Reader Surveys

OPEN FEEDBACK: 2012 Ultimate Truck Camper Survey

Over thirty pages of answers to the final survey question, “Is there anything you would like to add to your next truck camper purchase that was not asked about in the above survey?”


We knew there would be aspects of your next truck camper that our first ultimate camper survey would fail to ask.  To ensure that you were able to share everything you wanted, the final survey question was open ended and simply asked if there was anything we didn’t ask about, but needed to be addressed.

What we didn’t expect was over thirty pages of responses to this question.  Thank you again to everyone who participated in our first Ultimate Truck Camper Survey.  I can confirm that the industry has been very excited about the feedback and is eagerly digesting this information for future camper research and development.

To see the 2012 Ultimate Truck Camper Survey results, click here.

Scroll down to see the pop-up survey open feedback.



Is there anything you would like to add to your next truck camper purchase that was not asked about in the above survey? 

The same style of dinette table leg as in the Lance 815; the post is attached to the U-shape wall and the table top is always solid.

Regular fifty-four inch foam mattress and wardrobe alongside the front wall with shelves and sliding doors.

A real solar system to replace the generators forever.

I like my built-in propane generator but it’s too noisy.  Solar would be nice to have as well.

External AC power outlets, external storage pockets, and a catalytic heater that doesn’t use battery power

The lightest possible camper to have all the desired amenities but remain a stable, strong, well built unit.

I would really like the extra room of a flat bed camper (if and when I ever get a flat bed).

A basement, but with more usable space and maybe access from inside the living quarters.

A well laid out non-slide.

An easy to use slide out tray for maintenance.

Wired jacks that all run at the same speed.

A fifty foot cord as an option.  The twenty foot cord that came on mine was useless.

Full rear awning.

An exhaust fan that is quiet and functional.  We end up using the Fantastic Fan instead of the range vent fan.

I would like an air conditioner mounted somewhere other than the roof.

I am unfamiliar with some of these table options so I cannot comment.  I currently have a two post dinette and do not like it.

I would like a faucet that I can actually get my hands under to wash them.

I would like and area to mount my own television.

I have a Honda 2000 generator and would like a cabinet to store it in or a permanent rack for it to travel and be used in.

You didn’t ask, but I would like twelve volt outlets on both sides of the bed for an electric mattress warmer and cell phones, and at the dinette for cell phones, computers, and other toys.  Along with a propane furnace, an electric heater wired in to the thermostat with a selector switch for each unit.  I would like LED interior lights, an AM/FM/CD/DVD/MP3 player that’s mounted in a usable location.  I’m sure I have more comments but will save them for another day.  Thanks for asking.

Eleven or more foot camper that’s less than 3,000 pounds.  Hey, you said it was a dream camper.  Must also be well insulated, comfortable, and all systems functional well below freezing.

I like the looks and functionality of some of the all-in-one external utility areas you have shown on some of the newer campers which have all controls/valves.  I like that they are well lit, not dark holes with dark controls surrounded by dark wood.

Non-ducted heat campers seem to have hot spots and cold spots.  Then again, some of the ducted heat campers do as well.  Seems like the ducts are placed for convenience of installation and not efficient heating.

I would want both a generator and solar.  I would wish for a portable generator with a remote start.  It should also be operable when it’s in it’s own storage compartment so it can be started for a quick lunch without needing to be set up.  Once in camp, then it can be removed from its compartment and setup.  The generator should have a long exhaust pipe so the generator can be run on the ground under the truck (out of the weather and secure) with exhaust gases safely ported away into the neighboring campsite.  A portable generator would be quieter while running and easier to service.

I pay extra for better camper status indicators.  True indicators of holding tank fluid levels and battery condition.  Not just four LEDs, but real information from reliable sensors.

Better backup lights and a backup camera.

110 volt outlet and light under the side awning.  LED lights inside and out.

115 volt vanity lights in bathroom.

Remote power ceiling vent.

Larger selection of accessories as most accessories must be factory installed.  They do not have to be in all units, just available if desired.

LED interior and exterior lights.

Twelve volt cabover night light.

Unit price seems to be driving quality of components.

Next year’s survey should have a comment area on the survey.

Second HDTV; a twenty-four inch or larger television set in dining/living area.  A battery slide out tray for easy battery maintenance.  Clear see through propane tanks.

A cabinet on the back to store a portable generator would be nice.

A camper designed for someone 6’5” tall.

A closet closer to the entrance with 48 inches of length.

A camper that is built for two people, not for four or five.  A comfortable dinette with seating for two, maybe padded chairs instead of bench seating.  No extra beds or weight because of them.  Solar panels and a place to store a Honda 2000 generator and a can of gas.  No electric oven or microwave.  Electrical outlets both 12V and 120V on both sides of the dinette and two AGM batteries.

A center island containing a sink.  A second small screen television for viewing at dining table and not in bed.  Spray head type kitchen faucet.  Pocket shelves to handle keys, wallet, and cellphone.  An alternate dinette section containing two reclining captain chairs with built-in tray tables.  Larger pass-thru window area to truck cab.  Up-lighting sconces to reflect off the ceiling.  Better landing and steps (like the Fox Landing).

A comfortable place to sit, and maybe even to recline.

A decent AM/FM radio.

A factory installed non roof mounted air conditioner.

A fold down rear porch.

A front stabilizer for the cabover when camper is used off the truck bed as a stand alone unit.

An outside windmill to help charge the batteries.

A pop-up in the roof at the bedroom (more comfortable sex).  A recirculating toilet with grinder.  Five gallons of water can recirculate for a hundred flushes it would then be piped to normal output.  Less fresh water and black water space needed.  Bring back the pass through window to the pick up.  With a small air conditioner and microwave, the Honda generator is the quietest and low cost to run.   Stable-Lift is great on larger campers.

A solar panel system for one thing.  Easier entry to the overcab area.  Lights in the storage areas in overcab area.  Lights in outside storage areas.  One area for power cord, dump station, outside shower, and a built in Honda generator.  Or at least a built in generator that is quiet!

A stronger slide system for the dinette and refrigerator type slide.  Also a slide that does not leak air and water in the winter and rain.

A tankless propane hot water heater, all LED lights, and composite propane tanks.

A wet bath that a three-hundred pound man can sit in comfortably and do his business.

About the power, I would want solar and a generator.  What I really want is a side entry 11.5 foot Northern Lite.

Access to all plumbing runs, full wiring schematic, four season insulation, and ‘anti-freeze’ hot air ducting; a camper that is designed for ease of owner service.

Air dry plumbing for winterizing.

Accurate tank gauges.  Better entry steps like Arctic Fox just came out with.  Better fit and finish overall.

Accessible outside doors for inside storage compartments.  Sewer hose storage in bumper.

Access to both wheel well areas for additional storage.  Exterior 110-volt outlets and exterior 12-volt outlet.

Add an inverter; 120 volt to 12 volt; and 12 volt outlets.

Additional jack supports and that neat padlock system you pictured to secure the jack legs.

Aerodynamic shape.

All lighting to be LED.

Along with a generator, a solar charging system greater than 135 watts.

AM/FM antenna with good reception, yet sturdy.  In my case, a TV antenna would not be necessary.  More centrally located interior speakers, possibly two pair, but outside speakers are not needed.  Good control and monitoring of electrical systems.

Adjustable angle solar panels and more of them.

Easy entry into the cabover bed.

Any cold weather options.

Any truck camper that had two comfortable recliners instead of the dinette.  We would buy it immediately!

Attention to fit and finish of door latches, etc.  Design with easy access to owner-serviceable systems needed like winterizing and bypass valves, etc.  A detailed owner’s manual with instructions on major camper systems, options, features, and procedures is a must!

Awning style windows so you leave them open in the rain.

Back up camera with wired connection to truck, switches in the camper for any exterior lights, and motion controlled exterior lights.

Bamboo floor covering, satellite TV system, better stereo, DVD system, exterior TV, exterior BBQ connection, better insulation.  Toaster/convection oven above the stove

Bathroom slide-out.

Battery disconnect switch, good storage, Fantastic Fan, good winterization system, converter for 110v TV, exterior speakers with shutoff, large rear lights, grill connect, cab to camper window, lower window in door, dimmer for interior lights, 12v and 110v by cabover headboard, enough clearance to sit at dinette.

Because it is impossible to find a camper that fulfills my needs, I am looking into building my own camper.  I would even be interested in buying just a shell of the dimensions I specify and finishing it myself.  I have already have scale drawings of cabinets interior components and framing.  I currently own a new Lance camper and think I can do a lot better design.  There is so much wasted space inside and in the basement, and design flaws.  The camper seems to be designed by someone who has never used one for an extended period of time.  I also seems to have never been loaded on a truck to see how things line up and how it handles.  It is for sale right now!

Better condensation control inside the camper.

Better insulation package for a true four season camper.

LED interior lights.

Better insulation packages.  A long mirror for the wife

Better quality than the last truck camper I purchased.

Better way of entering camper when traveling, preferably a system which can be curbside directional, seeing we almost always tow some kind of toy with us, and something with three to four steps.  I’d  like to see more vendors offer two single beds at some of the shows.  Our last motorhome had singles, and it was a must have when we were looking for our truck camper.  It is just so much easier getting in and out of and not upsetting your better half while getting up at 3:00 AM to go fishing.  Oh Yeah, it’s also so much easier to make your bed at 3:00 AM.

Bring back the late 1960s full aluminum Avion truck campers.

Build in ability to add wired camera for the back of the camper.  Camera would run to the front cab of the pickup truck.

LED lights all around.

Sliding tray for batteries and propane.

Consider the square footage for the heater BTU and air conditioner requirement.

Built-in 12 volt bag-less vacuum cleaner.

Built-in six disc CD player and all LED interior lights.

Built-in diesel generator.  They are making smaller ones now that would be great to have.  I would also prefer a built in style propane tank like in a motorhome.  By the time you have two removable tanks, you have enough room for a built in tank.  That way you don’t have to unhook and pull out those heavy tanks.

Built-in generator compartment, stereo, and wall mounted heater.

Built-in backup camera, and built-in GPS/XM antenna.

Can’t think of anything just now.  Ask me again in 50 years from now.  Ha!

Carbon monoxide and smoke detectors.

CD stereo with USB port for playing music using a thumb drive.

Center of gravity location.

Aluminum protection for bottom sides of the camper.

Location of the camper plug for the truck; fore or aft.  We prefer aft.

Actual weight of camper certification after all factory options are added.  The weight certification should be the camper as it left factory for delivery less liquid/gas capacity.

Portable generator storage compartment.

Preference of the location of the dinette; mid to forward, and on the passenger side.

Choice of exterior filon siding color, other then white.

Interior LED lighting.

More clothing storage/wardrobe space.  Access to bathroom without having to extend the slide-out.

Kitchen at rear for easy shuttling of food to the outside.  Good solid steps.  Sturdy, well designed roof rack system for carrying kayaks and canoes.  Battery and propane compartments as low and as far forward as possible.  TV closer to dinette area.

Cold weather insulation package.

Converter/inverter.  Heat strip in air conditioner.  Day/night shades in dining and bed areas.  See through window from front to back aligned with inside rear view mirror.

Copious internal and external storage.  Refrigerator with separate freezer door.  Three-stage battery charger that works.  Interior entry-assist handle.  All LED lighting.

Creative ways to add storage.

Custom graphics.

Define specifically (chassis by brand/bed length/type wheels-tires/springs-air bags) which truck is compatible to the camper.

Digital capable with inside/outside CD, iPOD, stereo/speakers.  Outside propane for attachable BBQ.

Higher inside clearances in camper.  Many are too short for tall people 6’4” ceilings, including bathroom.

More storage.

Digital thermostat and a rear-view camera connection.

Device for ease of loading and unloading.  Energy efficient lighting.  Best insulation for winter camping and non-freezing tanks.  Sturdy, durable unit able to withstand off road adventures.

Easier access for senior with some physical disabilities.  Large handles to faucets and doors, easier access to overhead bed and grab handle to steady self to overhead bed, outside security and safety lights that are remotely controlled.  Make it easier for a single person to load and unload.  Backup camera viewing, better locking of camper, dead bolts and access door locks, access to more storage in truck bed that has unused space, and easily accessible storage.

Easily removed acrylic storm windows, a dedicated space for storage, and a ladder that allows easier access to the roof.

Easy entry steps like the Adventurer comfort step.

Enough head, leg, and knee room in the bathroom for someone 6’4”.  Have an option for a gaucho sofa in place of a dinette.  If a sofa is offered, then I don’t fit in the bath or it doesn’t have a sink.

Exterior storage for chairs, grills, and stuff you haul along.

Extra room in the wet bathroom.

Fold-down rear porch/steps with an awning would be nice.

Question 48 did not allow me to select generator and solar.  I would like both.

Also, there have been quite a lot of discussions about catalytic heaters.  This would be a nice dealer option.

Frost-free window frames, spray-in foam insulation in floor, walls, and ceiling, heated black, gray, and water tanks, lockable storage for firearms, super-strong super light weight construction materials, and LED lighting inside and out.

Full size flatbed camper built with the ruggedness of a Four Wheel Camper, but with a Northstar Escape Pod floor plan and amenities.

Half crank out windows in dinette area and bedroom area (louver type)

Built-in back-up camera.

Have slide-out switch in the rear of the camper so that you can access it from the back while standing on the ground.  I have a remote with my Eagle Cap now with no manual switch.

Hi Angela and Gordon.  Just give us the Chalet DS without the weight!  Saw a new double-slide at Bill Penney’s which has a full shower.  They lost all that bath storage and some on the outside also.  Would want both propane generator and solar.  Happy Holidays and a great survey. – Anne Brown

Hidden, slide-out trash can.

High build quality with good materials and construction methods.  Cut down on the glitz and frills.  Innovative storage systems outside and in.

Honda eu2000i generator storage and Polar Cub air conditioner.

How about a two step bedroom entry for those of us with bad knees.

How about incorporating a hidden style camper jack system in the corners of the camper or maybe even recessed jacks for better aesthetics?

I am currently looking for what the best camper for winter boondocking.  Most heaters with fans require too much electricity to run.  I need a heater that would use minimal power, vent exhaust, and be able to cycle in fresh air into the camper.  I did find a mini franklin soapstone gas fireplace that might be nice for this purpose.  But at high altitude, I have a serious need to vent in fresh air.  I’m almost tempted to build a camper myself.

I checked 3500-4000 pounds for a ‘dream camper’ weight, but realistically it would probably have to be heavier.  I want a slightly larger wet bath with a waterproof sink and cabinet combination.  I want a cassette toilet that is capable of flushing into a black water tank when dump and sewer is available.  The cassette seat design would work well for the wet bath shower seat.  I want a full size sink counter on the opposite side with waterproof gasket drawers and mirror doors for bath item use and storage.  I want a skylight, large fantastic fan, a side window, and gasket entry door.

Built-in racks and storage cubbyholes everywhere.  Design these in right from the start instead of having to add them later.  Multiple solar panel system.  Make the roof aluminum or some other permanent material that is waterproof from the start; rubber roofs leak.

I have a 2007 Lance 950. I heard they got rid of the momentary entry light switch on the exterior.  I am shocked, as that’s a real nice convenience.  I think my camper is real sweet.  I am also fond of the last step into the camper being inside the camper.  I never miss the floor space and it just makes it feel like so much less of a climb.  The only improvements that I would opt for next time around are more fresh water capacity, sliding bath door, and less overall weight.  I am also very fond of the two piece fiberglass shell type campers like Northern Lite, with so many less joints and I can’t see a down side.

I have yet to see a camper I like any more than my 1993 Alpenlite 11′ side kitchen with its giant closet.  Only when I can buy a new Alpenlite like mine with only very few modifications would I consider replacing it.

I just need a toilet with enough space to be used comfortably with privacy.  Too much space, weight, and compromise when they try to cram a shower in a sub nine foot unit. Some of us are just going camping and can shower when we get home, or jump in the lake.

I prefer a basement model, but hope someone will invent a scissor step that permanently attaches to the camper but does not impede access to the basement.  I am getting older and find it difficult to lift the scissor steps in and out of the basement.

I really would like to have a med-sized truck camper (size & weight) with a mid-bath and slide out dinette.

I want a camper that sleeps just two people and no more.  I do not want six people in the camper.  Just two, that is it.

I want to have a custom made bed with external storage.  This is not on the camper itself, but it is my biggest wish.

I wish more camper companies would offer non-slide hard sided nine to ten foot campers.

I wish someone would invent an easier loading system.  I’ve had mine almost two years and it’s not getting any easier to load.  Maybe you could do an article on easy ways to get everything lined up.

I would also like a solar panel system to keep the batteries charged.

Solar panels as another source of power.

I would be most interested in a model similar to the discontinued Lance 1040, with a rear tent and cassette toilet.  The Lance 830 looks good, but the 1040 looked better for my needs.  Very interesting survey.  Thanks for doing it.  Hopefully, some of the manufacturers will take note.

I would like a backup camera with a quick disconnect to the truck cab on my next unit.
Also, I would like several 12 volt outlets and several 110 volt outlets scattered around the unit.  A 110 volt external outlet is a good idea.

I would like a built-in propane generator and a solar panel.

I would like a real shower head that comes out of the ceiling.  I don’t want a hose that comes out of the top of the sink.  The hose always seems to get in the way.

I would like a slide-out only if you could enter and use everything with the slide in.  It’s a pain having to put out the slide just to use the facilities.

I would like a tankless hot water heater so the shower is actually useable for more than five minutes.

I would like as many storage compartments as possible.

I would like both a generator and solar in my next camper.

I would like both a propane generator and solar panel with state of the art battery storage system.

I would like the choice of no windows in the overcab and also would like the choice of twin beds.

I would like to see a dinette that, when made into a bed the length is at least seventy-eight inches.

I would like to see the campers get lighter.  I understand that to reduce weight you have to cut down on the options.  A person should not have to own a F-450 to haul a truck camper down the road.

I would like the manufacturer to be honest about the weight of their product.  Everyone knows campers are heavy, don’t try to hide it.  List what types of trucks can safely carry their camper.

I would like to see a longer than one year warranty on the camper.  If they make a quality product, they should stand behind it.

I would like to see larger group 31 batteries to support boondocking.  I would also get rid of large, loud, and heavy propane generators in favor of smaller portable generators.

I would like to see a boondocking version of the camper offered with solar panels, large batteries, large propane tanks, large holding tanks, and so on.

Remove the sink from the wet bath.  The bathrooms are too small and most people can or will use the kitchen sink to have more room to shower.

Calm down the fabric choices.  Change to some plain colors so that the normal person can sleep at night.

I would like to see options for storing sporting gear such as hunting gear, snow skis, and dirt bike gear.  Offer things like gun/ski racks or gear locker on the outside of the camper.

I would like to see the option of a non cabover, or a short cabover.  Also, we all know storage is one of the weak points of truck camper.  How about insulated storage in the wheel well areas?

I would not buy any truck camper that doesn’t provide a gray water tank at or near the potable water capacity.

I would prefer a rear slide with sofa or easy chair.  I had a truck camper in the 1970s, went through all other types and now back to the best; a truck camper.  The only thing is I could never get comfortable then or now.  Find a way to have two easy chairs for us older clients or, as mentioned, a sofa with foot rest.  Thanks.

I would prefer aluminum vent covers for the roof instead of those cheap plastic ones that break all the time.  I know the plastic lets in light, but I don’t care.  I prefer solid aluminum vent covers that last a lifetime.  I would also prefer a one piece ‘Leak Proof Roof’ made of aluminum.

I’d like both propane generator and solar panel system; solar for the beach and generator just in case.

If I go to a hard sided camper, it means I have gone to a 2500 or 3500 type truck, probably a dually, which means I can have a few more amenities, but again I don’t want to have too much space because then I will take to much which means weight.  There is a happy medium there some where.

If they could arrange the sleeping east-west, then how about a bedroom slide?  They are probably already looking into it!

Increased insulation and dual-pane windows.

Aluminum roof.

Lower profile roof AC.

Ducted heat to bath.

Catalytic heater option or provided connection to supplement winter furnace use.

Diversion valve to selectively bypass gray tank to an exterior hose fitting.

Satellite dish with pre-wire connections.

Telescoping camper jacks to reduce overall jack length and increase travel clearance.

Custom Replacement truck bed with bedside storage doors fitted for single rear wheel 4X4 long bed trucks, matching camper’s wing wall profile.

All LED lighting interior and exterior, including scare and rear docking lights.

Inverter capacity to run appliances when needed.

Indoor-outdoor thermometer

Innovation and increased safety in camper jack systems, carbon fiber shells to reduce weight, improved aerodynamics, and tankless hot water heater.

Inside LED lighting, more 120 volt outlets, and maybe two or three 12 volt outlets.

Instant hot water tap with filter and/or separate potable water tap, tank, and filter.

Instant hot water, step platform like the new Arctic Fox step, more external storage capability, and built in satellite antenna.

Instant hot water, tankless system, LED inside lighting, AM/FM/SATELLITE radio with outside speakers, prewired rear view camera, rear flood lights, wall mount air conditioner to keep profile low.  The basement would be for tanks, pump, and batteries with floor hatch access with storage area if possible.  The area on counter is for a stove with propane fitting and the stove is portable and can be used outside also, like my almost 50 year old coleman camp stove for example.  A shelf area with plug for an ARB or similar refrigerator that can be removed and used outside for tailgating or in another vehicle and easily removed jacks so I can go off-road.

Instead of a normal dinette I would like two recliners that could accommodate a table in between them.  I often thought that would be the ultimate in comfort for two people.

Interior LED lighting.

Interior LED lighting, rear eighteen inch porch, converter to battery wiring to handle eighty amps.  Fridge removal should be possible without removing door frame.  A rear camera wiring and outlet for interface to truck cab, electrical 120 volt AC and 12 volt DC wire system harness diagrams, trimetric install option, and bathroom bed area heater ducts.

Inverter/converter, solar controller, built-in factory 200 watt solar panels, satellite dish pre-wiring.

It’s long past time to get rid of the standard hurricane force air conditioner that freezes you if you are in the way while you sweat if you’re not.  Install ducted air conditioner like they do in the Chalet, major RVs, etc.

In #48 you only give a choice.  A preferable system would be solar panels/inverters, combined with latest in battery storage and a quiet generator for emergency backup.  Panel technology is improving as is battery storage.  RVs and campers should utilize this.

You didn’t ask about the size of the refrigerator which is a larger issue to many than the type.

While it’s interesting to find out the type of water heater, why not ask if they would want hot water on demand instead of a separate heated tank that has to heat six gallons whether you need one gallon or ten?  It’s a $250-350 (can’t quite remember but it’s cheap) option on the Chalet (this is a no brainer), it lowers your weight and lets you get hot water without having to heat water or keep the tank heated using up a/c or propane.

A camper needs to be built that is mounted to a light medium duty truck.  Campers have gotten so big with all we want on them that even a one ton dually is over worked.

Just build me a camper that is easy to get into and easy to fill the propane tanks and no front window.  Lifting the filled propane tanks is getting harder.  I have a 1030 Lance and you have to remove the regulator to remove the tanks.  It’s a hassle to lift them up.  Thanks.  Love the camper and truck combo.

Kick out foot rests on the sofas.

The kitchen sink needs non-flat bottoms for better draining versus flat as many stainless steel sinks made.

Lamilux gel coat exterior rather than Filon.

Phat Ladder

Laminated foam wall and floor panels

Large outside storage/tool box

Solar panel.

Larger wardrobe closet.

Last summer I bought a Lance 1050.  It meets my needs very well.

LED interior lighting

Built In, under cabinet coffee maker.

LED interior lights

LED lighting inside entire camper as well as outside, plat-cat vented heater, electrical connection from camper to truck in the rear of camper, some type of LED motion light on entry door.

LED lights on the interior of the camper.

Enough room for a large person to sit comfortably at the table and then make booth into a good size bed.

12 volt water pump

Fantastic fan in kitchen area with outside rain hood.

Less ala carte options and more value packaged options.

Less hanging closet space and more shelving.  Lightweight and adjustable shelving in overhead galley cabinets, or something to organize dinnerware, glasses and odds and ends.

Queen size bed

6’4” headroom if possible

Magazine and/or book rack

Hooks or rod for hanging wet clothes/jackets in the bathroom

Light but well designed aluminum frame, sidewalls, roof and sub-floor laminated with light-weight plastic/polymer backing instead of plywood might yield a lighter, half ton capable, rot free camper.

Light weight, low profile.

Lighted outside storage, power awning, canoe rack, four season, tank flush, iPod jack, more twelve volt outlets, composite construction where possible, insulated foil wrap, high efficiency air conditioner, 2000 watt generator capable, rear camera built in, gun ports

Linen closet in bathroom, metal or tile back-splash in stove area, and at least a 100 watt solar panel

Lots of outlets including exterior.

Lots of storage inside and out, wide body with mirrors mounted on the overhead camper, four built in stereo speakers with a Brennan stereo system, a cabover moulding system across the front of the cabover so that you don’t end up with that gunk dripping onto the truck windshield, window gutters around all the windows.  There are probably more little things I am unable to think of currently.

Lowest weight possible.

Make a special boondocking model (for those who will not pay exorbitant camping fees) with options available for easier boondocking.

Make interiors look like camps, not whore houses.  They waste way too much money on what they think are fancy interiors.  Where do these designers come from, Las Vegas?

Make it usable for one person with more desk/cabinet space for work areas.  A single bed w/storage would be nice instead of a huge queen. Make it easier to attach the truck cab window to camper window so you can leave it open and cool/heat the camper while moving.

Make it very well insulated.

Manufacturers can take lessons from the Chalet Ascent interior layouts which make excellent use of space to provide lots of storage and quality cabinetry.

Maximize storage.  My Bigfoot has cabinets and hampers where other campers have just open space.  I can only assume that’s to cut cost and weight.  Now if I could just afford everything I want.

More AC and DC plugs on camper interior, all weather AC plugs on both sides and rear of camper, four burner stove tops, stove vent that unlocks from inside the camper, option for catalytic heaters.

More electrical outlets for charging all the toys.

More external storage.

More head space above the bed in a non-slide camper.

More stealth, meaning less graphics, such as on the Wolf Creek.  It’s a rolling billboard.

More storage space.

The more storage, the better.

More truck camper dealers in the northeast.

Moveable propane stove top oven to take outside, propane on demand hot water heater mounted outside, lexan skylight for headroom, roof solar and charger.

My primary interest in a camper is #1 lightweight, #2 watertight for decades, #3 sleeps four comfortably, #4 auto leveling jacks, and #5 easy maintenance/easy to clean.

I want honest four season capability, so full insulation, non-weeping windows, and heated holding tanks would be important, as would sufficient energy storage (propane, batteries, generator) to get through long cold nights!

Need both solar and gas generator.

Need to have a Fantastic Fan in the middle of the camper.

Need a thirty-two inch flat screen TV with moveable mount.  It also needs to have two points to plug in a Satellite dome (Winegard GM-1518), one on top of the camper and one on the side of the camper to allow me to place the dome away from the camper when my reception is being blocked by trees.  My current camper has a fixed dome on the roof and at least half of the time the trees block my reception.  I also would like to have both a built in propane generator and a solar panel system for dry camping.  The standard built in generators seem to be stuck in an engineering time warp and tend to be noisy and low power.  It would be nice to have an option of a newer, quieter, and more powerful generator.

Night stands or a wall (closet).  I would prefer night stands.  I don’t want a wall next to my pillow.  Thank you.

No cabinets in the cabover. Removable tote system to pack house/camper.  Lighter and more space.  Corduroy or other non dog hair collecting fabric.  Full width porch and stair with rail (min size 5×3 foot porch).

No dinette.

Instead of a dinette, I want a double recliner (or three person recliner couch with flip-cushion-table at center position).  That recliner should face a thirty-two inch TV.  I’ll be in this camper for a few weeks at a time.  On some days it will rain.  I want to be comfortable while I watch a reasonably sized TV.

No front windows and no pass through doors.  Both create potential water and insulation leaks.  Higher quality insulation and better steps to the bunk.  Why can’t I choose a generator and solar?  LED interior lighting including inside the refrigerator.  LEDs that come on when cabinets open.

No rubber roof and no filon sides.

No window between the truck cab and camper.

No wood in the exterior walls.

Nope, that’s pretty much it.  When can I expect delivery?

Not all of us are six feet tall.  I would prefer a lower profile camper to save on gas as well as stability and better looking aesthetically.  Make the height an option for those who want six foot plus floor to ceiling height.

Often the area where a built-in generator set would go is not large enough for portable generator.  I would like to see that area larger for portables.

On demand hot water heater and non-ducted heater.  I wish somebody would build a camper for two people only.  Night lighting on the floor so you don’t trip over the dog.

On question 23, did you mean a 12V DC compressor refrigerator for the high efficient 12 volt system or just 12V DC resistive heating element?

On question 31, I would prefer an oak table top.

One thing I did not see was insulation.  And for me, I need lot of it.  It will cut down on heating and cooling.

Optional roof racks that are functional for canoes and kayaks as well as optional outside storage.  Maybe accessory packages pertaining to personal interests.

Options for at least a 2,000 watt sine wave inverter (with the microwave and 110 circuits sub-paneled off), a factory installed robust shore power surge guard, and two automatic transfer switches to coordinate between the shore power, generator, and the inverter.  Also the exterior should be more like a boat than a traditional RV for durability.

Outdoor television and speakers and/or outlets for speakers and television, weather station, light switches outside for both interior and exterior lighting.

Outdoorsy upholstery instead of cheap motel couch fabric.

Option of paying for better, longer drawers (to use up that dead space behind drawers, make them deeper).

Options for porch like you featured for Arctic Fox, but for other brands.

Outside shower.

Outside TV antenna, AM/FM/CD stereo system, and outside speaker hook-up.  There maybe other items, I just can’t think of any at this time.  Thanks.

Please incorporate fuel cell technology fueled by propane for electrical power.

Please, please select fabrics that are solid in design and not patterned with large prints. Almost all camper patterns seem to be of West Coast modern design which is hard for us New England types to deal with.  Solid colors or muted small patterns will be much easier to live with.

Power side awning, slide toppers, and automatic satellite TV dome with cable to satellite receiver.

Place for satellite receiver, HDMI cable from satellite receiver to TV, off-air cable to TV, HDTV mounted to view from rear sofa, interior 12v DC receptacles, inverter to power satellite.

I prefer kitchen at back away from sleep area and an awning on side or back over entry.

I prefer open out windows for rain; not sliding windows.

Florescent light option above dinette.

I use my roof ladder with boat pegs to hang towels.

My Adventurer 910FBS is pretty close to the perfect truck camper.  The sliding round table top in the Adventurer is great.  The large rear comfort step and fold down stairs are essential, with the fold-out grab rail.  I need LED outside light(s) on both sides and rear, LED rear overhead spot light from the top of the roof, and a longer side awning option.

For question #44, a choice should be mirrors.

For question #48, I would like both solar and a built-in generator.

I would like a built-in inverter.

I would like the new see-through propane tanks.

For question 15, I would prefer a system similar to Stable-Lift for easier loading and unloading of a heavy camper.  Corner jacks are inferior.

Under question 48, I prefer both a propane generator and a solar panel system.

I prefer LED lighting for both interior and exterior for power consumption.

Under question 43, I prefer laminate wood flooring with carpet runner.

I prefer a floor plan that has a full rectangle shape for the floor with nooks and crannies eliminated.

I would also like to see the space in front of the wheel wells utilized for satellite water tanks, battery compartments, holding tanks, etc. that could be loaded first and then hooked up to the camper when it is loaded.

Question 48 should have allowed multi selection.

Question 9 should have included AZDEL in which I would have chosen that rather than filon.

Radio with MP3 jack, all winterizing equipment installed and easy to use, sewer connection on side not under, and jacks that extend to ground before lifting.

Rather than a roof air conditioner, I would prefer a window type unit in a sidewall that could be slid in or out and that would be quiet compared to the RV roof units.  I would want enough insulation for a minimum of -10 F.

Rear bicycle and ski rack.

Reasonable pricing.

Roof mounted satellite antenna.

Roof rack system need to be Yakima or Thule like on the Lance campers.

Room for Honda EU2000i, interior/exterior storage, and optional overhead bunk.

Rounded front and sides for better mileage and better handling in crosswinds.  See the classic Avion and Cayo campers for examples.

Satellite television set-up.

Small, quiet, low amp exhaust fan and small fresh air intake through side walls of camper for ventilation in wet weather.  It could be incorporated into the range vent.  I have found roof vents and side windows to be problematic when it’s raining.

Snowbird in Canada made a two captains chair recliners that swung out to the aisle for the feet.

Sofa as one of two slides, dinette the other, and a handle assist for sitting up in bed.


Solar panels.

Solar and propane generator, LED lighting through-out, extra non-electric gas catalytic type heater, storage access from inside to truck bed area where there’s wasted space, and four season insulation with heated basement.

Solar in addition to propane generator.

Solar panel.

Solar panel.

Solar panel system.

Solar panels.

Solar panels along with a generator, outside speakers, lighting on the inside exterior compartments.

Solar panels, on demand hot water heater, back-up camera with the ability to plug into OEM truck system, four season insulation, solar glass or gorilla glass like solar reflective windows, a coat closet, built-in level fore aft/side to side, built in mud flaps to protect camper overhang, and memory foam mattress with thermal insulation layer between mattress and camper.

Solar ready roof (mounting and proper size wiring), better basement insulation, more access to basement, bigger battery bank storage, longer side awning, LED lighting through out, Sleep Number mattress option, better quality graphics, internal hard drive for storing movies and MP3s, outside 12v outlet, lighted steps or light closer to steps.  And, if your grey water is full (it always fills first), the option to pump some of the grey water to the black tank.  This option could increase some stays before dumping becomes a problem.

Solar recharging system.

Solar with generator, soft surface vinyl ceiling, and linoleum floor with removable carpet.

Solid color upholstery.

Some of us pull trailers.  Even with a 2500 we need a compact light camper.

Sound system with radio/CD/Blu-ray television system.

Stereo/XM radio with outside under awning speakers.  Touch screen monitor/computer/television.  Low maintenance roof, some outside storage room, and the money to afford it all!

Stereo system.

Stop the wood interior.  Light easy to clean materials are better.  Shelves with clean netting to hold in place instead of heavy doors.  Built in WiFi and cell signal boosters. Don’t lock the bed between cabinets, as much open floor space, bare bones!  Fifty years old and truck camping all of it.

More storage space.

Tankless hot water, true four season camper, macerator pump, portable generator compartment, whole house water purification system.

Tankless hot water heater.

The only thing wrong with my Arctic Fox 1150 and most other truck campers is that there is not a comfortable place to sit.  We need a Lazy Boy type of chair or a really comfortable sofa.  The prices of the truck campers are getting a little over the top!

The only winter capable camper we have found is the Northstar.  We will be reading TCM to see if any other manufacturer designs and builds for winter use.  Keep the articles coming.  T&S Watson

Thermal window coverings to cut down the cold air exchange.

TV antenna with booster and satellite.

TV on swing-out bracket for living area and bedroom, 1200 watt inverter, small home theater system, outdoor speakers.

Twin beds in cabover section.

Two Lazy Boy recliners instead of the sofa.  Gas generator and solar panel.  Slide-out in overhead bedroom also would be nice, making a four slide-out camper.

Two really, really, really, comfortable chairs instead of a dinette, with a small portable pole and table setup for coffee or a sandwich.  We want a comfortable way to watch TV from the chairs without getting a crick in your neck.

Under bed storage.

Use a generator that is quiet, or provide a sizable compartment to use for the Honda 3000.

Use high quality materials and workmanship, especially on cabinetry.  Also, sealing of roof penetrations needs to improve.  Finally we don’t like the Heki skylight.  When open, debris lands on the screen.  When you close the screen, the debris falls on the bed and/or clogs the track.  Poor design.  The traditional emergency escape hatch with fixed screen that we had on our previous camper was far better.

Variable speed furnace, tankless water heater, fireplace, thirty-two inch minimum TV.

Want both a generator and a solar panel.  We also want a rear slide with two rocker recliners and a small table in between, plus a regular dinette.

We currently have a 2011 Arctic Fox 1150 dry bath.  My next camper will be just as big or more.  We’ll be looking to go to a Dodge Ram 4500/5500 flat bed to take care of the weight issues and also will be looking hard at the biggest (and best) triple or double slide-outs too.  As a family, we need big, plus we tow.

We have a Lance 1191 with rear tent bed.  My next unit is going have three slides with a rear couch!

We have a Northern Lite 8’11” Queen Classic.  We pretty much have what we want.

We voted above for these but would emphasize that we wanted the largest black and gray tanks possible and really want a front window.

Weight is all important as many truck campers on the road today exceed GVWR of the truck.  This is very dangerous and will lead to court action in event of an accident. Further, make truck camper folk aware that enhancements to suspension systems does not increase the GVWR of their truck!

Why can’t we get interior LED lights, digital furnace thermostat, and wave type propane heaters installed as options?  A small dehumidifier installed that drains to the exterior?  Also we need exterior mounted side-facing flood lights controlled from the truck cab to aid in driving and parking our truck camper while off road and at night.

Why don’t we have tankless water heaters?  Why satellite TV when there is a V Qube available?  We need a generator big enough for her to run a hair dryer, a bathroom wall plug, LED lights throughout, and a reachable wall outlet.  My wife says they need a woman to help design the inside.  She has a million ideas.

Windows that you can’t see into.

I would like to have a 100W solar panel and the water and electric on the driver’s side.

Wire for internet, cable television, smoke, carbon monoxide,and burglar alarms, solar panels, and fresh water filter at sink outlet.

A tankless on demand hot water heater with pizzo ignition.

We would like a full package to include satellite choices for TV and at least two flat screen TVs.  If and when we purchase another truck camper, which is in fact very possible within the next couple of years, we would like to have it fully equipped from the factory instead of us needing to work through all of that after purchase.  In other words, during assembly, having all if the wires installed at that time, instead of the end user needing to go back and go through the hassle of doing it after purchase.  We are leaving May 1st for a four month trip from Pennsylvania to Alaska.  Before we leave, we will be installing some of the electronics previously mentioned.  Feel free to install a couple receptacles inside the bed area.  Ours has none there.  And feel free to put a couple on the outside also.  Ours has one, but it is usually on the wrong side.  Go figure.  Anyhow, thanks for asking.  Good luck with producing our next dream truck camper.  Cinda and Gary, Carlisle, Pa.

Some sort of mechanism to open the vent over the stove from the inside!  A bigger bath; offset the rear door to make room for larger bath.  Let’s pretend that all RV people are not children or small people and put in a real size commode, at least big enough so you can use the front and back at the same time.  Men have a real problem with this!

You might also ask which items I would not want and would stop me from buying a camper.  For example, no Heki skylight!  It’s a waste of money and poor utility.  Also, no acrylic windows.  I would also prefer a no mattress option so I could buy my own.

Four six volt batteries for 200 amps/hrs.  Or two six volt L16 type/19 inch height for 400 amps/hrs.

Solar panel system to charge the batteries.

Generator compartment.  I don’t like the distance between the city water inlet and the inlet for cleaning the black water tank.

Compost toilet.  Soil filter box for gray water and plants.  Compost bin.

I would like a generator compartment but would provide my own generator in addition to solar panels.  We are not fussy types so many of the things asked are not overly important like acrylic or glass, linoleum with or without a runner (we’d provide our own rugs), wet or dry bath, and many of other things (we put no preference quite a bit).  A slide for the batteries would be nice and maybe even the propane tanks.

Storage is a big thing for us.  We currently have a 1987 Lance Model LC900.  It’s got an 11.3 foot floor length and, because of its age, it doesn’t have any slides.  We have access to the side wells of the truck to carry extra items down low (this is great).  It also has a front window so we can see into the truck (also nice).

We keep looking at everything we can that’s new but still haven’t found anything that offers enough for us to change.  We have a large pantry (without a sliding rack hence we have more space), we have a large closet plus a smaller one at the front of the bed with no need to crawl onto the bed to get to things.  We have a double stainless sink (these little round things with a built in faucet are ridiculous) and a real stove (four burners with oven).  These campers with only two burners and no oven have to be for folks that don’t really go camping (they always eat out) or you have to run a generator to use a microwave.

If we could find a way to make our camper into a triple slide we’d be happy campers.  As we age we would just like to have a bit more space to move around with room for our Airedale Cooper without having to see how high off the ground we can make the whole unit.

One additional rant would be the subject of paint as opposed to decals.  To have to pay an additional $4,000 to $6,000 dollars for paint is crazy.  I know the decals are cheaper, but more often than not they end up looking like the devil after awhile.  I’d much rather have something with a simple two color paint job than all the swoops and swirls that peel off.

It seems that what we’re looking for continues to be something that’s just too difficult to make.  So, for the time being, we’ll just keep looking and enjoy what we have.

Satellite, all weather, easy to winterize, metal roof, Atwood jacks, rot free.  Shower that will keep the water in and a door/curtain will not stick to your butt.

Double slide-outs on campers in the nine foot to ten foot range.  Get rid of the traditional table dinette and go with comfortable seating; either a U-shaped dinette or a couch.

If they could build a solar panel system that could actually charge anything that would be great.  The panel in my camper is useless.

A compact washer and dryer combo.



Is there anything you would like to add to your next truck camper purchase that was not asked about in the above survey?

 It must fit a Toyota Tacoma, extended cab, 4×4.

Catalytic heater and a built-in electric heater, for the times shore power is available.

Removable portable jacks.

All appliances twelve volt including refrigerator, water heater, heat, air conditioner, microwave, and fans.

Radiant low volt floor; heats the coach and basement simultaneously.

Heat coils at shower head and galley faucet.

Portable fuel cell (methanol) backup power source.

Accessibility without raising the roof.

An aerodynamic shape.

All diesel appliances!  No propane!

All LED lighting and lightweight for 1500 or Tundra trucks.

An adventurous babe would be great!

An arctic pack built into the soft walls.

As we go more towards lighter trucks for fuel efficiency, and one day electric powered trucks, it is important to find as light a material as possible for the wet overall GVWR.

Bed lengths for tall people.

Car stereo mounting slot somewhere in the kitchen/dinette area, preferably accessible by remote from the sleeping area as well.  Single DIN opening would be good, double DIN would be a bonus to accommodate an AV deck.

A charging station for electronics, insulated soft sides, insulated floor, and high efficiency heat system.

I currently own a ten foot Alaskan with a three-quarter ton single rear wheel truck.  The dry weight is 2,000 pounds.  I get 13.5 miles per gallon.  I need capacity for three weeks out.  I would like to downsize to a Toyota Tacoma.  The current costs limit my travel.

Easy access to the over cab sleeping.  For example, well placed furniture to step up on.
Enough space in the cabover to sit up when popped up, if possible.  Reading lights in the cabover and privacy curtain between cabover bed and the rest of the camper.

Fantastic Fan in the kitchen or dinette

Flat bed compatible

Full entry door

Full height entry door, windows that open, a roof vent/skylight, LED lighting.

Hallmark custom items like LED lighting, customizable storage, steps, storage, etc.

I have a 2006 Dodge Dakota Quad, 5.5 foot bed.  I want a camper with toilet/sink combination that provides privacy like a hard wall or curtains.

I want some type of step system with rails to assist entry/exit.

I live in the southeast but camp lots in west.  I need four season capability with heat and air conditioning.

I have an internal switch to turn on external roof lights (flashing) to attract attention in the event of problems.  I could also add a second switch to turn on some sort of sound maker.  The flashing lights can also be used for your friends to locate you in a large campground or remote location.  I have added this to my unit after an undesired event.

Having answered your quiz on over cab models I would prefer no cabover.  How about one that would fit on a full size single rear wheel flatbed truck?  Something like an aluminum framed pop-up Northstar Escape Pod 950.

I love both hard side and pop-up campers.  That’s why I did both surveys.

I think I got most of my wish list in the PULSE SC pop-up Cari and Robby are building for me now.

I think this is a very comprehensive survey.

Storage will always be an issue but, the way I see it, more storage equals more weight, so not a lot of storage is a good thing.

You need to economize.

I want windows on all sides of my pop-up truck camper.  This includes the overcab bedroom!
I would definitely have to have a Fantastic Fan in the back area of the roof.  You can use it for a kitchen fan or to pull air over the top of you from the front window when you are in bed.  It is great when you want to close the top down, as it pulls in the sides.

Center of gravity has to be twenty-two inches or under.  Make it fit a half-ton quad cab truck.

I would like to purchase an all electric camper.  We always stay with hook-ups, and gas scares me.

I would like to see a double drain in the shower.  That way if your camper isn’t perfectly level, the shower floor will drain and be dry when you need to use the toilet.  Most places we camp are not level.

Please make the the dinette bed area 6’2” or bigger in width for us tall guys to get a good night’s sleep.  Do away with the useless cabinets that take up space.

I would like to see composite propane tanks.

I would like a tankless propane hot water heater.

I would prefer light to heavy; functional to fancy.

I would want it all from big tanks and super insulation.  I live in Montana and want to camp year round.  Also I want it to work with my Ford F-150 Ecoboost 6.5 box and air bags. I do not like aluminum frame construction due to cold spots in the camper from the frame tubes.  So either insulate the inside of the frame or build it out of wood.  I know people that have aluminum framed four season trailers that are cold because of the hollow frame aluminum. No good for cold!

I’d like to be able to use it in the winter for ice fishing too.

Inexpensive window air conditioner, an escape hatch with Fantastic fan in it, instant propane hot water, and folding steps to the side.

Inside actuator for stove vent.  Would rather a cassette toilet, if they ever make a big enough one!  A bath area that one can sit on the commode and shut the door!  Some one please make a shower, one piece fiberglass, just tall enough to fit in a pop-up with a curtain inside the waterproof base, and make it big enough to turn around in!

Inside/outside stereo digital capable, iPOD, CD

Insulated outside exposed plumbing so it won’t freeze while traveling

Insulation system for the fold down part of the pop-up camper and insulation for the solid part of the camper.  A high temperature warning/alarm system for pets in the camper (similar to systems in Canine Traveller vans and police K-9 vehicles) and a ramp for pets to get in and out of camper.  Opening window in camper to adjoin with truck cab sliding window.

Interior height over 6’6” and a full entry door

Inverter, 120/12 volt compressor refrigerator, LED interior lights, LP ‘flash’ water heater, LP furnace exhaust placed to allow heat on when top down, prewired for satellite TV and solar panels, pre-plumbed for under frame auxiliary fresh water tank, CO2 and LP alarms, optional under frame location for 20-gallon LP tank, fill gauge on LP tank.

Just in general, I would like to see pop-up camper manufacturers work harder on making their units luxurious like the hard side units.  Absolutely want heated insulated holding tanks.

LED lighting, insulated side curtains, increased storage, flat bed layout option.

Let’s have the Oregon Camper by Chalet come to market!

Lift mechanism capable of lifting four hundred to five hundred pounds.  Consider the weight of two sea kayaks and gear, solar, air conditioner, and two awnings. This is my only reservation on the Northstar, as I haven’t bought yet.  A Chevy Duramax crew cab can handle the camper.

Light weight, and close dimensions to the truck for off road use

Made for flat bed truck

Meticulous use of space

Mobile satellite television with receiver.

Most camper plans that I have looked at waste space for my needs.  I’m a single person.

My 1997 Shadow Cruiser 800K has the best galley of any light weight camper.  It has a three burner range, three stacked galley drawers, and adequate counter space.  Entry door is offset to the right.  My wife liked the galley and that was the determining factor.

I want interior access to the truck bed ahead of the wheel wells.

Need both solar and portable gas generator.  Insulated soft walls, high R-insulation,  true four-season unit, fully sealed and insulated, including propane storage, generator storage, etc.  It needs to be constructed of the lightest weight materials available, while maintaining exceptional strength and durability for off-road use.  The workmanship must be excellent.
No overhang wanted.

Storage around outside where slide-in would have been inset.

Wood interior preferred, not plastic, or fabric.

Light weight is very important.  Most camping is in mountains of the west and in national forests.  The market for truck campers for half ton trucks is rather limited now, and more choices are needed.  Anything to reduce weight is welcome.

I would like both generator and solar.

Overhead cabinets

Roof Storage.

Should include several 12v and 120v outlets throughout

For the size of the bed, I want a full queen 60” x 80”.

Lots of storage space, inside and out.

Lighted license plate holder on back of camper.

Plugs on outside of camper, both sides.

Ability to tap into propane from outside of camper.

Outside lighting, not just a bug light.

Built in fold up table on outside.

Is it possible to have a slide-out on a pop-up?

Something to enhance internet connectivity.

Storage space above the refrigerator, LED lights interior and exterior, back up light, more running lights, more interior lights, more storage space in and out.

Sturdy frame for integrity after years of rough road/off-road use

The lightest camper weight possible in keeping with our choices of amenities above would be a big factor in which camper I purchase.  Tell them to keep it light!

Try and keep the batteries and propane tanks forward of the rear axle.

A vinyl sofa covering and everything easy to wipe down.  Light weight, durable, made for four wheel drive off-roading, no overhang off the back or side of truck.  Work things manually wherever possible so if things break you can still operate them.  Keep it simple and efficient.  No foam or products that produce harmful chemical emissions into the air we breathe.  Definitely put a fan in bathroom!

Sleeping room for three adults please.  A narrow three slot knife block, and go solar.  Thanks!

Water filtration, wired for satellite dish, solar controller, and inverter/converter.

Would like to see better quality; my pop-up has some fit and finish issues.

Your Hallmark article renewed my interest in pop-up campers, should I get more adventurous.

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