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Discussion Starter #1
It seems that the campers that fit Tacomas and Colorados and such should now also fit the Ridgeline. One of the things people do to improve stability though is to attach the camper to the frame not the body. That isn't happening on the ridgeline.

Anyone have thoughts on how the new ridgeline would handle a camper vs its mid-sized brethren?
 

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Discussion Starter #3
At this point I am not so concerned about how to tie it down. I am concerned how 1100 pounds would ride on the truck.
 

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At this point I am not so concerned about how to tie it down. I am concerned how 1100 pounds would ride on the truck.
I would not try it. The weight is not low in the bed and the weight is also sitting on plastic. And they are small as heck! Get a trailer.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
By "weight is not low in the bed" you mean because the bed it higher in the Ridgeline? That is a good point. A camper riding higher would raise the center of gravity of the camper/truck vehicle. That wouldn't be good.

I don't understand the comment about riding on plastic.

A trailer wouldn't work for my needs. I may consider a Colorado instead, but it would seem odd to move to a truck with an even lower payload capacity, but I know people are using campers on them.
 

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By "weight is not low in the bed" you mean because the bed it higher in the Ridgeline? That is a good point. A camper riding higher would raise the center of gravity of the camper/truck vehicle. That wouldn't be good.

I don't understand the comment about riding on plastic.

A trailer wouldn't work for my needs. I may consider a Colorado instead, but it would seem odd to move to a truck with an even lower payload capacity, but I know people are using campers on them.
Yes.

I should have said sitting on plastic. The bed is all plastic and if the camper is not formed to the dimensions and contours of the bed, it will cause premature wear and even possible cracking. The only way would be if the camper was just a solid shell offering shelter and you made due without all the typical camper stuff, like a sink and stove. It would be much lighter.
Why would a camper work for you? Storage? I know that problem well...
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Oh this is interesting. So when Honda says that the payload is almost 1600 pounds, 1585 or whatever, they don't mean the bed. The bed can only hold some small portion of that? I couldn't go to Home Depot and pick up 1,000 pounds of bricks without damaging the plastic bed (I didn't know it was plastic by the way). Or, that Honda's video of a loader dumping river rocks into the bed is misleading, that the bed is actually being damaged. Or, are you saying that it can hold the weight, but only for a limited time, that the clock starts ticking when you put it in there and if you don't unload it soon the bed starts distorting and cracking?

Either way that is important information to know before choosing a truck, even if I don't end up doing a camper.

The issue with a trailer is two fold. One towing in snow is problematic and the other is that where I will be taking it I can only park one vehicle not two.
 

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I dont think the composite bed would be an issue. I think you will have to wait untill someone manufactures one specifically for the Ridgelines. Mostly because the bed width and height are different from other trucks. Trying to make one fit from tundra or tacoma wouldn't work because the height from bed to cab would be different leaving to much of a gap between camper and top of the cab and also not wide enough to fit snug . You would probably also be limited to a pop up type camper because of weight. Someone once tried to make them for G1, I dont think they made many of them. check out pic.
If we are lucky someone will try to manufacture one specifically for Ridgeline since the bed is now more conventional no weird angles to work with now.
 

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Which brand of camper is that pictured, rjsaenz?

I see you are in Denver...I've had a lot of trucks in my young 48 years. And I've eyed the Outfitter's and Hallmarks for years, but never have purchased. A simple lil' camper would be cool!
 

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Oh this is interesting. So when Honda says that the payload is almost 1600 pounds, 1585 or whatever, they don't mean the bed. The bed can only hold some small portion of that? I couldn't go to Home Depot and pick up 1,000 pounds of bricks without damaging the plastic bed (I didn't know it was plastic by the way). Or, that Honda's video of a loader dumping river rocks into the bed is misleading, that the bed is actually being damaged. Or, are you saying that it can hold the weight, but only for a limited time, that the clock starts ticking when you put it in there and if you don't unload it soon the bed starts distorting and cracking?

Either way that is important information to know before choosing a truck, even if I don't end up doing a camper.

The issue with a trailer is two fold. One towing in snow is problematic and the other is that where I will be taking it I can only park one vehicle not two.
I sense your sarcasm.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
No sarcasm intended. I have paper knowledge of this truck, no practical knowledge. I read that it has a payload of 1500+ pounds so am assuming that it can handle a camper that Tacomas and Colorados are handling. If someone with practical knowledge comes along and says that the bed can't really handle that, I am going to take that seriously.

Campers aren't special made for individual trucks. If the bed is bigger I don't see that as an issue, in fact some people take the camper intended for the Tacoma/Colorado and put it in larger trucks like the Tundra (I am assuming when you mentioned the Tundra above your meant the Tacoma). I don't see an issue with the cabover being a little high over the roof. It isn't the most aesthetic but I don't care about that. The only issue would be if it causes a problem with the center of gravity, which it very well could.

The popup campers aren't quite as convenient, but if they are a better solution than yes, that might be the way to go, they aren't as warm either and I'll be using it in the snow. Also, I've been doing a lot of research and they really aren't much lighter. In fact, some are much heavier. The lightest I have found is 200 pounds lighter than a full camper. That 200 pounds could make a difference. The bigger difference might be that the popups have lower centers of gravity.

But, here is a popup in the snow:

 

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No sarcasm intended.
ok then look atthe very first moment of the video. Look how the camper is rocking around the bed of the truck. Those are different stresses than a pile of rocks, due to the shape of the camper and the height. You are also clamping it down which is increasing the effective weight on the bed. there might be 500lbs of force needed to secure the camper to the truck. Most likely more if t he camper is 1000lbs, it takes more to secure that amount of weight.
When it rocks side to side, most of the weight is transferred to one side of the bed, which is plastic. This is just my observations on the question you asked so take it for what it is.
 

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But isn't the bed on the new Taco also composite? Looking at the naked RL with bed removed in another thread, I would think that what matters most is how that composite bed is supported by the underlying unitized platform. This seems like a question that Honda could best answer. Regarding the high center of gravity created by adding a camper to the RL, that could definitely be a stability issue IMO. If I were considering a camper for the RL, I would want to know exactly what it weighed and then try to simulate that weight in the bed with a loaded pallet or something else of known weight so that I could see how much the suspension compressed. With most BOF trucks, I think you would have more options to beef up the suspension to better handle the camper weight than you would with an RL.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
I don't own a Ridgeline so I can't test weight in it. I am trying to decide what to buy. My priorities are:

* Everyday driver so car like comfort and ride
* Good MPG
* Seating for 5
* Weekend project hauling
* Ability to pull my trailer ~2500 pounds so not that much
* Ability to secure storage (locking cover and tailgate)
* AWD or 4WD for driving in snow
* Mobile crash pad for skiing weekends (hence the camper)

In all measures but two the Ridgeline is the clear winner. With aftermarket locks the secure storage part is taken care of too so it is head and shoulders above the competition in all respects except the camper. I am just trying to figure out if the camper part is an issue or not. At least right now the second place finisher in all the categories would be the Chevy Colorado. It can handle the camper so do I compromise and go with second in all the other areas to be able to do the camper? But, I'm still not clear the Ridgeline can't do the camper.

I am not sure if the camper in the video is the one for a five foot bed or the one for a six foot bed. The weights are 845 for the six foot bed and 795 for the five foot bed. The camper I really like weights 1285, but my second favorite is 1095, which is weird because it is larger. Well longer but narrower.

My favorite (1285 pounds so can't get it)
Travel Lite 625 Super Lite Truck Camper

My second choice (1095 pounds)
Travel Lite 690FD Truck Camper

The one from the video:

five foot (795 pounds)
SWIFT POP-UP (SHORTER 5.0' BED) - Four Wheel Campers | Low Profile, Light Weight, Pop-up Truck Campers

six foot (845 pounds)
FLEET POP-UP (REGULAR 6' BED) - Four Wheel Campers | Low Profile, Light Weight, Pop-up Truck Campers
 

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That is a great list BolivarS...new campers that I've never seen, but it has been awhile since I last looked (back when we had the 2011 Tundra Crew Max).

I used to look at the Outfitter RV Manufacturing but OutFitter's are NOT CHEAP...and hard to find used, too.

I do feel like the RL is the best truck we've ever had ('94 Suburban, not a truck, but 454 and 9.4MPG everywhere it went; '92 Ford F150 was great till it was costing $1000 a month in repairs; '97 Cummins felt so cheap to operate when Diesel was less than gas and 21 MPG back when Diesels actually got good MPGs...then the transmission went out at 34K Miles; 2000 Tundra good but no back seat; 2005 Tundra Double Cab 4 inches wider than previous Tundra's; 2011 Tundra CrewMax sold it to buy the '13 Tacoma thinking that the CrewMax was just too big and not easy to get things into (like how the Ford Super Duties are too big to load anything too) and improve MPGs (the MPGs was WRONG, as the Taco was not that much different).

Anyway, if a person got a canopy...that would eventually "lock" the bed. But for myself after having had so many rigs...I loved the www.SofTopper.com that we had on the Taco...most useful "canopy or tonneau cover) we've ever had. ;-) BUT it does NOT LOCK.

Another crazy thing...if I'm remembering correctly...is that I'm pretty sure the RL has a better payload than the 2011 Tundra CrewMax had. My friend at church, who was the Cummins & Viper Mechanic at Dodge always said that they underrate trucks mostly because of the Passenger Tires that they put on trucks now days...that and Lawyer Butt Coverage. ;-) So I used to put E Load Rated Michelin's on my trucks...but not this RL...guess I'd have to check what our new Michelin Defender LTX M/S if their load rating is any better than the "stock" Firestone's that come on the RL.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
I decided the ask the people who would know, the camper manufacturers. I used their contact links to ask if they have examined the new ridgeline and if their camper will work with it. My guess is that it is too new and they haven't tried it yet, but I'll see what they tell me.
 

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I decided the ask the people who would know, the camper manufacturers. I used their contact links to ask if they have examined the new ridgeline and if their camper will work with it. My guess is that it is too new and they haven't tried it yet, but I'll see what they tell me.
Yea I would agree...probably too new and so few to even get their hands on a RL. Plus, I'm just not sure how they would tie them down...like the Torklift frame mount spring loaded tiedowns are the best and the fastest (but don't know where those would attache on a RL)?

Bob Ward at OutFitters and Matt Ward of Hallmark (yes they are related) both were great to talk, too.

I think it will continue to be instant pop up Coleman Tent for us...at least for a while. ;-)
 

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Discussion Starter #20
The four wheel campers attach inside the bed. They put eyebolts in your bed and the camper has access doors on the inside. You put the camper on the bed, then reach through the access door to attach the camper to the eyebolt. It would be great if that would work with the existing Ridgeline tiedowns, though that might be wishful thinking.
 
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