Good Sam Club Open Roads Forum: Info needed on truck / camper compatibilty
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 > Info needed on truck / camper compatibilty

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PGB

Hamilton Ontario

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Posted: 08/15/21 04:23pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Hi all,
I am thinking of purchasing a 2011 GMC Canyon and a 1988 Trav-L-Mate camper. The camper will rest on the tailgate and will be 9 inches longer than the tailgate.
The camper weighs 520 kgs so that is within the weight limitation of the truck but I'm concerned with the centre of gravity.
Does anyone have this truck / camper combination or thoughts?
Thanks much
GB

KD4UPL

Swoope, VA

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Posted: 08/15/21 06:45pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

It sounds like you're trying to put a long bed camper on a short bed truck. Actual data for a 33 year old camper is likely hard to come by. I suspect the COG will be significantly behind the rear axle.
How does the camper's weight match your truck's payload? Remember to add the weight of water, battery, propane, food, and all other supplies you will be hauling.
My guess is that the truck will be overloaded by a good margin and rather difficult to steer.

joerg68

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Posted: 08/16/21 05:18am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

A GMC Canyon does not have a lot of payload. You will put a camper with a long overhang on the truck.
The camper CoG will be at or behind the rear axle.
Depending on where exactly, all the camper weight will go on the rear axle, and some additional weight may even be transferred from front to rear. You can expect to exceed the RAWR. At the very least, be aware of the actual weight on the rear axle and the load capacity of your rear tires.
Where do the 520 kgs come from? If that is the dry weight stated on the camper, it usually excludes any and all loads such as water, lpg, your belongings, often even the camper jacks. The actual weight ready to travel will be a lot greater.
Add to that the weight of all passengers and whatever else you are bringing, like bicycles or sporting gear.
You can add up specified numbers as much as you want, only a scale will tell the truth. If you get the rig, weigh it - ready to camp. It might be a good idea to weigh the empty truck beforehand. Get the axles weighed separately. You can overload, but you need to know the actual capacities and weights.
Also, you are looking at a 33 year old camper. There is a significant risk of major structural damage (water leak, wood rot). If you do not know how to spot the telltale signs, bring someone who does. If the camper was in dry storage for some time, everything may be dried out now, but that doesn't mean it can not leak when you start using it.


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PGB

Hamilton Ontario

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Posted: 08/16/21 05:44am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Thanks for your reply. I can see that this is not a good combination. I think a full size truck is preferable as it opens up more options for the camper.
I appreciate your info.
Gary

mkirsch

Rochester, NY

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Posted: 08/16/21 07:00am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

You are also at a disadvantage trying to mate a camper to a truck from a completely different era. 1988 to 2011 is a lot of time, and truck manufacturers have changed bed dimensions and cab heights many times in that period. The camper may not even physically fit in the truck.

Is the camper even designed for a compact truck?


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Grit dog

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Posted: 08/16/21 01:43pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

If it really only is 520kg, it will be suitable for basically any mid-size truck of the last decade or so, if it fits properly.

But if you're serious about truck camping, even with small campers, a full size truck would be preferable, IMO, unless there are other compelling reasons to get a small truck.


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deserteagle56

Nevada

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Posted: 08/16/21 03:40pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

mkirsch wrote:

You are also at a disadvantage trying to mate a camper to a truck from a completely different era. 1988 to 2011 is a lot of time, and truck manufacturers have changed bed dimensions and cab heights many times in that period. The camper may not even physically fit in the truck.

Is the camper even designed for a compact truck?


^ This!

Make sure the camper will fit between the wheelwells of the pickup.


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PGB

Hamilton Ontario

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Posted: 08/16/21 07:08pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

No as it turns out...it isn't. I jumped the gun. I'm getting a full size truck tomorrow.
GB

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