Building The Atma Travelear Teardrop

...ask your questions in the appropriate forums BUT document your build here...preferably in a single thread...dates for updates, are appreciated....

Re: Building The Atma Travelear Teardrop - Update 10/15 pg 3

Postby BuildingForFun » Mon Aug 11, 2014 10:55 am

DMcCam wrote:Hi Everyone,

We fixed a few things this weekend. The doors needed another 1/8" spacer on the wall side of the hinges for the seal to seat correctly. Once those were in place the doors sealed nice and tight. I made the offset blocks for the interior handle/latches and installed them. With the cabin sealing, we felt it was time to put the mattress inside! We got to finally close the doors and lie down on our new bed, what a nice milestone!

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Here a shot of the driver's side all closed up.

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With the door open you can see how the 'D' rubber seal fits into the 'T' molding.

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First look at the almost finished interior. We still have to install the curtains, make then install the door skirts and trim off the long tails of the exterior door handles flush with the interior latches.

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Here's how the aft area is shaping up. I found some 1/2" vinyl closed cell weather seal at Ace Hardware for the inner door seal. We'll install that on Wednesday.

All the best,

Dave


Dave, on the 2nd photo, what did you use for the latching system? I looked up the outside handles, from So-Cal speed shop, but wandering if you could let me know what components were used on the latch system, and also where you got the hinges. Thanks so much. Caleb.
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Re: Building The Atma Travelear Teardrop - Update 10/15 pg 3

Postby DMcCam » Thu Aug 14, 2014 1:20 pm

BuildingForFun wrote:Dave, on the 2nd photo, what did you use for the latching system?


Hi Caleb,

Those latches were purchased locally at an RV supplier as a close out so I couldn't pass them up. Grant has them under door hardware and latches: http://www.teardrops.net/teardroptrailerparts.html If mine fail, he'll be getting the replacement call.

My inside catches were custom fabricated from 1/8" stainless steel plate with stainless screws. You could use anything that can take the pressure.

I got my hinges from etrailer here: http://www.etrailer.com/Enclosed-Trailer-Parts/Redline/383700.html I had to custom make 3/8" shims for the wall side to offset the hinges to allow for the 'D' seals.

Cheers,

Dave
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Re: Building The Atma Travelear Teardrop

Postby eagle351 » Fri Aug 22, 2014 7:22 am

Dear Dave,

I sent you a PM, but since I am new to the forums, I thought I might post my request here, also.

Like so many others, I am just astounded by your Atma Travelear! Thanks so much for sharing it and inspiring the rest of us!

Would it be possible to get a copy of the dimensional plans? Or do you have plans in the works to sell the plans? If so, I would like to know what you would charge to get a set!

Thanks again for such a beautiful teardrop!

Best Wishes,
Mike
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Re: Building The Atma Travelear Teardrop

Postby DMcCam » Sun Aug 24, 2014 5:40 pm

eagle351 wrote:Would it be possible to get a copy of the dimensional plans? Or do you have plans in the works to sell the plans? If so, I would like to know what you would charge to get a set!


Hi Mike, Thank you so very much for your kindness and enthusiasm for my Atma Travelear design. I've had such a response to my design that I am in the process of making a complete set of plans for it. I hope to have them done before Christmas...hopefully. A lot of work needs to be done though.

Cheers,

Dave
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Re: Building The Atma Travelear Teardrop

Postby DMcCam » Sun Aug 24, 2014 5:42 pm

Howdy Everyone, Thanks to the fantastic Mr. Sam (DesertMoose) our hatch issues have been sorted out! It took a couple of tries because of the unique geometry (weight and the long arc to allow for a 6' 6" height). Now my beautiful girl can easily open and close her hatch! A BIG THANK YOU SAM!!!!

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Here's a picture showing how he solved the puzzle. We ended up with 120LB-28" struts. We mounted the upper bracket 11" from the hinge center and the lower one to the counter and wall at about 20"-21" from the hinge center (I'll add a plan with the proper dimensions soon).

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Here you can see my open hatch sitting nicely over my 6'2" head; yeah!

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This is the driver's side strut. As you can see, I have a bunch of holes to patch!

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The passager's side strut...more holes. :)

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Sam's custom lower mounting bracket. Looks factory made!

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Here's the upper one!

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I also did a few little galley mods to better organize our pan storage area.

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I first added a little wire shelf/rack for the paper plates and such.

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I found this deco door organizer from Bed Bath and Beyond. It normally hangs over the door with two hook ends but that wouldn't work with inlay doors. I cut off the ends and mounted it with screws.

More soon,

Dave
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Re: Building The Atma Travelear Teardrop

Postby Adventure Time » Mon Aug 25, 2014 6:19 am

Hi, I'm new to the forum. Wish I would have found this site and your build journal before I started. I am working on some door seals right now. After going through your posts, it looks like the door seals to the outside aluminum. If so, have you ever had any leaks with that method? Also is that how people are normally sealing their doors when they are scratch built?
I was reading another guys journal and in one pic there was a hole in the side of his TD, the next pic there was a finished door in it, with him sitting in it. I actually felt discouraged and wish I would have bought my doors instead of making them. lol They will no doubt be the hardest part to get right for me.
I haven't bought the exterior skin yet. Any draw backs to using the anodized? I didn't even know that was available till I saw you did it. I plan on spending a lot of time on the Texas coast, anodized would be a good idea. I guess there is nothing to do about the trim though. Did you use regular mill finish trim?
I am really striving to have a finished product with the quality yours has. Not that I'll hit it in my first build but you have given me something to shoot for.
One last question for you, what is the history of Atma? Was it a company or a designer? I tried to look it up, most of the first page hits had to do with you and a few others that built like you did.
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Re: Building The Atma Travelear Teardrop

Postby DMcCam » Mon Aug 25, 2014 10:17 am

Welcome Adventure Time, I'm so sorry to hear the frustration in your post. Let me try and answer your questions one at a time.

Adventure Time wrote:I am working on some door seals right now. After going through your posts, it looks like the door seals to the outside aluminum. If so, have you ever had any leaks with that method? Also is that how people are normally sealing their doors when they are scratch built?


Probably the best advise I can give in regards to doors, seals, methods and everything else teardrop is Grant Whipp at http://lilbear.teardrops.net/ He has all the moldings that I bought and used. I cannot stress how helpful and kind Grant was to me. Yes, the method I used is pretty common. My doors use "T" molding on the exterior to hold the 'D' seal. No leaks at all. I actually built an inner seal just in case it did leak but it hasn't been necessary. Here's a link to my build thread that shows the aluminum being applied. http://www.tnttt.com/viewtopic.php?f=50&t=35081&start=390 Follow it for a couple of pages to see a little more how-to with the doors. It's not a complete step-by-step but it might help. Another invaluable reference was Steve Fredrick's shop manual http://www.campingclassics.com/ It's great for making everything and I used it often. The only down side is it's specifically for woody trailers so there is nothing in it to help with the aluminum work.

Adventure Time wrote:I haven't bought the exterior skin yet. Any draw backs to using the anodized? I guess there is nothing to do about the trim though. Did you use regular mill finish trim?

We went anodized for durability and low maintenance. It's basically wash, dry and go. We did use the mill finish on the trim but so far, it's been the same. We got the anodized aluminum from Grant too.

Adventure Time wrote:One last question for you, what is the history of Atma? Was it a company or a designer?


Interesting that you thought the design was from an old manufacturer. I'm the designer of the trailer and came up with the name from the desire to keep with pre-WWII streamlining. 'Atma' means 'spirit or soul' in Sanskrit, so it's a travel tear for our spirits or Atma Travelear! All of the teardrop campers we've met are very happy campers indeed. We figured the the double meaning of 'spirit' as in 'happy or joyful' was too good to pass up.

Please let me know if I can help you further.

Warmest Regards,

Dave
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Re: Building The Atma Travelear Teardrop

Postby jonw » Mon Aug 25, 2014 11:01 am

Dave - struts and mods look great.
Sam's the man! Ask him for a demo of his shower setup :D
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Re: Building The Atma Travelear Teardrop

Postby Adventure Time » Tue Aug 26, 2014 6:44 am

You designed it and named it! I love it. I am trying to think of the name brand of my trailer. I was going to order the mini cooper emblem. The one that says "mini" with the wings and put that on the back hatch. I love wings in logos like Chrysler and your Atma logo. I like the thought of putting the Taylor guitar logo on the back hatch and making the inside look like a guitar, mirrored grain on the ceiling, inlay for trim with part of a fret board going across the roof, something like that. I am going to use inlay for instruments but not going all the way 'guitar' inside. I think the right designer can make it look classy, I'm afraid I would just make it look cheesy.
The most important mech thing from reading your thread ( I believe it was yours) was the derating of the tortion axle. The one I used seems too stiff. I did weld it in a way that I can cut it off rather easily if it's just too bumpy of a ride.
Do you design for a living? Atma does not appear to be the first thing you have designed.
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Re: Building The Atma Travelear Teardrop

Postby DMcCam » Tue Aug 26, 2014 11:41 am

Thanks Jon!

Adventure Time wrote:The most important mech thing from reading your thread ( I believe it was yours) was the derating of the tortion axle. The one I used seems too stiff. I did weld it in a way that I can cut it off rather easily if it's just too bumpy of a ride.
Do you design for a living? Atma does not appear to be the first thing you have designed.


Hi Adventure Time, Sounds like you have some excellent design ideas for your teardrop. Actually they don't do anything to the axle but give it a different rating on paper; it's still a 2K axle. The A.T. got a bit heavier than I planned because of the extra weight of the .063 aluminum. She rides perfectly with the 2K though.

Yes indeed, I've been a professional artist for about 37 years now.

All the Best,

Dave
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Re: Building The Atma Travelear Teardrop

Postby Adventure Time » Wed Aug 27, 2014 4:12 am

I consider myself an industrial designer but an artist by no means. I copy all I can from other peoples designs that I think are best/coolest then I invent the rest. I do try to make my inventions look as cool as possible. I build my prototypes with a cost is no object approach then try to make my production models as much like the prototypes as I can. Where can I see some of your work? My business that is going well right now is run-rocket.com I need a new website for that invention but word of mouth has carried it so far.
I found .050 sheets of mill finish but they are 5x12 and 5x10 so I can do this with out seams. But it looks to add about 100 lbs with all the trim.
.063! was that the necessary minimum for anodized?
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Re: Building The Atma Travelear Teardrop

Postby DMcCam » Wed Aug 27, 2014 7:21 pm

Adventure Time wrote:.063! was that the necessary minimum for anodized?

Howdy Adventure Time, Actually, no, it was necessary because I needed 5'x12' to cover my roof with no seams and the only anodized aluminum on the west coast that big was .063. If I could have used 4'x10' I could have used .040 as I did on my outer walls.

All the Best,

Dave

Oh, My website is http://www.davidmccamant.com/
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Re: Building The Atma Travelear Teardrop

Postby serdar » Sat Aug 30, 2014 6:03 am

Hi,
can you inform us about size and power of (how many newtons each) new gas struts?
Regards,
Serdar
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Re: Building The Atma Travelear Teardrop

Postby DMcCam » Mon Sep 01, 2014 7:56 pm

serdar wrote:Hi,
can you inform us about size and power of (how many newtons each) new gas struts?
Regards,
Serdar


Hi Serdar,

I used an online conversion for you so it might or might not be correct. The struts are 120 pounds or 533.786592 newtons at 28" long.

All the Best,

Dave
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Re: Building The Atma Travelear Teardrop

Postby serdar » Thu Sep 11, 2014 5:19 am

Thanks very much Dave.
Probably numbers are correct.
I calculated as 450 N each for my build which is very similar to yours ;)

thanks again,
Serdar
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