Cabover Campers Trailers

Cabover campers trailer may be a low cost solution for you...

Cabover campers have almost as long history as the whole RV industry.

The cab-over concept is a simplest solution offering inexpensive camping opportunities to owners of pick-up trucks.

Since long pick-up trucks are a popular option not only for small family businesses but also for many suburban homeowners.

No wonder that the idea of using the pick-up truck rear cargo area (bed) for something else than just transporting “stuff” (as originally designed for) – in this case for recreation (RV-ing) quickly gained traction and became popular among pick-up truck owners.

The name cabover camper (or as originally called “camper-over-cab”) comes from the shape of the camper structure stretching over the pickup cabin (cab). This precious extra space above the cab is almost always used as a queen (king)-size bed. Such arrangement leaves the remaining part of the camper’s structure for kitchen, bathroom and living areas allowing for quite comfortable camping environment. As a result the cabover campers offer great improvement compared to traditional truck camper shells.

These days cab-over campers are usually called “Truck Campers” or “Slide-on-Campers”. The latter name reflects the method of loading the camper on the truck bed (sliding on and out during correspondingly loading and unloading. 

Cabover concept is not new. Here an example from the "remote" past - the Romer unit....

Modern cabover campers are made from aluminum, fiberglass and/or wood. Although you can find units entirely made from aluminum, the most common design is still the combination of mentioned materials, for example wood frame finished outside with aluminum and inside with fiberglass.

Most cabover campers are solid structures that cannot be altered. There are however pop-up units that can be extended vertically and slide-out units extending horizontally. The pop-up segment is usually made from fabrics (like in classic popup trailers). Folding “roof” in pop-up cabover campers greatly improves the aerodynamics of the loaded pickup.

Contemporary models of truck campers (or if you want to use the original name - campers over the cab) offer the comfort and space of a small motorhome.  Indeed, they offer many of the features that create a “home environment”. Adding to that the “easiness” of the loading/unloading process (thanks to camper’s jacks) it is understandable that cab-over campers are very popular among enthusiasts of weekend RV-ing.

Insider's view: Wooden frame of the cabover


Cabover camper pros:

a)    Easy process of loading and unloading
b)    Ability to use the vehicle (pickup) for usual business (camper is detachable)
c)    Comfort of small motor-home
d)    Easy to drive on the road (no pulled unit)
e)    Easy to maneuver in “tight” space (campgrounds, city etc…)
f)    Less expensive in direct and maintenance costs (given the comfort).
For example no extra tires, most likely lower insurance and registration cost to name only few…..

And few tips:

a)    When loaded on your pickup truck, cabover campers increase the overall height of your vehicle. Be careful when entering the garages and gas stations! Frankly - it is not that the loaded pickup is outrageously high, it is rather your habit of driving your truck on a daily basis with regular “small stuff” in the cargo space!
b)    If you expect to tow an extra load (for example a boat or quad…) you may look for a cabover camper with the side entrance. It will allow for an easy access to the camper in any towing scenario.

Extended cabover pop-up camper TC700 shown on a Toyota with the full wrap-around rear end.


As mentioned earlier, the cabover campers are a favorite solution for pickup owners. It seems just a natural “next-step” to use them for “out-of-the-box” purposes of which recreation is one of the most important.

There are many models of cabover campers, from simplest low-cost units to more expensive designs with slide-outs and modern amenities to choose from. They are designed to fit various pickup designs like popular standard, short and long bed trucks. Given such variety of truck designs it may be worth to mention here the fundamental characteristics of truck beds.

The Standard Bed is the most popular version of pickup beds. Compact truck beds are usually 5ft long and full size correspondingly 6.5ft long.

The Long Bed is typically one to two foot longer than corresponding standard bed. The compact versions are 7ft long and full size correspondingly 8ft.

The lengths of Short Beds are largely varying depending on the cab design (standard cab, extended cab). In some models with standard cab they can even exceed 6ft, in some with extended cab can be shorter than 5ft (these are sometimes called Super Short Bed trucks).
It should be noted that pickup beds’ dimensions belonging to the same class of truck (Long, Standard and especially Short) vary depending on the model and manufacturer so the values above are only approximations.

Regarding beds’ width – compact truck beds are approximately 50 inches wide while full-size beds are usually from 60 to 70 inches.

Another characteristic of pickup beds is the location of wheel wells.
Step-Side truck beds have side panels inside the wheel wells, what results in perfectly rectangular cargo space. The disadvantage is a less aerodynamic shape and more wind noise at higher speeds.


truck beds have side panels located inside the wheel wells (they are also called Strait Bed trucks).  They improve aerodynamics but not always offer a flat bed. In some cases it may be a  limitation!

Visitor's story......

With so many people looking towards campers there are many who are not able to afford to invest in a normal pull behind camper.

Because of this, the number of people looking at cabover campers trailers is increasing.

With reasons varying in exactly the reason for the sudden popularity they are picking up many fans who in the past would have avoided the idea of using a camper all together.

From the single people who enjoy camping but only need small amounts of space, to those who are only traveling with a small family there are numerous reasons why using cabover camper trailers is the perfect solution.

From small and compact trailers to the large camper trailers there is a great solution that can solve everyone’s needs and for those looking to go camping with only a small pickup truck using a cabover camper trailer is a great solution.

By providing campers with a bed, as well as the basics needed for a great camping trip, many consider cabover camper trailers to be the closest to real camping that you can come while still using a camper. With the lack of compete modern amenities it allows most campers to really connect to the outdoors. With a wide range of cabover camper trailers to choose from, most people who have a pickup truck are able to find a great camper that fits their truck as well as their budget.

As you can imagine, being so much smaller cabover camper trailers are also much more affordable allowing more people than before to experience the great outdoors by camping. Check out the comfortable surroundings that you can be sleeping in on your next camping trip and you may be pleasantly surprised at the features that can be carefully arranged into the small area that it provides.

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