to the camper top
For safety always use a rigid stay as a physical lock for when the
camper top is open. I used a piece of 2 x 1” cut just shorter than
the fully open height. This allowed for the struts to be positioned
slightly loaded at this locked height.
I hinged my camper top with 4 x 100mm Butt hinges each with 4 x 6mm
countersunk bolts either side of the hinge. Drilling and positioning
this was the most difficult part of this process and required the
assistance of the neighbours. I measured, drilled and bolted the
hinges to the top, lifted the top onto the trailer and marked the
position of the hinges, and removed it again. I then used an extra
hinge as template to mark the holes on the trailer, allowing for
some tolerance I drilled 8mm holes. I then used a dab of Silastic to
hold the bolts in position and then hold the hinges closed. Once
again the neighbours were enlisted to lift the top back on while I
did up the nuts. Hopefully the pictures will help explain the
Now for the struts.
There are several considerations for the fitment of struts to the
The size and design of
kitchen or internal storage you have or are planning. This info
will give you the sidewall mount height, 50mm below the lip of
the trailer in my case, and position of the rear strut.
The total packed weight
of the camper top. 150 kg in my case. Bathroom scales under one
side give you half the weight of your top.
The height you wish to
open the top to, remembering the bedding is above.
These will give you the start point to seek a supplier of the struts
for advice on exactly what strut you require for your camper.
Next the brackets for both ends need to be fabricated and fitted.
These need to be of sufficient strength to handle the forces
involved. I used 6 x 40mm flat for my brackets and made the top
brackets 200mm long to spread the load.
I fitted the sidewall mounts and then the position of the top mounts
was dependant on the length of the struts required for the job. I
used a 30 mm spacer on my timber stay to open the top past my lock
point. Attach the strut to the sidewall mount and then mark the
location of the top mount and affix. By removing the 30mm spacer you
have the struts under tension at the open position. This means they
work or assist lifting through the whole range of the opening.
I then used three offset cam latches too lock the top down. I had to
set them off from the sidewall using 50mm gal box so they would
align correctly but this is dependant on your trailer.
thanks to Andrew
Ebb for sharing this idea