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Lightweight Expanding Trailer Plans
Build a Vintage Hardside Cable Lift Popup Camper

Cover of plans for building mobile vacation home.
Lightweight Expanding Trailer Plans
Build a Vintage Hardside Cable Lift Popup Camper
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Get a restored copy of these vintage Lightweight Expanding Travel Trailer Plans with 9 Pages of Enhanced and Enlarged Figures and Illustrations and Searchable Text.
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Mounted on a truck chassis, the removable rolling home can be taken right to your favorite vacation spot or bug out location.
A family desire to travel at minimum cost was realized by building this inexpensive trailer.

By Eugen C. Winslow

Figure 1. Mobile Vacation Home Interior Details and Dimensions.
Headroom exceeds six feet with top raised. Crank, lower right, was later moved to side.
The trailer is built on the rear end of a 1937 Ford. A rectangular frame, ten feet long and just wide enough to fit between the brake drums, is made of 3-in. channel iron and is fastened to the axle by means of U bolts.
The simple stud-wall, box-type construction of the the cabin is completed before tackling the cabinet work. Plywood is used for the walls, ceiling and flooring.
The bottom half of the trailer is constructed of 3/4-in, exterior plywood. The floor is attached to the channel frame with angle irons at eight points. The sides are 37 in. high and are mortised into the floor. The method used to join the corners of the bottom half is detailed as section A-A in the drawing on the preceding page.
Figure 2. Mobile Vacation Home Framing, Sheathing, and Roof to Wall Joint Details.
Three young members of the family
try out the bunks in the newly
completed trailer.
The top half slides up and down on six tracks which are made of aluminum trailer awning molding. These are fastened to each of the corners and to each side of the door. Metal rods (3/8-in. dia.) are fastened to the top and bottom of the movable top half by small angle irons. These rods slide up and down in the aluminum molding tracks and steady the top.
Figure 3. Mobile Bug Out Cabin Left and Right Side, Front and Back Wall, Floor and Roof Layout and Dimensions.
Expanding Trailer
Parts List
A six-foot steel rod (5/8-in. dia.) is fastened to the bottom of the floor near the middle. This is secured at six points with two mandrel bearings and four eye-bolts. Aircraft control cables are attached at four points on the rod and a crank is installed at one end. By a system of pulleys, the cables go through holes at the edge of the floor and are looped over the edge of the bottom half of the trailer and then attached to the bottom of the top half of the trailer. When the rod is turned by the crank, the cables pull the top up.
Notching the drawer slides at the front will keep them from sliding open when the truck is in motion.
Closeup shows cranking-up operations.

Interior view shows sink, closet and lower bunk before finishing. Note refrigerator under stove.
Diagram of pulley and cable system for raising and lowering trailer top.
The bunks also go up with the top. They are stabilized by 1-in. galvanized pipes 30 in. long which are screwed into the floor. The bunks, themselves, are attached to a 3-ft. length of metal conduit (1 1/4-in. dia.) which slides over the fastened pipes. The eight 30-in. base pipes are drilled for steel pins which lock the bunks in the raised position.
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This modern chassis makes an excellent base for your teardrop trailer project, lightweight camping trailer, or vintage travel trailer build.
Teardrop Chassis Plans
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