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Messages - SJ Truck Camper

Greetings Livin' Lite Family,

Could you please recommend the best truck for a 2013 Livin' Lite / Camp Lite CLTC10, 2,190 lbs/ slide in truck camper?

Brochure requires a 3/4 ton (or higher) 8 foot bed and I'm partial to dually as the back end squats with full tanks.

I would very much appreciate any help from anyone in the know. Thank you so much. I'm grateful for this forum.

Greetings from California.

I recently purchased a used 2013 Livin Lite / Camp Lite slide in truck camper. Originally, the dealership refused to sell the camper (that required a 3/4 ton or higher truck) without the 1/2 Toyota Tundra truck attached.

I was concerned because it seemed like too much camper for the truck. But they showed me the stickers (included) and convinced me it was safe by saying, "The total weight /the GVWR of the truck- is 7200 lbs - the rear/GAWR is 4150 lbs and the front GAWR is 4000lbs. The truck without camper is 6,000 (got a certificate of weigh 5/22/21). This camper is all aluminum it weighs 2,190 maximum with standard equipment and full tanks. So when camper is fully loaded WITHOUT HUMANS it's still nearly half the weight of what rear axle alone can hold. Besides," they said, "the guy who owned it before you drove it across the country no problem."

The minute I drove off the lot friends and strangers alike alerted me to the dangers of how low the back end was squatting (which curiously it did not seem to do in the before it was painted pictures). When I raised my concerns they told me that it was because the water tank was full and that the rear air bag suspension that had been added would kick in. I consulted five different professionals, including a Toyota dealership who all concurred that, The 2015 Toyota Tundra is a 1/2 ton, light-duty truck. It supports a 1,430 lb bed payload. No matter what you do to modify the Tundra, like adding air shocks or leaf springs, the center of gravity on the camper is way too high to be safely paired with that truck under any circumstances. Even stablizers or a TRD sway bar won't compensate enough. Page 506 of the Tundra owner's manual stated a weight capacity without towing package: 1,475 and With towing package: 1,405 lbs max. The Camper weighs 2,190.

I felt duped.  :-[

They explained, the difference between GVWR and the payload capacity. Stating, Payload Capacity is simply the difference between your truck's Gross Vehicle Weight Rating and the Curb Weight. Tundra's GVWR: 7,200 lbs (based on the sticker placed on the driver's side doorframe in the vehicle) Tundra's Curb Weight: 6,120 lbs (based on the weigh-in result of 6,000 lbs plus the additional weight of filling the gas tank: 120 lbs*) The difference between the Tundra's Gross Vehicle Weight Rating and the Curb Weight is 1,080 lbs (7,200 - 6,120 = 1,080). Therefore, the total of 1,080 lbs is the maximum weight that the Tundra can haul including camper, passengers, and cargo.

THE CAMPER'S WEIGHT: According to the sticker on the side of the Livin' Lite CLTC10, is 2,190 lbs when the water and propane are full. Which means the camper is 1,110 lbs TOO HEAVY for the Tundra (1,080 lbs Payload Capacity - 2,190 lbs Camper Weight = -1,110 lbs)

As I repeatedly shared with the dealership, this camper was for me to travel with my child- safety was of the utmost importance to me. Due to the fact that the truck was not equipped to safely carry the camper, I was forced to return the truck and am left with just the camper. They even insisted I return the Torklift Fastguns Turnbuckle system with the truck as they planned to attach another camper (hopefully a safer one) to that truck and resale it.

NOW... I need a truck (and a new Torklift Fastguns Turnbuckle system). I want something safe without too many miles. I plan to drive around the country on a bucket list mission and to take my child to visit various colleges. It's also our safety net home as I'm not sure if our housing will be secure after all that we've been through with the pandemic.

I've been encouraged to get a 3/4 or 1 ton dually. RAM 3500 has been mentioned. Early to mid 2000 Dodge seem to be good. With the rising cost in fuel, I am also curious about hybrids but not sure if any could carry this payload. I would very much appreciate any help from anyone in the know. Thank you so much. I'm grateful for this forum.