NFR Toyota Tacoma Truck Bed Campers

DKL

Nude to the board
#1
Anyone in Seattle have either a Four Wheel Camper, All Terrain Camper, or Outfitter camper they would be willing to let me come check out? I decided to sell my camper van and go the bed camper route because I didn't want to maintain and insure 2 cars anymore but I didn't do enough research first. Apparently, pop up campers for Tacomas are like a unicorn. These campers are pretty spendy and I'd love the chance to see one first before driving a long distance and paying a bunch for something I have never actually seen. I've limited my choice down to one of these as they are much lighter than the Palomino/Northstar type pop up campers and my Tacoma's payload is disappointingly low.

Thanks,
David
 

Shapp

Active Member
#2
I have a roamin chariot camper that was built to fit on a ford ranger, but I have it on my tundra. I have had 2 tacomas, before the tundra and the the roamin chariot would have fit on those tacos as well. You can usually find them for sale used in Washington on a regular basis as they were originally made in spokane. Fore example this one (not affiliated with the sale in any way of this craigslist add):

https://spokane.craigslist.org/rvs/d/canopy-camper/6311847142.html

Used roamin chariots can be very nice, are light weight, and way way less than a new or used 4wheel camper or all wheel camper.

I got mine for $2200 several years ago used form some folks on Guames Island.
this is mine below (which I installed a 2 burner stove/sink combo from SMEV).

on my 4 door tundra:


on my old extra cab tundra:


Trip wo SE BC canada







Mt Bachelor Ski Trip


 
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#4
DKL, I saw a 4 door Tacoma at Cooper this summer with the smallest 4 Wheel pop up camper they make. Nice setup, but loaded he was overweight. Before you buy any camper, weigh your truck with a full tank and just yourself on board. Front axle weight and total. You will probably see the total weight is 5-600 lbs. heavier than what Toyota lists. I went through this on my 2001 Tundra when I bought a Jayco 7' Sportster pop up. With a full tank, full propane bottle and porta potti, It's 250 lbs. over the "gross vehicle weight". It's 250 lbs. under the front axle rating & 700 lbs. under the rear axle rating. Axle rating is more relevant. I added rear Timbrens & front Torklifts, turnbuckles in the back. Toyo AT 2's at 45 lbs. makes for a great ride, very stable. I've made trips to Cooper, Chopaka & 8 outstanding days at Kelly Creek. GVW rating is BS unless you get in an accident, then officer friendly & your insurance company will have a much different opinion! BTW I almost bought a Chariot, but I wanted full headroom, reefer and heater. Do your homework and good luck on your search!
 
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DKL

Nude to the board
#5
Thanks, good information. I have a deal in place for a used Phoenix camper and I’m working on mods to get the truck up to snuff to handle it. Any suggestions on where to go to weigh my truck ?
 
#6
Recycle stations will do it for you. I think there is still one in the South Park area. Phoenix Campers are well built and light. I looked at one that weighed only 650 lbs. Just too small for me and at my age, creature comforts are a priority!
 

Shapp

Active Member
#8
BTW I almost bought a Chariot, but I wanted full headroom, reefer and heater. Do your homework and good luck on your search!
Are you a giant? the inside height where you stand in the roamin chariot is over 7 feet tall. 12v plug-in type cooler works great for a "reefer" if you don't want to use a regular cooler. I installed a 2 burner/sink combo propane stove from SMEV and I also run an Olympian Wave3 heater off of it in my Roamin Chariot.
 
#9
You missed the keyword: FULL length headroom & I can sit up in bed. Way more storage, full dinette, 3.0 Reefer that makes ice and with a modification I made the porta potti is stored out of the way. Pretty much self contained. Anyway, we're comparing apples and oranges. BTW, nice job you did on yours.
 
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Shapp

Active Member
#10
I agree, apples and oranges. Having had both a tacoma and tundra (with serious after market beefed up suspension). Be carful with over loading a stock suspension tacoma with too much camper and gear. Especially if you ever plan on driving on anything but pavement or very well graded gravel (opinions formed from previously owning 2 tacoma trucks and 1 tundra, having put well over 200K on each of them for work and camping out of all of them numerous days per year for work, and now on my second tundra).

Don't take an over loaded taco here:


or here


or here

 
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Shapp

Active Member
#11
You missed the keyword: FULL length headroom & I can sit up in bed. Way more storage, full dinette, 3.0 Reefer that makes ice and with a modification I made the porta potti is stored out of the way. Pretty much self contained. Anyway, we're comparing apples and oranges. BTW, nice job you did on yours.
The key word missed in the OPs original post was "Tacoma", what you have won't fit on a Tacoma (weight-wise for sure) What I have will (both weight and dimensionally). Or maybe I can't read your writing. The way you wrote up the description of your setup, is that it is on a Tundra. Do you still have it on a Tundra or now on a Tacoma?
 
#12
The key word missed in the OPs original post was "Tacoma", what you have won't fit on a Tacoma (weight-wise for sure) What I have will (both weight and dimensionally). Or maybe I can't read your writing. The way you wrote up the description of your setup, is that it is on a Tundra. Do you still have it on a Tundra or now on a Tacoma?
I still have the Tundra....192,000 miles and nothing but preventive maintenance, which is expensive as I'm sure you know. I first mentioned the 4 wheel camper I saw at Cooper Lake because he did. I believe it's the only full size pop up camper that fits the Tacomas, without being seriously overloaded.
 

Shapp

Active Member
#13
I still have the Tundra....192,000 miles and nothing but preventive maintenance, which is expensive as I'm sure you know.
Not really. I put life time shocks, which get free replacement. Tires is about the most expensive and bakes. I change the oil every 20K (seriously) with regular oil. Just check it regularly and make sure it is full. I am on my 4th toyota with about 250K miles on each before I sold them. I don't baby them, run the hell out of them, and never had an issue. On the 2 tacomas, they were both standard transmission and each had the original clutch when I sold them with way over 200K miles on each. I don't do the factory recommended maintenance cause with my experience, it is totally unnecessary. I never even wash them.
 

DKL

Nude to the board
#14
Thanks so much for your input, it was of great help. I weighed my truck as suggested, total and each axle, and found I had a little more capacity than expected. I did end up getting the Phoenix camper and just got back from a week of testing it out. Pretty pleased with it. Definitely different than the eurovan camper but mostly in better ways. Airbags helped keep truck level, it drove well and handles the wind much better. Definitely reduced gas mileage but still pretty good.

DKL
96BCF410-16E9-4AB4-BD37-181F78DF5F2A.jpeg
 

DKL

Nude to the board
#15
BTW, on a totally different note, the image is at the visitor's center in Twin Falls Idaho and that is where the transaction went down. Very cool spot as it is next to the Snake. The bridge right there into town allows jumpers and doesn't require a permit. Pretty cool spot.
 

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