Good Sam Club Open Roads Forum: Truck Campers: Wind Deflector
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notsobigjoe

southeast

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Posted: 01/22/22 08:53am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

https://www.truckcampermagazine.com/camper-mods/projects/4-camper-air-dams-and-wind-deflectors/

Grit dog

Black Diamond, WA

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Posted: 01/22/22 10:02am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Evidently different truck/tc combos have different airflow patterns.
While I agree with jimk that this is likely of no practical benefit, our campers were plastered with bugs directly behind the cab.


2016 Ram 2500, MotorOps.ca EFIlive tuned, 5” turbo back, 6" lift on 37s
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pianotuna

Regina, SK, Canada

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Posted: 01/22/22 03:21pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I have air tabs. They do reduce drag from big trucks. They don't appear to improve mileage--except when I have a tail wind--then they increase mileage more than when I did not have them.

My RV was fairly stable to begin with.

I placed them on the trailing edge of the air conditioner cover, and at the rear of the vehicle.


Regards, Don
My ride is a 28 foot Class C, 256 watts solar, 556 amp-hours of Telcom jars, 3000 watt Magnum hybrid inverter, Sola Basic Autoformer, Microair Easy Start.

HMS Beagle

Napa, California

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Posted: 01/22/22 03:55pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

To fasten it, why not some VHB tape? Or 5200 or Sikaflex? Those would removable (with some effort...) and would not create leaks. Should be plenty strong enough, but does depend on the skin being solid or fastened to something solid. That is how I intend to mount one if I do anything.

JimK-NY wrote:

I would expect Zero improvement. The gap between the truck and camper seems to be a total dead zone. I have never seen bugs, dirt or water enter that area regardless of speed or conditions.

I have little or no significant wind noise due to my camper. If you have wind noise, I would look elsewhere. Start with protrusions and irregular areas. I would look at the gutters, running lights, vents, and similar.


On your camper. Not mine. I have quite a harvest of bugs mainly on the outside edges of the camper but extending in and even all the way across up high (over the cab). There is also a nice pattern of bugs under the overhang somewhat defining the shape of the cab. There is definitely more wind noise with the camper on that with it off. Every situation is going to be different. I have a supercab, not a crew cab truck, so the camper overhang extends some distance ahead of the windshield. The camper overhang sits pretty low, maybe only 6" above the cab roof. The Bigfoot has no sharp corners or irregular protrusions. The airflow around the truck and camper has got to be pretty complex, not easy to visualize without a wind tunnel. I've thought about tufting it and photographing the flow, and might do that prior to and mods.

pianotuna wrote:



Consider Air Tabs?


I've looked as them, and could see the possibility of filling in the low pressure behind the camper. Less sure about the area underneath the overhang. Back when Sleepy was describing his, someone did pop up who had tried the on the front of his camper - put them underneath the overhang if I remember - and said they reduced the wind noise. If they were cheap I might try that, actually it would only cost about $70 so might be worth a try.


Bigfoot 10.4E, 2015 F350 6.7L DRW 2WD, Autoflex Ultra Air Ride rear suspension, Hellwig Bigwig sway bars front and rear

HMS Beagle

Napa, California

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Posted: 01/22/22 04:02pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

notsobigjoe wrote:

https://www.truckcampermagazine.com/camper-mods/projects/4-camper-air-dams-and-wind-deflectors/


Thanks for pointing out that link. The guy who used a molded valence was brilliant.

notsobigjoe

southeast

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Posted: 01/22/22 05:02pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

All the way to the bottom of the the first link.
https://www.truckcampermagazine.com/off-road/extreme-rigs/alaskan-dream-machine/
I wonder if this would tuck in under the cab over so you wouldn't have to drill anything into your camper? Click on quick view.
https://www.icondirect.com/categories/RV-Towing-Products/Wind-Deflectors/AeroShield/
Sleepy's old rig and others. Sleepy had his camper overhauled a couple of years back and that thread is on LOA. You'll have to be a member to see it.
https://www.rv.net/forum/index.cfm/fuseaction/thread/tid/25642689/print/true.cfm
https://www.rv.net/forum/index.cfm/fuseaction/thread/tid/17575645/srt/pa/pging/1/page/1

JimK-NY

NY

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Posted: 01/22/22 06:01pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

HMS Beagle wrote:


I have quite a harvest of bugs mainly on the outside edges of the camper but extending in and even all the way across up high (over the cab). There is also a nice pattern of bugs under the overhang somewhat defining the shape of the cab. There is definitely more wind noise with the camper on that with it off.


I wonder why there is such a difference. I have had two trucks and have traveled with the camper for close to 100,000 miles. The camper behind the cab never has any bug splatters. I can drive through heavy rain and it will usually be dry behind the cab. The exception is when I am parked and the water blows in from the sides. There seems to be a cushion of air not only behind the cab but extending forward between the camper and the cab. That is why I conclude that an air deflector is not going to accomplish anything. At least that would seem to be the case for my camper.

The area between the camper and truck bed is also a dead zone. I have access through doors on both sides and I use that area for storage such as extra clothing, paper goods, a long extension cord and a tarp. Everything is always dry and clean in that area.

HMS Beagle

Napa, California

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Posted: 01/22/22 06:32pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

It isn't really the camper directly behind the cab. I get splatters to the sides of the cab on the part that sticks out, and platters all the way across in a few inch band just below the overhang - where the 90 angle is. If I open the back window it is very different, camper/no camper. There is also more/different buffeting with the windows open, and more wind noise generally.

It isn't a surprise to me that different truck/camper combinations are different. There are many variables in shape, gap, height, overhang, shape of camper nose.

kohldad

Goose Creek, SC

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Posted: 01/22/22 08:47pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I was fighting a water leak at the pass through window when I switched from a 2004 Dodge to a 2015 Ram where I had to raise the camper 3/4". Ended up putting a deflector across the middle of the cab over because I was able to use 4 existing holes in the sheet metal. It reduced the air pressure and changed the direction of the wind enough so the leak was stopped. The added benefit was it reduced the bug count at the top of the front wall under the cab over. It actually added a bit of wind noise in the cab and I didn't notice any change in fuel mileage.

If I was to add one to a fiberglass camper, I would make sure it is angled fore/aft and just use a strong double sided tape. One advantage to this is if you decide it doesn't do what you want, you can remove it without any damage occurring. Plus screw holes equals leak, especially in what will be a high pressure water driven area.


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)


JimK-NY

NY

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Posted: 01/23/22 05:43am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I usually open both the rear truck window and the connecting window from the camper. I have a foam "donut" to seal the gap. If the seal is not good I get whistling noises. The donut is essential. Without it the dead space is gone and I would not be surprised to have wind buffeting sounds and bugs/water/dirt enter the space and even go into the camper.

Anyway before attaching a deflector to the truck or the camper, I would try some experiments. Seal the gap between the cab and camper with foam or perhaps with a canvas dropcloth and see if that helps anything.

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