Introducing myself from Tacoma area

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Introducing myself from Tacoma area

Postby yrock87 » Sun Nov 15, 2015 7:13 am

Hi all, I have been lurking for about two months now, believe it or not, since my wife showed my some teardrops on pintrest!
Anyways, I currently live near Tacoma, WA and am looking to build a teardrop style tt for many reasons.

A. I move a lot, and have always liked the idea of towing a motel behind my car that I pay for once rather than 100 a night, also useful for roadtrips and such.

B. I grew up camping a lot (Eagle Scout) . But because of where I have lived recently (Europe, and Alaska) I haven't made it out camping much in years. The biggest reason against camping in alaska was the wife's fear of needing a solid wall between her and the (rather large) wildlife. We made it to Denali a few times but even then, the weather made the trips chilly and wet.

C. I just welcomed my daughter into the world and due to some complications she is not going to be able to tent camp as early as many new babys. I figure modified teardrop will give us the "indoors" and temperature control, ext that she will need for the next few years and still let us all experience the outdoors!

D. Setting up the tent and kitchen is the biggest headache of camping, especially of you are trying to camp while traveling or if you are otherwise limited in free time. A chuck box or patrol box would solve half of that problem but I worry about interior storage in my "adventuremobile" (Subaru outback)

E. I'm only in my late 20s but am tired of sleeping on the ground.

So attached (i think) are two photos, one showing the modified 5x10 foot weekender profile that is inspired by my wife's subi. That size seems the perfect blend of small enough to fit behind TV, small enough to be relatively easy/cheap to build, and large enough to comfortably fit 2.5 people. I love the profile of a traditional tear but between desiring a more squared rear (for the additional space required by the fold down) , and the ease of construction afforded by straight panels and straight cuts, this seems like a better fit. I took a lot of inspiration from the 4-day-weekender and the hopper designs. I am thinking sandwich construction with 3/4 or 1 in foam as a good balance between insulation and wall width. I also love the idea of SIP in general. Looking around it seems that many freely admit that they way over built. I'm sure I will too, especially if my dad helps out like he says he will, but it looks like SIP construction gives you an immensely strong build for the weight, IF you can get good bonds. Part of that search will be exploring non-plywood laminates, as in, what materials are as strong or lighter but strong enough, or maybe skip straight to the finished surface and skip the ply base layer. If a 3/4 inch ply with 2x4 is one end, and foamy is the other, I'm thinking I will land closer to the foamy side. I don't know, should be fun!

Also shown is a profile of the interior, it includes a fold down 3x5 bed for my daughter and planned baby #2. I figure once they outgrow the fold down they will be big enough for a kiddie tent leaving mom and dad on a comfy mattress. I would love to incorporate a folding main bed with a small table for those rainy days, but I'm not sure how complicated I want to me this build, or how much ground clearance I want to loose with a drop floor. I won't be rock climbing but I would like to be able to take it anywhere my subi can go, which can surprisingly, is a lot.

Glad to come out of the shadows and hope to start my build over the winter so it is ready by spring.
Attachments
inside outback trailer.png
Interior design
inside outback trailer.png (28.57 KiB) Viewed 820 times
outside outback trailer.png
Exterior profile
outside outback trailer.png (147.88 KiB) Viewed 820 times
The SJ Cruiser, my 5x10 Benroy build http://www.tnttt.com/viewtopic.php?f=50&t=64944
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Re: Introducing myself from Tacoma area

Postby greygoos » Sun Nov 15, 2015 10:10 am

Nice idea. Good luck with your design
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Re: Introducing myself from Tacoma area

Postby halfdome, Danny » Sun Nov 15, 2015 11:34 am

Welcome to the forum.
I was curious if you'll be incorporating the same tail light as your tow vehicle since it looks like your build will mimic the tow vehicle.
There's a teardrop out there with PT Cruiser tail lights and fenders to match the tow vehicle.
Speaking of TOW check out the local North West teardrop group Teardroppers Of Oregon and Washington (TOW) where we have several teardrop gatherings a year.
Hope to see you at one.
:D Danny
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Re: Introducing myself from Tacoma area

Postby tony.latham » Sun Nov 15, 2015 11:55 am

Yrock:

Welcome! I really like the looks of your sketch. You might review your axle location because it looks to me that it's a bit far back which would cause a tongue weight problem for your Subaru. I don't recall the rule of thumb for this.

Here's a sliding bunk you might want to incorporate:
viewtopic.php?f=50&t=59086&start=195

Your post has an echo that I see frequently with new builders:
and the ease of construction afforded by straight panels and straight cuts,
I wondered about that too when I built my first (of three) traditional shaped teardrops. It's a matter of curves vs. angles. And frankly, I think the angles would be more of a challenge than curves. All you need for the curves is a full-sized pattern and a jigsaw. 1/8 Baltic Birch plywood wants to bend. But if that angled build suit's your appetite, go for it.

I also recommend Steve Fredrick's Teardrop Builder's Shop Manual. It's a well illustrated 250 page document. You can get your download here: http://www.campingclassics.com/shopman05.html

He'll show you how to build the 'drop from the inside out and have a dustless-waterproof hatch.

I feel lucky to have stumbled upon it prior to my first build. Here's my build video:



(Two outta three builds ended up with snakes in the shop. What's up with that?)

Cheers!

Tony
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Re: Introducing myself from Tacoma area

Postby yrock87 » Sun Nov 15, 2015 3:03 pm

Tony,
Steve was another of my influences. I should have mentioned him as his website itself is a great resource for ideas, his shop book is something I am likely going to get.
As far as straight edges vs curves... I gathered as much from what I have read here. Once you have more than a square box, maybe one extra corner, it starts to get into some complicated math and therfore complicated cutting. But going back to my though on SIPs, i like Steve's weight /clamp method and my thoughts are using that on the roof is possible if doing flat panels. Everything could be pre cut and wired and would only need assembled. Although Steve's inside out method would be my approach if I decided to go curved.

As to your axle location comment. Yes I agree. This placement was from the trace of the Outback. I would need to move it forward at least a foot or so. Need to figure out the math on that one, but it should be simple because I don't plan on building a full rv from the get go, no heater, aircon, integrated propane, sink/running water, ext at the beginning. I am guessing that without all that stuff my galley will be relatively light, therfore I would need my axle closer to the middle. Max tongue weight is 200lbs on my Outback but I will be aiming for 120-150. I towed a utility trailer 2200 miles from Alaska down here that weighted in at about 2400 lbs total, it had 150 on the tongue and the car/trailer combo drove and tracked like a dream. I was real impressed with the subi on that trip. :-) though you could feel the weight back there when accelerating and braking. I hope to keep the weight on the TD down to 1100 or less, which should mean that I barley feel it back there.

Danny, i may try to imitate the brake lights, but cost is going to be a factor. I don't have the funds to go buy factory lights when I can spend $20 on trailer lights. I might just try to simulate the look with a C shaped running light around a central brake/turn like my car. Also not so sure how I like the cabin door looking like a car door. Just not sure if it is practical. And i still need to figure out how to work the fenders and make it either look like the subi, or at least look neutral.

Thanks for the thoughts guys.
The SJ Cruiser, my 5x10 Benroy build http://www.tnttt.com/viewtopic.php?f=50&t=64944
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Re: Introducing myself from Tacoma area

Postby ratrod71 » Sun Nov 15, 2015 5:39 pm

Welcome. I admire your design elements of using blackout areas to simulate the window profile of the Subaru and the galley spoiler. Happy building. Bryan
Alaskan Benroy build journal: viewtopic.php?f=50&t=61738
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Re: Introducing myself from Tacoma area

Postby yrock87 » Mon Nov 30, 2015 4:21 pm

So thinking more about the curved roof vs. flat panels. I have a curved profile drawing now too. and I moved the axle up to 4 ft from the rear.

I think the wife is onboard now as well, she wants a woody w/ aluminum roof, so the green will be going.
Attachments
outback trailer mod 2.png
curves are based on the outback still
outback trailer mod 2.png (9.75 KiB) Viewed 670 times
outback trailer mod 1.png
outback trailer mod 1.png (9.18 KiB) Viewed 670 times
The SJ Cruiser, my 5x10 Benroy build http://www.tnttt.com/viewtopic.php?f=50&t=64944
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Re: Introducing myself from Tacoma area

Postby halfdome, Danny » Mon Nov 30, 2015 5:13 pm

Image
I like to curved front better and you'll find it's a lot easier to build.
:D Danny
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