Camper box for cab over truck

Design & Construction of anything that's not a teardrop e.g. Grasshoppers or Sunspots

Camper box for cab over truck

Postby Nathyne » Mon Jan 20, 2020 11:43 pm

Hello everyone,

I am in the process of importing a small cab over truck (Nissan Atlas ~5x10ft bed) and am planning on building a small camper box for it with a bed, basic electronics and basic sink (think of the van conversions with two jugs and a foot pump).

Wanted some opinions on the construction and design. The max payload of the truck is 1500kg so should have lots of room to work with! Here are my plans so far:

Base:
2x4 pressure treated with 1/2" ply and a barrier. 12" on center.

Walls:
2x2s with a 2x4 on each corner 16" on center skinned with 1/4" ply inside and out

Roof:
Undecided on a flat roof or if I should frame the walls with a slight angle towards the rear. A slight curve might also work? Maybe 3/4" ply cut with a nice curve.

Framing:
For assembling the framing I have seen MANY different ways people have put it together. Pocket holes, toe nail, L brackets all sorts. I was thinking a screw into each stud from the opposing side with some glue would suffice.

Exterior
For finishing the outside I was thinking of doing pmf then fully priming and painting the box inside and out before the insulation and interior skin goes on.

Attached is a quick sketchup drawing of the wall and floor framing. Final dimensions, windows and doors still need to be sorted out.

Little bit of a disorganized post but hopefully everyone understands what I mean!

Thanks

Hmm seems the sketchup drawing doesnt want to attach Here is an image instead.
Attachments
Camper box img.png
Camper box
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Re: Camper box for cab over truck

Postby RJ Howell » Tue Jan 21, 2020 6:31 am

I'm design a build for my F150 that may give you another approach. I also want a standee, but don't like the height while driving. I'm headed pop-top.

This will be 6'-4" inside x 11ft long. You could adjust sizing. Travel height (roof lower) 5ft.

Image
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Re: Camper box for cab over truck

Postby Philip » Tue Jan 21, 2020 1:10 pm

Does this truck have a flatbed or pickup bed on it?

Do you plan on using the bed as a mounting base for the camper?
Here is my build.

viewtopic.php?f=50&t=67073
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Re: Camper box for cab over truck

Postby RJ Howell » Tue Jan 21, 2020 2:04 pm

Philip wrote:Does this truck have a flatbed or pickup bed on it?

Do you plan on using the bed as a mounting base for the camper?


Currently it has a bed, which will be removed. My build will be frame up.

For you, you would be only over the frame. You cab is higher than mine, yet the idea is the same. No reason to build and travel at height! Pop the Top. Westfalia did it for years and now everyone is following and improving. Build solid to cab height and pop the rest. The aerodynamics' just works!

At the frame, I'm playing in design of the steel channels already in play. Saves on weight to strength ratio. A basic steel frame support of key elements.
Image

For the most part, mine will be XPS foam built. Something you may wish to consider.
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Re: Camper box for cab over truck

Postby tony.latham » Tue Jan 21, 2020 4:12 pm

I looked at what a Nissan Atlas is. That'll make a sweet camperoo.

It would be an easy thing to roll that front into a bit of a curve. Otherwise, this box could end up looking like a garden shed.

I wouldn't be concerned with the roof being flat. You'll be challenged to find a perfectly level place to park it.

Tony :beer:
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Re: Camper box for cab over truck

Postby Nathyne » Tue Jan 21, 2020 9:28 pm

Philip,

The truck will have a flat bed on it with drop sides. Will look something like this one.

I plan to fasten it much in the same way a normal camper is put on but directly to the tie down points and no belly bars if I can manage that. I will need to look closer once I have a truck in my hands! Still have a broker tracking one down for me.


Ya a curve may definitely help the aesthetics! I'll have to figure out how to draw one in sketchup. Might be easier to cut out in actual wood haha.
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Re: Camper box for cab over truck

Postby pchast » Tue Jan 21, 2020 9:46 pm

JMHO:
All that 2X framing is going to be pushing the total weight high... I think you may need to
reconsider your approach.
:thinking:
Try metal framing or foam construction.......... Take your plan and add up all the components
weight before you start your build. Its surprising the amount of weight you will add with your
living needs; clothes, food and water/waste.....
:NC
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Re: Camper box for cab over truck

Postby GTS225 » Wed Jan 22, 2020 8:10 am

The beauty of that type of platform is the storage boxes he could build in under the edges of the flatbed. Battery bank, fresh water tank, waste water (if he's going that route), awning or pop-up, etc. That would really open up space in the living quarters.

Roger
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Re: Camper box for cab over truck

Postby Philip » Wed Jan 22, 2020 7:34 pm

Nathyne wrote:Philip,

The truck will have a flat bed on it with drop sides. Will look something like this one.

I plan to fasten it much in the same way a normal camper is put on but directly to the tie down points and no belly bars if I can manage that. I will need to look closer once I have a truck in my hands! Still have a broker tracking one down for me.


Ya a curve may definitely help the aesthetics! I'll have to figure out how to draw one in sketchup. Might be easier to cut out in actual wood haha.


Good your leaving the factory flat bed on. No need to build heavy then. The FB will provide all the lower structure stability. Like pcast said. all that 2x2 stock will add up fast. 2x2 is listed at just under 1 pound per foot. A sheet of 1/4" underlay/ply is around 13 pounds depending on MFG.

In my signature is a link. That is to a small popup camper I built a couple of years ago. Look at construction of it. I could have went lighter than I did.
Here is my build.

viewtopic.php?f=50&t=67073
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Re: Camper box for cab over truck

Postby tony.latham » Wed Jan 22, 2020 8:11 pm

Nathyne wrote:Philip,

The truck will have a flat bed on it with drop sides. Will look something like this one.

I plan to fasten it much in the same way a normal camper is put on but directly to the tie down points and no belly bars if I can manage that. I will need to look closer once I have a truck in my hands! Still have a broker tracking one down for me.


Ya a curve may definitely help the aesthetics! I'll have to figure out how to draw one in sketchup. Might be easier to cut out in actual wood haha.


Check out Dan Lott’s YouTube videos on how to design a teardrop in Sketchup. That’ll help you with that front curve.

T
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Re: Camper box for cab over truck

Postby Nathyne » Fri Jan 24, 2020 11:12 pm

Thanks for the responses!

I have purchased a truck, now the 5-6 week wait for it to come from Japan. Ill take a look at some other framing and construction ideas. A quick look seems all the wood framing would add up to the realm of 750lbs plus any weight of the contents and canvas skin.
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Re: Camper box for cab over truck

Postby WizardOfOdds » Sat Jan 25, 2020 12:47 pm

Just saw this on Craiglist, not sure how long the link will work.
Image
Image
https://washingtondc.craigslist.org/nva/pts/d/front-royal-truck-cap-truck-camper-shell/7058519401.html
I post it as an option for readers who already have a suitable pick-up. It is not really a camper, I would not sleep or put anything heavy in the over-cab, but if you can get it with windows in the side and rear doors, it might appeal to some builders. Does anyone know who makes these???
WizardOfOdds: Chalet shaped rag roof clam shell TIER drop for 4 cylinder tow
Tip Top Tier Drop thread http://www.tnttt.com/viewtopic.php?f=5&t=56232
Unusual Designs thread http://www.tnttt.com/viewtopic.php?f=5&t=64495
Tale of 2 Trailers thread http://www.tnttt.com/viewtopic.php?f=35&t=61451
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Re: Camper box for cab over truck

Postby AeroNautiCal » Sun Mar 15, 2020 4:02 am

Looks like a 'utility service van' model possibly made by
royaltruckbody.com but no longer in production.
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