Handmade Teardrop Campers

Handmade Teardrop Campers

We should start out by saying that we are a group of Do-it-Yourself folks and wouldn’t discourage anyone from following a passion. However, when we noticed how many ‘handmade teardrop trailer’ plans were for sale on the internet, we thought we should probably offer a few thoughts for anyone considering a DIY teardrop trailer project.

Trailers are Complex

Is it possible to build your own teardrop trailer? Yes. Having been in the business of building trailers for quite some time now we can tell you that it is possible to buy a frame and start constructing your own trailer. However, we should point out that it’s a very complicated process; there is a reason most trailer owners don’t choose this route. If your teardrop trailer plan includes adding electricity, a potable water system and cooking or HVAC equipment, that’s a long list of skills you need to be comfortable with. Not only are you constructing the frame, the body and the interior / exterior of the trailer, but you’ll be responsible for wiring, plumbing and waterproofing it from top to bottom. Even if you’re comfortable with these tasks in a house, completing this list on a trailer–which has to move–is another animal. Given the cost of materials these days, the tools you’ll need to complete construction and the time you’ll need to invest, it may not be the savings bonanza you’re expecting.

Up Front Investment

Let’s say you’re all in on building a homemade teardrop trailer and you start buying the materials and tools to complete the job. Unless you’re working on the trailer full time, you may find that you’ll need 6 – 12 months to complete the process. Not only are you several thousand dollars into the materials list, but that’s also a huge time commitment. Also keep in mind that an off road teardrop is a binary piece of property. It’s either ready for the backcountry or it’s not. Until the day that it’s fully complete and ready for the first trip, it’s a big investment that’s sitting unused.

No Backup

The last item we should point out is that if your trailer has problems of any kind, there is no backup. You can’t rely on a warranty or an insurance plan to help cover water damage, mold, leaks, fire or wear and tear. To put it another way, if you built it, you’re in charge of maintenance as well, no matter what. If you buy a professionally made trailer you get two important features that no homemade teardrop trailer has: years of expert craftsmanship and the peace of mind that comes with a warranty. Again, if you’re dead set on building your own, our hat is off to you, but if you’re on the fence, make sure you know what you’re getting yourself into before you buy the plans.

Reading next

Off Grid Trailers: The Expedition 2.0 Overland Trailer
What Makes an Off Grid Camper Trailer?

Leave a comment

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.