Inflatable RV

RVs come in all sizes, from 40' bus to towable pop-up. But what about inflatable in a trunk in the back of a minivan?

Setting up and tearing down tented campsites is a pain, and there are instant-setup tents and even some inflatable tents. But what about a super-duper inflatable tent, designed for car-camping.

In the cabin-tent structure with high-pressure frame would also be (at lower pressure) one or more built in airbeds (that you leave the bedding on), an inflatable couch or chairs, wiring for LED or fluorescent lights in the roof with switches, 12v power jacks etc. On the outside might be an inflatable sink with 12v pump and drain hose and outside inflatable chairs. There would be an "air pressure bus" with quick-connects and turnable valves for each component. Inflation would be pushbutton, deflation might require turning values as you deflate components but still simple. Once deflated, the whole thing -- components, bedding and all -- would roll up and fit into a trunk or large suitcase that would fit in the back of a minivan or SUV. It would not be designed to be small or light like most tents.

It could also be designed to sit in a hitch holder, along with a bike rack. Add a portable toilet, camp stove, ice chest and folding tables (inflatables are not solid enough.) Ideally wire a special jack into the van battery, and replace the van battery with a marine battery (deep cycle and starting).

The goal: open the crate, open the valves and start the compressor. In a few minutes, a living space is erect. If needed, put in weights or stake it down. In the morning, start the vacuum on the internal components, then turn the valves to drain the support members, roll it up, bedding and all, and go.

I believe this could easily sell for $1,000 or more. It would be almost as easy as a pop-up camper, but best of all you would not be towing something. It would pay for itself for families on a cross country road trip pretty quickly. The key is to not think of it as a tent but as an RV.


Inflatable RV piggy back. Cool concept. Holes and other damage might build up fast giving these things short lives, or a lot of repairs? How about military grade titanium ribbed sheet metal fold out jigsaw puzzle pieces? Aluminum or tough plastic panels? Allthough the heavy duty rubber & canvas inflatable rafts & outboard rafts are gravel & sand tough? Maybe you're onto something.

The best & biggest pro camper org and legal lobbyist is Good Sam. I recomend all join. Also go to your State Highway Patrol and recquest a xerox of the page & a half on "House Car" law. This proves you have house rights in your camper. Open alcohol, loaded gun, nudity, bathroom & bedroom use, etc. So long as you keep the curtains drawn & don't break other laws like drunk driving. It is a house. I helped save the big & old vehicle rights in Redwood City when City council tried to outlaw them & make us pay rent to their parking lots $1,200. per year.

If you go to the Cow Palace Camper & Boat show, as well as other resources, there are amphibious RVs that can be driven on to the water as a house boat. You shift from the wheels to a propeler shaft. No more bridge toll. Lots of short cuts ahoy. The Who, "Watch the Police & the Tax Man miss me I'm Mobile!!!" Boat licenses are recquired on most waters.

There are also "car top" tents that are interesting. See:

There are also tents that hang off the back of a pickup truck or van:


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