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We Renovated A 20 Year-Old Truck Camper Into A Luxury Overland Vehicle

We Renovated A 20 Year-Old Truck Camper Into A Luxury Overland Vehicle

In April 2021, we purchased a 2011 Ram 5500 and a 2000 Bigfoot 3000 Series Truck camper. Over the summer months, we completely renovated the inside and built up the outside into a luxury off-road overlanding vehicle.

We Renovated A 20 Year-Old Truck Camper Into A Luxury Overland Vehicle

The Bigfoot Truck Camper

The 2000 Bigfoot 3000 series was in excellent condition when we bought it but looked outdated. Most upgrades were cosmetic, starting first with the electrical system.

Electrical Upgrades

We set up our truck camper to be an ultimate off-grid and off-road travel rig. The heart of our off-grid power system includes two GC3 Game Changer 3.0 Battle Born Lithium batteries. At 270AH each, these batteries give us a total of 540 amp hours. 

This system uses the Victron Lynx shunt and distributor, the Victron Multiplus 3kVA inverter, Victron MPPT solar charge controllers, and 495 watts of solar power with Battle Born’s flexible solar panels

We also have a 30 amp 12v DC to DC converter and the Victron Orion-TR Smart to charge the batteries from the truck’s alternator. The last component of our truck camper system is the brains of the operation – the Victron Cerbo GX. This unit takes all the data from each of our other Victron components and aggregates it.

What Goes Into an Off-Grid Power System? Overland RV Solar Power System With 12V Air Conditioning

Interior Truck Camper Renovation

Next, we proceeded with painting all of the interior walls.

Most replacement parts like light switches, lights, and the sink were from, a company dedicated to RV replacement parts. (Get 5% off your order with Coupon code “ONTHEMOVE5“)

In the kitchen, we updated the sink, Delta touch kitchen faucet, and added an Acuva ArrowMax 2.0 UV Water Purification system. (Available for 10% off with couple code “mortons”)

Delta Faucet Essa Touch Kitchen Faucet, Oil Rubbed...
  • TOUCH ON. TOUCH OFF. Messy hands. Touch anywhere on the kitchen...
  • MAGNETIC DOCKING: MagnaTite Docking uses a powerful magnet to...
  • LASTS 2X LONGER: Patented DIAMOND Seal Technology reduces leak...

We replaced the cushions with RecPro dinette cushions and got additional matching fabric to reupholster the headboard, cushioned cabinets, and other fabric areas throughout the RV.

For our countertops, we updated the existing kitchen, dinette, and vanity counters with an epoxy countertop kit from Leggari Products. We used Kit #15.

We replaced the carpet with EVA boat foam flooring and covered the aisleway with vinyl plank flooring.

EVA Foam Boat Flooring Sheet Faux Teak Decking...
  • 【 Material 】 EVA Foam - ethylene vinyl acetate is a dense and...
  • 【Size and Color】 94.5"(L)x35.4"(W) ; 240cm(L)x90cm(W) ;...
  • 【 Easy to Install 】Its backing is a strong pressure sensitive...

The Ram 5500 Truck

The truck is a 2011 Ram 5500 flatbed that has been singled out. We bought it from a guy on Kodiak Island in Alaska, shipped it on the ferry, and Tom flew to meet it in Washington and drive it off the ferry.

Related: How To Find Used Overland Vehicles For Sale (And How We Found Ours)

Since then, we added Centramatics wheel balancers to help balance these large tires. Storage boxes on the truck bed provide tons of storage space for our gear. Finally, we had a welder custom fabricate an off-set hitch to mount our RoadMaster spare tire carrier.

In addition to all the truck upgrades, we had to modify the sewer system on the camper to work with the truck. We are using the Thetford Sanicon system which has been a great way to dump/ pump our tanks.

The Engine Rebuild (Complete Aug 2023)

The Ram truck has a Cummins 6.7 engine in it, the standard for RAM diesel trucks. The engine had suffered a cylinder 6 meltdown before we bought it due to a plugged EGR valve. The previous owner had the engine fully rebuilt using performance aftermarket parts. Unfortunately, a few major things were done wrong during the rebuild, and we ended up with a failure again only 30k miles later.

Our failure may not have been caused by the rebuild problems, but they probably contributed. One of our injectors in the engine (that was wrong for this particular engine) stuck open and leaked so badly that we had a hydro lock on startup. This cracked the engine head and bent the piston connecting rod on cylinder 6. In the video below, we detail what happened and the repair.

Cummins 6.7 Bent Connecting Rod: Complete Ram 5500 Teardown And Rebuild Due To Hydrolock

During the repair, we replaced many of the engine components and made many upgrades. The intended build of this engine is for longevity and fuel economy. Here are the major components we used in our drivetrain build.

  • Hamilton 178- 208 cam (had 188-220)
  • Hamilton Pushrods / Tappets 
  • XDP Trunnion Set 
  • Powerstroke Products Head+ HD springs + Firering Cut
  • Industrial Injection Injectors 
  • Mishimoto Thermostat 
  • Industrial Injection Fire Ring Head Gasket 
  • Mahel/Cummins crank, bearings, pistons 
  • Bulletproof Diesel Water Pump 
  • Dorman Lifetime Oil Cooler 
  • Fleece Coolant Bypass Kit 
  • Pusher 3.5-inch air intake +Silicone Boots 
  • S&B Cold Air Intake And Filter
  • South bend dual disc clutch 
  • High Gear Awesome G56 Trans Rebuild 


For this truck camper, we used almost the same system that we installed in our fifth wheel. You can learn more about it in this video.

How We Get Rock Solid RV Internet! - The Best Tech Solutions to Work Full Time From the Road

The major changes from this video are that we are using the Parsec Akita antenna which is the best antenna we have tried yet. We are also beta testers of Starlink which has been fun.

New Adventures Await

Follow along as we travel to new and remote places with this renovated overland truck camper. Subscribe to our newsletter and our YouTube channel to see where we take this beast!

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About Mortons on the Move

Tom & Caitlin Morton of Mortons on the Move gave up the stationary life for one where they are constantly on the move. They are full-time travelers, television hosts, and digital media producers.
They left their jobs, sold their house and possessions, and hit the road in September 2015 in their full-time “home on wheels”. Since then they have traveled the US, Canada, and even internationally by RV.
Now, they are Discovery Channel & PBS TV Co-stars of “Go North” on Amazon Prime Video, co-founders and instructors of RV Masterclass, and contributing authors for and an Arizona travel guide.

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Matt Lane

Monday 27th of March 2023

I keep drooling over this build. What was the total build weight of the Bigfoot after all of your upgrades, mods and improvements? I'm partly trying to determine if I need a 5500 or if I can comfortably use a 3500 dually.


Mortons on the Move

Monday 27th of March 2023

Its hard to say what the weight is fully built because there is a lot of gear we put in / on the truck. But we gross around 5700 lbs cargo when loaded. I think the camper comes in around 4500 fully loaded and wet (we always carry full water). The full truck build weighs in around 17500 (the truck is crazy heavy) But GVWR is 19500 and its well under all axles and tires which is important for off-road suspension movement.


Thursday 3rd of February 2022

I just bought a new truck camper. It has one 160 watt solar panel a charge controller a converter and separate inverter that runs 2 rv outlets off 2 6 volt lead acid batteries wired in series. All that being said I want to put in a battle born system similar to your truck camper build. What all do I need? Are there some things I can reuse or would I be better off removing those components and using all victron?

Mortons on the Move

Saturday 12th of March 2022

It's really up to you, the converter may or may not be able to fully charge the battle born (see if it has a setting for lithium or AGM). The charge controller is probably not the best either, but it should work. It really depends on how much you want to do upfront. Just dropping the batteries in will help enormously, but of course, having all the components that are designed to work together would be best. Check out our article about this

john urbas

Wednesday 1st of December 2021

May I say, "All I want for Christmas"?! Now that you have taken your rig out a bit, have you noticed any issues when traversing uneven terrain that causes you to go up on one rear at times? Also, payload capacity not being an issue, would have gone with SRW? Terrific and inspiring build!

PIerre Proulx

Friday 26th of November 2021

Congratulations for the amazing work you’ve done on this rig.


Friday 26th of November 2021

Great job !! You guys are the bomb ! Love watching your videos. I also follow your friends ...The Getaway Couple. Enjoy your travels and keep those video's coming !