Outdoors

Skycamp hard-shell roof-top tent expands to sleep the family

Skycamp hard-shell roof-top te...
The Skycamp sets up in no time and sleeps a family of four
The Skycamp sets up in no time and sleeps a family of four
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The Skycamp offered on Kickstarter comes in white and black shells
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The Skycamp offered on Kickstarter comes in white and black shells
The Skycamp is designed to ride light and aerodynamically while expanding beyond the usual hard-shell tent footprint at camp
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The Skycamp is designed to ride light and aerodynamically while expanding beyond the usual hard-shell tent footprint at camp
At camp, the Skycamp offers an elevated tent with king-size bed
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At camp, the Skycamp offers an elevated tent with king-size bed
iKamper offers an optional awning for some sheltered outdoor living space
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iKamper offers an optional awning for some sheltered outdoor living space
Camping with the iKamper Skycamp roof-top tent
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Camping with the iKamper Skycamp roof-top tent
The average hard-shell's floor area would be contained within the vehicle roof area, but the Skycamp folds out for more space, sleeping up to four people
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The average hard-shell's floor area would be contained within the vehicle roof area, but the Skycamp folds out for more space, sleeping up to four people
The Skycamp is a nice option for those that like the hard-shell tent but need more sleeping space than other models can provide
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The Skycamp is a nice option for those that like the hard-shell tent but need more sleeping space than other models can provide
Another accessory on offer is the annex room
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Another accessory on offer is the annex room
Camping with the iKamper Skycamp roof-top tent
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Camping with the iKamper Skycamp roof-top tent
The available awning provides shelter for sitting, cooking, dining and more
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The available awning provides shelter for sitting, cooking, dining and more
The Skycamp features an aluminum honeycomb floor
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The Skycamp features an aluminum honeycomb floor
Depending upon what you mount it to, the iKamper Skycamp completes an on- or off-road adventure rig
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Depending upon what you mount it to, the iKamper Skycamp completes an on- or off-road adventure rig
Camping with the iKamper Skycamp roof-top tent
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Camping with the iKamper Skycamp roof-top tent
The Skycamp weighs about 152 lb and is designed to mount easily to cross bars
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The Skycamp weighs about 152 lb and is designed to mount easily to cross bars
The Skycamp annex room is one of several accessories available through the Kickstarter campaign
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The Skycamp annex room is one of several accessories available through the Kickstarter campaign
The Skycamp sets up in no time and sleeps a family of four
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The Skycamp sets up in no time and sleeps a family of four
iKamper is offering a super early bird and early bird Kickstarter structure that offers extra savings for the earliest pledgers, with prices as low as $1,950
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iKamper is offering a super early bird and early bird Kickstarter structure that offers extra savings for the earliest pledgers, with prices as low as $1,950
Inside the iKamper Skycamp
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Inside the iKamper Skycamp
A comparison of Skycamp to non-expandable roof-top tent
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A comparison of Skycamp to non-expandable roof-top tent
iKamper introduces the Skycamp
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iKamper introduces the Skycamp

After showing the Hardtop One roof-top tent and Room in Room indoor bed tent, South Korea's iKamper is back with yet another innovation in canvas-walled sheltering. Much like the Hardtop One, the new Skycamp is an expandable hard-shell rooftop tent. Its unique design allows it to set up and drop into place ready to sleep a family of four in under 60 seconds. Effectively combining the aerodynamic and toughness advantages of the hard-shell roof-top tent with the added space of a fold-out tent, it provides a clear view of the sky to boot.

Before going any further, we need to make a confession. When we first reported on the Hardtop One, we misunderstood the expansion mechanism it used to increase its floor size, mistakenly believing it used a folding mechanism. But as we learned when we got a firsthand look at Overland Expo West 2016, that model actually uses a slide-out floor panel to increase in size.

The Skycamp, which we also saw previewed at Overland Expo, is the iKamper model that uses a fold-out expansion. Both expansion mechanisms look smooth and easy to use, and both tents' hard shell cases are designed to improve aerodynamics and durability during the ride, while offering super-easy set-up and takedown at camp. iKamper is now making an official Skycamp introduction on Kickstarter.

At camp, the Skycamp offers an elevated tent with king-size bed
At camp, the Skycamp offers an elevated tent with king-size bed

The problem with hard-shell roof-top tents in general is that their floor space is typically limited to what can fit between the sides of the vehicle, whereas fabric fold-out tents expand at camp. With the Skycamp's expansion system, iKamper gets around this hard-shell tent limitation, offering a rugged, aerodynamic box that folds out into a family-size tent for three adults, or two adults and two children.

iKamper says the tent takes less than a minute to set up. You start by unlatching it and popping the clamshell top open, before pulling the telescoping ladder out and dropping the fold-out extension down. Then, well, that's it. You can get to relaxing around the campsite.

The Skycamp features a clamshell design in which the hard roof folds to the side and acts as a tent wall. This differs from the Hardtop One's top, which pops straight up and serves as a roof. The Skycamp's configuration allows for a bonus feature: a transparent "skyview" panel in the roof canvas, providing a view of the stars as you lie in bed.

iKamper is offering a super early bird and early bird Kickstarter structure that offers extra savings for the earliest pledgers, with prices as low as $1,950
iKamper is offering a super early bird and early bird Kickstarter structure that offers extra savings for the earliest pledgers, with prices as low as $1,950

The Skycamp has a fiber-reinforced plastic shell and aluminum honeycomb floor, while the integrated 82.6 x 74.8-in (210 x 190-cm) king size mattress is made from 1.2-in-thick (3-cm-thick) high-density memory foam. The tent weighs an estimated 152 lb (69 kg).

Buyers can choose from two wind/waterproof tent materials: 250D poly is lighter in weight and offers easier maintenance, while poly-cotton canvas offers better breathability and insulation and makes less noise in the wind. Both fabrics come with a rainfly. IKamper has tested the Skycamper in winds of 44 mph (70 km/h) and says it holds strong (though it doesn't recommend spending the night in that type of wind).

iKamper's super-early bird pricing of US$1,950 for the poly version and $2,150 for the canvas version has proven quite popular on Kickstarter, catapulting iKamper's campaign right over US$1 million in less than a day (on a $100,000 goal). The company offers free pickup at its LA warehouses or shipping to your doorstep in the continental US ($380 flat rate) or to select cities internationally (costs vary). Retail pricing is estimated at US$2,950 for the poly version and $3,500 for the canvas model.

Super early bird pricing is still available as of publishing but will expire within a matter of hours, making way for early bird pricing, which itself will only be available for 48 hours. After that, iKamper will be running additional campaign specials. Accessories available through the campaign include an awning, annex room and wind deflector.

The first video below provides an introduction of the Skycamp and shows it out and about, and the quick second clip shows it getting pummeled during wind testing.

Source: iKamper, Kickstarter

1 comment
Bob Flint
With that kind of wind and temperature, I think most people would sleep in the vehicle, and start it once and a while for heat...