New Alaskan side entry flatbed 8.5' build!!

dahlberg

New member
Very nice setup. Have you set the camper up during a storm yet? That has been one of my biggest concerns about an Alaskan... that and the seemingly significant potential for leaks around the front while driving during a rainstorm.
Yes! The whole trip back was either rain or snow. Setting it up is a non-issue, it's done in about 90 seconds and your bed is protected from any driving rain while raising because the panels cover the bed. We did notice some bugs on the inside of parts of the side panels after driving all day, but that's abnormal and Bryan is sending us new weather stripping. We have had no issues with water in the front at all, but we've only taken it on one trip so not sure if it could be a problem in the future. Let us know if you have any other questions!
 

Clutch

<---Pass
Thank you! Everything is customizable, I'm surprised more people don't take advantage of it. Appreciate the kind words!
You're welcome! I was reading an article on their flat beds, and they were saying that you could have pretty much anything you want...but it doesn't seem many take advantage of it.

It is all Wilsonart, right? I was flipping through their swatches the other day, some really cool finishes.
 

ncalies

New member
You're welcome! I was reading an article on their flat beds, and they were saying that you could have pretty much anything you want...but it doesn't seem many take advantage of it.

It is all Wilsonart, right? I was flipping through their swatches the other day, some really cool finishes.
Yes, they are all Wilsonart and we totally agree with you, there are so many colors to pick from. The nice thing is that they will send you as many swatches as you want for free. We probably ordered close to 30 colors and kept the one we originally told Alaskan, so that was nice. Wilsonart sends them out quickly too!
 

ncalies

New member
Are the hydraulic lifts a hindrance to getting in and out of the overcab bed?
No, I don't think they are a hinderance, they are there though and you know it. I think they are actually kind of nice because sleeping on the outside, you don't feel like you are going to ever roll off the bed and it's not like a wall, so you still feel like it's very open. I would say the biggest "hinderance" getting in and out (mostly out) would be the height of space between the mattress and the curved panel that the hydraulics are attached to. You just have to keep it in mind that it's there.
 
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Clutch

<---Pass
Yes, they are all Wilsonart and we totally agree with you, there are so many colors to pick from. The nice thing is that they will send you as many swatches as you want for free. We probably ordered close to 30 colors and kept the one we originally told Alaskan, so that was nice. Wilsonart sends them out quickly too!
I did not know that sent out samples, good to know! Thanks.
 

jrfromafar

Adventurer
Beautiful! One question - have you driven it down dirt roads yet, and if so, how dust proof is your camper?

I just put 4,248 miles on my 2014 F250 & ‘72 Alaskan camper - Southwest adventure! It held up really well - but had to put up with a lot of dust
 

ncalies

New member
Beautiful! One question - have you driven it down dirt roads yet, and if so, how dust proof is your camper?

I just put 4,248 miles on my 2014 F250 & ‘72 Alaskan camper - Southwest adventure! It held up really well - but had to put up with a lot of dust
Thank you! We drive on dirt roads all the time, pretty much every trip leads to dirt roads for us. Overall, it stays very clean. There is a little bit of dust that gets in right at the corners of where the mattress meets the countertops, but we think that can be fixed with a little more weather stripping. We are going to take a flashlight and shine it up and see where the gap is. Overall, it handles great off road though.
 

kerry

Expedition Leader
Did I see you driving in or near Denver the other day? I saw an Alaskan on a flatbed from behind and it didn't have a rear door and it made me think of you.
 

ncalies

New member
Did I see you driving in or near Denver the other day? I saw an Alaskan on a flatbed from behind and it didn't have a rear door and it made me think of you.
We live in Golden so it could have been us! We are the 3rd flatbed Alaskan side entry camper and I know Bryan had his at the Expo out East, so that leaves us and one other!
 

ncalies

New member
How was it going through the customizing process as a whole?
It was really easy. We built out a van before this which had many more decisions than our camper. Since Alaskan has a tried and true floor plan, it was mostly us picking out cosmetics like walls, ceiling, floor, sink, faucet, fabric. We did not get the toilet so we had custom drawers made to replace them. We also had the propane tank and Truma (heater) put on the drivers side next to each other. That way, we took up all of one dinette seat storage for that and left the passenger one completely empty (except for the hydraulic pump). This also allowed us to have the propane and heater vents on the drivers side rather than on the rear of the camper, it keeps them much cleaner while driving snowy roads. We also decided to put the cooktop over our drawers near the door rather than the typical spot next to the sink. We would 100% do that again, it's nice having the cooktop near the door and having the whole counter be open. Bryan and his team are open to pretty much every idea you can throw at them. I'm sure there is stuff I forgot to mention, but I talked with Bryan throughout the whole process changing things up, asking for details on specifics, etc, and he and his team were super helpful and very patient!
 

Buddha.

Lurker
I wouldn’t feel too bad about that fuel mileage. My Chevy gasser only gets 13-14 unloaded on stock rubber.
 
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