Oztent RV2 (Drifta Pimped) Review

img_1248I had seen the Oztent RV out and about on our travels over the last few years and was alaways impressed with the design and versatility of this tent.  After upgrading our camping setup with a Drifta DOT6 Camping Trailer  we had the requirement for an additional bedroom or as Sarah put it a ‘Girl Snug’.  We had seen other DOT owners using an Oztent against the side of the DOT trailer for additional sleeping space so this seemed the ideal solution for us.

We had a look around as to where we could source an Oztent from and then Drifta put together a video which included the add on Drifta components for an Oztent setup and they provide the base Oztent at a very competitive price.  This sold it for me and decided to get in touch with Drifta and source our RV2 from them.

What did we go for in our ‘ Drifta Pimped’ package?  We went for the base Oztent RV2, 2 side walls, front wall, flysheet and already had the C Gear matting which we intended to use with the Oztent.  In addition the Drifta components included replacing the awning poles with Supapeg Poles (in a Drifta Canvas Bag), a set of SnowPeak Pegs (In a Drifta Bootliner Bag) and a Drifta Oztent RV2 Canvas Bag to keep it all in.  The canvas bag is larger than the standard bag so currently I have all but the walls in (didn’t bring the walls on the current trip).

We carry the Oztent in our Rhino roof cage strapped down with some Drifta Straps which makes it easy to carry and unclip off when needed.

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The plan was to use the Oztent with the DOT trailer when we stayed for a longer time in one place and when we had guests joining us on the trip.  What we did not realise is that we would spend so much time in it during our Tasmania trip as the Land Rover had broken down and we had no way to tow the trailer so the Oztent came off and away we went continuing with our trip in a friend’s Freelander.  This gave us a good amount of time to test the setup and use of the RV2 without the trailer.

Setup – Setting up the RV2 as a basic tent is of course very easy.  We lay out the C Gear Matting, push up the brackets inside the RV 2, 5 pegs and essentially it is up.  So yes, it truely is a 60 second tent.  However when it comes to then setting up the flysheet (which we now leave attached) and the awning the setup of course takes a bit longer.  What it does mean is while I am off pegging the fly and awning out Sarah is busy getting the sleeping gear in and sorted and unpacking the car with somewhere dry to put stuff within 60 seconds.  The Snowpeak pegs from Drifta make setting the RV up on any ground a dream as we can peg through pretty much everything.  We have the Snowpeak copper headed hammer that reduces the vibration when hammering and a great hook on the back for extracting the pegs.  We have put together a time lapse video of one of our Recent setup.

Storage/Carrying – Yes, the RV is long and yes it can be carried in the car if you have a long enough one but really the simple and easy solution is to strap it to the roof.  On the Land Rover D3 we have a Rhino Rack cage it fits in perfectly and when we had the Freelander we just strapped it to the two roof bars.  This is by far the easiest way to carry it and having it all contained in the Drifta canvas bag makes it really easy.  We have been on lots of dusty tracks and had some very wet weather and I was really impressed with how the Drifta bag kept all the elements out and the RV2 inside clean and dry.  Not sure how this compares to the standard Oztent bag but I know I would not have been able to fit everything in the standard bag.

Wet Weather – The RV2 holds up very well in wet and windy weather.  That said I have always put the awning out and the flysheet on.  The flysheet keeps the tent dry and creates a great storage area for your camping gear including our fridge which was kept dry.  The awning with the Drifta pole setup gives a really good pitch to the roof and the spreader bars that come in the Drifta kit spread the canvas out tight with little claws on the feet that clip to the tent pole sprigot.  I wish now I had brought the side walls on this trip for the awning as of course with wind and rain the rain comes in from the side.  Of course we hadn’t planned to be using the Oztent without the Camping Trailer!

Space – We love the space in the RV2.  With two of us sleeping we have room for our bags and a bit more space so no issue here.  There are enough pockets for storage and a handy electric hook up feed in through a little corner zip.  The space in the awning is also good and gives a good dry space enough for preparing food, cooking and eating etc.  Suspect you could squeeze in a 3rd person if need be but it’s certainly moe than enough for 2 of us.

Trailer Setup – Eventually after getting the Land Rover back on the road and heading into Victoria we had the opportunity to try the Oztent with the Drifta DOT6 camping trailer.  We had a friend coming to stay with us so was a good time to try.  The RV2 is the perfect side to fit along the rooftop tent flysheet and this time we used it without the Oztent awning as that would have taken up too much space.  We had 60km/hr winds and the whole setup worked well and i managed to join the Drifta Walls onto the Oztent to keep the wind out.

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In conclusion the RV2 absolutely meets our requirements but is certainly enhanced with the Drifta add ons making things even better and can be all sourced from the one supplier.  We love the RV2 and would certainly go for it again with the same requirements we have.  Condensation would be an issue without the Flysheet and indeed you still need to leave a bit of ventilation in the tent to ensure it remains dry inside.  A few people have mentioned the corner bracket design not being great, only time will tell and with the guys out in front the strain is taken off these corners so should not be an issue.  With the winds we have had and without the awning or guys out the front all seems to be holding up well.

Richard.

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