The convertible teardrop trailer you see on this page was built in the Spring of 2010 for about $1,700, and took about 10 weeks from the time the first bolt on the frame was tightened, to the time it was ready for its maiden voyage to Tearstock. Weighing in at only about 700lbs, it can be pulled by almost any vehicle.
The teardrop is a little over 9' long, not including the trailer tongue. The sleeping cabin is a about 79" long, and 48 1/2" wide, which is not much smaller than a full size bed. There is enough storage in the galley for a a Coleman 50qt chest cooler, as well as cast iron cookware and food.
The convertible is wired for 110VAC, 12VDC, and also has a USB power receptacle (5VDC). LED lights illuminate the inside, outside, and galley. They are toggled on and off using a remote control key fob, much like the one that you may use to lock and unlock your car doors.
One of the nicest things about the convertible is how comfortable it is. Some people are apprehensive about sleeping in a teardrop due to their small size. The convertible is perfect for someone who has even the slightest claustrophobia. The top can be removed in only a couple minutes, and then you can enjoy the fresh air and a great view of the sky above. Also, I have a 4" memory foam mattress that makes you feel like you're sleeping on a cloud!
Aside from being a convertible, another even more unique feature is that it has a roof fan. Roof fans are pretty standard on most teardrops, but this is the only convertible that I have seen, or even heard of, that has a roof fan. The challenge I faced was installing it in the roof, and still having the convertible top ENTIRELY removable.
If you'd like to purchase the Construction Guide to build your own convertible teardrop camper just like this one, click here.
A Teardrop is not a space ship. Its a box on two wheels. They are only as complicated as you make them. Some have very elaborate cabinets and woodwork, built-in sinks with water pumps, and LCD TV/DVD combos.
My convertible is pretty basic, and so were my tools. I used wrenches to assemble the trailer frame, and cut all the wood using a circular saw and a handheld jigsaw. The only thing that I didn't have was a handheld belt sander, which I borrowed from friend. All three of these power tools can be purchased fairly cheap at a discount tool store, such as Harbor Freight Tools.
As far as time is concerned, you can take as long as you want! The only deadline is the one you make. Some people start building in the early Spring in hopes of making Summer trips, while a few people actually take years to complete their master- pieces. Just build at your own pace!
Teardrops come in many shapes and sizes, and their options can vary just as much. Two of the most popular commercially built Teardrops are Little Guy Teardrops, and Camp-Inn Teardrops. A new Little Guy will cost you between $3000 and $9,000, while a Camp-Inn Raindrop 560 could set you back as much as $18,000!
Another other option is to buy a used camper. A search of Craigslist often turns up a used teardrop that is for sale. If you can't find a used one with the features you want, then you could search for a private builder who will collaborate with you and construct a camper to suit your needs. Your last option (and the most fun) is to build one yourself!
A teardrop is a small travel trailer which was popular back in the 30's, 40's,and 50's. The name is derived from the areodynamic shape that many of the tiny travel trailers employ.
They are an attractive option to a larger RV due to their cost, maneuverability, and minimal effect on gas mileage. Many teardrops weigh around 1,000lbs when loaded with gear, which makes it possible for almost any vehicle to pull.
Most are based on either a 4x8 or 5x10 trailer, and can comfortably sleep 2 adults. Some are as wide as 6 feet and can provide room for children as well.