The larger the truck, the more conveniences that are available. We have a full bath, a large over-stuffed sofa, space for storage. Here, on Assateague Island, several hundred rigs of all sizes and shapes, except duallys, which aren't permitted, operate constantly. There are no serious problems. When, occasionally some one gets stuck, there is always help. You must air down in soft sand. I do 20 psi front,30 psi rear. We have two sets of wheels and tires. 16" Nitto Dune Grapplers for beach and local use(many here use them permanently) and 19.5" wheels for long distance, cross country.
Over sand travel is a very harsh environment. I have a small lawn sprinkler to rinse to bottom of our rig at the dump station as we depart. I use the non-potable rinse water. Although we have a set of air compressors on Assateague, I have a small one carried onboard, if needed. In the April issue of Truck Camper Magazine on line, we did an article on camping on the Beach at Assateague Island National Seashore.
For us , camping on the beach is one of the major advantages of TCing!
What a great idea to wash underside of truck with a sprinkler, I will try for sure. Air down to 20 in the front and 30 in the back? I tried to 35 and was scare the tire could come off the rim. I have the original tire and wheel, 275/70/18, can I bring them down to 20?
Everything work wonderful - no complaints- except the mattress got to do something about that before our mega-trip here in two weeks!
Memory foam topper fixed ours. Easily the best upgrade we did.
We bought a memory foam too, it was great in the warm climate, but when we went for a trip below freezing, the foam was hard as rock. We did warm up the camper before we got in, but heat will not get to the bed. It took a good half hour in the bed for the foam to soak up our body heat, going softer as we where moving around.
We returned the memory foam and bought a 3 inch feather matt over top our regular matress, warm in cold weather, cool in warm weather
There is not too many choice on fuel on your way up, unless you have a very big tank, you have to plan to fuel up at bigger village / town, in between could be very expensive.
Fuel is cheaper in Alberta, Fuel is expensive in BC, so fill up to the top at Grande Prairie, then fill up at Dawson Creek BC to make it to Fort Nelson, do not fill up between Dawson creek and Fort Nelson, very expensive in between.
280 miles, Fill up at Fort Nelson.
315 miles, Fill up at Watson Lake,
Fuel is very expensive at Muncho Lake BC, Liard hotspring should have fuel at Liard Hotspring Lodge, maybe a little cheaper if you cannot make it to Watson Lake
Then Teslin, fuel about same price as Watson Lake.
Whitehorse, fill up, then fill at Haines junction to make it to TOK, 290 miles, There should be fuel in Beaver Creek if you cannot make it to TOK.
Then, in AK, fill up in bigger towns. Fairbanks, Anchorage, Homer, Wasilla, Russian River, Kenai, Soldotna.
If you go up or down through Casiar Highway, fill up at Prince George, fill up in between, then Dease Lake and Upper Liard.
If you go up to Dawson YT, fuel up in Dawson, not at the Dempster Junction. Also fuel at Stewart Crossing.
If you go the Dalton Highway, there is not much choice, fill up at Fairbanks, then at Yukon river crossing, at Coldfoot, then Deadhorse.
HAVE A WONDERFULL TIME, fill up and do not look at the bill, just enjoy!
We do not have a licence plate in front in Quebec and I traveled across USA for the past 30 years. It was never a problem. You can see the back one from a distance behind the truck but for example when crossing the border, they cannot see the plate with the camera, so I have to tell them the number, unless they go out and check it out. This was never a problem either.
Some people get so good at loading and unloading that they even take off the camper while in a campground, then can go off roading, or use the truck for sightseeing.
The newer campers have a much better support system internally, so the jacks are attached to something strong, and not likely to fall off the camper.
Because of the dual rear wheels, you would require extensions for the front jacks, and the rear jacks are closer to the camper body. Now they even have electric jacks, with a remote control, so you can basically walk around the camper and raise and lower each jack with the controller, and it goes very easy.
When I had my camper, I only removed the camper a dozen times or so, to use the truck separetly, and eventually replaced it with a class C, but it had a limited towing capacity, so I upgraded to a Bounder 30E. It has a generous 100 gallon fresh water tank, the rear overhang is not to long, and can tow something substantial, even though Fleetwood only recommends towing 3,500 pounds. Ford rated the F-53 chassis at 26,000 GCVWR, so I stay well under that rating. The frame extension is the limiting factor in Fleetwoods 3,500 pound towing limit on the 97 and earlier RV's. After Ford went to 19.5" rims in 1999, the towing limit went up to 5,000 pounds, mainly because the GVWR was higher, and cargo rating was high enough to carry an extra 750 pounds of hitch weight, should the owner decide to tow a cargo box trailer with toys, or a horse trailer.
If you don't plan on off roading, then a class C or class A might be much better for boondocking. There is a lot more space for storage, water capacity is much higher, GVWR is high enough that they normally carry a minimum of 50 gallons of fresh water, and have a 20+ gallon black water tank, and 40+ grey water tank, so you can take daily showers.
You do not require to buy the longest possible class A, it will not be a great match to boondocking, as the rear overhang can get hung up on a ditch crossing a minor creek, or bottom out on a pot hole infested forest road. Also longer does not go well around a switchback, or fit well into a small town skinny roads, or parking lot at the local 7-11.
With my 27' class C, I never towed a car, mainly because the engine was a little small for the class C, it was a GMC with a 350" engine, Ford always came with a more powerful 460" V8 or now the 6.8L V10 making over 300 HP.
With my 30' Bounder, it has a 250 HP V8 460" engine, and does not lack power. I towed a Manx dune buggy, then a Honda CRV, Ford Edge, now a Manx Buggy again, or with a tow dolly can take my Dodge Caravan handicap van, or the Edge 4 wheels down. Once I even towed a 27' cargo trailer to a drag race in Bowling Green KY.
So consider that the camper will be limiting. You probably will be lucky to have a 30 gallon fresh water tank, (240 pounds) a smaller refrigerator, limited ability to sleep over 4 people, limited to carry a total of 5 or 6 passengers in the cab, further limited if you want to bring a dog in the cab (but they can ride in the camper). Food storage is limited to what fits. Not really a great place to store bikes or folding chairs. You are limited to about 2 solar panels in the 100 watt size before the roof becomes to crowded.
With my Bounder, I took off the hitch, welded to it an additional 2" receiver on both the passenger and drivers side near the frame mounts, so I can install two bike racks, or carry my dog cart on one side, the bikes on the other.
I can camp up to 2 weeks, taking daily showers, have a 59 gallon black water tank, that can last a month (I have full timed for the past 7 years). Have huge storage compartments for at least 5 chairs, carry a lot of stuff like tools, the water tanks are in a heated basement, so camping in 19F weather is fine.
This is what I am lurking at, a class A for boonducking instead of my truck camper, much more room ect. The thing I was concerned about was the capacity to camp in colder temps. I see you have a heated basement. I would like double pane window too. 30 foot seems to be the ideal lenght. But I need at least a sofa/bed so you can sit and relax. Probably one day this is what I will be buying.
Ok, if I run a wire from the Altenator, do I need some sort of regulator in between? Is there a danger of overcharging the batteries?
Msiminoff I like the lift gate connector, why do you run 2 wires?
Golden HVAC, is the isolator a "regulator?
Westend, I do not know which type of relay I have, I don't know where it is on the truck.
My son has a Dodge Diesel and he wants to install something too, we are going on a USA circle tour this fall, so we need juice!
Thank you all
Hi, I would like more amps to charge the TC batteries while traveling, I do mostly boonducking. I do have a solar but when there is no sun and during cold days, using the furnace, it uses too much batteries.
I would like to know if someone tried a bigger wire from the truck charge realy, mine is a Ford Diesel F350. With the original truck's setup, I think I get at the most around 2 or 3 amps.
Thanks for your inputs.
It was a very scary moment, could not turn around, the traffic all stopped behing, probably watching to post on You Tube. I was told, after, that in New York, you calculate your height from the axle, midle of the wheel??
There was a few guys beeping their horn when I got on the parkway, I tought I had no lights or some like that, then realized my error when I got to the overpass.
After that, I pulled out in a "not so inviting district" of New York, somwhere in the bronx, 12 foot enclosed trailer behinh, night time, I tought I would never got out, overpass everywhere, small streets you can hardly turn a corner, my truck's GPS AND my laptop GPS on to find my way out, oh man, never again.
Almost got the camper hook on an overpass in New York, scared the hell out of me. Overpass says 9.1 feet each side, don't know how I got trough. Be very carefull if driving in New York area, many oberpass with low clearance.
Also got the truck camper tie down hook on the camper jack while pulling off.
Worked on the truck bed, mine was all dented and the camper did not sit properly. I installed a plywood mounted on 2x3 so I can put the ramp for snow sled for winter use.
Tomorow I will be making some side boxes to fill up with the "just in case" stuff we never need on a trip!!! but that we allways bring anyway!
Nice but we get so ripped off for shipping to Canada, it is like over $100, plus probably paying custom and taxes.
I bought some cheap load binder, added some chain and turnbuckle, works good and fast but no fancy look! I had them for many years no problem.
Sounds like the maybe same thing as HERE
Sound similar to your case, man I hope that doesn't happen to my Ford.
It is not the same bumb, mine is in the middle, from one side to the other, over the wheels.