DSC04823 (1024x768)You, gentle reader, will recall that we purchased vintage camper #4 recently, a mid 60’s “Del-Ray”.   This behemoth nearly overwhelms our equally gigantic GMC dually pickup, which groaned under the weight of the camper in the box.

Now that we’re owners, we’ve been researching this obscure camper, and while there isn’t a great deal of information out there, there WAS stuff to be had on eBay.  If it exists, it’s on eBay and it’s for sale.  I scored a very nice sales brochure, and could get more if I wanted to immerse myself in collectible stuff for this brute.

Which I could do, but, I don’t want to spend as much on literature as we did for the camper…

At any rate, the brochure has some great color pictures of mid-sixties Ford and Chevrolet trucks groaning under these monsters.  One, the cover shot, shows a happy family touring in the “Skylounge” model, children happily peering out the panoramic windows some 10 or 12 feet in the air as the family pickup teeters over a narrow bridge, father no doubt white knuckling the steering wheel as his bouffont coiffed wife grabs the dash-board in terror.DSC04864 (1024x768)

Ours sadly is not the flagship “Skylounge”, with its forward facing seats way up high, but the mid-level “Imperial Lancer” whose claim to fame is that it’s a full 90″ wide, an industry first (according to the ad writer).  Still, a pretty massive thing, with frontal area that says, “I don’t care how much gas it takes to push through the air, I’m on vacation, DAMMIT!”

These were intended for “…those families who insist upon, no DEMAND the finest in vacation traveling…”.

Obviously, they were talking about the crew here at “Cool McCool’s Garage”, some 45 years after the ad was written and the camper was built, because we are a pretty discerning lot here.  At least we insist on the biggest, if not necessarily the best.

DSC04860 (1024x768)DSC04862 (1024x768)

The photo above, showing the Imperial Skylounge, curiously setting on jacks, not in the truck, and the Imperial Lancer (the model we have), in an idyllic setting lakeside, the owners no doubt relaxing after having herded these monstrosities to this pond without tipping over or sinking into the muck, are shown relaxing under the awning (included with our camper is the original, awning in excellent condition).  This answers my question of how to mount the awning to that lofty rail.  Just take the camper out of the truck, you silly boy, and set it on the ground!

DSC04861 (1024x768)It’s fun to have some of the original literature, both for the information we learned, and to be able to display on the table when the camper is restored (oops, I mean, “refurbished”, this thing is NOT going to be a major project!).  We learned a little, had fun looking at it, and were pleasantly surprised to be able to find it.

Stay tuned, as we get ready, once my shoulder is recovered, to spruce this beast up and hit the road, Cool McCool style!

  1. Matt says:

    Yada Yada Yada…. When do we get to see it on the Diamond T!?!?

  2. Kim says:

    Ha! Never, it won’t between the wheel wells at 49″.

  3. Joe Chasse says:

    Re: Giant Imperial Lancer; I recently sold my original 65 Chev C-30 self contained Caveman motorhome (motor home because it was built on the frame rails), and the fellow is a collector of such things so was tickled when he found a folder full of original paper. Dealer folders and stuff, all the stuff for the refrigerator, toilet, gas lamp, etc. I am glad the old fella who bought it new had saved all that and that I was able to add a bit to it. There’s just nothing like good provenance, is there. Now I am down to one cherry 94 Ford Ranger truck so on the lookout for a good small cab-over camper or more likely a nice little canned ham of some sort…If you go to informiorium and scroll around you will find the Canned Ham Project art piece I made and won People’s Choice at the last local art show – yes it SOLD immediately, and am getting ready to build more.

    Take it easy with that shoulder. I got too rambunctious after hernia surgery and am paying for that now…on the mend and learning lessons…

    Take care, dig your emails,
    Joe Chasse
    Ocean Park, Wa

    PS, do you know anyone who would want to swap for a couple of old post drills?

  4. art davis says:

    Hello. I have aquired a Kamp King koach. I dont know the year or model. Any direction you can send me in to find this out?

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