Types of Camper Shells

Updated February 21, 2017

Placed over the top of a pickup truck bed, camper shells provide an enclosure that can be used for multiple purposes. As the name implies, camper shells have traditionally been used to turn a truck into a camping unit, however many people use camper shells to provide shelter over cargo or tools they haul.

Camper Shell Types

Different types of camper shells are available on the market today. Some types of camper shells include aluminium, fibreglass, collapsible and high-rise. High-rise camper shells are typically used for camping excursions, while aluminium, fibreglass and collapsible camper shells, in addition to camping, may also be used on an everyday basis as a truck bed covering. The chosen type of camper shell for a truck depends upon how the camper shell will be used, the amount of money truck owner wants to pay, and its compatibility with truck.

Fibreglass and Aluminum

Fibreglass and aluminium camper shells, also known as camper shell toppers, fit right over the top of a truck bed. They provide a durable enclosure for a truck bed and are custom fit to the make and model of a pickup truck; some can even be custom ordered for a specific vehicle. These types of camper shells can be used for camping trips; though they typically do not provide much headroom for campers, they are sufficient for camper's sleeping quarters. The best use for aluminium and fibreglass camper shells is to provide a waterproof covering for hauling cargo in the truck bed.

Collapsible Camper Shell

A collapsible camper shell, or a soft-top camper shell, is a camper shell that can be folded back to the front of truck bed, or removed totally, until ready to use. This type of camper shell is ideal for truck owners who want a camper shell, but want the freedom and flexibility to use an uncovered truck bed without the hassle of removing an aluminium or fibreglass camper shell. The outer skin of this type of camper shell is typically fabricated of canvas.

High-Rise Camper Shells

High-rise camper shells fit on the back of a pickup bed like aluminium, fibreglass and collapsible camper shells, but have a higher profile than these types of camper shells. Made of durable fibreglass, with the extra height, high-rise camper shells are the most suitable for camping. Some high-rise shells come equipped with an overhead light, powered either by a battery or by the truck's battery.

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About the Author

Paul Young started writing professionally in 2008. His writings have been published on various websites, including U.K. van insurance site, The Van Insurer, and its sister site, The Bike Insurer. Young focuses his writing on news articles about the motorcycle and commercial vehicle industries, environmental projects, information technology and money and finance. Young is involved in ministry.