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Need Help Quick on Bed Payload-New Camper

Discussion in '1st Gen. Tacomas (1995-2004)' started by bozotaco, Jul 26, 2012.

  1. Jul 26, 2012 at 5:56 AM
    #1
    bozotaco

    bozotaco [OP] Well-Known Member

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    Howdy guys. I'm all set up to drive 4 hours West and pick up a camper for my Tacoma tonight . I've been looking for a while, and was even considering building my own before I found this one. The camper is 7' feet long, so I know it will stick out a bit. However my real concern is that the current owner estimates that the camper weighs about 1,000 pounds. I know my trucks payload can handle that, but will I be ok driving those 4 hours? When I get back I plan to take it off, and gut it, as well as possibly installing air bags or new leafs. Any advice would be much appreciated. Also should I take my tailgate off? Or just let it rest on top? I have a 2004 Reg Cab with the 2.7 4cyl.
     
  2. Jul 26, 2012 at 6:03 AM
    #2
    BVCOTaco

    BVCOTaco Well-Known Member

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    You should be fine. Just drive careful because the center of gravity of your truck with the camper will be much higher.
    I would just leave the tailgate on as it will give some additional support to the camper since it is longer than your bed.
    The air bags will definitely help once you get the camper back home.

    Just take it easy and you should be fine. Your 2.7L might be fighting the wind resistance of the camper if you drive into any heavy winds.

    Good luck!
     
  3. Jul 26, 2012 at 6:21 AM
    #3
    pippen

    pippen that was'nt a vitamin!!

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    I carried 1500 pounds of scrap metal 2 times and I had to watch out for the bumps in the roads, I bottomed out a few times (1500 is the MAX capacity if I recall). I think 1000 pounds you should be ok like BVCOTaco said, just drive with more caution.
     
  4. Jul 26, 2012 at 6:23 AM
    #4
    bozotaco

    bozotaco [OP] Well-Known Member

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    What do you guys think about the tailgate? Leave it down or take it off?
     
  5. Jul 26, 2012 at 6:45 AM
    #5
    bozotaco

    bozotaco [OP] Well-Known Member

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  6. Jul 26, 2012 at 6:51 AM
    #6
    pippen

    pippen that was'nt a vitamin!!

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    I'm not really familiar with how the bed campers are mounted and what they sit on, if the tailgate is not in the way then I'd leave it on, it could help support the weight if it sits on it some. Maybe bring some tools to remove it if its in the way?
     
  7. Jul 26, 2012 at 6:54 AM
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    Pugga

    Pugga Pasti-Dip Free 1983 - 2015... It was a good run

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    I've heard some of the campers (if they curl over the top of the cab) require some sort of blocking in the bed to raise the camper enough to clear the cab. I'm not sure if that's an issue with the 1st Gens or with all campers but it might be something to think about when lowering the camper into the bed.

    As far as the tailgate, leave it on, if it's in the way, remove it. The tailgate comes off in less than 30 seconds, no tools required (maybe a flathead screwdriver if you have delicate fingers).
     
  8. Jul 26, 2012 at 7:08 AM
    #8
    pippen

    pippen that was'nt a vitamin!!

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    My 2004 model has 2 bolts, unlike the 2nd Gens. which come off in seconds with no tools. I tried to put on a hose clamp yesterday for the tailgate-theft mod and saw that it did'nt need one! :D Anyways a socket wrench and extension and the right size socket should only take a few minutes to remove.
     
  9. Jul 26, 2012 at 7:09 AM
    #9
    Pugga

    Pugga Pasti-Dip Free 1983 - 2015... It was a good run

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    Damn, sorry, I didn't realize that. I figured they were a quick release like every other pickup made in the last 20 years :eek:
     
  10. Jul 26, 2012 at 7:20 AM
    #10
    bozotaco

    bozotaco [OP] Well-Known Member

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    What do you guys think about the weight? I The owner told me thinks it's a little more than 1,000 pounds. I've hauled about that before, but not for 4 hours. Just wondering if it could do any permanent damage. Also what if it's 1500 pounds. Is there anything to look for when I put the camper on thats a red flag?
     
  11. Jul 26, 2012 at 7:46 AM
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    Pugga

    Pugga Pasti-Dip Free 1983 - 2015... It was a good run

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    Sitting squarely on the bump stops, blowing out an axle seal, engine overheating, transmission overheating, brakes failing. There's a lot that 'could' go wrong when hauling something heavy but if you take the proper precautions, a lot can be avoided. How you drive can put a lot of stress on the engine and driveline, if you take your time and don't push it hard to hold highway speeds, let it loose some speed on uphills, etc, it'll be easier on the truck. Same with brakes. Unfortunately, since you're doing this soon, you can't prepare the suspension so it is what it is. Axle seals are a wear item and can be as simple as luck regarding when they let go but hauling and towing can decrease their life somewhat.
     
  12. Jul 26, 2012 at 7:47 AM
    #12
    Hillingdoner

    Hillingdoner Well-Known Member

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    Never dealt with a slide in camper so not too familar with how they mount etc. Maybe have a dig around on youtube for tips on mount/dismount/fastening/use.

    Some very good suggestions already from the previous posters!

    If it is 1000 lbs I would think you'd be fine. Just keep in mind once you start using it that you need to be mindful of the amount of gear you put in it for your load capacity. If your springs are iffy then your going to get some sag which might effect handling a bit apart from the previously mentioned centre of gravity.

    I've only got sales brochures up to 2000 so not sure if it will be of help to you, but I would not imagine Toyota would lessen payload on their trucks (one of the main competition points) so would think it should be at least the same range.

    In 2000 the regular cab 4x2 standard truck only had a 2.4 engine not a 2.7 engine. Shows a payload of 1664 lbs w/manual and 1644 lbs with auto.

    For that year the 2.7 was only available in the PreRunner as a 2wd. With the 2.7 PreRunner the payload shows 2069 lbs and is auto only.

    Only post that to give you some sort of idea on load capacity at least. As I said, something to think about when you are planning a trip with it and loading it up with gear.

    Tailgate wise I'm with some of the others. Leave it on. Maybe do a practice run removing it and putting it back on before setting off. That way there are no surprises if you end up needing to take it off to get the camper in place. Then you just need to bring the tools with you and you are set.
     
  13. Jul 26, 2012 at 7:51 AM
    #13
    Hillingdoner

    Hillingdoner Well-Known Member

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    I could be VERY WRONG about this, but I thought campers, even slide ins, had to have some sort of capacity plate mounted on them somewhere that showed their weight?

    Maybe have the seller look for that and give you the numbers off of it (or even better send you some clear pictures of it). Also, you may be able to get some specs if you know a year and brand on it. Guess depends how old, but if the company is still in business then maybe they can provide some more precise info on weight.
     
  14. Jul 26, 2012 at 8:00 AM
    #14
    bozotaco

    bozotaco [OP] Well-Known Member

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    Thanks for the reply. My owners manual states about the same payload as that. So for that I think I should be good. Just seems like a ton of weight for a small truck, but oh well. I figure if she doesn't want to haul it I can always rent a trailer and stick it on there. Once I get back I plan on airbags and probably gutting the trailer out to get rid of some weight.
     
  15. Jul 26, 2012 at 11:29 AM
    #15
    twfsa

    twfsa Well-Known Member

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    I'de be thinking about how to tie the camper to the bed for the trip back home.
     

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