Adding a Pop up top to a 13' scamp - Fiberglass RV


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Old 03-10-2008, 02:19 PM   #1
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I'm a 6'3" guy in a Scamp with a 6'1" interior height. I spent 5 years driving a VW Westy and that pop top was a wonderful thing. Where can I purchase an after market poptop add-on for my 1976 13' Scamp. There has got to be one out there somewhere. Anyone done this? Any structural implications? I'd like to go as large as possible.
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Old 03-10-2008, 03:09 PM   #2
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I've never seen an aftermarket top made for a Scamp, doesn't mean they don't exisit...I've just never seen one.

However, a Scamp sold on eBay a while back, where someone had cut the raised portion of the roof off, raised it and refiberglassed. Sorta looked like the Havasu but uglier (my opinion) Kinda looked like a box on top. If you really were looking to raise the roof, that's the way I'd do it...only hopefully it would look better! Then add enough strength back into it for A/C, etc.

Check out the Havasu here: Havasu Album
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Old 03-10-2008, 03:17 PM   #3
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I thought about that approach but am hoping to find something like the poptop on the Samba in the photo below. I'll find something that will work eventually I'm sure. I've got a few ideas cooking. I talked to the guys at Scamp about it and they classified my idea as "crazy". Heh.....good thing I didn't mention my surround sound with ipod connection and flip down flat screen idea.
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Old 03-10-2008, 03:20 PM   #4
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Well, plenty of poptop molded lightweight fiberglass RVs here! Maybe one of the Compact/Hunter gang can give you some pointers.
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Old 03-10-2008, 03:23 PM   #5
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Well, plenty of poptop molded lightweight fiberglass RVs here! Maybe one of the Compact/Hunter gang can give you some pointers.
Bingo...looked at the photo albums and thats exactly what I'm talking about. Again...thanks!
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Old 03-11-2008, 07:03 AM   #6
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If you wanted to go deluxe, here's a link to someone who added a pop-top to his van. He was able to buy the whole mechanism complete:
http://www.geocities.com/vwcamper72/Riviera1.html

Here's someone who's selling a the pop top and mechanism. The add was updated in February, so who knows if it's still available. But it shows they're out there.
http://www.thesamba.com/vw/classifie....php?id=532237

My sense from glancing through some of the sites is that the top has to be really fastened down securely. Apparent wind speed from traveling down the road can really grab these suckers. (There was at least one recall on VWs where the tops opened unexpectedly while driving! YOWSER!)
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Old 03-11-2008, 09:08 AM   #7
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Quick Jonathan, the Samba one is in New Mexico and the owner won't ship it!
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Old 03-11-2008, 09:57 AM   #8
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Quick Jonathan, the Samba one is in New Mexico and the owner won't ship it!
I noticed that, however it is much larger than I need. That one is a full top from a 74-?? westy. I'm looking of a smaller top. I may look at making one from a skylight. Its no huge rush...just a place my mind goes when I am laying in bed in my "pod" and the gears start turning. I'm thinking something in the range of 2'x2' or 3'x3'. Heh...a cheaper solution would be a stool that I could sit on while making coffee or washing the cup.
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Old 03-11-2008, 10:11 AM   #9
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>>a cheaper solution would be a stool that I could sit on while making coffee or washing the cup.

Now you're cooking with gas!
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Old 03-11-2008, 10:22 AM   #10
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Mike Watters put a bit of dome on his PlayPac that's about that size. You can just see a bit of in the photo.

Exterior shot of Mike's PlayPac

Of course it doesn't open but the idea of part of a head peeking just above the roof line sort of makes me laugh.

Of course, you might look a little like a hamster in one of those balls!

Better stick with your idea. Mine are just getting silly.
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Old 03-11-2008, 10:25 AM   #11
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Mike Watters put a bit of dome on his PlayPac that's about that size. You can just see a bit of in the photo.

Exterior shot of Mike's PlayPac

Of course it doesn't open but the idea of part of a head peeking just above the roof line sort of makes me laugh.

Of course, you might look a little like a hamster in one of those balls!

Better stick with your idea. Mine are just getting silly.
See...I like that idea. Especially seeing a head sticking up wearing a pair of groucho glasses like yours.
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Old 03-11-2008, 10:55 AM   #12
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See...I like that idea. Especially seeing a head sticking up wearing a pair of groucho glasses like yours.
While it might be a little cost prohibitive cannibalizing a split westy for its' pop up section, you might want to consider a Vanagon Country Homes model f/g pop section to retrofit. They're a lot easier to find in the scrapyards, and as long as the fiberglass and pop up mechanism are solid, the canvas and screen should be the easy part if they need repair/replacement. All things considered, it should be a relatively straightforward project.

http://www.countryhomescampers.com/graphic...d%20_Awning.jpg
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Old 03-12-2008, 10:28 AM   #13
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I can't take credit for that dome-top. It's a standard PlayPac feature.

Upsides: More light during the day and j-u-s-t enough added headroom that it let me stand up straight if I stood in just the right place.

Downsides: Requires extensive attention or else it leaks like crazy! Mine came with half a dozen layers of various gunk layered into the seam trying to stop it. It's also hard to fit a shade onto. To put it simply: I'm not a morning person. Having all that extra, unobstructed light streaming in in the morning wasn't all that welcome.

Similar domes are fairly easily available (here's a really big one):

The main problem you'd have is getting it to fit on the non-flat roof correctly. You'd presumably run it down the center of the trailer to give room in the aisle.

Another - much more intensive - solution would be to crack the trailer apart at the seam - add 6 inches or so into the gap - then put it back together again. Not something that could remotely be called a 'small upgrade', but gives you headroom everywhere. Course, it'll also screw up the side closet fit (not THAT hard to deal with) and the fit of the door (PITA problem).

I suppose a sort of combination of the two is possible too. slicing off the center bulge, adding a spacer and reattaching. Just as big a hassle as doing it at the seam - but you don't have the extra problems (closet & door).

Course - I don't personally think that having tons of headroom is all that important. 95%+ of the time in the trailer is spent either laying down or sitting. I don't cook in the trailer (prefer doing that outside) and we're not dancing in the trailer either.

The ceiling height on the cargo conversion I'm supposed to be working on is REALLY low (something like 4.5 - 5 feet inside). I briefly toyed with the idea of adding a dome onto the top for standing room then decided not to bother. My little fiberglass cargo trailer has a flat roof too - so it would be relatively simple. I just decided that when all was said and done, it wasn't that important to me. It's tall enough (barely) that I can move around on my feet (beats a teardrop in that regard) and the extra height wouldn't be used that much.

The biggest appeal of the pop-tops IMHO is not so much the headroom - but the idea that you could replace the fabric sides with nylon window screen material for the ultimate roof vent. That would be my primary reason for considering such a thing.

Mike
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Old 03-12-2008, 10:40 AM   #14
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I'm a 6'3" guy in a Scamp with a 6'1" interior height. I spent 5 years driving a VW Westy and that pop top was a wonderful thing. Where can I purchase an after market poptop add-on for my 1976 13' Scamp. There has got to be one out there somewhere. Anyone done this? Any structural implications? I'd like to go as large as possible.
You need to think ERIBA PUCK!

These sites should inspire you!

http://groups.msn.com/EribaOwnersPho...ictures?Page=6
http://www.eriba-amiga.co.uk/index.html

Cheers
Mike
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