1. Welcome to Tacoma World!

    You are currently viewing as a guest! To get full-access, you need to register for a FREE account.

    As a registered member, you’ll be able to:
    • Participate in all Tacoma discussion topics
    • Communicate privately with other Tacoma owners from around the world
    • Post your own photos in our Members Gallery
    • Access all special features of the site

Seeking help for camper shell parts replacement!

Discussion in '1st Gen. Tacomas (1995-2004)' started by hollyamos22, Jun 30, 2020.

  1. Jun 30, 2020 at 12:38 PM
    #1
    hollyamos22

    hollyamos22 [OP] Member

    Joined:
    Jun 30, 2020
    Member:
    #333007
    Messages:
    7
    Gender:
    Female
    First Name:
    Holly
    Long Beach, CA
    Vehicle:
    2004 Toyota Tacoma Prerunner
    Carryboy Camper Shell
    Hi all! Long time owner, first time poster!

    I'm needing some help. I have a 2004 Toyota Tacoma Prerunner with an extended cab. I bought it used in 2009. About a year later, I inherited a Carryboy camper shell for it from a family friend. I don't know what series/model it is, which is complicating my hunt for some replacement parts. I suspect it's a Series 5, but some minor differences give me doubts and I can't find anything on the shell itself that says which version it is.

    The gas struts that hold up the back window stopped working many years ago. My father and I removed one and sent it to a parts house to have it matched (my father was a master auto tech and owned his own repair shop before retiring). They couldn't find anything comparable. Ever since, I've been using a screw-on clamp to hold the other strut in place when it's extended to keep the window open. It works, but it's not ideal. I'm looking to get those replaced.

    The one strut I have has a part number on it: SPD-GS-7932. Google results for that are exactly zero, so I did all sorts of measurements to try and get the correct 3rd party replacements. They're 13-14" extended and 8.5" compressed. I ordered a pair that had a force of 10 lbs. each (https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B019NUNA2M/ref=ppx_yo_dt_b_asin_title_o04_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1) because I assumed the weight of the window couldn't be more than 20 lbs., but now I'm second-guessing that. What I received by mistake from the seller was 14" extended, 8.5" compressed, and 24 lbs. of force EACH, which is a total of 48 lbs. of force. I'm afraid that if that's too much, installing them and trying to close the window may break the glass. I'm also having issues with finding the right brackets.

    So, my questions:

    -What model/series of Carryboy camper shell do I have? That may help in my hunt. (Side question: Were there series 1-4??)

    IMG_0077.jpg

    IMG_0082.jpg

    -How much might the back window weigh? (I found this: https://www.njaluminiumlinings.com/carryboy-truck-top-tailgate-glass-and-parts.html, but it says 50 kg, which is ~110 lbs. I'm a tiny woman weighing around 100 lbs, so I know I'm not lifting my own body weight in window every time I open it up. It's gotta be less.)

    -What might the appropriate force in poundage be for me to buy? Will these 24 lbs. work without risk of breaking the glass?

    IMG_0079.jpg

    IMG_0035.jpg

    -Struts I've been finding are for 10mm ball sockets on both ends. What would be the appropriate replacements for the brackets? My existing strut has a ball socket on the bottom, but not the top. I found some (https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B07K7HHVZJ/ref=ppx_yo_dt_b_asin_title_o02_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1), but the holes are not far enough apart and the balls studs are the wrong orientation (outside instead of inside). I've already returned them. The shell's embedded screws are 2 inches apart, so I got these: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B013F4JHG0/ref=ppx_yo_dt_b_asin_title_o00_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1. Ball studs are the correct orientation, but there was only a measurement of the entire bottom of the bracket, which is 2.5". They haven't arrived yet, but I'm hoping the holes are the correct distance apart and large enough to take fit onto the embedded screws.

    IMG_0031.jpg

    IMG_0032.jpg


    Anyway, I'm just hoping someone can help me out with the specifics of this project. Perhaps someone who has done this already?

    Thanks much!
     
    Last edited: Jul 1, 2020
  2. Jun 30, 2020 at 2:33 PM
    #2
    exminnesotaboy

    exminnesotaboy Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Aug 9, 2009
    Member:
    #20904
    Messages:
    190
    Gender:
    Male
    Maple Grove, MN
    Vehicle:
    01 Tacoma 4x4 V6 Xtra Cab
    Bilstein 5100's / OME 881's / Wheelers 5 leaf pack / ProComp 1069 wheels / 265/75-16 Michelin LTX tires
    I can't help you with the specs of your shell, but I can help with the struts.

    I have purchased a few sets and referred a few folks to this guy for their strut needs - all great results:
    https://www.ebay.com/sch/strut-your-stuff-here/m.html?_nkw=&_armrs=1&_ipg=&_from=
    I would be surprised if he didn't have the specs you need - send him a message with the number you found on them, he may be able to decode it and he surely will be able to tell you the hole spacing, ball orientation, etc..... I have used a few of his struts + mounting brackets in different configurations on camper builds without issue. I would NOT use those incorrectly rated struts on your shell - I have seen what over-rated weight rating struts can do to a camper hatch and its not pretty. It just puts too much stress on the mounts, hinges and generally every part of the door/mount. Of course, a camper hinge is different than a truck bed shell hinge, but I would wait until you get what you need.

    To determine the weight of your hatch, get a fish or suitcase scale. Remove the existing struts and hold the hatch to the normal open position with the scale. This is not truly the best way to determine the weight needed, but it will get you close enough. Then divide the weight by two(for two struts) and order that weight needed. That has always worked for me. good luck!

    edit: if the existing brackets are still solidly mounted, you can just replace the ball portion, then you don't have to worry about mounting the brackets at all. on the door itself, you could replace that non-ball mount with a ball. i know the guy i referred you to sells just the ball portion. This would make things much easier :)
     
    Hamer95USA likes this.
  3. Jun 30, 2020 at 2:39 PM
    #3
    2004Taco

    2004Taco Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 28, 2008
    Member:
    #9556
    Messages:
    692
    Gender:
    Male
    Long Beach, CA
    Vehicle:
    04 Double Cab PreRunner SR5 Trd
    Have you taken your shell to your local Camper Shell Store? I'm sure they can help you.
     
  4. Jun 30, 2020 at 2:43 PM
    #4
    hollyamos22

    hollyamos22 [OP] Member

    Joined:
    Jun 30, 2020
    Member:
    #333007
    Messages:
    7
    Gender:
    Female
    First Name:
    Holly
    Long Beach, CA
    Vehicle:
    2004 Toyota Tacoma Prerunner
    Carryboy Camper Shell
    Gotta be honest, didn't even realize stores specifically for camper shells existed. Turns out there's three in my immediate area! Thanks!
     
    2004Taco likes this.
  5. Jun 30, 2020 at 2:43 PM
    #5
    hollyamos22

    hollyamos22 [OP] Member

    Joined:
    Jun 30, 2020
    Member:
    #333007
    Messages:
    7
    Gender:
    Female
    First Name:
    Holly
    Long Beach, CA
    Vehicle:
    2004 Toyota Tacoma Prerunner
    Carryboy Camper Shell
    A suitcase scale is a great idea! Thank you!

    Thanks for the referral too. I'll ping him about all this.
     
  6. Jun 30, 2020 at 8:45 PM
    #6
    Hamer95USA

    Hamer95USA Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2017
    Member:
    #207262
    Messages:
    426
    Gender:
    Male
    Vehicle:
    1999 Toyota Tacoma 4x4 SR5 extended cab reborn!
    Complete OME suspension kit, Used low mileage V6 engine swap, black powder coated Chou Seiki T15x7JJ, ARB deluxe bumper, Smitty Bilt nerf bars, Weathertech floor liners, Torklift tiedowns
    I have the same issue as the OP. I had the misfortune of buying the wrong gas shock to replace the worn out gas shock on my rear camper door. The shock that I installed was too much pressure and it damaged the hinge and tweaked the door itself. I took my camper shell in for repairs. Campways was where I bought my camper shell originally. They can only service the window seals or reinstall the camper shell. They wouldn’t do the repairs on the door hinge or replace the gas shocks for the rear shell door.
     
  7. Jul 1, 2020 at 1:23 PM
    #7
    hollyamos22

    hollyamos22 [OP] Member

    Joined:
    Jun 30, 2020
    Member:
    #333007
    Messages:
    7
    Gender:
    Female
    First Name:
    Holly
    Long Beach, CA
    Vehicle:
    2004 Toyota Tacoma Prerunner
    Carryboy Camper Shell
    This occurred to me as the ball is, in fact, a separate entity to the bottom bracket itself and I saw they get sold separately. However, in removing the right strut to try and have it matched, that bottom bracket got taken off and lost in the shuffle. Since I have to replace that AND the uppers (which are not ball mounts), I figured I'd just do them all.
     
  8. Jul 1, 2020 at 1:25 PM
    #8
    hollyamos22

    hollyamos22 [OP] Member

    Joined:
    Jun 30, 2020
    Member:
    #333007
    Messages:
    7
    Gender:
    Female
    First Name:
    Holly
    Long Beach, CA
    Vehicle:
    2004 Toyota Tacoma Prerunner
    Carryboy Camper Shell
    What force/poundage were the struts you used that did the damage?
     
  9. Jul 1, 2020 at 6:56 PM
    #9
    hollyamos22

    hollyamos22 [OP] Member

    Joined:
    Jun 30, 2020
    Member:
    #333007
    Messages:
    7
    Gender:
    Female
    First Name:
    Holly
    Long Beach, CA
    Vehicle:
    2004 Toyota Tacoma Prerunner
    Carryboy Camper Shell
    Update!

    I got a luggage scale and the window weighs 13.5 lbs, so the 24 lb. struts are definitely way too much. Luggage scale worked like a charm though!

    Amazon seller who sent me the wrong struts is sorta arguing with me about this, so I have to file a claim with Amazon tomorrow and find what I need elsewhere. They're the only ones who sell what I need on Amazon and I'm not going to order from them again obviously.

    Will be getting in contact with eBay fellow suggested in hopes he has what I need.

    Brackets are still enroute.

    More to come on my progress.
     
  10. Jul 11, 2020 at 3:38 PM
    #10
    hollyamos22

    hollyamos22 [OP] Member

    Joined:
    Jun 30, 2020
    Member:
    #333007
    Messages:
    7
    Gender:
    Female
    First Name:
    Holly
    Long Beach, CA
    Vehicle:
    2004 Toyota Tacoma Prerunner
    Carryboy Camper Shell
    Project complete!

    As it turns out, even though the glass door is only 13.5 lbs., the weight when lifting from the side instead of the middle requires more force, so the 24 lbs. struts were appropriate. Mike from the eBay store explained this to me and I found a couple YouTube videos that backed that information up here:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nX2TZhad-aw

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I2nJ7S-f6Tg

    The brackets I bought just needed the holes to be a bit larger and closer and the angle needed to be altered just a hair to clear weather sealing: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B013F4JHG0?ie=UTF8&psc=1

    The bottom brackets were, in fact, still intact. One was just missing the 10mm ball since it turns out those were built into the old struts. I was able to find some separately that fit: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B07MXYP21F/ref=ppx_yo_dt_b_asin_title_o01_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1

    upload_2020-7-11_15-33-19.jpg upload_2020-7-11_15-33-40.jpg upload_2020-7-11_15-34-6.jpg IMG_0151.jpg
     
    Last edited: Jul 12, 2020 at 11:10 AM
    Hamer95USA likes this.
To Top