Posted by: Waterbird on Feb-20-13 11:02 AM (EST)
I did a ton of research before buying the Camptime Roll-a-Cot and concluded that it has the best reviews of any cot on the market.
. . . but I would never take it kayak camping. Maybe canoe camping if you like to travel heavy. For me it's strictly for car camping.
The Roll-a-Cot has some drawbacks. Not easy to assemble, but once you get it together it's very comfortable, especially when paired with a good mattress (the REI Camp Bed 3.5 is great). I've used it often in the past year and the vinyl fabric has not stretched noticeably, so it provides good support. The wingnuts that tension the legs are quite difficult to turn, but a friend and I invented a wooden "wrench" that helps a great deal.
To protect the tent floor I cut 4 sections of pool noodle about 4" long and slipped them over the legs. Then I cut 4 circles of carpet about 5" in diameter and glued those to the bottom of the noodle pieces.
Many also recommend putting tennis balls on the legs.
A big challenge is to find a tent that's tall enough to accommodate a cot. My recommendations: Alps Mountaineering Hybrid CE 3; Mountain Hardwear Corners 3; REI Taj 3. You need a minimum height of about 50", which is rare in a three-person tent and nonexistant in a two person. Or you can get a lower cot, in which case even some two-person tents might work, like the Kelty Trail Ridge 2.