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Topic: Ideas for "saw horses" to hold TC off truck.

Posted By: realter on 10/15/10 08:24pm

I need some ideas on how to hold my 3,000 lb. truck camper steady when it is up on the legs but off the truck. I would like to store it at about 36" up, so I don't have to jack it all the way up and down when loading it on and off of the truck. It is stored inside. 55 gallon steel barrels don't seem too appropriate any more. Thanks for any suggestions.


Posted By: rgraham on 10/15/10 08:40pm

Have them made out of steel, either do it yourself if you can weld and have a welder, or hire some one to do it they would be much better than made out of wood,


Richard
1987 ford f250 6.9 diesel
1997 Innsbruck by Gulf Stream 28ft fifth wheel with slide
and the wife and co-pilot Trudy



Posted By: trails2004 on 10/15/10 08:43pm

I would look beyond the term " saw horse" - Place 4 automotive grade jack stands on all four corners of the TC. Place 4 x 4 lateral supports on the jack stands to support the camper- jack stands should be at a minimum of 2500 each-

Saw horse's just dont work-------


Posted By: trails2004 on 10/15/10 08:47pm

realter wrote:

I...... would like to store it at about 36" up, so I don't have to jack it all the way up and down when loading it on and off of the truck. .....


If you store it up 36 inches- that is 36 inches between you and the ground----BAD IDEA- ----use the jacks to lift the camper-----and lower the camper to someting that is closer to 10 -12 inches off the ground------------------------ Does it cost you more to store the camper 36 inches or 3 feet feet off the ground ??????? Is is this more conveinent for you??


Posted By: Little Kopit on 10/15/10 08:53pm

17 - 20" high

Rectangular boxes a tad wider than the TC. Mine take winds up to 90 km or 56 mph. Yep, made them in 2008 and winds have been that high when we had the ends of hurricane. The rectangles give the supports stability.

[emoticon]


& I, I took the road less travelled by.

My Photo Album, featuring Labrador 2006



Posted By: Nana of 11 on 10/15/10 08:55pm

we saw a setup on a small trailer. Trailer wasn't much bigger than the 4x8 of a truck bed. It was at a dealer, pretty cool. Looked pretty easy to move.


Posted By: PapPappy on 10/15/10 09:01pm

trails2004 wrote:

Does it cost you more to store the camper 36 inches or 3 feet feet off the ground


Can't say that I see how one would be better than the other[emoticon] Since they are both the same[emoticon]

If you want it high, what is wrong with the drums? I've seen plenty of them on drums, but just to make things a bit more stable, you might want to attach angle-iron between them, and 2x8 across the tops, so that the TC doesn't rest on the lips of the drums.

The Jack stands works too.....but, it's really a case of what is easier for you to locate and afford[emoticon]


Bill & Claudia / DD Jenn / DS Chris / GS MJ
Dogs: Sophie, Abby, Brandy, Kahlie, Annie, Maggie, Tugger & Beau ">
RIP: Cookie, Foxy & Gidget @ Rainbow Bridge.">
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Posted By: bldrbuck on 10/15/10 09:18pm

I have always lower the truck camper to the ground. I recently saw on stored on straw bales. There were enough bales to support the entire bottom and it was tied down.


93 Ford F350 Turbo Diesel, DRW, Crew Cab. PullRite Hitch. 35' King of the Road 5er, 192 Watts Solar, 2800 Watt Yamaha Generator, 1750 Watt Inverter, 2 Trogan T105 Batteries, Me, my wife and 2 maltize furkids.


Posted By: sleepy on 10/15/10 09:25pm

My saw horses are 40" high, made of 4"x 4" treated posts...

When my jacks are fully extended the bottom of the camper is 42" off the ground.

I can leave the back of the camper on the rear saw horse, lift the front 1" or 2"... remove the front sawhorse... back under 80% of the way... lift the rear of the camper an inch or two... remove the rear saw horse and finsish backing up.

No sweat on my forehead when the wind is blowing.

Works well for me.

Sleepy... but not all of the time!


2003 Lance 1161,/slideout/AGM batteries/255W Solar/propane generator/Sat dish/2 Fantastic Fans/AC/winter pkg
AirFoil, Trimetric, LED lights, Platcat vent heat

2003GMC K3500 LT/Crewcab/duramax diesel/allison/dually/4x4/OnStar/front reciever mounted spare


Posted By: Raften on 10/15/10 10:42pm

Plywood X's interlocking with some plywood on top.


Posted By: realter on 10/15/10 11:01pm

Does anybody have any pictures?


Posted By: Budster on 10/15/10 11:14pm

realter wrote:

Does anybody have any pictures?


3/4 plywood, trim to desired height

[image]

[image]

[image]

I used 2/4s across to compensate for angle on the driveway


Posted By: kcabpilot on 10/16/10 01:02am

realter

This is exactly what I do, bought the 29 inch sawhorses at Home Depot and put 4 ft length 4x4's and a 2x6 on top to bring it up to about 34 inches. That's pretty close to my bed height so two cranks on the jacks, pull the horses out and back the truck in. Same drill when unloading.

The load is split between the jacks and sawhorses and the camper is rock steady. The Burro brand horses are rated at 2500 lbs each. Another advantage, aside from the ease of loading and unloading is I can walk under the cabover without ducking.

[image]

[image]


1994 Lance 990 on 1997 F350 PSD Dually "Rhino Haunches"


Posted By: AnEv942 on 10/16/10 01:07am

My "saw horses"- shown with end grain primed before painting. I copied from anothers idea several years ago, just adding thru carrage bolts. What makes these 'saw horses' work, in my eye, is cut angles in top legs and back runner.
As seen in end view pic, as bearing wieght applied actaully makes them stronger as it forces the legs into center. 2x6 legs enough to resist side to side. Full weight on them and zero rock, BUT in actual use I only lower enough to keep camper from moving on legs, the campers legs just have a wider footprint, stiil carry most of the weight.

[image]
[image]
these are also pressure treated, I was going to add a center leg each end but the shallow angle 15d, this seems to be ok, For 48"
or greater leg spread, think I would. Certainly not carry alongs Mark


01 Ford F250 4x4 DRW Diesel, 01 Elkhorn 9U
Our camper projects page



Posted By: trails2004 on 10/16/10 07:30am

Quote:

Does it cost you more to store the camper 36 inches or 3 feet feet off the ground


Quote:

Can't say that I see how one would be better than the other[emoticon] Since they are both the same[emoticon]


The key word is or meaning the same.

Quote:

If you want it high, what is wrong with the drums? I've seen plenty of them on drums,


So is a camper more prone to catching wind at 4 feet off the ground???


Posted By: Raminwyo on 10/16/10 07:46am

You might call Outfitter campers, in Longmont Co. I have seen some of the ones they make. They are made of steel and can put wheels on them if you want.


Posted By: trails2004 on 10/16/10 08:22am

Quote:

You might call Outfitter campers, in Longmont Co. I have seen some of the ones they make. They are made of steel and can put wheels on them if you want.


Do they make them ??? or do they use these ?

Camper Dollies


Posted By: sleepy on 10/16/10 05:30pm

Sawhorses under a camper don't need to hold the campers weight... the campers jacks do that quiet well...

There are only to stabilize...to keep any sideways motions or vibrations from making us uncomfortable.

Budsters idea is very good... and easy to store. Light weight and inexpensive. No hardware or tools needed to use them.

I have tall, heavy sawhorses for another purpose... and use them when I take the camper off the truck

... which is only a week or two a year.

I'd suggest that you follow Jerry's(budster)lead... he has actually owned a truck camper.

To make them as tall as you want would take 2 sheets of 3/4" or even 1" treated plywood.

sleepy


Posted By: realter on 10/16/10 07:11pm

Do you think Budsters plywood could be as high as 39 inches? I would wonder if the plywood might buckle under the weight of 1,500 lbs+/-? on each. I also like the 2,500 lb capacity saw horses from Home Depot. I will have to check those out also. Otherwise I would have to have a carpenter build me a set, but buying pre-built would probably be cheaper.


Posted By: sleepy on 10/16/10 07:40pm

realter wrote:

Do you think Budsters plywood could be as high as 39 inches? I would wonder if the plywood might buckle under the weight of 1,500 lbs+/-? on each. I also like the 2,500 lb capacity saw horses from Home Depot. I will have to check those out also. Otherwise I would have to have a carpenter build me a set, but buying pre-built would probably be cheaper.


They are only to stabilize

not to bear the weight of the camper... the jacks will continue to hold up the camper


Posted By: sleepy on 10/17/10 12:13pm

These will hold a camper but you have to call a fork truck to move them around, 25' of 4" X 4" in each one.

i used the old 2"x4" sawhorses beside the new ones for many years... now they gallop.

[image]

[image]


Posted By: KMLsquared on 10/17/10 12:16pm

sleepy wrote:

My saw horses are 40" high, made of 4"x 4" treated posts...

When my jacks are fully extended the bottom of the camper is 42" off the ground.

I can leave the back of the camper on the rear saw horse, lift the front 1" or 2"... remove the front sawhorse... back under 80% of the way... lift the rear of the camper an inch or two... remove the rear saw horse and finsish backing up.

No sweat on my forehead when the wind is blowing.

Works well for me.

Sleepy... but not all of the time!


Mine are 38.5" tall. I don't like having to raise and lower it much, too shakey for me.
Made mine tall enough to park my flat bed under the camper to save room. they also weight just under 100lbs. each.
[image]

[image]

* This post was edited 10/17/10 12:24pm by KMLsquared *


2002 HO 6spd LB QC 4x4. Edge Juice w/Att 4" str8 pipe AFE int Skyjacker D25 springs w/10" Fox Shox 2.0 Thuren track bar PSC Steering box w/DSS. Fox Steering Damper w/custom mount.

2003 Rampage 33TB
2002 Banshee
1969 Baja



Posted By: ardis8500 on 10/18/10 11:08am

I use (6) stacks of (3) concrete blocks each, placed at the front, middle and rear of the camper, 3 per side and (2) P.T. 4x4's lengthwise to the camper sitting on all (3) stacks of CMU. I have them about 1' in from each side and lower the camper onto it. My camper has steel strips about every 2' on the bottom going width-wise so the strips handle the width span. The jacks are down for stability but the majority of the weight is on the blocks. I could use another row of block to keep from jacking it up more than I need to, but I have a portable canopy that keeps it covered and even with the lid down, there's just enough room. It wouldn't fit with the extra row of blocks, unless I raised the canopy.

Side note: When loading or unloading, I use the blocks under the legs of the canopy to space it up so the camper fits. When the truck is out from under it, the blocks and 4x4's go back in and the canopy comes back down. It's a real procedure and workout. I wish I had a tall shed for it, but it's at my parent's place and I don't pay for storage, so I'm not going to complain too much.


2002 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 HD LT, 2WD, 6.0L
Home-made belly bar up front and Tork-Lifts in the rear
2nd Hand Happijac spring loaded turnbuckles.
1996 Palomino Bronco B-1200 Pop-Up TC
1976 Jeep CJ-7 - usually on trailer behind truck.


Posted By: BeatCJ on 10/18/10 11:39am

I built a set similar to AnEv942's, based on his pattern from a thread he posted. Mine have just a bit more spread to make me feel like they are more sturdy. While I like my camper low, if you follow his pattern, you could make them as tall as you would like. I would bet you could cut the legs 48" long, they would be close to 36" high. My wife likes the camper low so it's easier to get into when she's loading it, it's just a long step to the camper bumper. I span the gap on mine with 2x10s, and my camper feels more sturdy on the "camperhorses" when I am moving around in it than it does in the truck. I take some of the strain on my jacks, too.

If I planned to unload when I was camping, I could haul mine, they feel like they weigh less than a 40 lb sack of dog food.


Gordon
Now
2001 GMC 3500 DRW, Duramax
2002 ALJO 196LT
Old
1987 F-350 XLT Lariat SRW 6.9
1986 Western Wilderness Alpine Dinette 11


Posted By: AnEv942 on 10/19/10 12:00pm

And mine were patterned on Kodiak K99s just to give credit, with suggestions to use bolts since mine are taller. Allthough Ive used mine to hold camper while changing out jack brackets, restating what others have, they're not meant to hold camper, only stablize-keep from swaying while stored.

Kodiak K99 thread
Noted 1 of the pics url is incomplete http://pic15.picturetrail.com/VOL628/2685851/5365360/68973374.jpg


Posted By: Budster on 10/19/10 01:15pm

ardis8500 wrote:

I use (6) stacks of (3) concrete blocks each, placed at the front, middle and rear of the camper, 3 per side and (2) P.T. 4x4's lengthwise to the camper sitting on all (3) stacks of CMU.


Well I used to use this method (I had extra blocks from a wall project) Then the '94 earthquake hit (Northridge California) When I got home if found that the blocks disintegrated and the camper was laying on it's side. The jacks pulled out of the camper at the brackets (hydraulic) but did not bend, those hydraulic jacks are strong! If you do use the cement blocks be sure to use them with the holes vertical (as if you were building a wall), on their sides they have no strength!

realter asked if he could make the plywood Xs 39", yes, this is a very stable unit once put together. You still need the jacks to hold most of the weight (as Sleepy mentioned). One advantage is that you can lay them in the truck bed and take them camping with you with the camper on top of them!


Posted By: Berticus on 10/19/10 02:59pm

When I had my Caribou camper I made 2 stands that was the height of my 93 chevy. I had to then add some 4x4 when I got my 2000 ford. here a few pic's of the stands. 7 Pumps on the jacks and I was ready to load on the truck. I only have these pic as I gave them to the guy how bought the camper, so can not measure them for you.

front up close
[image]

Side up close
[image]

overall pic, note I have solid cement blocks for the jack stands.
[image]
Good Luck and Happy Camping, Robert

* This post was edited 10/19/10 03:10pm by Berticus *


The Setup:
96' Serro Scotty 25'Dodge,4x4,Diesel,Class-C, 86 20' Chris Craft LTD.



Posted By: realter on 10/19/10 07:26pm

That link to the Kodiak K99 thread was very interesting.I wonder what happened to some of those "oldtimers"


Posted By: realter on 10/24/10 10:10pm

I found a set of sawhorses at Harbor Freight, 1,000 lb capacity for $15. Having never purchased anyhing there, I posted on "Around the campfire" for advice on HFrt. products, since the question actually has nothing to do with truck campers anymore. Please, respond on that thread if you are able to help me out with good advice. Thanks.


Posted By: ~DJ~ on 10/25/10 07:30am

I went with a pair of these from Home Depot. Metal, adj height and foldable for storage. The pair is rated at 2400# which is more than adequate for my 1600# TC.


'17 Class C 22' Conquest on Ford E 450 with V 10. 4000 Onan, twin Trojan T 145s, 400 watts solar.


Posted By: Atchafalaya_man on 10/25/10 08:05am

realter wrote:

..... I would wonder if the plywood might buckle under the weight of 1,500 lbs+/-? on each.....


Fear of buckling is just 'worry'. Wood on end-grain, at a 90 degree angle, is very strong in compression, as long as it's stiff enough not to buckle as you say.. And, who raises their camper's LEGS totally off the ground?

The 'x's of 3/4" plywood are the equivalent of setting your camper on ELEVEN 4x4 deck posts on end.

1" plywood compares to almost SIXTEEN deck posts. 1/2" plywood drops it to about nine posts on end, and 1/4" plywood is like saw horses made from four 4x4's and 1/8" plywood is like horses made from 2x4's but we're getting past reasonable at on the last two thicknesses.

I have 1/2" x's by the way...a compromise that's more than adequate, and really, probably overkill, even at that thickness.


Posted By: realter on 11/22/10 11:12pm

Thanks for all the replys. I ended up getting 4 on sale at Menards for $9.99 each. They are steel Ebco brand, and rated at 1,000#'s each. These newer ones have rounded edges, so hopefully I won't be getting cuts on the sharp edges.


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