It started as a simple search on Craigslist for a kayak and ended up as a minor obsession. Four years after seeing that first teardrop trailer (in the background of the picture of the kayak on Craigslist) I still don't own a kayak, but I am the proud owner of my own teardrop trailer.
Maybe my first introduction to these little trailers wouldn't have been so fascinating to me had my wife and I not spent three long months living out of the back of our pickup truck and sleeping in a tent during a cross country road trip in 2000. With that experience - at times comfortable, but often damp, dirty, cramped, hot, or some combination of these- I was on the lookout for a solution to some of that discomfort for future road trips. For the record, I would never even entertain owning a "modern" RV, trailer, tent trailer, or toyhauler- they're too big, too ugly and generally intrude on the whole concept of staying small and mobile to get off the beaten path while on a road trip. We even looked at Volkswagon Vanagons, a conversion van, and even a minivan or two, but like most things, they did most everthing, but did nothing very well. To get what we wanted, we knew that you had to be able to seperate the vehicle from the living quarters, so that each could do its respective thing and then go back to their corner when the bell rang.
Fast forward - I find two main "manufacturers" of teardrop trailers and settled on one (Camp-Inn trailers in Wisconsin) and started budgeting with my wife to buy one and somewhere in the conversation I uttered the always very dangerous phrase, "you know, I could probably built that for half what it costs to buy it" - insert here: air raid siren, flashing STOP light, old video footage of trains coliding head on, etc... And my wife DID NOT STOP ME RIGHT THEN AND THERE.
I found a great online forum of people who had built teardrop trailers (www.mikenchell.com/forums) and digested as much as I could. I even purchased plans from the sole purveyor (at that time) of homebuilt teardrop plans (www.kuffelcreek.com/teardrops) However, I wasn't crazy about the size, shape, or construction methods for the trailer featured in the plans. So I shelved the plans and decided that I would reverse engineer the trailer that my wife and I had been considering buying and just build a close replica of it (http://www.tinycamper.com/). What I figured would be a 6 month project took 18 months and adding in the rent on my workshop and my time (even at minimum wage) probably cost me as much as buying the thing new, but I had a ball building it (Ok- maybe not the emergency room trip when I removed half of my index fingernail with a box cutter). So enough about the What and Why; lets get to the tour....