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How To Load A Truck Camper Onto A Pickup Truck In 10 Minutes (By Yourself)

Do you crave off-the-beaten-path camping spots? Do you prefer to wild camp away from the hustle and bustle of campgrounds? If so, you’re going to have to know how to load and upload your truck camper by yourself.

Truck campers are smaller RVs that allow you to experience parts of the outdoors that you wouldn’t otherwise have access to with a larger trailer or motorhome.

In this video, you’ll learn how to prepare your pickup truck to accept a truck camper, as well as get an in-depth tutorial on loading and unloading it. The setup in the video is an Arctic Fox 811 camper and a 2005 Ford F-350 pickup truck.

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Basic overview of loading a pickup camper into a truck bed. (Skip to 5:00 to bypass the setup discussion)

Original video by amped79

He makes it look so easy, and I found the advice in the setup phase particularly helpful.

Some useful discussion from the comments to the video:

If you liked the tie-downs in the video, they’re made by Torklift.

They are called Torklift Fastguns. I love them they make the tie down process very quick and easy. Highly recommended.

Some campers wonder about damaging their truck’s paint job or strucutral integrity when loading and unloading a truck camper. A YouTube commenter wondered if the dents and dings on the rear of the truck in the video were caused by the truck camper body itself.

There are no bends or dents from the camper, but there could be a few scrapes in the paint from the camper rubbing against it.  I drive this rig down some very rough roads.  Many of the scratches inside the truck box would be from me hauling gravel or bark mulch or stuff around my yard (day to day use)  Some people would opt for a spray in bed liner which i may do one day as well.

Will this truck camper fit my short box truck?

…this camper as well as many others are made for a shortbox. My trucks box is also a shortbox 6ft 9″..

Did you do any modifications to the camper?

I added a product called Torklift Stable Loads. They are about a 3″ block that replaces the stock 3/4″ overload spring engaging block which makes the overload spring engage quicker and keeps the back about 2″ higher because of that. The only other mod i did was Rancho 9000 adjustable shocks which helped with bobbing around on rough roads but did not change ride height.

Does the camper stay secured when going up grades?

You would be somewhat correct about the weight of the camper holding it in place. The securing bars keep it from shifting around somewhat though.  Inside the truck bed is a rubber mat which you can see in the video near the beginning which keeps the camper from sliding out or around compressed by its own weight (4,000lbs).  Largest incline i have ever done was about 30degrees on an extremely rough gravel road and the camper stayed put.  Center of gravity is ahead of the rear wheel so the rig is balanced. (no weight is lifted off the front axle during loading).  The legs as you call them are called jacks, they are rated at 2500lbs each.  They could fail, the connection point to the camper itself could fail, but no more likely then an RV trailer tire or axle could fail imo.  I see nothing wrong with the way the power cord is connected, its easily unlocks from the camper by twisting a locking device and unplugging it.

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