Thrifty Alternatives ..Building Foam Campers

Canvas covered foamies (Thrifty Alternatives...)

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Re: Thrifty Alternatives ..Building Foam Campers

Postby GPW » Fri Sep 08, 2017 8:12 am

David , covering with fabric is really easy if you take your time and plan things out . Some things to be aware of is good surface preparation, thorough glue coverage , and fabric shrinkage . But it does work very well, and also patches easily and neatly if needed … :thumbsup:

It’s been said many times … “ Covering is an unhurried job ! ” ;)
There’s no place like Foam !
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Re: Thrifty Alternatives ..Building Foam Campers

Postby Fiddlin'Billy » Tue Oct 10, 2017 2:02 pm

DONE!!!! :applause: :beer:

Hello, my name is Billy and I'm in the process of amassing parts for a Foamie. I will start a build journal and post the requisite pet photos in the appropriate thread.
Here are some tidbits I'd like to add to this never ending tome.
The south does not have the market cornered on hot weather. Iowa gets into the 100s and high humidity with long stretches of 80s to high 90s for most of June July and August, and lately that has spilled over into April, September and October. We don't have hurricanes (thank God) but we do have tornadoes and wicked thunderstorms with high winds and the other nastiness that comes with that.
It also gets well below zero here in the winter - 72 degrees is not cold ;) please stop saying it is. :eyebrows: And it's NOT relative, cold is cold and 72 is freaking warmer than my thermostat in winter :lol: - put a sweater on. :R

What else....?
I gotta say, to continue to tell someone they just have to read this thread before they start (or to learn the build methods) is a bit ridiculous. :roll: Better to update the master list of build journals or point folks towards George's build since he's refining the process so nicely. I had to keep the browser open at work for 2 full weeks before I got smart and started emailing links to whatever page I was on at the end the day. :thumbsup: Before that, when the browser was closed (accidentally by my co-worker who shares the computer and tolerates my duty shirking) I would have to click through a cARpload of pages because there is no "go to page x" button. :x It's a good thing the subject matter was so compelling and I had libations waiting to help ease the thread drift. :beer: I think there was a nice summary of the novella a few posts back. So much has happened in the ?!?!ten years two months?!? this story has been told. I hope folks are in good health and that the foamies are still intact.

I find the dead links and unviewable photos, of which there are many (seems like all links in the stickies) to be off-putting (like this post, eh? :) ).

I do have a question about that sledge hammer test and I thought someone else asked it too but it wasn't answered.
Was the sledge taken to a piece that was on the floor or some other surface? It seems to me that a better test would be to build a box and hit IT with the sledge. My suspicion is that it would create a big HOLE. Sort of like standing on a big stick while it's on the ground as opposed to standing on it while one end is elevated - snap! I'm still building a foamie, but I think that particular test shows nothing if it was done in the flat. The photos of the foamie that tipped while driving is the best example of durability. If only there had been a repair made instead of more driving leading to disaster. :cry:

I hope no one is offended as I can come across as a bit blunt when typing. :BE 8)
Wait, I need a couple more emojis
:beer: :FNP
There.
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Re: Thrifty Alternatives ..Building Foam Campers

Postby KCStudly » Tue Oct 10, 2017 2:44 pm

Congratulations on making it thru the big thread and welcome to the forums!

You can, in fact, select and go straight to any particular page of a large thread, just click on the "page XX of XXX" indicator in the header and it will open a window that you can input the page number you want to go to.

The sledge hammer question is really a moot point. Show me a traditional stick built TD owner that will let you swing a hammer at their build. It is a meaningless comparison. Compared to a traditional stick built with reasonable wall skins (most experienced builders recommend 1/8 ply, or 1/4 at the most), damage would be similar in my opinion. the more important question is, which one will be easier to fix? ;)
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Re: Thrifty Alternatives ..Building Foam Campers

Postby ghcoe » Tue Oct 10, 2017 5:22 pm

Fiddlin'Billy wrote:or point folks towards George's build since he's refining the process so nicely.


Thanks for the plug. Welcome to the forum.
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Gorrilla Glue, Great Stuff and Gripper. The three G's of foamie construction.

My build viewtopic.php?t=54099
Working with flashing for foamie construction viewtopic.php?f=55&t=60303
Making a hot wire http://tnttt.com/viewtopic.php?f=55&t=55323
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Re: Thrifty Alternatives ..Building Foam Campers

Postby Fiddlin'Billy » Tue Oct 10, 2017 9:30 pm

KCStudly wrote:Congratulations on making it thru the big thread and welcome to the forums!

You can, in fact, select and go straight to any particular page of a large thread, just click on the "page XX of XXX" indicator in the header and it will open a window that you can input the page number you want to go to.




Geez, I had no idea. I wonder how many other forums I visit have that feature. :duh:
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Re: Thrifty Alternatives ..Building Foam Campers

Postby GPW » Fri Oct 13, 2017 5:07 am

KC, that’s Cool !!! Thanks !!!

Billy , you’re more than welcome to do any testing you can imagine , just Please tell us your results… In the beginning ,as you know , a lot of people thought that Foam trailers were impossible and were going to implode if driven over 20 mph . It’s only by TESTING Everything that has kept this Foamie idea alive and proven it’s Reliability and practically … :thumbsup:
Not to mention , it’s cheaper , easier to build , and tows like almost nothing is there. ;)
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Re: Thrifty Alternatives ..Building Foam Campers

Postby spacer » Fri Oct 27, 2017 12:31 pm

I still have a lot of reading through this thread, but a couple things got me thinking...

I'm still at the point where I have some options. A foam teardrop seems like an ideal solution to my HHR's low tow rating. It gets about 26 mpg on average, day to day.
I'm not sure how much that mileage would suffer towing even a light teardrop. I think I would keep the front relatively high, at or just slightly above the roof of the car, and taper normally off the back.
I would hope my economy wouldn't suffer much at all, except of course in start/stop traffic, where it's all about weight.

My Suburban, on the other hand, gets about 16 mpg, mixed city/highway, though I can edge closer to 20 if I spend more time on the highway. If I can build a larger foamie teardrop with the same sort of design as
I was considering for my HHR, it seems that I might be able to get away with a very small loss of economy, even staying above the level of your average conversion van or 'boxy' camper... the latter would probably put me
just barely into two-digit range. I know this would be less of an issue if I'm only transporting myself to useful places on occasion, but I am thinking about some longer trips in which gas, even as relatively cheap as it is now, would be a major
expense.


Thoughts? It'd be bigger than the ones I've seen in here so far, but not horribly so. I'm thinking about 5' vertical inside, and whatever length I can find a deal on a trailer for.

In the meantime, I have over 400 pages left to go back and read... unless someone's condensed the useful bits into something more compact. :beer:
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Re: Thrifty Alternatives ..Building Foam Campers

Postby GPW » Sat Oct 28, 2017 6:08 am

Spacer , we think it’s all been useful … :D Good Luck , good reading … :thumbsup:
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Re: Thrifty Alternatives ..Building Foam Campers

Postby John61CT » Sat Oct 28, 2017 10:03 am

MPG won't increase much, only if it fits in the slipstream.

Going to the guzzler TV and a bigger tear will cost you a fair bit on those very long higher speed trips. Assume 5mpg increase and do the math.

Only you can judge if that trade off is worth the extra comfort.
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Re: Thrifty Alternatives ..Building Foam Campers

Postby spacer » Sat Oct 28, 2017 11:36 am

Yeah, that's the thing.

Seems like the smartest idea is to get rid of my two "extremes", and find some middle ground, like a Tacoma or Colorado.

I really hate buying and selling anything, particularly vehicles, but sometimes you find yourself in a spot where ya just gotta jump.
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Re: Thrifty Alternatives ..Building Foam Campers

Postby John61CT » Sat Oct 28, 2017 2:04 pm

I'd say build a superlight foamie see how you go with the HHR.

Make it look nice you can sell it if you decide you really need to go bigger.
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Re: Thrifty Alternatives ..Building Foam Campers

Postby GPW » Tue Nov 28, 2017 11:19 am

Anybody tried the new spray Gorilla Glue ? …. says Foam :D
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Re: Thrifty Alternatives ..Building Foam Campers

Postby tac422 » Tue Nov 28, 2017 9:11 pm

spacer wrote:I'm still at the point where I have some options. A foam teardrop seems like an ideal solution to my HHR's low tow rating. It gets about 26 mpg on average, day to day.
I'm not sure how much that mileage would suffer towing even a light teardrop.


My HHR tows the Big Pink really well. It weighs just about 1000 lbs. Mileage doesn't suffer to bad.
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Re: Thrifty Alternatives ..Building Foam Campers

Postby jondbar628 » Tue Nov 28, 2017 11:27 pm

Hmmm....Spraying G.G.?........What are you pondering GPW? Are you thinking as a glue for bonding, or as a finish coat ala Rowerwet's buddy who used it as a finish on a kayak? Either way, it seems like it would be very tricky to accomplish. MAybe 80% (or more) mineral spirits to 20% G.G.? Then have to be in a decently controlled environment, humidity-wise for an acceptable cure. If you're talking finish, you obviously don't want expansion & foaming. Interesting concept though. Could provide a more durable, paintable finish to PMF. May want to contact the GG manufacturer to put a bug in their ear. Cheap(ish), durable, paintable sparay-on finish for a multitude of applications........ Then again, if you're going to that trouble, maybe just use epoxy.......So much to consider :? ......jd
OK........I guess I misread your post. GG has a spray available? Haven't seen it......Boy do I feel dumber than usual.........jd
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Re: Thrifty Alternatives ..Building Foam Campers

Postby GPW » Wed Nov 29, 2017 5:31 am

We just wanted to know if anybody tried it ?  …. we did try the Gorilla Tape and it’s EXCELLENT ... :thumbsup:
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