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2013 Top Mod Contest Part 3

Push all that other stuff off your desk and make room for sixteen more mod-rageous camper mods.  Can’t hear me now?  Get a boost from Wells and Wilson.

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Welcome to the third installment of a four part 2013 Top Mod Showdown contest series.  The first three parts include runner-up $25 Lowes Gift Card prizes.  Later this week, in the fourth and final installment, we will announce the winner of the $100 Fuel Card Grand Prize and crown the Top Truck Camper Modder of 2013.


Runner-Up Winner #3: John Wells, Pennsylvania

2011 Chevy 3500HD
2012 Chalet Ascent S100F

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“We dry camp often in areas where cell signals are marginal.  “Can you hear me now?”  The presence or absence of a signal can simply be the difference between being inside the camper versus being outside.

To optimize the cell signal inside the camper, I purchased and installed a Wilson Electronics cell phone booster kit.  As the included indoor antenna was only made for a range of three to five feet from the indoor antenna, I upgraded the kit with a Wilson 50 ohm wall mounted antenna to bathe the entire interior of the camper with signal.

The outdoor antenna (communicates with cell tower) is mounted on the roof with adhesive on a plastic disc added by me (no magnetic materials there).  Antenna wire in adhesive holders is routed to the nearby rear window.

The indoor antenna (communicates with the cell phone) must be located a minimum distance of several feet from the outdoor antenna or interference will result.  There are indicator lights on the main module to indicate and troubleshoot this situation before antennas are permanently fixed.

The main unit is wall mounted just inside the rear window of the camper.  Power is supplied through a standard 12V DC socket.  I added surface mounted wire molding to clean up the install.

It works like a charm!  I can hear me now!

Note: The cell signal booster only brings indoor signal up to best local outdoor levels.  It can’t provide a signal where there is none.  Wilson also makes WiFi boosters to increase signal strength (not speed).” – John Wells

2013 Top Mod Contest Entries Part 3

Eldon Rhodes, Texas
2008 Chevy Silverado 3500
2011 Lance 1050

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“Everyone wants a sofa in their truck camper, right?  Well, I couldn’t quite get a sofa in my Lance 1050, but I got close.  This sixty second dinette to sofa conversion allows us to watch television in a greater deal of comfort than just sitting at the dinette.

There are a total of three pieces of half inch plywood, two of which are hinged together.  The two armchair pillows do double duty when laying in bed reading.

The photos show the progression of converting from a dinette to the sofa.  The plywood panels store under the dinette seat cushions and weigh next to nothing.  The conversion can stop at photo number six or can be completed through photo number eight to allow both occupants to have their feet up.  We have found this arrangement to be very comfortable.” – Eldon Rhodes

Ray and Martha Jordan, Texas
2004 Chevy Silverado 2500
2012 Lance 825

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“We bought our first truck camper last year with a goal of dry camping at Padre Island National Seashore south of Corpus Christi, Texas.  We like to drive way down the beach about twenty to thirty-five miles to explore the best fishing areas.

This is a four wheel drive area.  We were not positive that we could successfully reach the more remote areas without getting stuck in the soft sand.  So we bought a light weight camper which translates to limited storage.

I had a carrier made out of aluminum at a local welding shop at a reasonable cost.  It measures eighty inches long and thirty inches wide and only weighs about fifty-five pounds.  We wanted it to serve as both a carrier and a back porch to make it easier to get into the camper.

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