Posted on 27 August 2017
We've had good weather the past few days (well, it's summer after all) which is good news as bending 5m lengths of tube will be awkward in the garage! The tent frame came out quite well and just about ready for the tent.
I screwed the pipe bender to a bench, then used a second one to keep the sides square. The 19 x 1.6mm tube is not hard to bend. Getting the width right was definately hardest part.
On the lid a smaller clevis mount was bolted to the edge. This should hopefully not collide with those on the camper side when the lid is closed.
I covered the inside of the lid with Andiamo Self-Adhesive Felt Carpet Tiles for some extra insulation.
Below shows the tubes fixed in. The ends are simply squeezed in a vice and drilled for the pin to pass through. The orange spacers are made from gas pipe.
With the frame now in position for measuring the tent I'm a little concerned about the stiffness of the frame. My 1 metre sample seemed solid enough but after making the full-size version, it's has more flex than I'd like...the 10swg, 3mm or steel version would have been better (i.e. stiffer). However it's not a big job to replace if necessary and tubing is not expensive. Lets see how it goes when the tent is on.
So on to the tent. Googling around for suitable materials I came across Rooftop Tent Fabrics and Care which claims Poly Cotton has a number of advantages over nylon, polyester and cotton canvas. So that's a start.
Next - measure up and order the tent material.