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Old 09-21-2018, 03:13 PM   #1
ubtripn
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How good do our trucks do with cab over campers - c10 2WD

I forgot task this. Today's trucks have campers cinched down on all corners and bagged suspensions. How does a half ton 68 all coils do with a camper loaded on the bed? Would the handling be safe?
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Old 09-21-2018, 06:35 PM   #2
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Re: How good do our trucks do with cab over campers - c10 2WD

look into what the custom camper package came with. Good sway bars from a 3/4 or 1 ton.
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Old 09-21-2018, 06:46 PM   #3
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Re: How good do our trucks do with cab over campers - c10 2WD

Most importantly, know what the camper you're considering weighs and avoid busting the GVWR for the 1/2 ton. As far as handling, it's gonna be like a wobbly brick. Sway bars a good idea. Might also consider the stabilizer bags in the coils too that you can inflate when loaded. For a 1/2 ton - don't expect to have a cabover that also hangs off the back by a foot. A 1/2 ton is gonna be GVWR limited with any cabover quickly.
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Old 09-22-2018, 07:59 PM   #4
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Re: How good do our trucks do with cab over campers - c10 2WD

yea and no corner carving on the switch backs.
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Old 09-22-2018, 08:04 PM   #5
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Re: How good do our trucks do with cab over campers - c10 2WD

What does the camper weigh? Half tons aren't generally regarded as camper material. That's why they made camper specials, which were 3/4 ton.
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Old 09-22-2018, 09:50 PM   #6
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Re: How good do our trucks do with cab over campers - c10 2WD

When I was a boy, we had a 1970 C20. My dad wound up buying a rather large cab-over camper. By the way, it hung out past the bumper...

The father of my girlfriend at the time wanted to borrow it for a camping trip. My dad said that was fine. He showed up with a 1/2 ton truck, and loaded it. Nearly crashed trying to drive out of the driveway. It simply wouldn't handle the camper. Way to much weight..

In fact, the C20 didn't like it. Was simply to much weight, and changed the center of gravity way too much.

Now, it all comes down to how big is the camper, what does it weigh, distance and conditions for the travel... Lots of factors.

I wouldn't advise it with a 1/2 ton truck though. As others have stated, check the weight and gross weight of the vehicle. It all depends on lots of factors. The one we had wasn't likely safe in the 3/4 ton, and certainly should not have been safe in a 1/2 ton.
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Old 09-22-2018, 09:53 PM   #7
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Re: How good do our trucks do with cab over campers - c10 2WD

1-ton only imho unless it’s modified to be a 1-ton equivalent.
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Old 09-22-2018, 10:27 PM   #8
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Re: How good do our trucks do with cab over campers - c10 2WD

From my actually experience I'd say a C/20 handles campers just fine. The only time I noticed it on there was going over uneven ground that rocks any vehicle. Being so tall it's a bit exaggerated. I'm talking about like turning from the pavement with a drop off and a swale where things meet and things like that. A 10' camper (2' out back) with over cab is actually better than one as long as the bed because it counterbalances the over cab which is generally a 4' cantilever. Puts weight onto from suspension. Ones w/o a bathroom out back are best. That adds a lot of weight. I never had a problem finding a place to go and never had to deal with that crappy mess. I personally wouldn't use a 1/2t, but can't say I have any experience... and that's why. I did use a C/10 for a work truck with a Reading steel cap full of tools and a ladder rack. I put new 3/4t coils on and added Air Lifts to the rear. It handled that weight just fine, but was only cab-high. Although it might be carrying 500-800# up on the rack. I bought tht for my foreman to carry tools to get work started if I couldn't be there. That was the only 1/2t I ever worked out of.

When I was at Grande Canyon with mine there was a guy from CA with a similar size camper on a C/10 I talked to. He never complained about the handling. In fact, he acted like he thought his truck was well equipped because it had a big block.
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Old 09-24-2018, 10:22 AM   #9
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Re: How good do our trucks do with cab over campers - c10 2WD

Thank you all for the great information. My grandpa in law has a like new cab over with bathroom, don't know the weight though. He is selling it for next to nothing. I think I am going to just go with a pop up camper trailer and use the bed for gear instead. I have seen photos of our trucks with campers but I just didn't know if I could do it safely in a half ton. I would use a camper shell but not much more knowing all of this now. Thanks again everyone. BTW - as soon as I said I wouldn't be buying it yesterday it sold literally 10 minutes later. I am glad this forum exists, I came close to attempting to put a giant on my truck.
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Old 09-24-2018, 11:53 AM   #10
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Re: How good do our trucks do with cab over campers - c10 2WD

Quote:
Originally Posted by franken View Post
What does the camper weigh? Half tons aren't generally regarded as camper material. That's why they made camper specials, which were 3/4 ton.
There are 1/2 ton Custom Campers, but not many. Still limited by GVWR though. I would only use a 3/4 for a cabover type camper.
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Old 09-24-2018, 12:18 PM   #11
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Re: How good do our trucks do with cab over campers - c10 2WD

Copy that. Thank you! =)
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Old 09-24-2018, 04:34 PM   #12
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Re: How good do our trucks do with cab over campers - c10 2WD

My Dad rented a camper to put on our '68 C-10 when that truck was about 4 years old to take the family to the Eastern States Fair back in the day. Hauled all kinds of heavy loads of hay around the farm and area. But when the camper was installed, the truck was not drivable, and the place he rented the camper from installed air bags in the coil springs. Did not make it much better at all. Very long and unsafe ride from Maine down to where the Fair was held.
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Old 09-24-2018, 11:46 PM   #13
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Re: How good do our trucks do with cab over campers - c10 2WD

I have a '70 3/4T CST Custom Camper truck that has had a shell on it since '73. I didn't own it in those days, as it belonged to my wife's parents. I've driven it many times in the 37 years we have been married, pulling a number of different trailers, including car haulers. The worst handling that I have ever experienced was after I bought the Firestone tires that are on it now. It has a bunch of over steer, even though we are running 10 PSI higher in the rear tires. I'll probably end up with a rear stabilizer bar as a result. It had Michelin tires on it before that, and handling wasn't even an issue.

I will also say that this was before we put the cab over camper shell on it. I've done a fair bit of road racing and street racing in my time, and can handle the over steer. My wife used to drive this truck to school (university) in downtown LA traffic, and has noticed the difficulty with the new tires as a passenger. I don't want her to drive it until I get it sorted. That might require another $1k or more in tires and wheels. #notmadeofmoney
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