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Essential Truck Camping Advice

The Payload Match Challenge: Part 2


The first CAT Scale weight we needed was with the truck empty, with full fuel, installed tie-down systems, rubber truck bed mat, and required truck wiring.

Essentially, this CAT Scale weight reflects what the truck weighs including items that are permanently installed for a truck camper.  The rubber truck bed mat is technically not permanently installed, but we believe it’s appropriate to include the rubber bed mat weight with the truck empty weight.

Here are the weights of the installed items:

Happijac tie-down system (minus turnbuckles): 29 pounds
Torklift tie-down system (minus extensions and turnbuckles): 55.5 pounds
Rubber truck bed mat: 49 pounds
Umbilical cord and wiring for truck: 4 pounds


Before going to our local CAT Scale, we removed the tailgate and stored it carefully in our garage.  Since we were not going to tow with our truck camper rig, we also removed the GM factory truck hitch, adapter, and bolts.  Angela also decided we didn’t need rear floor mats and removed those as well.

Here are the weights of the removed items:

Tailgate: 48.5 pounds
GM Factory Hitch, Adapter, and Bolts: 56.5 pounds
Rear Floor Mats: 3 pounds

The total installed item weight is 137.5 pounds.  The total removed item weight is 108 pounds.  The net gain in truck weight is 29.5 pounds.

With the above items installed and removed, we weighed the truck empty, with full fuel.  This CAT Scale weigh actually happened last due to our tie-down installation and camper delivery timeline.  The resulting empty truck CAT Scale ticket read:


Above: This CAT Scale ticket of the truck empty was taken after the removal of the tailgate, factory hitch, and rear floormats.

We subtracted the CAT Scale gross weight of the truck (6,720 pounds) from the GVWR stated on the truck (10,800 pounds) to calculate our payload; 4,080 pounds.  That’s an additional of 67 pounds of payload compared to the payload sticker on the truck.  How the truck increased 29.5 pounds in weight and gained 67 pounds of payload is something we will be asking GM.

CAT Scale #2: Truck Empty and Camper Wet with Options


For the next CAT Scale weigh, we weighed the truck and camper with full fresh water, full hot water heater, full propane tanks, two batteries, and full truck fuel tank.  This CAT Scale ticket would give us the camper wet with options weight once we subtracted the truck empty CAT Scale gross weight.

The resulting truck empty and camper wet with options CAT Scale ticket read:


This CAT Scale weigh happened immediately after leaving Parkview RV.  Unfortunately, we forgot to remove the factory hitch from behind the front seats where we had put it after removal.  This added the hitch weight, 56.5 pounds, to the above gross weight.  Subtracting the 56.5 pound hitch weight brings the truck empty and camper wet with options weight to 10,123.5 pounds.

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