Things that make our Truck Camper living more enjoyable Part 1

Living full time in a small space can be a challenge so the ‘brains’ of the operation is always thinking about how to make our space more useable.  Glenn thinks so creatively so I wanted to highlight some of the most wonderful adaptations that he has come up with now that they’ve been ‘road tested’ for the past eight months as we’ve lived full time in our camper.

Some of the things we’ve bought to make our life better (some of these link to our Amazon Associates account so thank you if you use them):

A folding, telescoping ladder from Tele-Steps.

TeleSteps make it easy to access the roof

Folding ladder makes it easy to access the roof

This  7 foot ladder from Tele-Steps is a workhorse — we use it to get to our storage bag on top, washing and waxing the camper, reaching branches to prune them if they are too low, and doing a quick bug removal on the front.  It only weighs 23# and folds up to about 3 1/2 x 4 1/2 square inches and is rated for up to 250 lbs as a Type 1 ladder.

telesteps ladder

Telesteps ladder folded up

We strap it next to the ladder on the back of the camper and it rests on the bumper.  It rides very stable and doesn’t take up any extra room.

TeleSteps Ladder partially unfolded

TeleSteps Ladder partially unfolded






Collapsible Vinyl Bucket

Having a bucket is super handy.  Handy for soap and water to clean the camper, to soak particularly yucky clothes, or even transport fish from the boat to a cleaning station.  We have no room for a conventional one so went the way of a collapsible model.  We originally bought a fold up canvas model from Camping World, but it had metal rods inside the bucket to stiffened it up and those rods starting rusting with some of our uses so we were on the hunt for a different one.

This collapsible vinyl bucket is perfect.  It doesn’t hold smells and is easy to clean out.  You would think it wouldn’t be sturdy to transport and stay upright holding water, but it works great.  This one on Amazon is similar to ours since we found ours at the Tampa RV show.  It holds 2 1/2 gallons and folds down to about 3 inches tall and fits perfectly on one of our shelves.

                    Collapsible Camping Utility Bucket


LED Motion Sensor Bathroom Nightlight

Motion Sensor Light

Motion Sensor Light

We have a wet bath, making it hard to have any light switches in the bathroom.  However in the middle of the night, it helps to have a easy-to-turn-on light.  We found this Hampton Bay LED Motion Light for our bathroom from Home Depot.  It is about 4 1/2 x 4 1/2 inches and less than an inch deep so we used velcro to secure it under our medicine cabinet.  It is not visible under the cabinet and comes on when you step inside the bathroom – then goes off after 30 seconds.  Works like a charm and for $15 it is a winner.


Aeropress Coffee and Espresso Maker

Aerobie AeroPress Coffee/Espresso Maker

Aeropress Coffee and Espresso Maker

Since our goal is to dry camp or boondock as much as possible, we needed a solution for Glenn’s coffee in the morning without using a coffee maker.  He tried coffee bags, instant coffee, and a french press.  Then he read on Lance Owners of America forums about the Aeropress Coffee and Espresso Maker.  This small, highly functional coffee maker takes no water to clean up and the coffee grounds compress to a small ‘hockey puck’ size to easily throw away.  He can make one large cup (16 oz) in about two minutes after he gets the water boiling.  No grounds get into the brew and he loves the convenience.

RV Stabilizer

RV Stabilizer

Once we take the camper off the truck, we lower it down as far as possible.  Even with a lower center of gravity, we were getting some ‘wiggling and shaking’ when we moved around inside the camper.  We bought this lightweight RV Stabilizer from Camping World thinking that it wouldn’t work for a truck camper.  Boy were we surprised.  It really makes a BIG difference in making the camper feel more stable front-to-back and left-to-right.  This $40 purchase is fast to set up and doesn’t take much room to store in the back seat of the truck.

I’ll post a part II and part III soon with other things that make our life better.  Of course, with our lifestyle, I’m not sure it can get too much better:)





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6 Responses to Things that make our Truck Camper living more enjoyable Part 1

  1. David Carter says:

    My wife and I are starting the process of unloading all of our stuff, selling the house and going full time for as long as possible. We really like the idea of a truck camper and love the Host Mammoth which is very big. We are just not sure it is large enough for long term use. I like the idea of being able to boon dock and go anywhere but am concerned about the size. Any thoughts / suggestions?
    Many thanks

    • gconthemove says:

      We’ve looked at the Host, Chalet, and Eagle Cap since they all had the footrests. They are heavy (like ours). We were at 14,400 in our prior Lance 1010. After picking our new unit up this week we went to the CAT scale and without all our clothes, porta bote, bikes and Thule we are already at 14,500. Will see how much it weighs after we put everything in/on it.

      To us the flexibility of the truck camper is worth it. Worth a little less room and less stuff. I listen to enough of our friends that have to be so careful where they visit and camp because of their larger rigs. For two years we have lived just fine in our Truck Camper and have several more years planned.

      You might want to buy used and try it for a year or two. Then if you feel like it is ‘good’, buy your dream truck camper.

      • David Carter says:

        Thank you very much for your thoughtful answer and advice. I greatly appreciate it. I stopped by an RV dealer today to look at a Lance TT and before I knew it he was steering me to a 39 foot 5th wheeler. Very nice inside but it was HUGE! It would be hard to get into a lot of places and boondock in as well. Fortunately my wife and I have a very good marriage and share the same values in wanting a smaller space. I like your idea of buying a good used one and trying it out! Hope to see you on the road one day. Travel safe and enjoy !! Many thanks

        • gconthemove says:

          David – keep in touch – it is nice to have contact to link up with while on the road. Good luck with your decision. We were backpackers and tent campers first so the transition into the TC was easy for us. Also, we’ve also heard that TC people have better relationships than most couples and spend more time outside. From what Ive seen in the past two years it seems to be true:)

  2. Looking forward to part 2 and 3. I was especially interested in the folding ladder.

    • gconthemove says:

      Mark – after I started writing this post, we ended up with enough items for three ‘fav’ lists! We do love the ladder – it especially helps to reach the nose of the truck camper to scrub the bugs off.

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