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Thinking of buying a utility shell for a stealth/adventure vehicle camper.
I want to build a go anywhere stealth camper and hopefully use my paid off 2004 Tacoma as a base. It's been lifted with larger A/T tires installed. Next upgrade is a limited slip diff. I work in the oilfield so I have housing most of the time. I want this rig to be be a go anywhere ( within reason , no rock crawling or mud bogging) vehicle to fill in the blanks between jobs. Sometimes I'll be visiting/ staying with friends and family in TX/CA so it won't be full time.

I'm interested in this large fiberglass utility body, as it is roomy and light weight. I would do an opening boat hatch on the top and a sliding window in the front to meet up with the truck's rear cab window.

My concern is condensation, but with all of the people living in boats and fiberglass trailers, surely there is a solution to this problem?

Please let me know what you think, Will

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On a Ford Ranger with a 6' bed (like mine).
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My truck:
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I found there was lots of condensation with Propane, now when I put a big chunk of metal over the propane heater, it heated it up, dispersed the heat better and did some steady mass heating as in residual heating. I did notice a drop in the moisture when I was using the metal, so assuming it is heating up and the water in the air is causing dissipation of moisture on it? 
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Telcobilly, the little molded fiberglass Scamp trailers use a layer of something similar to Reflectix glued to the walls and ceiling with a fuzzy marine fabric (that won't mildew) over it for insulation and to prevent condensation. 

Would a marine fabric liner work for you?

That's the first time I've seen those shells.  I'm intrigued by all the possibilities they present.
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Sunny, so am I. It's 75" long at the bed level and 110"'from the front of the overhang to the back. I could do a deck of 75" x 50" at the bed rail level. There is 67" headroom. It is very appealing due to the fact I could continue to use my truck, stealth would be good with no street visible windows, making it look like a work truck. I have a lot of flexibility in configuring it for my occasional use. When I'm housed at rigs, it would be secure storage, when I'm on a road trip, it would be my hotel. I wouldn't have to purchase a less economical van of questionable mechanical condition plus having two vehicles to deal with.

I have no doubt of my ability to live in it, as I spent a year trucking in a flat top Freightliner with less standup room than this unit.
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The following 1 user says Thank You to Telcobilly for this post:
Langleyc05 (12-12-2015)


Could you post a link to the manufacturer/dealer of those fiberglass shells? I'm wondering if they make a version for a longer bed?

DW and I are looking for truck campers now, and if I could find the proper bare shell, would love a DIY project.

We just sold our camper van and are going cold turkey...

Speaking of truck campers, could you find a small used TC? Might be less expensive in long run...

"It's always darkest just before lightning scares the crap out of you."
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Telcobilly, That utility body looks really good... could you share who makes/sells them? Is it a Tufport? Thanx!

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Johney Canuck did a post on some different types of these shells a while back
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Hey Seraphim, I remember posting a picture of a very similar slide in a loooonnnngg time ago. It was on a 8' box F250, and had an air conditioner and generator built in and was used as a mobile workspace for splicing fiber optic cables. I even remember taking a picture of the mfg plate and posting it.
I still have them , so here they are-
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I hope they come out better on a computer screen than they do on my phone.

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That is a sweet looking shell!
Had a Tacoma with a homebuilt shell b4 a dui totaled it....(Heavy Sigh) Loved it.
Pretty sure some venting would be in order, spray foam insulation would also help with condensation, especially in cooler weather.

"I like long walks, especially when they are taken by people who annoy me"
-Fred Allen-
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Thanks Karl.
Here's my thought process as I study the posts out here in the forums. I will probably do 2 years out here in the oilfields and WON'T commit to any kind of housing, as it's provided out here. I want to build an adventure/ stealth camper and while I have the time and housing, I can purchase the body and use it as storage during the conversion process.
First thing will be a large, watertight boat hatch and front pass through window. I want to add a cot/futon or whatever that can be sat on or slept on and able to be folded up to the side when unneeded. The shell will be insulated and I'll buy a portable generator. I will keep clothes/food in the top and on the floor in containers.

I want to make it like a portable self contained survival igloo that can be moved from truck to truck . My truck gets 20-25 mpg now which I know will drop. If at some time I want a more capable truck, I'll stay with the mid sized trucks and maybe go 4x4 next time. I get a $675 pm truck allowance now.
Best case is to save my $ and make my existing , paid off truck work for as long as possible while saving a fund for repairs/ newer 4x4 mid size truck.

This will be my home in the future, but for now, I have the luxury of housing to allow me to purchase every thing I need to do it right.

BTW, the shell is a Durashell 165 available from Fleetwest.
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