I have always used a piece of flat black cloth on the dash to eliminate reflections when we take pictures. I purchase a new piece every uear or so and cut it to fit.
Some times the wind blows it askue when the doors are open... then Janets pictures include the reflection of the airconditioning grill or the GPS module.
I also try to keep the windows clean... some times the weather doesn't cooperate.
Hey, that is a great idea Chet. So often I don't bother taking pictures through the windshield because of the reflections of the top of the dash. Even if not taking pictures the reflections are still annoying. Next time I use the truck in the sunshine I'll see whether it is worth doing the same as you.
Also, possibly another gift for the camper, or maybe for us - I'm ordering the 2014 book of French Aires - municipal campgrounds / overnight parking areas in villages - closer to staying in Walmart car parks than in a normal commercial campground - good for quick overnight stops when travelling. Got to start getting stuff to prepare for next year's travels.
Diplostrat - I think everyone would be interested to hear more about your new camper - maybe you could start another thread about it to save us hijacking this one.
One last point though:
As close to total independence from shore power as possible, to allow extended operation in Europe without worrying about transformers.
Given the weather in Europe I will take whatever electricity I can get, so don't rule out a transformer. Electrical tools on construction sites (so get wet) are generally 110v over here - I don't know how sensitive your electrics will be to 115v at 60Hz v. 110v at 50Hz, but if not then < $150 should get you a small transformer as used on construction sites, you could then create an adapter cable to run your camper. Outside of summer we usually stay in campgrounds with electricity meaning we can run the fridge / small electric heater / computers / etc. off their electricity.
Also, devices like computer power supplies can often take anything from 100v to 250v.
As you look at pose solutions for your camper, do consider Sterling Power in Droitwich. They make a number of supremely useful products for campers; our Malayan Tiger uses their Alternator to Battery charger. (http://www.sterling-power.com/images/datasheets/A%20to%20B%20low%20res.pdf)
That is a very nice Tiger you've got there.
And a very impressive looking battery and charging system too.
Basically that is the extreme version of the DC to DC charger I have - same principal - a switch-mode power supply that trades off amps for volts to produce the ideal charging voltage at any point in time. Just looking at that datasheet they clearly cater for some serious applications - trains, airport fire trucks, etc.
Thanks for sharing.
Sleepy - wouldn't it have been more efficient to put your sewer hose down into the hole as usual? Was that not possible?
Ah, but then you'd have been denied the privilege of seeing his lunch second hand :E
I can see that you've got to be pretty good with the camper alignment to avoid ending up with a really nasty mess
Parked beside Lake Ruataniwha on a recent trip thru central South Island.
Love the retro truck and camper. Would be great if you'd post up a separate thread with some more pictures and details.
Looks a nice camping spot - we've camped at the top end of Lake Pukaki before, but was so windy we actually turned the RV around worried it might be blown over if side on!
My multi-stage battery charger died (OK, well I dropped it and broke it) so I ordered a new CTEK charger. Only after it arrived did it occur to me that I could use this in the camper. The converter in my camper is useless so I don't ever use it (it produces something like 17v of very noisy DC) so I am always relying on the solar to charge the batteries through a CTEK DC-to-DC "max power point tracker" charger.
so this new charger comes with an easy disconnect so you can permanently wire a connector and temperature gauge onto your camper battery and alternate between plugging the charger into that, or unplugging it, plugging in to the crocodile clips instead and charging vehicles. So what was meant as a simple replacement is now also a gift to the camper.
I only looked at this after Felix mentioned it, and I can't understand the design.
It really seems strange and I don't see any advantage in it. It looks like they've added the complexity and weight of a second slide which doesn't serve much of a purpose apart from making the kitchen cabinets difficult to reach.
I use rubber horse mats - seem to work well for me. I had some lying around that I kept tripping over. I pressure washed the horse urine off them first - didn't really want that smell seeping into the camper.
Have you ever considered a Kindle book reader (or Kindle app on your computer or smart phone)?
With an Amazon Prime account, there are thousands of free and low cost books, etc.
Of course, with the hard copies, you can share those as you finish them up which is an admirable thing to do.
I've thought about those too, but unlike a book, where yesterdays BBQ finger print stains and the day before's mayo stains get left behind as you read - I'd be left with a greasy reminder of my habit of reading while I eat in foreign restaurants :S
5) I think there are less physical contacts too... we don't get to know and visit each other as much as we did a few years ago. mainly... we just don't get to know each other.
Seems to me there is still a fair amount of meeting-up going on looking at all the rallies and the trip reports. And there were plenty of people to meet at Expo this year.
I was thinking the other day about the theory of "six degrees of separation" - made me wonder how close the network of connections are between forum members when considering those who have physically met each other. Pretty close probably. E.g. despite the amount we communicate I've not met Sleepy, but I've met Silversand who has met Sleepy, etc.
Great looking unit, looks well finished!
There is an invitation only group from the East Cast on Facebook called Truck Camping.
Found it, joined it (but then you know that Doug :) ). Didn't notice it was "east coast" - I guess you and I don't really quite fit geographically :S
Any reason why the photo disappeared?
Speaking of Italy. I saw this on the Amalfi coast, good place for it., Who is going to be the first to guess the name?
I can still see the photo.
Oh, and because of the narrow roads around the Amalfi peninsula you tend to see scaled down trucks, buses, etc. Don't know who makes them. Probably from northern Italy, Austria or Switzerland if I were to guess.
PS - we are planning to be in the Dolomites next summer.
Stop stringing us along and GET YOURSELF A TRUCK CAMPER :B - you know it makes sense.
All the best,
I am still here and I even bought a new TC manufacturer from Australia as well!!
You see Robert - this is what we are talking about - you have sneakily bought a TC and have been hiding it from us :S
Congratulations - it looks great - really high quality build. You'll have to put up a separate post with lots of pictures - I in particular would like to learn a lot more about this Australian camper of yours and how you get on with that new Mazda trayback pickup.
So has your wife retired from the Hospital so you can now go travelling? I remember us talking about it in that bar in Sydney and at the time you weren't sure what type of RV to buy. I'm glad to see you have proved to be the "right-thinking" person I thought you were and went for a truck camper :C
Plus I'll want to see some trip reports from you now - I have a whole section in the trip report sticky for exotic places like Australia. I think I've got a trip report from Doug to go in there, but so far on the sticky there is a complete lack of Australian TC action - so hopefully you can address that for us :B.
All the best, and have a great time with the new camper - you've got the right climate for it,
It's funny you mention this because just the other day I was wondering where in the world is SoCalDesertRider? He used to be on this forum every day! I wonder what he's up to?
Anyhow good to see you back and participating again.
Great to see you back DesertRider :C
All the best,
I guess the first thing to find out is what your friend is visualizing. If he is thinking of a really basic, very compact pop-up, for use hunting and four-wheeling in the back woods then there are models that weigh very little and will sit happily on a short bed F150. If he is thinking about something larger and more luxurious then he should be starting with a different truck.
Payload weight might not be his biggest problem if it is the HD version of the F150 ecoboost - in the right specification I believe that can have a payload approaching a 3/4 ton truck - but he would need to check. The length of the load bed is the real problem, and apart from those tiny ultra-light campers I mentioned he will find very little that fits. I might be the only person on this forum with a 5'9" load bed. My Shadow Cruiser sticks out over a foot at the back, and it is a really short camper (no bathroom). My camper is over 20 years old and is not much over 7' long at the bed, but when I look at literature for modern campers they all seem a lot longer (8' plus).
The privilege of England ! To have the right to use insane vehicles !!
Ah We, poor Europeans French, can not do like this, our rules are so straight !
Hi Thierry. I'd have thought you would be able to do this since it is technically just 'cargo'. Maybe different if it was a permanent part of the vehicle. Maybe if it was secured with ratchet straps it would be more likely to be classed as cargo.
The encroachment of EU legislation in these areas does worry me. I know they mean well, but there is a tendency for those whose job it is to legislate to want to legislate more. The natural conclusion would be that you could only drive nice safe vehicles under 5 years old with EU approved accessories installed by an EU approved installer and maintained by an EU approved dealer. That would be a very dull world; one with no room for truck campers, rock-crawling Jeeps, Overland trucks, historic cars etc. :(
Thanks for sharing that link, what a cozy truck camper. We need more diesel options for small pickups here in the states and small light weight camper will follow.
Sabconsulting, I was thinking of you recently, I finally had to tear the entire front of my camper off due to dry rot, and now I'm taking the roof off as well. Repairing RV's with vacuum bonded aluminum walls is not as easy as stick and tin construction, and I feel like I'm in over my head now, I should just walk away from it but I just can't let it go. I can't weld aluminum like you did, but I'll post a thread when it's done and show how I've brought my old camper back to life. All the best, Hans
Good luck with the rebuild Hans. I don't know what I would do either if my camper was made of fancy modern materials. I was only able to do what I did because it was just timber, aluminum, glue and screws. Also I was only able to weld the diamond plate aluminum because it was way thicker than the aluminum siding. My welding skills wouldn't stretch to the latter; I'd be blowing holes in it everywhere.
You are starting to narrow it down, which is good. You've mentioned needing a truck for business, having had 3 Cummins and wanting another diesel, so you are talking about a Dodge Ram then.
I'd look straight at the 3500 since coming from a TT or MH anything less is likely to carry too small a camper given what you are used to.
Given you have mentioned having a 4x4, getting into smaller and remote area, etc, it sounds like you need a 4x4 truck, and if you are talking about remote areas then SRW instead of DRW. That also most likely means a hardside camper WITHOUT slides or big basement - i.e. a camper which will weight less, and sit lower - i.e. more of a traditional truck camper.
You'll probably want a long bed since the short bed will limit your camper options. Options like 8ft bed and double cab are nice, but both increase the wheelbase of the truck. I suspect this won't be a problem unless you desire to do serious offroad travel like Jefe4x4, and I suspect that isn't your intention.
Next you can find out the payload weight available on that spec of truck and start working out which non-slide campers will be suitable for that payload. Bear in mind you need to add a lot of weight onto the manufacturer's 'dry weight' to get to the weight you will be carrying. Some people find they have 1000 lbs of additional weight, and if you are going to be driving offroad you probably don't want to be too much over your maximum weight limit (and certainly not over your individual axle weight limits). So don't just think "hey, I've got a 3000 lb payload, there's a camper with a 3000 lb dry weight - job done".
Then you can go and see some of the campers that will work with that weight restriction, and this is the real test - see if your wife is happy with their size, climbing up into the bed, storage, bathroom, etc. If she isn't after you have looked at a few then you need to start looking at the bigger campers, but then you will be talking about DRW and starting to limit where you can take the camper.
Good luck with your choice.