Reader Surveys

Hard Side Comments: 2016 Ultimate Camper Survey

Here are the 2016 Ultimate Camper Survey responses to, “Is there anything that you would like to add to your next hard side truck camper purchase that was not asked about in the above survey?”

A king size bed

All-in-one wireless remote control for jacks, slide-out, and awnings.  The ability to create a WIFI hotspot when in remote locations.

Wireless outside thermometer, Bluetooth stereo system, adjustable or removable shelving systems in cabinets, a refrigerator that alarms if the door is not latched or failing, specifications of the camper construction so if you want to mount something to the wall you know where it will be secure.

Secured storage for firearms.  Build for cold weather use.  Make it as light weight as possible.

Heki windows, big ones everywhere.  Fans in the ceiling.  While you are at it, make it a round observation bubble that goes into a turret so that I can always get the breeze and see what’s going on.

LED interior lights

Eliminate the need to reseal penetrations, or have less penetrations.  Higher quality solar power controllers.  Have the option for brush guards to protect the camper from trees along four-wheel drive routes.  More secure locks.  Include a safe to secure high value items.  Reduce the amount of wood in the frame to prevent rot.  Stronger frame to withhold rugged, off-road travels.

A quiet generator.

A different type of blind system.  I have a one piece slide up and down for dark that includes the screen.  That takes both hands to release two latches that releases the screen so that you can the open window.  Those are a pain!  It’s a very poor system.

Bigger grey and smaller black tanks for us boondockers.  I have never filled a black tank, but always have to worry about the grey tank.

A refrigerator that will work even when the camper is not level.

Less joints, or less caulk-able joints.  We always have problems with water intrusion and having to re-caulk.

Basement under the bed in the cabover.  The 2002 Fleetwood had this.  Light weight, and rot-proof campers.

Built-in attachment points for racks, and ski-bike-storage boxes.  I’m having a hard time with ski racks on my 2013 Arctic Fox 1140.

Why do designers think all people have eyes in the back of their head to watch television?  Or that we are comfortable in a dinette or small toilet space?  We spend months in our box while traveling all over the Lower 48 and Alaska.  Please have them spend some time using the space they design.  I use mine for towing a boat to a remote ramp, camp on the side of a road in Alaska, or spend a month in Branson, Missouri while going to the shows.  Campers should serve all purposes and be comfortable for all.  The recliner or sofa is the best change in the 55 years I have been RVing.

I would love a fold-down or pull-out mini deck of some kind.

Possible diesel appliances such as heater (air or hydronic) with hot water heater and cook top.  Eliminate propane.

More choices for exterior color.

Small awnings, aerodynamic design, over-the-bedroom windows to allow windows to stay open in light rain and not have screens get wet or have the rain blow in.

I prefer clear windows in the entry door rather than the frosted windows the industry seems to prefer.

Roof material that lasts, not the junk that’s out there now.

A bumper that allows a platform of some sort, but also does not impede hooking up a trailer too much.

Have all the plumbing for fixtures on one side of the camper and have a way you could access all the plumbing by removing outside panels or an easily removable exterior wall cover.

AM/FM stereo with Bluetooth and auxiliary input.  No CD or DVD.  External tank monitor system.  A built-in scale to measure propane tank weights.  No lights on fire alarm or gas monitors.  A low profile air conditioner unit.

Run all the 110 via DC/AC convertor, a generator for running the air conditioner or a battery recharge, perhaps an outside 110 outlet.

Better sensors/monitors for tanks, movable dividers in cabinets over the dinette area.

Improved doors and improved door hardware.  Improved hardware on exterior access doors.

Three or four 20-pound propane tanks.

Stairs attached to the camper

Hanging closets for clothes.  Long underneath storage tray for snow skis.

Slip covered upholstery with ability to buy several sets.  Prefer dinettes that are in front of the overcab bed in the floor plan.

Water accumulator

All around exterior lighting for safety.  Exterior 110 volt and 12 volt outlets.  A hose hook up from camper.

A composite toilet system and tilt-out tents on the rear and sides.

Tinted windows

I-N-S-U-L-A-T-I-O-N!  Is spray foam practical on the Bigfoot or Northern Lite production line?  I want my roof as molded fiberglass construction as well.  A leash trained cat who likes to travel.  Mine is defective in both aspects.

Insulated floor and walls for the cold Saskatchewan winters.

Above dinette storage, larger oven-drawer under stove, side by side propane tanks or pull-out tray if front to back, and a smoked glass on entry door with retractable window shade.

Must have provisions for and/or the option of a Stable Lift system.  I would not own another truck camper without one.

Full body paint

Pass through to truck cab

I would very much like to see a full wall, single-slide camper, mid wet bath, either side or rear-entry, that allows use of all (or almost all) camper features without deploying slide. And stop putting refrigerators in slide-outs – poor convection.

A self-centering loading system so one person can quickly load or unload the camper.

Better and more comfortable seating in the dinette.

More storage and cupboards

I would like an aluminum painted roof.

A tankless hot water heater
I like the idea of a front dinette east-west cabover along the lines of an Alaskan 8′ floor plan in a hard side built of light weight materials.

Good quality cabinet latches that don’t all break!  Clear window in the door.  Holding tank valves easily accessible for repairs.

Area for four to six deep cycle batteries and a built-in quality batt isolator.  A bigger 120 volt battery charger, 80 to 100 amps with on/off switch.

Larger steps

All the storage that is possible

The dinette must be able to fold down to a standard double bed

A ladder that does not interfere with the rear mount awning.  Maybe a fold-up side ladder.

I would like to see an option to upgrade the charger/converter.

Sometimes I want a sofa, sometimes I want a recliner.  I full time in my RV, so comfort is a huge plus.  What I really want to see is a real dual reclining love seat that does not have a reclining lever in the middle of the love seat!

A real good trailer system rated at 10,000 pounds.

Lots of outside storage

I just want it light enough that it can ride on a half ton pickup.  Would sacrifice many of the things checked above to save weight/make it simple and low maintenance.

Lots of storage compartments

A side awning, rain sensor vents, insulated day/night shades, low profile air conditioner, and storage options in the bumper.

50 amp service, electric two-burner stove, microwave/convection oven, no windows in the cabover, and more storage in the cabover.  No pass through window, better insulation, and 102-inches in width.

Dimmable lights, clear (not frosted) glass in the top and bottom of the door.  A ladder that’s placed so it’s not in front of the window on the side of the slide.  Larger windows. More shelves in the cabinets.

Jack television antenna

A step to bed area

A light on the interior by the back door, drawers under the dining table. We added our own.  A mirror on the back of closet door.  We installed our own.  Night stands near the head of the bed.  We installed our own.  Pull out makeup mirror inside of closet.  We installed our own.  Storage containers on both sides of the bed.  We found some that fit perfectly, three on each side.  It would have been nice had they been there already. They accommodate socks, underwear, T-shirts, shorts, and jeans, so a lot of storage in an otherwise wasted space, or at least a less organized space.  We also constructed a 3-inch deep wall cabinet that hangs to the right of our dining space.  It has been a big help when storing a variety of everyday items, kitchen to bath, and making them readily accessible.  The door insert is a bulletin board.  Yes, we use it a lot.  A small fixture by the sink to accommodate a bottle of liquid hand soap.  Again we were able to fashion one out of wood that works and looks nice.  These are some things that we did to make our camper more livable and convenient.  It`s the little things that make a big difference when one is on the road.  We have a 2014 Lance 825 and love it!

A more accurate system to check tank levels.  A way to check tank levels from outside while filling the fresh tank.  A way to turn on a kitchen light right at the door entry instead of needing to go in and tripping to get up to the light.

External AC electrical connectors.  External electrical connectors for external ground placed solar panels.

Keep it simple and sturdy

Could you do all that and make it really cheap too?  That would be a happy day!

I want everything, but it to weigh only 2,000 pounds.  LOL.

A skylight in the kitchen area.  I would like a roof escape and a Fantastic Fan.  Also, two 20-pound LP tanks because they are easier to exchange then the 30 pounders.

A 6-cubic foot refrigerator that has two doors.  Abundant external storage.

Quality craftsmanship.  The RV industry has had poor quality control for a very long time!

Awning windows preferred.  Do away with the 751 common key.  LED interior lights, with adjustable brightness in the reading lights.  The composting toilet would eliminate the need for a large/heavy black tank.

More 1500 truck series campers that are around 1,000 pounds.  This is where the market needs to go; half-ton trucks.

Satellite radio option

Twin beds in the cabover.  Make it easier to put on sheets and easier to get in and out of bed.  The older you get, the harder it is to make up the bed.

Super streamlined and not hang over the sides very far.  Make it 78″ wide for a full-size truck.

Lightweight is #1.

A way to get to the truck cab via the window in the camper.  Put in a large up and down window in the truck and camper.


More storage

Regarding the heating/air conditioning, the air conditioner should have 120-volt strip heaters so that if we have hook-ups, we can heat from that.  A heat pump would be great, too.  Either option could be used on the generator, either for quick heat to take the chill off once parked, or auxiliary heat in the event of a primary heating system failure.  I’m very interested in a hydronic heating options found in larger RVs such as the ones from Espar.  They seem like a heating technology that, if properly implemented, should result in lower overall electricity use when boondocking.

Having two systems may seem like overkill, but when I’m camping I treat it similar to sailing or flying.  More than one system keeps things safe, comfortable, and let’s you stay on the road, at sea, or in the air when a primary system fails.  Regarding solar power systems, I’m inclined to over spec the number of panels over what most manufactures supply or recommend.  It seems that many specify a panel or panels that would satisfactorily recharge the batteries assuming full sun all day long.  We camp in areas of heavy tree cover and frequent clouds.  The more panels you have, the better. I’d also like a rear facing camera with a monitor both in the cab of the truck as well as in inside the camper.  It’s great for backing the rig and for seeing who/what’s at the back porch.  As long as we are dreaming, a front facing camera would be for that same reason.  You can see what’s going on in front of the camper from inside the cabover. That’s a tough blind spot.

I’d like to see the Lance 975 floor plan on a three-quarter ton long bed, and still have a dinette slide out, and a patio side awning.  Covert the forty gallon tanks to thirty gallons with a 6-cubic foot refrigerator, to reduce the weight.

I’d like the camper and truck manufacturers to come together and put out matching sets.

Put in a possible fourth slide for extra space in the cabover, and heated floors throughout the truck camper.

Better floor plans on triple-slides.  Access to triple-slide interior, especially the bathroom, while the slides are in!

The addition of a storage pod on the roof, near the ladder.  Make the pod easy to load without having to get on the roof.

All I want is for Northern Lite to build me a fiberglass camper the same size and floor plan as the Northstar Liberty camper for my half-ton GMC.

Metal roof.  No rubber or plastic roof.  Foam insulation.  Metal roof, metal exterior, closed cell foam insulation for reduction of moisture damage.  These campers live a hard life, unless stored in a building.

The new Chevy Silverado crew cab, 4×4, 8-foot bed, diesel trucks don’t have much payload.  Ours has 1,398 pounds.  Why not make lighter truck campers designed with toilet and showers?

Sleeping accommodations.  Family friendly models with bunks.  Why do all truck campers seem to be designed for retirees?

Outside BBQ tray with propane connection and 110 plug in.

No more dark colors for exterior.  They are too hard to cool.  Higher BTU air conditioners as standard.  Get rid of low capacity.

No decals on the nose cap.  Removing bugs with a pressure washer is very difficult when one has to be careful not to ruin the decals.

A larger bathroom than standard

A portable deck which would extend out from the entry door, enough to sit three and a small BBQ.

Reinforced floor for user added handicapped lift system next to convertible dinette, like Port-A-Lift.

Rear view camera and TV antenna

Lower roof line and make easier access to the cabover with maybe a ladder.  A better setup for short people.  My wife is 4’11” tall.  She needs to a use step ladder to access the top cupboards and microwave.  I’m 6′, but I’m getting older so lower cupboards would help.  I have Lance 915.  If the stove were moved to the sink location, then the cabinets could be lowered and a long storage area would be left above it.  Drop the  cabinets by 12-inches with a side rail and net for dry goods storage.

A back porch or deck

The  Eagle Cap 1160 is a great start.  They need to make it a two feet longer.  Take the pantry out of the bath and put it in the kitchen, where it belongs, and put a linen cabinet in the bath like you find in the Arctic Fox 1150 dry bath.  Also, I want a love seat sofa zero wall recliner, instead of the theater seating.  I’d rather have a sofa/recliner then one or the other.  I hate the color of the Eagle Cap front cap and they need help with their external graphics and interior decor.  Refer to the gorgeous and elegant look of the Chalet TS116 dark Paisley with brown leather.

Sacrifice some dinette/sofa space for a larger dry bath and an open feeling overhead bed, in a half-ton capable, short 6-1/2 foot pick up.

Rear bike rack for models with side door entry, storage unit on the roof, battery compartment should be large enough to accommodate two 6-volt golf cart batteries.

I think the 1998 Lance 945 Legend had the perfect floor plan.

I think the advantage of side entry is that it opens up the rear for storage for bikes, barbecue, etc., that the rear door eliminates.  Side entry also complicates the floor plan and has its own disadvantages.  It might be too long and heavy.

A whole-house 2000-watt inverter with solar controller, batteries, solar panels, wiring to support, or at least provisions/access to support.  Put a bit more thought into the installation of solar panels, like the structure in the roof to support the addition of panels.  A flat bed truck camper is a great idea.  It would be nice if the manufacturers could establish a standard for this.  My dream is a truck camper that sits on a standard 10′ bed.  Then we only have to convince the truck manufacturers to offer a chassis cab with an extended cab that will support a 10′ bed.

Diesel heating and cooking

Lower price

Storage.  A ladder and rack for a kayak standing vertical.

The entire roof of the camper should be made of carbon fiber, reducing the weight significantly.  All manufactures should provide low profile air conditioner units such as the one you installed.  A minimum 13,500 BTU would be good for an industry standard. Would someone please come up with a headboard system that attaches to the front cap and can be pulled out and locked in place?  Make two individual units that operate separately with two inches of foam padding and a nice covering.  It’s impossible to sit and read or watch television against a sloping front cap.  With a two battery system a 2000 watt inverter should be able to handle convection/microwave power along with electric coffee maker usage.  The inverter would fit nicely under the stove where the oven is deleted.

More height in the cabover.  A larger hatch in the cabover like we use to have so a person with limited mobility can use it.  This is necessary for safety and to do maintenance on the roof.

Step to get up to the bed and maybe an LED light by the step

A longer lasting exterior seam seal with less seams.  Stainless steel hardware would set any manufacturer ahead of the best.

Electric fireplace heaters, dinette seating more comfortable, plain fabric designs, no more funky paisleys and weird designs, please!  The 60s are over.  We need more classy fabric designs, especially in the triple slides.

Underfloor and basement heating (like the Cirrus).  A ceramic toilet.

All these things, but not if you have to charge a fortune for them.  $50,000 to $60,000 for a truck camper is really ridiculous for the average person.  I would replace my 2005 Arctic Fox but refuse to pay those prices.  The industry has to be reasonable to keep going.

A fair price.  Things seem to be getting out of hand.

Outside battery compartment

Lighted stair wells.  Lever controlled faucets.  Kitchen storage is important.

Three LED flood/porch lamps; one by the rear by door, and one on each side that are  mounted high.  Two-way switchable, inside.  One would be wired through the camper harness to be controlled from the auxiliary switch in the cab.  That would be for night camp set-up and backing in unimproved camp sites.

Rear wall bunk above sofa

Certified weights as built on bill of sale on the title.  Not just a ball park weight.

As far as television placements, I prefer one in the bedroom and one the kitchen living area.  I would like to see a taller oven and less storage underneath.

For rear access to the roof, I would prefer the small fold out aluminum steps.

Better systems monitors, quieter water pump, better refrigerator insulation while traveling.

I boondock and stealth camp.  Therefore, I’d also prefer a non-slide camper.  Right now, I think Bigfoot is the only manufacturer that builds a non-slide, mid-dry-bath camper, but it’s for long-bed trucks.  At least give us a slide-out camper that is usable without having to deploy the slide.  Also, not all of us want dual wheels.  Some of us use our trucks as daily drivers.  If someone would build a short-bed, single slide camper that’s usable with the slide closed, I’d buy it tomorrow.  Thanks to the Whites for asking!

I’m old fashion.  I would like to see the return of the 1973 Wolverine floor plan which was used again by Lance in their 2005 1121 model (which I now own).  We live in Labrador.  Due to work commitments we travel from mid-August to mid-October and this requires clothing for at least two seasons.  A large rear wardrobe is ideal.

I installed a composting toilet.  Look Mom, no black tank to empty!

Automatic entry steps

More exterior and interior storage.  LED lights on each side of the camper’s exterior. Built in backup camera on the camper.

Radiant propane or hot water heat.  All systems optimized for boondocking and solar power.  Pre-wired for up to four 200-watt solar panels with the roof space designed with room for installation of the panels.

A ladder to the cabover

Some kind of guide system for line up on truck box when loading camper.

A clothes line inside and outside.  More towel bars.  Use the grey water to flush toilet. Some kind of simple alignment system for loading the camper on truck like guide plates that are non electronic.  Swinging steps for rear door when hooked to the trailer.  An external battery power switch.

Note on the window question; you failed to include push-out, insulated windows, which are not sliding or crank out.

Ladder for easier access to cabover

Ability to enter camper when slide-outs are in

Add more space to the wet bath by not having a sink.  Also a two-burner stove instead of a three burner installed side-to-side would give you more counter space.  In the eight years we owned our fifth wheel, we never used the third burner.

Smaller opening storage doors to access areas between the camper box and pick-up bed.

Large windows everywhere

Instantaneous water heater

Skip the dinette in single slides.  They are uncomfortable.  Give me a couple of recliners and TV trays.  I prefer a place I can relax.  Dinettes are out.

More head room in sleeping area, built-in steps for overhead berth, and a sliding ramp for pet access.  Outside electrical sockets with 110 on all sides of the units.  Swinging hand rail for support when accessing the unit.  Positive drawer and cabinet latches requiring manual unlocking to open.  Realistic use of space, not just for appearance.  Storage room under dinette for canned food.  Swing dinette table that’s removable.  Space to store table in a closet or to store table outside.  A camera for security and a simple alarm system that can be activated by a switch when the dead bolt or switch is on.

A shelf in the dinette over the window with enough room for a rifle or fishing rod.

Just a basic camper under 1,000 pounds so a half-ton can easily handle it.  I want something similar to a Capri Cowboy camper, but lighter.  Most half-ton trucks have 1,300 pounds of cargo capacity.

A roof pod

A dimmer for the bathroom light.  A quiet fan for a stove fan, and better light above the stove.  Better mattress tops, more solar panels, and a quieter generator.

Aerodynamics for better fuel consumption.

Keep the prices down.  Truck campers have to be the most expensive per square foot RV of any of them.

Screened, openable window on front lower wall (lined up with truck rear window).  This is always protected from rain for venting.  I have this now, but I had to make the screen.

Less fancy valances and trim decorating that adds weight, takes space, and collects dust and dirt.  More utilitarian interior finishes.

Cup holders

A front cap that’s aerodynamic to reduce wind resistance and noise.

Outside BBQ

I prefer no bumper

A true four season camper

Nothing was asked about quality in the survey, so I would like to comment.  How about a camper without loose screws or missing screws and cabinet latches that work smoothly like Northstar latches?  I would like dealers and manufacturers who properly prep campers.  Remove cabinet sawdust and ensure all components work.  I would like caulking that holds up over time and does not yellow.  Better yet, the elimination of the use of exposed chalking like Cirrus.  I would like the use of engineered wood, and treated lumber to eliminate rot from leaks caused by poor workmanship.

External generator platform and plug

LED lighting and an outside 12 volt outlet

Rear storage bumper 36-inches deep with storage

An outside television

A walk-on roof system and an optional roof top storage box

Easy entering and exiting steps for older people.  Easy access to sewer and water drains. A larger shower and more counter space.  Easy access to winterize and flush water system.  Lower profile air conditioner unit.  Lighter stronger building material, easy opening awnings on the back and side, a larger slide-out, quieter water pumps, a larger hot water tank, and more cupboard space for food and clothing.

I would like jacks with removable wheels to help load and unload as well as wireless rear and side cameras.  A spare tire rack, two larger propane tanks, two or more larger batteries.  Also, keep the heavy weight lower like the batteries and propane.  I would like easy, removable propane tanks for refilling.  There should be less outside seams and joints to maintain to clean and caulk.

Ducted air and heat

Outside storage compartments

No wood or luan used anywhere.  No wood used for backer or framing.  Add quality control to production with a three year warranty.  Service centers should be across the USA.  Reclining couch that doesn’t make into a bed.  The manufacturers should have assembly line and final finishing quality control.  And good customer service.

The bedspreads or bedding needs to be improved.  Ours was so tight and hard to make that I just took it off and bought a lightweight comforter and shams.  Also there needs to be a little wiggle room around the end of mattress to make the bed easier.

Truck camper buyers are younger and we no longer want our grandparents decor nor do we want that old fashioned thinking towards truck campers.  Make campers cool again and listen to your younger customers and you’ll win them over everyday.

It would be nice to have camera and security system wired in.

A 16-foot flat floor with tag axle

All slide units must have a manual back-up system and rear windows that open.

Tons of outside storage space, tinted windows, split upper/lower entry door, window privacy blinds, and on-demand propane water heater, and no graphics.

Some sort of solar regeneration, it is free.

Water filter

Kitchen counter space.  No closets just shelves and drawers.

Provision for a mobile office

Lockable septic hose storage in back bumper

Inverter suitable to running the microwave and air conditioner for short periods of time

Well insulated

Satellite dish and storage

Windows that open all the way for sufficient ventilation

Exterior roof racking built into roof for canoes and kayaks.  Solar panels with adjusters built into the roof.  I want all mounts and wiring connectors factory installed.

It must have a queen size bed and headroom for up to 6’4″ person.  I want to be able to close screens and then open windows.  The refrigerator and freezer should total at least six cubic feet.  Note: I didn’t understand what some of the choices above were, like different table leg types.

Storage space

Please have manufacturer’s update to more modern colors/patterns, fabrics and graphics, both on the inside and outside.  My camper built in 2013 looks exactly like the ones they built in the 80s and 90s.

Maximize the storage space and have a storage step to help get over the cab.  I have added drawers, and doors and closets in every camper I have owned.

An island in the kitchen

An air conditioner with low overall height

A kitchen area with full drawers on roller bearing slides, a larger bathroom, quality thermostat and heating unit, and a quality monitor for battery, water, and holding tanks. I want a battery and propane tank compartment on the low end of camper with slide-out tray for access from the ground level.

Sleeping accommodations for four adults

Extra insulation and protected tanks for four-season operations with minimal power consumption required to prevent freezing.

I would like a black and grey tank monitoring system that actually works, or at least someway to see how full the tanks really are.

Backup camera

Built-in spot for a trash can

1. Back door window with fish-eye (for security viewing).  2. Venetian blinds, no Roman blinds (for security viewing).  3. On/off water pump switch in bathroom.  4. Soften edges where sliding across seating and climbing into overhead cab.  5. Window in between camper and truck cab.  6. Step-up into overcab bed for short legged people.  7. Grab handle of roof for ladder.  8. Low light switch for when entering camper at night.  9. Correct size battery compartment door for 6-volt batteries.  10. Hooks to keep various outside compartment doors open, especially for grey/black water access.  11. Go to IKEA for creative storage solutions; make deep drawers, not pretty drawers.

No dinette.  One can’t have everything in such a small space and the dinette is wasted space much of the time.  I’d rather have comfortable seating with moveable tray tables.

I would like to get HDTV in the whole camper and not have to choose either front or back HDTV.

If aluminum structure, all hollow aluminum frames can be filled with expanding foam for additional insulation.  Access to belly for additional storage.  Insulation must be improved in underbelly and all around openings and spaces for water heater, refrigerator, batteries, and propane tanks. The center of gravity must be in front of rear axle, towards the cab, not behind it.

Choice of a color scheme before pattern selection

I would love an updated battery system with solar; something to last a week using 12 and 120 volts.

An easier way of removing/replacing propane tanks, and propane tanks with gauges.

Heated water lines

Built-in hidden television antenna.  Satellite TV system on the roof.  Room for four 6-volt deep cycle batteries.

I would like a short bed, side entry truck camper with dry bath for a half-ton truck.

A small outside television and a microwave at eye level.  I want a large camper that can replace my fifth wheel, not just be an addition to it.  That requires a washer-dryer combination.

I have a Lance 1172.  It’s too big.  I want a non-slide.  Thanks and I love what you do for camping.

I have a mix of crank-out and slider windows and I like that.

Some way to make the camper more rigid when it is on the jacks going up or down. There is probably some way to ensure that all the jacks are working together rather than each at its own speed.  It is scary to me to watch the camper sway when loading or unloading.

Power lift to aid older or disabled campers to get into and out of the truck camper.

Lots of insulation and a solid roof that doesn’t leak!

Bubble levels added for leveling both directions, and a dual recliner and dinette.  I would like an interchangeable system that allows for changing between both if you have guests and need the standard dinette sleeping.

More aluminum everywhere where wood is currently used and no wood in the rear overhang.  I would also like a roof that will never leak.  Water entry is the enemy of all campers regardless of type.  Build a longer life camper and put electric switches out of the way from bumping.  Things have to change or we are going to Class B, Coachman Concord Model 240.  There is no fun in thousand dollar repairs that should have never happened due to poor workmanship from water damage.  Have colored noses for less bug identity.  White is terrible to keep nice.

I would be looking for a camper with a 78-inch minimum floor to ceiling height.

TV antenna

Boat rack Maggie rack

Factory installed solar panels

Add a drain for the water tank so that you don’t have to use the pump

Slide out pantry

The correct add on kit for a half-ton short bed to properly carry the load.  A F-150 super crew short bed with kit XYZ.  It would be installed and balanced.  Charge a fee for this service if necessary.  I would like a single location control center for slides, power and lift units.  Allow a 65+ year old RVer to once again go exploring with his wife.

A husband room

Easy access to the bed

Propane bottles in a different lower position on a pull out tray and easier hold down device to undo tanks.  An oven that has a pilot light in front or middle for easier lighting.

Ceiling height including the vent and air conditioner needs to be 6’6″ minimum, even in the bath.

I would like mine to be rear bathroom and rear dinette.

Stop the tacky decorating.  We paid $45,000 for something that appears to have come from the 1980s.  Give us an Eddie Bauer or Pendleton model.

I wonder about the new in-floor heating

I would like a bunk above the dinette, and a heat pump in addition to the furnace for when it’s a little chilly out and you’re on shore power.  The bathroom needs to be accessible when the slide is in.

A Blu-ray player entertainment system.

The first question of the survey made me laugh.  Of course I want it to be as light as possible, but with everything in it, I know it won’t be.  Also, instead of a dinette, why not a breakfast bar with padded bar stools that fold?  For a stove, I’d prefer the larger size oven found in larger fifth wheels.

A drop down rear platform

Allow for a television in both the bedroom and the living area

With no sink in the bathroom, make the bathroom narrower and widen the pantry slide out.  Add cat/dog door to entry door.  In overcab bed area, add hinged headboard to the storage racks often found above the bed.  Then this can be set for optimal sitting up in bed.  Have built in telescoping stairs to the bed area that store under the bed frame. It can be pulled out and down when you’re ready for the night.  Then it would be telescoped closed and pushed back into the frame during the day.

More storage.  I find a lot of unused small areas not utilized for cubby holes or shelves.

Nice LED lighting inside.  Well designed to minimize possible leakage (one piece shell, front, rear, etc.).  A jack system that doesn’t suck.  A grey water dump that dumps quick. Quality!  A place to store a Honda EU2000i would be sweet!

I would prefer the inside walls to be more like a boat than panelling.  I would also prefer to have diesel appliances than propane (single fuel source).  I would also prefer a skylight in the cabover than widows (this could also be an emergency exit).

Price under $20,000

Higher grade stereo system, HD television, Blu-ray, HD satellite receiver, non-furnace type heat, tankless water heater, better solar options, and all matched to a single rear wheel, one ton truck.

Interior LED lighting.  I would really like the camper to be able and safe to put on a half ton truck.

Electric awnings, built-in camera with a rear view and forward roof top view, appliances with wasp proof vent screens, quiet range vent fans, and a sliding door on the bathroom.

Catalytic heater permanently installed.  High quality water filtration system.  Trimetric meter installed.  AGM batteries; two minimum, four is ideal.  500 watts of solar panels.

A gun safe

Battery compartments should be mounted on a tray that can slide out to allow easy access for battery maintenance or replacement.

Comfortable dinette seating since that is usually the only place to sit.  Most dinettes are not comfortable for any length of time.

Need to redesign the camper jack system to something more stable when extended.  Need easier helper system system to load and unload.  Something like a cab camera that has guides you when turning your truck to make sure you are in line with the camper and your wheel wells.  Additional double size bed instead of a dinette.  More lightweight composite material used than wood and metal.  How about a fold out bed for the cabover?  Use that space for storage and entertainment seating area.  This may sound crazy, but fold out the kitchen area when not in use.  It could fold against the wall giving you more space.

A full length mirror

Better appliances, and more marine grade electrics

A spouse that likes truck camping!

A simple slide-in camper for a 6 foot Ford single cab.  Very light and just for sleeping on the road.

Outside 110 volt outlet, outside lights on three sides, power awning, and twin beds facing north-south.

More storage, and less wasted space in and out.

The most important things are that it’s as light weight as possible, no bathroom, and has as much counter space and cabinet space as possible.  There are currently no quality campers out there with no bathroom.  I like an exterior shower!  Too much valuable space and weight is sacrificed for a bathroom and a black water tank.

A rear view camera that is operable while driving!  The slide should be on the left, driver’s side.

A better way to get up and down from the bunk.

The external bottom of truck campers need to more durable.  Truck campers take a good beating in the truck beds.  My Lance 1055 is a good example of this problem, and has screws that back out.

A reasonable price

Outside storage like the Lance 1181

Locked safe for valuables and hand gun

Small four bottle wine chiller

Auto seeking satellite antenna on the roof for direct/dish, duct air conditioner along with heat, and a special place for a 750 to 1.000 watt DC to 110 AC inverter.

No television or satellite hook-ups.  That’s what tablets and cell phones are for.


You guys are the best!  Most of the above answers define an Arctic Fox 865, which we purchased in 2014 and we love it!  An 11-foot version might be of interest, without a slide of course.  We are happy with the length that we have.  The slide-out could be an issue during winter camping.  I am not sure that there won’t be long term issues with slide-outs.  Lip seals are not zero leakage and the top, even with a cover, will collect snow and leaves.  The 11-foot length would probably give you the extra desired space.  I noticed that most slide-outs do not allow bathroom usage without the slide-out extended out; kind of an inconvenience.  Thanks for asking these questions!

A back landing similar to the Fox Landing that Arctic Fox uses.

At least two 300 ah, 6-volt AGM batteries.  At least a 2,000 watt pure sine inverter.  And, at least 200 watts of solar panels.

Built-in rear view camera

Question of the Week suggestion: Have you ever used the cab-over emergency exit for anything except a fresh air vent?  Do you really need it?

Cabin coat closet

Side entry, but still have a rear bumper with storage.  Larger storage side for black hose.  Shorter step system to add ground clearance.  Dual rear camera; one top, one bottom.  Third camera portable to assist in loading camper.  DVD entertainment system updated to latest technology.  Better lock system for all storage doors/drawers.  Front stability system when the camper is not on the truck.  Gained space from the bathroom should go towards storage outside of the bath area.  Very small medicine cabinet.  Small round vent at rear of camper to allow fresh air in when running a fan or heat.  Look what is used in Alaskan homes, but smaller.  No window at truck window.  Add a small step with storage.  Wardrobe area smaller, but on both sides and less or no mirror. Maximize outside storage (one larger storage versus two small storage areas).  Reduce step-to-door entry to allow greater ground clearance.

Double-hulled shell.  Would like to see Oliver travel trailers make a truck camper.

Off-truck camper stability system, additional kitchen area shelving, shower hose supports, toilet base that allows shower water to run under or is sealed in 360 degrees.

Radiant heated floors.  Roof air conditioner fueled by Efoy fuel cell.  Refrigerator to be used only by Efoy fuel cell power.

More closet space that is not over the bed.  Camper that comes standard with loading assist guides for truck and camper.

Separate switch and volume control for outside speakers.

Battery shut off system as well as the ability to charge from the truck, but not pull from truck batteries.  Large storage area as possible.

Design a camper with the bed in the main level of the camper and have storage in the overcab.  The bed could be in the form of a high quality sleeper sofa.  This would be a huge seller for the many folks who find it difficult to get into the overcab.  It would also make a great location for other sleepers if the overcab was still used for sleeping.  This design is so obvious in terms of need.  It is hard to believe that no one has done it!

Please lower the cassette tank access, at least on the Northstar!  It’s very hard to lift out even a half full cassette from that height, at least for an old gal!

Tank drains accessible from the left side, not requiring crawling under the camper to hook-up.  Satellite TV antenna.  Aluminum cap roof.

I would like to see both the slide-out dinette and the dry bath on the driver’s side with the dinette in the front and the dry bath in the back.  The shower should be in the back corner.  This would allow access to everything with the slide-out in and a fourteen to sixteen foot awning on the passenger’s side.

Smart / efficient DC-DC booster/charger, AC-DC charger, and DC-AC inverter system.

Work desk that folds out of the way

Rack on top for boat and a retractable wind up for shore power.  I don’t understand why they don’t use them.

Build in lighter and stronger drawers, and have more drawers.

I would like better quality control

I would like it to be reasonably priced with more durable components.

Roofing options

I need a little more storage and closet space since my truck camper will be used as a full-time living and camping home.

A roof without seams.  I’m tired of dealing with seam sealing at the edge. Why not a fiberglass roof molded that rolled over the side with a modest eave?  Also, a quick release protective cover above the escape hatch above the cabover bed.  It would allow keeping the escape hatch vent open during rain and snow.

I’m a fan of the larger hard-side truck campers.  I currently have a Lance 1181 and I’m looking to upgrade.  Slides are a wonderful addition to the truck camper world.

Outdoor storage for large items like a BBQ grill and portable generator.

The roof should be very clean with as little compromise of the moisture barrier as possible.  Too many manufacturers put accessories on the roof like ladders, rails, television antennas, etc.  That causes potential leaks and a lot of time and money to maintain. This should be kept to an absolute minimum.

For when I take the camper off the truck, I would like to have some type of attached fold-up camper stand base that can be let down and locked into place for the camper to sit on in addition to it standing on its jack stand legs.  Make this out of aluminum.

Good insulation

Four season insulation

Mounted screw points inside and out for amateur radio antennas or solid points inside to tie extra gear, gun points, or recreational gear.  Maybe some hard points on the roof for things like canoe hauling.

A manufacturing process like the old Ford American Road with a modern sheet molded process to keep it light and inexpensive.

A compressor type refrigerator

Plenty of ventilation.  All windows must be able to open to allow air to pass through.

I would like to see campers that don’t have so many seams to caulk all the time.  Spray Rhino lining on the roofs.  Make them so they last.  There are too many water problems now.  Cover the outside with aluminum diamond plate or fasten the fiberglass better.

Some my answers may conflict a bit.  It’s because I’m not sure which are lighter weight materials.  We like being able to use the storage in the fender wells and keeping the weight low to the ground.  We also like the storage provided when a fold down bunk is available above the dinette.  If a slide could be made that would give these things then we’d be interested.  But so far we’ve not seen one.  It’s the reason we still have our 1987 Lance LC 900.

More comfortable seating.  We use it for three months at a time and we’d like better seating like a sofa or chairs.

Flatbeds are very popular.  Some, mine included, have large cargo capacity.  Build a big flatbed camper.  I’ll buy it.

An overall exterior not over 14-feet long, LED interior lighting, overhead dome lighting, and vent doors in knee walls for storage.

A 110 volt, 15 amp plug in jack separate from the 30 amp screw on plug-in.  A high pressure propane outlet to run a camp stove outside.  A fold up panel at the head of the bed as back support.   An air conditioner that will run with a 2000 watt generator.  Better quality wiring with schematic in the owner’s manual with a regular color code like an OEM vehicle manufacturer.  A regular seven-pin RV style female connection on the front of the truck camper to hook-up the truck to the camper.

How about a slide out for just the bathroom?

More applications for satellite set up and more input from the television and television receiver vendors.  The set up for some systems is a challenge.

More simple graphics on the outside surfaces.  Less manufacturer logos on the unit. Make sure that cabinets are properly assembled with enough glue to withstand a lot of travel miles and lots of off-road boondocking.

When did you say that I would get this new camper?  LOL!  Thank you for doing a good job.  Keep it up.

No cabinetry in the cabover, but portable nylon storage cases to load clothes into the house or laundry mat.  Then position it on the wall securely in the camper.

Build it for the sportsman!  Have storage for 8-foot fishing rods.  Secure storage for shotguns, rifles, ammo, tackle, photography equipment, and wet chest waders.  Make everything easy to clean with water-proof or water-resistant materials.  Have heavy duty canvas fabrics that hold up to heavy use.  No rot flooring!  Build it for the guy who returns to his camper after a day on the lake/river or, when field hunting, in the cold/wet with dirty equipment in hand.  Make it for the true outdoorsman and not some sort of decor option.  True functionality.  Must also be able to tow a boat or decoy trailer.
An Alde heating system that uses radiant options and also can provide hot water for kitchenette and shower.  Under the overhang portion of the camper have a slide-out folding aluminum table with two legs.  Next to an outside grill connection have an awning and screened sides to create an outdoor area.  Have a fold up rear deck that can be lowered with or without an attached bumper pull trailer and have a cut out for the trailer tongue area.  It can be used as a deck and have attached stairs or can be used for extra storage if you aren’t towing anything.  I would want three roof rack bars going east-west with rubber pads and ratchet strap brackets to secure kayaks, canoes, boards, or solar panels.

Reduce weight, easy entry step up to the sleeping area, higher toilet, space for Group 31 AGM batteries, ability to easily access rear door when trailer is connected, more sleeping area storage, window in entry door, outside light above door for security, and a remote door lock.

Instant hot water heater, built-in stove top cover, removable table for external mount on side of camper, and outside grill mounts.

Yellow bug lights in all exterior fixtures and a television outside under the awning.

An all electric stove and oven.  I do not like propane.

Slide-out bunk bed

2000 watt inverter

Arctic insulation

Interior LED lighting

Under the bed storage

Wings that don’t rot.  Seams that don’t leak.

Center island to create work space on top and storage under.  The slide-outs should be designed for all to come in.  The island just takes up the available space left when the slides are closed.  Counter top type dish with fitting kit under sink area, or close to it.

Okay, this is really important.  Someone needs to install an electric raising wardrobe to replace those stupid hampers on each side of the bed.  You could use same technology that is used on flush mount television systems in the big fancy RVs.  That would sell some units, I bet.

Wardrobe light, interior LED lighting, Bluetooth stereo control inside and out, rear and side awning are musts.  Things I don’t need are overhead bunks (give me more cabinets) and dinette tables that wobble (make them sturdy or forget about it).

Removal of the pass through window.

Larger entry door for a motorcycle, transportation palette, and partly mobile furniture.

Lower screen door grate for protection.

Larger bathroom than most campers have.  Double seals on all four slide edges.  Wider entry doors.

12-volt outlet outside on dinette side.  Storage near the rear bumper at truck bed overhang with an area large enough for a propane grill.  Quality construction.

As much storage as possible

I would like a manufacturer to consider maintenance of batteries, plumbing, etc. when they design the unit.  I would like a dealer that assures their technicians actually test the equipment and do the work they check off on their checklist.

I don’t want a dining table.  Instead I want dual recliners.  We can always put a small folding table in front of it for eating.  Dinette seating is typically not very comfortable. Inside seating is mainly used for evening card games, reading, and television.

Balanced center of gravity and easy installation on truck

Outside propane quick connections for low and high pressure.  Outside cable and satellite connections.

A wider entry door

Roofing.  I want one solid top with no seams.  Aluminum bike rack, receiver style, on rear of camper.

Need slide-outs that do not impair the structural integrity of the camper in off-road conditions.

A place for an inverter, separate 110 volt outlets in the kitchen, dinette, television area for the inverter.

110 volt AC outlets on both sides of the bed, water heater with temperature control, energy management panel (voltage, charge rate, battery status, power source indication), tank level monitoring system that works, high quality slide-out weather seal, indoor/outdoor temperature indicator, fan-only furnace operation to equalize temperatures throughout the camper, XM antenna, and WIFI antenna.
Dual recliners are our biggest desire.  I can’t stress it enough.  Sitting at the dinette for extended periods is very uncomfortable.

72-inch couch that makes into a bed.

Golly Santa, every extra I checked is exactly what I already own in my new Arctic Fox 990 truck camper that I have been full-timing in for the last six months.  I would not change a thing.  I am totally satisfied.  The Lone Outdoorsman

Don’t put the bathroom directly across from the dining area.  Bathroom to the front to allow more window viewing area around the kitchen/dining area.

Battery disconnect switch and automatic dual propane switchover with monitor.

One-stop, one-contact warranty and mobile onsite repair

Outside rear storage pull-out tray, television in cabover and dinette/kitchen, and built-in water filter.

An inverter not wired to the refrigerator

All LED lighting inside and outside.  Better construction sealants.  More comfortable seating cushions, better insulation, and better ventilation for cold weather.

Wood kills campers.  I would be very interested in a non-wood camper.  I also would be interested in back-up cameras.  I also want auto roll up 30/50amp electric cords that are longer than the standard, so I don’t have to buy/carry extension cord for when I have my boat behind the camper at campground spots.  Dedicated storage for bag lawn chairs and separate awnings would really be nice.

More attention to rear steps.  I had to add a basement step and glow scissor steps because the factory arrangement was suicidal.

I would like a composting toilet.

Narrow design that drastically reduces frontal wind drag and overall weight, radiant heat and thus eliminate the furnace, quality insulation and structure versus lots of fufu stuff. Lower overall height to allow hard side off-road and maybe hard side pop-up design more advanced than 1950s Alaskan.

Two person recliner sofa in place of the dinette.

Large kitchen counter area, maximum use of nooks and crannies for storage, like above the refrigerator.
Please note that you can now order a combination USB port and 12 volt D/C outlet in one device.

Screen door pull handle, strong drawer latches so don’t slide open in travel.

Off-road ruggedized

I would like to see a slide-out with a sofa bed, and side door entry light enough to fit on a F350 single rear wheel with 11,500 GVW.

More hard side campers for half ton shortness!

Dimmable LED lighting.

I would like a large rear window in the back of the camper to sit in front of on rainy days.  I would also like a rear backup camera that can be Bluetooth attached to the OEM backup cameras in today’s modern trucks.

Four-season boon docking capable.  A simple, but well crafted, not cheaply built camper.

Truck Camper Chooser
To Top