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> Suggestions for a light hard side camper?

jensenbreck
post Nov 13 2017, 02:03 AM
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Group: Members
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Joined: 9-November 17
Member No.: 9,865
Favorite Truck Camper(s): no
Type and Brand of Truck(s) Owned: C7
Type of Tiedowns used: No
Truck and Camper Setup: Happijac



A former TC camper owner here, back for another round. Bottom line, when we became a family of five, our 10.5 foot Alpenlite/Western RV camper became impractical. Doable, but it was tough on the middle child who was too claustrophobic to handle the over-dinette bunk, and chose the floor with a foam mattress instead. Hazardous duty, when dad came down from the cabover to use the aft toilet in the night! We switched to a 30 foot bunkhouse fifth wheel, which is really luxurious in comparison. It's night and day easier to set-up and break camp (we always unloaded the camper if in a location for more than one night, in order to have transportation without packing camp), hauls much nicer than our high-profile, two ton slide-in and is vastly more comfortable with the the whole family aboard (we can even bring friends along), and cooking is much more pleasurable. Well, I digress; not really trying to make thread on why a towable has been better than a TC for us. With one kid in college now, I realize some trips could work well in a TC with the four of us. More importantly, my desire to access back-country camping opportunities still exists. Once we had the Alpenlite dialed-in with air bags, a Torklift tie down system and other niceties, reality set in that it was too heavy and sway-prone to comfortably take it on many of the unimproved roads/trails we had hoped to. Clearly, any TC in our future needs to be much better suited for back country access. I have already debated the pop- vs. hard-side quandary, and hard-side wins. Even a hard side pop up like an Alaskan would be questionable, but worthy consideration. Light weight is the main criteria, along with mandatory bathroom, even if it's just a port-a-potty. So likely a 9 footer based on what I can see (I'm not worried about one foot of overhang, even two).



For more details : explainer video
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SidecarFlip
post Nov 13 2017, 12:15 PM
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Group: Members
Posts: 374
Joined: 15-October 16
Member No.: 9,221
Favorite Truck Camper(s): Forest River Palomino SS
Type and Brand of Truck(s) Owned: 1997 Ford F350 4x4 LB SRW CC 7.3 diesel
Type of Tiedowns used: HappyJac standard
Truck and Camper Setup: 1997 Ford F350 4 door 4x4 Crew Cab 7.3 Diesel, Lance 915 loaded, 2015 Palomino SS1500 Loaded



Four Wheel Camper or a Northstar pop up. Myself, I have a Palomino pop up and the low CG is just fine for off roading and mine has the optional we bath and outside shower for my wife.

Lots of options depending on the depth of youe wallet.

Alaskans are heavy and don't come with an inside bathroom and very expensive as well.
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SidecarFlip
post Nov 21 2017, 09:21 PM
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Group: Members
Posts: 374
Joined: 15-October 16
Member No.: 9,221
Favorite Truck Camper(s): Forest River Palomino SS
Type and Brand of Truck(s) Owned: 1997 Ford F350 4x4 LB SRW CC 7.3 diesel
Type of Tiedowns used: HappyJac standard
Truck and Camper Setup: 1997 Ford F350 4 door 4x4 Crew Cab 7.3 Diesel, Lance 915 loaded, 2015 Palomino SS1500 Loaded



I might add, any hard side camper will have a vertical CG issue, no way around that, which is why I have a hard side with a tent top. Keeps my CG low and allows off roading without the rock and roll which I dislike anyway.

Mine has every convenience but ac and I might add that at some point as well.

My issue with ac is it adds to the vertical CG again. I like everything of weight, down low. I even pack accordingly.

Thinking back to my Lance, I not so fondly remember driving on twisty roads and 'feeling' the sway the Lance imparted to the truck. I have none of that now, I don't even know the camper is back there unless I glance in the mirror or glance at the screen on the rearview camera to check on my quad on the trailer behind the camper.

Much better feeling, on the road and off.

Another plus with a pop up is, fuel mileage and ease of parking and not being concerned about overhead clearances... all positives for me.
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