I am a long time RV'er. I have owned van conversions to 45 foot diesel pushers. I have owned a dozen or so slide in campers with many different truck configurations carrying them.
I decided to go back to a truck camper because of the room and comfort provided in the Host Mammoth design. This is an extremely well thought out camper. It is very conducive to providing all the comfort I am used to in a larger motorhome when I spend extended time traveling. Yet the compact package (compared to a large class A towing a car) is very nice in that it allow snap decisions on pulling into places without the need to plan well ahead for entry and exit strategy as well as where to park. The other benefit is I can usually fit in to any campground space.
I decided on the F350 mainly because it is the only company that actually tests for Truck campers and it offers by far and away the most and best technology in this class of truck. I am very aware of the GVW issues this camper and truck combination sets forth. I dont want to open that debate. Personally I have many many miles worth of experience with campers and over GVW trucks. I am very comfortable in the individual components ratings and ability to carry this heavier load with the one exception being tires. I would never want to run overloaded tires. I do not tow but if I did tow anything with tongue weight I would not do it with this camper on the truck. The Truck is a loaded up King Ranch crew cab 4x4 6.7 engine. Its as heavy as you can build it. The Camper is also the heaviest you can build it. My Mammoth has a dry weight of 4900lbs. I have the heaviest most optioned up Mammoth that they have built. The truck full of fuel with DW and myself in it as well as a fully loaded camper including full propane and water tank scaled out at 15,500lbs. This represents the heaviest configuration possible. I could lighten that up by 800 lbs or so real easy.
I added Torklift uppers and I installed Firestone Airbags with the in Cab controls. Experience with all the different combinations available have led me to these two as the ideal setup for a Ford Truck. Another advantage of the Ford truck is it allows the Airbags to mount outboard of the frame rails where the Chevy and Dodge must mount inboard and that makes a huge difference in the stability provided by the air bags. These two trucks would require the addition of a Hellwig stabilizer bar.
My 2019 Host has every option on the list plus 3 solar panels, Winegard Trav'ler, 4 lifeline agm 6 volt batteries, 2nd inverter/charger- Magnum with Battery monitor, See Level tank gauges, the TV's where changed out to a 40 and 32 inch in bed area. I also had custom graphic colors to match the truck.
I purchased the camper from Tom's Camperland in Mesa AZ. I dealt with Brad the owner. I must say He is the most genuine and helpful person I have ever done business with. I drove from Seattle to Mesa in order to do business with him. Brad was very focused and easily accommodated all my requests add on's. He did everything he said he would without having to hound him about a single item or detail. These guys are terrific and I would not think of buying from anyone else. It also doesn't hurt that he is the largest selling dealer for Host.
I have just completed a 1 month 2200 mile, 1 month trip in my new Host Mammoth and my New Ford F350 King Ranch. I drove from Phoenix to the LA coast and drove hwy 1 and 101 all the way to Washington state. The biggest issue I had was the factory had put a screw through my Winegard Trav'ler coax where it penetrated the roof. This was an easy fix. There were a few other minor tweaks but nothing worth talking about.
I spent most of the time in State campgrounds without any hook ups. The 3 Solar panels performed very well. They kept up with my batteries charge most days. I use an above normal amount of amps. I keep the inverter on all day and night and it has an idle draw of about 2 amps/hr or 48 amp/hrs per day. My TV and Satellite antenna as well as my Direct TV box draw a good bit of amps each day as well. I also run a CPAP machine all night long.
I wanted the 2 bed outlets wired into the inverter by the Factory but Randall refused to do it. When I visited the Factory I studied the wiring methods used so I would know how to modify things to my desires. All the outlets are feed by one breaker. They wire the left side outlets including the basement where the inverter charger is plugged into, with a single daisy chained wire. Another single daisy chained wire is used for the right side including the refrigerator outlet. A third wire is used to power the outlets by the bed. All three wires are brought to a junction box located behind the power panel. These wires are all tied together with wire nuts and and then feed from the breaker box. I simply isolated the wire the runs to the bed outlets and tied it to a new wire I ran from the junction box to the basement and into the inverter 120v outlet side. One of the advantages of using the Magnum inverter/charger is that it will automatically internally switch and pass shore power through and shut down the inverter when it senses shore power. The factory inverter does not do this. It is always running off your batteries. The factory Charger will not program for AGM batteries so it had to be replaced with a programmable Charger any way.
The one huge concern I had was how we were going to fit out STUFF into a camper after being in a 45 motorhome. We packed everything up in boxes and containers that we thought we needed as a minimum. It filled up the entire back of the truck under the tonneau cover. Plus we had stuff in the back seat area as well. I just knew we would never fit all this in when we got down to Mesa. Not only did all fit but we had empty space in most all cabinets including the basement pull out. We were amazed by the amount storage space this camper really gives you.
The Truck handled the camper better than any I have ever had. I really put it to the challenge. If any of you have run the 1 up the California coast you know how mountainous and curvy it really is. The truck carried this camper with hardly any rocking and it handled the curves with ease. What I did not expect was how terribly rough and uneven parts of the road where. There were some spots so bad that it would launch vehicles ahead of me into a bad porpoising. If I were planning to run roads like that again I would change by shocks and put a set of Bilsteins on the truck. The stock shocks are a bit outmatched for that rough of a road.
Another surprise I had was with the stability while on jacks. I have owned several Lance campers and I always had to drop the floor down on blocks stacked on the ground in order to minimize the wobble. The Host was stable while on jacks even if it was elevated some. I have never had a truck camper that was that stable while on jacks alone. Overall I could not be more pleased with my purchase of the Host. It has meet all my expectations and then some. Host.jpg 81.62KB 2 downloads