Teardrop Trailer – Parts and Cost


This list is very much a work in progress.  I’ve provided cost and links when available and I’ll add updates as I go.


Ironton Heavy-Duty Trailer Kit 5Ft. x 8Ft. $499.99
This is probably the most expensive component of the build. I chose this over the cheaper 4×8 option which I decided was too narrow to allow two people to sleep comfortably.


I got my lumber at Discount Builders in San Francisco. I used Task Rabbit to organize a ride, I don’t have a truck and didn’t want to bother a friend for theirs.

(7) 4×8′ 1/4″ Sheets of Luan
For skinning the walls and the roof. The laun in pretty thin and flexible which will be important when I’m skinning the curved roof. I’ll cover it with spar varnish, primer, and paint which I hope will provide enough protection. Luan is not terribly robust on it’s own.

(2) 4×8′ 1/2″ CDX Ply
For the floor I went with something a bit thicker and on the cheaper side. I will seal this up with spar varnish, primer, and probably a coat of tar on the bottom that will be exposed to the street.

(10) 2×2″s Furring
For framing. These are actually 1.5 x 1.5″ and the wall skins are 1/4″, I’ll end up with 2 inch thick walls.

(8) 2×3″s Furring
And more framing. I’m using the slightly bigger stuff for the bottom of the frame to provide a bit more rigidity.


Grip-Rite 3-Inch 8 Coarse Thread Exterior Screw $8.57
I went with an exterior screw in case they get exposed to any water. The big ones are nice for framing but are too long for attaching the wall skin, the walls are only 2″ thick.

Grip-Rite 1-5/8-Inch 6 Coarse Thread Exterior Screw $8.47
And some shorter screws.

36oz Original Gorilla Glue $29.25
Waterproof, strong,  and a bit messy. It foams while drying but it’s easy to clean up if you catch it before it dries. I used this to glue the wood in the framing.

3M 8511 Particulate N95 Respirator with Valve, 10-Pack $16.99
If you’re sanding, particularly stuff with paint and varnish, you’ll need a mask. These work and are comfortable enough.

Foam Brushes, 24-Piece $7.58
I use this for applying sealers and stains. They are super handy but tend to wear out fast.


Solid Foam Insulation: R-Tech Insulfoam
I found this stuff at a local big box hardware store. I cut it with a utility knife which worked okay but was messy.  Later I discovered that a hacksaw blade cuts it a bit smoother and creates less mess.

Great Stuff Insulating Foam Sealant $5.20
This stuff is messy but works well. Wear gloves. I used this to fill the  gaps I had between the solid foam insulation and the frame.

2.36-Inch by 72.1-Yard Sheathing Tape  $16.95
I used this to seal the insulation in the frame and to cover seams. It’s all part of the effort to keep water out.


Goldblatt 3-Pack Plastic Putty Knife Variety Set $4.24
For smearing about wood filler. I didn’t use the big one much.

Wooster Brush Yachtsman Paintbrush, 3-Inch (5) $10.96ea
Get at least a decent paintbrush, the cheap ones tend to leave behind bristles which really can be a PITA.

3M Sanding Sponge, Extra Fine, 3.75-Inch by 2.625-Inch by 1-Inch, 3-Pack $9.87
 You could just use sandpaper but I found these helpful and a little easier on the hands.

10 Pack Of 3M 9-Inch by 11-Inch Aluminum Oxide Sandpaper, Assorted  $33.88
Super handy, I cut these into quarters and use them with my power sander.

32-Ounce Low Voc Mineral Spirits $13.41
I used this to thin down the spar varnish which is thick and can be hard to apply.

Rust-Oleum Marine Spar Varnish 1-Quart $21.52
I sealed the outside of the trailer with a few thinned out layers of this and then covered that with the marine primer and marine topside paint.

Rust-Oleum Marine Wood and Fiberglass Primer 1-Quart (2) $18.97ea
This stuff is a bit thick, it took some sanding to get a smooth surface.

Rust-Oleum Marine Topside Paint, White, 1-Quart (2) $11.97ea
The paint was pretty easy to work with, after the primer it seemed downright watery. It goes on okay, self-levels pretty well, and after a bit of sanding gave me a decent surface.


Hatch Hinges (4)
These are great, I used two per door and they worked out very well. Strong and nice to look at.


(I’ll provide more links and prices shortly.)

Wood Putty
Polyurethane Spray
Sanding Sealer
Razor Blades

Windows for Doors, Sliders (2)
Window Front, Sliders (1)
Hurricane Hinge for Rear Hatch