This review includes setup, our necessary 'customizations,' walk-through, and the pros and cons of the Smittybilt Annex (part # 2788).
The Smittybilt annex attaches to the Smittybilt Overlander roof top tent #2783.
Check out our video review below...
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What's in the box:
Annex, storage bag, 10 steel tent stakes with a bag to hold them, and installation instructions.
Notes: We bought the Smittybilt Annex part #2788 on Amazon in September 2016. At the time of this writing (December 2017), the annex picture that is on the Smittybilt website doesn't match the annex we received. A commenter on our YouTube channel who purchased a Smittybilt Annex part #2788 on Amazon, says the door is on the side, the annex is made to fit behind the ladder, and there is no rear wall door in the annex he received.
Installing the Annex
The annex slides into the slot on the bottom of the hinge area of the tent. There is a strip of velcro in that slot that is used to hold the tent travel cover in place). Remove the velcro strip then slide in the annex.
The bottom of the Overlander tent has zippers on either side of the ladder. Connect the annex to the bottom of the tent using those zippers. The annex was folded inside-out when we received it. Make sure the Smittybilt logo is on the outside and then the zippers will line up correctly.
Our annex doesn't look like the one in the instruction guide. The instructions for the tent we received showed that the ladder goes inside the annex wall. What?! That means the annex door must be open so that you can use the ladder to climb into and out of the tent.
That doesn't make any sense, so we put the ladder on the outside of the annex which works better. However, the annex material is too tight behind the ladder. No worries! We 'customize' it. We cut a slit in the top of the annex material behind each ladder support. Now everything fits together well.
Be sure to put the annex on the tent before inserting the little poles that hold the window awnings and rainfly. The annex has built-in slits for the poles to go through.
Features & Thoughts
The door of the annex opens on three sides with zippers and can be rolled up and held out of the way at the top. There is also a screen behind the door that unzips and may be rolled up and fastened at the top.
Two large windows are on either side of the annex. There is no zipper on the window screens. The privacy cover on the outside of the windows can be unzipped and rolled up to the top and fastened.
The annex does not have a floor. Another door, without a screen, is at the back of the annex. It zips on the sides and bottom. When open, the back door allows access to your vehicle or trailer. Two small pockets are on the back wall, one on either side of the back door.
The annex has long straps along the bottom that can be made into loops and used to stake it to the ground. The straps are long enough that rocks can be placed in them if you are in a location where the stakes won't work.
Our Smittybilt Overlander tent is on top of the high rack on a Morris Mule trailer. The top doors of the trailer open out to the sides like wings. Because of this, the trailer door on the annex side pushes into the back wall of the annex. Our tent is a little lower to the ground than it would be if it were on top of a vehicle making the bottom of it puddle on the ground with extra material.
The space in the annex is roughly the same as one-half of the bottom of the tent: about 47" x 56."
- The annex works great for its intended purpose of a changing room.
- There are no tent poles to deal with.
- It's a good place to store firewood, chairs and anything else to keep items out of the weather.
- The windows are super large.
- The big straps on the bottom provide versatility in anchoring the annex.
- The product in the instruction manual pictures doesn't match the product we received.
- Instructions show ladder covered by annex wall which makes no sense.
- We had to cut/customize the annex so it will work.
- Annex isn't a good fit for us because we have our roof top tent on top of an overlanding trailer.
Would we buy it again?
We are on the fence about this one. While the annex serves its intended purpose, it isn't our preferred choice for a privacy shelter.
What Works Better for Us
We also have the Browning Privacy Shelter, and we love it! We've used it many times. The Browning Privacy Shelter is big and roomy. Check out our review of the Browning Privacy Shelter.
Some of the Gear Mentioned in this Video
If you use the Amazon links below and make a purchase, there is no additional cost to you. We make a tiny commission on the items you purchase. This helps us continue to make videos and share information. We appreciate your support.
Smittybilt Tent Annex: http://amzn.to/2jcBgEB
Browning Privacy Shelter on Amazon: http://amzn.to/2E1c2lR
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