RV.Net Open Roads Forum: Truck Campers: Driving With a Pop Up vs Hardside??

RV Blog

  |  

RV Sales

  |  

Campgrounds

  |  

RV Parks

  |  

RV Club

  |  

RV Buyers Guide

  |  

Roadside Assistance

  |  

Extended Service Plan

  |  

RV Travel Assistance

  |  

RV Credit Card

  |  

RV Loans

Open Roads Forum Already a member? Login here.   If not, Register Today!  |  Help

Newest  |  Active  |  Popular  |  RVing FAQ Forum Rules  |  Forum Posting Help and Support  |  Contact  

Search:   Advanced Search

Search only in Truck Campers

Open Roads Forum  >  Truck Campers

 > Driving With a Pop Up vs Hardside??

Reply to Topic  |  Subscribe  |  Print Topic  |  Post New Topic  | 
Page of 4  
Next
Sponsored By:
Dagwood_55

Atkins, Ar

Full Member

Joined: 09/28/2007

View Profile


Offline
Posted: 03/23/20 01:36pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Currently drive a '18 Ford 350 LWB, SRW. What is the feeling between driving a 2000lb (OEM Wt) popup vs a 3000lb hardside?? Daylight and Dark?? Or something you get used to and then no big deal?? We do travel down NF roads, but nothing off road. Not wanting a white knuckle drive...

Thinking a Northstar 850SC popup vs a Northside Larado SC Hardside.

thanks

SidecarFlip

SE Michigan

Senior Member

Joined: 10/09/2016

View Profile


Offline
Posted: 03/23/20 02:12pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Pros and cons both ways. I'm on favor of the pop up going down the road. Had a hardside Lance and my truck is similar to yours but lots older. The pop up is like having nothing in the bed at all, especially in the wind or passing trucks plus I like mine because it fits in the garage when not in use.

Hardsides 'feel' more secure when you are inside and with a hardside there is more storage and appliances can be mounted higher.

Pop ups have light years better ventilation, I didn't even get ac (and option) on mine, no need.

Pop up's will be lighter apples to apples as well.

Finally is the overall height issue. With a pop up, clearance is never an issue and because I run off road a lot, a pop up with it's low stowed height and lower Cg is a much better option for the wife and I.

Your mileage may vary however. They aren't for everyone.


2015 Backpack SS1500
1997 Ford 7.3 OBS 4x4 CC LB

Kayteg1

California > Nevada

Senior Member

Joined: 06/18/2015

View Profile


Offline
Posted: 03/23/20 02:19pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I was considering pop-up as 2nd camper when I would go alone, but researching the subject I found those comparisons.
Pop up is not much lighter than hardside. When you have much less space in popup, the lift mechanism shaves weigh saving tarp is giving on sides.
Popup soft sides have limited life prediction. Will you have it exposed to sun, like we do in Nevada, that will crack in matter of short years.
I had 2 different campers on my dually. The basement model was over a foot higher and also wider than old Lance.
I could drive 80 mph in semi truck tail wind with both of them just fine.
I keep my fuel consumption on fuelly and if fuel consumption due to extra foot is higher, not to degree it can make statistic.
Additional observation that once my new truck passed 25,000 miles, the mpg seem to go up by about 0.2. I always set CC at 60 mph with camper
Looks like engine is finally breaking-in.





Lwiddis

near Jawbone Canyon, CA

Senior Member

Joined: 08/12/2016

View Profile



Good Sam RV Club Member

Offline
Posted: 03/23/20 02:37pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Can you go potty in the Northstar when on the road without popping?


Winnebago 2101DS TT & 2020 Chevy Silverado 1500 LTZ Z71, 300 watts solar-parallel & MPPT, Trojan T-125s. TALL pole for flags. Prefer USFS, COE, BLM, NPS, TVA, USF&WS, state & county camps. Bicyclist! 14 year Army vet - 11B40 then 11A - (MOS 1542 & 1560)


jimh425

Western MT

Senior Member

Joined: 06/11/2006

View Profile





Online
Posted: 03/23/20 02:52pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

A popup is better at interstate speed which will result in better MPG. The shorter height also would be harder to hit a low limb if that matters where you drive. They are also usually a lot smaller. If a popup suits your needs, I don’t think you can go wrong.

I wouldn’t put too much stock in their weights until you put them both on a scale. Some manufacturers are closer than others and some include all equipment and some don’t include any options.


'10 Ford F-450, 6.4, 4.30, 4x4, 14,500 GVWR, '06 Host Rainer 950 Dbl Slide, Torklift Talon tiedowns, Glow Steps, and Fastguns. Bilstein 4600s, Firestone Air Bags, Hankook DH-01 225/19.5 Fs, Curt front hitch, Energy Suspension bump stops.


Dick_B

Palos Heights, IL USA

Senior Member

Joined: 07/10/2002

View Profile



Good Sam RV Club Member

Offline
Posted: 03/23/20 03:48pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Popup better while on the road. Hardside better at a campground. Compare how much time you are on the road vs how much time spent at a CG; no brainer.


Dick_B
2003 SunnyBrook 27FKS
2011 3/4 T Chevrolet Suburban
Equal-i-zer Hitch
One wife, two electric bikes (both Currie Tech Path+ models)

kohldad

Goose Creek, SC

Senior Member

Joined: 07/20/2004

View Profile



Good Sam RV Club Member

Offline
Posted: 03/23/20 04:42pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Since you have a good truck, I wouldn't worry about the weight difference. Yes the hardside will be a bit more unstable, but it shouldn't be bad at all. With the hardside, you may need to do a few minor suspension upgrades like heavier sway bar, stable loads etc.

I have a Lance 815 which is a bit lighter and not only do rough forest roads but also easy off-road trails.

I would be more concerned with how you plan on using it. If you travel all day and only stop at night, the pop-up may be a better option. But if you use the rig several times a day, then you will probably more satisfied with the hardside.


2015 Ram 3500 4x4 Crew Cab SRW 6.4 Hemi LB 3.73 (12.4 hand calc avg mpg after 92,000 miles with camper)
2004 Lance 815 (prev: 2004 FW 35'; 1994 TT 30'; Tents)


KD4UPL

Swoope, VA

Senior Member

Joined: 03/16/2008

View Profile



Good Sam RV Club Member

Offline
Posted: 03/23/20 05:01pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

A small hardside like you're looking at shouldn't be any big deal. My only comparison was an 8' pop-up to an 11' hard side. So yes, it was significantly heavier with more bounce and sway.
For my use, which is more traveling than camping, I much prefer the hardside camper. It is better insulated, more sound proof, and more secure. Anybody with a pocket knife can get right in a pop-up. Also, the hardside camper will have a ton more storage. We often stop at rest areas for lunch or stop in the middle of nowhere for my wife to use the bathroom. It would get real old having to raise and lower the roof for each and every quick stop.
If I was rock crawling or otherwise going off road a pop-up would be better both for weight, center of gravity, and overhead clearance.

JD5150

Anywhere

Senior Member

Joined: 06/18/2009

View Profile



Posted: 03/23/20 06:40pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Laredo SC is only 18 inches taller than 850sc pop up. Your truck will handle either one. Might need to do minor modification to the suspension with the hard side. If you need more headroom or more cabover headroom the SS is bigger. Wider and taller. I think by 5 inches taller. Making 6'9 interior height and more headroom in the cabover area

jsc253

Orange County, CA

New Member

Joined: 01/14/2004

View Profile


Offline
Posted: 03/23/20 09:23pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Dagwood,
I have 2016 F250SB Crew Cab and a Northstar TC650. Basically it is the 850 but a little shorter. I have never driven with a hardside camper but absolutely enjoy everything about the pop-up. I have been in heavy winds on the road and it handles well. If you frequent windy areas, it may be unnerving with the top up while you are camping. I've heard it can handle up to 40 mph winds but I dont think I would want to stay anywhere under those conditions.

The pop-ups do take a couple minutes to raise and lower the roof and have less storage. We use the camper all the time for lunch stops without raising the roof. We can sit at the table, access the fridge, use the furnace in cold weather, access and all the lower cabinets. I suspect on the 850, the toilet can be used too. On a side note, I have not had any problems with camper other than a third party light issue. Northstar quickly responded.

If you have further questions, contact me

Reply to Topic  |  Subscribe  |  Print Topic  |  Post New Topic  | 
Page of 4  
Next

Open Roads Forum  >  Truck Campers

 > Driving With a Pop Up vs Hardside??
Search:   Advanced Search

Search only in Truck Campers


New posts No new posts
Closed, new posts Closed, no new posts
Moved, new posts Moved, no new posts

Adjust text size:




© 2020 CWI, Inc. © 2020 Good Sam Enterprises, LLC. All Rights Reserved.