lets talk about the best way to keep our teardrops dry

Let's protect our teardrops! Let's talk sunbrella, carports, sheds and garages..

Re: lets talk about the best way to keep our teardrops dry

Postby synaps3 » Mon Jul 02, 2012 10:20 pm

I built this:

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It's not pretty, but was really cheap. I ended up paying more in fines from not applying for building permits than the carport itself! :lol: / :x

The posts are 4x4s stuck in the ground with concrete. The roof is just MDF coated in that nasty rubber paint we all love / hate. I used a 5-gal bucket per roof segment. It's totally waterproof, and keeps my tools dry. Since this picture was taken, I painted the area to the right with exterior-grade paint so that it holds up longer. It's definitely no heirloom shed, but it'll outlast the amount of time I'm going to spend living in the house I'm in now, we're upgrading to a bigger one in a couple of years. :lol:
-- Dave

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Re: lets talk about the best way to keep our teardrops dry

Postby jeff0520 » Sun Jul 08, 2012 2:30 pm

I REALLY hate having to repair things I've already built. That's why I plan on covering the Command Post with 14 oz Volan finish fiberglass fabric and West System 105 epoxy. I know it's overkill, but hopefully that will give me a good 20 years service before I have to refinish it. :) Heck, If there's enough left on the roll, I may just put down two layers of fabric in my layup. :twisted:
I've also deleted every external hatch I thought I could get by without. Shore power inlet will be through the floor where gravity will be on my side. Connectors from the tongue box where the batteries will live will be in the shared wall between the cabin and tongue box, and will be the waterproof variety anyway. Two windows, one door, a battery box access hatch, and a roof vent will be the only openings in a skin like a boat hull.
Hypno-Toad's Command Post, the build thread! http://www.tnttt.com/viewtopic.php?f=50&t=50384

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Re: lets talk about the best way to keep our teardrops dry

Postby Oldragbaggers » Sun Jul 08, 2012 7:47 pm

You're building just like I did. I have 2 layers of 12 oz. cloth on my roof and hatch (that wasn't really planned.....) and one layer of 6 oz. cloth on my side walls. Resin, resin and more resin. It really is an upside down hull at this point.
Life is sooooo good.........
Sail...camp....bike...repeat
Becky

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Re: lets talk about the best way to keep our teardrops dry

Postby jeff0520 » Sun Jul 08, 2012 9:52 pm

No doubt. I figure fiberglass is lightweight. If the extra fabric and resin keeps it watertight and tough, it's worth the effort. Besides, I might roll over into the river and float to safety on the trailer. :bounce:
Hypno-Toad's Command Post, the build thread! http://www.tnttt.com/viewtopic.php?f=50&t=50384

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Re: lets talk about the best way to keep our teardrops dry

Postby oth47 » Tue Jul 24, 2012 6:31 am

I have my teardrop parked crosswise in one lane of my carport and still have room to park my truck.Not many campers can you do that with.. :)
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Re: lets talk about the best way to keep our teardrops dry

Postby Jim T » Sun Sep 02, 2012 10:12 am

Mike, I am very sorry to hear about your delamination problems. I know when I pulled my "mummified" tarp off my trailer one fall, and found the skin wrinkled, I wanted to cry. :cry: After reskining the trailer, I am still having delamination problems on the inner wall.
My biggest problem is this vicious Texas sun. We all go to great pains to make our trailers waterproof, and since the top is curved, there is not a whole lot of place for water to collect. I tried the epoxy coated by two layers of UV resistant urethane, and the epoxy started peeling after 6 months. My stop gap protection right now is 4 canvas tarps tied together to make a canvas cover 18' x 24'. The canvas breathes, and although it is not waterproof, it does shed off most of the water, and as soon as the wind hits it dries very quickly. The canvas also tends to "lay" on the trailer, so it does not have to be tied down as much, and it holds up much better to the constant blowing of the wind than a standard tarp does (I live on top of a hill).
Having said all that, my goal is the permanent shelter. I can build one for the same amount of money that a good cover would cost, and it would enable me to work on the trailer without having to remove and replace the cover every time. And if I need it, I can always move the trailer and have a covered garage!
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Re: lets talk about the best way to keep our teardrops dry

Postby David_L6 » Sat Nov 17, 2012 9:46 am

If it's made of wood, all you can do is slow down problems - not stop them completely. I raced wooden outboard hydroplanes for 25+ years. The best way to prevent sun (UV) and moisture damage that I know of is quality wood and several coats of epoxy (West System is the most popular) and then several coats of paint. Colored paint. Not clear and not varnish. You need UV protection and we've not found a clear that's all that good. Awlgrip and Imron are both good. We were concerned about weight with the hydros so we used as few coats as we thought we could get by with. You shouldn't have to be concerned about an extra 25 pounds on a trailer. If I were building a wooden trailer I'd use okumee marine grade plywood, 3 or 4 coats of West System (it is a pain sanding between coats!), then at least two coats of one of the above paints in whatever color I wanted, and then finally a couple of coats of clear over the color.
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Re: lets talk about the best way to keep our teardrops dry

Postby Martinjmpr » Fri Mar 29, 2013 11:29 am

Bubbles sits under a cover the wife got off of Amazon last year, and over that a pop-up type awning (Eze-up type) that we got last year at Lowe's.

You can see the Eze-up in this pic from a few weeks ago:

Image

Unfortunately, high winds are not uncommon in this part of the country and our Eze-up had already been damaged once. Finally, last Thursday a particularly strong series of gusts tore it up and flipped it into the neighbor's yard. And two days later we got the biggest snowstorm of the season, about a foot of heavy, wet snow:

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Now, one thing we learned last year was to never, never, ever, let a wet cover sit on the wood! So the cover will be coming off tonight now that the snow has melted off. This will also allow the trailer to dry off.

Last year when we got back from Oregon we put a layer of deck sealant (thompson's water-seal) and over that a layer of polyurethane spar varnish. As you can see from the pic above (which was taken After bubbles had sat outside all winter) the finish still looks pretty good.

However, we're realistic: We understand that in this environment, we're going to probably have to figure on sanding and re-varnishing every year.

Also with regards to the cover (which is already torn in several places thanks to our too-sharp metal rain gutters) and the Eze-up, I think I've convinced Liz that we need to regard those like the bodyguards that surround a high-ranking official: They're "expendable." So I imagine we'll be buying a new eze-up and a new cover every year, but that's still a lot less expensive than renting a covered storage unit. In fact, I calculated it and if we bought a new cover every 6 months and a new Eze-up every year, it still wouldn't add up to half of what indoor storage would cost!
Martin and Liz and our new [email protected] Clamshell "Livia"

Our old Teardrop "bubbles"
Bubbles version 2.0 build thread!

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Re: lets talk about the best way to keep our teardrops dry

Postby Dansworld77 » Mon Apr 29, 2013 5:35 pm

I've got two of the "Costco Barns" set up end-to-end along the side of my house with a big tarp tied down over the seam between them, which I use as a workshop and storage area. I only paid $218 a piece for them, and they work great for weather protection with good durability. All toll, with lights I wired up in them, I've got 400 square feet of space in my two for less than $600.

Make sure you secure them to the ground really well though. If they aren't staked down or secured well enough they can and will blow away in a good wind, with disastrous results (potential for serious injury or property damage).

Here's a couple images of them that I pulled off of google to show you all what I'm talking about.

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Re: lets talk about the best way to keep our teardrops dry

Postby tac422 » Wed May 01, 2013 11:58 am

I have a similar portable garage, and used those metal things that screw into the ground to tie dogs to.
I put one on each leg/post through the foot. I got them at the local dollar tree, they work very well.
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Re: lets talk about the best way to keep our teardrops dry

Postby Dansworld77 » Wed May 01, 2013 10:52 pm

Fortunately mine are kind of wedged between my house and my fence with just a couple inches wiggle room on each side, so they're pretty protected from the wind. I still staked them down with the straight tent stake style posts that they came with though. I figure better safe than sorry.
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Re: lets talk about the best way to keep our teardrops dry

Postby nhstt » Thu May 09, 2013 8:06 am

jeff0520 wrote:I REALLY hate having to repair things I've already built. That's why I plan on covering the Command Post with 14 oz Volan finish fiberglass fabric and West System 105 epoxy. I know it's overkill, but hopefully that will give me a good 20 years service before I have to refinish it. :) Heck, If there's enough left on the roll, I may just put down two layers of fabric in my layup. :twisted:
I've also deleted every external hatch I thought I could get by without. Shore power inlet will be through the floor where gravity will be on my side. Connectors from the tongue box where the batteries will live will be in the shared wall between the cabin and tongue box, and will be the waterproof variety anyway. Two windows, one door, a battery box access hatch, and a roof vent will be the only openings in a skin like a boat hull.


Can I paint for the summer so I can get out there, then try Fiberglass as my fall project? :thinking:
Love the shore power inlet idea-I'll be stealing that idea :twisted:
I've got one door two portholes and my hatch-Less is more(waterproof) for this gal :thumbsup:
Karen at the Ladybug-out build journal viewtopic.php?f=50&t=55602
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Re: lets talk about the best way to keep our teardrops dry

Postby tim_hart » Wed Jun 12, 2013 6:04 pm

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Paha Que...

Postby Martinjmpr » Mon Oct 28, 2013 12:14 pm

We just got a custom-made Paha Que cover and the fit is great! Pics will follow.

Our recipe for protection is the form-fitting Paha Que cover + an EZ-up type canopy. The canopy is held to the ground with 4 5 gallon buckets, each of which has a full 60lb bag of concrete in it, with a long screw in I-bolt (I put a bolt and a washer - the biggest washer I could fit - onto the I-bolt before I submerged it into the hardening concrete, so I'm pretty sure the bolt won't pull out.) Straps are ratchet straps and I plan on attaching it to the I bolts and to the frame of the EZ-up with snap links (or as you civilians call them, "Carabiners" :R ) so they can't accidentally unhook (we learned that lesson the hard way.)

BTW, those pop-ups can often be found at sporting goods stores, Harbor Freight or other stores on sale. I think if you're using one of those to protect your teardrop, you have to regard it as somewhat disposable. We've bought 3 in the last 2 years, and honestly, if we get a year out of one, and we pay $60 or so (you can find them that cheap on sale) then we paid $5/month which is pretty reasonable.
Martin and Liz and our new [email protected] Clamshell "Livia"

Our old Teardrop "bubbles"
Bubbles version 2.0 build thread!

Our Facebook group:
Colorado Teardroppers and Tiny Trailers Camping Group (FB)

States we've visited with Bubbles and Livia: Image
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Re: lets talk about the best way to keep our teardrops dry

Postby GPW » Thu Jan 09, 2014 8:16 am

Well then , although it’s really nice to have a big shed or garage , that’s not always possible eh ? Our Foamie’ trailers live Outside ALL the time , rain (which we have a LOT of :frightened: ) , Heat , cold, storms ... No problems !!! One almost 3 years now ... still dry as toast inside !!! ;) Just sayin’ :roll:

JMHO : I really believe a skin or covering over the plywood relieves the surface areas that always seem to fail first , especially when placed under tension loads as in bent plywood applications ... :thinking: If the plywood doesn’t fail , there’s no leaks huh ?
There’s no place like Foam !
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