Remember trucks with big ol' camper shells that were huge and hideous? Even though they didn't look so nice rolling down the highway or sitting in a driveway, they served their purpose for camping. At the time, they were first sold to the public; they were the state-of-the-art means of mobile living. You could start out with your affordable truck and basically turn it into a mini recreational vehicle.
The folks at TopUp Camper liked the concept of your basic camper shell but felt that there was major room for improvement. Some giant disadvantages of a traditional camper shell are it's size and weight. They are also bulky and about as aerodynamic as a brick, so fuel economy takes a nosedive any time you drive with one on your bed. As prices at the pump keep rising, every little bit of aerodynamic gain can help save money.
CustomRV Incorporated of Anaheim,...
CustomRV Incorporated of Anaheim, California, was our stop, as they are pros at selling and installing these campers. A big box arrived fresh when the men in brown dropped it off. We cracked open the crate to discover the big and beefy TopUp tonneau cover. When installed and dropped down it fits the bed nice and tight.
The newer design takes all the advantages of the camper and improves on everything that made it uncool. The biggest downfall is that in order for many people to be able to sleep in a camper shell, it needs to be big. But, when it's not in use, it is pretty much a waste of space. Since there's just so much room inside of a pickup bed, the idea was to use this room to compact everything when not in use.
The solution was to use a simple tonneau cover to enclose everything and to have it rise straight up for maximum headroom. To start, a strong and durable fiberglass lid was designed. To have it raise vertically, a set of scissor-type tracks are employed and deliver 6-1/2 feet of lift for the tonneau cover. For ease when lifting, a set of hydraulic cylinders were added into the mix to move the tracks upward without effort.
Once the tonneau is up, it acts like a frame for the structure of the camper. From there, two boards are attached to the sides that work as platforms. Then, waterproof vinyl covers stick on with the use of hook-and-loop tape to completely close off the pop-top camper with 104 square feet of living space. Now, you can have a camper without having a big structure over your vehicle all the time.
All the benefits are kept as the new design still allows you to hide everything when not in use. And if the camper isn't your thing, the vertical lifting tonneau cover can be purchased separately. Alone, it will give you shade or rain cover and still function as a regular lid. The hydraulic-lifting tonneau cover can also be raised to accommodate bulky loads. Also, because it's sturdy, you can drive with it in the up position. It is recommended that you do this with caution. Either way you look at it, the design is just great for anyone who likes to spend time outdoors and needs a tonneau cover for their truck.