Gear up for 2016 with truck camping necessities

Purchasing your first truck camper is exhilarating—there’s the anticipation of taking it on the road for the first time and the thought of spending long weekends in your new home away from home. It’s an exciting time in your life; however, preparing for a truck camper can also get a little overwhelming because it’s necessary to secure your truck camper before you can use it.

If you’re a truck camper newbie, we want to make life a little simpler for you by sharing a few tricks of the trade and by highlighting some of our favorite products to answer your questions about how best to hold down a truck camper.

The Three T’s: How to Successfully Secure Your Truck Camper
Those new to truck camping are often unclear about how to hold down a truck camper. Here, we list our “Three T’s” for doing just that. Keep these in mind as you’re preparing for your new addition.

truck camping necessities1Frame-mounting tie downs shown in yellow for contrast#1) Tie Downs
One of the first accessories you’ll need to purchase for your truck camper is truck camper tie downs. Tie downs are part of a system to secure the truck camper to its vehicle using either a frame-mounted or bed-mounted design. If you aren’t sure which to use, Torklift International recommends using frame-mounted tie downs as opposed to bed-mounted tie downs.

The benefits of attaching the tie down system to the frame of your truck:

• Dramatic improvement with vehicle handling 
• Provides safety, security and stability while on the road 
• Avoid bed and bumper damage: truck camping necessities2
• Maintain the value of your truck and prevent rust and bed damage by avoiding drilling into your truck bed or bumper

The truck bed is not a secure point for a tie down to attach. Using this method may result in paint damage and truck bed flexing and cracking. Vehicle manufacturers recommend that truck campers should be directly attached to the vehicle frame structure and that no additional holes be drilled through the vehicle frame. See the details here.

#2) Turnbuckles
Truck camper tie downs are important, but tie downs alone won’t secure your camper—you’ll also need a set of turnbuckles to complete the system. Now, you might be scratching your head and thinking to yourself—what in the world are turnbuckles? Don’t worry—it takes time to get used to the truck camping lingo. Turnbuckles, which can confusingly be referred to as tie downs as well, connect the truck camper to the truck and tie down system for maximum stability. There are many different designs of turnbuckles. Below we’ll highlight a few of these—like the FastGun Quick-Disconnect turnbuckle and the SpringLoad XL—to help you decide which turnbuckle is right for you. truck camping necessities3How to attach a truck camper to a truck

#3) Tension
Often, tension is a bad thing—if your spouse comes home from work and you ask how their day went and they answer, “Tense,”—you can almost guarantee that something unpleasant has happened and they may not be in a good mood. With truck camping, tension is actually a good thing—especially when it comes to turnbuckles. Camper manufacturers recommend that 300 truck camping necessities4Torklift's spring tension indicator makes adjusting turnbuckles easypounds of tension be applied to the turnbuckle in order to properly secure the camper. When you’re shopping for your new truck camping gear, don’t settle for any old camper turnbuckles—make sure to purchase spring-loaded turnbuckles. The spring system will help absorb shock you encounter with bumps along the road. It will also help protect the anchor points on your truck camper and tie down system.

Click here to learn how the spring tension indicator on Torklift’s truck camper turnbuckles make it extremely easy to achieve the perfect amount of tension every time. 

Now that you know the Three T’s, it’s time to start looking for a solid turnbuckle.

The Famous FastGun: A Quick Disconnect, Spring-loaded Favorite
The Original FastGun turnbuckle is like the Olympic gold medalist of turnbuckles. It’s the #1 selling quick-disconnect turnbuckle in the world. FastGun turnbuckles require no tools; instead, they’re designed with a lever action handle that makes connecting or disconnecting a breeze. In fact, you can install a set of four in under four minutes. With the FastGun, installing turnbuckles or learning how to adjust turnbuckles couldn’t be easier.

truck camping necessities5FastGuns come in several finishesAll FastGun turnbuckles are made from high impact powder-coated stainless steel, and are available in long and short sizes to be compatible with both frame-mounted tie downs and bed-mounted tie down applications. Each FastGun comes in a set of two, and you can choose from a selection of high impact powder coated bright white, grey, black or stainless steel polished finishes. FastGun turnbuckles are backed by Torklift International’s legendary lifetime warranty and are proudly made in the USA.


truck camping necessities6Finally, FastGun turnbuckles are spring-loaded, and they come with our patented spring tension indicator or “o-ring”, which allows you to quickly determine whether or not you have applied the right amount of tension. They are also 100 percent lockable with the addition of FastGun locks. So go ahead and let the stress melt away—you can’t go wrong with the FastGun spring-loaded turnbuckles.



Additional Turnbuckles for Truck Campers
If the FastGun turnbuckle takes the Gold, the SpringLoad XL turnbuckle takes the Silver. The SpringLoad XL is designed specifically for frame-mounted tie downs. It’s made of aircraft grade aluminum and stainless steel and also comes in a set of two. Spring tension indicators ensure that tension has been properly applied. The SpringLoad XL is hand-tightened when installing or adjusting the turnbuckle, but it can be done in a matter of minutes. truck camping necessities7SpringLoad XL turnbuckle

truck camping necessities8Basic SpringLoad KitThe Basic SpringLoad turnbuckle is a basic chain turnbuckle application. It comes with two quick links, two heavy-duty forged steel turnbuckles and 24” of marine grade chain. The Basic SpringLoad also protects both the vehicle and the camper anchor points from damage.

Both the SpringLoad XL and the Basic SpringLoad are proudly made in the USA and backed by Torklift International’s legendary lifetime warranty.

Already have a set of camper turnbuckles? You can turn any set of camper turnbuckles—including the SpringLoad XL or Basic SpringLoad—into a quick-disconnect turnbuckle with the addition of a Derringer Handle.

Check out the video below to compare the various turnbuckle models: 

Start the New Year Right with Torklift Turnbuckles
In the rush of the holidays, it’s easy to put off buying equipment for your truck camper. But spring will be here before you know it and as the road beckons, you’ll wish you hadn’t waited. Why not prepare for your truck camper now?

Be sure to start the New Year with all the truck camping accessories you need. Click here for more information on the FastGun turnbuckle or find a dealer near you by searching our Where to Buy locater.



Jenica headshotWritten by Jenica Donahue:
Jenica holds a B.F.A. in Creative Writing from the University of North Carolina Wilmington. She is a freelance writer interested in blogging, copy writing and editing. She enjoys exploring new places and hiking in the Pacific Northwest.

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Don’t miss this deal! Now’s the time to upgrade your rig

Attention truck camping enthusiasts! Looking to upgrade your rig? With a special offer to kick off camping season, now is a perfect time to invest in truck camping gear that will last a lifetime.  

With this offer, outfit your truck with Talon Tie Downs and FastGun turnbuckles and you’ll receive $15 off StableLoads and free FastGun Locks upon warranty registration.

Here’s how to gear up for camping season:


Frame-Mounted Talon Tie Downsaluminum-tie-downTalon military grade aluminum Tie Down
(actual design varies by application)

Engineered with precision and built to withstand even the toughest conditions, the Talons are 100 percent military grade aluminum alloy. Talon truck camper tie downs are up to 50 percent lighter than steel tie downs, are anti-corrosive and rust resistant. Stronger than steel, the Talons are backed by a lifetime warranty that covers rust-free, corrosion protection on its finish.

With the Talon’s ultra lightweight military grade aluminum composition, weight is no longer a sensitive factor when it comes to truck camping. A Tie Down Finishing Kit is included with each set of tie downs to protect from debris when the tie downs are not in use.

FastGun Turnbuckles 
b2ap3_thumbnail_fastgun-finishes-final.pngTorklift FastGun turnbuckles come in four finishes
Equipped with a set of front and rear Talon Tie Downs, the next step is upgrading your camper turnbuckles to the number one selling fastest and most convenient turnbuckle application available. The FastGun turnbuckles have a quick-disconnect lever action handle, are 100 percent tool free, 100 percent stainless steel and aluminum, spring-loaded with tension indicators and installs in less than 4 minutes.

With a frame-mounted tie down system, you need two sets of Long Range FastGun turnbuckles. The Long Range style reaches from 25 to 43 inches. To adjust the length, simply twist.

Choose from stainless steel polished or for less finish maintenance choose stainless steel high impact powder coated bright white, gray or black for your desired application. Click here to learn more about the FastGun turnbuckle.

Get free FastGun Locks to secure your new truck camper turnbuckles by registering your legendary lifetime warranty for all of your new truck camping gear.  

Truck suspension for campers
b2ap3_thumbnail_stableload-display.pngStableLoads engaged and disengaged
With Talons Tie Downs and FastGuns turnbuckles, your truck and camper are the pinnacle of strength and stability. With an outfitted vehicle, upgrade the truck suspension to improve handling when your camper is loaded.

Lower StableLoads are adjustable and can be quickly turned off and on by a simple engage/disengage. Your vehicle’s smooth factory ride is not affected when your camper isn’t loaded and the StableLoads are switched off. Activate the StableLoads before you load the camper and don’t worry about white knuckle driving during your road trip.

Register your legendary lifetime warranty here and enjoy the benefits of this limited time offer.  Remember when you use the FastGun turnbuckles with Torklift frame-mounted tie downs the lifetime warranty extends to the truck frame and camper anchor points for the extent of its manufacturer warranty. For warranty details, give us a call at 800.246.8132.

Truck camping newbie? Be sure to read our article on six steps you shouldn’t skip when prepping for a truck camper. To learn more about redeeming this truck camping deal, visit

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11 reasons why the FastGun turnbuckle is the No.1 turnbuckle in the world

If you are just getting started in the world of truck camping, you’ll be faced to make some decisions on how you want to go about hauling your new investment. Things you should consider are safety, stability and convenience so you can thoroughly enjoy the truck camping lifestyle.


To hold down your camper, the type of tie down and turnbuckle you choose is important. If you are still considering what type of tie downs to use, make sure to read our editorial on how to prevent bed damage while hauling a truck camper. If you’ve selected a tie down system, what’s the next step in determining what you need to haul a truck camper?

Our 11 reasons why the FastGun turnbuckle is the number one selling turnbuckle in the world will provide some valuable insight.

Turnbuckles are critical in connecting your truck and truck camper to its tie down system. When it comes to turnbuckles, you might be wondering what design will work best for your application. The Torklift International FastGun turnbuckle is the best turnbuckle available.

Here’s why:

1) Installs in just 4 minutes
As the fastest turnbuckle application available, you will not find a more convenient turnbuckle on the market.  Other applications may require tools and adjustment, forcing you to spend up to 30 minutes to secure your camper. Once assembled, adjustment of the FastGuns only takes 4 minutes.

Take a look at how to install a camper turnbuckle in this quick video:

2) Quick-disconnect handle for ease of use
The disconnect feature of the Torklift International FastGun makes adjustment extraordinarily quick and easy. After inserting the hook bolt of the turnbuckle into the camper anchor point, the lever action handle allows for you to simply snap down to secure your turnbuckle to your camper and make sure it is properly tensioned.

Turnbuckles by Torklift International

3) 100% tool freeb2ap3_thumbnail_toolfree.png
Go ahead and toss those pliers and crescent wrench aside. This truck camper turnbuckle is completely hassle-free and does not require any tools to make minor adjustments. Simply twist the turnbuckle to adjust its length.

4) Set it and forget it
Once your FastGun turnbuckle is adjusted to the proper length, the turnbuckles remain set at the length you’ve chosen, requiring little to no further adjustment. The FastGun also comes with stickers for you to mark their proper location. Mark whether they are driver or passenger, front or back position to allow easy re-installation. b2ap3_thumbnail_fg-stick.png
FastGun Turnbuckle labels indicate turnbuckle position on your vehicle

5) Made in America from quality materials
The body of the turnbuckle is made from 100% stainless steel. The lever-action handle is made from aircraft grade aluminum. Due to the durability of these materials, each FastGun turnbuckle boasts a pull down rating of 2,500 pounds . With four of these turnbuckles securing your camper, you can be confident your camper is stable while on the road.

6) Multiple applications
Although Torklift recommends a frame-mounted tie down system to secure a truck camper, the FastGun turnbuckles can be used with both frame-mounted and bed-mounted tie down systems. Torklift does not make a bed-mounted tie down system but other brands do.

Long Range FastGuns are made for frame-mounted tie downs with a reach of 25 to 43 inches. These are also used for rear bumper mounted tie downs.

Long Range FastGun turnbuckle

The Short Range or “.45” style is designed for bed-mounted tie downs with a reach of 14.5 to 21.5 inches.  
Short Range FastGun turnbuckle

7) Sping-loadedb2ap3_thumbnail_potholes.png
In order to prevent damage to the anchor points on your camper, the FastGun turnbuckles are spring-loaded to allow some give when your vehicle encounters uneven road conditions. Torklift strongly recommends using spring-loaded turnbuckles on all four points of the camper because the spring design acts as a shock absorber. This protects the tie down system and camper anchor points from damage.

8) Guarantee proper tension
The FastGun turnbuckle features patented spring tension indicators to ensure proper installation and tension to hold down the camper.

Patented spring tension indicator

It is very important to apply the correct amount of tension when tightening your FastGun turnbuckles. With the spring tension indicator, be confident the tension is correct every time. Torklift are the only turnbuckles with patented O-ring tension indicators.

9) Locking capability
Lock your FastGun turnbuckles with Torklift FastGun Locks. A set of four locks is needed to secure your FastGuns and prevent theft. The locking turnbuckle feature allows you to protect your investment and enjoy a worry-free experience on the road.

FastGun locks for truck camper turnbuckles

With a snap lock design, the locks are keyed alike for convenience. Protective weather caps prevent weather damage and road grime.  

10) Personalize with a variety of finishes
To match your camper and provide a variety of choices, the FastGun turnbuckles come in several finishes. The turnbuckles are precision made and high impact powder-coated.
       -  Stainless Steel Polished (Top choice among customers
       -  Stainless Steel Hammertone Black 
       -  Stainless Steel Hammertone Grey 
       -  Stainless Steel Hammertone Bright White

FastGun turnbuckles available in a variety of finishes

11) The Torklift brand promise
Torklift is the single manufacturer of this unique style turnbuckle. What makes the Torklift brand important? The Torklift name is indicative of an American-made product that supports the American economy and its families.

It also means that our Legendary Lifetime Warranty covers FastGun turnbuckles. When you use the FastGun turnbuckles with Torklift frame-mounted tie downs, the lifetime warranty extends to the truck frame and camper anchor points for the extent of its manufacturer warranty. Give us a call at 800.246.8132 for more details.

Check out David's experience with the FastGun turnbuckles in this short video:

See Related:
Six steps you don’t want to skip while prepping for a truck camper
What type of turnbuckle do I need to secure my camper? 

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