Teardrop Trailer: 30 Photos Documenting One Man’s Journey

Have you ever considered building your own camper? With all of the DIY projects posted online, it shouldn’t be too difficult, right? This is the journey of one man who took the phrase “do it yourself” to the next level.

Although he had never built anything like this before, he took on the project of designing and building his own teardrop trailer. He used no store bought, pre-made plans, and it only took him around two months to complete.

First-time-out-at-Guadalupe-River-State-Park

As you can see, the results are phenomenal.

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The Trailer’s Base

He knew he needed a good foundation to ensure the desired product, so he decided to use a sturdier flatbed than many camper designs use. Instead of a Harbor Freight trailer, he chose the Top Hat style.

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Top Hat Trailer

Often, builders forget to add insulation to their travel trailers, making them uninhabitable most of the year. He solved this problem by installing wooden slats to allow room for the insulation to go under the trailer’s floor.

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These-slats-create-space-for-insulation-under-the-main-floor-of-the-camper

He invested in thick fiberglass insulation, as a better alternative to the commonly used foam board.

Many-DIY-builders-forget-the-important-of-insulating-their-campers.

Adding the Sidewalls

He designed the sidewalls, and cut them to his personal specifications.

He-didnt-use-any-plans-and-relied-on-common-good-judgement-in-laying-out-the-bracing

After making sure that the sidewalls would fit, he began building the frame.

After-test-fitting-the-side-walls-it-was-time-to-built-out-the-frame

He made curved bracing elements to enhance the teardrop design.

He-even-took-the-time-to-make-curved-bracing

He saved money by using foam board for the insulation in the walls. The thin foam board also avoided encroaching on the interior space too much.

The-walls-have-foam-board-insulation-to-keep-them-thin

Adding the Trailer’s Roof

After framing out the door, he added cross members for the roof.

Next-up-came-the-cross-members

He cut a hole to install a vent fan, and then added foam board insulation to the teardrop trailer’s roof.

Cutting-a-hole-in-the-roof-for-the-vent-fan

Adding the vent cover ensured that the interior was protected from the elements while he continued to work on it.

No-problems-with-ventilation-in-this-tear-drop-camper

He then added thin sheets of plywood to round out the edges and provide a more finished look.

Adding-foam-board-insulation-to-the-roof

Affixing the plywood to the top took time and patience. It was necessary to provide the surface for adding the finishing touches.

It-wasnt-easy-curving-the-thin-sheets-of-plywood-to-fit-flush

Installing the Doors

Once the trailer started to really come together, he set and aligned doors on each side.

Setting-and-aligning-the-two-doors

Making sure the doors close easily and tightly meant the trailer would be more air tight. This would prevent drafts.

Looks-to-be-a-good-fit

Building the Bedroom

The bedroom was completed with some help from his grandfather.

Some-cubby-storage-boxes-above-the-bed

Once the interior was painted a dark brown, storage boxes were added over the bed. Then his Grandpa built a reading light holder and phone charging station into the corner.

Teardrop Trailer Bedroom

Building the Teardrop Trailer Kitchen

The kitchen may have been the most difficult and challenging aspect of the camper. Like most teardrop trailers, the layout of the kitchen was to be in the back.

The-camper-has-a-traditional-tear-drop-layout-with-a-rear-kitchen

It quickly became obvious that aligning the hatch door correctly wouldn’t be easy, so he used spacers and clamped everything in place while it dried.

The-first-of-three-hatch-back-designs

Unfortunately, the first time he removed the clamps, the frame broke. After two months of frustration, he returned to the project with a new plan.

But-after-he-took-the-clamps-off-the-wooden-spine-broke

With some research online, he discovered that gluing sheets of plywood together would strengthen the brace. Fortunately, he was right.

Redesign-of-the-hatchback-made-out-of-glued-plywood

Once the basics were completed, he used cans and jars to ensure that the shelf sizes were correct.

The finished galley kitchen is functional and attractive.

Completed-galley-kitchen

Adding the Finishing Touches

With the doors and vent installed, it was time to add the siding.

Almost-ready-for-the-aluminum-siding

He cut holes for the doors and the vent.

Cutting-out-the-hole-for-the-door-in-the-aluminum-siding

Then, he used aluminum sheeting to cover the plywood frame of the camper.

Forming-the-aluminum-over-the-plywood-frame

With a little routing to smooth the edges, and some added trim, the project was completed.

Just-a-bit-of-trim-work-left

First Trip With the Teardrop Trailer

For his first trip with the camper, he and a friend went to the beautiful Guadalupe River State Park.

Girl-testing-out-a-tear-drop-camper

Here he is with his finished, handmade teardrop trailer.

Proud-builder-and-his-homemade-tear-drop-camper

In Conclusion

Not everyone has the patience to build his or her own travel trailer from scratch. These photographs show that with a bit of creativity, some perseverance, and a little hard work, anyone can do it. Please share this post as a point of inspiration for your family and friends, especially those with a knack for taking on DIY projects.

My_teardrop

All photos via: Imgur

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