First Alaskan-Flat bed side door entry-A dream

Romero

New member
#1
I have been reading this site for a few years and love all the different opinions and ideas, gear info et al. I have finally have put together the rig for me. An Alaskan flat bed side door entry on a SRW flat bed F350. Only one of its kind so far.
I have camped out of a Granby, a Palomino and a shell. All were at one time on my extended cab Nissan Titan and it was fine even great. After 300k miles a newer rig was the plan with a new design. Landed with AK camper to fit my budget and time and no tools. Found a new/used 2016 F350 super cab SWR short bed with 9000 miles on it. A short wheel base and nice handling and fitting in and around the wilds. I decided on a 350 because I didn’t want to modify any thing for the weight.
I approached Bryan at Alaskan camper with my floorplan. He was willing to go for it. I wanted their workmanship and insulation of the hard side pop up for year round wandering. Bryan thought they could build a side door entry and we went to work fitting in the appliances.7’x7 feet cab over pop up. I installed the solar system to handle everything and be self sufficient for days parked even under the clouds.
It took awhile to figure out what I wanted in a rig. A bit of give and take on design. I am a retired wildand firefighter and have camped in the dirt with rocks as pillows many a time. Going from tents to truck shells to pop up campers is now luxury for me. Having a heater, fridge for some cold ones and a soft dry bed is a delight. When we want to be out under the stars just throw out the pads and bags and we have the storage to do it all. So comfortable. I have been on fires all over the US, Canada and Mexico, which fed the travel bug for over 30 years. Now I can go back to many of the places that are wild and not on fire. Even winter camping will happen. I have already experienced that the Alaskan is better insulated for the cold and keeping out the heat and quieter on windy nights. Being an AZ native I do like the western half of the continent for camping, but now that there is a house on my back anywhere is probable. Inuvik to Patagonia. bedtobackwithtable.jpg raisedupwithCO.jpg caboverinsidebed.jpg fridgeint.jpg tiltwithpeaks.jpg fronthalfbyfold.jpg batteryarea.jpg solarmonitor.jpg
One thing that the AK doesn’t have is a screen door. I am getting ready to make one up for it. I bought a $2. Spring loaded rod at a hardware store and will sew a hanging screen. I am also thinking of rigging a toolbox to be on the rear of the flat bed to hold the steps for easy access (so they don’t have to be inside while driving) and other outdoor items.
 
#3
Really cool. Did he send any in progress pics that you can share?
Hope you get a lot of fun out of it.

Side note, as a guy that grew up on the East coast I had never experienced big wild fires . I hiked Glacier National Park with some friends this summer, and there were several fires. You and your peers do an amazing amount of backbreaking work, and you all must be a bit nuts! Thanks for your efforts , I imagine those with property close to the fire line appreciate it on a much higher scale


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk Pro
 
#5
Looks great; congratulations! I like the layout a lot with the rear dinette to see out the back instead of the front dinette by the bed. Great separation between the sleeping person and the person at the table is nice. Is there a toilet setup? If not I do wonder if/where they would put one...

On a side note... not sure if you have used smaller vehicles in similar use cases in the past (e.g. Jeep or Tacoma size), but wondering how the full size with an Alaskan compares to smaller vehicles.
 
#6
Impressive....had no idea a side entrance Alaskan existed. I'm working with Bryan now on a 10' CO and expect delivery April/May 2018. You mentioned solar and what system(s) did you use ? Like you I gleaned a ton of information on this site and followed Carlyle who is on here with a NON Cabover Alaskan.... extensively on my buildout. Congrats....maybe see you on the road some day. Happy Holidays !
 
#7
Forgot....You mentioned travel from Inuvik to Patagonia and you might like to read the blog of: www.ducknotes.org You will recognize the Alaskan on the Pan American Highway....a most impressive trip for this couple. Cheers !!
 
#8
Totally awesome!

Now if they could just come up with a shower solution, I’d give Alaskan a lot more thought than continuing to lust for an XP.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 

Romero

New member
#9
A few build out pics

Congratulations on getting a camper from AK and Bryan's team. Older or newer bigger or smaller they are great at making the product you want. I didn't get many pics, we talked more over the phone as the project went along. I had visited the factory before the big start.

Yes, I have camped out of a Tacoma with a shell on the truck and gear stacked in the back of the rig. We also loaded up our sleeping bags and cooler and camped out of a Ford escape driving and camping and hiking along the Dalton Highway Fairbanks north to the Bay, over the Brooks range. I am fortunate that being 5'5" I can fit in the small SUV with the seats folded down when the weather is crappy. You can set up anything to work when you have to. I never put a whole lot of effort in building out the gadgets in my previous campers because I spent a lot of days/years out of doors overnight with work and didn't have a lot of time camping for pleasure. But now Yahoo!

I am thoroughly enjoying having everything at my finger tips and only taking 5 minutes to set up and be dry if there is a snow storm/rain happening. The flat bed is only 7' long by 7' wide and feels like a castle. The truck wheelbase is 142" and travels in and out of places easily. The only thing I have to get used to and will with time... is I have to remember to watch my height because the Alaskan is a bit taller popped down than my previous camping rigs. I am a little bummed that it doesn't fit in my garage (need 1 more foot) because now I have to winterize it and it takes a little more time(filling the water) to head out on an adventure. In order for the fuel to go in the truck the fill spot has to be setting up so far and then the bed on the frame etc..I tried to make it as short as possible. If the camper was built on the frame and a path for the fuel line/ fill to go up through the camper(like the tiger) maybe it could be shorter. If I would have known I would ever have one of these campers I would have built a taller garage door. haha but not that big a deal.

Yes you can put a cassette toilet in the Alaskan. I chose not to. They make a by-fold top opening and two larger side doors that open for the cassette to be in. Imagine the place where I have the batteries stored with a toilet instead and without the shelf.

The solar set up I built with a friend's help and guidance after I picked up the camper. AK mounted the panels I wanted and drilled a hole in the roof for me to run the wires etc.
2- 160 watt Everbrite mono crystalline panels (Peak power 18.1 V and 9.1 amp) with a Junction box mounted on roof also.
Used 6 AWG wire run to batteries. temco welding wire more flexible
Trimetric Controller charger 2030 and monitor 2030A and a temp sensor
300 amp fuse block (Blue Sea systems)
Shunt 500 amp
2-40 amp inline breaker fuse
2- Lifeline AGM batteries Group 31XT 125 AH weight 74# each
 

Attachments

calicamper

Expedition Leader
#11
Very nice! My dad had an alaskan camper when I was a kid. They havent changed much but even 40yrs ago the old camper we had was always a warm place to go on s cold night.

The flatbed approach with the rear seating area and side entry really changes the usable space. Sure beats a Rock and dirty turnouts! Ha
 
#14
Pistons are solid and strong

Yes the pistons are no longer brass. I was a little bummed cause I liked the brass look...but these are their new solid pistons. They are going on all future builds. Bryan at AK said there will be fewer problems, longer life with seals and rings not leaking and they are much stronger. A plus being solid is when you put in the pins to set the height that you don't have to fight or should I say finesse sliding in the pins through the hollow brass post, because being solid...it is easy pin insert.