I just bolted the rear of the camper to the truck bed (1/2" bolt going through the plywood floor of the camper, through the 2x6" pressure treated base, through the rubber mat, and through the truck bed). Secured with large washers and also using a metal plate both inside the camper and underneath the bed. I feel more confident now, knowing it's bolted in the back.
I'll still use the tie-downs front and back.
QUESTION: how tight should I have those tie-downs? Turnbuckle turned by hand then by wrench until the chain is nice and taut? I'm just concerned that too tight may not be good. Please advise. Thanks.
are you bolting the camper to the bed, (which may be only lightly attached to the frame) or to the frame (or other structure)?
I'd also be curious to know what the manufacturer thinks of this.
ie, how strong is the joint between the floor and sides?
As with the usual loading, it would seem that the lower joint is lightly loaded and in compression, (and lightly built) and with the floor bolted, now the joint will (can be) highly loaded and in tension.
Are you going to find the floor ripped out after going over harsh bumps and or corners a bit too fast?
QUESTION: how tight should I have those tie-downs? Turnbuckle turned by hand then by wrench until the chain is nice and taut? I'm just concerned that too tight may not be good. Please advise
Absolutely not! Hand tight only.
Thanks! I have the Torklift basic springload kit on all four corners, and their instructions are to tighten enough to pre-load the springs with a gap about 1/8". Mine are more than hand-tightened now and there is no pre-load evident on the springload units. Not sure how much pressure would be required to pre-load those suckers, but I'm not about to try...
Anyway, I'll loosen the lock nuts, hand-tighten the turnbuckles, and reset the lock nuts, based on the advice given.
This is an Alaskan camper. When lowered for towing you do not have the large leaning moment that you get with a traditional camper. One of the plus features of the Alaskan. I would recommend double nutting the bed bolts.