Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 20 of 28

Thread: pickup camper advice...

  1. #1

    Default pickup camper advice...

    Okay, considering buying a used/older cabover camper for our '87 F-250 ex-slope diesel pickup. Completely stock longbed 4X4. Did check out the other topics for campers and even more interested in getting one.

    1. What would be max size/weight for this stock truck to haul?
    2. Also thinking of getting an alum. boat for Kenai river/light salt use to tow behind; do you need an extended type receiver hitch if pulling the boat while camper is in the truck?
    3. Intended use would be a summer base camp for 2 guys to live out of for 3 weeks

    There seemed to be quite a few on alaskaslist but can't pull up their website for some reason.

    thanks for any help/advice!
    Jim

  2. #2
    Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    Anchorage
    Posts
    3,246

    Default

    I know from personal experience the newer camper will fit your truck. That said I would still measure the tail gate, and the height of your cab to make sure the camper will fit. I had to redesign my new 99 ford ¾t, to make my camper fit.


  3. #3

    Default

    You know, I didn't consider the question of fit; just assumed that any cab over camper for a full size truck would fit a full size Ford or any other. I'll take note of that!

  4. #4
    Member Daveintheburbs's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2003
    Location
    Eagle River, AK
    Posts
    648

    Default

    Check your owner’s manual for the rated load capacity of your truck. Camper and any tongue weight on the hitch should be below that. The rated weight of a single rear wheel truck is usually whole lot lower than most folks think. That being said, you see a ton of folks grunting down the highway with an 11’ camper on a single rear wheel truck grossly overweight.

    Air bags can help by redistributing the load and fighting sway, but don’t give you extra weight above capacity.

    If you wind up with a larger than 8’ camper you will probably need a hitch extension. The extension will drop the rated capacity of your hitch.

    You should be able to put together a package that allows for a reasonably sized camper and a light boat. Good luck!

  5. #5

    Default

    Lots of good info Dave; I'm thinking of keeping things to a minimum in regards to size/weight; sounds like a 8' or so camper would suffice for my needs and still allow pulling a fairly light boat (probably something along the lines of a 16-18' Lund or Bayrunner for the Kenai). The truck is older and non-turbocharged but in decent mechanical condition; don't want to load it too crazily.

  6. #6

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Big Jim View Post
    Lots of good info Dave; I'm thinking of keeping things to a minimum in regards to size/weight; sounds like a 8' or so camper would suffice for my needs and still allow pulling a fairly light boat (probably something along the lines of a 16-18' Lund or Bayrunner for the Kenai). The truck is older and non-turbocharged but in decent mechanical condition; don't want to load it too crazily.
    The biggest thing with regards to weight is not getting it going, but safely getting it slowed down and stopped if/when needed. So many people overload their trucks or pull too big of trailers and don't think twice about it because they have enough power to get up to speed. With the added weight of the camper, you may want to look into possible improvements to the brake package on the truck.

  7. #7
    Member
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Posts
    6,031

    Default camper on pickup

    Solid truck, you can haul all but the strangely-huge campers with 3 tip outs. No worries.

    Extension: yes, do get one that will make your trailer ball visible again, otherwise even if you can successfully hook up, you'll crash into yourself on turns.

    Tires: go to a E rated tire immediately.

    Wiring: you need a plug inside your p/u bed, and some kind of splitter to make both that and your existing trailer lights plug both work at the same time. I paid the trailer guys in Anchorage to do mine, so I'm still dumb about what's involved in diy on this.

    Tie downs: Don't mess around on this one. Get real frame mounted tie downs for the front, not the dumb easy2install ones that merely mount to the sheet metal of your truck bed. Rear ones can go to your bumper; no problem there, but you got to mount the mounts, so you can shackle the camper securely to your truck.

    And if you sag: after doing all of the above, if you're draggin' tail while the camper is on, go get airbags for your rear suspension; I love mine; they work great.

    I'm pushing the envelope a bit myself by hauling a wet (two sinks, toilet & shower, H/C running water) camper on a 1/2 ton Toyota truck. And I also sometimes also pull a flatbed with either 2 ATVs on it, or one huge canoe plus one ATV. But it does work well and I'd not do it any different if given another chance. I get double your mileage, with camper on.

  8. #8
    Member 6XLeech's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    Eagle River
    Posts
    2,162

    Default Gvwr?

    Quote Originally Posted by Big Jim View Post
    Okay, considering buying a used/older cabover camper for our '87 F-250 ex-slope diesel pickup. Completely stock longbed 4X4. Did check out the other topics for campers and even more interested in getting one.
    1. What would be max size/weight for this stock truck to haul? Jim
    I think the bottom line number you want is the Gross Vehicle Weight Rating, or GVWR.
    Some (maybe all) pickups will have a sticker inside the door frame, or sometimes in the glove compartment that will tell you the GVWR for your vehicle as configured. Although some websites will give you a figure for the truck, the sticker number is the one that matters.

    GVWR is the total weight (camper, truck, fuel, water, passengers, groceries, etc) for your truck's frame/suspension/drive line capacity.

    I'm a big fan of air bags to improve handling in the 3/4 ton frame.

    Good luck.

  9. #9

    Default

    Question on the tie-downs; for the frame mounted ones, is this a do-it-yourself project or best to have professionals do it? I'm fairly competent with tools and can do light mechanical stuff. Having never been in possession of a camper, this is all new ground to me!

    Thanks-Jim

  10. #10
    Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    Anchorage
    Posts
    3,246

    Default

    I would DIY, You just have to make sure you don’t drill through any wire or brake/gas lines; and make sure everything lines up. BEFORE YOU DRILL.

    Are you talking about buying a universal camper frame tie down or making your own?

  11. #11
    Member Vince's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    Fairbanks most the time, Ancorage some of the time,& on the road Kicking Anti's all the time
    Posts
    8,989

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Big Jim View Post
    Question on the tie-downs; for the frame mounted ones, is this a do-it-yourself project or best to have professionals do it? I'm fairly competent with tools and can do light mechanical stuff. Having never been in possession of a camper, this is all new ground to me!

    Thanks-Jim
    ah heck couple of 20' 2 inch wide rachet straps from sams.... wrap them all the way around... and go like hell....
    "If you are on a continuous search to be offended, you will always find what you are looking for; even when it isn't there."

    meet on face book here

  12. #12

    Default

    Being that I don't have the facilities or tools for that matter to fabricate anything, thinking of going with a generic setup or even better yet the 'Ole Yeller ratchet tie down straps!!!!
    Gonna be a while before I can get up there to intensify the search for a camper; later in March and may switch gears and go with a 20' or so travel trailer to park on a friend's lot. That would free up the truck for daily use without the load of a camper but it's apparent that a used cab-over camper is likely going to be less cash than a trailer, depending on age & condition of course.
    Thanks----Jim

  13. #13
    Member Vince's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    Fairbanks most the time, Ancorage some of the time,& on the road Kicking Anti's all the time
    Posts
    8,989

    Default

    actually Jim there is another way also... some of the older campers came with STAKE pocket tie downs also... i don't care for then as much but for short term use and easy in/out they did okay... in short were a 2x2 inch steel post in the pocket with a drop down bar for the chain and tensioner... and a pin in the stake pocket hole..

    when shopping for older campers... do a GOOD check around the camper jacks and walls... many sit on them so long they rot out at those points first
    "If you are on a continuous search to be offended, you will always find what you are looking for; even when it isn't there."

    meet on face book here

  14. #14
    Member tccak71's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    Anchorage
    Posts
    2,175

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Big Jim View Post
    You know, I didn't consider the question of fit; just assumed that any cab over camper for a full size truck would fit a full size Ford or any other. I'll take note of that!
    You shouldn't have an issue. The Chevy's have narrower beds/tailgates. Your F250 should be fine.

    Tim

  15. #15
    Member tccak71's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    Anchorage
    Posts
    2,175

    Default

    Good info family man. BigJim, you can carry a large camper on that truck. I hauled an older 10' camper on my 92 F250 effortlessly. No mods at all. Yes, I was overweight. With the boat, camper and crap I was probably 1k over. Not good, but the truck held it fine and didn't sag, etc. Camper probably weighed 2500. I had an 18" extension to tow my boat (light, aluminum Hewescraft).

    Tim

  16. #16
    Member Vince's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    Fairbanks most the time, Ancorage some of the time,& on the road Kicking Anti's all the time
    Posts
    8,989

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by tccak71 View Post
    Good info family man. BigJim, you can carry a large camper on that truck. I hauled an older 10' camper on my 92 F250 effortlessly. No mods at all. Yes, I was overweight. With the boat, camper and crap I was probably 1k over. Not good, but the truck held it fine and didn't sag, etc. Camper probably weighed 2500. I had an 18" extension to tow my boat (light, aluminum Hewescraft).

    Tim
    i can attest to that.. i bought Tims old truck and dove the heck out of it till a buddy seen it liked it so much he traded me a 97 F 250 Diesal... even with the dent i put n the bed dropping the camper on it.. LOL!
    "If you are on a continuous search to be offended, you will always find what you are looking for; even when it isn't there."

    meet on face book here

  17. #17
    Member Bigrob's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Location
    Sterling
    Posts
    68

    Default

    I have a 99 Super Duty and had to put blocking in the bed to get my older 8' to clear the cab. I used a couple of heavy duty pallets to get it high enough, and a 2x4 on each bed rail for stability.

  18. #18
    Member walk-in's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    North Pole
    Posts
    771

    Default

    I haul an 11 1/2' camper on a '99 F-250. Did the following to my truck: airbags, Stable Loads (blocks that engage the overload springs instead of the little rubber bumpers that are stock), frame mounted tie downs, 2x4 framing under the camper to give a bit more clearance on the bed rails, a couple blocks on the front of the bed to keep the camper from hitting my tail lights. It rides great, and I've had no issues.

    Frame mounted tie downs are the only way to go IMO. You probably won't need to do any drilling. On my truck the front ones mounted to existing holes in the frame and the rear ones mount to the hitch. The only PITA was that on the driver's side one of the bolts for the front mount had to be fished in between the frame and gas tank.
    We are right to take alarm at the first experiment upon our liberties.
    James Madison

  19. #19
    Member
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Posts
    6,031

    Default put it upside down on the gas filler side

    Quote Originally Posted by walk-in View Post
    The only PITA was that on the driver's side one of the bolts for the front mount had to be fished in between the frame and gas tank.
    The part of the tiedown on the drivers front (frame mounted of course) was going to get in the way of the gas tank filler; the chain was going to go right in front of that little access door.

    So I pulled out the class 1 looking thingy that gets pegged to the class 1 looking thingy that's attached to the truck frame, and reversed it, upside down, and poof, the chain now stays well away from my gas filler.

  20. #20
    Member walk-in's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    North Pole
    Posts
    771

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by FamilyMan View Post
    The part of the tiedown on the drivers front (frame mounted of course) was going to get in the way of the gas tank filler; the chain was going to go right in front of that little access door.

    So I pulled out the class 1 looking thingy that gets pegged to the class 1 looking thingy that's attached to the truck frame, and reversed it, upside down, and poof, the chain now stays well away from my gas filler.
    I was talking about one of the bolts that actually goes through the truck frame to attach the front mount. I think you're talking about the piece that inserts into the mount. Mine isn't in the way of the gas filler door, but it is pretty close. Each truck/camper combo is different. You just have to do what it takes to make it work.
    We are right to take alarm at the first experiment upon our liberties.
    James Madison

Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •