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Hey all,

My name is Graeme and I am one of the founders at Go Fast Campers. We are building ultralight, super strong, american made canopy campers up in Bozeman Montana. We got featured on a few pretty significant blogs lately that drove traffic to our site, and I had a bunch of requests for building product for Honda Ridgelines. To be totally honest, I was a little surprised. But I did a little research, and there is virtually no aftermarket for these things which is a bummer.

So a real quick background on what we are doing. The Go Fast Camper Platform is a canopy camper that basically combines a rooftop tent and a topper. It enables you to have standing room in the back of your truck bed, be able to get into bed without climbing a ladder, and still maintains the functionality of your vehicle. Here's a photo of our render so you know what it looks like, we are still finalizing our production prototype but should have it done in the next few days...



And there is a ton more info on our site, www.gofastcampers.com

In order to support a vehicle, we need 5 customers. I am always looking for vehicles to support, and thought this might be a good place to gauge interest for Ridgeline owners. Would love to hear what you guys think, and if it is something you would want for your trucks.

Best,

-graeme
 

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I have a deposit down currently for an A.R.E. Z-series topper for my RL but this is intriguing for sure.

Questions:
- Is it designed to function as a normal topper when not being used for camping? I.e., will there be a lockable hinged door on the back above the tailgate?
- Will the sides have to be canvas or could they retain a more traditional solid-surface look on the side?
- You have some good CAD animation but I would be interested to see more - for example how people actually go from regular topper to camper layout. How is it opened, closed, secured, etc.

Cool idea! I think if the build quality is excellent and it's easily used, you could have a hit on your hands. I'm sure a lot of RL owners would want one.
 
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Discussion Starter #3
Questions:
- Is it designed to function as a normal topper when not being used for camping? I.e., will there be a lockable hinged door on the back above the tailgate?
- Will the sides have to be canvas or could they retain a more traditional solid-surface look on the side?
- You have some good CAD animation but I would be interested to see more - for example how people actually go from regular topper to camper layout. How is it opened, closed, secured, etc.

1) Yup, its completely functional as a traditional topper when not in use for camping. Lockable hinged rear and side doors.

2) We will offer the system with operable aluminum sides, so they will be on struts and hinge up. Finishing the production prototype in the next two weeks, just launched the sight with renderings in october after testing our prototype.

3) We will have all of that really soon once we have the initial production unit complete. It opens really simply, a couple of latches and a grab handle. Sets up in like 5 seconds, closes in not much longer. To go from topper to camper you just pop the top.
 

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2017 Ridgeline RTL-E, Northeast U.S.
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I don't know how much you know about the Ridgeline, but the bed has no clamping points on its own. There are three bolts on each side, T 30s as I recall. You can also convert the four upper tie-downs in the corners. Those are dual T 50s for each tie-down. The Ridgeline has eight tie-downs, four upper and four lower. Beyond that there's nothing to attach to, not even a basic rail system attached to the plastic bed, like Toyota and Nissan have.

The company that owns BAK, Extang, Retrax, Truxedo, UnderCover, A.R.E. and several others has created a set of universal rails for the Ridgeline. All its various companies use this as an attach point for their tonneaus and caps etc. I keep meaning to check whether BAK or Extang will sell those rails separately. They are essentially perfectly straight.

About your design: it looks really cool. My wife has informed me on several occasions that we do NOT camp. Although I grew up camping, I think it's a nonstarter for me unfortunately. I do think there are plenty of Ridgeline owners who would be very interested in this. We have plenty of guys who go fishing and hunting. From the picture it looks like it might be a little short in terms of legroom. What does the sleeping area measure and does have a thin mattress or something? Finally, do you have a ballpark price range yet?
 
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Finally, do you have a ballpark price range yet?
I had to dig for the price but it says....
GFC said:
The Pre-Order reserves your spot in line for the ultralight Platform camper, starting at $5000 shipped.
That's a deal breaker for quite a few I'd expect, definitely for me anyway. At $2000 I'd be all in. Very cool rig though.
 

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Discussion Starter #8 (Edited)
phineas said:
From the picture it looks like it might be a little short in terms of legroom. What does the sleeping area measure and does have a thin mattress or something? Finally, do you have a ballpark price range yet?
Appreciate the kind words.

Sleeping area is 50" wide and 90" long. Plenty of room for folks in the 6'6" range. Mattress is 3" thick. Pricepoint is $5000 shipped for the topper and camper combo.


That's a deal breaker for quite a few I'd expect, definitely for me anyway. At $2000 I'd be all in. Very cool rig though.
At $2000, I think you might be hard pressed to find a color matched topper to be honest.

The nearest thing to what we are building is the AT habitat which is easily double our retail price.

Plus, we built these things to last. Every component is made in the united states, and each part is serviceable or replaceable without buying a completely new system. We use tons of billet machined components, as an example, here are the hinges from our first gen prototype...



The lower frame is made from 1.5" .065 DOM round tube, CNC mitered, mig welded and powder coated. The aluminum frame is 6061 T6 Billet Extrusion attached to machined corners. The roof and floor panels are honeycomb composite materials that will not rot. The foam in the bed is mattress grade, and all the sewing is done in house, not outsourced. Just want to show that this isn't something we manufacture for 1/10th the retail cost. Its a seriously nice piece of gear.
 

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Didn't mean to insult the product, it looks to be of high quality and utility, just too rich for my blood. I'm glad you are considering making it for the RL and I wish you best of success with it!
 

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You can't even get an A.R.E. topper for the G2 RL for $2,000. The fact that this is developed they way it is, to be a topper and a camper in one adds a ton of value, IMO. $5,000 might be on the high side, but if it's truly well-built (fit and finish need to be perfect, not just close) it's probably worth the $5k.

Interested to see if you move forward on this with a fully functional prototype.
 
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You can't even get an A.R.E. topper for the G2 RL for $2,000. The fact that this is developed they way it is, to be a topper and a camper in one adds a ton of value, IMO. $5,000 might be on the high side, but if it's truly well-built (fit and finish need to be perfect, not just close) it's probably worth the $5k.

Interested to see if you move forward on this with a fully functional prototype.
I just bought a Leer topper for $2290 installed with headliner, removable front window with sliding panel, automatic interior led light, and auto locking matched to RL locking system.
 

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I just bought a Leer topper for $23 and change installed with headliner, removable front window with sliding panel, automatic interior led light, and auto locking matched to RL locking system.
$23? That's a great price.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Didn't mean to insult the product, it looks to be of high quality and utility, just too rich for my blood. I'm glad you are considering making it for the RL and I wish you best of success with it!
Sorry if I came off a little too defensive! Just want to show how much work is going into this product.

You can't even get an A.R.E. topper for the G2 RL for $2,000. The fact that this is developed they way it is, to be a topper and a camper in one adds a ton of value, IMO. $5,000 might be on the high side, but if it's truly well-built (fit and finish need to be perfect, not just close) it's probably worth the $5k.

Interested to see if you move forward on this with a fully functional prototype
We will have our tacoma version fully kitted out by the end of the week, will definitely post photos and a walkaround video.

Can the roof be used as a lumber rack or add a basket? If so, what is the weight limit?
Yes, it will need cross bars (we make the mounting system as an accessory) or our full length roofrack to carry a load well. If only being used as a rack (not lifting the roof) it can carry a 500 pound payload. When popping the top with a load on the roof, it can carry 75-100 pounds.
 

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Hey all,

My name is Graeme and I am one of the founders at Go Fast Campers. We are building ultralight, super strong, american made canopy campers up in Bozeman Montana. We got featured on a few pretty significant blogs lately that drove traffic to our site, and I had a bunch of requests for building product for Honda Ridgelines. To be totally honest, I was a little surprised. But I did a little research, and there is virtually no aftermarket for these things which is a bummer.

So a real quick background on what we are doing. The Go Fast Camper Platform is a canopy camper that basically combines a rooftop tent and a topper. It enables you to have standing room in the back of your truck bed, be able to get into bed without climbing a ladder, and still maintains the functionality of your vehicle. Here's a photo of our render so you know what it looks like, we are still finalizing our production prototype but should have it done in the next few days...



And there is a ton more info on our site, www.gofastcampers.com

In order to support a vehicle, we need 5 customers. I am always looking for vehicles to support, and thought this might be a good place to gauge interest for Ridgeline owners. Would love to hear what you guys think, and if it is something you would want for your trucks.

Best,

-graeme
Hi Graeme @GFC,

Have you received 5 orders from gen2 Honda Ridgeline owners in order to commence a build for this vehicle? Though not yet an Owner, I'd predicate owning a RL if I could buy a complete GFC that would fit. Kinda like a cart before the horse....
 

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The idea is interesting enough that I took some time to look at your website and think about it. I like all the usable space under the sleeping platform.

I guess you don't have any of these on the market yet for any vehicle? All the pictures were Tacomas and you said that is not even ready yet.

Drawbacks for me: 1. The box is really ugly. Maybe that's just the artwork and not the final design, I don't know. I usually care more about function than form, after all, I owned a G1 Ridgeline for 11 years, probably about the ugliest truck ever made, but this thing looks bad and I know most people are more concerned than I am with how a vehicle looks.

2. I went with a Diamondback cover on my G2 because I didn't like the lack of visibility in the shell I had on my G1, even with windows on the sides. My G2 has the back-up camera and blind spot warnings, but I still don't think I'd get a shell without windows on the sides.

3. I don't think my wife and I could sleep much on a 50" wide mattress (10" narrower than a queen), and it's rather expensive for something to have just as a convenience if we wanted to sleep in it on rare occasions, especially since the $5,000 is just the starting price and it may be $500-$1000 on top of that to equip it to use as a roof rack also.

4. I think the climb in & out of it would get tiresome fast.

5. I'd need to know if it absolutely doesn't allow water into the bed (doubtful, since no product seems to succeed at that yet).

6. I'd need to know that it's designed to withstand nearly hurricane-force winds when down so it doesn't get torn-off in over 110 m.p.h. winds, and even less strong winds combined with 75 or 80 m.p.h. on the highway could be a problem as it looks like there is plenty of room for wind to get under it and lift.

7. It may only be 6" thick but I'd still like the front end to be aerodynamic.

But if you get some built I'd like to learn more. Still think the very narrow bed would be a deal-breaker at that price.
 

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This might be exactly what I need when the economy collapses and my wife dies from Corona virus and the zombies take my property.
 
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