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Author Topic: Sawmill camper?  (Read 12369 times)

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Offline OlJarhead

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Sawmill camper?
« on: March 27, 2017, 02:17:12 PM »
Not really a sawmill thread but sorta?

I'm looking for a camper to haul to the mill sites I go to and was thinking a small one, maybe 8' or 8'6" but found an 11 1/2 foot one in good shape for $2100......am thinking about it but wondering what you guys think?  After all, that's a BIG camper but I need a place to stay when I go to remote jobs (which is almost all of them).

My F350 can haul it and tow the mill I'm pretty sure ;) but is it too big??

What do you think?
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Offline Magicman

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Re: Sawmill camper?
« Reply #1 on: March 27, 2017, 02:49:53 PM »
First, are there any roof leaks, and are the walls & floor solid without any springiness?

Yes, that is big, but maybe still OK.  It probably has a North/South overcab bed which adds some length.  You will also probably need a receiver hitch extension for towing.  It must have a "wet shower" with commode/lavatory.  This is OK.  Does the refrigerator work because that is a high dollar item. 

I am sure that you can handle the weight but you may very well need/want airbags to level the truck when it is loaded.  I did.  Are you planning to keep it loaded or maybe unloading it at the sawing site?  Does it have hand crank outriggers or are they powered?  If they are hand cranked, you can use your power/cordless drill and a homemade adapter.

Knothole Sawmill, LLC     '98 Wood-Mizer LT40SuperHydraulic   WM Million BF Club Member   WM Pro Sawyer Network

Never allow your "need" to make money to exceed your "desire" to provide quality service.....The Magicman

Offline OlJarhead

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Re: Sawmill camper?
« Reply #2 on: March 27, 2017, 02:53:30 PM »
Thanks MM.  I was thinking it might be tough to get into 'off-road' locations but maybe not?

Guess I need to know the weight of it.  Air bags shouldn't be an issue, just an added expense but then I expect a few extra expenses (like the extension to tow it).

One of my guys told me about it since his' wife's Aunt is selling it.  Says everything works and it's in good shape.  Saw some pics of it and it looks pretty nice for $2100.

I have seen several 20 year old campers for sale around $3k that appeared in good shape but they sell FAST so it's possible this one is decent.

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Offline Magicman

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Re: Sawmill camper?
« Reply #3 on: March 27, 2017, 03:10:19 PM »
Airbags are not an expensive item at all but are a very worthwhile option.  Of course they do not increase your carrying capacity, but they certainly will prevent that tail-wagging look by leveling the truck up.

It sounds like that camper needs looking at.
Knothole Sawmill, LLC     '98 Wood-Mizer LT40SuperHydraulic   WM Million BF Club Member   WM Pro Sawyer Network

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Offline KirkD

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Re: Sawmill camper?
« Reply #4 on: March 27, 2017, 03:24:38 PM »
Look at the Northstar or Alaska popup campers they are very light and when collapsed are cab height. Just stay away from ones that have a two piece rear door.
Just looked and there is a Northstar TC800 on C/L in Nevada for $1850 Weighs 1240 lbs......
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Offline OlJarhead

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Re: Sawmill camper?
« Reply #5 on: March 27, 2017, 04:44:00 PM »
So this is an 11 1/2 foot camper that the owner says weighs 4000lbs -- I'm guessing that's wet weight as that sounds VERY heavy since the payload on my F350 is about 4200lbs.

Said they hauled it on their F250 for years but just bought a new camper.

Everything works and no leaks.

I have no camper tie downs so can't just go haul it off but I discussed setting it on the truck to see how it looks and feels.  Not sure what else I can do without actually having tie downs added -- I also saw something on the VIN for my truck that said it had the snow plow option which I'm toldl means I have heavier front springs (which I've read helps when hauling a camper)....I'm thinking I could go to the dealer and have them check the VIN.

I'd also need to remove the tonnue cover and tailgate before loading the camper but at this price (and they may come down too) it may be well worth it -- the owner camped a LOT from what I can hear and claims he hauled it offroad when he probably shouldn't have (older couple by the sounds of it though).

I mostly wouldn't need to take it anywhere extreme but taking it to my property would be a rough road to test it on.

I suppose I could buy it and if it were too big could turn around and sell it during the height of camping season LOL
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Offline 4x4American

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Re: Sawmill camper?
« Reply #6 on: March 27, 2017, 04:46:20 PM »
If you get to a job thats gonna be tight, unhook the mill where you can, bring the camper in, unhook that and then go back after the mill.  A little bit of messing around, but still better than driving 2 hrs home
Boy, back in my day..

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Re: Sawmill camper?
« Reply #7 on: March 27, 2017, 04:54:23 PM »
My truck camper is a big one. I have a 2500 dodge with an 8' bed. Lynn is right about air bags. I ordered mine thru an auto store and installed them myself. Was easy to do. My camper weight is 2100 + lbs. Sleeps 4 with a full head.

Harbor Freight sells a duel hitch that one can extend out. Works great when I tow a boat with the camper.

Also, if you are looking at a truck camper, you will need tie down points. I paid around $400 for the ones I have. They are custom made for each make of truck that bolts to the main frame under. Easy to install too!

Of course, a full inspection for leaks is a must. Resealing the calking every 2-3 years is a very good thing to do.

Offline Kbeitz

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Re: Sawmill camper?
« Reply #8 on: March 27, 2017, 05:05:55 PM »
I started out big and I was not happy. One thing with the over hang it
make it hard to hook up a trailer. This is what I have now and I'm
happy with it.

 

 
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Offline Peter Drouin

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Re: Sawmill camper?
« Reply #9 on: March 27, 2017, 05:14:03 PM »
2 tons is too big.
2008 LT40 super,2008 edger, Cat telahandler, JD 5410 And can cut up to 45' long
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Offline WV Sawmiller

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Re: Sawmill camper?
« Reply #10 on: March 27, 2017, 05:18:16 PM »
Eric,

   I am assuming you will be able to mount the camper and still tow the mill to the site. If not I'd look at an aluminum or fiberglass shell then trick out the inside the best you can. The camper you describe sounds like it would be must better appointed and a lot more comfortable.

   Since this sounds like a legitimate business expense I'd certainly keep up with all expenses to purchase, repair and modify any such camper. Mileage to and from to look at and purchase the camper and repair parts should also be tax deductible.

   Good luck.
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Offline red

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Re: Sawmill camper?
« Reply #11 on: March 27, 2017, 05:43:57 PM »
You don't need a Camper you need an edger so you can finish in one day . Oh  and three more guys.
We have a lot of good boys and girls in harms way
lets all support them and their familys.

Offline terrifictimbersllc

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Re: Sawmill camper?
« Reply #12 on: March 27, 2017, 05:45:46 PM »
Sounds too heavy.  But its wouldn't be a $$$$$ experiment.

p.s. Red's onto something maybe KBeitz photos from other posts show  how to pack in the 3 guys no problem.
DJ Hoover, Terrific Timbers LLC,  Mystic CT   2001 WM LT40SHDD (42HP Kubota, Accuset2, FAO's, Lubemizer, debarker, hydraulics everywhere), Peterson WPF 10-30 with chain slabber. Logrite fetching arch, WM BMS250 sharpener/BMT250 setter.

Offline Magicman

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Re: Sawmill camper?
« Reply #13 on: March 27, 2017, 05:48:14 PM »
I am inclined to lean toward Peter's reply above.  Traveling and camping is one thing but hauling 4K and towing the sawmill into log landings/sites is pushing the envelope.
 

 
Top down for traveling.
 

 
Popped up.
   
I know that I do not have a 350, but the above is all of the weight that I would want to haul on my 250 with tow package to a work location in various stages of weather.  This unit loaded weighs 2K lbs.
Knothole Sawmill, LLC     '98 Wood-Mizer LT40SuperHydraulic   WM Million BF Club Member   WM Pro Sawyer Network

Never allow your "need" to make money to exceed your "desire" to provide quality service.....The Magicman

Offline red

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Re: Sawmill camper?
« Reply #14 on: March 27, 2017, 05:58:17 PM »
You need the bed of the truck for tools and equipment. Fuel cans grease gun etc etc. Never enough space . Maybe a big canvas wall rent and a generator.
We have a lot of good boys and girls in harms way
lets all support them and their familys.

Offline ozarkgem

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Re: Sawmill camper?
« Reply #15 on: March 27, 2017, 05:59:37 PM »
I am inclined to lean toward Peter's reply above.  Traveling and camping is one thing but hauling 4K and towing the sawmill into log landings/sites is pushing the envelope.
 

 (Image hidden from quote, click to view.)
Top down for traveling.
 

 (Image hidden from quote, click to view.)
Popped up.
   
I know that I do not have a 350, but the above is all of the weight that I would want to haul on my 250 with tow package to a work location in various stages of weather.  This unit loaded weighs 2K lbs.
Lynn
 What is your bed length and the camper length? Can you get to the hitch?
Mighty Mite Band Mill, Case Backhoe, 763 Bobcat, Ford 3400 w/FEL , 1962 Ford 4000, Int dump truck, Clark forklift, lots of trailers. Stihl 046 Magnum, 029 Stihl. complete machine shop to keep everything going.

Offline OlJarhead

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Re: Sawmill camper?
« Reply #16 on: March 27, 2017, 06:19:50 PM »
Looked at the load rating for my truck and it isn't what I thought it was :o it's actually only 3370#'s which after removing myself and gear etc means really 3000#'s

For some reason I thought the F350 was rated higher but maybe since it's a 4x4 super cab that's why it's lower?  I saw somewhere 4100#'s

Anyway, with my 'wet' limit around 3000#'s I think I need to pass on this camper.  I was just so tempted because of the price and it's shape (from talking to the owner).

Sure he hauled with an F250 but that doesn't mean I want to and I DO NEED to get into places with my mill.

So perhaps I'll stick with looking for an 8 foot camper.
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Re: Sawmill camper?
« Reply #17 on: March 27, 2017, 06:27:40 PM »
Be careful adding a hitch extension,  It will reduce your departure angle when going up any incline at a mill site. Plus you will have some sag that will add to it. After owning many slide in campers that I took offroad I learned that light weight bed length campers are best.
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Re: Sawmill camper?
« Reply #18 on: March 27, 2017, 06:38:49 PM »
Yes, for my model year 2001 my F350 crew cab payload was lower than Xtra cab which was lower than no cab, the no cab F350's are awesome payload.
DJ Hoover, Terrific Timbers LLC,  Mystic CT   2001 WM LT40SHDD (42HP Kubota, Accuset2, FAO's, Lubemizer, debarker, hydraulics everywhere), Peterson WPF 10-30 with chain slabber. Logrite fetching arch, WM BMS250 sharpener/BMT250 setter.

Offline Magicman

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Re: Sawmill camper?
« Reply #19 on: March 27, 2017, 06:59:47 PM »
Lynn
 What is your bed length and the camper length? Can you get to the hitch? 
Jim, 6' bed and 8' camper.  I don't have a picture of the hookup, but I have to use a receiver hitch extender in order to tow the trailer. 
 

 
As Seavee stated, you had better look ahead when off-roading.  Yes the camper was loaded and I was pulling the 12' trailer.
Knothole Sawmill, LLC     '98 Wood-Mizer LT40SuperHydraulic   WM Million BF Club Member   WM Pro Sawyer Network

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