Vintage Camping Trailer

July 13, 2014

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If you’ve been following along, you know this Vintage Camping Trailer project has been around for a few Summer seasons. It all began here with an epic exterior paint job.

Here it was pre-paint… pre… anything. My how things have changed!

original-trailer-exterior

The original interior was packed with upper cabinets all the way around. Did I mention this is a 14′ trailer. We could barely stand inside and snap a picture (hence, the terrible pics coming up!).

original-trailer-interior2

Space was tight, and not very functional for our little family of 3. We decided to ditch the oven for a fridge, as we do most of our camping meals on the fire, or on a gas, picnic-table stove.

original-trailer-interior

And, after we got ripping out a few of the unneccessary items, we found… treasure! wood rot! Yippee. So, the demo continued and the rebuild began. New studs, new walls, new paneling. The upside is, it made wiring the new electrical a lot easier.

trailer-studs

trailer-strippeddown

And, the new vinyl flooring went down with nothing to get in its way. Looking on the bright side!

flooring

New construction continued with new bench frames, with storage. Here is one side, using the dining table top to create a twin size bed area.

dining-bench-build

And a sliding, pull-out bench seat, on the opposite side of the trailer, makes room for a queen size bed.

double-bench-build

This super easy tape adhered back-splash, from Home Depot, finished off the kitchen area.

new-trailer-backsplash

All of those second-hand cushions got all new fabric. ** Here is a tip for an easy zipper addition. Cut the old zipper from the old covers leaving a couple of inches of fabric around and just sew your new fabric cover right onto the old fabric. As easy as adding a hem. **

trailer-new-cushions

Of course we visited the exterior paint, here

trailer-new-paint

trailer-camper-chevron

camper-trailer-side

After aaaaaall of that… we are ready to finish off the inside and make things a little more pretty.

I made new curtains in this adorable Joel Dewberry fabric. (The same fabric in the Kiddos big girl room, just a different colour scheme).

Here is the queen size fold-out bed, with some cute new sheets and blankets in yellow and teal.

trailer-camper-bed1

And here is the same cozy spot folded up as a bench seat. It pops up very easy, perfect for those rainy camping afternoons, hiding out with a few friends, playing a few rounds of “go fish”.

trailer-camper-bench-seat

A homemade “Keep Calm and Camp On” print, popped into an Ikea frame finishes our bunk off and keeps it feeling homey.

trailer-camper-double-bed

We reassembled the kitchen with the back-splash. We were able to keep the original upper and lower cabinets, after a quick sanding and fresh coat of paint.

trailer-camper-kitchen

The dining table is perfect for our little family. And a cheery place to grab some Cheerios and coffee in the morning.

trailer-camper-table

And how about that gorgeous steel cabinet? A one-of-a-kind find from this awesome antiques shop! Ever After, love this place! Perfect as our pantry-on-wheels.

trailer-camper-dining

Our last finishing touch? A custom decal to greet our fellow happy campers…

have-a-nice-day-decal

Have a nice day, indeed!

trailer-have-a-nice-day2

trailer-camper-door

She’s finished y’all. How about that. Its looking pretty welcoming in there… we are ready for some quality family time!

98 thoughts on “Vintage Camping Trailer

  1. Sharon

    Great redo.
    On a scale from 1-10 how hard was it ?
    Please share the type of paint you used on the outside
    Thank you

    Reply
    1. freshcrush Post author

      Thanks Sharon. It wasn’t so hard if you know what you’re doing, just very time consuming! Difficulty, I’d give it a 5, and time commitment would be a 9. ;) Hope that helps!

      Reply
  2. Patti from Cincinnati

    Love it! You mentioned in your story that you could not stand up in the camper prior to the remodel. Did gutting the unit allow you to gain more head room somehow? Second question, does the queen sofa / bed have rollers underneath that aid in the movement from sofa to bed (I am trying to understand how that works)?

    Reply
    1. freshcrush Post author

      Thanks Patti! Yep, we got rid of the cabinets above the eating and sleeping areas. It makes it a lot easier to slip in and out of those spaces, and left the camper feeling a lot more roomy and comfortable. The queen bed had two sheets of plywood that we sleep on… we have a rail made of wood screwed into the wall, so when it’s a couch it’s the 2 sheets of plywood on top of each other, and when it’s the bed we slide the top piece of plywood out on to the wall rail, and lay down the cushions to create the bed. Hope that helps! :)

      Reply
  3. Ann

    Oh my. I love this so much! We are going to renovate a 1970 Tag a Long (similar to your beauty). Can you tell me where you found the replacement kitchen table? I can’t find one anywhere.

    Reply
  4. Nicole

    So cute!!! What did you use for curtain rods? Ours has blinds that are falling apart and I would much prefer curtains, however am struggling to find something that sits close to the wall. Thanks!

    Reply
    1. freshcrush Post author

      Thanks Nicole! I used a product called Spring Sash Rod (mine was from Levolor). It’s a flexible rubber coated cording, you can trim it to size, and screw in eye-hooks to either end to connect to matching hooks screwed into your trailer paneling. Depending on the curtain placement, you can apply it to both the top and bottom hem of your curtain to really hold it down and block out the light. You can see it a little closer in this post about how I made a play-kitchen for my daughter, here: http://freshcrush.com/kiddos-play-kitchen/ Hope that helps!

      Reply
  5. ez

    The vintage camper trailer that you have now is surprisingly very impressive. You did a very great job or renovating this one, from the exterior to the interior the design, color ,paint,furniture.You choose it right.

    Reply
  6. simple nature decor

    I love anything 50’s 60’s and 70’s this is so cool! I love your camper transformation, you must feel so rewarding, so nice its going to be when you go on family vacations in your camper!

    Reply
  7. Charlotte

    Holy wow, that is some makeover! Absolutely love how fresh and pretty it is. Would it be okay to share this post and one picture on our new glamping website with a link back to you? This would be perfect for our glamper inspiration page. Love it!

    Reply
  8. Julie Kutchback

    Absolutely adorable! I’ve been looking for an old camper (canned ham) to remodel…but having a hard time locating one. If anyone has one or knows where I can locate one, I’d greatly appreciate the help!
    Happy Camping!

    Reply
      1. Iris

        Hi,
        Super cute camper! I just purchased a 1968 Go-Tag-Along camper which I am just started to restore.
        Did your camper have a pull down bed over the rear bed? Mine has one but I want to remove it as it is
        very heavy and awkward. If your did have one, how did you remove it? and was it very difficult?
        Cannot wait until I am painting the outside and replacing the windows, as that will mean I am almost finished.
        Happy camping, Iris

        Reply
        1. freshcrush Post author

          Hi! Thanks Iris!! No, didn’t have to deal with an upper bunk, sorry, no advice there. I wish you the best of luck with your project! Hope it goes smoothly for you, and you have fun with it! It’ll be worth it. They are so much fun. ;)

          Reply
  9. Kate

    Fantastic job. We just bought a vintage Beeline trailer to do over. I have a couple of questions. Were you able to empty out the trailer without taking down walls? Or did you take down walls so you could empty it out? the door seems to narrow to bring things out of.
    What materials did you use to redo the walls?
    Kate

    Reply
    1. freshcrush Post author

      Thanks Kate! Yes we could of emptied out the trailer without removing walls, but we ended up needing to remove everything because we found wood rot on the wood frame (behind the walls). Yes, everything fit through the door, but we also removed all the windows so we could clean them properly, and before painting the exterior — this helped give us some wiggle room as well, and assisted in loading in materials. The walls are made from flexible, very thin, particle board, like a bead-board. (something like this) … we used a mix of grooved and flat board surface. These are great because they are lightweight, and you can paint them any colour you choose. Hope this helps! Good luck!!

      Reply
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  12. Colleen

    I’m so in love with this! You really outdid yourself… and I’m now off to convince my hubby we need one too!

    Also… that’s the same floor we used in our basement- it’s the best!

    Reply
  13. Marilyn Silvers

    is it a standard queen size bed? I was wandering if it is longer than 6 feet. I would love to do this but we are kinda tall!

    Reply
    1. freshcrush Post author

      Thanks Marilyn! I’m going to say it’s a little smaller than a classic queen. However, my husband is over 6 foot tall, and we do just fine. It’s not a bed I would want to necessarily sleep in for a year-long road trip… but for weekends at the lake, it does just fine. Hope that helps! Thanks for visiting!

      Reply
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  15. miranda

    I just picked up a 77 surfside and Im looking to redo the ceiling/walls. Its just fiberglass and has no wooden strapping to adhere wallboard to. So i was curious if you had any suggestions? Also what type of material did you use for your ceiling? Great job with your project, I dig the wainscoting. Thanks

    Reply
    1. freshcrush Post author

      Sounds fun! Is there a way you could bolt some framing onto your existing interior, and work out from there? Our ceiling and walls are actually the same thin board product, just in two different styles (flat and beadboard), both found at home depot. Good luck!!

      Reply
    2. Elaine

      There is a great web/blog site for fiberglass trailer owners – fiberglassrv.com. The people on there know everything there is to know about FGRVs and are more than willing to answer any question you may have There is also a huge store of information in their archives where you can research almost any subject about FGRVs. I am in the same situation as you – no wall covering – but the FGRVs usually come with an insulated fabric affixed to the interior walls, and it can be ordered from Scamp, a long-time trailer maker. Anyway, the site is great for following the modifications other are making and, especially for us newbies, what not to do. Good luck.

      Reply
      1. miranda

        Hi, thanks for the links I’m going to speak with scamp on Tuesday when the parts people are back in. Being From Canada I’m nervous of the shipping but darn excited to get started!

        Reply
  16. Nicole B.

    Love this!!! Had to get a closer look after reading your Liebster post! I’ve been daydreaming for years about buying an old camper to restore. So fun!

    Reply
    1. freshcrush Post author

      Thanks Nicole! It was so. much. fun. working on the trailer together with my husband. Kept us busy, but what a pay-off! Totally recommend giving it a try!

      Reply
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  21. SANDRA SCHUERCH

    This is something I have always dreamed of having. I have been a tent camper since childhood but now nearing 60 the ground is just too much. You have provided me with some great inspiration for a little travel comfort in my golden years.

    Reply
    1. Fresh Crush Post author

      Thanks Sandra! I’m touched you left that comment. Thanks for the visit, and best of luck searching for that little gem that will get you a little more comfortable! Keep camping! Take care!

      Reply
  22. Mary

    I love how you restored your vintage trailer. I just got a vintage trailer which looks near identical to yours and probably needs as much or more work, too. I don’t recall what make yours is; mine is a 1959 Leisure Home which I can find no data on…. because ours are so similar I was wondering if they are both by the same manufacturer. I hope mine turns out at least half as nice as yours… it’s gorgeous and bright. I never thought of doing white interior but it sure livens up the inside. Great job. Mary Grovers

    Reply
  23. Kathy Aispuro

    I loved this. It is so close to the same floor plan that my oldie has and I am newly inspired to fix it up.

    Reply
  24. Jessica Foster

    Love it! We are in the process of restoring a 68 Shasta. I was wondering how you did the back seat and made it fold out. Ours originally folded out but the people we bough it from already tore everything out back there and made it a permanent bed. We want to do it the way it is supposed to be. any help would be very greatly appreciated.

    Reply
    1. Fresh Crush Post author

      Hi Jessica — Yes, for sure, I’ll do my best… so there is a stationary bedframe that everything is resting on in the “bench position”, and to move it into the “bed position”, we have rails attached to the wall that reach forward towards the kitchen area. There is 2 layers of flat plywood resting on one another as a bench. The upper plywood layer slides out and rests on those rails I mentioned to hold all of the cushions (and us), in a bed position. It’s finished on the front edge with a wide painted board, and that stops the cushions from slipping around too (you can see this board in the images)… Does that help?? Let me know if I can explain anything further for you. And GOOD LUCK with your project, thanks so much for connecting — I’d love to see your finished trailer!!

      Reply
    1. Fresh Crush Post author

      Thanks Kathleen. We were lucky enough to be able to borrow a auto sprayer. We taped our pattern with everyday painter’s tape, and removed and taped off all the window openings and went for it! We spent around $150 on car grade paint. Thanks!!

      Reply
  25. Kathy Taylor

    I have a Class C 1986 Honey camper. most of the interior is in good shape but needs work at the seams above the passenger side cab. I can’t do it or afford it & would be willing to sell it to someone who would like to work on it & use it for camping. Its a great camper & lots of good memories with my family

    Reply
  26. Patsy Power Young

    My whole family has so much talent.
    A family friend used a small trailer like this to finish his last 2 years of college. Beautiful!!!

    Reply
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    1. Fresh Crush Post author

      Thank you so much Lisa! I actually made the decal myself on my computer, and gave the file to a sign shop who deals with cut vinyl to make it for me! If I remember correctly, it only cost around $40.

      Reply
  28. darlene

    I absolutely love everything about this! Great Job!
    We bought an 8 foot camper for $200 and had to pull it out of a farmer’s field…it was completely rotten inside. The frame is in great shape but we have just started to gut it and refinish. What materials did you use to replace the walls inside?

    Reply
    1. Fresh Crush Post author

      Wow Darlene, that sounds like you’ve got quite an adventure on your hands! We were able to rebuild our inner frame from regular lumber from the hardware store, we insulated with a styrofoam looking, (very stiff) insulation, and then we were able to reattach our aluminum shell onto our framework. Hope that helps? The handy thing about needing to rip everything back to the studs, is were were able to run new electrical! Good luck Darlene, and THANK YOU so much!

      Reply
  29. Melanie

    Did you paint the exterior (main bod) yourself? If so, how did you do it. I’m about to purchase my own Shasta, which needs painting desperately. I love your trailer — very cute!

    Reply
    1. Fresh Crush Post author

      Thank you so much Melanie! Yes we did! It was a big and sticky job… but we were lucky enough to be able to borrow an automobile sprayer from a friend. We pulled it into a large bay (at my husband’s work), removed all the glass, and taped everything (including the window frames) off with plastic. We used regular green painters tape for the Chevron pattern. And sprayed away! We spent around $150 or so on special auto primer and paint. We also made sure to paint the heads of any screws that would be replaced after the fact, by punching them into a large piece of cardboard, for spraying. Good luck!!! It’s worth it, I promise ;)

      Reply
  30. Adri

    lovvvvvvve LOVVVVVE what you did with the trailer!!!!! I have an urge to go buy one now!!!!! My problem is that it would take me 10 years before I finish it! lol

    Reply
  31. betty

    I love this! You did an awsome job with it. Camping with the family is the best. I would love to do something like this, but husband is always concerned that these old campers are heavy to pull. It’s hard to glam up our pop up ;)

    Reply
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  33. Deanna

    So inspiring! The finished product looks new, clean, and very comfortable, despite it being a small camper. What an inspiring project – can’t wait to do mine!

    Reply
  34. Travis

    I like what you did with the trailer, very nice job. I was surfing the net and came across your blog and your trailer looks exactly like mine except mine doesn’t have the small window near the top right rear side. Would you happen to know the year and make of your trailer ? Any info would be appreciated. Thanks.

    Reply

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