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 > Purchasing a truck camper dilemma

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S Davis

Western WA

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Posted: 06/29/19 03:03pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I have a 2013 Chevy 2500HD DA, my card in the glove box says 1607lbs. I haul a 3000lb work cap with upgraded shocks, wheels, tires and air bags, truck handles like a caddy.

sljohnson1938

Mount Airy, NC - USA

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Posted: 06/29/19 03:43pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I have not read all the replies, so, have you considered a pop-up TC ?.


1999 Dodge 3500 CTD dually
Ham radio - WU4S

KD4UPL

Swoope, VA

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Posted: 06/29/19 04:21pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

All three of my TC/truck combos over the last 15 years have been over the GVWR of the truck by 700 pounds, 1,200 pounds, and 1,700 pounds. They have not been over axle or tire ratings. I've enjoyed thousands of trouble free miles of travel. The sticker in the glove box assumes you have a 150 pound person in every seat position in the truck. That's why it's lower than the door sticker.
RVers seem to be the only truck using segment that worry so much about GVWR (for better or worse). Farmers, ranchers, hot-shot truckers, contractors, and TC owners routinely run their trucks over the GVWR as a matter of course. Last time I was loaded heavy with my 2005 Chevy dually work truck headed for a job site I decided to weigh the truck and trailer. I had about 12,600 pounds on the truck (GVWR is 11,400). It handled my flatbed with skid steer and attachments over several mountains to the job site and back multiple times. I've got 248,000 miles on the truck and most of it's life it has been over GVWR. It's been the most dependable, reliable vehicle I've ever owned.
300 pounds? Please.

guidry

Texas Cajun

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Posted: 06/29/19 07:00pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

It wouldn’t cost much to add another leaf spring to your rear axles.

ajcc

Michigan

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Posted: 06/29/19 08:54pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

guidry wrote:

It wouldn’t cost much to add another leaf spring to your rear axles.

I only know the basics when it comes to vehicles. If I were too add an extra spring would that increase my payload capacity? So far from some messages I've received it sounds like I need to do the following,
Add a leaf spring and/or(?) airbags.
Add a sway bar
Ensure tires and wheels are rated properly, upgrade if not.
Make sure I don't go over the axel limit, I'm guessing theres no fix for this other than a different truck.

I have a buddy who can help guide me when it comes to what I need to upgrade, so I plan on picking his brain a bit.

#1Flyboy

California

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Posted: 06/29/19 09:45pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

...... I’ve got the LIGHTEST Arctic Fox (865) on a 2019 GMC 3500 D/A Dually and I’m over GVWR by almost 1500#....... Go with the Dually..... Added a Hellwig Big Wig and I don’t know the camper is back there & handles REAL Good.... Or spend money on upgrades & then wish you’d have gotten a Dually...... I read several articles about folks spending bunches of money on upgrades & later after owning a Dually wish they had done it sooner.... I’m a HAPPY TC CAMPER.....( We’re fulltimers )

deserteagle56

Nevada

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Posted: 06/29/19 11:10pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I too was hesitant about the size of a dually. Now that I've driven one for several years it doesn't bother me at all running mine around town doing errands. And mine is a 6 speed manual! Keep in mind that on a SRW the mirrors are the widest part of the truck...on a dually those rear fenders are about the width of the mirrors on your SRW cab so if the front fits the rear will too! I find the length (mine is a crew cab with an 8' bed) more of a limitation than the width - it is longer than most marked parking spots. If I can I make sure I park where I can drive forward when leaving because if there are vehicles close on either side I find I can't back up far enough to turn and drive away without running into the cars parked behind me.


1996 Bigfoot 2500 9.5 on a 2004 Dodge/Cummins dually


zcookiemonstar

Midwest

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Posted: 06/29/19 11:14pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Have you actually looked at a Lance 650? Don't just look at the pictures. They look a lot bigger in pictures. You need to actually get inside with the all the people you plan to travel with. Sit down, lay on the bed, have the cook get in the kitchen with the other people there. Make sure the bathroom works for you go in there sit down close the door. There are many layouts for campers get inside them see what will work best then decide what you need for a truck. Don't just buy what you think will work for your truck. The camper has to work for you and once you buy it you can't return it it will cost you a lot of money.

valhalla360

No paticular place.

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Posted: 06/30/19 08:58am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

ajcc wrote:

There are a few things with the TT I ended up not liking.
- Went too long, 34 Ft (should have probably gone with a 5th wheel at that point)
- I don't enjoy how it feels on the road, was used to our gooseneck horse trailer
- My grandparents are planning on going out west (Montana, Wyoming, etc.) They'll be staying at campsites for only a night as they mostly enjoy sightseeing. I feel like the TT would be a burden compared to a TC.

We also want to explore the US and Canada, and we don't plan at staying at one campsite for an extended period, we'll only stay to rest for a night before continuing on.
We're also considering tent camping either RTT or something like the REI Kingdom.

I don't mind the TT if we're staying at a campsite for an extended period but we're not doing that currently.


I think you are throwing the baby out with the bath water. A smaller TT or 5er will tow much easier but provide a lot more living space. (alternatively a small Class C could work but then you get into the question of TOADs)

Have you done extended travels before? Lots of new full timers get frustrated because they are constantly on the move and it gets tiring...after a few months they give up if they don't slow down.


Tammy & Mike
Ford F250 V10
2008 Copper Canyon 5er
Catalac Catamaran 34'
Full Time spliting time between boat and 5er


ajcc

Michigan

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Posted: 06/30/19 09:12am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

valhalla360 wrote:


I think you are throwing the baby out with the bath water. A smaller TT or 5er will tow much easier but provide a lot more living space. (alternatively a small Class C could work but then you get into the question of TOADs)

Have you done extended travels before? Lots of new full timers get frustrated because they are constantly on the move and it gets tiring...after a few months they give up if they don't slow down.


We have done a few extended stays and we did use the truck to drive around a bit to go sightseeing which is a concern with the TC.

We haven't looked at the Lance in person yet since it's a few hours south. The final decision really relies on the up coming trip to the dealership. If we think it's too small then a smaller 5th wheel (something like the escape) will most definitely pop into the picture.

A year ago we did look at a short Jayco fifth wheel, I believe it was the 25.5 reok and we didn't see much issues with it but I wasn't truly looking at the time.

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