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Open Roads Forum  >  Truck Campers

 > I just bought my first camper, here are my plans. Advice?

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d3500ram

colorado

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Posted: 06/29/12 11:19pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Logan80 wrote:

...It does have an opening roof vent like most campers/trailers, it just didn't get in the pic. Also the side windows slide open like a truck canopy.

I like to try and foresee situations and prevent problems where possible. That said and in the interest of safety... if a person is inside the camper and someone else were to close the tailgate in the up position...

...would the occupant be able to get out?


2005 Dodge 3500 SRW, Qcab long bed, NV-6500, diesel, 4WD, Helwig, 9000XL,
Nitto 285/70/17 Terra Grapplers, Honda eu3000Is, custom overload spring perch spacers.
2008 NorthStar Arrow short bed.


Logan80

Spanaway, Washington

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Posted: 06/30/12 01:15am Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

No, you wouldn't without cutting one of the side screens out.

However, I already thought of that and bought a small master lock that can be locked into the side latch for the tailgate on the truck preventing it from closing all the way.

I have the lock and a keyring for it hanging on an eyebolt just inside the door of the camper.

When I get where I'm going and setup camp, I'll get the lock, put it in the tailgate, and put the key back inside the camper.

sabconsulting

High Wycombe, UK

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Posted: 06/30/12 01:23am Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Hi and welcome

Looks like a nice little camper and one that won't compromise your ability to get off road into the wilderness.

d3500ram wrote:


I like to try and foresee situations and prevent problems where possible. That said and in the interest of safety... if a person is inside the camper and someone else were to close the tailgate in the up position...

...would the occupant be able to get out?


Good point - all it needs is some teenagers to close the tailgate 'for a laugh' while you are sleeping inside. So I'd fabricate something simple to lock it open when inside.


Re. the bed I probably wouldn't bother actually hinging the pieces of plywood - I'd just cut two bits to the right size, then screw on the supports either side that the plywood rests on. That way you won't be struggling to fold up large pieces of plywood before getting them in and out of the back, and during the day you can simply slide one piece over the other - so you have one smaller shelf left to store your bedding on / use as a table, and room to sit inside.

I say this because when I had an ex-military truck I built a similar folding sleeping platform in the back with hinges, but it was a PITA folding it up and down and really cumbersome to get in and out.

Steve.


'07 Ford Ranger XLT Supercab diesel + '91 Shadow Cruiser - Sky Cruiser 1
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Logan80

Spanaway, Washington

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Posted: 06/30/12 01:30am Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Good point on not making it fold. I suppose in really would be a lot easier to deal with if it were made of separate pieces. Wouldn't really need to have either of them attached, just sit them in place and lay out the bedding.

Bigfootchevy

Bancroft, Ontario, Canada

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Posted: 06/30/12 01:50am Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I hope everything works out for you and you have a great time with your camper.

Paul

whizbang

Kenmore, WA

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Posted: 06/30/12 07:59am Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Sweet little camper. Two things: 1) I would recommend removing the tailgate, and 2) Unless you are real short, the bed should go lengthwise. The earlier suggestion, to make a sliding bed instead of a hinging bed, is a good one.


Whizbang
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Logan80

Spanaway, Washington

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Posted: 06/30/12 01:13pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Why would you remove the tailgate? I can't see any drawbacks to having it installed, plus it makes a good table and entry into the camper since the door is so small.

d3500ram

colorado

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Posted: 06/30/12 02:22pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Logan80 wrote:

...I can't see any drawbacks to having it installed, plus it makes a good table and entry into the camper since the door is so small.

The tail gate will make a good table, but in my opinion it will not make a good entry into the camper You have a step bumper on the truck. This in my opinion is a better entry step into the camper. You will be stepping up and into the camper.

The tailgate will make for a "mini-deck" of sorts but you will need to on the tailgate before any "deck" features become apparent. Even then, your entry will require the "bowing" motion to get in the camper as opposed to the stepping into it from the bumper.

Try it both with and with out... your camping habits will tell you if it worth keeping on the truck.

Logan80

Spanaway, Washington

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Posted: 06/30/12 02:28pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I can see what you're saying. For me, the camper will basically be a dry place to sleep and store my gear. It's not tall enough to sit up on the sides without ducking down, so it's not really a place you'd want to hang out inside.

There won't be a lot of going in and out during the day I wouldn't imagine.

I was just going to buy a little step stool to keep with the camper and set it behind the tailgate when I setup camp.

jimh425

Western WA

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Posted: 06/30/12 02:43pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Years ago, I had friends with campers like that. They offset their beds to one side the length of the camper. It was basically a cot made out of 2x4s and used propane heaters for heat.


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