by Ron Miller
My “trailer on a toon” project came to fruition one evening while sitting in my backyard with my wife discussing some of the more memorable vacations we had. We both agreed that our recently purchased Chalet hard sided folding trailer was a great deal of fun, but that the lack of privacy at camp grounds was always an issue with us. We also agreed that time spent on or near the water was a high priority, and that Lake Powell was one of our favorite spots. We considered a speed boat purchase, but we both felt it would probably only see the water a few days a year. Quite simply, I blurted out, “Why not put the Chalet on top of a pontoon boat?”
The response from her was that I probably had one too many adult beverages and that it was time for bed. The idea lingered in the back of my head for a couple of months until I got the tape measure out, measured the Chalet and started making chalk marks on the driveway. Then it was serious. Continue Reading »
by David Lacey
The X-Permit Cabin is an exercise to create a livable space that will be built on a salvaged travel trailer frame. It will be self sustainable, off grid, and will be built without building permits because it is a “travel trailer” and will be registered as such. The site is beside the ocean in Canada. The actual location will be revealed as time goes on. The point of this is to circumvent onerous permits and inspections that come with “permanent” structures. XPC will be an exercise in civics, construction, and innovation. I hope you follow us as we move forward.
Certainly, “tiny homes” have been built before and many are like the one we are building, on a trailer, for various reasons. This one is a personal experiment in building a livable space in a maximum of 135 square feet. There probably won’t be “grand innovation” involved, but the completed cabin on wheels must have the charm and friendly atmosphere of an old seaside cottage distilled into the space allocated. Continue Reading »
By Kyle Harvey
I have spent much of my adult life thinking about living spaces. For quite some time, as a touring musician, sleeping arrangements were made on the fly. Sometimes a couch and many times a floor, finding a place to crash after a show on the road was almost always an adventure. In the event that we were unable to find a place to stay, we could always find a piece of ground underneath the stars in the sky. Camping was common and comfortable, in warmer months. On occasion it meant sleeping on top of picnic tables at rest stops. Once, it even meant sleeping directly on the pavement in a bank parking lot, two blocks off of the Vegas Strip, complete with a good pair cowboy boots under my head taking the place of a pillow. While not always ideal, it was most certainly romantic.
Naturally, I have spent a great deal of time pondering society’s perception of shelter and home, which has led me to looking up their definitions, respectively. According to Mirriam-Webster’s online dictionary, shelter is something that covers or affords protection. Further, their definition of home is not only one’s place of residence, but also the social unit formed by a family living together.
Sharon Pieniak is living the ultimate road trip. In 2007, she realized that her work had become truly location-independent after having established a successful graphic design business and taken her work on many vacations. So, she purchased a new 20’ Airstream travel trailer and hit the road. She has been living, working and traveling in it since.
Her aim was to spend her free time satisfying her insatiable wanderlust and photographing the beauty of America. Initially an experiment in nomadic living, it has become a way of life for her now that she finds hard to beat. “I feel much more connected with the art of living now,” she says, “It’s nice, because wherever I go, I’m at home, and my neighbors are usually some of the nicest people around.” Her small home on wheels allows Sharon and her dog Harley to explore a continuous trail of new and beautiful places and brings a greater portion of the world into their everyday life.
Continue Reading »
Because we bought our trailer used and it was formerly a 1981 (camping) travel trailer it had some signs of wear and tear; namely rust. Structurally it is as sound as the day it rolled off the assembly line. But because it spent some time on the east coast the salinity of the air made it prematurely age and the paint/primer at some point gave way to rust spots and “age spots.” Luckily we own both an air compressor and a sandblaster – the very tools needed to prepare the trailer for primer.
Sandblasting is a general term used to describe the act of propelling very fine bits of material (play sand in this case) at high-velocity to clean a surface. A sandblasting setup usually consists of three different parts: the abrasive itself, an air compressor (seen below), and a blaster nozzle. By launching small bits of abrasive at the surface at a high speed, all imperfections are knocked loose and can then be easily washed off, creating an incredibly smooth surface upon which to lay the new layer of paint. Before we can do that though (which will come much later, I imagine) we need to prime. Why? Primer spray (in this case we used Krylon grey primer) stops rust and prevents corrosion. Continue Reading »
Looking for a carpenter/builder to work with a chemically sensitive professiional author/journalist and her partner, who want to build a vardo travel trailer for traveling/living. I will have construction plans made and ready. Will probably be on an 8 by 12 or 14 trailer, with 2-3 by 8 porch.
Need to be on site for the entire build to test nontoxic materials for tolerance. Vardo will have compost toilet, outdoor shower on porch, simple sink setup inside with grey water tank and hose hookup, very small hot water tank, wired with shielded wiring for both 12 volt and 110, curved metal or very thin ceramic roof, tile floors, either dragon board or very low terpene wood walls.
If wood walls, they will be tongue and groove. Denim or wool insulation, a breathable wall system to minimize mold, and good ventilation including built in fans. No plywood, formaldehyde, laminates, styrofoam, vinyl, urethane, fiberglass, etc. Possibly some other features adapted from small rv’s I’ve seen. Take a look at Portland Alternative Dwellings’ Don Vardo for an example of a beautiful simple vardo.
I need to keep costs down as I have set aside funds but am planning to be frugal where possible. If someone has time and interest, please write me with your fees for such a project, previous experience etc., where you live, if you have land where we can build and a good metal shed to store construction materials, your schedule, and any other relevanr information.
Prefer southeast, Texas, or possibly southwest for the build, ie a climate that is warm and sunny, and hoping to start late spring. Don’t want to build up north. If you want to travel to live on site for the build I can possibly find us a spot. I’ve been told it can take 400-500 hours for the total build. Both some experience in carpentry/construction and patience, as well as willingness to work with all nontoxic materials, is important. Thanks!
Please email firstname.lastname@example.org if interested.