Hands-on Gear Review

REI Co-op Camp Roll Table Review

Best Buy Award
Price:  $65 List | $64.50 at REI
Pros:  Stout, well-built, all-metal design, lightweight for its size, great value
Cons:  Protective grommets prone to detach, base of table difficult to expand
Bottom line:  This is a stout, rock-solid table that is perfect for a camping trip, tailgate party, day at the beach, and more.
Editors' Rating:   
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Weight (lbs):  8 lbs
Unfolded Dimensions (inches):  27.5 x 27.5 x 27.5 in
Folded Dimensions (inches):  27.5 x 7 x 4.5 in
Manufacturer:   REI Co-op

Our Verdict

We bought it. We used it. We put it through the wringer. We took a step back and thought about it, and we can say without hesitation — and with just a little pun intended — that the REI Co-op Camp Roll Table is a square deal. Great for cooking off and eating from, this hardtop table is sturdy enough to handle almost any realistic load. It's substantial yet relatively portable in comparison to other large, hardtop models we tested, making it a natural choice to bring along to campsites, tailgaters, and all kinds of events. Its modest price tag also can't be avoided. For combining price and performance better than the rest, the REI model earns our Best Buy Award.

If you're looking for a little taller table that has a solid surface and more leg room, and don't mind a price hike, read our review of the Camp Time Roll-A-Table.


RELATED REVIEW: The Best Camping Table Review

Our Analysis and Test Results

Review by:
Jason Wanlass

Last Updated:
Wednesday
May 30, 2018

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The boxy design of the Camp Roll is what sets it apart from the rest. The table's square shape makes it one of the strongest and most stable tables we tested.

Performance Comparison


We realize Mom wouldn't be happy with muddy motocross boots on the table  but we needed to find out just how far we could push the tables we tested.
We realize Mom wouldn't be happy with muddy motocross boots on the table, but we needed to find out just how far we could push the tables we tested.

Stability


Our efforts to tip and flip this table over were futile. We moved from corner to corner and stacked as much weight on this table as we dared to stack, trying to get this thing to fall over. It was like trying tip over a large block of wood. In the end, we stopped at 150 pounds. That was enough to prove a point — this table didn't move, didn't lean, didn't sway.

Rei Co-op table is extremely stable and strong  making it a perfect place to store gear  cook or serve as a buffet table.
Rei Co-op table is extremely stable and strong, making it a perfect place to store gear, cook or serve as a buffet table.

Its boxy design and reinforced aluminum frame earned this table some of our highest marks for stability. There are virtually no wiggles, wobbles or swaying from this table. Sometimes thinking inside the box can pay off. In the case of the REI Co-op Camp Roll, we feel it did.

Portability


The Camp Roll also scored high marks for portability. For a large and stout table, its overall weight including the stuff sack is just 8 pounds. The large shoulder strap makes it easy to carry from the car to the camp, and it folds down to a manageable size. Additionally, the table was easy to move once set up and loaded. Overall, we are impressed with the packed size and weight of this table. It is one of the most portable tables of its kind that we reviewed.

The table's stuff sack and shoulder strap make it easy to carry to just about anywhere you're headed.
The table's stuff sack and shoulder strap make it easy to carry to just about anywhere you're headed.

The only complaint we have is the tightness of the stuff stack. The plastic clips which hold the table top to the base tended to catch on the stuff sack fabric when we were stowing the aluminum table top. This happened every time we packed up the table, which was a lot, so it did get a little annoying.

Durability


We based our durability rating on a couple of different things including the manufacturer's warranty, materials and design, and a little bit of elbow grease. We unpacked, set up, took down and re-stowed this table more than 30 times to see if we could find any wear and tear that could lead to durability problems. Overall, the REI Co-op Camp Roll performed well.

A few of the plastic protective grommets fell out of the tabletop during testing. By falling out  they expose the cord directly to the sharp edge of the aluminum.
A few of the plastic protective grommets fell out of the tabletop during testing. By falling out, they expose the cord directly to the sharp edge of the aluminum.

Before unpacking the table for the first time, we spent several hours reading consumer ratings and feedback on the table. One reoccurring concern we saw surrounded the small plastic grommets that protect the bungee cords that hold the table top together. Falling out of place exposes the bungee cords directly to the sharp edges of the aluminum. If the cord gets sliced in half, the table top ceases to be a table top.

After a few assemblies and teardowns, a few of the grommets had either fallen out or were damaged enough that they may fall out. After more than 30 go-rounds with the table, we saw no visible damage to the bungee system. That said, this may pose some long-term durability issues after movement, weathering, and sun rot takes its toll on the table.

The Camp Roll Table's aluminum top makes it a perfect place to use a camp stove.
The Camp Roll Table's aluminum top makes it a perfect place to use a camp stove.

Ease of Setup


This table was not the easiest table set up and tear down, but it also was not the most difficult. It fell right in the middle. For this metric, we took things a little to the extreme to give us a broad view on this table's ease of set up. Not only did we put a stopwatch to several assemblies and tear-downs, but we also asked questions like: Can one person assemble the table? Can the table be assembled with one hand? Then we turned to several bystanders and timed them while they assembled each table without any instructions.

Each time we expanded the base  we were required to inch the brackets along with our thumbs -- bad for our thumbs but good for making the table base stiffer and more sturdy.
Each time we expanded the base, we were required to inch the brackets along with our thumbs -- bad for our thumbs but good for making the table base stiffer and more sturdy.

In the end, this table has a relatively intuitive assembly process. It goes together easily but takes longer than average time to complete. One reason for its slow assembly is the reinforcement brackets. The brackets crisscross and the attach to each of the four legs. The attachment section is very tight around the legs, which is good for support but bad for set up. When expanding the base and legs, the attachment pieces don't slide very well, making it a small challenge to open the base. Every time we set up the table, we had to force the brackets up the table legs with our thumbs. This could be a problem for younger people or users who have less dexterity or strength in their hands. A child might not be able to handle this table alone.

One of the first things we noticed about the table is how much space the cross beams take up. They made it impossible for us to slide our knees under the table for a more comfortable posture.
One of the first things we noticed about the table is how much space the cross beams take up. They made it impossible for us to slide our knees under the table for a more comfortable posture.

Best Applications


The REI Co-op model is a near perfect camping table. It's sturdy, lightweight, and compact when packed yet large enough for a few people to enjoy. We liked that the metal top allowed us to use a camp stove. At the same time, it's perfect for playing cards, dining, or acting as a small buffet table for serving food. This table also has many uses beyond camping. We liked having it at spectator events, cookouts, and backyard parties.

The REI Co-op table is durable  compact  stable and lightweight enough to take along to the campground  park  beach  tailgate party or motocross race.
The REI Co-op table is durable, compact, stable and lightweight enough to take along to the campground, park, beach, tailgate party or motocross race.

Due to the time of year we tested the product, we did not expose the table to regular summertime temps. We did, however, use the table at temperatures up to 80 degrees and found that the metal table top did not heat up in the sun.

Value


For its price tag, the table's quality, size, and high marks for stability and portability create plenty of value for the cost. Our Best Buy Award winner presents an awesome combination of utility, performance, and price.

Round bowl on a square table: The Camp Roll Table's block design makes gives the table great strength and sturdiness.
Round bowl on a square table: The Camp Roll Table's block design makes gives the table great strength and sturdiness.

Conclusion


The REI Co-op Camp Roll Table is in no way a round peg in a square hole. The boxy design creates a stable and strong table that is portable enough for the outdoors. This table has no glaring downsides, but to nitpick, we would appreciate an easier setup, a better-protected bungee system for the tabletop, and a larger stuff sack. All in all, though, the price is right for this one.
Jason Wanlass


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Most recent review: May 30, 2018
Summary of All Ratings

OutdoorGearLab Editors' Rating:  
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 (5.0)
Average Customer Rating:  
 (0.0)
Rating Distribution
1 Total Ratings
5 star: 100%  (1)
4 star: 0%  (0)
3 star: 0%  (0)
2 star: 0%  (0)
1 star: 0%  (0)


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