The HuntingPA.com Outdoor Community banner

1 - 20 of 21 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
221 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
I'm setting up a truck cap for camping, one to two night stays. Built a cot frame just above the wheel well. Layed one inch foam board on the floor and will cover that with one half inch plywood to protect the foam. Cut to fit two inch foam board around the truck bed sides (has bedliner with a fiberglass cap). Made a small stand to hold a one burner propane camp stove and also surface for tent heater. YES, I will have the two side windows open about one and one half inches and heat turned off at sleepy time.. Storage under cot frame for anything. Storage under the cooking stand also. Everything comes out of the truck bed and fits in a small corner in the basement. Looking for foam pad for the cot, checking yard sales and furniture stores. Built on the cheap side, used odds and ends left over lumber from coffin making. Glue, screws and foam board has been the only expense. I have tent camped for about thirty years and this will be interesting and cramped!! When totally completed I'll post a photo.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
12,086 Posts
A neighbor just sold a slide in for a short bed. Crapper with shower slept 4. He could not gett 400 bucks for it. I almost bought it because it was so cheap. He gave it to a minister for a divorced guy that had no place to go.
A friend once outfitted an old van with bunks, single burner stove etc. He put a tiny charcoal stove in the thing for heat. Complete with a flue that went through the roof. That stove was a bit alarming.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,557 Posts
Make sure the stove isn't too high or your cap roof will suffer! When in Colorado we use just a lantern to heat up the tents before bed and in the mornings for afew minutes before getting out of the sleeping bags. They throw alot more heat than most realize and it will all go up!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
958 Posts
Years ago on the 1st morning of trout season I was there when they pulled 2 guys out of the back of a truck cap camper, lantern running. They were blue and stone dead. Be carefull.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
221 Posts
Discussion Starter #6
"YES, I will have the two side windows open about one and one half inches and heat turned off at sleepy time."
Thank you for the reminder!! I have a minus zero rated hollow filled sleeping bag and extra blankets. My light is battery powered. The real draw back is getting up a couple times through the night for ---that call of nature. My little camp stove is eighteen inches high from the floor, plenty of "to the roof" space. My main concern was to insulate between me and the truck bed. I have been looking and reading all I could find on the web. Couple changes here and there to suit my likes.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,773 Posts
Built a similar set-up for my 8' bed truck back in the eighties, and lived in it for 6 months while doing Forest Service contract work in NM and CO. Used 3/4" plywood, built boxes with flip tops along each side - from floor to just over the wheel wells. Built a large storage chest across the bed in front of the wheel wells at the same height, and then a slide in piece that covered the area between the three boxes to give a bed sized surface at one height. Cooler and everyday gear went under the bunk, clothes, etc less used got stored in the boxes. Enuf height to sit upright in the bunk to read a book - lantern will heat it all - definitely keep adequate ventilation!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
221 Posts
Discussion Starter #8
Wish I could have seen that setup, sounds perfect for a capper. Going out this morning to get a tarp to cover the capper and have a "porch". Will make six foot stakes to hold the tarp out and up from the capper sides. (My time is limited this week, need to finish a coffin.)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,678 Posts
2 things I see will be an issue. Biggest is the exposed foam
and the stove/heater near it. That foam will melt and torch real easy. I mixed epoxy to put on my turkey fan that was pinned to the foam board and just the chemical heat melted a hole in the 1 1/2 foam. Add flame near it and your in trouble. I would make a 3 sided shield of thin plywood covered in sheet metal to surround the stove/heater
The other is condensation on the underside surfaces of the shell. I have winter camped with my sliders open and a propane or white gas heater going and it was literally dripping inside. Not quite sure how to handle that one other than wiping down with towels.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
221 Posts
Discussion Starter #13
I understand what you are saying. The heater/stove stand is not anchored down, what will get moved toward the wheel well when in use. That will clear the wall by ten inches. The heat shield is a good idea, I will do that, thanks for that tip. I will not be using heat at lights out time. Will be buried down in a mummy bag and maybe can find a chubby old bear to cuddle up with!!
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
4,565 Posts
The insulation isn't going to help you at the bed sides.You have a cap that isn't insulated and windows as well.Insulation does't keep cold out it keeps heat from transferring to the cold.If you insulate the top of your cot it will help some for retaining your body heat.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
221 Posts
Discussion Starter #15
Well, I'm still working on it. Found a hospital mattress that is in perfect condition. Stripped it to the foam and cut it to fit. Made a pillowcase and a cover for the mattress. Glued velcro around the windows. Next to get some Reflectix (?) from Lowe's. Will sew on the receiving velcro strips so I can close up the windows while sleeping. I plan on leaving the window open a little at the front end. But still have the insulation covering the large section on that window. "I will still have no heat going while sleeping!!" If I survived in a tent in near zero weather, I'm sure this will be like sleeping at the -- where they leave the light on for you!! I'll finish this next week and post a photo. Thanks to all for your tips and concerns.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
221 Posts
Discussion Starter #16
Fitted the windows with Reflectix and the back cap window, I left enough material to go down over the tailgate. The front sliding windows will be left uncovered. I think I'm finished working on this. Just pack some food, water and hunting gear.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,132 Posts
If you could install one of the Cargo trailer crank open roof vents , it should take care of condensation problems . I had no issues with my vent opened about 1 inch on a 30 degree night last October . Heated with a Buddy Heater.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
24,796 Posts
The sue of that rain fly is invaluable and make any set-up comfortable. Just having a dry space getting in or out makes a huge difference. A quick easy way to improve any camp.

I would never cook inside the camper. Nor would I opt for any inside heat other than a propane lantern or heater used only when awake and as needed.

Been sleeping in the truck for years. I go simple and quick. Usually little more than the tounno cover on the truck, 2" of foam I unroll for padding, and a flashlight. I do setup a rain fly if I am doing more than one night or if bad weather is coming.

Been out in sub zero temps with 30 -40 MPH winds. As always - the last 2 minutes of the day and the first three minutes of the morning are the worst. Business as usual after that. Plan ahead, have your clothes ready for morning and do the do.

I have a truck tent. Haven't used it in two years. The back of the truck is faster and as comfortable. Better - faster to move out every morning.

I cook on a one or two burner propane stove. I have a single propane lantern. If I want to heat the inside of the truck bed - I take and light a unscented wide based candle.

I will also place a stick or something to create a small gap in the cover for ventilation.

in all that, and with the great sleeping bag I use, the addition of a single blanket to cover the shoulder area makes this work perfect. Sleeping bags restrict movement, the blanket allows the bag to be zipped only to upper chest area freeing shoulders. The blanket covers and warms, but allows you to move.

Keep it simple & stupid. All my stuff basically fits in a medium plastic tote - less the foam and sleeping bag. That includes the extra propane and pots and pans/ and similar things. Not tons of room in a Colorado.

I did buy one of those tent cots this summer. going to try that with the rain fly during archery season. Should work great. But as my luck goes, I have more total nights in the rain or snow than all nights put together. Just accept it and drive on.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
358 Posts
Something to keep in mind is the burning of propane creates moisture which would add to the condensation from breathing
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
221 Posts
Discussion Starter #20
Bluetick, thanks for you take on this style of camping. For 30 plus years I have set up a tent, as I'm a little older (68) I have become lazy. I will give this rig a test for geezer doe season. For Saturday squirrel opener I plan on having my lunch, deer meat stew and a pot of coffee, and take a nap on the thick foam mattress. I also have one of those large candles and yes I will have the window open a crack for air. I have been reading the fiberglass tops aren't a problem with condensation as the metal tops. Do you know if that is true or not? The top of my cap is thicker (4") then the sides.
 
1 - 20 of 21 Posts
Top