Any Ford Superduty with OEV Aluma Tray owners out there?

Fivel

New member
Hey everybody, I'm looking at the above setup and having a hard time finding answers to a few questions. If anyone has this setup or has relevant information/considerations I'd love to hear it. Apologies, this is a long post. I figured I might as well put it all out there and hopefully learn as much as I can from the wealth of knowledge out there.

My truck is a 2020 Ford F350 with 8' bed. Other potentially-relevant details are that it's an XLT, supercab, single-rear-wheel. I have a camera in the tailgate handle and a camera in the high-mounted brakelight that points at the bed (no 360 deg camera system). I also have rear parking sensors and blind spot sensors.

I'm planning a flatbed conversion and right now I'm 90% convinced I want an Aluma Tray by OEV. I currently have a 2019 Four Wheel Camper Hawk slide-in which will mount on the tray, but may consider trading for flatbed model of some other brand in the future. For now I'm keeping the FWC Hawk slide-in and the idea of the outside access above-deck storage boxes is really growing on me.

Here are some questions hopefully someone can answer:
1) What are my options regarding retaining my rear camera? I got a quote for a flatbed saying they can relocate the tailgate camera and replace with an aftermarket one for $200. This sounds like a great price, but I was hoping to end up with something that basically looks and acts just like the OEM camera as far as the in-cab experience goes. Do aftermarket cameras play nice with the Ford system, with the range lines overlaid on the screen and everything?

2) What are my options regarding retaining parking sensors? is it as simple as just drilling new holes and mounting them into the rear face of the flatbed tray? Do they still work right afterwards?

3) I lose the blind spot monitor function, right? Is there any way around this? I've seen other tray manufacturers say the blind spot function can be kept, but examples I've found are only in Australian market and I've not seen any examples on Fords.

4) Since I have a long bed and a short slide-in, I'm trying to decide what to do with the extra space. I don't really like the look of the OEV storage boxes because they break up the available space so much. Plus they seem pretty spendy. I'm thinking I'll get she shortbed side boxes to match the camper, and for now just leave the space in front of the camper empty to see what uses I can come up with for it. I want to leave my spare tire under the tray, by the way. I don't foresee ever mounting tires big enough that a spare wouldn't fit underneath. Can anyone with this setup comment on how much space there will actually be? Based on the nominal measurements it should be 16" wide (96" flatbed minus ~80" camper next to 79.5" short side boxes) but I am curious how much the headache rack takes up.

5) Can anyone comment on potential tire clearance issues with the OEV tray? I currently have 35" tires, might eventually go as big as 37" when these wear out. Nothing crazy with suspension - I'm basically about 2" higher than the lowest stock 2020 superduty truck ride height. Is there a chance I might have fitment issues or is there enough room that I shouldn't worry about it?

6) Any input about the functionality of the tray with the camper removed? I'm not interested in the bed vs tray debate (already went down that road), but more curious about the functionality of this tray vs other overland-style trays. OEV says the max load in the tray is 3,000lbs which is a pretty big downgrade versus the truck's payload capacity, but realistically I can't think of anything I'd throw on the tray that might come close. Still, any thoughts? What are the limiting factors? Bed itself? Mounts?

7) OEV offers a 40" trundle drawer. I see pictures and videos online of some trays with giant drawers that come out around 7'! What limits the OEV drawer so short? Is there a structural reason it can't be longer?

8) Last one (for now). Those of you who have seen or owned one, what do you think of the Aluma Tray mounting system? The overland tray crowd seems to generally like spring mounts but OEV uses some kind of elastomeric mount to accommodate flex. My thinking is that considering the superduty frame is on the stiffer side, and assuming I'm staying under the 3000lb tray limit, frame flex would probably not be too much of an issue. Is that overly optimistic?
 

eyemgh

Well-known member
I know nothing about the Aluma Tray, so I can't be of any help there. I do have a tray on order though and the concept might be of interest.

My issue with a slide in on a flatbed is that the camper sits 5" higher. That creates two issues, higher COG and a big gap between the truck roof and the camper. Brent Bowen at Bowen Customs has a solution for this. He makes a great product. It's worth a call if nothing else.

As for the 16" space, I'd slam the camper to the rear and have whoever does your deck and boxes set that space up for two spares like AT is doing on the Attera.
 

taylosha

New member
I got a 2018 F250 with a 6.75ft aluma tray with storage boxes. Hopefully I can help with some questions.

For the camera I used a relocation kit from camerasource. Have it mounted on the door of the camper in about the same spot as it was in the tailgate so it still matches up with the 360 cameras.

I’ve got the rear parking sensors in mine, I think the trays have the holes already cut in them for the sensors, but I don’t think it’s vehicle specific so my sensors are kinda loose but it works.

I got rid of my blind spot sensors, I’m sure if you really wanted it with enough time and money you could figure out a way.

Ive got a hawk slide in too but a short bed so I really comment on the whole long bed with short camper, I think that OEV offers storage boxes and a spare tire mount for the headache rack area that would probably take up that space you have with the camper. I run 37s on my truck with a 4” lift, I’ve got no issues with clearance on the tray. If you plan to run 37s your not going to get a 37 spare in the stock spot without deflating the tire and really working it in there. If you plan on going 37s I would look at the spare tire holder that OEV offers.

I haven’t really taken off the camper to use the truck for hauling stuff, but I wouldn’t hesitate to haul decent loads in the back. I haven’t really thought about the payload decrease with the tray but 3000lbs is within the gvwr for my rig anyways.

The undertray drawer is kinda short but from what I was told is some trucks have a hump in their frames there and they couldn’t go all the way with it, don’t know if I truly buy that. There’s room under my truck to go all the way to the cab with that drawer.

5000+ miles with my setup so far and I have no issues with the mounting system, I’m sure there’s pros and cons with all sorts of different systems but this one seems to work well. I havent done much research into different mounting systems so I don’t think I could really discuss the topic much.

Wouldn’t hurt to find a dealer too and ask them they’ll know far more than I do, but if ya got anymore questions I’m more than happy to chat about them
 

yfarm

Observer
My 2020 F250 with the camper special package came with an additional camera and cable designed to replace the tailgate camera when a camper is mounted. Is designed to be mounted at the top of the back of the camper with the cable plugging into the bed harness. Dont have it with me to give you the part #
 

Fivel

New member
Thanks guys, I appreciate all the input.

My issue with a slide in on a flatbed is that the camper sits 5" higher. That creates two issues, higher COG and a big gap between the truck roof and the camper. Brent Bowen at Bowen Customs has a solution for this. He makes a great product. It's worth a call if nothing else.
I know, that height increase is a concern for me too. I am aware of Bowen Customs but I wasn't aware their products addressed the height increase. All the pictures I've seen look like a similar height to all the other overland-style campers to me. Can you explain more? In the current stock bed my camper is blocked up about 1" to clear the little puck antennas on the rear corners of the cab. I have no doubt I could find some use for an additional 4" above the cab to store a table or another solar panel or something, but of course lower is better and it would be nice to have the option to keep the camper as low as possible. I'll try to get in touch with him just to see.

For the camera I used a relocation kit from camerasource. Have it mounted on the door of the camper in about the same spot as it was in the tailgate so it still matches up with the 360 cameras.
Ok, I guess I didn't realize the camera would end up on the camper itself. I was hoping there was some way to move it to the tray and recalibrate it or something to make it still work. Obviously that would result in a change of perspective but at least then it would function the same whether the camper is on or off. More research might be required.

I run 37s on my truck with a 4” lift, I’ve got no issues with clearance on the tray. If you plan to run 37s your not going to get a 37 spare in the stock spot without deflating the tire and really working it in there. If you plan on going 37s I would look at the spare tire holder that OEV offers.
Carli sells a tire carrier and hitch combo called Trophy Hitch that supposedly fits a 37" in the stock location, or a 38" if you modify the exhaust. My current tires measure 34.8" and I'm guessing I can get another 15-25k miles out of them so this is not a problem I'm trying to solve just yet but it seems like there are solutions out there. I'd much prefer keeping that heavy bulky spare low and out of the way and saving the more usable space behind the cab for stuff I'd be accessing more frequently. That Trophy Hitch is big $$$ though. I think I saw it was over $2000 but I might be off about that. https://carlisuspension.com/ford-trophy-hitch/

My 2020 F250 with the camper special package came with an additional camera and cable designed to replace the tailgate camera when a camper is mounted. Is designed to be mounted at the top of the back of the camper with the cable plugging into the bed harness. Dont have it with me to give you the part #
I have seen references to the camper special package and options for another camera in my manual, but didn't realize that was how it worked. Any idea if I could do something similar if I don't have the camper package? Maybe something that could be incorporated with just the extra camera and Forscan? It seems to me if the camera must be mounted to the camper and not the tray, going as high as possible would make sense.

did you reach out to OEV for answers?
I did try contacting them a couple ways, and never heard back. I'm in contact with some of their dealer network but I have not really found anyone who seems super familiar with the product. Some of the dealers seem willing to talk to OEV on my behalf and chase down answers to some of my questions but for such an expensive product, about which I have fairly few specifics, honestly this is a little concerning. Who knows, maybe it's a fluke and my info got lost in the shuffle around the holidays. Or maybe OEV doesn't want to waste their time talking to actual customers directly. I don't think it would be fair to praise or criticize them publicly at this point but when I have feedback to share I'll do so. I'm not on Instagram but thanks for the tip - I'll try to track down some details that way.

Do you have any experience with this product? I'm curious if it still shows the overlay lines on the camera, the ones that have the projected path and the red/yellow/green "range" lines. And how does image quality compare vs the stock camera?
 
Last edited:

yfarm

Observer
I read the installation instructions that came with the camera directing you to disconnect the plug for the tailgate camera and plug this camera in, assume it is a replacement that requires no other programming to use once installed.
 

taylosha

New member
That carli trophy hitch has been teased and talked about since 2019, with supply issues and carli focusing on getting just suspension kits out I doubt we see this is the near future if at all. Besides with the Aluma Tray I’m probably going to ditch the stock hitch in favor of a custom bumper and swing out tire carrier. The stock hitch just hangs down too far for my liking and I imagine thr carli would hang down a bit further too.

On my 2018 I got the camera relocation bracket from camerasource.com so I cannibalized the camera out of my old tailgate so I still have the back up line overlay thingy. I put mine on the camper to keep the 360 camera system happy, but you could definitely have it mounted on the tray if that’s what you prefer.

Ive sent an email to OEV inquiring about some modifications to the deck and hears back from them on a reasonable timeline. So who knows what’s going on there.
 

taylosha

New member
Hey taylosha, may I ask how deep your boxes are ? The FWCs have a lower knee wall at the sides to gain space above the PU tub wheel housings, I'm, wondering if the OEV FWC specific boxes match that or are just rectangular in profile.

Does that make sense ? Thx

According to OEVs website they’re 14 inches deep. I can double check in the morning but there is still some space between the camper and the lower wall but with the turnbuckles you kinda need some space, and with the rear wall of the camper sitting flush with the boxes there’s about one inch of room on each side if that makes sense…if you get the tray boxes setup for the camp-x I think the boxes are a tad bit deeper but it wouldn’t work with a FWC and it’s rear wall

Edit: I get what your saying now, the boxes are rectangular, the space provided by the knee wall isn’t filled in with the aluma tray boxes
 

Fivel

New member
I appreciate everyone's input on this stuff. I think I said that before but I'm just so impressed with how much people are willing to share and try to help others around here.

Regarding the OEV storage boxes at the front of the bed - from what I gather, yes they do offer boxes and also tire carriers. I have not found a picture of the tire carrier (their website says "coming soon"), but they seem to be modular. In other words to fill that space you would need a box for each side, or a box and a tire carrier, or 2 tire carriers. Also, with them being modular there's no storing skis or long shovels or a bicycle or whatever. I'm sure the increased compartmentalization could help with organization but with a space that big I'd want the option maximum flexibility. I'm envisioning an open box that fills that void space, with a top-hinged canopy door on each side and tiedown tracks inside the box to secure any sort of awkward items. Maybe a tray in the bottom with drawer slides. Those type of setups are so popular in AUS I can't imagine it would be too outrageous to find someone to custom size one here.
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My current setup has my FWC completely inside the bed of my truck, with the tailgate closed while I'm driving. This is just temporary because I am traveling and don't want to leave my tailgate (and rear camera) somewhere but one downside I didn't expect was that to enter and exit the camper I have to climb up onto the tailgate, then duck down to get through the hobbit door of the FWC. I thought the foldable "porch" would be nice but now I'm thinking being porchless would be nicer most of the time. Obviously the door isn't getting any bigger but it feels less awkward when the first step outside the door is down onto a ladder or stepstool or whatever. This wouldn't be an issue with a side-entry model, which was originally what I had thought I'd go for but the more I use my setup the more I think I'll appreciate the above-deck external storage more than the additional internal storage and side entry of the flatbed-specific campers. Also with a rear-entry camper anything behind the camper has to be set up so it doesn't block camper access. With the camper slid aft and storage forward, 100% of the space can be filled. That's my thinking anyway. For me personally, I expect a lot of nights (maybe 50%?) spent in my camper are going to be short overnights on road trips, in friends' driveways, in semi-urban areas, and generally places where "making camp" would be impractical or inappropriate. The build's main purpose is for off-grid camping and hunting trips into the wild but it's still a priority that I keep the ability to park, sleep, and drive again with minimal arranging of gear.

Klakanie, can I ask what setup you're running? It sounds like you have some good experience so I'm curious how long a bed, how long a camper, flatbed or slide-in camper, etc.? And how you use it?

For more research FTE is a good source...
Thanks, I have been on FTE a fair amount but there is so much info there I'm finding it hard to sift through and find good applicable stuff. That post on the camera options is awesome info! I've been casually looking into what it would take to get a working front camera on my Sync screen, but that project is way down the line. It looks like the OP in that thread came up to a pretty simple solution to my rear camera concerns, AND there are available options to solve several other issues as well. The other post about the CANbus problems is kinda scary. I'm having problems with my closest dealer about them losing track of my scheduled recall appointment right now. Problems with them charging me money while not fixing a non-functional vehicle would be much worse.

That carli trophy hitch has been teased and talked about since 2019, ... I doubt we see this is the near future if at all.
That's too bad, seems like a great product that I think a lot of people would want. But I guess Carli isn't hurting for business. I wasn't likely to buy one anytime soon anyway, but at least their findings give me confidence that making room for a big 37" tire between the rails can be done. I'd be happy to sacrifice some towing capacity for a lighter-duty tow hitch that will make room for a 37.
 

taylosha

New member
Sounds like you’re interested in something similar to what KP over at zero declination has done.

He’s got a flatbed hawk, but I’m sure you could do a mix of what he’s got and an aluma tray, but it would most likely be a one off. I’m sure you could find someone local who would be willing to design and fab up what you want, but that probably won’t come cheap, the aluma tray alone with storage boxes is around 18-20k depending on other options. I imagine a lot of that is an overland tax of some sorts too though.
 

Fivel

New member
Wow, that looks awesome. Yeah, that setup is pretty much exactly what I was envisioning, only on a supercab Ford. I tried getting on Instagram myself a few days ago and after an hour of researching why I kept getting a vague error message (and coming up empty) I gave up. Call me a Luddite but this forum is about as social media as I want to get, and if Instagram won't even make it easy then I'm over it. I'm kinda disappointed if there's good info from some of these companies that can only be found on Instagram, but I understand too - if that's where the customers are then that's where the web presence should be. Oh well. I guess I'm becoming a grumpy old guy.
 

Fivel

New member
We had a 8' FWC Granby that still had a lot life in it, needed a new truck. Wanted: more storage, tailgate, space for 2 spares and some kind of pass thru ability between cab and camper sliders.
So you have a passthrough? You mean by opening the rear window of your cab and the front window of your Grandby, or something bigger? When I had my old Tacoma with a shell on the back I decided that I'd never own another vehicle that I couldn't get to the camper without going outside. And playing around with a couple little E-350 based Class C's only confirmed how beneficial that feature is. Terranova figured out a crawl-through so I'm assuming it's possible on my truck without ruining the structural integrity, and I haven't given up on the idea but I've resolved that I need to be well past the warranty before even considering it. But I am extremely interested in the idea of a passthrough on these trucks.

For some reason it's taken me a few days to wrap my head around your tray setup. So those upper fold-down sides, they are just bed-sides and not the doors to boxes? If I'm understanding right, that probably means that whatever you store there is probably somewhat exposed to weather, but it's probably cheaper and lighter than enclosed boxes, allows more flexibility if you ever swap to another camper, and lets you use the full space underneath, including the little spaces that otherwise would be inboard of full boxes. Is that about it? Any major downsides you've encountered? You might have just given me the inspiration for the setup I want to emulate.
 

Fivel

New member
Anyhoo, you are spot on about ingress/egress onto the same plane.
With your setup, could you just drop the tailgate all the way down? Or if not, what do you think about incorporating that ability if you were to do it again? Seems like that might be the best of both worlds - Let the tailgate down 90degrees if you want a porch, or unhook the chains and let it down all the way for easier entry if you don't need the platform.
 

beardinc

Active member
To throw another wrench into this conundrum. Overland explorer is coming out with an HD tray which will apparently allow for full utilization of trucks payload (actual numbers TBD), no 3k lb limit.

Per an Instagram post I saw recently the tray will be for 60"CA chassis trucks only.

Screenshot_20220129-054711.pngScreenshot_20220129-054739.png
 

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