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I'm tired of sleeping on the ground and getting to a campsite when it is dark, rainy and/or windy and having to struggle setting up a tent, so I thought it might be a good idea to start looking around for a hard sided trailer that was small enough to haul around to trail heads and campsites behind my JK or MJ.


After a lot of shopping around, I came across this 10' home built (on a Harbor Freight frame) teardrop in Craigslist last week that was practically in my back yard. One phone call and two Ben Franklins made it mine. Here it sits in the shop next to my Comanche (which is in the process of being repainted).




The side storage area above and behind the cabin is full width for storing lots of gear without having to throw everything inside the sleeping area.




Nicely finished cabinetry inside with 12v, 120v and audo/video outlets conveniently located throughout.




120v and 12v electrical panels with an inverter, that is barely visible above to distribute power from electrical plug in or 12v Marine deep cycle battery with a trickle charger mounted below the galley. My plans include rewiring the trailer from 4 wire to 7 and also be able to charge the on board battery via an isolated circuit from the tow vehicle.




The galley with the rear hatch open, upper cabinets closed and lowers open. Note the battery tucked away in the lower left side storage cabinet.




Dewey the Dog seems to approve and is ready to hit the trail in our new to us teardrop!



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Is all of that mold/mildew?




It might have been mildew, but there was not odor and we cleaned it up later this afternoon after I took the pictures. One of the club members who rents the shop with me is a supervisor at the local Forest River RV factory and he thinks it just needs to be aired out and used. He is going to help me with a few upgrades.


By the way, because is weighs less than 1,500 lbs. and doesn't have plumbing, I don't even have to license it in Oregon.



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Looks like someone spent a lot of time & energy building that.


Any interior pics (sleeping area, etc).


Where there was mold/mildew starting on the wood of the Granpa-Campa,

I sprayed it down with a mixture of bleach & water,

then left it out in the sun to dry.


It turned most of the black spots lighter brown.


I also bought some Borax to try on it too, but never got around to that part.


Good luck,

it looks like some of the plywood could use a little reinforcing after all these years, but it looks like a fun project. :cheers:

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very cool but if it were me id gut the whole thing and start new. shouldnt even be a big ordeal or costly.


I've only had the thing a few days, so I really haven't formulated a plan other than to clean and disinfect the interior, fix any obvious leaks and correct the issues with the sketchy hitch wiring and lights.


Some things I will probably do this winter will be to use some of the diamond plate we have in the shop to cover the lower front, extend the tongue and replace the axle with something a little more stout and a JK bolt pattern (5x5"), I am using spacers on my Comanche to fit JK wheels and have several sets, complete with tires. Of course, this would involve changing the fenders and then the madness continues with laminating a new, aluminum faced skin over the 3/4" marine plywood shell.


For now, I'll try a few, close-by trips to trail-head campsites just to see if I like the experience as I expect I could just flip the cleaned up trailer for a tidy profit that could be applied to something newer and nicer.



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My dog is allergic to bleach, so I invested in some concentrated "organic" cleaner, put on some latex gloves and disinfected the galley today in between fussing with the bodywork on my MJ.


After a couple of applications and a lot of elbow grease, it looks much better.









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  • 2 weeks later...

Got the teardrop dried out, disinfected and generally cleaned up. A friend of mine bought some discontinued RV skin, aluminum siding and diamond plate from a local RV manufacturer, so he and another friend started redoing the teardrop's exterior while the plant is shut down for a week. Next up, some new paneling and cabinet facing on the interior sleeping compartment and rear galley.




Note the creative use of my Comanche tailgate in holding the roof skin in place before applying the adhesive.




The teardrop should be ready for a test run later this month. My wife wants to go casino camping for Thanksgiving. I think we will be able to do that.



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I remember back in 1947 or '48, Popular Mechanix had plans on how to build one. They showed a Chrysler station wagon pulling it.


I actually read that series (it was a two parter) on the web recently. Several people have scanned and posted pdfs of the original articles. A slightly different version was published in Australia also, with terms like caravan substituted for trailer. This is turning into another of my obsessive/compulsive endeavors. Thanks to the magic of the interweb, I am now reading the TT&T (Tiny Trailer and Teardrops) and Tearjerkers forums.


This thing should be on the road in a week or so and I am already planning on building an off road version from scratch since I have access to a decent shop and several friends and Jeep club members are currently underemployed in the RV manufacturing industry and will work cheap for cash.



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any progress on this?



I was looking through this thread on HAMB (tons of home made teardrops here),

and thought of yours: :cheers:

http://www.jalopyjournal.com/forum/show ... p?t=368140









Not a teardrop, but jamminz.gif :chillin: :thumbsup:



and my favorite (from post # 75 if the pic doesn't show up :D )



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Bigger pic:




:thumbsup: thanks.



I would LOVE to travel cross country on/in this :rotfl2: :jump: :rotfl2:




though uphill would suck not being able to stand up for extra power. :ack: :ack: :ack:

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Well, except for a little wiring inside (installing a new RV entertainment center that one of the local Jeep club members gave me), the first phase is done. The exterior has been completely skinned and sealed, the interior has been refurbished and paneled and the chassis serviced. These pictures were taken over the past weekend. I'll take it out for a shake down over-nighter later this month.







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The exterior has been completely skinned and sealed, the interior has been refurbished and paneled and the chassis serviced. These pictures were taken over the past weekend. I'll take it out for a shake down over-nighter later this month.








I was not expecting this much progress already!


You rock jamminz.gif :yes:



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looks good :thumbsup: maybe rattle can the frame to closer match the body???


Interesting that you should mention that. The refresh of the teardrop put my Comanche repaint on hold for a few weeks, but we will probably finish up the MJ body and paint work sometime next month. I have some extra paint left over from the work we did to my JK earlier this year and I will either paint the frame to match the JK or MJ.


By the way, I got your PM about the parts and will try to set something up around the end of the month. Perhaps I'll take the teardrop to NorthRidge and you can see it in person.


Shot of the bed trim on the MJ taken about 10 days ago.



My JK on a past adventure. By the way, these wheels with 31" KM2s are going on the Comanche.




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