Sleeping in a pick up's bed

Discussion in 'Homesteading Questions' started by moopups, Mar 9, 2005.

  1. moopups

    moopups In Remembrance

    Messages:
    7,102
    Joined:
    May 12, 2002
    Location:
    In beautiful downtown Sticks, near Belleview, Fl.
    We are blessed with the Skyway Bridge near St. Pete, Fla, a barge hit it many years back so it was torn down and a new one added. There is a 'drive to' fishing area where we can go and spend as much time as we want to there, fishing in salt water of the Gulf, just around the corner for us. There is rest rooms, bait sales, ect.

    What I need is a plan to creat a sleeping area in the back of a Ford pick up, so we can have a place to do it right, carry a propane stove, food, ice, ect. A slide in camper is too exspensive, no where to stash it later as the pick up is used daily, whats available better than a PVC framework with a tarp? There is a foam matress, sleeping bags ect., allready available, any ideas for this mini camp in a truck bed? Think low dollars.
     
  2. fin29

    fin29 Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    3,622
    Joined:
    Jun 4, 2003
    Location:
    Maine

  3. moopups

    moopups In Remembrance

    Messages:
    7,102
    Joined:
    May 12, 2002
    Location:
    In beautiful downtown Sticks, near Belleview, Fl.
    Good info, thats about my speed for a Winnybegger camper.
     
  4. scott

    scott Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    212
    Joined:
    May 10, 2002
    Location:
    southern ohio
    What a great drive ...you are lucky to be so close...one of my favorites ...

    moopups .... you'll be stylin' with that rig.

    if it gets rainy ... head to st pete and spend some time in the Dali museum.
     
  5. Freeholder

    Freeholder Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    5,665
    Joined:
    Jun 19, 2004
    I don't know if this would work with what you have, but it might give you some ideas. We had a little GM pickup. The bed rusted out pretty bad, so we took it off and built a flatbed. In order to haul stuff, we built a plywood box that mounted on the flatbed -- 2x4s on the sides of the box slotted down into metal brackets mounted on the sides of the flatbed. The box was only four feet high (the width of a sheet of plywood) and six feet square. For a little extra headroom, and to keep rainwater from pooling on the roof, we arched electrical conduit over the box, sort of like covered wagon bows but not as high, and stretched canvas over the top. The canvas was wrapped around slats and screwed taut to the plywood box. This gave us just enough headroom for me to stand up inside -- I'm about 5'3".

    In preparation for traveling, I built two narrow (24" wide) cots inside the box about three feet off the floor, which left lots of room for stuff underneath. To keep weight down, I made the cots out of canvas slung on a couple of pipes. The door was not quite two feet wide, but adequate. I kept a kitchen stepladder inside the door, as the flatbed was too high off the ground for me or my daughter to step up into it. We lived in and out of this box for four months. I had some screen (bought in a roll meant to repair screen doors) to put over the doorway in case the bugs got too bad, and we were very thankful to have it at one location where the mosquitoes were terrible. I had some extra canvas with me to use for a dining fly, but we never needed it, as the weather was mostly pretty good.

    Cost was for a few 2x4s, four sheets of 1/4 inch plywood, the four brackets (if you were putting a contraption like this on a pickup box instead of a flatbed, you'd just use the holes that are already in the sides of the pu bed), four pieces of conduit, some canvas, paint, and screws. Oh, and a latch for the door.

    We did go through several heavy thunderstorms, and got a little damp inside from the canvas roof -- follow the same rules as with a tent, and don't touch the canvas during rain, or it will leak. But if you made a roof with waterproof material, you'd have condensation inside, which might make you even wetter than the light mist we got during a pounding rain. Painted with exterior latex (white) the canvas roof should last for quite a few years. It looked as good after four months and ten thousand miles as when we started out, just a little dustier.

    Kathleen
     
  6. Grandmotherbear

    Grandmotherbear Well-Known Member Supporter

    Messages:
    8,925
    Joined:
    May 14, 2002
    Location:
    Fl Zones 11
    Moopups& FlGirl- I used to see dome tents set up on the fishing part of the Skyway, esp during sunny days! Anyway thet you could "discreetly" inquire of someone if that is still allowed??
     
  7. mightybooboo

    mightybooboo Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    11,301
    Joined:
    Feb 10, 2004
    Location:
    So Cal Mtns
    We use plywood on the floor of the bed so you dont freeze,and pitch our little dome tent in the bed.Do this when we visit the desert.No rocks,bugs or snakes to share your sleeping bag.Works for us.Cheap too.

    BooBoo
     
  8. whiterock

    whiterock Well-Known Member Supporter

    Messages:
    3,816
    Joined:
    Mar 26, 2003
    Location:
    South of DFW,TX zone 8a
    20 years ago or so Field and Stream magazine had a article in the vehicle section where they used a regular shell camper and had a liner built with drawers, storage, and othe neat stuff from plywood.

    I don't know if you could locate it but it was really nice.
    Ed
     
  9. Ken Scharabok

    Ken Scharabok In Remembrance

    Messages:
    6,844
    Joined:
    May 11, 2002
    Look around for a used bed cover. Nice in that it is permanent. I had ladder bars added to the front and back of mine and they have turned out to be great for hauling stuff. I just put down a single bed mattress (bunk bed type). However, I'm not nearly as agile on the in and out bit anymore.

    Ken Scharabok
     
  10. 65284

    65284 Well-Known Member Supporter

    Messages:
    2,349
    Joined:
    Sep 17, 2003
    Location:
    Missouri
    For several years we camped at weekend swap meets in the back of a pickup in a camper shell. I put plywood side to side the full width of the bed. It rested on the wheel wells, with doubled 2X4 "legs" at each end and one in the center between the wheel wells extending down the the bed floor. The ply wood was fastened to the braces and legs with stove bolts and wing nuts, it could be disassembled and removed in less than 10 minutes. We had an air mattress with a 112 volt air pump on top of that. Plenty of room, quite comfy, and plenty of storage under the bed. The shell was an older one we bought cheaply. It was fastened on with clamps and was removed when not in use. I set 2 pairs of posts and fastened cross braces on each pair. There were two boards running between the cross braces. They were the same height as the camper on the truck and slightly wider than the shell. I backed up to it and slid the shell off onto it. It is easier to made than it is to describe. This setup worked well for us.
     
  11. Beeman

    Beeman Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    6,977
    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2002
    Location:
    East TN
    A cheap used bed cap for about $25-$50 and a piece of plywood in the bed because of the ribs in the floor. I covered the plywood with cheap carpet. i spent many nights sleeping in my pickup bed.
    keep it simple, it makes it so much more enjoyable.
     
  12. evermoor

    evermoor Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    256
    Joined:
    Nov 20, 2004
    We put a topper on our old truck Then some 2x4's across the base of the topper and box, then two sheets of plywood. Put an air matteress on the blanket covered plywood. This was really easy, had around a foot and a half above and below the plywood for storage and sleeping. The topper and truck had sliding windows so you could climb up front without getting out. Check around for slide in campers, I just saw one for $50, best offer. OK it looked like norman bates and a host of pigeons were the last residents.
     
  13. MikeD

    MikeD Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    144
    Joined:
    Aug 30, 2003
    And if you want to get REALLY technical :) you can look into a power inverter of sufficient wattage for you. Plug it into a cigarette lighter and, depending on the size of the inverter, you can run anything from an electric razor to a small television - although HBO might be a tad difficult - unless of course you mount a small dish somewhere on the truck...:)

    In all seriousness, you can get into a small inverter for about $40 that will handle basic electrical needs including the blowing up of something along the lines of an Aerobed.
     
  14. AngieM2

    AngieM2 Big Front Porch advocate

    Messages:
    44,855
    Joined:
    May 10, 2002
    Mitch I was just looking at these sites and thought of this thread.

    http://www.enslin.com/rae/gypsy/camps.htm

    with your abilities, you might use this as inspiration, or with your welding, maybe you could make one or two for selling to get cash to get out of dodge..

    Angie
     
  15. Cabin Fever

    Cabin Fever Life NRA Member since 1976 Supporter

    Messages:
    15,114
    Joined:
    May 10, 2002
    Location:
    Between Crosslake and Emily Minnesota
    I knew some guys who slept in pickup's beds....they caught VD! Don't do it, Mitch!
     
  16. Jan Doling

    Jan Doling Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    4,898
    Joined:
    May 21, 2004
    Location:
    Zone 9b
    CABIN FEVER: :haha: :haha: :haha: :haha:

    Bless you...I really needed that today!
     
  17. Ken Scharabok

    Ken Scharabok In Remembrance

    Messages:
    6,844
    Joined:
    May 11, 2002
    Didn't a recent ex-president prefer astrotuff in the back of a El Camino in his younger days?
     
  18. Fla Gal

    Fla Gal Bunny Poo Monger Supporter

    Messages:
    3,067
    Joined:
    Jul 14, 2003
    Location:
    Central Florida
    :eek:

    :haha: :haha: :haha: :p
     
  19. BCR

    BCR Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    1,026
    Joined:
    Jun 24, 2002
    Location:
    WV
    Campmor.com currently has three different Suv, van and Pickup tents that expand out the back. They are $99.