Stitch and glue attempt 1.

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Stitch and glue attempt 1.

Postby Scottorious » Mon Mar 12, 2018 8:58 am

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So I starred a teardrop. I'm hoping to make a lightweight shell without a galley and just a quick tent replacement. I'm going with 6mm Baltic birch plywood on sides and 5mm wrapped around the top. I'll stitch and glue the seams and epoxy in any reinforcement as needed. With my car I'm trying to keep it as light as possible. Wish me luck!
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Re: Stitch and glue attempt 1.

Postby greygoos » Mon Mar 12, 2018 10:14 am

looking forward to seeing your build
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Re: Stitch and glue attempt 1.

Postby Scottorious » Mon Mar 12, 2018 3:59 pm

Built the base today with a 1/4" piece of underlayment sandwiches on each side of a 2x2 frame and epoxied and screwed together. The underlayment may flex a bit between each part of the frame as my spacing was 24 Inches but we'll see how bad, an additional layer of fibreglass would stiffen it up if deemed necessary. Ill attach the sides to the base and stitch the top to the sides with zip ties, then apply a fillet of thickened epoxy on the inside of the seams and a 4 inch fiberglass tape. Need to keep this light enough to remove from the trailer when I need to haul other stuff. 153443153444153445
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Re: Stitch and glue attempt 1.

Postby mallymal » Mon Mar 12, 2018 5:14 pm

Here in the uk we have a newspaper called the Daily Mirror. Back in the 60s they sponsored the design of a sailing dinghy that could be built by a home builder, with - you guessed it - copper wire stitching to join al the ply profiles together, then each ‘corner’ sealed with fibreglass tape and resin.
https://www.mirror.co.uk/news/uk-news/mirror-dinghy-50-years-old-1736534
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Re: Stitch and glue attempt 1.

Postby Scottorious » Mon Mar 12, 2018 5:34 pm

Exactly! If it works for boats to keep the water out then I Think the same will apply to a teardrop! Yet to be determined, though.
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Re: Stitch and glue attempt 1.

Postby friz » Tue Mar 13, 2018 6:34 pm

Yup, it works for a teardrop. Mine stays dry as a bone on the inside.Image

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Re: Stitch and glue attempt 1.

Postby Scottorious » Tue Mar 13, 2018 7:21 pm

I'd love to build the CLC teardrop but that kit is expensive for my purpose. They sure do look sharp though!
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Re: Stitch and glue attempt 1.

Postby friz » Wed Mar 14, 2018 10:33 am

I sure seems expensive when you are writing the check but I would do it the same way again. I don't think one could source the same quality of materials and plans build for any less money. The epoxy in the kit by itself is $800. I honestly think you get the CNC work for free or very cheap with the kit. I am tempted to do a similar build with lumber yard materials and see what I come up with though. I doubt it would be as pretty but I'm sure it could be as functional. The pretty factor is almost counterproductive on vacation. It draws people like flies and you spend a lot of your vacation time working as a volunteer salesperson for CLC.

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Re: Stitch and glue attempt 1.

Postby Scottorious » Mon Mar 26, 2018 2:28 pm

So I got the front skin stitched and glued onto the sides and it the top is super stiff, I think it will work wonderfully. As expected there is some flex in the sides since they are flat and have no tension on them. I'm thinking about some accent pieces that will serve as both an overhang for the door and structural stiffener down the side. I'm hoping that laminating a piece to the inside for the doors will stiffen it up a bit more. The shelves on the inside should add any final strength I hope to gain. It was my first attempt at epoxy and fiberglass but it's kind of fun to work with. The shell is still really light and I can easily pick it up with two people. Time to get brave and cut some holes in the side for doors.

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Re: Stitch and glue attempt 1.

Postby aggie79 » Wed Mar 28, 2018 7:52 pm

:thumbsup: :applause: :thumbsup:
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Re: Stitch and glue attempt 1.

Postby Scottorious » Sat Mar 31, 2018 10:53 pm

things are moving along. Really having fun experimenting with fiberglass and epoxy. Very few mechanical fasteners on the entire build. Most that exist will be removed and filled with thickened epoxy. The shell remains light enough that my girlfriend and I can pick it up. I really like the idea of owning one trailer and storing this on stands in the garage off the trailer. For electronics I'm going to run wires from the car back to thr trailer. The lithium battery in the Volt will maintain the lead acid battery so I have something like 10KWH of battery to draw from.

Need tips for vents. I want something cheap and easy. I might do some computer fans but I don't love the idea. A big fantastic fan vent just seems like overkill.

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Re: Stitch and glue attempt 1.

Postby friz » Sun Apr 01, 2018 7:05 am

Good job! I would be interested in your final cost when done and a materials list. My CLC was a bit pricey.

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Re: Stitch and glue attempt 1.

Postby Scottorious » Tue May 01, 2018 11:24 pm

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So I got the teardrop finished (mostly) and decided I needed to take it for a 3 night trip. I dragged it 500 miles on Saturday up to the Apostle Island National Lakeshore and then back home Monday. It held up great and the little chevy Volt pulled it just fine at 65(the rating for the trailer tires). I suppose everyone here catches the bug after they build their first one and see all the mistakes they want to correct in their second one. I will ABSOLUTELY build my next one stitch and glue. I can hoist it on and off the trailer solo and with the foam mattress and bedding I can pretty easily grab the back of the trailer and lift the whole thing off the ground. The downside is that it catches air on the interstate when I hit a big enough bump. the up side is that my car which has a tow rating of "please don't" has ZERO problem pulling this thing on a 1000 mile trip. I think it would be even better if I made it 3'6" tall instead of 4'. I flipped the harbor freight axle to lower the trailer and it's the perfect height for getting into and sitting at the teardrop door.

Oh yeah, those lights you see in the picture. I have 120 volts wherever I go thanks to an inverter that piggybacks from my cars lithium battery.

Not sure on total price at this point because most of my receipts have things that I need to return. I'm certainly under 1000 dollars and maybe even under 750.
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Re: Stitch and glue attempt 1.

Postby Pmullen503 » Wed May 02, 2018 5:37 am

Very nice. Did you do anything to stiffen the side walls?
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Re: Stitch and glue attempt 1.

Postby Scottorious » Wed May 02, 2018 5:46 am

I laminated 2 more layers of 1/4 plywood around the door cutout to stiffen it and act as the "jamb" for the door to seal against. The interior shelf also ties the two sides together and is epoxied it's entire length. There is some flex in the sides still, especially the curbside where it has no door. I'm not sure if that's a problem though.
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