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Camp Time Roll-A-Table Review

This long-time classic table with a vinyl cover is easy to clean, has a straightforward setup, and packs up nicely
Editors' Choice Award
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Price:  $99 List | $99.00 at Amazon
Pros:  Compact storage, durable, solid-surface table top, easy to clean, base and table top store together nicely
Cons:  Can be wobbly, setup requires top of table to face down, hands get dirty during set up
Manufacturer:   Camp Time
By Jason Wanlass ⋅ Review Editor  ⋅  Aug 24, 2020
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68
OVERALL
SCORE


RANKED
#2 of 10
  • Stability and Strength - 30% 7
  • Portability - 30% 7
  • Durability - 20% 7
  • Ease of Setup - 20% 6

Our Verdict

The Camp Time Roll-A-Table is a classic design that's been around for decades and is a staple in family car camping and river trips alike. Its roll up and carry design takes up little space in a car trunk, camper, or boat. The tabletop is sturdy, wipes clean easily, and the entire thing packs down small for its deployed size. However, it can be a bit wobbly, the vinyl tabletop is prone to knicks (though we've yet to see any actual rips or tears), and installing the legs left metallic dust on our hands multiple times. Still, we feel that this table's positive aspects outweigh out its negatives, and we feel it's worthy of our Editors' Choice Award.

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Our Analysis and Test Results

The name Camp Time Roll-A-Table sums up the gist of this table. It rolls into one self-contained unit, removing the need for a stuff sack. Eleven wooden slats are covered and individually sealed by poly-vinyl to form one cohesive table top. The metal frame and legs thread by hand into the tabletop's underside, creating a dining top 28 inches tall. We like how conveniently the whole system packs together. We were also impressed with its ability to maintain balance under heavy loads, and the fact that its design allows users to entirely place their legs under the table without bumping their knees into any cross-beams.

Performance Comparison


We enjoyed many a meal on the Roll-A-Table. Here  you can see the vinyl covering seals 11 wood slats to create a cohesive tabletop.
We enjoyed many a meal on the Roll-A-Table. Here, you can see the vinyl covering seals 11 wood slats to create a cohesive tabletop.

Stability


Although we appreciate the simplicity of this table's design, the lack of supporting cross-braces (commonly found on camp tables of this size) leads to increased wobble, even on flat and even surfaces. We examined many factors for stability, including how much give or sway each table had once assembled. To measure this, we placed the tabletop's edge against a straight wall. Then, we secured the legs in place and applied resistance to see how far from the wall we could pull the table top. The Roll-A-Table had the most natural give or sway of all the tables we tested. However, as the old saying goes, what doesn't bend breaks, and we've yet to hear an account of anyone we know who has broken one of these tables.


The lack of X-braces connecting the legs makes for a simpler design, but it's probably also what leads to its wobbliness. On the upside, no annoying diagonal braces mean your knees have room to fit underneath this table unencumbered. It's unavoidable for portable camp tables to have some give, so our suggestion is to just make sure you scope out a flat, solid area for it, and maybe don't use it for any competetive Jenga games. Most of our testers were completely fine to compromise some wobbliness to be able to saddle up to the table with their legs underneath it.

We placed the tabletop against a straight wall  secured the legs  and then pulled the table to see how far from the wall it swayed. Although strong  this table did have a significant amount of give.
We placed the tabletop against a straight wall, secured the legs, and then pulled the table to see how far from the wall it swayed. Although strong, this table did have a significant amount of give.

Despite being wobbly, the Roll-A-Table received higher results for stability than we expected. The table did not tip over easily. We subjected all four corners of the table (separately) with increasing amounts of pressure to discover how much weight it could handle before tipping over. Surprised and impressed, we gave up trying at 150 pounds because the table never budged.

We liked this model's sealed tabletop  which allowed for easier cleanup.
We liked this model's sealed tabletop, which allowed for easier cleanup.

Portability


We experienced no problems in transporting the Camp Time table from campsite to car or vice versa. We appreciated how it folds together into one compact package.

This table is about the same size as our camp chair  which made packing and storing it a breeze.
This table is about the same size as our camp chair, which made packing and storing it a breeze.

It rolls up into a very portable bundle measuring 33 inches in length by about 4.5-6.4 inches in diameter, depending on how tightly it's rolled. Weighing in a hair over 10 lbs, its weight is easy to manage.


We do feel the carrying handle, secured only by four wood staples, may be inadequate for the size and weight of the table. Additionally, given the table's wobbly nature, it is more difficult to move (slide) once it is set up and loaded. Have a friend help if you're planning on moving this table once it's loaded up.

The addition of the carrying handle appears to be an afterthought in the design process. We wish the strap was a bit thicker for more comfort.
The addition of the carrying handle appears to be an afterthought in the design process. We wish the strap was a bit thicker for more comfort.

Durability


Two key components of our durability rating included the nature of the manufacturer's warranty and how well the product held up from being assembled and disassembled more than 30 times by our testers. Overall, we like the table's sealed poly-vinyl surface. Over time, we'd expect extensive use to give way to knicks and scratches, but we do know many people who have put these tables through the wringer for collective decades of camp and river trips, and the Roll-A-Tables are still going strong. Just be sure to take care with heat or sharp objects.


Camp Time's warranty is good for manufacturer's defects in workmanship or materials, though it doesn't list a specific time frame. However, after decades of virtually unchanged design, we imagine that Camp Time has production of this table pretty dialed. If there is an issue, though, the warrantly should cover anything resulting from a defect in manufacturing.

Lastly, the vinyl covering means this model doesn't rely on bungee cords to hold together the individual slats that make up the tabletop, as many other roll-top tables we have tested over the years do. The is a potential boon to its longevity, as bungee cords tend to lose their rigidity over time in our experience. Even more so when the bungee cords are very thin, as in many camping tables. Since this model doesn't rely on something that is expected to inherently have a shorter life span, we give this model a nod in the durability department among roll-top tables.

Ease of Set-up


Given its simple design, the Camp Time Roll-A-Table is intuitive to set up. All bystanders we challenged could assemble the table without the need for instructions. The table can be assembled by one person and even with one hand.


Yes, it is relatively easy to assemble. However, the easiest way to get the job done was turning the entire table upside down to hand screw each leg into place.

The easiest way to set up the table is to lay it on its back. Unfortuntely  this method exposes the tabletop to unnecessary dirt or grime before being used.
The easiest way to set up the table is to lay it on its back. Unfortuntely, this method exposes the tabletop to unnecessary dirt or grime before being used.

Given the flimsy nature of any roll-top table, it is very challenging for one person to prop the table top on its side to assemble, leaving the option of laying the face of the table (where you plan to place your food or gear) down on the ground.

Our hands were commonly covered in metallic dust after assembly and disassembly of the Roll-A-Table.
Our hands were commonly covered in metallic dust after assembly and disassembly of the Roll-A-Table.

One drawback of the Roll-A-Table was that while threading the metal legs into place, metal dust routinely rubbed off on our hands. We initially thought this was just leftover from manufacturing and would eventually decrease. However, we noticed the issue every time we assembled the table. We realize this is not a quality issue; however, we felt annoyed with the fact that we needed to wash our hands after every assembly or tear down. If you have a set of gloves handy, we recommend using them when assembling this model.

An aluminum frame adds rigidity to this table  with each of the legs outfitted with bolts to screw into the table top.
This self contained setup stores all of the necessary pieces into a neatly attached mesh bag.
The Roll-A-Time table is one of the easiest tables we tested to setup. Simply unroll the table top  and attach the frame and legs.

Value


Though the table isn't inexpensive, we have multiple friends who have used this table for several years, even decades. Given its durability and utility, we think this table is worth the price.

Gentrye sits down with the Roll-A-Table and enjoys ample knee room along with her delicious fajita burrito.
Gentrye sits down with the Roll-A-Table and enjoys ample knee room along with her delicious fajita burrito.

Conclusion


We liked the look and whole idea of the table right out of the box and know many firsthand accounts of this model lasting for years across many types of trips. We appreciate the straight-forward assembly and the compact package it rolls down to for storage. Despite the annoyances of aluminum residue on your hands and some slight wobbles, if you're looking for a full sized table that still packs down small, the Roll-A-Table is a great option.

Jason Wanlass