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Discussion Starter #1
I'm trying to decide on what cot to buy. I'm looking at Go Kot, but really hate the price.


https://campingcot.com/home


Looking for easy/fast set up, comfort, light weight and packs small. In that order of importance.
It would be nice if it could be set up while in a small tent out of rain and mud.
Does anyone have any suggestions on a great camping cot.
 

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https://www.camptime.com/

https://www.helinox.com.au/camp-stretchers/cot-one

first one is the bomber cot made in America last forever, mine was purchased some where in mid 90's used a ton and still like new except for a few scratches on the legs. the roll a cot is the bomb on Grand Canyon trips as it gets you up off the sand away from a lot of the crawlie critters and on hot nights I sleep close to the water and some height for rising tides.

Second one is the quality cot I now use when camping in small tents
Made in Australia sold here by big agnes I believe

Several copies of the helinox on the market that my guess is will not last like the helinox units. my helinox cot and sunset chair go on a lot of canoe trips and light weight raft trips. The helinox is just as comfy as the camptime, just lower to the ground.

with all broken bones (healed but not in the line up originally as the Great Spirit intended) the camp time AKA roll a cot is much easier to get up from than the helinox. But the helinox works in a back packing tent.
 

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Follow up on both cots.

Experiment at home to find out the best way to assemble these cots. Roll A Cot has a really good video.

Helinox has a print out and there are videos. Helinox goes together pretty fast but is not as easy as the Roll A Cot. I did not read the instructions first but after doing my thing did go back to read. Now my helinox goes together fast. Disassembly of the helinox is another thing. The helinox has a really good locking system. There is a key to unlocking the legs from the rail sections and for me, it took the helinox instructions to really get the technique down. Now, I can unlock the helinox fast. The helinox can be put together in a backpacking tent. One person size tents are really too small based on my experience, two person backpacking style tents the process is much easier. My experience is to do the assembly or take down outside the tent.

Recently I see several helinox copy cats for sale, a lot cheaper than helinox. I distrust these copy cats. They look similar to the real deal, but my bet is the durability is not there.

Probably more than anyone wants to know. Both cots have made my camp trips a ton more comfortable.
 

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Bummed that Big Agnes stopped carrying Helinox. Definitely wanted to pick up a cot, but they were always out of stock on the tall person model.
 

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As a family, we have both styles. I see the advantage of the "backpacking friendly" cot but when backpacking I use my 4" BA inflatable pad so there really isn't a need for the cot.

On the river I have my big dude roll-a-cot paired up with a Jack's Silverback pad and I will never go back to anything else. It's really nice to be up off the ground and swing your legs around like a regular bed in the mornings, especially when you spent the previous day combat rowing into hellacious winds while everyone else lounged around :)

I got mine as a scratch and dent directly from the camp-time website and saved a ton of money.
https://www.camptime.com/collections/brand-new-blemished-bargains

They have all three sizes for sale right now in the blemished section.
 

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Take a look at the REI cot. It's only $80 and with their regular 20% coupon, you can get it for $64. It's steel, not aluminum so it weighs about 7 lbs more than roll-a-cot and it does not dry as fast. However, in terms of setup time, nothing sets up as fast. I can set this up in 30 seconds if need be. Had mine for 5 years and despite a tiny bit of rust in a couple of spots, still in great shape. It's taller than camptime is as well - that can be both good and bad. I can store tons of stuff underneath it, but if your tent is low, that could pose issues.

https://www.rei.com/product/828505/rei-co-op-camp-folding-cot
 

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Discussion Starter #8
I bought one of these on sale @ REI and can return if not happy.


https://www.rei.com/product/889599/helinox-cot-lite


$150 and under 3#'s. I sleep in a two
man tent that is not tall, only 44", which limits some of the choices.
I will report back rather happy or not.


Thanks for all the suggestions
 

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I have one of the Go-Kot style cots. They're great when weight and bulk are an issue. But the way that the legs turn inward, they can be tippy. Get the Roll a Cot. They're pretty nice and relatively light weight for a full size/full height cot.
 

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Bighorn:

Good choice. If you use a backpacking tent it is hard to estimate the tent dimensions at the height off the floor the tent will be. I have heard that the Roll A Cot is the best all around, including consideration for price, but is high enough off the ground that your tent's tapered ends or sides might mean it won;t fit. I have a huge, 10 year old REI cot that they don't make anymore and it only fits in my 4 person tent.

Enjoy.
 

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Roll a cots are nice, but they are made of wood, and wood rots when wet, which I found out on day 2 of a Deso trip.



Bought one of these
https://smile.amazon.com/gp/product/B001LF3G7M/ref=oh_aui_search_asin_title?ie=UTF8&psc=1


$50 bucks, easy to set up, very comfortable and packs small. Built like a brick s%^&*house, bomber sturdy, the caveat being that you need to place it on a reasonably hard surface, as like any cot it'll sink in the sand. Not as bad as a roll a cot, but still. The polyester fabric drys fast too.



I bought one of these
https://smile.amazon.com/gp/product/B00J972O8Q/ref=oh_aui_search_asin_title?ie=UTF8&psc=1


Oh so comfortable on top of anything, I carry Paco Pads, nice thick ones, and still take this, rolls up to a 3inch x 6 inch roll so takes up no room at all. Is likely more comfortable than your bed at home..
 

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Roll-a-cots are not made of wood and they do not rot. I have one I bought in the mid 90’s that is still going on rivers as a loaner. Last year I purchased the wide version for my Exped Mega Mat—pretty plush and it fits in my 3-person tent very well if it rains. I prefer not sleeping in tents, but that’s another story.

Air mats tend to slid a bit to one side because the cot sags slightly, my solution will be to attach a couple of strips of 3m Velcro to both the cot and the pad—that’s my only pet peeve.
 

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Avoid Moon Lence!

Well, here's one you can drop off the list: Moon Lence Camping Cot. Got three for a GC trip. Bought three for a GC trip. If you're checking Amazon, read the 1-star reviews, one of which is mine. These things would not stay upright in any lose ground (e.g., sand) or any ground with any sort of incline whatsoever. Out of our 18 nights (some of which I spent on the boat, in all fairness--but that meant carrying my table up and down twice per day), I spent maybe two nights off the ground. Avoid, avoid, avoid.
 

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Get a Roll-A-Cot. THEY ARE MADE OF ALUMINUM. No wood is used in the construction of a roll-a-cot. I have 3 and they don’t rot or rust. I recommend the mesh version over the cordura version with the pocket for your sleeping pad. Sand falls through the mesh, mesh dries quickly when wet, and the pocket is a useless gimmick.

I used to be dead set against cots. But thanks to the Buzz I saw the light about cots. The big reason for the change of heart is cots allow you to sleep in places you can’t with a sleeping pad. On rivers, it seems like there are limited flat spots to set up a tent and sleeping pad. I have slept without a tent or under my tarp many times on rocky ground, or sloping ground thanks to my cot. On rocks, the cot puts you above them. On a slope, by putting 2 rocks under the downhill legs, you can level the cot. The key to all of this is a cot with 4 contact points to the ground. More than 4 and the chore of leveling the cot with rocks under the legs on a slope or rocky ground becomes quite tedious.

One of the other big benefits of cots is shoving your stuff underneath them and out of the way. Once again the roll-a-cot is ideal because it only has 2 leg assemblies and is tall, making it easy to store gear underneath it.

I don’t know what your intended use is. You posted on a rafting board, so I’m assuming you’re planning on using them for rivers. A lot of of the cots I’ve seen listed above are going to be great for car camping. Some are better than others, but none are as good as the roll-a-cot. Many are too low to the ground. All of the ones I saw listed had 6 or more contact points to the ground. There is a reason everyone on here has the Roll-a-Cot.

Cots and backpacking tents don’t mix. Just sleep on your pad. If you’re backpacking and carrying a cot, ditch it. Your back and shoulders will thank you. If you’re car camping, get a big tent that fits your cot. Or a dragonfly tarp like the one in my pic.

In the attached pics I’ve got the cots set up on rocky ground. On the pic with the tarp, we are camping on a pretty good slope. I put some flat rocks under the down hill legs of the cot.
 

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I'm reporting on how my new cot works and how it feels. It is light as a feather, 2lb 9.6oz, comfortable and very narrow. I'm 5'10' and 196 #'s. It fits and supports me very nicely. Although I bought mainly for rafting/car camping. Any hike under 5 miles I would probably take it with a really light air pad. One not insulated for warm conditions or one insulated for cold weather. The extra 4# for cot and pad is worth it IMHO. For rafting I wanted to get of the ground without adding a lot of weight or cubic inches to raft ( it works great ). The three downsides are, not as easy to set up as a folding or roll cot, but the first time only took me 3 minutes with all my head scratching. Takes a fair amount of muscle (a little more than my 90# wife has). It is narrow 24", but for more money they sell a bigger one. This one fits my budget and pads I already own. With a Sea 2 Sumit cool max large fitted sheet it is a sweet set up that will not cause you sweat all night. It is comfortable enough with no pad but I'm a side sleeper so a pad does help me a lot. The legs are very stable, no rocking, no noise. I'd buy again. I got a low cot since I like to sleep in a small light weight tent and want to still be able to sit up when on it.

https://www.rei.com/product/889599/helinox-cot-lite
 

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For information:

I have had the helinox cot one since they came out and very happy with it.
When Bighorn posted the REI sale link for a lighter version called Cot lite on sale (being a gear fan I bit and sent in the money)

got the cot lite and like it a lot. Only problem is disassembly. I have a fixture in my spine and maybe that made it harder, but I could not pop out the leg assemblies in my living room. left the cot in the garage and will hopefully find a best way to take the legs apart.

bottom line for me is the cot lite is not a bad deal. but for creeky beat up boaters like me, be sure you can take the cot lite apart before buying. The original cot one tho assembles and takes apart much easier due to I think the handles on the leg assemblies and may be a better option for boaters like me.
 

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Another vote for the Roll-a-cot. The highlights in my book are:

- Not having to immediately join the hunt for a sleeping zone before everyone else gets all the good flat spots when good sites are limited.
- I can create a level & flat sleeping spot practically anywhere.
- Cooler sleeping on hot weather trips.
- I like that my feet can hang off the end of the cot while sleeping (personal preference)
- The "silly" little pocket is handy for storing, and finding in the night, random items such as lip shit, headlamp, water bottle, etc
- it can also serve as bench seating for kids in camp
- the mesh is quick drying even if you forget to set it up until after dark
- I can sleep on my boat with no special decking required
- the extra weight is more than offset by the excellent outdoor sleeping

Downsides:
- Yet another piece of gear to load/unload at each camp
- dealing with the envy from discontented ground sleepers
 

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I have a Helinox cot lite and it works well for me. For those of you having trouble disassembling the cot maybe the following video will help: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fXI2owsdlIs I don't have much strength and I have no trouble with the cot but I always place it on it's side for both assembly and disassembly. It seems you have more leverage with the rest of your body that way. One thing to be careful of is to make sure the joints that form the feet are inserted properly as I have broken a couple of these. Helinox did send me a replacement both times but at least if one breaks you can still make it work with 3 instead of 4.
 

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I have a Helinox cot lite and it works well for me. For those of you having trouble disassembling the cot maybe the following video will help: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fXI2owsdlIs I don't have much strength and I have no trouble with the cot but I always place it on it's side for both assembly and disassembly. It seems you have more leverage with the rest of your body that way. One thing to be careful of is to make sure the joints that form the feet are inserted properly as I have broken a couple of these. Helinox did send me a replacement both times but at least if one breaks you can still make it work with 3 instead of 4.

Great video of one of the worlds strongest women. Just kidding a little;-), but not as easy as she makes it look when it is new and not stretched out.
 
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