Popular in the immediate post war years there has been something of a revival of late in teardrop trailers along with the whole idea of living with less. There are entire networks it seems on TV that promote the ideas of tiny living with families of 5 moving into a 250 square foot house. While that would be way too small for me, I do like the idea of the teardrop trailer and have been considering building one for some time. Light enough to tow behind almost any car it seems that there would not be a lot of organization needed to get it hitched up and hit the road. I know friends that have large fifth wheel campers that refer to them as their land yacht. These behemoths are indeed impressive with large double beds, flat screen TV's, and kitchens larger than many have at home. But getting on the road for a short break takes a lot of effort and would be just too much work for a weekend. On the other hand the teardrop, by comparison, should be swift.
Although I could just go out and buy a new teardrop, and there are lots to choose from, half the fun would be building it just the way that I want it. Another reason for wanting to possibly build my own is that the quality of some of the commercially built ones are somewhat lacking. This does not apply to all of the trailers that I've looked at but on some the joinery work is below par. Also, and this is big one for me, they lack much in the way of insulation. Given that any trailer I own will get most of its use in the winter months, when I'm not out boating, it has to be warm and cozy. Being cold at night will take all the fun out of it and the trailer would likely be used far less. I've done a fair bit of camping during my life and being in bone chilling conditions when the mercury is below freezing is no fun at all.
So I've been conducting some tests and I've been making up some insulated panels that I think will work. Essentially these are constructed from a sandwich of two sheets of plywood with closed cell insulation in the middle–light and strong. On the other hand many of the home built teardrops seem to be built on a framework of wood along the lines of a stick-built house. There are several problems with this. It seems to me the trailer is heavier than it needs to be, and the insulation is sub-par as the wood framework causes thermal bridging vastly reducing the insulation factor.
I will carry on with the tests for now and let you know how things turn out, and if indeed I plan to go ahead with the build.
The image above is courtesy of tinyyellowteardrop.