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I'm camping several times this summer and Im looking for something comfortable to sleep on. Since I have a wife and two little kids I need something for all of us or something inexpensive for each of us. Ive heard air mattresses can be uncomfortable and hard on the back. Im leaning towards a pad but im curious of what is available.
 

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ir mattress is the way to go. Go to Walmart. They are like 20 bucks for a decent one.
 

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concussed
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comfort costs money...
what i did years ago was go to a surplus store and have 3"foam cut to the size i wanted.lasts forever,dont leak.storage is a hassle tho.
 

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I used to do the air mattress thing. loved it, but had to patch it about every other trip, last one I patched 3x in the same weekend (no obvious rocks/twigs below that I could find).

I ended up going to one of those 3" self 'inflating' pads and couldn't be happier. I was really surprised at how comfortable they are, I didn't bottom out and I'm not a small guy. I won't be going back any time soon. Quick to setup, reliable, comfortable.. but not cheap.
 

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X2, the 2-3" self inflating pads are the easiest and most comfortable thing i have slept on in the woods.
 

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ir mattress is the way to go. Go to Walmart. They are like 20 bucks for a decent one.

X2...I bought the Ozark twin for like $10 at least if it leaks you only spent $10.

Or go to Ikea on their "as-is" section and look for those "Poang" seat cushions they can be rolled up for storage and make a good pad for sleeping on...
 

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Air mattresses are great for comfort, but they don't last long before you have to fill them up every night. Foam is definitely more durable.

That being said, we just keep replacing our two air mattresses after they spring a leak.....
 

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neither, buy yourself a good cot

never have to worry about rocks or sticks on the ground...
 

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Air mattresses are for indoors. Just more cheap Chinese crap, inevitably. One or two trips, and they will have too many pinholes to bother patching, and you'll have wasted between 10$ and 30$, and eventually if it keeps up, by the end of summer you'll have wasted between 50$ and 150$ on cheap junk that won't hold air.

You'll also find that you'll be too cold when it's cold out (the ground is warmer, you'll freeze on the air mattress just like bridges freeze before any other part of the road), and they do not breath, so at best you'll be damp by morning, at worst you'll be cold and soaked. I will never use an air mattress for camping again.

Cots are great if you have the space to store them, and can justify the weight. Find the ones that don't squeak every time you move, and you'll be ok. I like cots since you can stash your gear under them, rather than leaving it in the truck or trying to fit it in the tent next to you.

The best, lightest, smallest solution is self-inflating pads. The bags I have even have loops on the side, so you can strap the pad under the bag...not that I've ever used them...but could if I felt like getting some webbing.

All this BS on an extended trip with many different campsites is why people want rooftop tents :p.

-Sean
 

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STITCH - Come and Take it!
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what's a matress????? :p
 

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comfort costs money...
what i did years ago was go to a surplus store and have 3"foam cut to the size i wanted.lasts forever,dont leak.storage is a hassle tho.
word. I've been using the green high-density foam from a fabric store. it's not cheap stuff but you'll never look back. you only need 3" max. if you're lighter - 150-170ish - 2" will prolly work fine.

put it this way - it's like having a tempurpedic for camping.
 

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Air mattresses are for indoors. Just more cheap Chinese crap, inevitably. One or two trips, and they will have too many pinholes to bother patching, and you'll have wasted between 10$ and 30$, and eventually if it keeps up, by the end of summer you'll have wasted between 50$ and 150$ on cheap junk that won't hold air.
-Sean
In addition to being flimsy, the air mattresses are a perfectly designed scam to get you back in the door of WalMart over and over and over again. Sure, they're cheap....appealingly so. But then you need the accessories to go with them. I bought a queen size air mattress last summer ("Coleman" brand chinese crap) and purchased the accessory hand pump. It sucked. It was very tedious to pump the thing up.
Went back to WalMart and exchanged it for the other "Coleman" accessory pump to plug into my cig lighter. Ended up camping far from the truck, so that was no good. Camped on the hard ground that night.
Went back to WalMart, bought the battery powered pump, installed like 6 "D" cell batteries, used it once, and now the batteries are dead. When I had friends staying the night from out of town, I had to go back to WalMart for more "D" cells because I didn't have the other accessory pump that plugs into household current.
I haven't been back to WalMart since, and I won't go back. All this hassle for a disposable piece of garbage manufactured overseas. I find WalMart disgusting for many, many reasons, but this diabolical scam took the cake.

I went to my locally owned Jax Outdoor and bought a TrailRidge closed cell pack mattress (aka "self inflating") manufactured in the US. (although in all fairness, the stuff sack included with it was made in China:D)
 

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RTT! roof top tent. the only way to go.


but it might be a bit snug with a wife and kids
 

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In addition to being flimsy, the air mattresses are a perfectly designed scam to get you back in the door of WalMart over and over and over again. Sure, they're cheap....appealingly so. But then you need the accessories to go with them. I bought a queen size air mattress last summer ("Coleman" brand chinese crap) and purchased the accessory hand pump. It sucked. It was very tedious to pump the thing up.
Went back to WalMart and exchanged it for the other "Coleman" accessory pump to plug into my cig lighter. Ended up camping far from the truck, so that was no good. Camped on the hard ground that night.
Went back to WalMart, bought the battery powered pump, installed like 6 "D" cell batteries, used it once, and now the batteries are dead. When I had friends staying the night from out of town, I had to go back to WalMart for more "D" cells because I didn't have the other accessory pump that plugs into household current.
I haven't been back to WalMart since, and I won't go back. All this hassle for a disposable piece of garbage manufactured overseas. I find WalMart disgusting for many, many reasons, but this diabolical scam took the cake.

I went to my locally owned Jax Outdoor and bought a TrailRidge closed cell pack mattress (aka "self inflating") manufactured in the US. (although in all fairness, the stuff sack included with it was made in China:D)
4 'D' batteries...:D my batteries lasted 2 years... and only died because the switch got bumped and it ran overnite (WHAT IS THAT SOUND? :cool:)... the air mattress died also after 2 years & 2 trips... not bad for $25... I'll replace with same because it really did work fine for me...compact storage..very comfortable for me (two singles stacked on top of each other-quickbed thingy). I'll agree on the cold transfer, but when it was that cold anyways, an extra sleeping bag as a blanket under, and a couple of blankets on top and all was warm! (you do bring extra bedding in cold conditions, right?) Walmart has it's issues... good pricing and they STOCK things that very few other local places here do.
 

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Ditch the wife and kids!:D
Yup...girlfriends are usually smaller than wives anyway :lmao:.

Walmart has it's issues... good pricing and they STOCK things that very few other local places here do.
Dude...you live in California...what on earth would you need to go to Walmart to get, that you can't get a better one somewhere else? For 25 bucks, you can probably get a pair of hookers to keep you warm and comfortable. Just don't catch swine flu or something :rofl:.
 

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concussed
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Yup...girlfriends are usually smaller than wives anyway :lmao:.

Dude...you live in California...what on earth would you need to go to Walmart to get, that you can't get a better one somewhere else? For 25 bucks, you can probably get a pair of hookers to keep you warm and comfortable. Just don't catch swine flu or something :rofl:.
25$ for a pair of hookers??!! what kind of skanks are you renting?eeewww..
 

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well the rtt is absolutely a future dream for me! Untill then my wife and I use the only remnant of my bachelorhood: a futon mattres! It's not the lightest, but it rolls up semi-ok, and it fits in the back of a 6ft tacoma bed PERFECTLY! I have a very simple bed platform (2x10 on their sides with a plywood deck) and then I put a piece of regular old house carpet that my friend had left over, and slid that ole mattress in on top - like a glove! Plus the futon mattres even has a zip-off cover, and chances are you all have a buddy who's trying to get rid of one - now that's cheap!
 
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