Central Montana Builder

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Central Montana Builder

Postby SMCbivy9007 » Sun Sep 10, 2017 8:37 pm

Hello, Glen Pegg here. I'm a newby to the site(and to the forum scene) but not so the building scene.

My father began building Snowy Mountain Campers in Lewistown, Montana in 1960, the same year I was born. He built travel trailers and pickup campers through the mid 1990's when many of the small RV manufacturers vanished. Needless to say, I began as a tiny janitor and by the end of the period I had a hand in building and repairing just about everything. I took up engineering but never lost sight of the RV lifestyle, particularly tiny camp trailers.

About 5 years ago, i started planning a teardrop trailer that would expand to twice it's original size and you could stand up in. The parameters were simple, it had to be fully functional closed as well as open. I did not want to have to open my little land yacht every time I wanted a short snooze or a sandwich. I began arduously bending steel tubing for the three structures it would take to complete my goal. Then there was hours of welding and securing components, etc. At this point I had three structure that nested and could be opened into the trailer I had planned. After several years of near completions, only to tear it apart because it "wasn't right". I still had a lot of work to finish the project. I also found I was using far too many materials to be a viable product, should I decide to take it to that stage. Having three walls meant that if I wanted one opening window when closed I needed three perfectly aligned windows. I would also need two doors, etc. One morning after a well deserved sleep, I had an idea that would simplify the project to just two structures. Fold it completely back on itself.

Abandoning my previous project, I set out to build that structure. I used regular RV building methods to produce a prototype, but I found out that using those building techniques made it too wobbly and heavy. I hit the chalkboard again and devised a structure utilizing a 2"X2" aluminum exoskeleton along with structurally engineered wall panels that was both incredibly strong and extremely light weight. I am so happy with the results that I tried building several teardrops using the same technique and - WOW - a 600 pound 48X96 teardrop with a full box steel frame.

I am glad to be a part of the tiny travel trailer culture and happy to be on this site. I will gladly try to answer any questions I can regarding history, construction or available products.151031151033151038151014151007151004
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Re: Central Montana Builder

Postby friz » Mon Sep 11, 2017 4:47 pm

Some very cool stuff. Welcome to the group. I'm sure your experience and creativity will be valuable to us.
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Re: Central Montana Builder

Postby lee senn » Sat Sep 30, 2017 9:38 pm

Glen Welcome to the forum. I really like your idea for a tear, I've on occasion visualized something similar but never brought it to fruition . Glad to see something that really works. Keep us posted and please provide some interior photos. Thanks Lee
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Re: Central Montana Builder

Postby jim_manley » Sun Oct 01, 2017 7:52 pm

Hey Glenn!

I live and teach computing, robotics, and math between Billings and Miles City, and I also have a place in East Glacier Park to escape to during the holidays and Summers. So, I pass right through Lewistown when transiting between the two, although I usually get to Lewistown around 8 PM Friday nights heading Northbound, and around 7:30 PM when heading Southbound on Sundays (or Mondays when I rarely get off on a federal holiday, such as Memorial and Labor Days). Summers are pretty much wide open though, assuming I don't wind up teaching Summer courses, which hasn't happened, yet.

Your ideas are very cool, and while my preference is for foamies, being an engineer, I'm always looking for and admiring great ideas (which sometimes come from the distant past). My current brain fart collection includes a recent series of designs I'm playing around with that are described at http://www.tnttt.com/viewtopic.php?f=50&t=69057 and http://www.tnttt.com/viewtopic.php?f=40&t=68753 .

Perhaps one of these days we can cross paths at one of the incredible parks we're so lucky to live among, if not our hometowns. In the meantime, keep up the great work!

All the Best,
"Education isn't the filling of a pail, but the lighting of a fire." -- Plutarch ... or W.B. Yeats ... or ...

"In theory, theory and practice are the same ... in practice, they aren't!" -- Some Engineer

"Just when you think you have all the answers ... they change all the questions!" -- Murphy of Murphy, Dewey, Screwem, and Howe, LLP

What I'd love to build: ... What I'll probably wind up with:
.....Image................ Image
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