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Old 03-02-2012, 07:54 AM   #1
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Disappointed

Has anyone purchased a TC and been disappointed with their purchase for any reason, please share. I am new to TC and plan on hopefully purchasing one this summer. I just do not want to be disappointed on the size. I have a friend who believes they will be to small because my family just grew by 2 with twin boys. I just really like the idea of being able to camp anywhere and I'm a big fan of less is more. I also have a 88 YJ that I flat tow to CO and UT, so I have ruled out any traditional trailer due to the jeep. I am leaning toward Northstar because they are only 3 hours from my house, but I'm concerned they are not as well insulated as a Hallmark or an Outfitter.

Thanks,

jv
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Old 03-03-2012, 12:32 AM   #2
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First, no one can tell you what you can put up with. Some people have trouble with a 40' MH. Dw & I spent 2 mos in our 8 1/2' TC. It was tight but we were alright. I think a family of 4 will be rough in a TC. You don't say what size PU you have. A small PU and a big TC just won't work well. The big TCs need at least a 1T dually. Sounds like you may be better off with a small MH that will tow your toad. We have some friends that travel with a small PU wth a cab high topper and pull a small cargo trailer. They travel all over the country on buying trips. They sleep in back of PU and once a week or so get a motel for a night for showers etc. That is a little tight for me but they do fine.
Let us know what you have and want to do. I'm sure someone will tell you what their comfort zone is.
Good Luck
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Old 03-03-2012, 11:57 AM   #3
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I have a 2011 Tundra Crewmax TRD RockW. So I am limited on what TC I can use because of the 5.5 bed. I am considering a Northstar 650 with the extra bed because the cog is 3 inches in front of my rear axle. What is a MH you are referencing in your post, I do not have all the RV lingo down yet.
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Old 03-03-2012, 12:04 PM   #4
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MH = motor home.
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Old 03-04-2012, 09:41 PM   #5
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We recently sold our TC and bought a Toy Hauler. We are a family of 4 with a big dog so I guess that makes it 5 lol. Our truck camper was a mid 80's 8'10" and fairly open inside with a small bathroom (toilet only). The table converted to a double bed that was over 6ft long and the upper was a queen. The four of us slept quite comfortably in it but we very rarely ever set up the table as it was too much of a pain in the butt, we cooked inside and ate out....We always towed a small utility trailer to put gear in instead of moving it in and out of the camper.
We really didn't mind the small quarters as we really only slept in it, or on really nasty days it was a nice place to watch a movie or two.
When I bought the new SB truck the camper would no longer fit and when we looked at the new campers we found that most of the new SB campers are really designed for 2 and maybe one child so we bought a TH trailer instead. My kids art teens now and the TH will definately be nicer for them but I will miss the camper's ability to be taken to places that I will never take the TH...
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Old 03-07-2012, 09:06 PM   #6
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JV, I had, and still have a Cabover(have not used it in some time, planning to do a rehab job on it shortly for use on short trips for convenience) that we took on trips up to two weeks at a time when the kids were small. It worked fine when the kids were small. We traveled to the State of Maine, from Georgia at one time and to California at another via Grand Canyon, Key West, etc. So, we did quite a bit of camping. I wouldn't worry about the insulation too much if your not going to do a LOT of camping at the beach, or in the Winter. First, you might want to look for a used unit if possible. Because, at some point when the family gets larger....OR the boys get older, the cabover will get small. By then, you will be ready for a larger unit. But, the Cabover(TC) would probably be a good choice at this time for your family. You also might want to go to a nearby State Park, or other campground and talk with some folks who own a TC to get another point of view. Try not to spend a lot of money for your first unit if possible. Take care.
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Old 03-07-2012, 11:10 PM   #7
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I would concur that it's a good idea to start used. New campers can be really pricy, especially when you add popular options. My family used a hardside 9 1/2 footer in the seventies, not bad for 2 adults and two smaller kids. I recently bought a 9 1/2 foot pop up camper, old enough to not have cost all that much, but in good enough shape to use as is. Short box campers are all the rage, since the short box truck has become the norm. The problem with these units is that they can be difficult to balance front to rear, especially with an overhang. The under 5 foot campers are tougher yet. Some really great designs are available, but they look to me like 2 person campers. The toilet/showers in many of these are pretty small, often making use of an outside shower, and a porta potty. Whether this works for you depends on how much creature comfort you require, and how good a packer you are. Now in my 50's with a wife and only one child at home, I still wanted an interior shower and a bit more elbow room. The other factor rarely mentioned in the discussion of how much room you need is how big you are. Tall and heavy people take more room. I'm 6'2" and my daughter is going to be tall, an under sized dinette won't work for her long term and a tiny toilet is kind of hard for me to fold my legs up in to. Shorter, thinner people can be much more comfortable in a smaller camper.
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Old 03-10-2012, 10:48 PM   #8
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We started off with a 10 foot cabover fully self contained unit. When we started having our children the camper got too small quickly. All of the baby stuff was too much. We upgraded to a 12 foot cabover, and made the mistake of buying way too much camper for our truck, a 3/4 ton Chevy. We upgraded the truck to a one ton crewcab dually and did great with it.One thing to note is that most large campers tax a one ton dually truck to the max. Add people, fuel, water, gear, food, and a TOAD and your rig can get really heavy. If you have ever driven a truck with a cabover camper and dual rear wheels, you will never want to drive a truck and camper with single rear wheels. One tire failure, and it is all over except for the funerals. As our children grew into teenagers we changed to a 32 foot tt. After the children were grown and moved out on thier own we splurged to a 36 foot 5th wheel. Now we are back looking at tc's in the 9 foot range so we can tow a heavy boat behind the truck. Of course we are on our fourth crewcab dually. Honestly, even though you like the less is more concept, I think that the campers made for a truck with a 5 foot bed are going to be too small for a young family. I second the motorhome option. More room, one ton chassis, dual rear wheels, generator, and the list goes on.
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Old 03-10-2012, 10:57 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 5444 View Post
Has anyone purchased a TC and been disappointed with their purchase for any reason, please share. I am new to TC and plan on hopefully purchasing one this summer. I just do not want to be disappointed on the size. I have a friend who believes they will be to small because my family just grew by 2 with twin boys. I just really like the idea of being able to camp anywhere and I'm a big fan of less is more. I also have a 88 YJ that I flat tow to CO and UT, so I have ruled out any traditional trailer due to the jeep. I am leaning toward Northstar because they are only 3 hours from my house, but I'm concerned they are not as well insulated as a Hallmark or an Outfitter.

Thanks,

Since you asked! A Tundra Crewmax is not going to carry much camper. Your payload, bed size, etc. is just not conducive to a large camper. Your disappointment would be more with the truck than the camper. I think you have two choices -- a bigger truck, one that can handle a camper large enough for your family or a travel trailer. The truck you have could pull a TT that would be three times a big as any camper it could carry.
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Old 03-10-2012, 11:10 PM   #10
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You're thinking of putting a decent size camper on a Tundra?
I've got a Chevy 2500HD, and wouldn't put much of a camper on it. Tows a 35' fifth-wheel trailer great though. I know the commercials show the Tundra acting all macho, but in reality it's not much of a truck when it comes to carrying a heavy load. Get a 1-ton long bed dually, or get a toyhauler trailer. You can't even tow a fifth wheel trailer with a 5 1/2' bed.
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Old 03-11-2012, 11:36 AM   #11
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If you really like your Tundra....you might consider buying a used long bed turck and a used camper to try out. If it doesn't work out, you can resell with a minimum of loss. Buying a new camper, and then finding it doesn't suit you, could eat your lunch in depreciation if you sell it. There is a reason trucks came with 8 foot beds when most of them were used to actually haul payload.....balance, payload, space. Use the Tundra for daily use, and if you love the longbed...trade up next time.
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