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Old 05-28-2022, 05:35 PM   #1
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Adding a roof ladder

I am considering adding a ladder to the back of my 2016 Dutch Star. Does anyone have any recommendations on what ladder to buy and how to install it?
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Old 05-28-2022, 05:50 PM   #2
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I doubt there are any support blocks behind the fiberglass for a ladder. Be sure you can access that area to add the required supports

I have found that a collapsing 16ft ladder is safer and easier. Stores easily above freezer in the first bay.
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Old 05-28-2022, 06:02 PM   #3
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I'm with Red on the ladder, Collapsible works great and then you don't have to have the reinforcement blocks behind the fiberglass cap.
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Old 05-28-2022, 06:38 PM   #4
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Depending on your age, size and physical condition, a collapsible ladder may not be for you. I'd make sure you purchase it somewhere that it's easily returnable, no questions asked if you're at all uncomfortable with it. Amazon has several with free returns, including some decent sale prices. This one has 1,149 positive reviews:

https://www.amazon.com/Telescopic-Al...15&sr=8-5&th=1

In any case, be careful and don't climb without securing the ladder and/or have someone hold it for you. I had to have rotator cuff surgery a few years ago after slipping off my installed ladder and heard some pretty scary stories from the doctors and nurses in the ER about ladder accidents. With no slope to them, the installed ladders are more difficult to climb.

Even if I had a telescoping ladder, I'd probably use a more conventional extension ladder at home. They just seem safer to me.
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Old 05-28-2022, 09:18 PM   #5
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I miss having a fixed roof ladder. But I don't think adding one would be easy due to the lack of access to have the correct support behind it. In addition it would probably increase my clearance height to 13' 6" and I don't want to be over 13'.

I have one of the 16' collapsible ladders I carry. It sucks and I'm 185", so no where near the supposed 300# limit. "Collapsible" is a good term for it because each time I've been on it that's what it feels like it's going to do! At home I use one of my regular extension ladders.
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Old 05-28-2022, 10:27 PM   #6
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I use this one. It has a wider base and looks more stable. https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0...?ie=UTF8&psc=1
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Old 05-29-2022, 11:58 AM   #7
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All RV ladders I have seen have minimal weight limits. I have seen them range from as low as 185 lbs. up to 220 lbs. With ladders, you must allow for the weight of what you will be carrying up as well as your own weight. I recall hearing a salesman tell a customer that Newmar doesn't put ladders on their DPs because they look "ugly" hanging on the back and Newmar wants their product to be high-end. I think it is more likely because they hinder engine access, but I agreed with the ugly comment. I use this one in red, https://www.amazon.com/BEETRO-Telesc...NrPXRydWU&th=1
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Old 05-29-2022, 02:48 PM   #8
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I have the wide base as well. My complaint is that if placed at a proper angle for climbing, mine bends inward horribly as soon as I start climbing it. It's too flexible.
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Old 05-30-2022, 01:24 AM   #9
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Thanks for replies. I will go with the telescopic ladder.
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Old 05-30-2022, 03:26 AM   #10
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I purchased a 14.5' ladder which is advertised as 18' reach. It extends about 1.5' above the roof so you have something to hold onto when getting on and off the roof. Wouldn't go with anything shorter than that.
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Old 05-30-2022, 08:41 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NCC-1701A View Post
I miss having a fixed roof ladder. But I don't think adding one would be easy due to the lack of access to have the correct support behind it. In addition it would probably increase my clearance height to 13' 6" and I don't want to be over 13'.

I have one of the 16' collapsible ladders I carry. It sucks and I'm 185", so no where near the supposed 300# limit. "Collapsible" is a good term for it because each time I've been on it that's what it feels like it's going to do! At home I use one of my regular extension ladders.
The first time I used mine I thought I was on a ride at Universal Studios, but after the next few times I gained confidence it wasn't going to collapse on me. I also don't extend mine over the roof, but place the top edge on the very top tail of the roof. I place it between the two slides on the passenger side. I grab onto the Girrad awning support to help stabilize me when getting on and off the ladder.
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Old 05-30-2022, 02:58 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by Dtrog2u View Post
Thanks for replies. I will go with the telescopic ladder.
Two things....if you have to use the telescoping ladder while on the road, place it on the side of the coach so one side of the ladder is touching an extended slide, it' less likely to slip off. You can also use the top edge of the slide to place your foot for steadier access to the roof.

For me, there is really no reason to go one the roof, ON THE ROAD, unless an emergency repair is needed. So, I have yet to use my telescoping ladder. For work while at home, I made this ladder....it's a standard single Werner fiberglass ladder, that I cut off two rungs and added what are called Guardian Arms to the top. It allows you to climb the ladder and walk through the center at the top, rather than try and climb off to one side. The ladder is available at Home Dept and the arms on Amazon. I store the assembly under the coach at home.

https://www.amazon.com/Guardian-Fall...s%2C122&sr=8-5


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Old 06-17-2022, 02:35 AM   #13
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I use a telescoping ladder as well. I find it easiest to access the roof via the driver side back behind/near the tag axel, because I feel using the fake Gerard cover is less likely to cause damage (I avoid the actual awning). Also, I only use it to stabilize myself.

Sincerely…

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