We made a few small improvements to the back of the truck bed and camping shell to make things more clean and comfortable.
Foam Insulation around the Tailgate
A friend gave us a tip that dust could creep up into the truck bed when driving on dirt roads. To prevent this, we added some foam insulation in the gap between the truck bed and tailgate.
We wanted the ability to sleep with the windows open to help ventilate the camper shell at night. We noticed one of the windows was missing a screen.
We purchased some cloth screen from the local hardware store and go to work cutting out a patch to cover the window. After struggling to find something more permanent, we ended up using duct tape to attach the new screen to the shell. While this appears to work for now, the summer heat causes the adhesive on the duct tape to fail.
Pole and Hook
We came across a post on an online forum that suggested using a long pole with a hook to fish things out wedged in the way back underneath the wooden shelf. Having once squeezed my entire body under the shelf to retrieve boots from beneath the bed, I agreed that a pole like this could come in handy.
I was able to put one together using a replacement broom handle and a storage hook from the local hardware store.
At this point we have a standard way of packing the truck (e.g. coolers here, bedding there). We ended up cutting the plywood into two pieces to make it easier to access the truck bed when we’re not sleeping. We also will remove the back most 2×4 so that the coolers can sit close to the tailgate.
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