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When you tour with a family of five and have more stuff than bus...


2004 Westrailer:
Scotty, I need more power!


Never one to let a good thing lie, I decided to add 110V hookups to the westrailer this year. Power comes in from a weatherproof box near the trailer tongue and is distributed with a receptacle on the counter. The counter also houses a switch for the new 30 watt fluorescent fixture installed in the pop-top.

Note the new weatherproof power inlet Receptacle and light switch 30W Fluorescent lighting


The 2003 Westrailer

Over the winter I revised my Westrailer with another cool feature...

Westrailer rear view

Rear view, nothing new here. The trailer
was  shortened slightly to 24" tall.

New doors on passenger side

Two new doors on  the passenger side.
Doors open

The side doors open to access  the  Coleman
stove,  5-gallon water  jug and cooler.


10 square feet of counter space

With the lid up we have 10 square feet of counter
easily accessible on campsite or at roadside.
The top now hinges from the drivers side.
Cooler drawer

The cooler slides out for easy access!
The right door supports a shelf for the stove

The right door swings around and locks in place
with a fold-up shelf for the coleman stove.


Tent fly to protect box contents

I added a tent fly to protect the box's
contents from the weather.
Propane and Spare tire

Easy access to the spare tire and propane tank.

40 cubic feet of storage capacity!

Over 40 cubic feet of secure  storage capacity.


Building the new cabinetry required a single sheet of plywood and about 12 hours of carpentry and painting.



The 2002 Westrailer in action:

Hood propped up
Westrailer Camping fully loaded camper

History:
This in the winter of 2001/2002 my good friend Collison Corner gave me a fibreglass pop-top roof from a 74 westy. I wanted its latching support struts, he simply wanted the whole works out of his garage. I borrowed my dad's boat trailer, and built a custom box incorporating a set of bus tail-light housings I had scavenged. Adam Narraway output the cool logo to vinyl for me, which helps complete the factory illusion. And then I painted on the rear bumper to complete the look.

Building materials:
The base of the Westrailer is a standard "Wall-mart" 40" x 48" 500 lb-rated utility trailer. I used a set of bed-rails to extend the bed of the trailer to 54" wide by 60" long. The front and side walls are 3/8" plywood, the floor is 3/4". 3/4" plywood is also used to close off the forward end of the pop-top. The corners are made from galvanized sheet-metal, with bus tail-light flanges pop-riveted and bondo-ed into place. The trailer is wired using a standard 4-wire system with a Reese 5-into-4 wire adapter installed in the bus. This allows me to share the trailer with others and also lets me tow other trailers that use the same system.


The Evolution of a Good Idea
flatbed trailer

The Flatbed.
Last summer I repainted my motorcycle trailer to make more room in the camper for people. This worked great, except that everywhere we went it looked like the Beverly Hillbillies. And the open trailer was not a secure storage space when left unattended on a campsite or parking lot.
This trailer was too tall
Tall, dark and handsome.
This is the first generation of westrailer. The rear corners were made of Sono-tube, which is basically very heavy cardboard. The sides of the trailer were designed to come up to the belt-line of the bus; it looks good in the picture but proved impractical in actual use since you couldn't see out the rear window. It held a lot of gear though, and was essential to the trip to EveryBus 2002. When the Sono-tube delaminated a week after Everybus I knew I needed to work the trailer over some more. I rebuilt the corners with galvanized sheetmetal and the side-wall height was reduced to 24".