While we had debated on staining the entire Truck Bed Sleeping Platform (it was built with cabinet grade red oak plywood afterall), we decided to use Duplicolor roll on truck bedliner* for a couple reasons: It provided more durable protection for the surface of the Sleeping Platform while hauling stuff around when we’re not truck camping, It is easily repairable - you literally just brush it on, It was WAY easier than staining and sealing that much surface area. After triple checking all of that math, we then mounted the drawer slides to the drawer supports as shown in the above photo. It works … The side and back walls of the drawer were cut and attached on top of the Drawer Base with vertical Kreg Jig joints in a toenail fashion as shown in the above diagram and photo below. This is the width between the Drawer Supports (minus ¼” for clearance) x the height of the Drawer Supports (minus ⅛” for clearance). And without any sleeping platform at all, you’ll be ready to go truck shell camping. Sale. Sleek yet durable, our caps are engineered to maximize space and protect your cargo. This also left 18 ¾” between the center drawer support and the passenger-side drawer support, which meant that Drawer#2 would have 15 ¾” of inside width after accounting for ¾” for each drawer slide and each drawer wall being ¾” thick plywood (again, a total of 3”). Somewhere to store dirty gear, shoes, etc. We decided to place a ¾” plywood Platform Base on the bed of the truck to provide a nice level foundation to build the platform on, and by dividing the Platform Base into 3 sections it makes it easier to fit into the bed (and remove if needed) with the camper shell still on. A 7 ¾” long 2”x1” piece of oak left over from cutting the Support Width Additions was attached to the underside of this section vertically using a couple Kreg Jig joints. This allows enough width for the cover sections to rest on securely without the need to screw them down, enabling us to easily and quickly remove the entire platform cover to access electrical or make repairs if needed. A truck camping setup that you can easily take in and out. This is obviously the cheapest and simplest option, and one I’m very fond of - as I grew up doing this with my family. Base Price: $10,500. Dry Weight: 340 pounds. We used a speed square to ensure all the supports stayed as close as possible to 90 degree angles from the base and the 48” EXACT square to make sure the supports were straight from front to back. Each of the four Platform Cover Sections and the hatch lids were removed and bedlined separately, and the drawer faces, rear-facing surfaces of the supports, and platform base were done at the same time. And if the prospect of building your own truck bed sleeping platform seems completely overwhelming, know that we felt exactly the same way - having literally no prior experience with design or carpentry. Expand your horizons — and your truck bed — with a LEER cab-high cap. Because we are for all intents and purposes complete carpentry noobs, throughout this guide we’ll make references to the below non-technical terms in order to help clarify parts of the assembly process. This may also, depending on build design, make the truck shell camping platform slightly more difficult to remove when needed, and is a good bit heavier than the previously discussed PVC truck bed platform option. Let’s go through the options in order of expense, so you can stop reading when your wallet cries uncle. Cut a sheet of 1/2″ plywood to fit. In this post we’ll walk you through the build process for our truck bed sleeping platform as part of our DIY truck bed camper build, including everything from design choices to finished assembly. Though this truck shell camping platform sacrifices some headroom compared to other build methods, we were able to maximize headroom by making sure the platform was built to rest just at wheel-well height and as low as possible. UPDATE: We ended up going with a set of these stainless drawer handles* and they work great! Outfitters Treehouse. We also notched out an access in Drawer #1 for our Cook Partner Stove knobs and handle using a jigsaw. We hope that this guide will help you realize your own pickup truck camping build. Though we were inspired by many of the modular truck bed sleeping platforms that utilized a mixture of wood sleeping platform build and storage bins, we wanted something more organized and built in. Section #3 was cut to provide easy access to the rear driver-side storage area and wheel-well. However, this is not an ideal solution for long-term travel, overlanding, or extended truck canopy camping trips. Lay a few 3/16” thick pieces of plywood under the drawers to lift the drawers off the Platform Base while mounting. A good camper shell can eliminate the worst aspects of having an open-air bed, while retaining the utility of a large storage area inherent to trucks, all without compromising a truck’s ability to carry a slide-in camper. We accomplished this by installing three Width Additions - 2”x1” oak boards - mounted flush with the top of three of the supports with horizontal Kreg Jig joints as shown in the diagram below. Drawer #1 Face cut @ 15 ¾” wide x 6 ⅞” tall, Drawer #2 Face cut @ 18 ½” wide x 6 ⅞” tall. I suggest budgeting $1,500. Unpack the platform and unload it section by section. And things get disorganized FAST! From your grandma’s backyard, to RV campsites, to the unexplored forests in your region. Gather Materials and Tools. We needed 16” to account for each drawer slide needing ¾” of space to mount and each drawer wall being ¾” thick plywood (total of 3”). This means we may receive a small commission, at no additional cost to you, if you make a purchase through a link. You simply go to your local hardware store and pull the 2” PVC pipe and fittings you need, cut, and assemble. 4 - 4ftx8ft cabinet grade 3/4in. There’s a LOT of info in this post, just take it slow - You can do it! But all you need is a little time, patience, and the right tools and you can do just about anything. By using cabinet grade plywood for the construction of a truck bed sleeping platform, you’ll be able to completely customize the build, strength, and storage options. It’s essential to keeping you comfortable and organized, it acts as your kitchen when you’re hungry, your living room when the weather is crummy, and your bedroom when you come back to camp … This left us with 13” of interior width in Drawer#1 to house our stove! If you like to keep your pickup truck bed super clean, or you’re trying to avoid … Best Value. So for about $700-$1000 (including the camper shell) you can have a great camping rig that you can be proud of. This U.S. military veteran … Eventually we were able to create a design to integrate ALL these things into our truck camping build. Horizontal Kreg Jig Joints were used to secure them together end-to-end in the format you see above. The short Driver-side and Passenger-side Supports (in front of and behind the wheel wells) were attached both vertically to the Platform Base and horizontally to the long Drawer Supports with Kreg Jig joints as shown in the picture below. Despite our strong desire to play an adult version of K’nex in the back of our truck, this just wasn’t the option for us. Alternatively, in our latest sleeping platform build - optimized for either solo truck camping or a diy truck camper build using one of the latest wedge campers - we combined a mix of fixed drawer storage and modular storage to build a very versatile truck camping sleeping platform setup with an overall lower weight. * These are general guidelines to use when matching a Lance camper to your truck. Our mid/high-rise caps are with you for the long haul and large haul. You can build something as simple as a frame using 2x4s with a piece of ½” to ¾” plywood over the frame to create a basic truck shell camping platform that provides a space beneath for storage bins, like the above example built by jhydro. Each choice is made based on vehicle choice, budget and living/lifestyle needs of the traveler. It took a bit of research in camper forums to hit on the right blend of simple and stable. Everything was left to cure per the manufacturer’s recommendations, and then reassembled. Yay math! By accessing or using this site you are indicating your consent to and agreement with the: Privacy Policy | Terms of Use | Affiliate Disclosure, Powered by a Toyota 22R | ©2019, takethetruck unless otherwise noted. Although these sleeping platform builds are a bit more expensive than the other truck shell camping platform methods, as well as more technical to build, you should know that we had virtually zero carpentry experience going into our first build. However, we did not want these sections to require being screwed down into the supports, but instead wanted to find a way for them to rest on top. And as you can see on the right, a 4”x5” hole was cut from the rear Passenger-side support to allow for longer items (like my Tenkara fly rod!) As we like to say at TCM, “If it doesn’t demount, it doesn’t count”. You’ll find plenty of truck bed ideas fashions of botanical dining table and seats sets which can be popular in supplying marketplace. The driver side we left open because of a plan we will get to shortly. This is the second cheapest option for building a truck bed sleeping platform, depending on how you build it. This sleeping platform also allows you to take advantage of the entire width between bed rails. See our full disclosure.). to be stored alongside the passenger-side wheel well. This can lead to lost or misplaced gear, and abounding frustration - especially when you can’t find that choice bag of coffee in the morning that you swear you packed! Vertical Kreg Jig Joint - when a Kreg Jig Joint is used to secure something vertically (i.e., up and down, perpendicular to the ground), Horizontal Kreg Jig Joint - when a Kreg Jig Joint is used to secure something horizontally (i.e., side-to-side, parallel to the ground), Toenail - this refers to alternating the Kreg Jig joints from one side of a board to the other so that the screws enter at opposing angles. I am not going to knock any one specific set up because they all have their advantages and disadvantages. Snap! Or if you’re not entirely sure which sleeping platform option may be the best for your build, head on over to our post on choosing a truck bed sleeping platform. Which allows enough room to sleep a family of 3 fairly comfortably. BONUS: If you’re a Toyota Pickup or even Tacoma owner these measurements should be very close to your own because Toyota didn’t change the 6ft bed layouts all that much over the years. For weekend camping trips and short-term travel this is a great truck bed camping solution since you can just as easily pull everything right back out and go about your daily life, while still being able to use your truck like a truck. From one ¾” thick 4x8 plywood board we cut: 3 Long Drawer Supports cut @ 7” tall x 71” long, 3 Short Driver-side supports cut @ 7” tall x 11” long, 2 Short Passenger-side supports cut @ 7” tall x 13 ½” long. Though a PVC sleeping platform like the one above does require the use of storage bins to store and organize your gear, this does allow you to store your gear under the platform in a slightly more organized fashion while truck shell camping. For the sleeping platform to be complete you will need two outer boxes that go over your truck’s wheel wells. This will ensure your cuts are nice and square which will help the supports stay square when joining.**. So, I designed a storage unit of my … You can spend less than a PVC sleeping platform build if you scrounge scrap materials from construction sites, or the scrap bins at your local lumber yard, or use materials you already have lying around. **TIP: check your table saw or circular saw blade to make sure that the blade is set at a true 90 degrees. Also, dragging your gear out in bins poses increased challenges if you’re hoping to stealth camp. For many overlanders, there are three general choices: a camper (ie: a slide in truck bed camper), a roof top tent, or a sleeping platform either in an SUV or pickup truck with a cap. I searched for pre-made options and then searched for homemade options but found nothing to fit my particular needs. Optional but recommended is taking the two sections of p-cord from the middle and tying them into a knot so the hatches don't open up accidentally if … The Camperbox capitalizes on the convenience of sleeping in your vehicle with a small, packable conversion kit for a back-of-the-car bed. COMMERCIAL. Feb 25, 2017 - Like it says on the tin. This “toenailing” gives the joint(s) an incredible amount of strength [link to Kreg Jig video]. Pin it! So when we decided to turn our 84 Toyota Pickup into the ultimate DIY truck shell camping adventure mobile, we knew we had to put a lot of thought into what we wanted out of our sleeping platform. But cost will increase when you begin buying plywood and integrating built in storage. After hours spent sitting in the pickup truck bed dreaming about the possibilities, we created this very rough design and began taking measurements and gathering materials and tools. Section #4 serves as a removable cover for our dirty-shoe/gear storage. Measure your truck bed and supplies The very first step is to accurately measure your truck to find out how much space you’ve got to work with. You also need to determine the amount of space that is available to you at the back of your truck. We drop cut a 9”x9” hatch into Sections #1 & #2 to access the storage spaces in front of the wheel wells. No hammering necessary. You can literally just throw an air mattress, a sleeping bag, and some plastic storage containers* filled with gear in the bed of your truck, like our friend at #opt4scenic. The first step in setting up your sleeping platform is taking measurements of the truck bed. Then the Side Walls and Back Walls were attached to one another with Horizontal Kreg Jig joints. The common feature is the ability to demount the camper from the truck. For our build we wanted the top of the platform to be level with (or to basically rest on top of) the 8” tall wheel wells to maximize headroom. Truck shell camping is an incredible way to travel and experience the outdoors; we hope this guide has helped you choose the best truck bed sleeping platform design for your own truck camping setup or overlanding build. This will be by far your largest expense, but it’s worth it—these are the walls to your house. Selecting the right truck bed sleeping platform for your truck camping setup is a tough process - there are literally thousands of inspiring and unique builds out there! See more ideas about truck camping, camping, truck camper. The platform will allow you to store your camping supplies underneath your bed and eliminate the need to set up a tent. Feb 20, 2020 - Explore John Pappas's board "Truck Bed Ideas" on Pinterest. Or you can build a more flexible modular setup with built-in storage along the bed rails and an easily removable platform that spans the distance between the built-ins, like Ryan from desktodirtbag did. Most trucks feature a pre-installed tailgate table that can be used as a cooking … And if you have any questions please hit us up in the comments section, or via email - we’d love to help you make your truck bed sleeping platform build a success! When in platform mode, your storage bins can easily slide underneath. Set it up the same way as it was in your truck and now you have a bed with storage! Determining your budget is a pivotal part of deciding which sleeping platform will be right for your truck shell camping adventures. We needed something more substantial, and because of our dual battery setup plans we needed fixed storage options for our equipment. This is a simple, no-fluff design. You can expect to find an east-west facing bed that can accommodate most people, The bed’s dimensions are 60×80 which is very generous for a camper bed. Portable Camping Power Part 3: Selecting a Camping Power Supply, How to Choose a Truck Canopy for Truck Shell Camping, Choosing the Best SUV or Truck Bed Mattress [Memory Foam vs Air Mattress vs Sleeping Pad], How to Choose The Best Dual Battery Setup, How to Install a Vent Fan in Your Truck Camper. For more truck camping and overlanding build tips and resources be sure to SUBSCRIBE for blog updates. Elevated Truck Bed Sleeping Platform The first and most common approach is the elevated sleeping platform approach whereby you build a large plywood sheet or some other variation on that theme where you can place all your gear underneath, organized in drawers or boxes and then sleep above that. With the freedom they give you of setting up campsite anywhere your pickup truck can go. The Sleeping Platform Cover consists of 4 sections. A Note About Security: For both personal safety and peace of mind, make sure your truck bed camping build-out is secure.Both your tailgate and the canopy should have locks, but make sure they’re up to snuff. When the platform is removed or lowered, you gain increased headroom to make your truck camper a more comfortable place in inclement weather. But the great thing about truck camping is that there is virtually no barrier to entry (see our complete guide on how to get started truck camping here). Note that they’re mounted 1” in from the end of the drawer supports. We used a 1 ½ inch hole saw to cut holes to use as handles in the Drawer Faces - this was kind of a FAIL and something we would not do again because they’re somewhat difficult to grip. Sections #1, 2 and 3 were cut from one ¾” thick 4x8 sheet of plywood. Check Latest Price. The joint lowest priced tent on the list (which is a pretty … Utilize 15% more space than a cab-high model and save on fuel with stunning aerodynamics. This is a great option when weight is a concern, because, unlike wooden truck bed sleeping platforms, PVC is very light. These serve to support Platform Cover Sections # 1 and 3 (discussed below). The third and most recent addition to the AT Overland truck topper lineup is the … If you’re interested in building a similar full width platform of your own, check out our detailed post - DIY Truck Bed Camper: Build the Ultimate Sleeping Platform. Pro tip: the width near the cab and the width near the tailgate might be slightly different. You can use this guide to help select which sleeping platform design is right for your diy truck camper build, and then customize it to best fit your own truck camping needs. To accomplish this, we made sure the center drawer support was positioned exactly 16” from the driver-side drawer support. Having a camper in the back of your truck provides you the gas mileage of tent camping with some of the organization of hauling a trailer and you won't get as wet when it rains. Additionally, a camper shell and truck bed lock are essential for keeping people from stealing your items. Storage for long items - namely my Tenkara fly rod and our camp chairs, Drawer storage for all our kitchen, camping gear, and clothing that would make everything easily accessible, Enough headroom to still be able to sit up comfortably, **we ended up finding exterior solutions for these. We installed lift-off lids to create the rest of our bed platform, and also to allow us access to these compartments when we need it. Contact Us, Sleeping Platform Build Diagrams Printable, truck camping, interior, gear, camp kitchen, how to. As you’ll see in the next section below - “Making The Truck Bed Sleeping Platform Cover” - we designed the Platform Cover to be four separate pieces of plywood that can easily be removed independently of each other. Thank you for your interest in our site! When removed, this also provides a place for us to sit upright inside with our feet down. The patented design comes with Heavy Duty Cloth Material for superior puncture resistance with cutouts on each side that allow the mattress to fit around & over the wheel wells, creating a sleep area that utilizes the entire truck bed. Cost: Under $50 (mainly for the plastic storage bins). If you’re not yet sure if pickup truck camping is right for you, check out our post on how we became a truck camping family for some inspiration, or head over to this post - Everything You Need to Know About Truck Bed Camping - to see practical info on how to get started. This is to leave room for our drawer faces to close flush in between the supports (see the below diagram to see how the drawer faces sit inside the drawer supports when closed). In the photos below you can see the two Width Additions mounted flush with the top of the 7” tall Drawer Supports. TIP: By setting the jigsaw to a 45 degree cutting angle while making the hatch cut out, it creates a nice beveled lip and a very simple lid. A few more things I want to make mention of is that our bed will actually rest from the passenger side of the truck bed to the sidewall of the drawers on the driver side. By accessing or using this site you are indicating your consent to and agreement with the: Privacy Policy | Terms of Use | Affiliate Disclosure, Powered by a Toyota 22R | ©2019, takethetruck unless otherwise noted. Guide Gear Truck Tent. The drawers were mounted virtually flush with the end of the drawer slides, as you can see in the below photos. Next, you need to buy all the tools and materials that you will require for … If you want to improve your security, you can devise a latching system using a hasp lock to provide an additional layer of security. I struggled with this problem through the course of owning a few different trucks. All-in our truck bed sleeping platform took about 3 long days to build. The truck shell camping platform is the foundation of any DIY pickup truck camping build. If a printable PDF of all the diagrams found below would help you in your build, you can print them at the bottom of the post. plywood boards - we used red oak (not the lightest option), 1 - 500 piece box of 1 ¼ inch Kreg Jig screws*, 2 Sets - 60” long 500lb rated drawer slides * (for a total of 4 separate slides), 1 - box #8 1/2 inch self-tapping screws (for attaching the drawer slides), 1 - box #10 1/2 inch self-tapping screws (also for attaching the drawer slides), This was a game changer for executing our truck bed sleeping platform build and drawer system - this is a MUST HAVE tool if you’re carpentry noobs like us, Speed Square* and 48” T-Square* (great for making nice square cuts on long pieces of plywood). Want to come back to this post later? >>>>CLICK HERE TO DOWNLOAD YOUR FREE PRINTABLE<<<<, Fridge Slide: A DIY Alternative for Truck or Vehicle Camping, How to Choose The Best Dual Battery Setup, A Guide to Sleeping Platforms for Truck Shell Camping, The Best Memory Foam Truck Bed Mattress for Truck, Van, or SUV Camping, Overland Shower - A DIY Camping Shower and Water Container. In our first sleeping platform build we used long drawer slides and custom built-in storage to house all of our gear and equipment in a fixed and organized fashion in a full-width truck bed sleeping platform. $1,500: Truck Bed Cap. This space houses our 12v distribution fuse block, Inergy Kodiak Solar Generator, and aluminum propane tank. When you purchase Truck bed camping platform, most likely the first factor set the brain to truck bed ideas purchase the sets is its own fashions then a price . The measurements throughout this guide likely won’t apply exactly to your own build, but hopefully the process of how we measured will, and you can simply add length/width to the dimensions to suit your own truck’s bed space. A Built In Rechargeable Pump inflates & deflates AirBedz at the flip of a switch. This ensures clearance from the Platform Base, allowing the drawers to slide smoothly once fully installed. You will also be supplied with a 30-gallon freshwater tank and fully molded integrated work surfaces for your convenience. We did not bedline any unexposed surfaces. Couple slats, a plywood platform, and voila: storage below, with sleeping area above. This is definitely the most common option for creating a truck bed sleeping platform, and can provide a good mix of sleeping and storage solutions while truck shell camping. Save a pin for later if you want to come back to this post! It’s also very easy to deconstruct and remove when not needed. Notice that the 5” tall Drawer Walls slide underneath them with plenty of clearance. DIY Truck Camping Sleeping Platform Measure the length of your truck and the width of your bed between the vertical side bins. So in this post we’ll walk you through the most common approaches to building a truck bed sleeping platform, while weighing some of the pros and cons of each. The truck shell camping platform is the foundation of any DIY pickup truck camping build. Truck shell camping is an incredible way to travel and experience the outdoors; we hope this guide has helped you choose the best truck bed sleeping platform design for your own truck camping setup or overlanding build. and its capacities for carrying and /or towing - how much optional equipment is added to the truck camper - what you tow - and the weight of passengers and all other items you carry in your truck and camper.