Teardrop Trailer – Build Day 1

IT BEGINS!

WorkspaceTHE WORKSPACE
My workspace is not big but it’ll make do. The taped area is 5×8′ which will be the footprint of the trailer shell.

MaterialsLUMBER
I don’t have a truck and there was no way all of this would fit in my hatchback so I got a hand from a stranger with a truck whom I found on TaskRabbit. An interesting experience and now I have a go-to guy with a truck.

I chose the type of wood  by weight and cost. I want a very lightweight trailer and plan to get back some water resistance and longevity with really good wood sealer and marine paint.

In the blurry photo above you see: (7) 4×8′ 1/4″ Sheets of luan for the sides and the roof, (2) 4×8′ 1/2″ Sheets of CDX Plywood for the floor,  and (6) 2×2″s and (6) 2×3″s for framing the whole thing.

CuttingSkinCurveSLICING THE SKIN WITH A UTILITY KNIFE
The wall skins are 1/4″ 4×8′ sheets of luan and I’m cutting some curves in each corner for that fancy aerodynamic trailer shape.  I’m cutting the luan with my utility knife, it takes a lot of passes but it makes tracing the curve really precise.

ShapeWALL SKIN
Here is the first wall skin cut from the 8×4′ 1/4″ laun. I am modeling my design after the Moby-XC which inspired the silhouette you see above.

Bottom RailFRAMING THE BASE
And more gluing in action. I’m using a 2×3″ board for the base  which is attached with glue and drywall screws.

Gorilla GlueGLUE AND SCREW
I’m counting on some glue and handfuls of screws to hold this thing together. I’m using what I have on hand as much as possible, a combination of deck screws, drywall screws, and Gorilla Glue.

DoorFRAMING THE WALL
More framing in progress.  I’m using 2×2″s (which are really 1 and 3/4″) for the uprights. I’ll fill in the voids with solid foam insulation (the same stuff people build hexayurts with) and spray in foam to fill the remaining gaps. Foam core is a great insulator and will provide a tiny bit of rigidity.

If you look closely in this picture above you can see the outline of a door. I chose to cut and construct my own door instead of buying a prefab one, we’ll see if I regret this choice when I get around to building the doors.