When Ann's family has time, they travel in vintage trailers.
We Are Vintage Trailer People
We are vintage trailer people, and we love everything about them. There were hundreds of brands that were being manufactured in the 1950s, and many more that were homebuilt. Picking my top ten is difficult, but I do have favorites.
Many of the links I have included here go to other sites with pictures or plans. There is a lot of information for those who are interested.
Of course, I have added my 1959 Dalton, manufactured in El Monte, California. Isn't it pretty?
Brad's Benroy is well known in the teardrop trailer group. This beautiful trailer looks like it just rolled off the showroom floor. Bennett Peterson was one of the the designers. The Benroy is a great trailer and has stood the test of time. In the links, there are many more pictures.
This is a beautiful trailer that is always a showstopper. Then, he just had to have the miniature trailer that is actually an ice chest. Very, very clever!
The SnoozeBox is homebuilt. Built by Gene Gallipau in 1989, it is completely different than any other teardrop out there and very well known. We had not had it long when we went to the 1st International Teardrop Gathering in Minden, Nebraska. We were in the Rocky Mountain State Park in Colorado when a car pulled up to us and asked us if it was the Gallipau trailer. They were from Oregon, we are from California, and it was a very strange experience. They were also teardroppers on their way to the Gathering and knew Gene and the teardrop from rallies in Washington State.
All About My Unique SnoozeBox Teardrop
- Anatomy of a Teardrop Trailer
There are two rules regarding teardrop trailers. 1. The galley (kitchen) has to be in the back. 2. You can't stand up in it.
Gage has chronicled so many rallies and gatherings with his Dalton, he doesn't even have space to show them all. Every single trailer that has attended one of these events is photographed. There are many wonderful pictures and one could spend a whole day just checking them out. Thanks, Gage!
If my heart belongs to any trailer it is the Spartan. Gorgeous inside and out, it appeals to me more more than any other. I go to this link often to see what is for sale and pretend that I am in a position to afford one. The Spartan Trailer Company made airplanes in the early days, and the craftsmanship of their trailers is still evident today.
- Official Spartan Trailer Site
Someday I will have one of these.
The Unique Kamp Master
This is an incredible trailer, and if you get a chance to see one, make sure the owner gives you a tour. In 1953, plans for a trailer called the "Wild Goose" were published based on this trailer. I have the magazine and someday want Mr. Wonderful to make me one. I mean, you can't have too many teardrops.
The back hatch lifts high enough to allow access through the screen door that folds down when not in use.
Kamp Master Links
Kenskill made quality teardrop trailers but branched out into "stand-up" in the late 1940s. The first trailer was basically a teardrop that you could stand up in, but the later trailers sometimes had the kitchen over the axle, the bed in the middle, and a sitting area in the back.
This is an awesome trailer and even more awesome inside. She has a smaller one that is featured in the Halloween Trailer Decorations Lens.
Bowlus Road Chief
The picture above was borrowed from the Bowlus site, but we did see one at the Cottonwood Rally. The minute he pulled in, literally every camper left their campsite to go and see it. It took several hours before he was able to move on. What a totally incredible trailer.
6/25/2012 Update: One of these just came up for sale on the Vintage Travel Trailer Aficionados Facebook page. It was listed on eBay for $90,000. It was one of the few times I wished I were rich. It is a beauty.
John Agnew Shares His Love of Trailers with Huell Howser
Unbelievable! The Shasta trailer has its own Wikipedia page! This is what it says:
"Shasta travel trailers were travel trailers built between 1941 and 2004. Originally constructed in a factory in Los Angeles, California, to provide housing for members of the U.S. Armed Forces, the Shasta company expanded then built a production facility in Goshen, Indiana, opening in 1958. The company was purchased by Coachman Industries in 1976. At some point in time, Shasta trailers were produced by Shasta Industries, a division of the W.R. Grace Company (this information obtained from a 1975 model year owners manual).
"The 'wings' on the rear sides were a visible identifier in the 1960s and beyond. The name was sold to Coachmen Industries. Coachman marketed Shasta branded travel trailers until 2004. Only vintage trailers were available until 2008 when the brand was reintroduced complete with its identifying wings. The new trailers have updated art deco interiors and are all electric. Their features include stainless steel microwaves, stainless steel sinks and mini blinds, hot plate cooktops, wet baths and cutting edge entertainment features—including a 19" LCD television."
Source: Shasta entry on Wikipedia
I am not fond of Airstreams, but I must admit that the only one I would have is a Vintage Bambi. It is the best designed small trailer that I have seen, and it even has a bathroom. It is pretty amazing.
The Scad-A-Bout Teardrop
I almost bought this trailer but opted for the SnoozeBox instead. It was actually my first choice until my husband talked me into the SnoozeBox. The traditional Scad-A-Bout trailers are compact and very easy to tow. I like it because it is the same shape as the Benroy and King Richard.
The two-story Scad-A-Bout (pictured below) is the perfect family teardrop. Parents sleep inside and the kids get the top. This is a really fun trailer.
Do you have a favorite vintage trailer or teardrop? Share below!
Jaime on January 26, 2020:
1969 redline selling
fred Knust on August 15, 2018:
I purchased a 1948 blackhawk travel trailer and can not find any info on them, anyone have any ideas. email@example.com
Bergman on April 15, 2016:
My dad build a tear drop from scratch out of the metal MONEL in the 60's.
He was a finishing carpenter so the wood work was flawless.
Went camping, hunting & fishing all the time....good times!!!
Jonathan on January 02, 2016:
I own a scad a bout trailer that looks just like the one you have posted... I would be interested in selling it.
Get a hold of me.
Suzanne Sheffield from Mid-Atlantic on July 15, 2015:
Owning a vintage tear-drop camper is on my bucket list. Loved the article. Thumbs up!
newbie on May 27, 2015:
Do you know anything about the brand Giles trailers
stella vadakin from 3460NW 50 St Bell, Fl32619 on November 05, 2014:
I love the vintage travel trailers my favorite was the airstream , I sold mine when I got a motor home. Enjoyed this Hub very much. Stella
Ann Hinds (author) from So Cal on October 08, 2014:
Well Scott, I am delighted by your comment. I also favor the Dalton since it's my trailer. I am going to update all my trailer pages to reflect the information you provided. Feel free to contact me on my profile page with any other information you feel like sharing. Thanks!!!
Scott on October 08, 2014:
Maybe I'm biased toward Dalton since my Dad and Uncle Hap started manufacturing them in El Monte. Interesting fact I just learned from my older sister. The name Dalton was the street my Uncle Hap lived on so they called them Dalton trailers.
Fay Favored from USA on September 14, 2014:
I've never seen inside one of these little guys even though my parents owned a campground for many years. They are super efficient and easy to tote behind a vehicle. Great vintage photos really help you see how far they have come over the years.
odellespinoza on July 02, 2014:
The 2 story Scad-A-Bout looks interesting, I am just now seeing the teardrops on the highway and was wondering what it was, well now I know and I am interested in buying a new or used one (vintage) sounds more like my style. Well happy hunting for those of you who are searching for your little home away from home like myself, Odell over and out.
karen-r-fuson on June 27, 2014:
We had an Arisocrat LandCommander,16ft., 1967. We got it & made it cute again...we traded it for a 5th. wheel. I still miss it & loved everything about it...hard to find one with the same lay-out....I want another one !
Charito Maranan-Montecillo from Manila, Philippines on March 04, 2014:
What cool campers!
anonymous on September 02, 2013:
@anonymous: Hi Donna,
It's September and I am searching for folks with Ideal trailers to ask about re-sealing railing; mine's a '67. Did you find info on your trailer yet? Have you re-sealed any of it yet?
anonymous on August 12, 2013:
hi,have you seen one of these with lead light windows?how do i add a pic?
SBPI Inc on July 20, 2013:
What's scary is that I am old enough to actually remember these.
Great lens, love it.
anonymous on July 19, 2013:
I am looking for some parts for a 1948 Chrysler custom dog trailer. If you know of any sources please call me at 412. 798.3784 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. My name is chuck Warfield. Thanks
fcinternetmarketing on July 08, 2013:
paultheprogrammer on May 28, 2013:
Really great teardrop caravan lens.
Cynthia Haltom from Diamondhead on April 09, 2013:
You did a wonderful job on this lens. I really enjoyed the photos.
Ann Hinds (author) from So Cal on January 18, 2013:
@anonymous: Although I am no longer a part of the Tin Can Tourists, they do have a facebook page where you could ask for information. https://www.facebook.com/groups/92362365631 It looks like it is current and trailer people love to share information. I would start there.
anonymous on January 18, 2013:
I'm looking for information on Ideal travel trailers. My father had one which I have now inherited and I would like to fix it back up but I need a place to find info on it. I don't know the year but I'm guessing late 40's to early 50's. can you help?
marsha32 on November 27, 2012:
I had to stop in because I have a dram goal of buying myself a camper and traveling around---even if I end up traveling on my own! I am just fine with a small camper. The Benroy ones where the kitchen area is outside are just too cool.
anonymous on November 18, 2012:
i'm looking for a small vintage camper. like a little loafer. can't seem to find one that's not sold
Srena44 on September 19, 2012:
cricketlady on September 16, 2012:
I have a Teardrop! Love it!
anonymous on September 12, 2012:
i really like the benroy`s and the scad, so i was browsing around and came across one called lil swiss. i think the total package is well put. the wood work and paint, clean and flawless.
anonymous on June 30, 2012:
Love the scad a bout. And I thought I had seen them all. And hadn't seen hardly any of these ones. But maybe they not in Australia though. Great lens
Michey LM on June 11, 2012:
Hi! i like the Benroy... great nostalgic lens as some I am sure don't exist now. Thanks
TwylaN LM on April 27, 2012:
Teardrop trailers are pretty cool and I even had a chance to stay in one when I was a kid. Too bad they don't seem as popular anymore.
JGracey on April 10, 2012:
Making me feel sort of old since I remember a lot of those trailers. My parents bought a brand new Rambler back in 1969, after we spent countless summers in my aunt and uncles old Shasta. Thanks for the memories!
Tonie Cook from USA on March 30, 2012:
Teardrop trailers are my favorites of all time. Love this lens.
agoofyidea on March 10, 2012:
I love the teardrop trailers and would love to own one, but my husband is supersize and would never fit in one. Too bad. I do love to look at them.
allenwebstarme on February 19, 2012:
This the awesome lens about trailers. Here in India there is nothing like that.
anonymous on January 24, 2012:
I was in the neighborhood and just had to peek in once again, delightful!
jadehorseshoe on January 16, 2012:
Multiple Return Visitor. LUV this lens.
fullofshoes on January 05, 2012:
I absolutely love this lens. We are campers and have a light 5th wheel. We've been looking at vintage campers and other really small ones. Bookmarked!
anonymous on January 03, 2012:
So excited to see a Kenskill. We just purchased a 1967 20ft model and are restoring it. I had never even heard of them, but am very enjoying trying to learn more about them.
Frischy from Kentucky, USA on December 27, 2011:
Would love to have a small trailer that I could pull with my Dodge Caravan. Caravans have had some transmission issues, so would not dare to pull anything too heavy. A small trailer like some of these might work. Hmmm......
DebMartin on November 28, 2011:
wow. I love your '89 Snooze Box. Would love to see the inside of some of these. Fun lens that got me dreaming.
David Bynon from Prescott, Arizona on November 28, 2011:
I love this lens. I have so many great memories of camping with my grandfather. He pulled the old teardrop behind his 3/4 ton Dodge truck with a camper on back. We'd fish, camp out and explore until it was time to go home again. Great fun!
CanDoDaddy on November 18, 2011:
The restless wanderer in me wants to hook up to one of these babies and be gone for a while, maybe a long while! Nice "museum" of the good ole days on the slower, uncontested roads. Thanks.
Barb McCoy on November 12, 2011:
Loved seeing your vintage trailers. My husband has a homemade teardrop that he loves and has convinced me to travel in several times. He liked your lens!
Thanks for stopping by my Sonora Desert lens!
patinkc from Midwest on October 26, 2011:
What fun it would be to have a teardrop.
Nancy Oram on September 28, 2011:
My grandpa had a teardrop. So cute. It was sold when he died in 1964 for about $150. I wish we had it back!
WorkitSmart on September 05, 2011:
My husband always talks about getting a little airstream and making it into an office or a little guest house,
anonymous on September 03, 2011:
What wonderful fun! I love the Benroy with its ice chest, it really is a show stopper and the Bambi has me fascinated wondering how they got a bathroom in there.
Heather Burns from Wexford, Ireland on August 31, 2011:
I love Airstreams. What an awesome page! Love it!
CCGAL on August 16, 2011:
My favorite is the "Squarestream" Argosy by Airstream - I live in one and absolutely adore it. We had a Spartan at one time, and I'm sorry now that we sold it. I need to build a lens about my Argosy I guess ... anyway, I am really enjoying your RV lenses. Loving the photos and the links!
postingbits on August 14, 2011:
We are looking for a caravan for a trip through Europe in October, and I have looked at teardrops in the UK. They are not as creative as the teardrops you show here. The Mansion trailer would be good for our long distance travel, but I don't think my car will have the strength to pull it up hills :(
Lorelei Cohen from Canada on August 14, 2011:
Some of these teardrop trailers are beyond cute...they are absolutely adorable. Love the little kids peddle car and trailer set.
Wanda Fitzgerald from Central Florida on August 14, 2011:
Rons Benroy looks good to me. Some of these are so cute. I never knew people collected vintage trailers and had no idea what a teardrop was.
TravelingRae on August 13, 2011:
great lens, blessed by a SquidAngel 8/13/11
Sara Duggan from California on August 13, 2011:
I like Ron's benroy and the 2-story Scad-a-bout
Virginia Allain from Central Florida on August 12, 2011:
These are always fun to see going down the road. They must feel like a playhouse inside. Very interesting topic!