Truck bed campers are becoming more and more popular due to their flexibility and compact design. However, many are starting to recognize the benefits of a truck camper or a flatbed truck camper.
Did you know there was such a thing as a flatbed truck camper? In some ways, it’s very similar to a typical truck camper, but there are a few key differences. In fact, many prefer a flatbed truck camper! Let’s examine why you should at least consider a flatbed truck camper if you’re in that market.
Can You Put a Truck Camper on a Flat Bed Truck?
Yes. A standard truck camper sits inside a truck bed using the bed’s walls to help support the structure. However, owning a flatbed truck doesn’t have to prohibit you from owning a truck camper. It just means you might need some adjustments for mounting the tie-downs and turnbuckles, but it’s not an impossible task.
Who Makes Flatbed Truck Campers?
If you want a flatbed truck camper, you might consider a custom build. A handful of truck camper brands are currently producing models you can mount on a flatbed truck. Some of these brands include Hallmark, Four Wheel Campers, and BundutecUSA.
When you step inside these professionally designed and crafted flatbed truck campers, you’ll quickly see why they’re growing in popularity. They’re the definition of big things coming in small packages. Let’s take a look!
The Hallmark flatbed truck campers come in 7ft or 8.5ft floor lengths for short or long-bed trucks. Not only do you choose the length, but you can also choose between a side or rear entry, which is an advantage to selecting a flatbed model. But note that the door’s position will limit your choices when it comes to floorplans.
All Hallmark models have a molded fiberglass composite exterior similar to a boat’s construction, which increases durability. The internal support system is standard wood, but customers can upgrade to an aluminum support material for $2,000.
All Hallmark flatbed truck campers come with standard features, including a 6-gallon water heater, a 4.2cu-ft refrigerator, a ducted heater, and a cassette toilet. While it may not come standard with air conditioning or solar-powered systems, it’s easy to add these items later. Hallmark provides a full list of options for customers to consider.
It’s important to note that Hallmark does not provide a flatbed truck bed to go with your custom camper, but they will assist customers with selecting one. It’s always a good idea to work with the truck camper manufacturer to choose a truck bed suitable for the camper model you’re choosing.
Four Wheel Campers
If you don’t have a flatbed truck but want a flatbed truck camper, Four Wheel Campers can help! They’ll help you convert your typical truck bed setup with side rails to an aluminum flatbed tray. Working with this company ensures your flatbed truck bed and flatbed camper truck partner well together.
Four Wheel Campers packs many essential features into each one of their pop-up style truck campers. Standard features like a 1.7 cu-ft three-way refrigerator, pre-wiring for solar, and a 20-gallon freshwater tank will make off-grid camping straightforward.
If the standard features aren’t enough, there’s a massive list of optional upgrades. A backup camera, solar installation, and roof racks are just a few of the upgrade options that you can do yourself or ask the manufacturer to do.
Another quality manufacturer is BundutecUSA. They manufacture their units in Raymond, Iowa.
Whether you choose to camp on or off-grid, you’ll be camping in luxury with the 20-gallon fresh water tank, two-burner stove, and a queen-sized mattress. With the Odyssey model, you get 6ft 4in interior height, which is generous for most campers. And the tinted windows provide some privacy for you and your fellow campers.
BundutecUSA also provides many upgrades like a skylight, roof-mounted air conditioner, and wireless electric jacks. There’s also a list of optional accessories like awnings, steps, and ladders to assist you with using your truck camper. The customization options mean you can be as comfortable as you choose.
How Do You Mount a Flatbed Truck Camper?
Because a flatbed truck does not have the side rails like a standard truck bed, mounting a flatbed truck camper is a different process. Let’s take a look at a couple of mounting options you could consider.
Permanent Flatbed Installation
One option for securely mounting your flatbed truck camper is to attach the camper using bolts and a subframe. This support would be a separate frame from the truck’s chassis as the massive weight of the truck camper shifting would cause damage to the chassis, especially on uneven terrain.
When you permanently install your flatbed truck camper to your truck, you no longer have the freedom to add or remove the truck camper when needed. This mounting style can be incredibly inconvenient and even prohibit adventures that involve low clearance bridges.
Removable Flatbed Truck Campers
Having a removable flatbed truck camper provides freedom to explore rougher terrains or adventures with low overhead clearances. These rigs typically have manual or electric truck camper jacks on the corners to assist with raising and lowering the truck camper onto the flatbed of your truck.
You should also use a compatible turnbuckle to anchor your truck camper with tie-downs. These mounts secure your truck camper to your vehicle when traveling.
One benefit to leaving the jacks on your truck camper is that you can use them to stabilize the RV and slightly level even when on the truck.
Benefits of a Flatbed Truck Camper
In a recent Truck Camper Magazine survey, 84.87% of respondents said they would consider a flatbed truck camper. There are a few reasons why there’s such a massive interest in this truck camper type.
More Storage Space
You can never have too much storage space when you have a truck camper. Because flatbed truck campers can have a square bottom, this extra space increases the storage capacity significantly! Depending on the design, this could be internal or external storage. Either way, you likely won’t hear campers complaining about the additional storage space.
More Floor Space
The ability to have a completely square base provides a greater surface area for flooring. You’ll never hear complaints about too much storage and space in the camping community! The increased floor space offers more options and creativity in floor plan options.
Stability for Off-Roading
The unit’s base is entirely flat on the truck’s bed, which provides more stability when off-roading. While you shouldn’t go to extremes when off-roading due to the higher center of gravity, flatbed truck campers offer more flexibility in where you can take your truck camper.
The ability to access previously inaccessible remote areas is always an exciting adventure!
How Much Does a Flatbed for a Truck Cost?
If you want to convert the bed of your truck into a flatbed, you can either do a DIY version or a commercial model. Typical commercial versions range from $30,000-$60,000 including installation. A DIY version will likely be thousands of dollars cheaper and provide more customization options to meet your camping needs.
Can You Put a Regular Truck Camper on a Flatbed Truck?
Yes, it’s possible to put a regular truck camper on a flatbed truck – we did! You’ll likely need to modify how or where the camper attaches to the vehicle, but it’s possible.
You might also want to install storage boxes on the sides to make the best use of space. You’ll have the added benefit of increased flooring space in the truck camper, and extra storage is always welcome!
Ultimately, putting a truck camper on a flatbed truck is possible and a great way to experience the outdoors. With the recent increase in camping, you’ll likely see a rise in flatbed truck campers in campgrounds.
Would you consider owning and traveling with one?
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