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How to Measure Camper Shell Struts

How to Measure Camper Shell Struts

Embarking on a camping journey with your trusty vehicle means ensuring every part of your setup is in top shape. One of the often-overlooked components is the camper shell struts. These struts play a pivotal role in your camping experience, offering support and ease of access to your camper shell. Today, let's delve into the art of measuring camper shell struts, ensuring your next outdoor adventure is smooth and hassle-free.

Understanding Camper Shell Struts

What Are Camper Shell Struts?

Camper shell struts are essentially gas springs that help in lifting and holding up the camper shell's door or window. They are crucial for easy access and safe usage of the shell. Over time, these struts can wear out, making it difficult or even dangerous to operate the shell.

Step-by-Step Guide to Measure Camper Shell Struts

Tools You'll Need

  • Tape measure

  • Notepad and pen

  • A friend or helper (optional but recommended for safety)

Safety First

Before starting, ensure your camper shell is securely propped open. It's always wise to have someone assist you to avoid any accidental closures.

Measuring the Struts

  1. Length Measurement: Measure the strut from the center of one end fitting to the center of the other end fitting. Ensure the strut is fully extended but not under pressure.

  2. Stroke Length: This is the length the strut travels from fully open to fully closed. Measure the visible part of the rod when the strut is fully extended.

  3. Diameter: Measure the diameter of the cylinder and the rod. These measurements are crucial for the strength and fit of the strut.

  4. End Fittings: Note the type of end fittings on your strut. They can be eyelets, ball sockets, or other types. This is crucial for ensuring the new strut fits correctly.

Choosing the Right Replacement

When selecting new struts, it’s not just about the physical dimensions. You also need to consider the force rating, which is usually measured in pounds or newtons. This rating should match your camper shell's specifications to ensure smooth operation.

Installation Tips

  • Safety: Ensure the camper shell is securely propped open during installation.

  • Alignment: Make sure the new struts align correctly with the mounting points.

  • Testing: Once installed, test the struts carefully to ensure they operate smoothly and hold the weight of the shell door or window.


Replacing camper shell struts might seem daunting at first, but with the right tools and a bit of know-how, it’s a task you can confidently tackle. Remember, the right measurements and specifications are key to finding the perfect replacement struts.

Do you have any tips or experiences to share about replacing camper shell struts or maintaining your camping vehicle? Let us know in the comments!

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