Project Casita #2

The Swiss

Expedition Leader
Oh, we're going to need a LOT more photos than that!

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Hey, that is the one angle from where I can take a pic for that she looks pretty ;) the rest is still very much under construction. Right now she sits in my garage so it is hard to get any decent shots but I will take some more pics when I get her out for the Overland Expo.

This is about the only other shot I have of her.
 

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indiedog

Adventurer
I really like the look of this thing. Good size. Shame we don't get them here. Mind you I don't know where the 3 kids would sleep!
 

The Swiss

Expedition Leader
I really like the look of this thing. Good size. Shame we don't get them here. Mind you I don't know where the 3 kids would sleep!
... and we are drooling all over the trailers y'all have available in Australia and that we can't get here in the US :drool: I guess the grass is always greener on the other side :D
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To accommodate 3 kids, you would have to go with the 16' or 17' version with front and side bunk beds; it sleeps 6 but I would imagine would be somewhat crowded.
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Thanks for the comments, really like my Casita. I think my 13 footer will be perfect in size for what I need. Regarding plans, I have a good general idea but make changes as I go. The number one rule is to keep weight down as much as possible; before it goes into the trailer, I ask myself if it's function is worth the weight. I for example dropped my original idea of putting nice vinyl planks as flooring (total of about 120 lbs) in favor of some less exclusive sheet vinyl (30 lbs):
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Plans so far
  • Rear dinette (stock)
  • Galley on the left (stock)
  • Most likely high cabinet on the right (stock)
  • Replacing front bathroom that eats up tons of space with storage plus a place for a porta potti
  • Replace the electric water system with a simple manual pump
  • Replace standing fridge with a chest type fridge (still scanning classifieds for a good used ARB, Engel or National Luna)
  • Electrically I am not all that sure what to do yet and open for input. I will have a 110V system as I do have an air-conditioner, but I'm not sure if I interconnect 110V and 12V the way it comes stock, have an independent 110V system and run 12V of solar or what. Batteries, solar panels, inverters, converters, all that stuff is heavy! What I know is that I will have these practical battery operated LED puck lights throughout the trailer.
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The build is a slow adventurous journey by itself. Like with all adventures, I enjoy most of it, am scared of some of it and flat out hate it sometimes, make plans that then have to get changed again. I get blindsided by obstacles where I didn't expect them and breeze through stuff I thought will be arduous. Building this is as much of the experience as it will be to take it to places! :)
 
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The Swiss

Expedition Leader
Suspension and underbelly any plans?
The rubber torsion axle appears to be in good shape. There are not a lot of low hanging parts that would need attention and I don't have any ambitions or illusions to conquer the Rubicon with this, protecting it from getting blasted with rocks and gravel will be my man concern. Maybe an Australian type rock guard ;)
 

indiedog

Adventurer
... and we are drooling all over the trailers y'all have available in Australia and that we can't get here in the US :drool: I guess the grass is always greener on the other side :D
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To accommodate 3 kids, you would have to go with the 16' or 17' version with front and side bunk beds; it sleeps 6 but I would imagine would be somewhat crowded.
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That's the thing. As soon as we mention to any of the usual companies here that we have 3 kids they start walking us to the bigger trailers/vans. It's a real challenge to find something that is small enough to tow around comfortably to where we want to go that can expand sufficiently to sleep us all. We'd like to get away from acres of canvas but doubt that's really possible. I do have a plan though. :ylsmoke:

You are right, there are always things on the other side of the hill that we think are better. You guys do seem to have a lot of variety available with older model campers. Bigger market I guess.
 

The Swiss

Expedition Leader
Took my Casita for her maiden voyage to the Overland Expo East near Asheville, NC.
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The interior of my Casita still is very much under construction: bed in the rear
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Boxes with my camping stuff and a porta potty in the front.
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But being inside a camper during a torrential downpour and staying nice and dry is a absolute great feeling :wings: no matter how spartan the interior
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Next will be installing the pantry, then starting with some of the electrics. I decided on a 12 volt system running of a deep cycle battery charged by solar, and a completely separate 110V system just for running the AC and an outlet for my better half's hairdryer when hooked up to outside power, saving the weight for convertors and invertors.
 

RandomAbstract

Adventurer
I have been trying to decide on my next trailer, upgrading from a teardrop. Last night I was researching fiberglass eggs. Is the fiberglass too brittle for overland duty? Nothing more rough than neglected forest service roads. I have also been pondering cargo trailer conversions.
 

The Swiss

Expedition Leader
I have been trying to decide on my next trailer, upgrading from a teardrop. Last night I was researching fiberglass eggs. Is the fiberglass too brittle for overland duty? Nothing more rough than neglected forest service roads. I have also been pondering cargo trailer conversions.
Yup, washboard roads are about the worst for the equipment. I don't have many dirt road miles on my trailer to really have a qualified opinion but I don't feel that the fiberglass is too brittle. There are some superficial hairline cracks in the clear coat like most older fiberglass eggs have but nothing beyond that. I convinced they hold up better than any other camper trailer or pop-ups (incl. the so called "off-road" pop ups) but obviously they are no off-road trailers. I think structure-wise you can take a fiberglass egg wherever you took your tear drop.

An different issue is to washboard-proof the interior. No regular cabinet door latches will keep the cabinets close on a fire road, something I will be addressing on this build.
 

indiedog

Adventurer
Re' the longevity of fibreglass, or anything else for that matter, my lowly educated thinking is that it comes back to the quality of your suspension and the sensibility of the person behind the wheel. If you've got light suspension (or too stiff), no dampening and a heavy foot you will test out any construction on washboard roads.

Note the above ignores things like UV degradation etc.....
 
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dwh

Tail-End Charlie
Boats take a beating too, and fiberglass works pretty well in that application.
 

spressomon

Expedition Leader
Hijack 2: And http://www.fiberglass-rv-4sale.com

Oliver Trailer has a decent forum too. Although little overlap for most of us there are a few on that forum that are posting about gravel road travels, etc.

I think, per indiedog, a compliant suspension and, depending what brand egg/fiberglass trailer we're discussing, a heavier duty/more protective frame swap would go along way to being USFS & BLM gravel road tolerant for most "boondockers".

Maybe like the newly created "Roof Top Tents & Awnings" forum category, a fiberglass trailer forum or subforum might be useful for us 'glass types.

Apologies to Michael/The Swiss for my diversion.
 
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