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Old 10-25-2020, 06:02 PM   #1
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Campers with Holding Tanks in Basement

I have a older lance camper 10.5 ft with gen. this camper has served me well but I'm considering a newer eagle cap camper same length and about the same weight. So this newer model has the holding tanks farther forward than my old unit.
My question is, with the basement models, the camper is taller with the basement storage. Has any of you driven older unit and newer and can say wither these newer taller units have greater sway around corners or curves?

Thanks in advance loren
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Old 10-27-2020, 12:14 PM   #2
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I have used *many* campers in the past, and I came to the conclusion that I hate them all. Especially the ones with the old Generac Inverter LP genset.

Despite my pickup (2001 F350 7.3PS CrewCab 4wd custom bed) being upgraded with camper / ambulance package, I always felt unstable. Everything may have been normal and typical, I just never like the way the truck handled.

The only real issue I had was I had a Renet brand camper (I think) on my work truck and was sent to Kenai AK for a few weeks. I was just 3 or so inches too tall for ferry vehicle area. Ended up driving onto ferry as far as I could, deflate tires, driver further, clear obstruction by 1 inch or so (above roof line, not air conditioner). They made me dismount camper, pull ahead and then anchor everything. Cost me an additional $3200. At least I was able to charge to company that sent me there.
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Old 10-27-2020, 02:40 PM   #3
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I'm surprised you haven't heard from some of the other "basement camper" owners by now.

Unlike Krbjmpr, we enjoyed the campers we had from 1978 to 2015 when we sold the last one and had a couple of class A MHs. MHs are out now and we now have another TC.

Our campers were all "non basement" types and we had no problem at all on the AK Ferries from Prince Rupert to Skagway with stops in between. I did look at some basement models while on the search for the one we have now, and I too thought there may be a bit more "top heaviness" than non basement models. There were also a lot more steps necessary to get into one. I have poor balance and that was one of the things against us having one. I hadn't considered a problem such as the one getting on the ferry, but it is good to know that.

Best of luck with your choice.

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Old 10-27-2020, 03:52 PM   #4
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extra steps

Yes I've noticed that there will be at least two more steps . Not everyone's cup of tea.
So I see [at least i think] that there's an advantage for cold weather camping the tanks in the basement. That's good.
But never though about the extra height causing a problem like getting onto a ferry or perhaps some low overhead train overpass .. probably fewer than a few years ago.
My concern is before I buy one, is has anyone noticed a larger tendency to sway with the higher top load?
Thanks for all the reply's so far
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Old 10-27-2020, 05:39 PM   #5
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I am over 13' tall and do not have problems on the ferries.

Many things affect sway: Tires, Springs, Stabilizer bars, Shocks - You have to tweak each setup a little differently, but you cannot expect the truck to handle like it was empty.
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Old 10-28-2020, 09:00 AM   #6
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My ferry experience may have been unique. There was obstruction at boat entrance. If I was able to load middle, it wouldn't have been an issue. I don't think it would have been. Work truck up there was lifted a bit, yes was 4x4 and I was issued sno-trax once got to the shop.

The problems encountered were mine completely. I knew I was tall, but Much more than typical 18 wheeler. I did mention to sales over phone, was told not an issue...

My personal pickup (at the time) had the ambulance / camper package. My capacity was near 18000 gvcw. Required G Range tires.

I just didn't like the feeling of instability. Never had any problems, was just the feeling. Many dealers, and even Lance factory (i think was Lance, near Bakersfield CA I think) inspected. They promptly added support above cab and slapped dealer for letting it out without it. That helped.
I didn't have any problems with driving or maneuvers. It very well could have been the difference between unloaded / trailer / fifth wheel / camper loads. Hard to explain. I can only say I didn't like the experience. Much the same when moving a pallet+ of concrete.
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Old 10-29-2020, 01:47 PM   #7
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I have had both types of campers, they both sway, we added stable loads and sway bar, that helps a great bit. It's the options you get with a camper that out way the drive.
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Old 10-29-2020, 09:03 PM   #8
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Found this looking for another pic,
thought everyone in truck-camperdom
would enjoy or could strive for.

Click image for larger version

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Old 10-29-2020, 09:23 PM   #9
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What’d that camper ever do to him.
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Old 11-02-2020, 02:09 PM   #10
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yes they raise the center of gravity but I wouldn't own one without a basement; you just need to have the right truck and setup. My Current Bigfoot 30C10.11 is about as big as campers get but the truck handles it fine though I have custom overload spring packs and Rancho 9000 shocks.....and DRW's, of course.

Outdoors RV 21RBS, 2003 Dodge 3500 dually, Cummins, 6 spd.
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camper, tank

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