets in my current van, as Shenrie noted, we don't use it inside anymore. Anyway, these are great little ladders, but maybe not the best for anyone much over 200. I am near that and it works fine if the ladder is not fully extended, like indoors as a bunk ladder, but when I use it outside to access the roof I have to place the bottom further away from the van so the rungs don't rest on the side of the van, and this causes it to bend a good bit. It is made to do this and hasn't hurt the ladder, just FYI.

http://www.amazon.com/Xtend-Climb-750P- ... imb+ladder

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Old 03-31-2014, 09:26 AM   #4
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Re: How do you climb to the Penhouse

I used a Rubbermaid "Step Stool" about 18" high for a while that doubled as an extra seat or a way for older folks to get into the van. It wasn't quite tall enough to make for an easy way to get up to the penthouse (I'm 5'5") so I broke down and bought a 3-step step-ladder. It takes up more room and is not as multi-functional, but makes the up and down, especially in the middle of the night, much easier.
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Old 03-31-2014, 09:29 AM   #5
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Re: How do you climb to the Penhouse

I would recommend installing the penthouse bed before getting a ladder. I was looking and looking for the right ladder only to discover after the bed was installed that we did not need one. There was a storage cabinet in the right location in our layout that provided the step needed to get onto the penthouse bed. No ladder to stow.
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Old 03-31-2014, 10:46 AM   #6
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Re: How do you climb to the Penhouse

We have an 50 floor plan. We pull out the Porta Potty at night anyway and it makes it easy to step on it and then step on top of the refrigerator to get up and down from the penthouse.

When we have the original Thetford Porta Potty, we finally cracked lid by stepping too close to the center of it...stepping near the outside works. So, after replacing the lid, I put a strip of non-slip tape (like you might put on wood stairs) so that we would step on the right spot on the lid. However, while that made it last a lot longer, it finally cracked too.

We've since replaced the Thetford unit with one from Dometic (Camping World) which is designed to be stepped on. It is about a inch shorter than the Thetford one but works fine...and we won't need to continually worry about cracking the lid with it.
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Old 03-31-2014, 11:44 AM   #7
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Re: How do you climb to the Penhouse

If I were to do it over I would try to have cabinets configured so a step isn't needed. I use a folding step on my 50 to make it to the 4cf fridge and up to the PH. Having to store and pull out a step is a slight hassle to do each night. Each floor layout can change how you get up there though. In the 50 model I have to sleep with my head pointing toward the rear. I would rather be positioned the other way but it just doesn't work out that way for me so the refrigerator countertop is the only way up unless I hauled some kind of huge ladder that would be in the way. Wish I would have had SMB install a rear window but that's another thread. I store the step behind the bench seat. The step needs to be about 17" to make it comfortable to reach the tall refrigerator top.

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Old 03-31-2014, 05:21 PM   #8
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Re: How do you climb to the Penhouse

Yeah, I can use either counter or gaucho or both. I've also used one of the little step stools, which is handy for all sorts of other stuff.
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Old 03-31-2014, 06:41 PM   #9
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Re: How do you climb to the Penhouse

Call Kenny at Aluminess and they wil build you an aluminum ladder just for your sporty. I have one and can take pictures if needed. The Mrs. Loves it in the middle of the night.
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Old 03-31-2014, 09:07 PM   #10
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Re: How do you climb to the Penhouse

Thanks everyone,

Goprocowboy, can I please get a picture of your Alumines solution. Sounds, from the number of replies, that many SMB's might be interested!
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