Torklift has your truck camper’s back with a variety of bumpers!

Bumper Blog 1Typically, campers come with factory bumpers, or no bumper at all. But did you know there are aftermarket truck camper bumpers available that help you gain added storage compartments, bright LED bumper lights and a convenient built in step to help you get in and out of your camper easily?

Torklift offers many kinds of bumpers with features you don’t want to miss. One of the best parts? Most of these bumpers feature spacious compartment storage so you don’t have to store items inside your camper or in the truck. You will never have to leave anything behind while camping again and enjoy the opportunity to take longer camping trips. Created to be a clean, sleek design with advanced engineering, our bumpers are high-impact powder coated for extreme durability.

 

Bumpers, bumpers and more bumpers!

Bumper Blog 2As of right now, we have five truck camper bumpers available for four different manufacturers with more bumpers always in the works. Each bumper is made specifically to fit each camper – you can contact your manufacturer for fitments or find your specific bumper here. All Torklift bumpers are proudly made in the USA and come with our Lifetime Legendary Warranty – ensuring that we’ve got your back so you can have stress-free camping trips! Below are further details about each of the bumpers we have available.


The Foxiest of Bumpers

Bumper Blog 3Fox Landing Bumper for the Arctic Fox: Serves as an extension of your camping experience. This bumper allows you to have left or right side truck camper entry steps. It allows for safe camper entry and exit with its swing side step and is designed to sit above your tow extension so you don’t even have to disconnect when you’re at the campground.

Features of the Fox Landing Bumper include:

• Large entry platform
• Made of aircraft grade aluminum and stainless steel
• Folds up in seconds 
• Convenient fold-away steps 
• GlowStep treads for added safety 
• Allows the ability to tow when using a SuperTruss Extension


The Ultra Bumper Sophistication

Ultra Deck Plus Bumper for Lance campers: When it comes to bumper storage, there’s nothing better than the Ultra Deck Plus as a Lance camper bumper. Made with you in mind, this bumper allows for 7.8 cubic feet of additional truck camper storage space. With a slide-out deck that has the capacity to hold 600 pounds when extended, you won’t have to worry about safety when you’re hanging out on this custom truck camper deck. Additional Ultra Deck Plus features include:

Bumper Blog 4• Aircraft grade aluminum and stainless steel
• High-impact powder coated for extreme durability
• Allows the ability to tow when using a SuperTruss Extension
• Swing step that incorporates Torklift International GlowStep technology
• DOT certified LED lights
• Exclusive Torklift hinge lock system for all storage compartments


The Perfect Landing Pad

Bumper Blog 5

Palomino Landing Pad is made specifically to fit all years of the 2902, 2910 and 2911 camper models. Manufactured from aircraft grade aluminum and stainless steel, it’s designed to work with our Space Dock and Lock and Load Sidekick. This bumper makes it easy to add a swing out accessory to hold generators for extra power. The Space Dock accessory swings in and securely stores while in transit. The Landing Pad is perfect for all your bumper needs and provides an excellent step out of the camper.


Features of this camper bumper include:

• 93” wide platform
• 18.5” depth platform
• Nearly 3.5 cubic feet of storage space
• Allows the ability to tow when using a SuperTruss Extension
• Glow-in-the-dark camper swing step
• LED lights


Nothing But the Best Dura-Bility! 

Bumper Blog 6Palomino Dura-Trak is a lightweight bumper that is designed to be visually aggressive and features a backlit Palomino logo making it look like the bumper is on “fire” when lit up.

With a 36-inch wide by 8-inch deep swing-up step that doubles as a bench, this bumper makes it easy to get in and out of your truck camper improving safety and stability. The step also easily stores on the bumper, not effecting your ground clearance while driving.

Features of the Palomino Dura-Trak include:

• LED recessed lighting for a sleek looking bumper
• 36” wide swing-up step that doubles as a bench and glows in the dark
• Two lengths available for the Palomino Bumper – 83 ½” and 92 ¼”
• Step easily swings up and stores on bumper, not effecting your ground clearance while driving (can be locked)
• Bolt-on installation, no drilling into your camper
• Provides a specially designed license plate bracket that lights up for nighttime driving
• Powder coated in an anti-skid black matte for added traction
• Made of aircraft grade aluminum with stainless steel hardware for a lighter weight bumper
• Compatible with a specially designed Space Dock swing arm accessory that is available through Palomino to hold accessories like a generator, BBQ and more


The True North of Bumpers

Bumper Blog 7Everyone loves a Northstar truck camper, so no matter where you are – from Southeast Florida to Washington, North star bumpers are wonderful campers that are made even better with a bumper. This Torklift bumper works with any Northstar truck camper frame and is built with a lockable storage box on each side of the bumper giving you added storage space.

Features of the Northstar Bumper:

• Custom step tread
• Custom steps
• Made of aircraft grade aluminum
• Allows the ability to tow when using a SuperTruss Extension
• Reinforced gussets

If you have any questions about our custom bumper options or are interested in purchasing one of our truck camper bumpers for Arctic Fox, Lance, Northstar or Palomino, click here or find a dealer near you by visiting the Where to Buy section on our website.

 

 

kerstinWritten by Kerstin Stokes:
As a graduate from the College of Idaho with a B.A. in both History and Art, Kerstin has found her passion for writing and marketing, and has loved every minute of working for Torklift for over 2 years. She enjoys looking up tasty recipes for baking and daydreaming about future travels. 

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See what this RV.net forum user has to say about Lock and Load SideKick

Recently a Torklift customer shared their experience using our Lock and Load SideKick generator tray.

See what Buzzcut1 had to say on RV.net here: LINK

sidekick-generator-tray1The Lock and Load SideKick generator tray
can be installed in a front or rear hitch

The Lock and Load SideKick is designed to keep generators secured under lock and key when in use and generating that coveted AC power we all know and love while at the campsite or while in long-term storage.  It’s the latest innovation in generator security at our factory.  It’s designed to secure the most common small-scale generators that people typically take to the campsite such as Yamaha EF2400iSHC, Yamaha EF2000iS and Honda Eu2000ia generators.

The tray dimensions are 21.25” x 16.125” and it adjusts to fit all front or rear 2” x 2” mounted trailer hitches.

On Rv.net, forum user Buzzcutt1 decided to mount his generator tray to the front receiver. By doing so he was able to put the generator in a non-obtrusive area and freed up a great deal of space in his truck camper. Campers are often looking for alternatives to internal truck camper storage. Not to mention, potential leakage messes and fumes caused by generators will now stay outside.

sidekick-generator-tray2The Lock and Load SideKick generator security tray
is installed in a front receiver hitch shown above

The Lock and Load SideKick is durable, made from high strength steel and aircraft grade aluminum and sealed with high impact powder coat. With generator theft becoming a concern, it even comes with a heavy-duty tamper proof puck lock. No one wants to wake up to a stolen generator since these types of thefts often occur while away from our campsite or while we are sleeping.

Buzzcutt1 found that installation was a snap; he assembled it himself and installed it to the truck’s front hitch receiver.

locking-cargo-trayForum user Buzzcut1 assembled the
Lock and Load SideKick on his own

Based on our customer feedback, we even made a change to this product referenced in this forum thread. We decided to replace the standard hex bolts with two tamper resistant snake eyebolts.

tray-tech-drawingTechnical drawing showing the replaced bolts

Torklift is a company who listens to their customers and values their feedback tremendously. In fact, one of our first products we ever developed was the FastGun turnbuckle and that was based on a customer who had a need. Particularly this customer had arthritis in her hands and was devastated that she was no longer going to be able to truck camp. At the time the only turnbuckles available on the market was the standard hook turnbuckles requiring customers to turn them with their hands. Many years ago, Torklift International founder Jon Kay learned about this woman and decided he needed to do something about it. He developed the quick-disconnect handle FastGun turnbuckle specifically for this woman so she could continue to truck camp.

It is that devotion to customer service and input that leads to new and improved products at Torklift International.

Thank you to Buzzcut1 for sharing this experience about our Lock and Load SideKick generator tray.

Click here to learn more about the Lock and Load SideKick generator tray.

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The easiest way to prevent stolen turnbuckles

b2ap3_thumbnail_stop-stealing.pngWith stories about stolen turnbuckles and camper theft happening more often, locking turnbuckles are a necessity. Torklift International FastGun turnbuckles have a locking turnbuckle feature that allows you to protect your investment and enjoy a worry-free experience when on the road.

Do you need locking turnbuckles? Take a moment to consider if the following is important to you:

1) Deter and prevent turnbuckle theft
With locking turnbuckles, it greatly increases the effort put forth on behalf of a thief, decreasing the likelihood of theft from taking place.

When recalling stories about stolen FastGuns, Torklift General Manager Jay Taylor recalled an instance in which a thief tried to resell the stolen turnbuckles in the exact campsite in which he stole them.

 “I couldn’t believe that someone would walk up, nonchalantly take the turnbuckle off the camper and try to resell it to other campers at the same campsite,” said Taylor. “Luckily the original owner approached the person and was able to get the stolen FastGuns back. Luck was surely on his side.”

b2ap3_thumbnail_hiking.png2) Leave the truck camper at the campsite, worry-free
As avid travelers, many of us who camp often like to explore. It’s these adventures while out on the road that make experiencing the outdoors so enjoyable. With locking turnbuckles, leave your equipment at the campsite and go enjoy a scenic hike, fish along the shoreline of a mountain lake or take a bike ride with your family. You won’t need to give any thought to leaving your gear. Traveling should be leisurely and worry-free, right?

b2ap3_thumbnail_save-money.png3) Avoid turnbuckle replacement costs
FastGuns are the best turnbuckles your money can buy. As the most convenient and fastest installing turnbuckle available, protect your investment with FastGun Locks. High quality turnbuckles from Torklift International will last a lifetime and are covered by Torklift’s legendary lifetime warranty.

4) Secure turnbuckles while on the road
The FastGun Locks act as a locking snapper pin that latches into place once the FastGun lever-action handle is secured down.  Other models of truck camper turnbuckles have a small pin that can be easily pulled for simple removal. If they fall out or are lost for any reason, the turnbuckle is not completely secured.

locking turnbuckles
FastGun Lock on truck camper turnbuckle

b2ap3_thumbnail_fastgun-lock.png

As a theft deterrent and solution to secure turnbuckles, the Torklift FastGun Locks are worth investing in.  Locks for FastGun turnbuckles also have the following features:
     -  Keyed alike for convenience
     -  Quick removal – only takes seconds to unlock 
     -  Sleek stainless steel and unobtrusive design
     -  Prevent dust and road grime with the weather resistant caps

b2ap3_thumbnail_Rope-holding-camper.pngHave you ever thought of what you might do if you are left without turnbuckles out on the road? It is not safe to use strap tie downs or rope to secure a truck camper. Avoid this situation with locking turnbuckles.

Browse additional Torklift International security products:
Lock and Load cargo tray
Fortress GasLock propane tank lock
Fortress PowerLock to protect shore power cord
FastGun Wobble Stopper to avoid camper theft

Soon Torklift plans to unveil a new lock that further ensures your Torklift gear is secured while on the road. Get ready… the countdown begins. Can you take a guess?

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What type of truck camper turnbuckle do I need to secure my camper?

Turnbuckles are a very important piece of equipment that connects the truck to the tie down system for your truck camper. When it comes to turnbuckles, you might be wondering what design will work best for your application. Because there are several different turnbuckle models for different types of camper tie downs, we’ll help you determine what type of turnbuckle you will need.

1. Opt for a spring-loaded turnbuckle
It is important to use turnbuckles that are spring-loaded to allow some give when your vehicle encounters uneven roads. Torklift strongly recommends using spring-loaded turnbuckles on all four points of the camper. The spring design acts as a shock absorber protecting the anchor points on your new camper as well as the tie down system. After all, the number one reason someone uses a truck camper is to go places other conventional RVs can’t imagine going.

2. Select a turnbuckle that you are comfortable with
For frame-mounted applications, choose from the Basic SpringLoad Kit, SpringLoad XL, and the most popular truck camper turnbuckle in the world, the original FastGun turnbuckle.

3. Turnbuckle chain system
The Basic SpringLoad Kit includes two quick links, two heavy-duty forged steel turnbuckles and 24 inches of marine grade chain. This basic turnbuckle bolts easily to the end of each tie down providing the required suspension to help protect camper anchor points.

b2ap3_thumbnail_basicturnbucklekit.png
Basic Springload Kit chain system

4. Consider a simpler, chainless turnbuckle

The SpringLoad XL turnbuckle is made from aircraft grade aluminum and stainless steel, reaching 28 to 43 inches. Made with a square body for easy adjustment, the SpringLoad XL has internal springs and spring tension indicators.

 b2ap3_thumbnail_SpringloadXL.png
SpringLoad XL chainless turnbuckle

5. Easiest turnbuckle: Go Quick-Disconnect
The original FastGun spring-loaded turnbuckles are the top selling turnbuckle in the world because of its quick-disconnect handle making adjustment extraordinarily fast and convenient. To protect your investment, utilize the FastGun Locks to prevent your turnbuckles from being stolen. The turnbuckle design also features the patented spring tension indicators to ensure proper installation.

b2ap3_thumbnail_FastGuns.png
FastGun Quick-Disconnect turnbuckles

6. Make any turnbuckle quick-disconnect
By adding a Derringer Handle to any basic hardware turnbuckle, you can achieve the quick-disconnect capability and convenience of a FastGun turnbuckle.

b2ap3_thumbnail_Derringerhandle.jpg
Derringer handles for quick-disconnect capability

7. What turnbuckle should be used with a bed-mounted system?
 If you choose a bed-mounted tie down system, appropriate turnbuckles for your application would be the AnchorGuard or AnchorGuard Derringer turnbuckles. The front set of AnchorGuard turnbuckles are spring-loaded and the rear set is cushioned to accommodate your bed/bumper mounted tie down system.

Made from 100 percent stainless steel, AnchorGuard turnbuckles are easy to set up and also come with spring tension indicators.

b2ap3_thumbnail_bedmounted.png
AnchorGuard turnbuckle for bed-mounted tie down applications

8. Upgrade to a Quick-Disconnect
For the best turnbuckle for a bed-mounted tie down system, the AnchorGuard Derringer combines the FastGun quick-disconnect derringer handle made from aircraft grade aluminum with the basic stainless steel AnchorGuard design.

b2ap3_thumbnail_derringer_ag.png
AnchorGuard Derringer turnbuckle with quick-disconnect

Now that you are familiar with different options of turnbuckle designs, you will need to know how to properly install a turnbuckle on your camper.

It is very important to apply the correct amount of tension when tightening your turnbuckles. If there is not enough tension you could potentially lose your camper. If there is too much tension you may damage the anchor points on your camper.

Camper manufacturers suggest that 300 pounds of tension be applied to secure the camper properly. To properly achieve this, Torklift created the patented spring tension indicator.

b2ap3_thumbnail_oring.jpg
Patented spring tension indicator

By setting the O-ring of the tension indicator flush with the body of the turnbuckle, once tightened the internal spring compresses and a quarter inch space becomes visible between the O-ring and body of the turnbuckle. The space indicates that you have achieved the proper 300 pounds of tension.

To learn more about how to install truck camper turnbuckles, watch this quick video:

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Six steps you don’t want to skip when prepping for a truck camper

Congratulations on your new truck camper! Now, what are the next steps to further prepare for your camper?

STEP 1 – Tie Downs
To start with the basics, you need to add a tie down system to your truck in order to safely secure the truck camper to the vehicle. Tie downs that mount directly to the frame of the truck are the best way to secure the camper. The frame-mounted design fits to specific vehicle makes/models allowing strongest possible attachment to the truck. Eliminate any chances of bed and bumper damage by using a frame-mounted design.

b2ap3_thumbnail_Framemounted.jpg

Torklift International’s frame-mounted tie down system incorporates four independent tie down points for dramatically improved stability. The tie downs bolt directly onto the truck frame and most applications don’t require drilling. There is no loss of ground clearance and they are tucked up tight to the truck to minimize their visibility when the tie down inserts are removed. Torklift International tie downs are the only tie downs that truly attach to the strongest part of your truck: the truck frame. All others are bed-mounted.

As an industry first, Torklift recently unveiled the precision crafted aluminum Talon Tie Downs. They are made from 100% lightweight military grade aluminum alloy making them up to 50% lighter than steel applications. The Talons come with rust free corrosion protection.

Torklift Tie Downs have a lifetime warranty. When Torklift Tie Downs are used with our spring-loaded turnbuckles, we extend the lifetimewarranty to the truck frame and camper anchor points for the extent of its manufacturer’s warranty.

STEP 2 - Turnbuckles
That will bring us to the next step in selecting important hardware for your truck camper. The equipment used to connect the truck and tie down system to your new camper are called turnbuckles.

There are several designs of turnbuckles. For frame-mounted applications, you’ll want to choose from the Basic SpringLoad Kit, SpringLoad XL, and the most popular truck camper turnbuckle in the world, the original FastGun turnbuckle.

b2ap3_thumbnail_basicspringload.jpgb2ap3_thumbnail_springloadxl.jpgb2ap3_thumbnail_fastgun.jpg

The original FastGun spring-loaded turnbuckles are the top selling turnbuckle for a few reasons:
        - The quick-disconnect handle makes adjustment fast and convenient
        - The design features patented spring tension indicators to assure proper installation
        - Lockable
        - Tool-Free

Spring-loaded turnbuckles are important because it allows for some give when your vehicle encounters bumps on the road. Torklift strongly recommends using spring-loaded turnbuckles on all four points of the camper. The spring design acts as a shock absorber protecting the anchor points on your new camper as well as the tie down system.

b2ap3_thumbnail_oring.jpgWhen putting on your turnbuckles, how do you know how tight to adjust them?

This is where the Torklift patented spring tension indicators make life easier. Camper manufacturers suggest that 300 lbs of tension be applied to secure the camper properly. 

b2ap3_thumbnail_Derringerhandle.jpg

By setting the O-ring of your tension indicator flush with the body of the turnbuckle, once tightened the internal spring compresses and you should see a quarter inch space between the O-ring and body of the turnbuckle.

Did you know that you could turn a standard turnbuckle into a FastGun?

By adding a derringer handle to any basic hardware turnbuckle, you can achieve the quick-disconnect capability and convenience of a FastGun turnbuckle.

AnchorGuard turnbuckles are appropriate if you choose a bed-mounted tie down system.

 

STEP 3 – Rubber Bed Mats
We strongly suggest adding a rubber bed mat in your truck bed to prevent the camper from sliding in the bed of the truck. Not only are bed mats cost-effective, they also protect your truck bed surface from scratches, dings and dents.

Do not install your truck camper on top of a plastic bed liner or hard surface spray-in bed liners. The drop in plastic bed liners can slide on top of the truck bed surface and the camper can slide on top of the slick surface of the bed liner. The liner can also act as a spring causing a trampoline effect increasing vertical truck camper movement, possibly resulting in truck bed damage and/or camper damage.

STEP 4 - Suspension
A truck camper adds a large amount of weight to your truck with a high center of gravity, causing significant side-to-side sway and body roll. The weight of the camper in the bed will also cause your truck to sag having negative effects on how your truck handles while driving.

How can you battle these effects?

By installing the StableLoad suspension stabilizer, the handling of your truck with the camper loaded will drastically improve. By pre-activating the stabilizing effects of your factory suspension, some of the benefits of the StableLoads include sway reduction, leveling the vehicle, decrease in stopping distance, reduced tire wear and overall improved ride quality.  

To learn more about how the StableLoads work on your suspension, see more information on the Torklift blog here.

STEP 5 - Steps
b2ap3_thumbnail_GlowGuide.jpgOnce you select your camper and have safely tied down your investment for your road trip adventures, you’ll want to determine the most convenient, safe way to enter and exit your RV. Be sure to browse the GlowStep Series to find solutions that are the safest, durable and most importantly fits the needs of your application.  

 

b2ap3_thumbnail_camperstep.jpg

The GlowStep is a lockable scissor step made from aircraft grade aluminum and stainless steel. It has built in step tread. It is the only step available that uses no rivets and is fully bushing bolted making it the most rigid, stable and most versatile step system on the market. The glowing capability offers additional safe, stable entry and exit to your camper. You can easily add or remove steps with ranges from two to six steps. For increased stability, look into adding a GlowGuide handrail.

If your camper has a large vertical gap from the entry door to the bumper, a Basement Camper Step will allow for easy entry.

STEP 6 – Storage (long term and short term)

Now that you have the camper of your dreams, be sure to protect it! We have a few suggestions:

With the FastGun Wobble Stopper camper stabilizer, your camper is protected against jack and frame stress when it is unloaded. It also makes a significant difference with increased stability by eliminating annoying camper wobble during your time in your RV while it’s off of the truck. The newly designed FastGun Wobble Stopper now has a convenient quick-disconnect application and is lockable, so nobody can load your camper onto another truck and drive away with it when the Wobble Stopper is locked. Don’t let camper theft happen to you!

 

camperpacker3As an affordable way to store your camper during the offseason, turn to the Camper Packer storage stands. With pre-treated lumber in the kit, the sawhorse style camper storage solution has a capacity of 6,000 lbs per pair, is easy to store and very simple to assemble.

 

 

If you have any questions in regards to your new truck camper and what equipment you might need, contact our Technical Support Team at support@torklift.com or 800-246-8132. Their expertise will come in handy when navigating the world of truck camping! 

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You won’t believe what we sent this customer in the mail (Hint: It will be a smashing success!)

mallet

A rubber mallet? Let us take a minute and explain. As a gift it probably doesn’t make a lot of sense. You might be asking, why would Torklift send this to a customer? Doesn’t strike us as the best idea for a new product either….

Nolan Sturgeon recently shared the details of his family’s trip leading up to the Thanksgiving holiday on RV.Net’s forum. As they maneuvered the back roads from San Diego, California to Colorado Springs, Colorado, they encountered breathtaking locations that included desert plains, wind-carved slot canyons, sun-drenched valleys, and even the blistering snowy landscapes of a national park.

Loaded up with their Wolf Creek truck camper secured by Torklift TRUE frame-mounted Tie Downs and FastGun locking turnbuckles, not only was the family able to safely travel through various terrains, but also endured a variety of weather conditions.

blackcanyon tc in storm
Black Canyon of Gunnison National Park The Sturgeon family experiences
conditions of ice and snow


When traveling through harsh conditions, the truck and tie down system became weighed down by ice. The truck camper frame-mounted tie downs continued to secure the camper throughout the trip and the Sturgeon’s were able to safely trek onward.

tiedownsiclesTorklift TRUE frame-mounted "Tie Down-sicles"

On RV.Net, Nolan wrote… 

Anutami Quote

Well Nolan, you asked for it! Next time the Sturgeons take off on a new adventure with their truck camper, we hope the rubber mallet we sent them will come in handy!

Torklift International is dedicated to finding solutions for our customers. Nolan mentioned the ice added hundreds of pounds. Recently we released our all-new aluminum Talon Tie Downs. They are up to 50% lighter than some of our steel applications, corrosion resistant and just as durable as our steel tie downs.

Check out the aluminum Talon Tie Downs in this video here:  

 

It’s experiences like the Sturgeon’s family vacation that hold such great significance. The ability to explore and discover new places and create memories with loved ones is a part of life we truly value.

Find your adventure. Travel safe…and share your experience with us!

View Nolan’s entire post on RV.Net – the pictures are worth it! 

Part 1 | Part 2 

tc desert

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Thank you Amanda!..by Torklift Jen

SAMSUNG DIGITAL CAMERABy: Torklift Jen

“Thank YOU!”

This is what I was thinking when I saw the picture above.

France (she’s on the left) leads a truck camping jamboree in Quebec.

They are holding up their latest Torklift International gear: limited edition hats, tie down storage bags and pocket knives.

They recently helped us translate some of our materials from English to French Canadian for our friends up north.

In case you are wondering who Amanda is, that is Amanda Watt, our Inside Sales and Marketing Coordinator. Together, we get to give out a lot of free goodies and we are happy to do it.

Now I’m ready to make an offer to you so you can get your hands on the latest and greatest Torklift International gear. The first five people to sign up to follow my blog will get their choice of a limited edition hat or knife. If you are already following, just share my post and you can be one of the lucky five.

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Breaking the ice for 2014...by Torklift Jen

IMG_1234Welcome to the first post of Torklift Jen for the New Year.

I am looking forward to another year full of adventures, learning opportunities and sharing more truck and camper news.

Winter is not a time to hibernate here at Torklift.  I don’t have the excuse of being stuck in the Antarctic waiting to be rescued by the USCGC Polar Star or even being sucked into a Midwest freeze by the Polar Vortex to not participate in this season of new lessons.   I just have to be prepared with a bit more planning, several more clothing layers and a few classes in cold weather camping, driving, and winterization to get me started.

Also, Breaking up the ice and chill in 2014 will be some hot news on solar accessory options, bumpers, and other new products from Torklift.

Another sign it’s the New Year are all the speculations and talk about the 2015 truck and RV model year designs.  Ford’s new aluminum trucks , meet our Talons!  But, I don’t want to get too far ahead of myself as I still have a lot of new experiences to live for this year.  The best resolutions have to start somewhere, so let’s get out there!

IMG_1241 3.11.23 PM

 

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Toy Drive 2013 Wrap-up...by Torklift Jen

IMG_1216The toys have all been delivered for the annual Torklift Toy Drive 2013!  Within our office, we've gathered enough to help 45 children to have a brighter holiday.

 

Torklift International contributed our donations to the the Sumner Washington Police Department's Toy Box Drive and collectively we are providing over 600 kids and families that special something to celebrate the season.

 

As we are wrapping-up, literally, the completion of the year and all of the toys, the Torklift factory is again in full swing to continue making great products and providing growth for jobs and helping the local community where we live and work.


Best wishes to all for a safe and prosperous 2014!

IMG_1218 Looking forward to all of your camping, hauling, and outdoor adventures to come.IMG_1221

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Gear-up Girl...by Torklift Jen

IMG_1705I have fallen in love with the smell of new tires, leather and octane.

 

After corresponding on all the SEMA week 2013 events.  I am beginning to feel like a real “gearhead.”

 

The Specialty Equipment Market Association’s biggest exposition isn’t just for the guys and pretty show models, although there were a lot of both.  I found that the SEMA organization is providing opportunities for women who want to make a difference in the automotive industry.

 

IMG_1711They featured special events, educational seminars and networking connections specifically for women and mentors in the industry.  Also, found on the show floor were cars, trucks, and accessories designed, built and powered by women.

 

For everyone at Torklift International this has been a successful show.

 

It’s been reported that this has been the best year ever in attendance, manufacturer representation and exhibitors participating.  A great sign for the industry.IMG_1687


 

We were proud to be featured in several media events, a national press conference with drag racer Holly Clarke, and will enjoy our exposure to this growing market for our full line of products.

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It'll go down in history as tailgate... by Torklift Jen

IMG_1569This has nothing to do with scandal, politics, or conspiracy.  Unless you consider a crosstown rivalry between opposing football teams “politics.”

Tailgating is the ritual of pregame parking lot BBQ’s, good-natured razzing and one-upping your neighbor.

In that spirit, I couldn’t wait to try out the latest in Torklift design innovation and do a trial run with the newest achievement in truck camping functionality.  You may have thought you’d seen it all in truck camping, but now Torklift is designing and manufacturing multi-functional bumpers for the RV industry.

So, this is how it went down.

When I pulled up in the new camper with the Torklift designed bumper feature, the crowd went silent.

The BBQ smoke magically cleared as I circled the lot for a space.  If I am not mistaken, I think I even saw a couple of mouths drop and some bow downs.

I had brought in some real competition to this parking lot.  It was the best new bumper on the block.

Now I not only had the truck camper for the ultimate, all-inclusive, pre-game celebration.  I now had the ultimate patio and entertainment center to go with it.bumper_cutout

The new campers with this bumper will have features like custom steps, huge drawers for storage, lockable bins and racks, and area for BBQs.  It is a true gathering area with all the comforts of home.

So, my football team may have come in a distant second place, I will always be known as the winner with this tailgate set-up.

 

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Life before FastGuns... by Torklift Jen

Although it’s impossible for me to imagine, and difficult for those who have come to love the FastGun, that there was life before this revolutionary turnbuckle.

IMG_0107 copyI went to the oldest person I know, my 105-year-old grandmother, and asked her what it was like before the FastGun.  She said, “ We used bows and arrows.”

So, okay, not that far back.

She’s not a truck camper, but she did tell me a camping story that falls somewhere in the timeline between covered wagon and the Winnebago, but I’ll save that for a later date.

I resolved to find out what it was like.  So, I went to the computer and typed in a query.

A generic turnbuckle is really just a simple piece of tension building hardware used in marine applications, sports, shipping and construction.

It is a simple piece of hardware that can make a simple task difficult.

“Big Red,” the Ford F-350, doubles as a work truck and a weekend camper.  I can’t imagine taking the camper off and back on this often without the FastGun turnbuckle.

OutofUseThey are spring loaded for superb functioning, easy adjustment and have spring tension indicators, that take the guess work out of tightening and securing.

They have a quick disconnect feature that makes the leveling process fast.  They allow use of the electric jacks to level when the camper is left on the truck.  This avoids the hassle of leveling blocks under your tires.

100% no tools, 100% lockable, quick-lever handle and a lifetime warranty that means with my genetics for longevity may be a very, very long time.

There is no turning back for the turnbuckle.  http://www.torklift.com/x.php?w_page=original_fastguns

 

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Black water is not a song by the Doobie Brothers... by Torklift Jen

What’s black, grey and sometimes potable?IMG_0777

No, not a lead in to a bad joke, these are all very important distinctions to make when moving up to camping with plumbing.

Thanks to this new knowledge, I will never be able to hear that lovely, little Southern rock ditty by the Doobie Brothers the same way again.

Black water is the worst kind of water.  It is the direct contents of the RV toilet.

Grey water, although nasty, is just the waste of the bathroom sink, shower and kitchenette.

Common sense would have me believe that potable water would relate to the “potty” as well.

So, not so, as I am learning the color-coded designations of the RV tank system.

Potable water is your fresh water tank.

I am used to tent camping and somehow over years of boating and camping have never had the duty to, well, deal with the “duty”.  I have just always known that finding a Honey Bucket was a convenient luxury and I could deal with nature calling out in nature just fine.

I am not looking forward to my first time “dumping.” Yikes!  A gauge will show the levels on the control panel in the camper and a distinct stink may tell you when it is time.  However, this is a highly researched area of RV life and many products have been developed to make this a quick, easy and sanitary process.

The advice from my co-workers is to not overthink things and just do it.

IMG_1125I wonder how long I can get away with never using the truck camper bathroom.  I think the space could make a great walk in closet.

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Forklift Jen... by Torklift Jen

Forklift Jen

Beep, Beep…here I come.IMG_0628

No, not really.  I’m actually not Forklift Jen, Tork lift Jen, Torquelift Jen or even Dorklift Jen.

It’s a common mistake when you have an easily rhyming name, and I don’t take it personally.

With all of the new ways I am learning to get around here at Torklift, I hope I eventually have the opportunity to master the forklift mode of transport, too.

There’s a lot of hard work, skilled craftsmanship and innovation that goes on here.   It’s inspiring to be part of the team and get to see products start from raw metal and then fabricated into the functional art they become.  They are invented, made, boxed and shipped from right here at the factory to all over the world.

I should really get back to work now.  Torklift Jen will not be taking on any new job titles until mastering the F-350 and camper first.

See why I’m so proud to work here:

Torklift International Wins First Place in Seattle Business Magazine’s 2013 Best Company to Work For

http://www.seattlebusinessmag.com/article/100-best-companies-work-2013-midsize-companies

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Mini me... by Torklift Jen

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Looking back to my humble beginnings of truck camping there were many learning opportunities and tips that I should have picked-up on in regard to all this truck camping stuff.

I am reminded that all I really needed to know about truck camping, I learned in kindergarten.

Like coloring, stay between the lines on the highway and go a little crazy when you’re off road.

Don’t run with scissors, but it’s okay to run up a sturdy set of scissor steps. IMG_1035

If you got bad suspension you were in some heavy-duty trouble and you were going to be in a world of hurt when you got home from school.  Now with good suspension you can carry a heavy load home and not feel a thing.

Kissing a toad will not result in a prince charming and will result in me looking very silly kissing my little tow behind car.

I learned that if you tie your toy truck bumper to a string attached to your bike and take off down the driveway, the bumper will get pulled off the truck and the part will end up in your baby brother’s mouth and then you’re in a heap of trouble from mom.  The worst!  Frame-mounted tie downs are always best.

IMG_0119Pick up your toys and someday your toys will be pickups.

Training wheels are not for babies.  They were just good practice for driving my dually Ford F350.

Time-out is a good thing if you’re prepared with your best toys and can sit and enjoy the quiet.

I think I’ve got all these new concepts down now and can put them to good use as I grow into “Torklift Jen”.

True Frame-Mounted Tie Downs- Stay snug to your foundation.

http://www.torklift.com/w.php?w_page=tie_downsIMG_0117

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Take Two... by Torklift Jen

The F-350 seat adjusted: Check. IMG_1258

 

The squiggle indicator off: Check.

 

 No explosion upon starting the engine and the Everest parts are off: Check.  Phew!  I think I can do this.

 

 The rest of the test drive went smoothly. Really!

 

 I was impressed by the handling of the truck, especially with such a big camper.  I felt no lack of power going up steep hills, good stopping distance and it handled well over rough, un-even roads and railroad tracks.

 

 I am used to driving a stiff suspension little car.  It is nice to feel high and mighty on the road.  It feels like I’m going places, making it big, and climbing the corporate ladder even if that ladder looks more like a tree…, I’m loving it.

 

http://www.torklift.com/products/stableload.php

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My new job title: Torklift Jen

IMG_1639I experiment with Torklift products and take them out in the real world with a uniquely “Torklift Jen” perspective.  Some people say I’m like an action figure All I need is a cape!

What is the “Torklift Jen” perspective you ask?

Well, I get lots of advice during my work week on what to do, and most importantly what NOT to do by some of the best in the industry.  I look forward to sharing what I learn and passing on what I find about new products, engineering information and technical advice.

Just as a preview, you’ll find out what it’s like for little ole’ me to drive a giant truck!

I will check-in from the roads traveled with the people I meet while wearing my “Torklift Jen” hat.

Let me know if you have any great ideas and what makes your off time work for you.

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