Dobinsons 4×4 Roll Out Awning 8FT x 9.8FT Large Size, Includes Brackets and Hardware
When it comes to awnings there are a few brands that are well known throughout the overlanding community. Almost every trail-worthy 4Runner has a rollout awning attached to it.
Just take a look around at brands like ARB, CVT, Rhino Rack, and Tepui. They all have an awning solution for the 5th Gen 4Runner and many rack platforms alike.
One brand that may not be known to U.S. customers is Dobinsons. They are an Australian company that specializes in suspension systems and many other off-road components for Toyotas, Jeep, and other platforms.
This is a review of the Dobinsons roll out awning. The awning itself is a very similar design as all the other rollout awning solutions.
I’ll break down this review with the following categories.
- Ease of use
The awning is priced competitively with size options ranging from:
The reason I chose the Dobinsons awning is that its the only awning I could find that came in a 6.9×9.8 configuration.
I wanted to have a large enough roll out footprint with outgoing with a full-blown 8×9.8 or similarly sized awnings. This footprint is enough to provide shade for 4 people without feeling cramped or sitting to close to the vehicle.
As quality goes, I would say its definitely on the budget end spectrum considering the price. I think the quality could be a little better when it comes to the mounting plate where the horizontal poles attach. That being said, I’ve had zero issues with it even while being deployed in over 15mph winds.
As with any of these types of awnings, you’ll definitely want to make sure you tie this down with included guy ropes and stakes to prevent it from parachuting over your vehicle.
Not doing this will not only damage the awning, but it can also potentially damage your vehicle or cause serious injury so using the included guy ropes and stakes is a must.
Pegs, Stakes & Material for the Awning
This leads me to the pegs. The pegs are very standard pegs and mostly useful for soft ground. I tend to keep different types of pegs in my box and change out the included pegs when deploying on rocky ground or sand.
I would recommend getting some heavier duty stakes as the ones included with this awning are pretty basic and work fine for soft soil, but not recommended for sandy or rocky terrain.
The actual canvas material provides enough shade and protection from the sun and rain. It is made from ripstop polyester. The stitching along the canvas where the velcro straps a located seem durable and have not had any fraying or have come undone.
One thing I do like about this particular awning is that the horizontal extendible poles have a peg at the end of each pole that extends through both holes of the rollout bracket. This makes it pretty secure and easy to set up. I have found that awnings with a peg that extends through only one hole can be a challenge to set up with one person as the pegs tend to slip out.
Finally, the awning comes with a protective PVC bag that’s held up pretty well. I left the awning on for about 3 months and it saw extreme heat, cool nights and rain. I can honestly say I was surprised how well it’s held up.
Ease of use
Pictured: Awning Mounted to the LFD Off-Road Crossbars and is mounted using the provided brackets
Ease of use can be broken down into two areas.
- How easy is it to mount
- How easy is it to set up
Most awnings don’t come with mounting brackets, and the few that do typically mount to proprietary rack systems.
In short, you either have to buy brackets that fit your rack system, or your stuck using whatever brackets come with your awning and having to figure out how to make them work with your rack.
The brackets that come with this awning are pretty universal and should fit any rack system on the market. That being said depending on your configuration you might have to modify them a little bit.
Setting up your Awning
Setting up awnings of this kind takes some practice in order to set up with one person. The smaller ones are definitely easier but the 6.5×9.8 size awning is still manageable to set up by your self. Setup is the same with these types of awing.
You start by unzipping the bag, then pull the awning over the roof while still rolled.
Next, swing out the horizontal poles. Take your awning and roll it out and let the vertical poles swing down.
Next, take the horizontal poles and extend them through the holes of the bracket and make the awning taught.
Finally, you take your guy ropes and pegs and stake it to the ground.
Overall I am happy with my purchase, the awning also comes with several accessories such as a mosquito room and windbreak and is compatible with some of the ARB accessories.
It’s is also worth noting that should any of the parts break, they can be replaced with ARB awning parts.