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Free Plans - Build The Jim Dandy
Cabin Cruiser Trailer
Vintage 1935 DIY Travel Trailer Plans
Complete Illustrated Plans and Instructions

Cover of free plans to build a vintage 1935 Jim Dandy Cabin Cruiser Trailer
Jim Dandy Cabin Cruiser Trailer Plans
Build this Vintage Jim Dandy Model C Travel Trailer
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While the "Cruiser" can be built in any length desired, here are the specifications of the 14 ft. model. Length of body outside, 14 ft. Width of body outside, 6 1/2 ft. Height of body outside, 6 ft. 4 1/2 in. Total height of trailer outside, approximately 7 1/2 ft. Length of body inside, 13 ft. 8 in. Width of body inside, 6 ft. 2 1/2 in. Height of body inside, 6 f t. 1 in. Wheel Tread, 64 in. Spring Spread, 48 in. Weight, when built with 1/8 in. Masonite body paneling and equipped as shown in Floor Plan "E" but without supplies, clothing, etc., approximately 2200 lbs.

JUST an ordinary kit of tools and a little skill in handling them are all you need to build the "Cruiser". There's not one operation in its entire construction that calls for a special tool excepting perhaps a band saw and you do not need this if you buy ready-cut parts. Outside of this a portable electric drill will be a timesaver. So, you need not hesitate to build the "Cruiser" because of the lack of special tools or extraordinary experience in carpentry- and if home craftsmanship is your hobby, a more enjoyable project cannot be undertaken. Many builders say that there's as much fun in building a trailer as there is in using it.

* The "Cruiser" was designed to meet the demand for a trailer coach with lines to match the modem car. It has gracefully rounded comers, a beautiful top, and a body set as close to the ground as a trailer should be built. Indeed, here is a coach that will compliment any car on the market - a trailer that will match it in trim and finish as well. You can park a "Cruiser" alongside of any manufactured or custom-built trailer in America and, considering its cost, your "Cruiser" will ger more than its share of admiration. And think of it - you can build it yourself - just as beautiful - just as perfect in every detail as the one you see here. If you follow these plans carefully and do a work-man-like job in the building, your "Cruiser" will look as fine as any factory-built trailer on the market! These plans show you how! Build a Jim Dandy and enjoy life!

About the Jim Dandy
Cabin Cruiser
* The Jim Dandy Cabin Cruiser is a conventional American design. It is a coach for comfortable living with accommodations conveniently arranged so that there is never a feeling of stuffiness that is so objectionable.

* The Jim Dandy Cabin Cruiser is as light as such a trailer can be built and built solidly. Any attempt to build lighter tends toward flimsiness. It has been proved by trailer users that weight is not nearly as important as weight distribution. A trailer 500 pounds lighter than the Jim Dandy cannot be more easily or economically transported.

* The weight of your Jim Dandy Cabin Cruiser will be in the neighborhood of 2200 pounds, depending upon your floor plan and equipment, and there should be about 200 to 300 pounds on the rear end of your car. Don't be alarmed at this weight for it will not spring the rear of your car any more than the weight of two people in the rear seat if you drive a sedan. This weight on your car will actually steady it and make it ride with surprising comfort. With the tread of 64 in. and the spring spread of 48 in. you get, with the Drop Axle recommended, there is no sway. I have hauled the "Cruiser" at speeds of 60 miles per hour on concrete and 45 miles on gravel roads, and we rolled along beautifully. These were tests, of course, as a man is foolish to "speed" with a trailer. The smooth, even riding qualities of the "Cruiser" are unequalled.

* One of the first questions to arise in your mind will be "What will the Jim Dandy cost to build?" Not an easy question to answer for it all depends upon the amount of work you do yourself. Outside of the Axle and the Hitch used on the Jim Dandy. practically every part can be made by the home worker with the exception of the materials themselves.

* If you buy a special axle or pick up one at the junk yard it will make a difference in the cost. If you buy the doors, windows, wheel housings, window arms, etc., or make them yourself it will make a great difference in the cost. If you hire the work done it will make a difference - and so on.

* One thing is certain, though the Jim Dandy Cruiser looks like a "factory-built" job it will cost you nowhere near the price of a manufactured trailer of equal quality no matter if you buy every part and have the trailer built by a mechanic.

* To get an estimate of the cost yourself, take the material list and enter the costs in the column provided.

* Any man who is handy with tools can build the Jim Dandy from these plans. If you lack the time, it is easy to find a carpenter who will give you a price on the job. Show him the plans and you may be surprised how reasonably he will do it. If you are building in the winter months, most any carpenter will be glad to have the job and you can be assured of a nicely finished trailer in the end. If you do have the time to do it yourself and your hobby is tools and a workshop, the fun of building it will be priceless.

* How's this for a winter project? Turn those wasted hours into dollars by building a trailer or two to sell. Chances are that you will have them sold before you get the roof on. Custom built trailers are and always will be in greatest demand because they permit the user to incorporate his own ideas in the car that is to be his traveling home.

* For commercial purposes the Jim Dandy is a "honey"- good looking, plenty of room and easy to transport. Changing or adding windows is a simple matter. Plenty of head room for displays, cabinets, tables, etc., to show or carry samples or stocks of merchandise. Every inch of the interior may be utilized. There is no surer way to increase sales than by the use of a mailer for showing samples.

* The photographer, the mechanic, the showman who travels about wishing to take his place of business with him will find the Jim Dandy ideally suited to his needs.

* Most important in the transportation of a trailer is the hitch. You want a reliable hitch, and it should be of the ball and socket type with every feature of safety built into it. A good hitch is worth all it costs. Of equal importance is the bracket on the car holding the ball. This should be as solidly and firmly attached as is possible for it stands to reason that the stability of this bracket lessens the chances of bounces and sways. Read the discussion of this important subject in the Trailer Builders Manual section of the Trailer Supply Company's catalog.

About These Plans

* You sent your money for these plans because you liked the looks of the "Cruiser". These plain, simple, easily understood plans show you how to build it with no chance of error if they are carefully followed.

* These plans were not prepared for the engineer or master mechanic, therefore the absence of technical language in their descriptions and the plainness of the diagrams. The instructions, drawings, etc., are in the language of the home worker. They are written for him and if he can understand them, the expert certainly can follow them. So, whether you intend to build a cabin trailer yourself or have a mechanic do it, the plans can easily be understood.

* Remember, it is not the number nor the size of the plan sheets nor is it the number of words that count. Practicability, simplicity and freedom from details that are confusing to the avenge home craftsman have distinguished Jim Dandy plans.

* But after all, what good is any plan if the finished job is undesirable? Jim Dandy's are built first, because they are good trailers, sensibly designed, and second because the plans tell clearly how to build them easily. It's the combination of quality in both trailer and plan that has won popularity for the Jim Dandy.

* I have tried to prepare these plans as accurately as possible but in spite of the most careful checking, errors are likely to creep in, but any man with a spark of mechanical ability will be able to catch them and correct them as he goes. If one does not possess that "spark" he should not attempt to build a trailer.

* For every thousand people interested in cabin trailers, there are a thousand ideas as to their design, arrangement, dimensions, and manner and method of construction. Therefore, the "Cruiser" can by no means appeal to everyone and is not intended to do so, but any one reading these plans cannot help but find suggestions which can be incorporated in a trailer of his own construction. Just one idea lifted from these plans will be worth their price.

* The primary purpose of these plans is to tell you how to build the chassis and shell or body of your trailer. The interior equipment and its construction is left mostly to you because, first, you perhaps have your own ideas regarding this part of the job (most everyone has) and, second, it would be quite impossible to set down every detail, measure. Measurements and method of building beds, cabinets, closets, etc., on paper. If you are enough of a mechanic to build the shell as directed, you'll not have the slightest difficulty in completing the interior with the suggestions and diagrams offered herein.

Original 14 Ft. Model of the "Cruiser"

This is a photograph of the original model of the "Cruiser" introduced in 1936. Hundreds of them have been built and are giving satisfactory service to their owners today. The "Cruiser" described in these plans is essentially the same with exception of a change in the wheel housing and in the construction of the chassis. This model was finished in steel gray enamel to match the power car. The top was finished with aluminum paint.

* The "Cruiser" can be built in any reasonable size, and the door can be located anywhere you wish. Start with the floor plan. Make a diagram of it (1/8 in. to 1 in. is a good proportionate scale to use), and change the chassis length accordingly. Locate your axle and studding logically. The rest is easy.

* No attempt is made to give dimensions in instructions. All dimensions are given in the drawings and these should be followed. To repeat them in the instructions is unnecessary

* All Trailer Supply Company's Catalog numbers of the various parts are given, both on the drawings and in the instructions. This greatly simplifies the ordering of parts and assures you of parts that fit and have been adapted to the construction of this trailer. If no part number is given, you have a choice of parts to use. Consult the Catalog and make selection accordingly.

Before You Begin

* Before you start to build this trailer, study the plans thoroughly. Refer to the drawings while reading these instructions. Make sure you understand every measurement and detail of construction before you begin to build.

* In the various diagrams of these drawings, you will notice lines drawn through certain parts with a number at the end, also circles around other parts with a number connected. These circles and lines indicate there is a larger detail drawing of this particular section. For example, in Diagram B of the chassis, you will notice a deck around the part where the tongue joins the cross member, marked 4. You will find among the detail drawings a larger illustration of that particular section marked "SEC. 4", showing construction details.

* After you have studied the instructions and feel that you are familiar with the construction as shown in the drawings, it is a good policy to check over the parts and materials required. Compare the parts and their numbers on the plans with the numbers in Trailer Supply Company's Catalog, so you will become more familiar with them. Check the Material List so that when you order you will be sure to get everything you will require. After you have the necessary parts and materials on hand, you will be ready to start building.

* Decide on the length of the trailer and make provisions to locate axle accordingly. While these plans are for the building of a 14-ft. trailer because investigation proves this to be one of the most popular lengths. It is a simple matter to build the job longer or shorter. Adapt the plans on paper to the length you want before you begin.

* While there can be no accurate formula for locating the axle, as so much depends on the interior arrangement of your trailer, an axle located 1/3 the length of the trailer from the rear end is as near right as can be determined in advance.

* Next, decide upon your beds, their kind and locations. Most trailer planning begins with the beds. Some extra headers in the frame are necessary for attaching certain types of beds, especially when they are also used for seats. Know in advance where these headers are to go. You may be a very tall man. Therefore, if you are planning beds that run from side to side of the body, you may have to build the body a little wider. This affects all width dimensions and tread of wheels. Make a new drawing before proceeding. Remember the body as planned herein is only 74 1/2 in. wide inside.

* Decide on your ventilators and lights - the kind to be used and where they are to be located.

* Decide whether to use nails or screws in the construction. Screws make the best job, of course, and enable you to easily remove a part if necessary. The right kind of nails make a good job, too, and save much time in building, but are difficult to remove.
* Where lumber is designated as 3.4 in. - this means lumber regularly dressed and may be 3/4 in. or 13/16 in. in thickness. Either will do.

* Though pine is specified, any light lumber, except the hardwood pieces called for in the chassis frame, will do for the floor and body frame. With the method of bracing used in this frame, about anything but cardboard will give you a good, rigid body.

* Studding and plates should be of what is called ballister stock, but, for economy, you can rip 2x4's in twoâ€â€but use those that have been dressed on all four sides to 1 5/8 in. thickness and see that they are straight and free from loose knots.

* Order your parts well in advance of your need. Have them on hand when you are ready for them. Waiting may be very aggravating, especially if you are planning to use your trailer at a certain time.

* Study these plans carefully before proceeding. Read the instructions, refer to the Diagrams, and Reference Notes as you go. After several readings you'll be able to picture the various steps in the construction of your trailer and by knowing exactly how to go about each step, you'll save yourself a lot of time.

To Save Time and Money
Buy all the Ready-Made
Parts you can for this Job

* There is hardly a part of this trailer that cannot be made by the builder himself with the exception of course of the lumber, nails, etc. Even the axle, springs, etc., can be obtained at the junk yard - yes. even the chassis frame can be built of wood if desired, making it unnecessary to spend a lot of money for parts. If you've got the time, you can shop around your town, pick up parts here and there that will do, and make those you cannot find. But, as the building of this trailer will undoubtedly be a spare time project, take a tip from those who've learned - buy all the readymade parts you can get. Don't think that a trailer can be built overnight and, if the job drags out and becomes tedious, all the fun of building is lost.

* The parts specified in these plans, and supplied by the Trailer Supply Company, are made for the job - designed to fit and, because they are produced in large quantities, the prices are low and you will save money in buying them. Another thing, buying all parts from this one source saves the extremely tiresome job of running around and looking for them.

* Early issues of these plans did not have these references as there was no established source of supply of parts at that time. Builders were left to dig up their own sources of supply or make the parts as best they could. Consequently, there was almost as great a demand on the part of builders for information on sources of supply for parts as there was for the plans themselves, as there are few indeed who have the time or inclination to make everything, realizing that readymade, ready-cut parts contributed so much to economy and a good job.

* Get the Trailer Supply Company's Trailer Builders' Manual and Catalog. It costs you 25 cents and contains enough valuable information on trailer building to make it worth many times the price. You pay only for the information therein - and the Catalog is part of the book which is sold with a money-back guarantee. If you haven't a copy of this Manual and Catalog, send for one today - read it thoroughly before you begin your trailer.

Perspective View of "Cruiser" Interior
If you were to build a 14 ft. "Cruiser" according to Floor Plan "E" and lift the top off a, this is what you would see looking at it from an angle above the lower right-hand corner. Here is a cozy arrangement for a trailer for two people that incorporates the Pullman sleeping car idea. The table is removed and the seats and back cushions form the bed. Note the closet and storage space. This is the arraignment used in the original model of the "Cruiser" and was universally admired.
 We recommend that you use a standard house trailer axle with 2000 lb. capacity selected from the Trailer Supply Company's catalog. You may have your choice of axle equipment, with or without brakes, springs, wheels, etc. Have your axle on hand before you begin. Cut steel channel main sills, angle steel cross members and tongue angles to dimensions given and shape channel ends as shown in Diagrams "B" and "B.1" and Section "1". This can be done with a hack saw.

 Lay the main sills parallel on the floor so that the centers will be 48 in. apart. Shape the ends of the 2 x 2 x 1/4 in. angle steel front cross member to fit the main sill as shown in Diagram "B". When doing this, be sure to maintain the 48 in. centers of main sills. Secure to main sills temporarily with clamps. Next place the 55 in. 1 1/2 x 1 1/2 x 1/4 in. angle steel cross member at the rear end of channel steel main sills as shown in Diagram "B" and Section "1", and secure temporarily with clamps. Square up and rivet permanently using 3/8 in. iron rivets.

 Cut the four 1 1/2 x 1 1/2 x 1/4 in. angle steel cross members to the proper length cutting of the ends of the lower flanges at a 45-degree angle. Locate and rivet them to main sill channels with 3/8 in. rivets.

 Secure angle steel tongue pieces to No. 796 Hitch with 3/8 in. machine bolts. Place tongue underneath the chassis frame so that it will measure 15 ft. 4 in. from the center of the hitch ball to the rear of the chassis. Shape and fit the ends of the tongue angles to the second cross member as shown in Diagram "B" and Section "4". When this is properly centered, rivet tongue to front cross member with 3/8 in. rivets. Place a 1/4 in. metal plate or shim between tongue angles and channel main sills, and secure with 3/8 in. rivets.

 Mount the axle, spring and wheel assembly according to dimensions given in Diagram "B-1", making sure that you have the axle placed so that wheels will be parallel with main sills and to the hitch will be centered with axle. Your trailer chassis must be square if you expect it to track perfectly. See that wheels turn perfectly true on spindles. Then, with a straight edged 2 x 4, see that wheels are parallel with sills. Secure spring brackets to main sills with 1/2 in. rivets or bolts. Remove the wheels, and set chassis solidly on blocks at a convenient height, making sure that it is level from side to side as well as from end to end.

Building Instructions When No. 105 Special Chassis
Is Used with Dandy Plans
Before starting to build, read the regular plan building instructions for the chassis carefully. This will help you a lot, since the general procedure is the same when building with the No. 105 Special Chassis. Use 1 1/2 x 1 1/2 x 1/4 in. angle steel for the cross members. Locate them as shown in Diagram "B", and secure to the bottom side of the 2 in. square steel tubing main sills, using 1/8 in. machine bolts. Use a lock washer under nut, or better bolt to hold securely. When outside wood sills are in place, they should be fitted up to the tongue and continued through between the angle of the tongue to form body peak according to Diagram "B". Secure to tongue by bolting a flat piece of 1/4 in band iron to the bottom of the sills and tongue. Place a piece of 1 1/2 x 1 1/2 x 1/4 in. angle steel 55 in. long under the rear end of the main sills so that it will be flush with the ends, and secure with 1/8 in. machine bolts. Fit 1 5/8 x 2 in. wood sill on top of angle steel cross member between main sills end corner curves, and bolt securely with 1/4 in. carriage bolts. All outside sills must be 1 5/8 in. wide by 2 in. high so that the top will be flush with the top of main sills. Place a wood sill in the center extending the full length from the rear sill to the point of the front sills, and a piece of 1 5/8 x 2 in. wood on the inside next to each square steel main sill. Secure all sills to cross members with 1/4 in. carriage bolts.

 Fill the main sill channels with No. 184 Hardwood Sills, bolted to channel sills with 3/8 in. carriage bolts as shown in Section "2". Wood should be tightly fitted to steel, and bolt heads countersunk flush with top of sill. Use lock washers under nuts, or nuts can be drawn rightly and bolt battered for security if desired. Always give wood and iron a coat of No. 740 Valdura Asphalt Aluminum Paint, and assemble while paint is wet. Then fit in center sill, and secure to all angle steel cross members with 1/4 in. carriage bolts, countersinking the heads flush with the top. This plan shows the center sill to be 1-13/16 x 3 5/8 in. This is used to make the top flush with the top of the main sills, but an ordinary 2 x 4 may be substituted by placing a thin shim between it and the cross members so that the top will be flush with main sills. Secure the end of the center sill to rear angle cross member with No. 270 Corner Braces, riveted and bolted. Front end is bolted to front angle cross member.

 Shape a piece of wood 52 in. long and fit into rear angle steel cross member, as shown in Section "1", and secure with 1/4 in. carriage bolts. Cut all of the 1 5/8 x 1 13/16 in. outside sills. Place them as shown, and secure to angle steel cross members with 1/4 in. carriage bolts. When doing this, be sure to maintain the 78 in. overall width. Cut the two front sills of the peak and reinforce them with 1 1/2 x 1 1/2 x 1/4 in. angle steel, using 1/4 In. carriage bolts. Use a hardwood or metal shim between the front sill and tongue angles, and bolt with 3/8 in. carriage bolts.

 Next fit in the No. 193 Front Body Curves (see Diagram "P" for pattern), placing them between the side and front sills, and securing to side sills with 1 1/2 x 1 1/2 x 1/4 in. angle steel, as shown in Diagram "B". Fit the No. 196 Rear Body Curve as shown in Diagram "B", and secure with 1/4 in. carriage bolts.

 Secure the supports for the wheel housings on both sides as shown with No. 270 Corner Braces. Not much strength is required here, as the flooring, when applied, will give your frame the necessary strength.

 Wheel Housings - Set the No 180 Wheel Housings in position, and attach with No. 335 Washer Head Siding Screws spaced about 2 in. apart. It is important that the housings be placed so that the outsides will be at right angles with the top of chassis. See Diagram "O" for dimensions.

 Flooring - Ordinary 1 x 4 or 1 x 6 in. fir or pine tongue and groove flooring makes a good trailer floor. This may be nailed or screwed as desired. If fastened with screws, use 1 3/4 in. No. 12 flat head wood screws. Flooring should be laid from outside to outside of the side sills. Some builders give the tongue and groove, as well as the top of the sills, a coat of No. 741 Valdura Primer Underwater when laying the flooring. When floor is laid, give the wood and steel work beneath the floor one or two coats of No. 740 Valdura Asphalt Aluminum Paint. To make a dustproof job, pack heavy felt or okum between edge of floor and wheel housings.

 Wheel Housing Frames - No. 185 Frames are placed at the outer edge of the floor over wheel housing, and are secured to floor with No. 270 Comer Braces, as shown in Diagram "D". Use No. 335 Washer Head Siding Screws spaced about 2 in. apart to secure housing to frame.

FRAME - Diagram "D"

 Upon the height of your studding depends the inside height of your trailer. Diagram "D" calls for studding 57 1/4 in. long. This will give you an inside height of approximately 73 in. (deduct 1/4 in. for floor covering and top lining if you plan to use these). You may be a tall man and require another inch or two head room, or you may he short and require less. Add or deduct difference from studding lengths.

 Cut the studding of 1 5/8 x 1 5/8 in. pine or other light wood. Mark the locations on the trailer floor. If you use No. 201 Gusset Type Body Braces, which are strongly recommended, put these braces on all studding, top and bottom. Studding should be rabbeted for the braces so that screw heads and the face of brace will be flush with the side of studding. Put the studding in position, and mortise the floor and sill to accommodate projection on brace to keep it flush. After studding are attached to floor, lay the upper plate pieces in position, and attach braces. The corner curves of upper plate should overlap end of studding half way. Square up the entire frame. Use several temporary braces extending from the upper plate down at an angle to the floor so as to keep your frame rigid and square.

 Put in 1 5/8 x 1 5/8 in. headers, and fasten to studding with No. 270 Corner Braces. Body Curves No. 197, placed between floor and upper plate, should be trimmed to fit. Fasten these curves to studding with No. 273 Coorer Braces.

TOP - Diagram "C"

 When the top ribs are ready, decide whether or not you are going to line the inside of the top. If you do intend to line it, then it is possible to assemble the top home with nails, although the corner brace method shown in Section "5" is recommended for best construction. If you do not intend to line the inside, then No. 281 Corner Braces are recommended. Remember, a good top on your trailer is worth all the money you put into it, and a few dollars extra are well spent.

 It is possible to assemble the top frame, with the exception of the corners and peak, on the floor, and then, with the help of a neighbor, lift the entire unit into position. When the entire top frame is completed, and securely in place, do nothing further with the top until you have applied the siding to the body. Now you can test the frame for rigidity - see how solid it is. You may move the entire unit, but your frame will never give. The top and studding bracing method recommended will give you a frame that will never vibrate and that is the secret of good construction. The importance of good ventilation cannot be stressed too strongly, and you should put in the headers now for two Ventilators.


 Now choose the siding for the body of your trailer. While Masonite Presdwood is very popular, several new materials have been introduced that are excellent. Ordinary 1/8 in. plywood may be used, but should be covered with No. 415 Duraleather. When using ordinary plywood, be sure to give the back a coat of No. 740 Valdura Asphalt Aluminum Paint to close up the pores in the wood to prevent condensation from loosening up the glue and to help insulate your trailer. Super Harbord Plywood may be used without the covering of Duraleather, as it is absolutely waterproof and will stand the weather. If you use Masonite Presdwood, lay the panels face to face on the floor and sprinkle backs lightly with water about 24 hours before you are ready to apply it. This causes the material expand, and it dries tight as a drum after it is applied. Masonite 1/8 in. thick is heavy enough.

 Apply the siding on the corners first. You will have no difficulty in bending sidings recommended around the curves. Nail one edge, bend slowly and carefully, nailing as you go. After siding is on corner curves, apply lower panels on the sides. Siding should be flush with the bottom of sills, flush with the top of headers of window openings and flush to door opening. Mark carefully the opening of the wheel housing and cut out the arch as indicated by dotted lines in Diagram "D". Do a neat job in cutting here. If your wheel housings are in place as they should be, trace the curve of the arch before cutting siding. When panel is properly cut, put in position and hold it in place with a nail here and there on the edge. Mark centers of each studding and attach panel to studding with No. 335 Washer Head Siding Screws set about 5 in. apart. Work from center to edges both ways. Edges should now be nailed with No. 288 Body Nails. Set nails about 2 to 3 in. apart, and close to edges so that heads will be covered by Body Finish Molding to be applied later. Begin your nailing in the center and work to the ends both ways.

 You'll want a nice finish on the peak of the body and a piece of No. 388 Chrome Bead should be used. This bead should be attached to studding first and side panels slipped into it. See Section "6" of Diagram "C". Bead is nailed on with No. 288 Nails, and should extend an inch or so above the upper plate to allow for trimming flush with drip molding to be applied later. A few body nails should be used in the panels beside the bead.

 After the lower side panels are on all around, put on the upper panels, using No. 209 Weatherproof Strip, between the edges of the upper and lower panels (see Trailer Supply Company's Catalog), and allowing the panels to come within 1/2 in. of the top of the upper plate. Upper panels should fit flush to the window and door openings, and should be applied, nailed and screwed in the same way you did the lower panels. Get screws evenly spaced and in a nice straight line for best appearance.

 Many builders are interested in a body covered with artificial leather, such as No. 415 Duraleather. A base of some kind beneath this material is necessary. Ordinary 1/8 in. 3-ply fir plywood is best for this purpose, as we have stated before, and may be obtained from Trailer Supply Co. The plywood should be nailed securely to studding, headers and sills with No. 288 Body Nails. The entire surface should then be covered with No. 410 Jute Felt, which acts as an insulator and a cushion. Cement the Jute Felt to the plywood sheeting with No. 419 Ferdico Cement, according to instructions furnished with the cement. Attach the Duraleather with No. 339 Tacks spaced about 2 in. apart, beginning inside the door frame and working toward the peak of the trailer.

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Jim Dandy Cabin Cruiser Trailer Plans Sheet C-3
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 Allow the material to extend about 3/4 in. above the window openings. Continue around the entire lower panel of the trailer. Fit the material snuggly, tacking as you go. Tack the lower edge underneath the outside sills, protecting the corner with a light weight metal angle which may be obtained at your local tinsmith. Cover the upper panel in the same manner, allowing the material to lap over the edge of the bottom piece so that lower edge will come about 1/2 in. from the top of the header below the window. Cover all joints and edges with No. 215 Wood Molding. For wheel housing use 216 Metal Molding which may be bent edgeways. Cut out window openings, allowing a 3/4 in. flap to be turned into the openings and tacked in place.


 After the siding is on, apply the top decking, which is 1/8 in. 3-ply fit plywood, to the top ribs with No. 288 Body Nails spaced about 2 in. apart. Brace the rafters and ribs on which you are nailing with a stiff board between rafter and floor. In applying the decking to curved ribs, begin at the bottom and work up, nailing as you go. Get tight, smooth joints. The compound curves of the top corners are formed with narrow strips of plywood the same as used on decking, and should be done after decking is otherwise completed. See Diagram "F". Tack these strips from rib to rib, getting close, tight joints. After strips are applied, smooth the edges with a rasp, and note what a nice, graceful corner you now have. When decking is on, cur out ventilator holes following out-line of header.

 Give the entire top a coat of No. 741 Valdura Primer Undercoater, allowing it to dry thoroughly.

 Canvas Top Covering - Canvas should be obtained in one piece, and should never be cut when it is laid on the top. No. 412 Cotton Duck is best suited for this trailer. Place the canvas over the top evenly all around, and tack one side temporarily. Tack into the siding about 1/2 in. below the joint of the siding and roof decking. Get tacks in a straight line so that drip molding to be applied later will cover them. Now rack one side permanently - keeping well away from the corners. Then, after a thorough stretching, tack the other side, saving the corners and peak until last. Bear in mind that it is possible to stretch this canvas over the corners and peak without folding or cutting and get our every wrinkle, and if you want the most beautiful top job, it will pay you to do it. After the canvas is laid, trim close to tacks so that drip molding will cover both tack heads and edge. Give canvas a couple coats of No. 791 Valdura Primer Undercoater or Ferdico Waterproof Cement and one or two coats of No. 740 Valdura Asphalt Aluminum Paint. A light sanding between coats makes a smoother better looking top.

 After the paint is dry, take a sharp knife and cut out the ventilator openings in the canvas, following the outlines of the holes in the header or decking.

WINDOWS AND SCREENS - (See Reference Below)

 This trailer requires three windows 17 1/2 x 30 1/2 in. and two 17 1/2 x 24 1/2 in. with screens. Choose the windows you wish to use from the Trailer Supply Catalog. The two small windows are to be placed in the front, one large one on each side and one in the rear, as shown in Diagram “D". Should you wish to make your own windows and screens with wood frames, refer to Trailer Supply Catalog for all materials and fittings.

DOOR - Diagram "D"

 The door is easily made, provided it is well braced. Diagram "D" gives you a general idea of the frame construction. We recommend that you install a stationary glass window, and use a full-length screen door. Make the ventilator opening in the bottom of the door to fit a Trailer Supply door ventilator set. Either of the two larger sizes shown in catalog is recommended. The door frame should be made of 1 1/8 x 1 5/8 in. wood, fitted at the corners as shown, and reinforced with L and T plates or No. 284 Micklin Corner Braces. Line the inside with 1/8 in. plywood, and cover the outside with whatever siding you are using on your trailer. It is well to cover the entire edge with No.212 T Molding. Use a Continuous Hinge, or a set of the No. 3113 Door Hinges, on the side nearest the peak of the trailer. See Trailer Supply Catalog for selection of door lock sets and screen door hardware. Be sure to allow plenty of clearance between door and frame all around so that it will operate freely. In sizing the door, allow for floor covering and No. 211 Threshold Molding. This molding is applied after the floor is covered so that the edge of the floor covering, which will come to the outside edge of the door frame, will be covered. Make allowance in the length of your door for the thickness of these items. Set the door in place and mark hinge position. Mortise the hinge into the frame, and fasten with heavy screws.

 No. 265 Molding is ideal for making the screen door frame, with the comers reinforced by No. 284 Micklin Comer Braces. It may be attached to No. 204 Continuous Hinge, or No. 681 Spring Hinges may be used. When the screen door is hung it is important to maintain the 1 5/8 in. space between the outside door and the screen, as this space is required to accommodate the inside handle of the door lock.


 Apply the drip molding first. See that it covers the edge of the top canvas and the tack heads. If you used Masonite Presdwood or Super Plywood for your trailer siding, apply the No. 215 and 216 Body Finish Molding, using oval head screws or No. 286 Molding Nails, as you wish. Diagram "A" of the completed trailer shows where these moldings are placed. It is, of course, important that all joints, be covered. It will be necessary also to use the metal molding around the edges of the wheel arches. It is a good plan to reinforce the inside of this arch with 3/4 x 1/4 in. band iron. Shape at the same time you shape your molding on the outside. After you have them both shaped so they are alike, clamp them together and drill holes through both pieces for small oval head stove bolts. Put a molding around the edge of the door window. 

Window Openings given here will accommodate windows size 17 1/2 x 24 1/2 in. and 17 1/2 x30 1/2 in.  If you use any other sizes or styles of windows, you must size your openings accordingly to accommodate them before the siding is put on. It is best to order your windows in time to have them on hand when you are ready to size the openings in order to make certain of a perfect fit.

WIRING - Diagram "H"

 All electric wiring should be done now. If you are going to use 6-volt circuit, you must use No. 8 wire (Catalog No. 473) or larger to the interior lights, and No. 474 Twin Armored Wire for the stop and tail lights and running lights. Wiring Diagram "H" shows you the circuits. Lights may be located anywhere you wish. The diagram simply gives you the principle. All connections should be soldered and thoroughly insulated. Care should be taken to locate leads so that you will not drive nails through them in applying the inside lining, thus causing a short circuit. Consult Trailer Supply Catalog for latest lighting systems and equipment.

 Many builders who do not feel that their knowledge of electricity and wiring circuits is sufficient to enable them to do the wiring themselves, have an electrician do it or call in a friend who does understand the business to help them out.

 Remember, too, that your stop and tail light and running lights are of utmost importance. Don't run afoul of the law by not having them. Then there is your own safety to be considered.


 It is always well to insulate a trailer whether it is to be used in summer only or in summer and winter. During the hot summer months, insulation helps to keep out the sun's heat; then, in the winter when it is cold, it prevents the heat from escaping through the walls. It also prevents condensation in cold weather. The reflecting type of insulation is highly recommended for trailers because of its lightness and ease of installation. There are many types of insulation that would be too bulky and heavy, expensive and hard to install in your trailer. If a thin type of insulation is used, install it so that you will have an air space on both sides. In other words, it should be fitted so that it will be about half way between the inside and outside wall coverings. The secret of good insulation is dead air spaces. This means that the air must not circulate in the walls. See Trailer Supply Catalog for various types of insulation. After you have the entire trailer insulated, you will be ready to put on the interior lining.

INTERIOR FINISH - Diagrams "I", "J", "K", "L", "N" and Floor Plans "C", "D" and "E"

 No attempt will be made to tell you how to arrange the interior of your trailer because everyone has his own ideas in this respect, but a few suggestions on how to proceed are given.

 If your beds are to be attached to the walls of the trailer in any way, now is the time to put in any headers or backing necessary for holding screws, nails or hooks. This also applies to closets, tables, cabinets or shelves, which you should have well planned by this time. All outside running lights, stop and tail lights, connectors, etc., should be attached. wired and tested. Remember, after your inside lining is on, it is rather difficult to get at these wires and fixtures.

 Before applying the inside top lining, decide if you are going to install a radio in your trailer and where it is to be located. Now is the time to put in the aerial. A piece of copper screen 36 in. wide laid between the top ribs and the inside top lining will give you a fine aerial. Solder the lead wire to the screen, and bring the wire between the ribs and studding to where you intend eventually to locate your radio cabinet. If you use an outside aerial, now is the time to bring in the lead.

 It is best to line the trailer completely before building closets, cabinets, etc. Choose the kind of paneling that suits you best. One-eighth inch Masonite Presdwood or 1/8 in. 3-ply plywood is recommended because it may be obtained in large sheets. The 1/8 in. plywood is the lightest material that is practical to use. Try to keep the grain in the plywood panels running one way. Apply with No. 288 Body Nails spaced about 2 1/2 in. apart and close to edge so that nails may be covered with moldings later. Be sure to mark centers of headers, studding and ribs lightly on panels so that you may strike them easily when building cabinets, etc. Begin your paneling on the top, fitting the center panel first. Use long pieces on each side, extending from the breaking point of the rear corner curve to the front curve. Make sure they are wide enough so that when pressed up tightly to the ribs they will extend down to the center of the upper plate. Press the pieces into position, placing the upper edge against the center panel and, using a board that is long enough to extend from the lower edge of the panel to the floor at an angle, press the center of the panel up against the ribs. At the same time, work the lower edge of the board toward the wall with your foot to as to hold the panel in place until you have it tightly pressed against all of the ribs. When panel is in place, nail the lower edge to plate. After you have the entire lower edge secured, nail the upper edge. It will not be necessary to nail to any of the ribs other than those at the ends of the panels. Fit in the rear and front comers and point panels in the same manner. Fitting the panels to the inside of the corners and peak ribs requires some careful work to insure a nice job. Don't cut your panel until you have fitted a cardboard pattern first. Then mark and out the panel, and a perfect joint is assured.

 After the ceiling is lined, begin paneling at the bottom and work up to the first header. Before working higher, fit panels and then bore necessary holes for side light fixtures, wires, switches, etc. It may be necessary to mount and wire certain types of light fixtures before panel is secured, and it is safer to apply such panels with screws rather than nails as you may want to remove one to get at a bit of wiring.

 It is the practice of many builders to lay the floor covering at this stage before going ahead with beds, cabinets, etc. This enables you to cover the floor completely and easily for the job of cutting and fitting floor coverings after beds and cabinets are in is a tough one if you are particular about good appearance. While linoleum is a popular covering, 1/10 in. Tempered Masonite Presdwood is also widely used. Whatever type of covering you may use; it is well to cement a piece of heavy deadening felt between floor and covering. If Presdwood is used, place a piece 4 ft. wide through the center, then a piece on each side to the wall, using care in fitting the material around the wheel housings. Let the material come to the outside edge of the door opening, and, after the covering is laid, put on the No. 211 Threshold Molding. Lay some heavy paper or corrugated board over the floor to prevent scratching the surface while you are working inside, and, after the trailer interior is completed, give covering one or two coats of floor varnish or wax.

 Now set water tank into position in the rear and hold in place with cleats to floor. Filler pipe goes through rear wall of trailer - outlet through the floor. Attach all fittings. Later, when you build in cabinets, etc., you can fasten a board over top of tank and have a very roomy locker or storage space.

 Install the seats and beds now. Have your cushions on hand. Build the base for the seats at a height most comfortable for you. After the beds are in, divide the remainder of the room as you prefer. The cabinets shown in the Floor Plans merely suggest an arrangement which may be altered to meet your requirements.

 The work table or cabinet top in Diagram "N" may be built to the height most suitable to the person who is to do the cooking. The top of this cabinet is at least 16 in. wide. A piece of 3/8 in. plywood makes a nice top. Be sure to cut opening for sink and bore hole for the pump before securing. Opening should be exact size of inside dimension of sink, which is held in place by cleats under the top flange of sink on all four sides. Cement the sink flanges to the top with No. 578 So-Lo Plastic Rubber, making a gasket to keep our water.

 Frames for cabinets, drawers and closets are made of 3/4 x 1 5/8 in. lumber. Reinforce the inside of the large doors with 3/4 x 1 5/8 in. lumber and assemble with No. 338 Corrugated Fasteners or Shores Fasteners or strengthen each comer with a No. 284 Micklin Corner Brace. Fasten the frame to 4 in. plywood panel with No. 286 Molding Nails or Oval Head Nickel Plated Screws. If Masonite Presdwood is used for the face of drawers and doors, trim the edges with moldings or, if you want a deluxe job, use No. 385 Chrome Edging Bead. No. 268 Molding may also be used for the doors as it is ideal when paneled doors are desired. See Trailer Supply Catalog for construction details.

 Drawers are simply well constructed boxes. Let the front side contain a panel of plywood or Masonite as is used on the doors to make them match. Trim the edges with moldings or the chrome bead. Be sure to put a No. 677 Friction Catch on each drawer to prevent it from sliding out while travelling.

 Adopt one style of hardware for all of your trailer - get the hinges, catches and pulls to match. This is easily accomplished by making your selection from the Trailer Supply Catalog.

 An efficient refrigerator is easily built and is a very important part of your trailer. You want one that will hold ice as long as possible, and one that will hold a low temperature and preserve food. Therefore, the insulation is the most important part of the refrigerator. Use Sealdslab, which is easily cut and fitted around a No. 524 Refrigerator Shell, as shown in Diagram "K." It has a higher insulating of than cork - which was always accepted as the best insulator until Sealdslab was made. Build your opening for the refrigerator just the same as any other cabinet. Nail the metal to the frame all around the opening. Attach Sealdslab panels to the inside of the doors. Have galvanized iron covering made for door insulation and see that edges are slightly tapered for perfect action in opening and closing. Use No. 670 Refrigerator Hardware Set for your doors. If you have been careful with your measurements and fitting, you will have a refrigerator that is hard to beat. See Trailer Supply Catalog for readymade refrigerators.

 With the completion of the cabinets, closets, etc., your next step is to cover each joint of the paneling or inside lining of the trailer with No. 215 Wood Molding. This molding may be secured with Oval Head Screws or No. 286 Molding Nails. Put the screens in place. They should be secured to the window opening with small round head screws. Then all fixtures such as lights, ventilators, closet fixtures, etc., should be installed. Set the cook stove in place and fasten it securely. Don't overlook a canopy over the stove to carry off cooking odors. This is most essential if you want a pleasant atmosphere in your trailer. No. 434 Canopy is ideal for this purpose.

 Pump - Install pump and connect it to water tank using galvanized or copper pipe running from tank to pump beneath the floor of the trailer. See that this pipe is securely fastened with pipe cleats to prevent rattles. Connect sink drain pipe to trap, and your trailer is now ready for painting.

 Painting - Before painting, fill all nail holes and cracks with No. 577 Can-O-Wood. The finish of the interior is a matter of taste. If you use paint, two coats of No. 741 Primer Undercoater should precede the finishing coats of high-grade enamel. You may want to stain and varnish your paneling, or maintain a natural wood finish. This makes an attractive interior. However, the ceiling is invariably finished in a light color for obvious reasons, and any color scheme for the walls and woodwork is planned to harmonize with the ceiling.


 Select a color for the outside of your trailer that will harmonize with your car. It is often possible to get a color to match it, if you desire. Two harmonious colors used together make a nice job. Use darker color up to the header molding and a lighter color from there to the top. This applies to both Duraleather and painted exteriors.

 If plywood or Masonite Presdwood is used, somewhere along the line take time out to give the outside at least two coats of No. 741 Valdura Primer Undercoater. Allow each coat to dry thoroughly, and sandpaper smooth before applying the next. Use a good enamel for the finish.

 All metal parts, such as wheel housings, ventilators, drip moldings, etc., should be aluminum finish.

 At this stage of the job, you are undoubtedly itching to hook your trailer on and go. Just one thing more - hang your shades or venetian blinds, selected from Trailer Supply Catalog. These are of good quality and inexpensive equipment and are made in sizes to fit the windows you have installed. You will find many other desirable items of equipment in this Catalog.

 Door Step - Any trailer 14 to 16 inches off the ground requires a step of some kind for the door. A handy folding step, such as shown in Trailer Supply Catalog, that is attached permanently to the trailer and is collapsible, is most satisfactory. Put one on your trailer - you will need it.

Hang a fire extinguisher near the door - so you can grab it on your way out in case of fire. Put on your bumper (Catalog No. 179) - load in your groceries and go - and here's luck to you - your fun has just begun!

Jim Dandy Cabin Cruiser Trailer Model C Plans List of Materials
 These are the parts and materials required for building the chassis and body shell only of a 14 ft. Cruiser. Because of the varied ideas among trailer builders on the interior arrangement, finish and equipment, no attempt is made to provide a material list for the interior of the trailer. Necessary paints are not included for the same reason. All Trailer Supply Catalog Numbers are given, but prices are omitted because of the possibility of change. It is a simple matter to take the Catalog and enter the prevailing prices of the parts in the column provided. While every effort has been made to compile this list accurately, it is not guaranteed correct.

+ Items 1, 2, 3, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9 and 10 are not required when using Special Chassis, and are replaced by the following parts:

1 No. 105 Special Chassis for 14 ft. trailer1 doz. 3/013 in. Machine Bolts

*Item 3 - 2 pcs. 12 ft. 9 in. long.

Item 4 - 4 pcs. 78 in. long; 1 pc. 55 in. long; 1 pc. 72 in. long.

Item 5 - 1 pc. 55 in. long; 2 pcs. 66 in. long.

Item 14 - Lineal feet. Buy 10 ft. lengths.

Item 15— Board feet. 14 ft. lengths.

Item 63 - If Masonite Presdwood, 3 pcs. 4 x 10 ft; 2 pcs. 4 x 8 ft; 1 pc. 4 x 12 ft.

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