Category Archives: Tiny House

General tiny house ideas

Travel Trailer Update – Bare Minimum

So, the budget is blown… ha!  we have had to take the camper SO much further apart than we intended, it is silly at this point to think of doing it well, like good enough for us to want to live here a year, for $1,500.  We didn’t bank of having to replace structure but we are down to the bones and then some, in fact, its just a flat trailer at this point, what once was a camper is no more…

That stinks BUT it’s also a pretty cool opportunity.  That means we get to redesign a bit… we could have worked with the window locations and what not but since we are re-framing we get to move those a tad.  James and I still like the overall geometry and shape of the Aloha, and for registration purposes it needs to keep looking like an aloha so that will stay the same but we are going to play with the windows and doors…

This is our new inspiration for the exterior!  We like the clean look and the semi industrial/modern feel.   I haven’t quite found anything that looks similar to how I picture the interior being built out… 
eljay2 El-Jay-remod5.jpg-nggid03368-ngg0dyn-0x0x100-00f0w010c010r110f110r010t010eljay3

So… we are going to need ten 4’x10′ sheets of aluminum to re-sheath the exterior… the best deal I could find is for .040 thick pieces at $72 bucks a pop… so that’s $720 we didn’t plan on spending!

The interior is tricky… we don’t want ANY particle type board, if there happens to be a leak we don’t want a night mare to fix, wood, real wood gets wet, swells and then goes back into shape… BUT it has to be flexible to make wrap the curves… no stores near us stock 1/8″ thick plywood.  they have all sorts of other compressed sheet goods but plywood is a  special order at best.  Even Home Depot!  They have some, and it’s only $4.97 a sheet but since its special order only it costs $79 to place the order… we need 12 sheets (plus any for furniture we may want).  So it SHOULD be $60 but just to order it will make it $140 instead… and I have heartburn about paying more just to order something than that something even costs… not to mention we can’t see the product first… The other option, which I am leaning more toward is the small shop down the street only offers 1 type of wood in 1/8″ sheets, mahogany.  The issue is that it is $18/sheet… James gets a discount with them for being a VIP shopper (they don’t like me…or maybe I don’t like them.. yeah, that’s it!  A guy once told me that I should not be involving myself with ‘building things, a mom’s place is at home with her children’… but that’s a longer story… I don’t shop there any more…).  Mahogany is a much stronger wood, I would feel more comfy with it, even though it’s also a bit heavier… it is what a lot of boats and what not are made from… It would be better and since it’s only slightly more than some crappy old pine once the order fee gets tacked on I think we are leaning toward that direction…  We were going to just seal it so you could see the wood grain but that was when it was pine, I like the lighter color of pine… the mahogany is more orangey-yellow, sadly not my style… I think we would end up painting it white like the tiny house… which works well for cleaning up after the beasties (kids and dog…)

Right now we are at a blank slate which is a much scarier spot then having some parameters to work within in my opinion… James and I are working through it though!  It’s interesting because it’s kind of more complex than the tiny house was, it has all of the same things in less than half of the space.  On top of that we have to be able to be grid tied AND off grid… AND under 1,500#!  That’s a lot to ask!  We’re going to do it though! 🙂  All of the appliances and fixtures have totally different requirements (but I think we have picked everything and figured out a way to make it work!).

So, pretty uninteresting update this weekend but a lot of thinking went into things! Here are some photos:

 

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Camper Reno… Continued… (Might be a micro tiny house now…)

We’ve been working hard on our camper since getting back from the Jamboree!  The trip was just what we need to put a little shuffle in our step and get through this, do it the right way, and get on the road!  James and I both also came back with a better understanding of what taking to the road with little kiddos will entail.  It was a bit of a scouting mission for us!

First, were going to aim for not more than two hours a day in the car on travel days.  That makes for a slow go but speed isn’t the point for us!

I’m not sure I ever really announced our ‘next plans’ here… we’re going to hit the road for a few months in our soon to be renovated travel trailer, check out other parts of the country and visit a bunch of national parks and monuments!  We may get done in a week but more likely it will be a few months…

We have talked about VagaBonding (both as a verb and the actual book, which we listened to on the drive, excellent ‘read’), timeline (next summer), working on the road (location independance is a major goal), eating on the road (healthy and budget friendly), exercising on the road (because its pretty important too), school, websiting, podcasting (because I miss it!), learning, being creative.  If we are going to do this as more than just a short vacation all of these things need to be accounted for.

The big question we keep wondering… Should we wait? Until the kids are older, when they will remember… wait until our lives are a bit more ‘where we want them to be’?  Wait until timing is ‘right’.

Nope, those things will never be ‘just right’.  If the kids can’t remember we may just have to go again later!  These are the things that shape lives, maybe more for James and I right now but that will certainly trickle down to the kids too… we want to do this now, so we’re going to raise it up the priority pole and make it happen… even if it means we put off our next project, if the yard doesn’t get turned ‘pretty’ for another year… whatever. We’re making the choice and we’re going to do what we can to make it happen.

Design inspiration-

I think you can see from our renovation photos, we are completely redoing this sucker.  A lot of vintage trailer restorers would be so mad!  Fact is this NEEDS to function for a family of four plus a large dog for an extended period of time though, the original Aloha just doesn’t do that.  We do love the look of the Aloha (and James loves the name, I’m convinced that was a selling point – He loves Hawaii).  We will be keeping the geometry of the trailer but we have decided to basically scrap everything else.  The frame was too rotted to reuse we were going to try to save the skin, patch the frame but at a point we just had to decide… nope… and we did.

So it is basically going to be a completely new micro house. (the funniest part of this to me.. I get to build another tiny house alongside Andrew Odom! (we built the same time the first found!, I had some serious dejavue when I saw this! 🙂 )

In short, it will be the same but different.  I want port hole windows, bunk beds for the kids, a bathroom, all things the original didn’t have…

Here is an update of where are trailer is at… or should I say where it has gone…