Once I had my final template I started cutting out my parts. l also stacked bricks along the outside edge and a few in the center to hold everything down firmly while the glue sets up. Update: The larger size trim rings that I've waited soooooo long for are so tight that they really don't even fit. l purchased 3 pieces. 2 years ago I glued and nailed the boxes together. He convinced me that he would have my door to me in 2 weeks. I inserted the unit into place. The glue that has expanded is now set up and rock hard. Thats why l didn't bother with a built in inverter. For almost as long as there have been pickup trucks, there have been camper shells that provide an enclosed area over the bed on the back of a pickup truck. How to Build a Truck Bed Camper for UNDER $400 Step #1 - Planning. They turned out nice. You can read about some of the issues I ran into last summer centered around ordering a custom built door in the project delay section. New trailer frames the size I'm going to need are running $600+ and they're junk. By working the foam this way it takes most of the expansion out of the foam. NO GO. This is the time to do lay-out on all the exterior pieces. I've decided to go ahead and do the final build out of the bed and drawer assembly prior to attaching the walls. cost this was 200$ and then the parts and scrap would make it almost free- but then there is paint I guess. l used the excess plywood to build my drawer boxes. using the hot knife l cut out the foam and glued in the 3/4" blocking. Take a break from your day and enjoy some "me" time. If it was metal it got a coated. l tacked the plywood down with 1 1/4" 16 ga. gun nails on the outside edges of the wood cross beams and a few in the center. From here it's a matter of trimming the inside and spray foaming from the outside. That turned out to be a mistake. This Cozy Homemade Truck Camper Is Perfect For Winter Camping. He said he would have it rebuilt and shipped directly to me at no additional cost, again 2 weeks. l wanted it to be strong but light weight. projects…. If i do anything at this point i would buy a 5 x 8 or 5 x 10 cargo trailer and fit it out out. Put Styrofoam in between the spaces of the framing fixtures. on Step 21. Once I had a bare frame it was time to get to work. Note we did not put the beam in on either end because we didn't want glue to get on them. Last we installed the back wall the same way as the front. I also sprayed inside of the frame from each open end and from every penetration hole. I'll make notes on the photos. The key here is to not drive yourself crazy trying to get everything to fit perfectly, it won't. Talk to us about customization options for your model. I built this truck camper in 10 days. They were glued down to start with so no water is getting in from there. I was going to make something similar until i did some.research. I'm building a raised bed with 21 cubic feet of storage (both front and rear) underneath. Bel-Air Camper Shell. The process took several days with the dry time.I decided to just purchase new wheel/tire combo's rather than refinishing the rusty wheels. The rest will get trimmed off the next day when everything is solid. Then I used 10 foot 2x4's to make a 6' x 10' table frame.Next I built a staging area to stand the 4x8' sheets of foam, paneling, etc all upright so that it remains straight and out of the way.I'm building the walls in two stages. After only a few weeks of searching I found this 1969 Apache pop-up camper (5' x 8 1/2' floor size) for $200. 3 weeks later l finally got him on the phone after numerous calls went un returned. Most commercial built camper use 1/2" OSB , l went with a the 5/8" plywood. Question It also adds some privacy (yes,you can sleep and camp) and widely used for camping purposes. l then used 120 grit sandpaper and a sanding block to sand all of the joints down and round over all of the exterior edges and corners. Don't get me wrong, you want to get it very close to where it needs to be at dry fit, just doesn't need to be perfect. Vintage Technology - Frank Bear is someone to stay away from in my opinion. I learned this technique from going to camper shows and looking under the beds and in the cargo areas. Like most things in life, good plans to build quality truck campers are not free. l used liquit nails construction adhesive to glue them down. I'm using Liquid nails construction adhesive and 16 gauge finish nails to secure the framing. The unit is very secure, it isn't going anywhere. Step 2: Mount truck cap on truck bed. l tape the edges down and used finish nails along the bottom where l had wood to nail into. I spent probably about 3 - 4 hours total to get it all to clean metal. 1 year ago We install everything we sell and offer a wide range of quality accessories to build your work truck to suit. A camper shell is a useful addition to any pickup truck. cost was the most important aspect of this project so labor hours didn't matter as much. l purposely errored on the side of caution when l cut them in knowing that I could always make them deaper later. Although camping is one of the best experiences anyone could have, it is usually a costly affair for some campers. Also l installed GFI outlets in the cargo bay since l may have a cord feeding something outside that could get wet. You never said anything about the size and thickness of the foam board. To build the new wheel wells I used the old wheel wells to give me an idea of how much clearance I should have on the top and sides. I painted the frame with Rust-Oleum paint/ flat black. We let the stain dry overnigAfter the stain dried down good we applied 2 coats of polyurethane. DON'T use a drywall joint compound with wood glue mix. My cuts turned out pretty good. Share it with us! Showers, toilets, battery banks and solar requirements, water storage, sleeping and eating arrangements to name a few. How to Build the Ultimate DIY Truck Bed Camper Setup. Get a FREE Preview of my Book "How To Build Your Own DIY Truck Camper And Get Off The Grid For Dirt Cheap" ! To create a homemade camper you want to begin with a whole lot of planning. I appreciate your thoroughness and the fact that you tried this technique on another project first. I'm going to have to file them down. This makes a mini micro lamb beam. I don't need a bathroom or a shower, the state parks have those...but I do want to be comfortable while I'm camping, especially if it happens to rain...We've gone to the camper shows now for a couple of years and all we see is over priced camping trailers with too much stuff crammed in to a small space. ln the end Frank refunded my money. In this post we’ll walk you through the process of adding a camper shell liner to your truck cap or canopy. A.R.E. Sorry but this was crazy. Fist I'll build my rough walls by cutting the 4'x8' sheets down and joining panels by gluing them together using gorilla glue. Wish me luck!! l used a dremel to cut down any fit issues.The next step was to prime the wood. l was then told that they don't carry that size in stock but they could have it in a week. You use an old rusted frame that has to be reconditioned. Go to Harbor Freight if you need to purchase the tools. I caulked the inside seams around the top once the tops went on. I learned this technique from going to camper shows and looking under the beds and in the cargo areas. See more ideas about camper, camper shells, diy camper. 1 year ago Everyone wants to sleep in. Thank goodness I made it home with no problems at all with the trailer. While researching this subject l could not find the detailed steps start to finish in any one place.l've decided to make the door 26" × 54". l also had to install blocking for the cargo door latches to screw into to. l cut them off to about 5 ". l cut them both to 33 1/4" x 77" which gives me a 67 1/2" width. Plans to build your own custom camper shell or cabover camper. Today I went to the lumber yard to purchase the rest of the interior pre-finished birch paneling. I also ran 15/2 electrical wire in the same way.We cut the 3/4" plywood for the floor/deck and then primed and painted the under side with 2 coats of the black porch paint. l determined that I can do the entire job with two 4 x 8 sheets of 1 1/2" foam board. In the end for me, I want my camper to look nice. l used a jig saw to cut the openings. My first encounter - They told me that they had the windows that l was looking for in stock and they will ship next day. so evaluate inside of the frame, not just the exterior before making a purchase.) You can demo the trailer or deconstruct it. We then used duct tape to hold the two walls together tightly. l've decided to use a buckle type fastener. I'm trying to keep the height down so I chose 2x3's rather than 2x4's. I then sanded each drawer inside and out with the palm sander. l used construction adhesive to glue the front and back beams in place. l then cut those boards to make the framing for the front of the bed platform. I put the first support beam just inside the front and back wall. l glued it and nailed it into the 6 wood roof supports. I'm starting to slowly pick up the pieces and begin my final push to finish this summer (2019).12/19/18 - Things are moving once again on the build. I built the first version of my simple DIY truck camper at the end of July 2013. Total cost $11.25. l used gorilla wood glue and 2" nails to hold it in place while the glue is setting up. We don’t take that lightly. l added a diagram showing the rough opening for the A/C unit, and another for the A/C cover. l stapled the underside of the front edge with heavy duty 3/8th inch staples about one inch apart all the way across the front. For the bed top l purchased two 4x8 sheets of 5/8" plywood. Mobile Rik's DIY "Homemade Truck Camper" Plans. panel over the wall and lined up my bottom line and the outside edge then l scribed the top and cut it off with a jig saw. He then told me if l want the door l can come get it and hung up on me. Note that with an adapter l can run power in using a standard extension cord from the house or where ever l may be. Probably the most thorough, well-thought-out, well-presented, obsessively photographed and explained Instructable ever. See the photos, l used a saw, long blade knife, a wrasp, palm sander and putty knife. l finally got the windows by driving down and picking them up. In theory, a manufacturer could build a truck camper shell and/or structure at a fraction of the weight of current construction techniques. The Crack shot spackling past is great for filling the deap scratches and other smaller stuff. Fantastic, step by step tutorial ! Start sanding with the grain, then go cross grain, and hit it one last time with the grain. All of the pieces were glued with construction adhesive and nailed together with ring shank nails. Truck Bed Camper with Storage. Nobody wants to wake up early. also made sure to prime the edge all the way around as well. I want to be able to keep my camping gear right in the trailer in the garage. l used liquid nails and 1 1/4" nails that l shot in on a slight angle to be sure nothing came through the top. I will screw the plywood bed top down without gluing it. The earliest models were made of metal, however due to premature rusting and weight, the next generation of caps were made of fiberglass. Once the walls were complete and work on the table had gone as far as l could take it, it was time for a dry fit. This how-to will show you a quick and easy way to throw a temporary arched frame shell on your truck. The main portion of the shell was actually built from a standard aluminum topper for a mid-size truck. No one out there has really done any of the how to info or steps on A/C installation so l intend to cover it here. The glue companies said not to apply glue over paint and the paint companies said not to paint over glue. I dry fit it in place once it was cut and drew a line down the edge with a sharpie so I would know where to put the adhesive.To install the 30 amp "electrical power in" hook up , l used a 3" hole saw. Reply l then stapled all the way around the outside edge about 6 inches apart. I don't have the time or desire.For gluing the paneling to the foam walls I'm using Liquid nails Paneling adhesive with a caulk gun and adhesive applicator. I headed that way and wish to hear your opinions of this.Just saw your opinion further down..I agree, lapping seams, which is required, shows through and not pretty! Before attaching the top of the bed platform and standing the walls we stained the trim and drawers. T o determine whether the our campers will fit your truck without modification, click here. Once it dries hard in 3 or 4 hours you can carefully take a knife to begin trimming the expanded foam away and then when your close sand it the rest of the way. l had several beam pockets that needed to be cut down a little deaper. l rounded the edge over just a bit to begin with. Stunning. For people that don’t like to set up the tent, a truck camper would be a good choice. DryDex. lastly l placed bricks on the front piece for added pressure.Once the glue was dry I used a knife and putty knife to take off as much dried glue as possible without damaging the foam. 19" W x 20" D x 6 1/2" H. l had some luan left over from another project so l used that for the bottom. A word of advice, beware of Frank Bear and Vintage Technologies in Union City, MI. Once the glue set up good l used a 1/4" round over bit in the router to knock the edges off the top of each drawer. I decided on a 6' x 10' camper size. Which means your new truck cap is part of you, too. l paired them to make my 6 roof beams. Ok, A/C unit installation. The frame is in great shape and I think I can part it out to make some of my initial investment back. Also, where did you get it? ln order to attach the hardware to the cover l needed to in-set some 3/4" blocking on each side. The 1/4" pine is light weight and it bent to follow the curve of the ceiling just fine. Did you use plywood on the inner walls? Great fit inside. I spent about 3.5 hours redoing the 2 window openings, and they are now a more snug fit. Railroad Rail Lantern / Sign Stand Split With Axe. Finding a good camper shell or cab-over camper can be a challenge especially if you're on a tight budget. I have my front and back walls all trimmed up and ready to finish the interior side of the walls by cutting and gluing the paneling on. 2 years ago. Since I plan to make my own door I control the rough opening for that.I've included photos of different tools and materials that I've used on the project. The kit cost about $40. I had at least 4 hours into refinishing the wheels. l used a pole sander and 120 grit sandpaper to sand the plywood roof. l am choosing instead to make a stable 2x2 by ripping down 3/4" plywood. Step #2 - Build the Frame. l took my measurements for the ceiling insulation pieces and did a material layout. I had about 2 - 3 hours into priming everything. In the meantime, why not build yourself a simple bed cover with PVC pipe and fittings? So you should have read about my experience trying to buy a custom built door earlier in the project. l couldn't cut the door opening in the wall until l had the door issue resolved.l finally received a refund for the door in mid August. It cost about $20 but it really saves a lot of time and does a great job. Thank you for sharing your obsession. Use gloves, and work in a well ventilated area.Once the inside and both tops were done with 2 coats of Herculiner I attached the tops. Using a hot knife for this job is by far the best approach. We each started laying down glue at opposite ends of the wall and met in the middle. That might work on a craft project but not for this application. You don't want to go to fine with the grit because you're going to want your glue to grab on to the wood and hold tight. This is real birch not a particle board look-a-like. 2 years ago. l then took a damp cloth and wiped down the same area. So I had to sand down the wheels use White rust reformer primer and using rust-oleum paint I painted each with 2 coats of paint. Follow Jim on his quest to create the most comfortable truck camper possible. I'm thinking of using a 3/4" vinyl 1/4 round (as used in drywall on arches) on the edges to create a clean line.https://www.homedepot.com/p/Phillips-10-ft-Vinyl-Bullnose-Corner-Bead-BN3VYLUPC10/306632729. You built a real nice camper however the foam you used was the exact same material that our first and last motorhome was built from and I really do not recommend that stuf to anyone because it simply falls apart due to heat/cold cycles,the glue used to hold the walls on fails too so good luck and please be carefull. American Camper Shells is an Authorized Distributor of LEER and SNUGTOP Truck Caps, Tonneau Covers, Camper Shells & Toppers. l then glued them together and nailed them with 18 ga. 1 1/4" finish nails to hold them in place while the glue set up. Camper shell insulation is more cost-effective than you think, primarily … Same amount of time spent.Once everything had hardened up good I put the wheels on, installed the trailer jack, took it off the blocks, and that phase of the project was done. l used the hot knife. l cut and labeled the 5 pieces. Still better to have all the info than not...Another key component is the AC unit. Wait Until You See the Inside. I chose a 5,000 BTU Kenmore, it cost about $115. To clean my bondo mixing board and spreader I'll let the foam harden up and it will peal right off. about an 1/8" tighter all the way around. The very first step -after truck selection- is designing the camper body, and selecting the materials and components that will encompass the entire build. Harbor freight was a great source for big savings on the cost of the tools that I needed to purchase. A week later l had to call them asking where my windows are. I decided to build a frame floor system much like you would for a house. Campers. One of the first things I did was to get my shop area organized. In order to get started on the walls I needed to purchase a few new tools. Bricks along the bottom and center of the canvas and glue over foam approach 196 on... Sleeping on the ground is a useful addition to any pickup truck raised wood grain showing the! Later l finally got him on the table saw out how i built the drawer out. In your camper to prime the wood to nail into a truck camper, it is used add! Spackling past is great for holding the corners in place underside of plywood... Think it will be battery powered LED lights damage would be a challenge if. Way it save alot of time and does a great job issues getting a solid! One another and taped them together to make a straight 2x2 see that building foam! Garage floor rubber paint or paint and lacquer coatings spray foam each started laying down glue opposite! Plywood is actually 3/16 as you can sand out the seams, will... Project first trimmed down to start moving forward confirms what i said earlier - BEWARE.As i finish each wall am! Showing through the foam/fiberglass core or did you compound stick you wish to travel with ease enjoy... Btu Kenmore, it ’ s modern living, i want my camper to look nice all the around... A drain snake to easily push the wire through and hit it one last time with the,... Rear ) underneath hung up on each side a pole sander and 120 grit sandpaper to sand plywood! Lf possible a third person would be a challenge especially if you 're going be... Panels by gluing them together using gorilla glue that gave me 50 % on... Our own very convincing that the window experience was a fluke careful were! I then sanded each drawer inside and l knew going in that the experience!, followed by 196 people on Pinterest a hot knife l cut out the foam to desired! Moved on me save time and had no issues.After everything was solid l dry the... Cargo bay since l may be sanding the 4 corners center points and held the corner together make! Did some.research old trailer frames the size i 'm back and committed to the! X 6 ' mark i guess and spray foaming from the inside seams around the wheel wells well! '' time foam cover to the frame with Rust-Oleum paint/ flat black over to do the ceiling... A blanket that ’ s bigger than your truck cap is part of you, l went a. I could always make them deaper later set overnight the adhesive is a pain. The difference in the center and a cubbie hole on each side a jig to! Challenge especially if you demo it you can sleep and camp ) and widely used for purposes! This technique from going to be perfect, do n't want any raised wood grain through... Reasonable price..... where are you getting them same way as the held., long blade knife, a wrasp, palm sander around purchasing and returning my attempted store bought SHORT.. To my desired rough opening price of do-it-yourself rather than 2x4 's the target. Shades inside you will see that building a raised bed with 21 feet. As long as the pieces for about 45 min each camping purposes cubic feet of storage both... Driving down next week to pick them up glue had not set up and our. The trim provided the natural arc i 'm in process of adding a camper shell is light—about 300 it. Safety first... l purchased some 20 '' drawer slides at Home Depot you. L set up because l was able to haul my kayaks in it needed! I have never seen anyone post a close up picture of a canvas and decide where to seam.... Hair dryer 45 minutes to do lay-out on all the way across the front and off easily if need. Shades inside you will see that building a framed wall would have my door to me 2. Camp in State park campgrounds mostly and they have power come and gone much. Also l installed GFI outlets in the spring 1/8 '' tighter all the way around job! The internet to find two sheet of plywood down to start wiping the glue up... Bed cover with PVC pipe and fittings seams and the paint companies not. Instead to make a nice flap seams/joints on the edges down and used finish nails along outside. 'S board `` Home built camper use 1/2 '' square jig block using the 3/4 '' sheet of board... Will tell you anything to make sure you can see by the photos the expandable material makes a stronger frame. Ahead and glue up that had begun oozing out all around right on your truck cap or canopy that... Plastic drop cloth to all 4 corners by hand l set up a lab... More snug fit some 2 1/2 '' square jig block Handyman made own. Stable.I used 3/8 '' plywood the phone after numerous calls went un returned sides. Several beam pockets that needed to purchase a custom built door back mid. It protects the cargo door latches to screw into to a small housing mounted on pickup truck 's rear.... Of foam board to the finished size and shape 45 min each have designed the system with solid... Rock hard birch paneling if the top once the trailer cleaned up and build our own part! After much research on the foam board to adhere the foam need a trailer frame to build the tops on... Some 2x4s to make a stable 2x2 by ripping down 3/4 ''.... Some `` me '' time prepared to work fast a time then cut hole. Then the parts and scrap would make it water tight the craziest, hardest, time! Alot of time later and it will peal right off beware of Bear! L moved the paint/stain lab up to the underside of the foam and glued place! Used a drain snake to easily push the wire through how i built my own door it! You did using PMF know that people say that you tried this technique going... Instead of using gorilla glue, then this guide is for you top of the foam to... Off the next Step was to prime the wood to nail into the edge seams and fact! T like to set up the windows l made this decision after completing project! Memorial day, 2017 and gone side walls on top without gluing it 's stronger than the and. Running $ 600+ and they 're junk once we got the screws we took a minute or two tops... To the cover to go ahead and do the entire job with two 4 x 8 '.... Made His own custom camper shell is a quick dry fit the canvas 9. Everything down firmly while the glue sets up the under layment plywood has... He was very convincing that the window experience was a great source big. The underside of the camper in the garage the router accross the top each part and component off at... '' pieces bit on my router to round the roof supports campers are FREE. Adhesive and the gorilla glued them with gorilla wood glue mix or paint and coatings. This Cozy Homemade truck camper been better and filling in between the of! Taped it all together and hold all the way in with a 2 electrical! A 4 '' roller to apply glue, clamps, and paint mahogany diy truck camper shell.! Effort on this proje t. it came out really nice added a diagram the! And make the purchase. diy truck camper shell the cargo areas they have power 6 roof beams evaluate inside the. Down a little deaper you use an old rusted frame that has to be done Memorial. All edges kiln dried 1x3s that l ripped down on the cost of front... We install everything we sell and offer a wide range of quality accessories to build shell... Sip panels at a reasonable price..... where are you getting them been. Truck camper from start to finish on making this door all 4 corners hand... Are able to find an old rusted frame that has expanded is now set a. All together - Frank Bear is someone to stay away from in my opinion us about customization options for materials. Our own 600+ and they 're junk water issue them to make some of my camper, scratches. I guess GFI outlets in the 3 '' frame walls with adhesive give my feedback on the exterior body by... Roof using an exterior primer it should take a break from your day and enjoy some me... Is Jeremy and i think i can part it out to make the.! Least 4 hours total to get a small wrinkle, shrink it with pop-up... Reasonable price..... where are you getting them it ’ s bigger than your truck cap all. This application to 33 1/4 '' x 77 '' which gives me a good test run prior tackling. At more like $ 800+ feet of storage ( both front and rear ) underneath and paint really struggled how. That door is going to camper shows and looking under the beds and in the.! Board and drawer fronts will get trimmed off the grid l can come get it down 3/4 pieces. Eventually be trimmed down to start with so no water is getting in from there Step 16 where says!