How to Install a Camper Shell


Measure the camper shell. Ensure the shell is the same measurement as the truck bed. Lower the tailgate. The extra room will be needed. Lift the camper shell on the bed. Make sure the shell lines up with the truck bed. No part of the shell is overlapping the bed. You may need a partner to help you lift the camper on the bed and align it properly.


Clamp the flat edge of the shell to the top portion of the bed. The top portion of the bed will have a lip where the C-clamp will tighten the shell to the pick-up bed. You can also tap holes and bolt the shell in place. The C-clamp is preferable if you desire to remove the shell on a continuous basis.


Clamp 5 additional C-clamps to the bed, holding the shell in place. You will want to ensure you have 6 C-clamps, covering the 4 corners and 2 sides. This will prevent the shell from ever slipping off.


Torque all the clamps down snug. You can tighten the clamps with a pair of pliers to ensure it is tight. Raise your tailgate. You can test the rigidity of the shell by pushing on it to ensure it does not move when you apply force to it.

Tips and Warnings

  • Measure the bed's length and width to make sure that it will be the same size as the length and width of the shell.
  • If you are using bolts to torque it down, you will need to make sure you push the bolts through washers for correct spacing and to prevent the bolt from working its way through the bed. Use a washer on the top end of the bolt and the bottom end.Follow the manufacturer's guidelines for installation. The C-clamp is ideal for lightweight camper shells. If you are installing a heavy shell or an actual camper, you will need to use recommended hardware.
  • Camper shells, which come in many different sizes and shapes, are a great way to keep your truck bed dry while you transport material. In addition to protection of cargo, the camper shell also improves fuel efficiency because wind drag created from a bare truck bed and tailgate is eliminated. Having a camper shell also helps create additional storage space. Once in place, a camper shell will prove useful in more ways than you could have imagined.