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Old 01-14-2017, 01:18 AM   #1
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Brand: Thor Motor Coach
Model: Thor Axis
State: Mississippi
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THOR #6203
Thor Axis 25.2 ladder or lack there of

I recently ordered my Axis 25.2 ... I know that this floor plan is the only one ( I think) that does not come with a ladder. I plan to add solar panels to the roof at some point and I would need to be able to easily access the roof to adjust the tilt of the panels not to mention normal roof maintenance. Is there no way to mount an after market permanent ladder? Does the rear slide make that an impossibility? Is there any other place one could be added?
I realize I could get one of those collapsible ladders and for those of you who use one of these, how stable are they? How easy is it to get on and off the roof? For someone uncomfortable with heights ( me ) are they even somethings to be considered?
Thanks
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Old 01-14-2017, 01:26 AM   #2
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Don't have a 25.2 but from what I've seen of that slide back there: There is no way a ladder can be mounted back there.

I have one of these collapsible ladders: 6' Compact Folding Step Ladder - GP Logistics SLD-S6 - Ladders - Camping World

Its pretty sturdy. I use it to put the sun screens on the front window when we're camping--I don't think its tall enough to climb on the roof from it though.

There is a taller one that may work: 7' Double-Sided Rung Ladder - GP Logistics SLD-D7 - Ladders - Camping World
not sure though.
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Old 01-14-2017, 01:38 AM   #3
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In order to mount a ladder you would have to know exactly where the aluminum studs are. Since the unit was designed without a ladder the studs might not be capable of supporting a ladder. Best choice would be to purchase a collapsible telescoping ladder. I have one that extends to 12.5 feet which would be plenty for you. Ladders are available on Amazon for about $100 and go to 12.5 feet, this would probably be a lot less than you would pay for an RV ladder. Just a suggestion.
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Old 01-14-2017, 03:06 AM   #4
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With the rear slide on the 25.2, there is no way to mount a ladder on the back. Mounting one on the side would make you too wide.

Like SuperD, we carry a 12.5 foot collapsible aluminum ladder. It would fit under the pass through between the front storage compartments, but we store ours in the back compartment. Shop around online and don't buy from the big RV store.

It is not as stable as a normal extension ladder. Still, I find it stable enough for my 180#, not any more scary than the mounted ladder from my previous 5th wheel. My last coach had no rear ladder, and I have seen some on the road without.
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Old 01-14-2017, 03:15 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sforl View Post
I recently ordered my Axis 25.2 ... I know that this floor plan is the only one ( I think) that does not come with a ladder. I plan to add solar panels to the roof at some point and I would need to be able to easily access the roof to adjust the tilt of the panels not to mention normal roof maintenance. Is there no way to mount an after market permanent ladder? Does the rear slide make that an impossibility? Is there any other place one could be added?
I realize I could get one of those collapsible ladders and for those of you who use one of these, how stable are they? How easy is it to get on and off the roof? For someone uncomfortable with heights ( me ) are they even somethings to be considered?
Thanks
then you don't want a collapsible ladder.a 12' ladder will give you 1 foot over the roof with nothing to hold on to when you get to top and when you come off roof to ladder.you also need something to tie the ladder to on the roof.
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Old 01-14-2017, 12:35 PM   #6
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Tigwelder is correct! I didn't look to see how tall your Axis was 11-3, before I recommended the 12.5 foot ladder, it would be dangerous to use and would not have the proper angle when leaning against your coach! Amazon, or maybe your local hardware store, has ladders much taller that would be safer to use. The taller ladders are more expensive but I think it would still be cheaper than an RV ladder.
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Old 01-14-2017, 12:40 PM   #7
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For regular use - and assuming you can find a space to store - a larger ladder - preferably with wider spacing at top/bottom to better stabilize.
Werner and Little Giant both make a folding/telescoping ladder... 22ffoot version allows an approx 11' A-frame or 22 foot extension - and folds to less than 6 foot...

Little Giants 17 foot with the ability to have a vertical and angled side in 'A-frame' would let you free stand it right next to the rig...

Collapsible ladders are ok for occasional use - but I wouldn't want to use them regularly... (same with ladder on back of RV too). I'm about 220# - less weight can make a difference...

I carry a Little Giant on longer trips - but attach it to the outside ladder for travel.
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Old 01-14-2017, 03:04 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by sforl View Post

....cut.... For someone uncomfortable with heights ( me ) are they even somethings to be considered?
Thanks
I'm comfortable with heights and would not want to be climbing on an RV roof on a regular basis on a ladder that is not attached in some way. I think getting off the roof would be particularly dangerous.

At a minimum would want some way to attach the extension ladder to top edge of motorhome to add stability. And I'd want the ladder to extend about 3 feet above roof to make transfer safer.
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Old 01-14-2017, 07:48 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by Chance View Post
I'm comfortable with heights and would not want to be climbing on an RV roof on a regular basis on a ladder that is not attached in some way. I think getting off the roof would be particularly dangerous.

At a minimum would want some way to attach the extension ladder to top edge of motorhome to add stability. And I'd want the ladder to extend about 3 feet above roof to make transfer safer.
Problem with not having a ladder to begin with, nothing to attach it too. Options for this problem are rather limited. Forget the solar and roof maintenance, have someone else do it, or have a helper hold the ladder.
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Old 01-14-2017, 09:25 PM   #10
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Problem with not having a ladder to begin with, nothing to attach it too. Options for this problem are rather limited. Forget the solar and roof maintenance, have someone else do it, or have a helper hold the ladder.
I was thinking more in terms of a couple of clips at top of wall that will stabilize a ladder without carrying the weight. Another simpler approach I saw a roofing contractor use is to bolt a cross member to ladder that rest on edge of roof. This would make it tougher for ladder to slip down or slip to sides. This has benefit of not having to alter the motorhome.

Personally, I would design and build a custom ladder, but that's beyond what most owners can or should do. As part of my job early in my career I designed or approved the design of many custom ladders for platforms, catwalks, tanks, pressure vessels, etc. The biggest challenge would be to make it so that it can be folded or taken apart so it can be stored in the limited size of storage compartments. If I wanted access to roof, I wouldn't give up.
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Old 01-15-2017, 01:26 AM   #11
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Ours has the rear slide, and no ladder. Since on our last coach, I hadn't been on top of it for the last five or more years we owned it, I'm not particularly bothered by not having it there.
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Old 01-16-2017, 02:41 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sforl View Post
I recently ordered my Axis 25.2 ... I know that this floor plan is the only one ( I think) that does not come with a ladder. I plan to add solar panels to the roof at some point and I would need to be able to easily access the roof to adjust the tilt of the panels not to mention normal roof maintenance. Is there no way to mount an after market permanent ladder? Does the rear slide make that an impossibility? Is there any other place one could be added?
I realize I could get one of those collapsible ladders and for those of you who use one of these, how stable are they? How easy is it to get on and off the roof? For someone uncomfortable with heights ( me ) are they even somethings to be considered?
Thanks
Personally I wouldn't own an RV that didn't have a ladder attached. I do too much preventive maintenance and need to inspect that roof area every couple of months.

Are you sure you will need to get up on the roof to tilt those panels all the time?

If you are uncomfortable with heights you will not be a happy person on any type of unattached light weight ladder leaning on the side of your coach. I think your only options are to stay off the roof and forget about tilting solar panels, or cancel your order and buy a coach with a sturdy ladder.
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Old 01-16-2017, 02:55 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Joe-FL
Are you sure you will need to get up on the roof to tilt those panels all the time?
This is a good point: Most people simply mount the panels flat against the roof and call it a day.

If you are really worried about tilt and getting that maximum efficiency out of the solar panels try to find a motorized mount that you can safely tilt from inside the coach.

Adjusting the tilt does mean getting on the roof several times a day to keep them tracking the sun. Just sounds like too much work for camping!
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Old 01-16-2017, 03:05 PM   #14
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If I decide to get solar panels I will invest in the motorized ones. I was not aware of that option.
As for roof maintenance I would like to be able to inspect those personally every month or so. I think a good extension ladder would be the better choice over those telescoping ones. I can keep it in the MH storage rather than packing it in the MH.
Thanks everyone for your help
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Old 01-16-2017, 03:47 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sforl
If I decide to get solar panels I will invest in the motorized ones. I was not aware of that option.
Note that I don't know if they exist--you may have to rig something up.

Even household solar doesn't tilt: You just install it on the roof in the best possible place.
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Old 01-17-2017, 01:40 AM   #16
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If you really needed a ladder, one consideration might be to mount a short bar on the roof side-rail something that an extension ladder could hook onto.
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