My Taj Ma-Small!
2/10/12 update: SOLD!!!
Enjoy the pictures- I enjoyed making the camper!!
This is my Subaru (can tow 2,ooo lbs) and Trailer in Sedona- (at the start of road testing cross country, and succeeding beautifully!) the 3,000 mile road trip, complete with high-intensity crosswinds in Texas, rain in the Mississippi flooding areas and total saturating dew and moisture on the Virginia coast. It stayed completely dry inside, completely waterproof outside. I got waves, smiles and compliments every mile of the way!
The trailer is built on a Big Tex SL19 – 750 lb single axle motorcycle hauler. Click here for factory specs. I have removed the back fold-down gate to save on weight. Keeping the rails of the trailer intact, I built the trailer width out on top of the metal side rails to 6 feet wide- to fit the futon. The camper is bolted to the trailer frame on all sides- 10 different places. The exterior is finished with “Elasteck” roof membrane and paint-(like “Eddy’s” product) ~3 coats in all. It is completely waterproof.
The white underside is PVC tub-surround material, 1/8 ” thick, curved, connecting to the camper and to the trailer, and around the wheels, for complete waterproofing and road splash. All connections are glued (liquid nails) and screwed. Hurricane ties and other fastening hardware were used throughout. All gaps filled with GreatStuff insulating expanding foam.
The back wall (doorway) and side windows and side platforms are framed with 2×3’s. The rest of the frame is 1-1/2 x 1-1/2 furring. The sheathing is 1/4″ luan, bent to give the aerodynamic and cute shape. The doors are 1/2″ ply. The trim is aluminum drip edge, and/or PVC bull-nose curved arch material- completely waterproof and caulked with silicone based caulking. The front is covered with aluminum roof flashing to give durability and charm. Flashing adhesive was used on all metal. There are 2 chest-style pull-handles on the front, and the trailer can be moved/ maneuvered easily by one capable person when empty, 2 when loaded. Click on photos for larger view.
The trailer has rear and side lights- I added an extra set of rear 3-way lights (running, turning and brake). I have also added a REAR VIEW CAMERA!!! It is wired to be on at all times, day or night, when car headlights are on, and trailer lights are hooked up. (you will need your own hitch and hook up on your vehicle.) The camera signals remotely to the monitor, which plugs in to your car’s 12-volt cigarette lighter. I attached the monitor to my rear-view mirror for quick reflex viewing when changing lanes, etc. I always knew what was going on behind me and in blind spots while driving. This was an incredibly comforting visual addition to driving!
The windows are double paned and slide open to about 10 inches. Shown here with easily removable panels for highway/ travel protection. The sky window also has a spring-hinged panel to keep the window protected on the highway, or for dark sleeping and privacy. The exterior is waterproof, (though the surface rippled a bit when the elastic paint was drying in the Arizona sun. It is merely cosmetic.)
The camper has a platform for a 6′ x 4’3″ futon bed, sleeps 2. The platform is removable in 2 sections to roll in a motorcycle all the way to the front (aluminum ramp included)- leaving plenty of storage room in the sides and back. Or, remove half of the platform and tuck the futon up halfway, into a couch.
Enjoy the stars at night with the sky window, sunlight in the day time.The side windows open about 10 inches, allowing fresh air and sunlight. Cover them with the protective panels, easily removed and replaced, for highway travel.
The floor is 2″ pressure treated lumber, and I have sprayed with GreatStuff expanding foam for moisture barrier and warmth between the boards. I have a couple left-over sheets of 1/8 ” luan down for motorcycle dirt.
There are metal tie-downs welded to the frame in all 4 corners for your motorcycle. The walls and ceiling are insulated with 1″ rigid foam board. While driving through the desert heat, my water bottles in my car got so hot they were undrinkable. The water bottles in the insulated TRAILER were cool as a mountain stream!!!
Plenty of room and storage!
Removable futon platform…
Remove the platform for your motorcycle
remove 1/2 the platform and make the futon a couch
Storage in the Sterlite drawers, and under the bed. Go camping in style!!I have left the interior unfinished. For interior finishing, I was going to cover the ceiling and walls with lightweight fabric, but since I could not decide between something “safe and sensible” like beige linen/canvas – or something rockstar-fun like pink faux-fur leopard print and a twirling disco ball, I figured I’d leave the personal taste to the new owner!!
I had a blast building it, and the intention of selling it when I was done. She has proven completely roadworthy, gracing through pouring rain, high winds and bumps! The trailer itself has roughly 6,000 miles on it (MA to AZ, round trip) and the camper part has roughly 3,000 miles on it (AZ to MA one way)
TOTAL WEIGHT with camper -approx. 1150 lbs total (truck scale)
CAN TOW: approx 800 lbs more
CAMPER LENGTH: Approx 9’6″ exterior plus 34″ (+/-) hitch.
CAMPER WIDTH: 6’3″ exterior, 6′ (+/-) interior
INSIDE FLOOR MEASURES: approx 4’3″ wide by 9′ long.
CAMPER HEIGHT: 5’9″ at highest interior peak, approx. 7’3″ road height exterior.
Double-paned window, one on each side, tight in metal track, opens to about 10″, each with road cover.
Acrylic plexi-glass sky window on front, with privacy/ blackout/ road cover.
Back door opening 4’wide by 5′ tall. 2 barn style doors on back, one with 2- barrel slide bolts inside. Locks with a padlock on the outside, also with 2 strong-tie straps screwed in for secure road travel.
TRAILER HITCH LOCK included for secure hitch connection and theft prevention.
Continue below for construction and framing photos:-)
The 4 x 4 x 8 plywood box got me out there, my stuff all dry. Now to remove that and start the platform and frame of the camper.
Starting the frame, and the back wall. Square, level and plumb!
Starting the Luan sheathing and roof
Insulation. Late nights and moonlight.
Finishing the walls, and the first coat of Elastec. Making the openings for the windows.
Getting the doors on.
Sealing the insides with GreatStuff
Checking out the road-a-bility!