Introducing the “NEW” Alu-Cab Canopy Camper

abenteur_co

New member
Before you go splicing into anything does you brake light on the camper work? If the light works then the ground for the camper is good and I'd just leave it as is no need to spice into anything.

The pink wire is a very small gauge wire and won't be able to support grounding for everything. I would still ground out the battery to the chassis with a large gauge wire like 4 awg.
Yes, the brake light on the camper works.

Is your camper powered by your truck battery or an independent house battery? If truck battery then makes sense why no tie into the pink wire as your truck battery will be connected to your chassis as well and that completes the circuit. Curious how those with a house battery system are completing the circuit for the built in systems; it must either be "grounding" the house system to chassis or connecting the house system to the pink negative. IMO the brake light should have a separate negative to make this all easier.

Point taken that the pink probably shouldn't be the sole negative connection to the chassis since if a big load chose that path for whatever reason then it could overheat (although I'm not sure if one ever would, curious to hear what others think there).
 

Mtpisgah

Active member
We picked up the Gladiator with AluCab Canopy Camper installed Thursday of last week. Friday we took of for its inaugural overlanding trip. We love it! It is so much nicer than ground camping, fast up and fast down. The second night we were on a ridge with heavy winds and though it was about 25deg F out, we could not feel the wind at all, unlike had we been in a ground tent. An electric blanket helped.

We are trying to figure out the bike carrying since the rack rubs on some trails. i am considering the back door spare tire mount with a spare tire receiver attached to it (http://www.gamiviti.com/spare-receivers ) or having something custom fabricated. I am a little concerned about the cantilevered weight on the door, what do you guys thing? For regular around the town use I will probably get a RakAttach or Kuat Pivot swing out rack.

The Expedition Essentials stove is still on order, hopefully it will be in next week.

We are trying to figure out a good use for the wasted area between the back of the cab and front of the canopy. I considered pulling one of the gussets off and sliding the traction boards in and figuring a way to mount them, then replace the gusset. This would be a great way to get them out of the way, just have to hope I do not need to use them often. If not this, maybe water tanks or just put the dirty cloths in a mesh bag and stuff it through the back cab window. Has anyone done something similar?
 

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Phreak480

Army Guy
We picked up the Gladiator with AluCab Canopy Camper installed Thursday of last week. Friday we took of for its inaugural overlanding trip. We love it! It is so much nicer than ground camping, fast up and fast down. The second night we were on a ridge with heavy winds and though it was about 25deg F out, we could not feel the wind at all, unlike had we been in a ground tent. An electric blanket helped.

We are trying to figure out the bike carrying since the rack rubs on some trails. i am considering the back door spare tire mount with a spare tire receiver attached to it (http://www.gamiviti.com/spare-receivers ) or having something custom fabricated. I am a little concerned about the cantilevered weight on the door, what do you guys thing? For regular around the town use I will probably get a RakAttach or Kuat Pivot swing out rack.

The Expedition Essentials stove is still on order, hopefully it will be in next week.

We are trying to figure out a good use for the wasted area between the back of the cab and front of the canopy. I considered pulling one of the gussets off and sliding the traction boards in and figuring a way to mount them, then replace the gusset. This would be a great way to get them out of the way, just have to hope I do not need to use them often. If not this, maybe water tanks or just put the dirty cloths in a mesh bag and stuff it through the back cab window. Has anyone done something similar?
How do you find the Gladiator handles with the added weight on the back? Did you do any suspension mods to compensate? I'm shopping for a Rubicon diesel Gladiator and am gonna hang the Canopy Camper in the bed.

As for the space between the canopy and the back of the jeep top, I know they make the water tank to fit there, but I want to try and find 2 smaller tanks and leave a gap in the middle and add a small window to the front of the canopy and then do some pass through gasket and be able to have an opening between the cab and the canopy to get a little heat or AC moving back there when on the road. Then I figure my dog might be able to ride back there when the whole family is in the cab as we will be 4 people.
 

blake92242

Member
Yes, the brake light on the camper works.

Is your camper powered by your truck battery or an independent house battery? If truck battery then makes sense why no tie into the pink wire as your truck battery will be connected to your chassis as well and that completes the circuit. Curious how those with a house battery system are completing the circuit for the built in systems; it must either be "grounding" the house system to chassis or connecting the house system to the pink negative. IMO the brake light should have a separate negative to make this all easier.

Point taken that the pink probably shouldn't be the sole negative connection to the chassis since if a big load chose that path for whatever reason then it could overheat (although I'm not sure if one ever would, curious to hear what others think there).
My camper is powered by a second battery (BCDC Red Arc Off Grid Engineering Kit) in the engine bay that is grounded to the chassis. I have the pink wire connected to the bus bar on the panel which connects to the battery in the engine bay. All negatives have to be connected to the bus bar through a shunt to get the BMV-712 to read correctly. That's why I have it connected that way. You may be right though. It may not work because your house battery in the truck bed isn't grounded to the chassis. Hope I helped a little. It's all hard to explain over text. haha
 

abenteur_co

New member
My camper is powered by a second battery (BCDC Red Arc Off Grid Engineering Kit) in the engine bay that is grounded to the chassis. I have the pink wire connected to the bus bar on the panel which connects to the battery in the engine bay. All negatives have to be connected to the bus bar through a shunt to get the BMV-712 to read correctly. That's why I have it connected that way. You may be right though. It may not work because your house battery in the truck bed isn't grounded to the chassis. Hope I helped a little. It's all hard to explain over text. haha
You helped a ton, thank you! I got it all working this evening. For anyone that has a similar problem (house battery not tied into their truck system/grounded to chassis) here was my solution.

1. If your install had the pink wire tied into your brake lights (so that the camper brake light would work), I cut that pink wire in the wire channel so that there was a short run left from the wire channel down to the brake light tie in.
2. From the back of the camper brake light there is a black wire that runs to the main camper harness. Slice into the outer shielding to reveal the red and black / positive and negative wires for the brake light. Cut the black and run a splice from that (on the light side of the cut) to the short run of the pink wire you left in place that runs to your truck brake lights. Camper brake light should now work again.
3. Take the long end of the pink wire you cut from the truck brake light connection and run that to your switch panel or house battery box (may need to splice in a bit of wire to make it reach) and connect to your negative bus bar. All built in lights and USBs should now work.
 
Does anyone here have a Canopy Camper mounted on a 2nd Gen Tacoma by any chance?

I am finally digging into my electrical and came across a strange issue. I reached out to my dealer, but they haven't got back to me yet. When I remove the rear panels on the back, I only have one access hole on the bottom to remove my taillights and I am pretty sure the last time I was digging into my taillights to change a bulb I had to remove bolts top & bottom. There is zero access to where the top bolt would be and as you can see in the picture below, One of the two bolts you can see through the access hole (which I am pretty sure needs removed to access the taillight) is only 3/4 exposed, so I can't get a socket, wrench or anything else on it. It's the same problem on both sides of the truck.

@rino is there something wrong here?
 

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blake92242

Member
Does anyone here have a Canopy Camper mounted on a 2nd Gen Tacoma by any chance?

I am finally digging into my electrical and came across a strange issue. I reached out to my dealer, but they haven't got back to me yet. When I remove the rear panels on the back, I only have one access hole on the bottom to remove my taillights and I am pretty sure the last time I was digging into my taillights to change a bulb I had to remove bolts top & bottom. There is zero access to where the top bolt would be and as you can see in the picture below, One of the two bolts you can see through the access hole (which I am pretty sure needs removed to access the taillight) is only 3/4 exposed, so I can't get a socket, wrench or anything else on it. It's the same problem on both sides of the truck.

@rino is there something wrong here?
I'd reach out to @discovering_unknowns on instagram. He has a 2nd gen taco with a ACCC on it. He would know!
 

Mtpisgah

Active member
How do you find the Gladiator handles with the added weight on the back? Did you do any suspension mods to compensate? I'm shopping for a Rubicon diesel Gladiator and am gonna hang the Canopy Camper in the bed.

As for the space between the canopy and the back of the jeep top, I know they make the water tank to fit there, but I want to try and find 2 smaller tanks and leave a gap in the middle and add a small window to the front of the canopy and then do some pass through gasket and be able to have an opening between the cab and the canopy to get a little heat or AC moving back there when on the road. Then I figure my dog might be able to ride back there when the whole family is in the cab as we will be 4 people.
the Mojave suspension being a bit softer than other trim levels, it is squatting more than is ideal. I plan to install (or try to install) bags on the back this weekend but I fear it will not be enough. I have started looking at 2 and 2.5” lifts to address the sag. I spoke to the guys at Clayton today and that is what they recommended. Other than sag and some bottoming out in driveways, it still handles great on the highway and Offroad, which was a little surprising giving the driveway effect.

i was referring to the gap between the cab and the canopy. All the pictures I have seen of the water tank have It placed in the canopy, thus leaving the gap unused. There has to be a way to use it.
 
the Mojave suspension being a bit softer than other trim levels, it is squatting more than is ideal. I plan to install (or try to install) bags on the back this weekend but I fear it will not be enough. I have started looking at 2 and 2.5” lifts to address the sag. I spoke to the guys at Clayton today and that is what they recommended. Other than sag and some bottoming out in driveways, it still handles great on the highway and Offroad, which was a little surprising giving the driveway effect.

i was referring to the gap between the cab and the canopy. All the pictures I have seen of the water tank have It placed in the canopy, thus leaving the gap unused. There has to be a way to use it.
I agree completely. This area between the cab/camper is definitely wasted space in the design and I have been pretty focused on mounting something in there. I have considered that spot for the water tank & it has been done on at least one Tacoma install I know. There is fella on YT (https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCbZCCPuCQlEHLDyUyjuoGLQ) that has done it using one of the Front Runner flat tanks. He doesn't have any real details on the install in the videos he has posted though.
 

Phreak480

Army Guy
the Mojave suspension being a bit softer than other trim levels, it is squatting more than is ideal. I plan to install (or try to install) bags on the back this weekend but I fear it will not be enough. I have started looking at 2 and 2.5” lifts to address the sag. I spoke to the guys at Clayton today and that is what they recommended. Other than sag and some bottoming out in driveways, it still handles great on the highway and Offroad, which was a little surprising giving the driveway effect.

i was referring to the gap between the cab and the canopy. All the pictures I have seen of the water tank have It placed in the canopy, thus leaving the gap unused. There has to be a way to use it.
Totally different vehicle but I added air helpers on an 03 ram 1500 years ago after I put in a nice soft 6" lift kit. It really did an amazing job of preventing rear sag when loaded down.

Yes I know they make the water tank to fit inside the canopy camper but there had bene talk of it also mounting in that front gap on some vehicles as well. Although don't ask me where the hell I saw that info because I sure can't recall. I may engineer my own solution based on my desire to try and fit a window in the middle.
 
Okay all you wiring wizards, I have question I am hoping someone can clear me up on. My panel is being put together in a slightly different version of parts than most b/c of some of the parts I already had before switching camper platforms. I already had a Blue Sea Power Distribution Hub (model 5026) so instead of going with one of the Weather Deck switch panels that have resettable breakers, I bought the one that didn't as my hub will provide protection for each circuit. It has a negative common bus built in. Picture below:

IMG_5940 copy.jpg

Therefore as I understand it on the Blue Sea instructions, I would want to hook the two power leads from the switch panel (the red wires sticking up in the picture below) to main positive terminal of the hub (since that is the hot wire coming direct from the battery). And then each switch on the panel would run to a + circuit on the hub, along with the positive wiring coming in from each "device" requiring power, which is where it get confusing since both would have to be wired into the same hook up. The negative from the device then would tie into the hub's negative common buss. Will this work?

I feel like I am maybe trying to combine the wrong two products, but just looking to see if I can make it work. I thought my hub would eliminate the need for the + or - Buss bars I see being used in the typical install, but maybe I still need one?? Any direction is appreciated.

IMG_5941 copy.jpg
 

Mtpisgah

Active member
I agree completely. This area between the cab/camper is definitely wasted space in the design and I have been pretty focused on mounting something in there. I have considered that spot for the water tank & it has been done on at least one Tacoma install I know. There is fella on YT (https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCbZCCPuCQlEHLDyUyjuoGLQ) that has done it using one of the Front Runner flat tanks. He doesn't have any real details on the install in the videos he has posted though.
i will check it out.
 

Mtpisgah

Active member
Totally different vehicle but I added air helpers on an 03 ram 1500 years ago after I put in a nice soft 6" lift kit. It really did an amazing job of preventing rear sag when loaded down.

Yes I know they make the water tank to fit inside the canopy camper but there had bene talk of it also mounting in that front gap on some vehicles as well. Although don't ask me where the hell I saw that info because I sure can't recall. I may engineer my own solution based on my desire to try and fit a window in the middle.
I was going to install bags this weekend but could not slip in to the coils gaps and did not want to actually remove the coils. It goes to the shop Wednesday for them to do it. I decided thst even with the bags, it will probably get a 2”-2,5” loft in the next month.

Six inch lift! What size tires?

right now we are going back and forth between squeezing in a water tank, the traction boards, or the dirty stinky clothes.
 

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