Side and rear windows on truck caps make driving one’s truck nearly as easy as with a bare bed, and increase comfort and ventilation while camping inside. Andreas tells me that it takes 18 hours to assemble a camper body. To date, over 160 campers and their owners have enrolled in what will probably be the largest truck camper rally ever held. No major brand is a poor choice—Leer has the most negative remarks from online automotive communities, but this is largely a factor of their being the most popular manufacturer of camper shells to begin with—and personal preference for style and accessories may guide one’s choice more so than brand. Premium shells like FWC’s Project M offer more capacity for building out and more space for long-term travel, but at a cost approaching a used slide-in camper. The Model 180 mid-rise cap encloses 20% more space than a cab-high cap, and has a full-height ... View Details. For truck camper owners looking to sell a truck independent of their slide-in camper, selling the camper shell with the truck can be a decent way to appreciably raise its resale value. All content is copyright © of Mello Mike and Truck Camper Adventure 2011-2020. In a pinch, a tarp or mosquito net secured with bungees can also provide this coverage. Many of the smaller companies use similar if not identical molds as the larger companies, and dealer support, warranty, and honest testimonials may be more difficult to find. Each different type of camper has a different height average, ranging from 4-foot tall teardrop trailers to 13-foot tall fifth wheels. 's Most stylish camper shell. Auto Repair. The actual structure was a sandwich core about 1 inch thick which provided exceptional insulation and was strong enough to support my 200 lbs when I had to go topside to install the Fantastic Fan. While they are doubtlessly better than nothing at all, a basic aluminum shell offers more security, weatherproofing, and  options for roof racks and other accessories at nearly identical cost. Soft canvas camper shells have similar security and weatherproofing problems as do soft tonneau covers. 180XR Camper Shells, LEER Camper Shells. Ad. 99 Each OVRLND pop top camper shell is built with custom adventures in mind. However, if the shell is used for camping at all, swing-out windows tend to preclude window screens, which will be a huge inconvenience if one spends any time in bug-prone areas. A.R.E. While the most economical choice is almost always going to be a basic aluminum camper shell, considerations such as accessory choices, roof load limits, and truck configuration all play a role. Alternatively, for more insulation, indoor/outdoor carpeting can be used to upholster a shell instead. Just as there are hundreds of options for choosing a camper shell, thousands of accessories exist to make life easier, whether for utility or life inside the shell. Most manufacturers offer the option of swing-out or sliding side windows on truck shells, which each have benefits. WANTED: Tall Camper Shell. Blogs and social networks like Pinterest and Reddit offer a wealth of inspiration for build ideas, accessories, and living arrangements. All aluminum roofs are bent to the shape of the Tig welded aluminum roof. Discussion Starter • #1 • Nov 16, 2004. … #2 The Bel-Air shell offers a roof vent. We go out of our way to carry every major line of Nissan camper shells, so that whether you are looking for a custom Nissan truck camper shell or a fiberglass camper shell or anything in between, we've got it for you. Flexible caulking is important as camper shells, especially when heavily loaded on the roof or taken off-road, will work slightly and can break the bond of a non-flexible caulk. Beyond what they provide in cargo handling and security, a camper shell is also—unsurprisingly as their name might imply—a decent miniature truck camper. To each there own of course but they felt more like a tent than they did a camper. It also provided the perfect environment to add personal touches like black out curtains and fine mesh bug screens which could easily be secured with Velcro hook strips. My wife and I have been considering a downgrade to a much smaller unit for some time and it’s why I like these articles. As with slide-in campers, it is wisest to pick and outfit a model which will support one’s budget and needs both present and future. Furthermore, as the adhesive is secured to the bed rails and not the camper shell, this will not bond the camper shell to the truck bed. Most notably, for truck owners with short beds—or indeed, any truck bed shorter than your own height—something like the DAC truck tent can facilitate sleeping with the tailgate down and shell window raised, adding the necessary length for comfortable, non-diagonal sleeping. LOVE OUR CAPS? high quality brand new fiberglass camper shells made to order. Free shipping on many items! Another area to increase savings and utility is the expensive headliner option many shell manufacturers offer. The overland marketplace is hot. 775-323-0270 caravancampers@hotmail.com 4.7 out of 5 stars 561 $18.99 $ 18 . MID/HIGH-RISE. Which means your new truck cap is part of you, too. Camper shell installations which require drilling into the rails of one’s truck bed are slightly more difficult to remove, but this is still a quick job with a good vice grip and socket wrench. Whether you seek SUV aesthetics, raw functionality, or a lightweight alternative to a standard slide-in truck camper, a camper shell, also known as a shell, cap, or topper, is a great addition to your truck. A swing-up rear hatch without a tailgate, or opening single- or double-doors as found on some commercial-type shells, may not safely allow for carrying these goods with open doors. I'm looking for a good used tall camper shell for my 2000 Dakota near Memphis, Tennessee. Some manufacturers have specific deals with accessory companies like Thule or Yakima to only install their particular brand of hardware on their shells, so this should be a consideration when making one’s choice of camper shell brand. Base price: Upon request. For those of us in a rainy or theft-prone environment, a shell is an all-but essential upgrade. Your truck is part of who you are. Shells without windows are more secure and remove the risk of a rock or other projectile shattering what can be a shockingly expensive window ($300 to $500 for a factory-replaced opening rear window), but complicate driving. The choice of materials for one’s camper shell comes down to personal preference and budget. Built for years of labor, our commercial caps are the perfect partner for your truck. 24 in tall at front 35 in tall at rear Location: piercy Price: $150 Ships for $7.49. Join our email list to receive special deals and discounts, and stay in-the-know about new product updates and more. Mike, another great idea! Short-bed full- and mid-size trucks are typically the easiest to find shells for, but be aware that camper shell fitment can vary hugely between even adjacent generations of the same model of truck. Well, today, after a 600 mile round trip from the south side of Atlanta to Jacksonville, we picked up a Leer topper for my co-workers ’17 RAM 2500 short bed. Warning: Cancer and Reproductive Harm. Utilize 15% more space than a cab-high model and save on fuel with stunning aerodynamics. Shipping and local meet-up options available. An exterior cargo container was made from furnace ducting and attached to the front of the camper. Napier Enterprises Napier Sportz Tr... $269.99 $279.99. Craigslist is a perennial favorite for deals on used camper shells, but finding a shell on Craigslist which fits one’s exact truck model, generation, and with the right color to match is like finding a field of four-leaf clovers. Through this method nearly any present or future leak can be eradicated (except from egregious gaps stemming from poor fit) at the cost of bonding the camper shell to the truck bed, which complicates removal. They are inexpensive compared to slide-in campers and far less stressful to mount, secure, stock, and drive with for a short weekend jaunt to the woods. 301. At Andy's Auto Sport, we have a huge variety of Nissan camper shells to ensure that you have every camper shell option available to you. Because I live in Texas, I went with a Leer 180 with one windoor for my 2015 Access cab. No screw fasteners are needed on the roof; keeping it water tight. The weighted average price reduces all the prices down to one single price. Spice up your family camping with these 5 homemade DIY camper shell plans that you can build by yourself on your vehicles to add a sleeping bed space and all the luxury that will provide ease of travel and camping. You may call them truck caps, camper shells, pickup toppers, or truck tops. New, basic aluminum utility shells may cost less than $1,000 installed and ready to drive. An honest assessment of one’s needs should begin with the question of how often the camper shell will stay mounted, the remaining lifespan of one’s vehicle, and the utility it will provide to one’s lifestyle. Having had an ARE with rear walk through door for about 6 years and having camped out of the back of the truck as such for at least 4 of them I can attest to their practicality and efficiency. Here are the results to this week’s Question of the Week, “How tall is your truck and camper rig?” Pop-Up Campers Tom Surles: 2008 Ford F250 / 2003 Northstar 850SC – 9’4” For near the cost of a new hard-shell tonneau, a camper shell provides far more utility and convenience for a number of purposes. I used to use a ford transit van for my carpet repair van, I just purchased a Chevy Silverado with high top cap with 6 inch conduit carriers for transition strips and tack strips with a bed slide. Bel-Air Camper Shells (714) 534 - 1373 Up front prices are easy to find and listed on this website. It’s worth reading manuals, talking to dealers, or calling the factory itself to more clearly understand the difference between these two ratings. Note that for all shells, rooftop dynamic load ratings may be different, sometimes significantly, from static load ratings. We included it along with our Runaway Range Runner in our trade in with D&H for our first truck camper. Less-common builders of camper shells include Four Wheel Campers, Bestop’s soft camper shells, ProTops, AT Overland, Ranch, ATC, and Jason. Some manufacturers offer reinforced versions of their fiberglass shells for commercial usage as well, increasing the shell weight even further. A shell insulated with an indoor/outdoor felt carpet will allow Velcro to be stuck to it, while automotive headliners may not provide a bond at all. And while an awkwardly fitting and non-color-matched shell can represent a discount of thousands over a new one, it certainly won’t impress one’s coworkers sitting in the office parking lot. Ships for $13.99. One can also often buy the exact model of window from factory-direct online stores and save on labor costs instead. Find the right part to get the job done with eBay. Else, a no-frills aluminum model provides more of the benefits of a camper shell without a significant increase in cost, and with a longer lifetime owing to sturdier construction and fewer moving parts. Aluminum sturdy camper shell. A.R.E. Camper shells turn the traditionally exposed truck bed into a lockable, weatherproof space for storing cargo or even oneself on camping trips. The opening windows on many models of camper shell provide useful ventilation where enclosed tonneaus instead create dark caves amenable to mold growth. Thin-wall aluminum shells could dent or even fail with the weight of a person and gear on top. We don’t take that lightly. Camper Shells, LEER Camper Shells. Monday-Saturday 9am-5pm Church on Sunday We appreciate your business and will work hard to earn it. You can find more about him and his travels at ZacharyHesse.com. These details can be seen in the picture at the top of the article, taken at the Arches National Park. every new camper shell comes painted to match your truck at no extra cost and all new camper shells come with a warranty. Spend enough time ogling trucks and one will see a fair number sporting a shell atop their bed. After a year or so of traveling and switching it to 2 other trucks purchased in the following 5 years we came to consider it one of the best investments we had ever made in our lifetime. Removal is a common need for truck camper owners, as the shell must be removed before mounting a slide-in camper. In either case, a few upgrades make camper shells comfortable for short or even long-term trips. Choosing a shell without a headliner can be problematic, as chopper-gun construction leaves fiberglass shells with a rough finish inside and aluminum shells have inherent condensation and insulation problems. $500.00. Drilling and adding cargo rack rails oneself is easier on a fiberglass shell than an aluminum one, and this is a potential for great savings where some cargo rack options can add $500 or more to the price of a camper shell. Tradesman By Access Manufacturing, Inc. Have you had trouble getting your custom canopy designed and manufactured? At Caravan Camper Shells, all of our work is custom crafted and made to order. Sliding side windows nearly always have screens, or can be easily retrofitted with them, and make a better option if the shell will be used for camping trips. The complexity of the separate fiberglass mold and low volume numbers contributed to this cost. A popular upgrade is to construct a bed platform with space for storage underneath. This of course is just the shell and not the peripheral components such as plumbing, wiring or interior carpentry. This is useful not only for carrying loads on one’s roof, but also if one needs bodily access to the roof of the shell to secure those loads without using a ladder from the ground. It was at a dealership and was white, perfect match. Utilize 15% more space than a cab-high model and save on fuel with stunning aerodynamics. Four Wheel Campers supported the open house [read more], Prescott, Arizona-based AT Overland recently released a Summit truck topper for the Jeep Gladiator, the first enclosed camping solution for the popular 4WD pickup truck. Powered by WordPress. Aluminum shells range from thin-walled, bare-bones economy models to beefy contractor-grade shells capable of holding a quarter ton or more on the roof. The rear walk through door option by itself was an additional $1300. LEER A Member of the Truck Accessories Group, LLC. This also allows one to pick a shell manufacturer independent of whether they partner with Yakima or Thule to provide these accessories. $200.00. $200.00. In a practical case, this could mean that a shell is capable of carrying a rooftop tent down the road, as well as safely supporting two or more campers inside when stationary. Our mid/high-rise caps are with you for the long haul and large haul. Most 6-foot mid-size truck beds are able to fit a full-size mattress in this way, and full-size trucks should have no issues at all fitting full-size mattresses. Almost every state in the USA has regulations concerning the legal height limits of camper trailers, and going over this limit can result in a fine or even some damage to the roof of your vehicle! And while tonneaus (which must be able to open) cannot be fully weatherproofed, camper shells are not only typically mounted with weatherstripping, but can be additionally caulked with silicon caulk or butyl tape as well for added assurance. More exotic shells, like the Four Wheel Campers Project M and AT Overland Summit, near $10,000, but sport the utility of a small pop-up truck camper. His current home is a 2010 Toyota Tacoma sporting a Leer 122 camper shell with a homemade sleeping platform and hitch kitchen. Manufactured with precision and care in Reno, Nevada since 1955. After graduating college with a degree in philosophy, he worked as a proposal writer before departing on a cross-country road trip. Anyone with an open-bed pickup truck has likely experienced something flying out on the highway, a sensitive load getting soaked in an unexpected rainstorm, the theft of even the most seemingly worthless items, or garbage thrown into the bed. Doors and windows are also available. Conversely, most camper shells which feature swing-up rear windows and use the truck’s existing tailgate allow for outsize cargo to rest on the raised tailgate while the open window can be secured with a bungee as far up as it needs to go. This allows one to add hooks for suspending a camping light inside a shell, or even to attach curtains or Reflectix panels over the windows for privacy and additional insulation. Ships for $13.99. If one plans to drive their truck for 200,000 more miles after buying a $2,000 camper shell, then this adds a measly $0.01 to the per-mile lifetime cost. Small gaps from poorly-fitting camper shells can prevent a good, weatherproof seal or create an annoying whistle if edges stick out into the disturbed airflow from the cab of one’s truck. Anyhow, a coworker wanted one for his WHITE ’03 Ram 3500 long bed and after some Craigslist searching he stumbled onto a WHITE top of the line LEER with the flushed in frameless windows, which was a real steal at $500 and about a two hour drive. First things first, the standard camper shell is light—about 300 pounds—making it ideal for payload-challenged half-ton and mid-size trucks. On top of this, camper shells facilitate roof racks to mount all sorts of outsize cargo which might not otherwise fit inside the bed. JMHO Joe, Zachary’s article is the most complete and well thought out synopsis of a truck topper that I’ve ever seen. Nearly all fiberglass shells are made from chopper-gun fiberglass construction, which is cheap but heavy. This is often a two-person (or more) job, as some fiberglass shells can top 400 pounds for long-bed trucks. 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No matter the height or material of a camper shell, it’s important to consider the impact it will have on your ease of driving. See different models of camper tops, toppers, and shells for the Ford F150 pickups. The more windows, the less coffin-like a camper shell will feel from the inside and the better the driving visibility will be. An insulated shell will still lead to condensation with one or more people sleeping inside all night, particularly on the single-pane windows found in every camper shell, and so it is important to allow some ventilation. The 180 is a taller than cab high shell; the XR part of the model name … Camping World. Swing-out windows allow one to access the truck bed from the side for smaller items, which can be more convenient than crawling in from the rear every time. Each one is handmade to order in Fort Collins, Colorado, using beautiful woods like western red cedar and beetle kill pine. Camper shells retain value only moderately well, partially as a result of their specific fitment to a particular truck model and generation, and their resale value independent of a truck is lower than what they contribute as a truck-shell package. A fun adventure in a beautiful place can be ruined by a terrible bed the night before. Article by Toni Sumner. When purchasing a new camper shell, one should consider the proximity of licensed distributors who can order, install, and service your shell. They also offer a camper body design that is ready to assemble. From load security and weatherproofing to minimalist weekend jaunts to the woods, nearly every truck can fit some kind of camper shell without modification and using the truck’s existing bed hardware. Aluminum shells are generally cheaper than their fiberglass counterparts, although heavy-duty commercial-type aluminum shells can be the most expensive options many manufacturers offer. When it comes to choosing high quality, professional grade commercial truck tops, truck camper shells, truck caps, truck canopies, and truck toppers, Access Manufacturing, Inc. is an industry leader with over 40 years of experience in product design, manufacturing, and installation. Expand your horizons — and your truck bed — with a LEER cab-high cap. California Prop 65 Warning. If the impact of the camper shell on maximum payload is not as significant a factor, a heavier-walled aluminum shell can support more weight on roof racks. Monday-Saturday 9am-5pm Church on Sunday We appreciate your business and will work hard to earn it. While this mattress would not fit between the wheel wells of a Tacoma without squeezing, the bed platform sits atop them. The typical camper trailer is a mass-produced item with a fiberglass or aluminum shell. If your slide-in camper requires the removal of one’s tailgate, a camper shell which replaces the tailgate entirely may be a better option than reinstalling the tailgate each time you want to mount the camper shell. Broken windows, either from rubble kicked up while off-road, shifting cargo, accidents, or just general bad luck can be a huge expense. Cab-height shells also make for coffin-like sleeping arrangements, especially if one opts to build storage underneath a sleeping platform or owns a midsize truck with a shallow bed. Before upholstering, note that bare fiberglass shells direct from the factory tend to have a significant amount of fiberglass dust on their interior surfaces which will ruin this bonding. Workmate Camper Shell is what the name implies: a Workmate (helper). The result is a time-tested and proven molded fiberglass camper shell designed for off-road use and longevity. Cab High Tacoma Camper Shells These shells reach the height of your cab’s roofline to provide a smooth and streamlined look to the back of your truck. Great article! Mello Mike is an Amazon.com associate. Furthermore, their low weight and profile means that even the smallest mid-size truck can tote a camper shell without issue where a slide-in may pose a struggle with handling, efficiency, or insurance liability. Mid- or high-rise shells add another one to two feet of vertical space without the hit to efficiency that awkward loads protruding above the cab incur. Greg Clauson Dodge Dakota JOIN HERE 2/10/2004 18:57:55: RE: Camper shell IP: Logged Message: I have a silver 01 QC shell that i would like to sell, if anyone is interested email me. The ability to gel-coat fiberglass means that color-matching one’s truck is much easier if this is a concern. But that’s not the case with the Terrapin, the largest tow-able caravan by Casual Turtle Campers. We’ve highlighted several of these smaller campers lately like the Outfitter Caribou Lite and [read more], Four Wheel Campers (FWC) just opened its first company-owned dealership in Rosenberg, Texas, a suburb of Houston, and celebrated the grand opening with an open house last weekend. The vast majority of camper shell owners opt for cab-height shells with full-length side windows and an opening rear window for access. Toyota pick up camper shell. Which camper shell is right for your Tacoma? Many commercial-type aluminum shells feature opening double-doors, and fiberglass options include ARE’s Walk-in Door series. The Decked system is a pre-built version of this featuring slide-out drawers, but at a relatively high cost to what can be achieved in a weekend with power tools and some lumber. Racks are custom fit to each camper shell and available in two styles, Standard & Low profile, the front racks are made from angle iron which helps to reduce wind noise. The other end of the rope can be tied off to the back of the truck bed, and the box easily pulled out of from under the bed platform without crawling under it. I solved this by making 1/2 inch thick Delrin plastic blocks the exact shape of the stake pockets in the aft corners of the bed and doing a careful alignment/drill and attachment of these to the seal surface of the shell. It doesn’t matter if it’s a slide-in or a chassis-mount, a hard-side or a pop-up, if it’s a truck camper and it’s carried on a truck, we cover it. Any number of inflatable mattresses exist to fit between the wheel wells of specific styles of truck, but I am not a fan of air mattresses and prefer something solid. YOU’LL LOVE OUR NEWSLETTER. Find great deals on Camper shells in Phoenix, AZ on OfferUp. The weigted average price for a used Toyota tacoma camper shell is $3,384. They gave us $1000 in trade so our investment ended up being $1600 spread out over 6 years ($266 per year). For midsize truck owners who anticipate carrying heavy loads in their beds, the 100 to 200 pounds of weight savings from a basic aluminum model can pose a significant payload increase over heavier aluminum or fiberglass shells. As sleeping goes, I am of the opinion that one’s sleeping situation sets the tone of one’s day. Zachary Hesse is a Massachusetts native, writer, and former commercial tuna harpooner. If I lived within a day's drive of L.A. - I would have opted for a Bel-Air camper shell for two reasons. We will be posted within a couple weeks or so on my website on the repair page! Racks are custom fit to each camper shell and available in two styles, Standard & Low profile, (Standard with tie down rings up high) (Low Profile with tie down rings down low) the front racks are made from angle iron which helps to reduce wind noise. 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