Hallmark RV announces the world’s first commercially available 100% composite truck camper. No wood. No aluminum. Just lots of Coosa, Coosa, and more Coosa.
A decade from now we may all look back at Hallmark’s new Coosa truck camper as the dawn of a new era in truck camper design. We have had many companies incorporate composite materials such as Azdel into their campers, and one company has stripped wood completely out of their units in favor of aluminum, but never have we had a manufacturer build and offer a 100% composite Hallmark truck camper.
Composites potentially offer the best of the aluminum and wood worlds; the strength and water proof qualities of aluminum, and the insulating warmth and flexibility of wood. No more aluminum sweat. No more worries of wood rot.
In reality, nothing is that simple. While exciting new composite materials are available, most of them are prohibitively expensive. New composites also require a camper manufacturer to invest heavily in new construction techniques that disrupt their production lines, not to mention their bottom lines. After all, the truck camper industry is just that, an industry. As alluring as new composite materials may be, they must make business sense. Composite campers must sell and be profitable.
Enter Hallmark with their new Coosa option. While Coosa certainly fits the expensive and development intensive description above, Hallmark has found a way to bring this exciting new material into our industry and make a true 100% composite camper not only possible, but available. Is it perfect? Of course not, but it’s the kind of important breakthrough that we need to take truck camper design forward.
For anyone who has long wondered why the industry doesn’t build a truck camper with modern composites, mark your calendars. The future is now.
Above: A Hallmark Coosa floor before it had the linoleum installed
The following is an interview with Matt Ward of Hallmark RV on the new Hallmark RV Coosa option.
TCM: What is Coosa?
Matt: Coosa is a high density polyurethane foam reinforced with layers of stranded fiberglass to become a strong and structural building material. Coosa is designed to replace wood. You can screw and staple into Coosa just like wood, but you can’t use wood glues. Only urethane adhesives work with Coosa.
Above: Andy Ward working with the Coosa paneling at Hallmark RV
TCM: Why are you using Coosa to build Hallmark truck campers?
Matt: A few years ago we started looking at the new composite materials like Coosa and Azdel. Some of our customers have reservations about wood, so we started experimenting with these new composites. Coosa turned out to be an excellent wood or aluminum replacement for our truck campers.
Coosa is lighter than even a hollow aluminum tube, but, in all honesty, we didn’t save as much weight as we were hoping to save. We just completed a 100% Coosa Hallmark Milner. This camper has no wood or aluminum, period. When we weighed the 100% Coosa Milner, it was only about fifty pounds lighter than a standard Milner.
Left to Right: Refrigerator cabinet, wall on the kitchen side with the backing on top of Coosa, the layers of the wall
TCM: You’re making some additional news here. Are you stating that Hallmark will now offer aluminum frames along with wood and Coosa?
Matt: Yes. Our customers can now order a Hallmark truck camper with wood framing, aluminum framing, or Coosa framing.
TCM: What led Hallmark to offer aluminum framed campers?