Thread: Hallmark makes an all-composite truck camper

  1. #1
    haven is offline Expedition Portal Moderator Expedition Leader
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Posts
    10,527

    Default Hallmark makes an all-composite truck camper

    Hallmark is a Colorado-based manufacturer of truck campers. They recently began experimenting with a camper constructed of composite materials. Using no wood or metal, they have built versions of their truck campers with a material called Coosa, a composite that can be worked just like wood (routed, stapled, nailed, painted). The result is a camper that weighs only 50 lb less than Hallmark's design with framing, floor, roof and cabinetry made from wood.

    So if there's no weight advantage, why buy a camper built from more expensive composites? The camper will be impervious to moisture, and insects are not interested in eating the bones of the camper. These features could give the the composite camper an advantage in areas with high humidity (like western Washington state and southeast Alaska) or wood-eating insect populations (many places in USA, the Central American tropics, east Africa, etc)

    To me, the most interesting aspect of this story is that composite materials by themselves don't save weight. You have to adopt different construction techniques to gain full advantage of the strength to weight ratio of composites.

    Hallmark will present the new campers at Overland Expo in May. Definitely worth checking out.

    Here's an article in Truck Camper Magazine with more details
    http://www.truckcampermagazine.com/h...-truck-camper/

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Nov 2010
    Location
    Boulder, CO
    Posts
    936
    Quote Originally Posted by haven View Post
    To me, the most interesting aspect of this story is that composite materials by themselves don't save weight. You have to adopt different construction techniques to gain full advantage of the strength to weight ratio of composites.
    The main way you're going to save weight on composites is design the structure as a whole and don't go overkill on the skin thickness (lots of surface area there). Its not a miracle cure but I think there is probably decent room for improvement over 50# on a whole camper.
    GONE[2003 Dodge 1500 quad cab 4x4 5.7L Hemi auto w/ ride rite air springs and 1999(2000?) Hawk]

    2007 Dodge 2500 quad cab 4x4 5.7L Hemi auto soon to have: SLOWLY progressing Home built foam core fiberglass skin pop-up camper


    I've got extra 14ga red and black SXL wire, $18 for 100' coil shipped if interested PM me.

  3. #3
    Not really surprised the weight savings aren't that great - they've only replaced the framing with coosa. From the pictures it doesn't look like a lot of material.

    It would be interesting to see how much weight savings would come from a design using structural foam panels instead.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Location
    near detroit
    Posts
    903
    I am somewhat confused by the "world's first all composite camper" statement. I don't think that is quite right...
    Cheers,
    Frank

    ____________________________________________

    "airsotts-narf"

    Save a Life, Adopt !

    Redline wrote: "no ring, no bling, bada-bing" ( http://roadtraveler.net/goodbye-bling-rings/ )
    2013 LivinLite Camplite 16DBS

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    Location
    J10 M40 Oxfordshire UK
    Posts
    294
    Ersatznarf have to agree I think theres a lot of Europeans and Aussies that would be disputing that to say the least !!
    1986 110 CSW TDi6
    1992 90 300tdi auto
    1999 P38 DSE Auto
    2001 Freelander TD4 Auto

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Location
    near detroit
    Posts
    903
    Hi Tacr2man,
    Thanks - that sort of statement always makes me wonder.
    I thought that the Europeans and Aussies, too, have been doing this sort of thing for quite some time.
    It seems we could learn something from that...
    Also, I am wondering if the Coosa they are using is just stapled and not bonded with adhesives ?
    Wouldn't it be more durable if it were bonded ?
    It's good that they were able to remove the wood, but it's a big cost penalty for not much other benefit, it seems ?
    Cheers,
    Frank

    ____________________________________________

    "airsotts-narf"

    Save a Life, Adopt !

    Redline wrote: "no ring, no bling, bada-bing" ( http://roadtraveler.net/goodbye-bling-rings/ )
    2013 LivinLite Camplite 16DBS

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •