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Question about the elcamino and camper


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#1 gray07

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Posted 27 June 2012 - 09:15 AM

I noticed a post on here with one of the campers up for trade, i have never owned a real elcamino, so my question is this, could a real elcamino really carry a camper this big, also it seams kind of strange the model companys would make a camper for the elcaminos and not the trucks, ive seen more real trucks with campers than elcaminos, ive never seen one. Yes ive seen the caps for elcaminos but not the big campers.

#2 Casey

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Posted 27 June 2012 - 09:18 AM

I always thought that was odd, too, and I don't ever recall seeing a 1:1 ElCo or Ranchero with a slide-in camper.

#3 monza77

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Posted 27 June 2012 - 10:27 AM

Does anyone remember the James Bond movie where they crushed an mid sixties Lincoln 4 door into a cube, dropped it into the bed of a Ranchero that then drove away while remaining level?

Edited by monza77, 27 June 2012 - 10:28 AM.


#4 TooOld

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Posted 27 June 2012 - 12:01 PM

I've owned a '59 , two '60's , a '67 , a '74 , and currently an '82 El Camino . None of them had any major mods to their suspension , only new springs and shocks . The heaviest load I ever carried was a side by side refrigerator in one of the 60's and a load of concrete blocks in the '74 . I completed the haul both times and swore I'd never do it again !
El Caminos really are cars and not 1/2 ton pickups !

#5 Guest_Johnny_*

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Posted 27 June 2012 - 02:07 PM

I saw one back in the late 70's with that type of camper. It was at a truck spring shop getting a spring replaced after having one of the heavy duty spings it was equipped with break and they had wedged a piece of 4X4 between the frame and rear axle to get it in to be repaired. He did say it was a little top heavy but had the weight distribution right.
Not much head room in them! :lol:

#6 Art Anderson

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Posted 27 June 2012 - 02:16 PM

I don't think that's a slide in camper, but rather an oversized camper shell (in other words, a topper). In the 60's, there were any number of small companies trying to capitalize on the success of Winnebago, whose first products were camper shells (toppers) for pickup trucks. Actually, the unit as depicted on the AMT '65 El Camino would have been fairly light, perhaps weighing 3-4 hundred pounds (likely built from 1x1 wood framing, with rolled aluminum siding and roof.

Art

#7 RancheroSteve

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Posted 27 June 2012 - 02:28 PM

My Ranchero had a small camper shell on it when I first saw it, but I didn't really ever think I'd use it so I let the seller have it. I've hauled a lot of various loads over the years, but I'll second what "TooOld" said. In my case, a Ranchero is just a Falcon station wagon with a little less sheet metal and glass.

#8 Chuck Most

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Posted 27 June 2012 - 02:29 PM

I've seen a few campers in El Caminos, but I'm not sure if the were true slide-in campers or just oversized shells as Art describes. I do remember the owner's manual of my long-gone 1975 mentioned that the vehicle was not designed or intended to accomodate a slide-in camper.

Edited by Michigan Madman, 27 June 2012 - 02:30 PM.


#9 Art Anderson

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Posted 28 June 2012 - 05:18 AM

I've seen a few campers in El Caminos, but I'm not sure if the were true slide-in campers or just oversized shells as Art describes. I do remember the owner's manual of my long-gone 1975 mentioned that the vehicle was not designed or intended to accomodate a slide-in camper.


Not to mention that a slide in camper with as low a roof as is on that Elky would have been very much a waste of money, without any headroom, or bumped out sidewalls to make space for a countertop, stove, icebox, and storage cabinets. Even the cabover bunk wouldn't have accommodated anyone much over the age of 12 or 13, given the very narrow structure.

I've seen a few camper shells for El Camino's and Ranchero's very similar to this one. They were merely hollow shells, unfinished on the inside, just like the much more common pickup truck topper shells. Reasonably decent for 2 adults and a couple of small children, for sleeping out in warm weather--colder than a you-know-what in the winter though (from very chilled experience!).

Art

#10 Casey

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Posted 28 June 2012 - 05:40 AM

There's some good ElCo/camper info on this page, including some pics of the camper units: http://www.elcaminoc...ad.php?p=230206

Posted Image

Posted Image

#11 TooOld

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Posted 28 June 2012 - 06:40 AM

There's some good ElCo/camper info on this page, including some pics of the camper units: http://www.elcaminoc...ad.php?p=230206

Posted Image

Posted Image


According to the post , that El Camino has " air bags in the coils and an extra pair of shocks " .
It still looks like it is dragging the rear bumper . . . No Thanks .

#12 gray07

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Posted 28 June 2012 - 10:24 AM

Those look to heavy for the elcamino

#13 cobraman

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Posted 28 June 2012 - 10:41 AM

I wouldn't want to be driving that thing and have to swerve to avoid hitting something. It looks like it could tip over.

#14 Edsel-Dan

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Posted 28 June 2012 - 05:01 PM

I believe the Larger unit in the 65 El Camino kit was originally in the
First issue 59 wasn't it??
I seem to remember it on the original issue box art.

i have an Older issue of the 65 with it. and it does appear to fit the 59 too.

I do agree, I am not sure about mounting one in an El Camino

#15 Aaronw

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Posted 28 June 2012 - 05:49 PM

Does anyone remember the James Bond movie where they crushed an mid sixties Lincoln 4 door into a cube, dropped it into the bed of a Ranchero that then drove away while remaining level?


Goldfinger

#16 Mark

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Posted 29 June 2012 - 01:42 PM

I believe the Larger unit in the 65 El Camino kit was originally in the
First issue 59 wasn't it??
I seem to remember it on the original issue box art.

i have an Older issue of the 65 with it. and it does appear to fit the 59 too.

I do agree, I am not sure about mounting one in an El Camino

The tall "slide-in" unit first appeared in the original annual issue of the '65 El Camino kit. It later turned up in one issue of the '59 El Camino (not the first issue, but rather the third, in 1968). It doesn't really fit the '59 very well. The smaller "topper" in some issues of the '65 kit first appeared in the "Gear Hustler" construction company themed issue, around 1972. That one might fit the '59, but the '59 was never issued with that one.

#17 Edsel-Dan

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Posted 29 June 2012 - 09:54 PM

OK, Thanks for that info.
My first 65 was the Gear Hustler. Stock only parts, Open rims the Topper/Cap

I did test fit my larger slide-in unit and it did not fit the 59 as well as it does the 65.
I though AMT may have modified it before including it in the 65, but since I don't really remember the 59 kit
before the mid 70's re-issue, I was only guessing.

I am curious though. With all the re-issued of th e65 that included the topper,
and the M-K re-issues of the 72 Blazer having all the Crew-Chief parts, why did none of the
El Camino re-issues have the Hustler parts? Hard Hats, 6-pack bear/soda cans, etc??

#18 Mark

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Posted 30 June 2012 - 04:52 AM

I am curious though. With all the re-issued of th e65 that included the topper,
and the M-K re-issues of the 72 Blazer having all the Crew-Chief parts, why did none of the
El Camino re-issues have the Hustler parts? Hard Hats, 6-pack bear/soda cans, etc??

I've got a Street Rods series reissue '65 (the first issue immediately after the Gear Hustler). It has the stock wheels and custom parts restored to the kit, and has the Gear Hustler's topper instead of the slide-in camper. I believe that issue has the hard hats and six-pack, though they aren't shown in the instructions. Those items would have been tooled along with the topper, so they are close together on the parts trees.
To make it more authentic for the construction company I worked for in the Eighties, there would have been several six-packs included, most of them loose/crushed cans tossed through a sliding rear cab window into the bed...

#19 espo

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Posted 30 June 2012 - 07:04 AM

I have owned two 1:1 El Caminos in the past. They were great for my us and would love to have another. My 1967 396 4spd El Camino was new and I used it as a gas station service truck for the most part. The heaviest load I can remember was a one time deal picking up four 55 gal. drums of anti freeze at the distribition center. Other than about 90 psi in the factory air shocks and tieing off the drums (standing upright) it was a slow drive back to work, about 20 miles. I would not recamend this big of load unless the rear suspension had a lot of work first. But when your young and dum what the heck. In the '65 El Camino Gear Hustler that I built it had a "topper" or cab high type shell that looks like it was made of alumminum. If you were to sand it smoth and round off the roof edges it could be made to look like a fiberglass shell. I think this would be more common for the time. My second 1:1 El Camino was a '66 that I picked up in about '87 or '88. It was a driveer at best, but I did find an old fiberglass shell in the local Autotrader. With much polishing with boat fiberglass products and Brasso for the window trim it looked very nice. It was on the El Camino when it was stolen in '89.

#20 darquewanderer

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Posted 30 June 2012 - 11:14 PM

Goldfinger

1961 Falcon Rancero.