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 > Question: too much camper - too little truck

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Joined: 05/28/2020

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Posted: 07/03/21 12:27pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I'm not an expert, but when I put our camper on our SRW short bed truck, I also installed a sway bar followed by helper springs. I already had new Bilstein shocks and tires in Load Range E.

My camper isn't as heavy as yours. If you are looking to keep your truck, get hooked up with Hellwig and install some suspension help as well as new shocks. See how it rides then.

If you want to get a new truck, perhaps a dually, but then I'd also go long bed at the same time.

1995 Northland Grizzly 860. 2355 lbs of purple goodness! Sold
2005 Lance 845 - Baby Bertha
2007 Chevy Silverado 2500HD Classic CC SB 4WD
Torklift mounts
Torklift superhitch
Hellwig swaybar and 3500lb helper springs
2002 Cobalt 226 "Baby Blue"



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Posted: 07/03/21 01:41pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Supercharged111 wrote:

notsobigjoe wrote:

deserteagle56 wrote:

kenkorona wrote:

Hi folks:
It was 7000 miles and 30 days of white knuckle ride. So I'm wondering if anyone else has this combination and if so what their experience is. Should I put on other mods to the suspension to improve the ride and if so what will give the most improvement.
Any advice?

I'm sure a lot of other people will chime in here with help. But I had the same experience, only with a long bed truck. Talk about excitement, wait till you experience a blowout on a rear tire with all that weight way up high!

My solution - I bit the bullet and went to a dually pickup. TOTALLY different experience. So much more stable, even with strong crosswinds and freeway speeds. I'm back to being relaxed while driving.

Dually all the way! Mine has a Belltech anti sway bar front and rear, Timbren GMRCK35MA Suspension Enhancement System, Gabriel 43163 Rear Load Carrier an it is rock solid. About $1000 and I installed them. Took me a long time to figure it out but my 1181 loaded is 5000lbs on a Chevy 1996 c3500. My only risk are the cheap Walmart tires but there next... Saving up for some heavy duty Michelins.


I have taken this rig everywhere there is to go on the east coast.

Good to see another GMT400 still hauling a big old camper! I'm jealous as that front Belltech bar is 2wd only.

OP does your leaf pack have the upper overload spring(s)? I know on some older 350 trucks that was optional.

I believe it did before the previous owner lowered it for car shows. At one time it was in show condition but I fixed that...LOL I put an extra leaf spring in the rear to offset the upper springs, it pushes the rear up. In other words I believe it does what the upper springs would have done. It's a big setup but I've had it for so long that I just decided to go all out and spend the money and do it right. As stated above the absolute only sway I have on that vehicle is tires, I'm gonna change that hopefully soon. I'm also taking the booth out sometime and putting some theater seating in it's place. I bought a small Home A/C to mount over the door to run when were sitting at the table I'm hoping it will take care of some of the god awful noise from that thing on the roof. Many many upgrades over the years.



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Posted: 07/03/21 01:57pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Make sure you are not overweight on your tires on the rear axle. Check your tire rating vs the actual weight on that axle. Our F-350 weighs about 7500lbs fully loaded on the rear. Our camper weighs about the same as yours except we have a long bed. We added 19.5 wheels/tires , upper and lower torklifts, rancho 9000 shocks to make it ride better.
We also have the camper package sway bar.


Goose Creek, SC

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Joined: 07/20/2004

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Posted: 07/05/21 09:46am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

First, load it up like you would for a trip and take it for to the scales. If the axles/tires aren't overloaded, then you can put some mods to it.

Bouncing is caused by warn shocks and heavy rear. Upgrade the shocks and look into some airbags.

Leaning can be lessened by adding a heavy rear sway bar. Depending on the age of the truck, it may not even have one. Make sure your tires are E-rated and inflated to max pressure.

Or you can get a very sweet fine handling unit by upgrading to a dually as has been mentioned.

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)

Grit dog

Black Diamond, WA

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Posted: 07/05/21 10:44am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Some of y’all should go back and read the OPs post. This truck is new or almost new, unless he somehow found an “old” 2020 F350 gasser with high miles!

Now just need the OP to participate in the discussion and not get skeered off by the weight police. His camper IS at the upper end of what should be hauled on a srw truck and it won’t behave well without some suspension mods.

* This post was edited 07/05/21 10:50am by Grit dog *

2016 Ram 2500, EFIlive tuned, 5” turbo back, 6" lift on 37s
2017 Heartland Torque T29


Colorado Springs, CO

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Posted: 07/05/21 11:39am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I recently learned about F rated tires, didn't know they were a thing. Could try that as well.

2007 Lance 1131
1997 GMC K3500 crew cab supercharged dually




Joined: 06/13/2012

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Posted: 07/05/21 03:47pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

My F250 ran H rated tires and rims to give me sufficient rating for the TC and trailer hitched up. There are options, but first thing is to get actual loaded axle weights.

Chevy Sonic 1.8-Honda Passport C70B-Host Mammoth 11.5-Interstate Car Carrier 20-Joyner SandViper 250-Kawasaki Concours ZG1000-Paros 8' flatbed-Pelican Decker DLX 8.75-Ram 5500 HD-Tank Urban Touring 150SE


Seattle, WA USA

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Posted: 07/05/21 10:34pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

The OP also mentioned getting a better truck, and NOTHING you add onto or do to a single rear wheel truck will ever make it drive with a camper on it like a dually will.
That’s a HEAVY camper, and it’s on the wrong truck.
Shortbeds never handle as well as long beds either… their center of gravity never works out as well.

2017 Northern Lite 10-2 EX CD SE
99 Ram 4x4 Dually Cummins
A whole lot more fuel, a whole lot more boost.
4.10 gears, Gear Vendors overdrive, exhaust brake
Built auto, triple disc, billet shafts.
Kelderman Air Ride, Helwig sway bar.


Western MT

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Joined: 06/11/2006

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Posted: 07/06/21 06:37am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Yeah, of course, a DRW will handle it better. That being said, I used my same TC with a SRW before I traded for my F450 for 8 1/2 years. I took my maiden voyage stock for a 1000 mile trip. It was ok at slower speeds up to 65 or so. I later added Rancho 9000s, Energy Suspension bump stops, and air bags. That improved the stability. Next, I added 19.5s and ran it that way for 8 more years. Those are all good mods, but if you add air bags be sure to keep the pressure at the minimum you can get by with so that the overloads are engaged. That’s the reason for the the extended bump stops. I also carried minimal water and made sure I kept empty tanks and brought minimum supplies.

Mods are expensive. You might be better off trading if you don’t need a SRW for a daily driver. With my F450, I can carry whatever I want or even tow a TT with no issues.

What tires do you have and what are their capacities? If you have to have a SRW, there are tires that have as much as 4080 capacity, so that might be an option.

'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, Toyo M655 225/19.5 Gs, Curt front hitch, Energy Suspension bump stops.


Rochester, NY

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Joined: 04/09/2004

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Posted: 07/06/21 07:47am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Good luck finding a short bed DRW, especially in this market!

Putting 10-ply tires on half ton trucks since aught-four.

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