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Slide-in Sunradrer

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To Bajadulce, et. al.;

I posted the slide-in Sunrader photos (2008, Logan, Utah) to the Gallery (my first) for others' benefit as well, intending them to be discreet. Perhaps others can add something interesting over the holiday to bump them down from the front page. I'll have to talk to Greg about future posts to deep background.

I see other slide-ins here in San Francisco from time to time.

I wonder if that Mazda has the rotary engine?

Steve R.

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Steve, thnx for posting those pics in the gallery. Doesn't look like something like that would fit in the back of a 1978 Toyota pickup so it most likely was marketed to full size trucks. Interesting history in that the company switched from manufacturing slide-in camper shells for full size pickups to permanent shells mounted on the toyota mini.

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They made 2 sizes. One for the Toyota and another one for full sized trucks. Don't have any pics but I've seen plenty sitting nicely on the back of a Toyota. Opps found one on this site

200353618855BUj6iCwmkKGrHgoOKjMEjlL.jpg

LS

Steve, thnx for posting those pics in the gallery. Doesn't look like something like that would fit in the back of a 1978 Toyota pickup so it most likely was marketed to full size trucks. Interesting history in that the company switched from manufacturing slide-in camper shells for full size pickups to permanent shells mounted on the toyota mini.

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That's interesting thnx for posting.

Some observations:

  • The front windows seem to wrap around more in these?
  • The shell itself appears to be narrower?
  • The roof profile seems different as it is missing the vertical raised section down the galley. So it must have even shorter headroom?
  • With the roof profile and the proximity of that window to roof, I imagine there were no overhead cabinetry (prob a good thing)
  • With the back door design, wonder if these had the hinged rear walls that folds up?
  • I don't see any kind of jackstands? Wonder if these had a cable winch for "pulling" shell into truck or 2 or more ppl just muscled them in?
  • Also no turnbuckles or other straps off the sides. Wonder how it was secured down?
  • There aren't any side windows in the upper bunk area?

In general, those things are pretty cool and have some potential. Some pros & cons on the apparent design:

  • Aluminum is lighter than chopped glass, but fiberglass can be 100% waterproof maintenance free if designed correctly.
  • Portable design which means you have a truck when not camping (which is most of the time)

Some Flaws:


  • Some small sliding windows on the sides of the overhead bunk rather than the wrap arounds would have provided some much needed ventilation + eliminated potential leaks of those dubious plexiglass permanent windows.
  • Don't understand why they skimped on the ceiling headroom as the camper already has a rather high profile; what's a few more inches?
  • Not crazy about how much they extended the rear of the shell just to fit a full size door and a step. Seems that could have been accomplished without adding as much additional post tailgate length as they did. Prob some legal B.S with the fact that it is a step thus 11" minimum "run".
  • I also don't understand the 3 part construction (2 halves + floor) of sunraders with the trim and half million screws. Wouldn't it have been better to mold the shell all the way to the floor as 1 piece and do away with combining 2 upper halves? Simply mold the shell upside down (as they must have done) but as one piece + a floor; Not 3 pieces.
  • No pictures of the interior, but the venting seems to suggest the fridge is sitting atop the wheelwell and some sort of range/oven in the rear. There's not much you can do with the fact the camper has to slide between the whell wells in the truck in terms of putting the fridge and bulk of weight on the floor, but might have been able to get it up front by the cab. dunno can't really comment on this as no pics of inside, but I'm sure it's typical of RVs made in the late 70's and 80's.
  • If the camper is in fact narrower, then sleeping sideways in the overhead bunk is going to be even more awkward than the standard 75" or whatever it is we have.
  • Designers should have explored ideas with a hardsided popup similar to the Alaskan campers. They went with the 2 part upper construction, so they weren't far from the design. This would have given a lower profile + the headroom when erect. Even a canvas popup similar to the chinook might have worked. Instead they got this sorta halfway version of a full standup.

The sunrader slide-in is pretty cool but seems to miss the mark in a lot of elements. The beauty of the thing being made out of fiberglass tho, is these shortcomings can be easily modified as opposed to an aluminum sided structure. :)

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Yes the back door hinges up like the other one. I'm told the headroom is higher on these. here are some pics of a 78 Sunrader motorhome. The coach and interior are the same as the truck camper but this one has had some remodeling done and of course there is a little more room around the bottom because of no truck bed

http://s363.photobucket.com/albums/oo73/advocateone/1978%20Sunrader/

Top mold is identical to the truck camper and the overhead bed has a much higher ceiling. I could sleep in one of these up there but I fell my 86 Sunrader is too low or comfort. Only bottom mold is different

LS

That's interesting thnx for posting.

Some observations:

  • The front windows seem to wrap around more in these?
  • The shell itself appears to be narrower?
  • The roof profile seems different as it is missing the vertical raised section down the galley. So it must have even shorter headroom?
  • With the roof profile and the proximity of that window to roof, I imagine there were no overhead cabinetry (prob a good thing)
  • With the back door design, wonder if these had the hinged rear walls that folds up?
  • I don't see any kind of jackstands? Wonder if these had a cable winch for "pulling" shell into truck or 2 or more ppl just muscled them in?
  • Also no turnbuckles or other straps off the sides. Wonder how it was secured down?
  • There aren't any side windows in the upper bunk area?

In general, those things are pretty cool and have some potential. Some pros & cons on the apparent design:
  • Aluminum is lighter than chopped glass, but fiberglass can be 100% waterproof maintenance free if designed correctly.
  • Portable design which means you have a truck when not camping (which is most of the time)

Some Flaws:

  • Some small sliding windows on the sides of the overhead bunk rather than the wrap arounds would have provided some much needed ventilation + eliminated potential leaks of those dubious plexiglass permanent windows.
  • Don't understand why they skimped on the ceiling headroom as the camper already has a rather high profile; what's a few more inches?
  • Not crazy about how much they extended the rear of the shell just to fit a full size door and a step. Seems that could have been accomplished without adding as much additional post tailgate length as they did. Prob some legal B.S with the fact that it is a step thus 11" minimum "run".
  • I also don't understand the 3 part construction (2 halves + floor) of sunraders with the trim and half million screws. Wouldn't it have been better to mold the shell all the way to the floor as 1 piece and do away with combining 2 upper halves? Simply mold the shell upside down (as they must have done) but as one piece + a floor; Not 3 pieces.
  • No pictures of the interior, but the venting seems to suggest the fridge is sitting atop the wheelwell and some sort of range/oven in the rear. There's not much you can do with the fact the camper has to slide between the whell wells in the truck in terms of putting the fridge and bulk of weight on the floor, but might have been able to get it up front by the cab. dunno can't really comment on this as no pics of inside, but I'm sure it's typical of RVs made in the late 70's and 80's.
  • If the camper is in fact narrower, then sleeping sideways in the overhead bunk is going to be even more awkward than the standard 75" or whatever it is we have.
  • Designers should have explored ideas with a hardsided popup similar to the Alaskan campers. They went with the 2 part upper construction, so they weren't far from the design. This would have given a lower profile + the headroom when erect. Even a canvas popup similar to the chinook might have worked. Instead they got this sorta halfway version of a full standup.

The sunrader slide-in is pretty cool but seems to miss the mark in a lot of elements. The beauty of the thing being made out of fiberglass tho, is these shortcomings can be easily modified as opposed to an aluminum sided structure. :)

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Those are interesting pictures. Camper definitely looks shorter than 18' and has nice proportions. Now that it has been pointed out, the overhead bunk area definitely looks considerably taller. Wonder why the company changed the overhead configuration. I like these older dimensions better. This older design must have much taller walls compared to the newer 18'+ raders as that familiar raised roof section with its transitions is missing.

I'm guessing the slide-in was actually the same width, but it sure seemed a lot narrower in the pictures for some reason.

That hinged rear wall is really bizarre. Wonder what it's intended function was? I really can't think of much reasons for it.

In picture #30, the owner appears to have some sort of slide out upper bunk configuration as the pillow/blankets are definitely running lengthwise rather than across. The interior shots of the bunk area definitely show how much more headroom the bunk has for sure. Wonder what the actual headroom is throughout rest of cab compared to that of the newer 18'+ ones.

I don't have any recollection of the headroom in my original rader. I've read it to be slightly less than 6'? I'm a short 5'10" and don't seem to recall it being much of a problem tho.

The interior of that rader pictured is a little better laid out than I had imagined. Bathroom seems a bit much for such a small space, but not a bad setup.

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The pics Of the 78 motorhome I posted belong to Sunrader Bob. He owns the toyota motorhome tech site. I'm sure he would be happy to answer any other questions you have about his rig. He sold it but he's a stickler for details so I'm sure he can give you the height. Bed is front to back sleeping like a chinook and it's a full queen size

http://autos.groups.yahoo.com/group/Toyota_Motorhome_Tech/

LS

Those are interesting pictures. Camper definitely looks shorter than 18' and has nice proportions. Now that it has been pointed out, the overhead bunk area definitely looks considerably taller. Wonder why the company changed the overhead configuration. I like these older dimensions better. This older design must have much taller walls compared to the newer 18'+ raders as that familiar raised roof section with its transitions is missing.

I'm guessing the slide-in was actually the same width, but it sure seemed a lot narrower in the pictures for some reason.

That hinged rear wall is really bizarre. Wonder what it's intended function was? I really can't think of much reasons for it.

In picture #30, the owner appears to have some sort of slide out upper bunk configuration as the pillow/blankets are definitely running lengthwise rather than across. The interior shots of the bunk area definitely show how much more headroom the bunk has for sure. Wonder what the actual headroom is throughout rest of cab compared to that of the newer 18'+ ones.

I don't have any recollection of the headroom in my original rader. I've read it to be slightly less than 6'? I'm a short 5'10" and don't seem to recall it being much of a problem tho.

The interior of that rader pictured is a little better laid out than I had imagined. Bathroom seems a bit much for such a small space, but not a bad setup.

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You might be right. I just remember it was really big for a little motorhome

Linda

Doesn't he like to refer to the lenghtwise bed size as a 'California King'?

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