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PostPosted: Tue Mar 25, 2008 6:14 pm
by starwars
I'm in that boat right now, I built a 4 four foot and despite my ordering my 7 year old daughter to stop growing - she just ignored me. Now she's at 52" tall and doesn't fit in the bunk anymore. Also I turn quite a bit at night and with my wife and I in the 4 foot, its too disruptive to turn.

I just ordered a 5' x 8' HF trailer just today and I'm going to transplant my 4x8 TD body onto it, THEN cut it right down the middle and widen it - fortunately its a woody with no permanent galley, so its just body work.

My advice is if you even find yourself "thinking" about a 5 foot, then go with that.

PostPosted: Wed Mar 26, 2008 7:10 am
by bobhenry
Where's the button for glad I built a 5' er the 1st time?

We're big folk not tall just big and the queen size mattress is what we sleep in whether at home or in the tear. One thing I did do that I haven't seen else where is to reinforce the spars and install a handicap grab bar in the ceiling. While we don't need it now it is there when the legs give out. Meanwhile we have found it great to hang a heater or fan on it keeps them up and out of the way. On a long trip we have utilized it to hang our good hanging clothes on as well.

PostPosted: Wed Mar 26, 2008 10:45 am
by SmokeyBob
For us the 4' wide has worked out for sleeping. Now it's the issue of not being able to stand up.
So it's time to build another one. 8)

PostPosted: Tue Apr 01, 2008 10:00 pm
by TinKicker
Ah, here I go overthinking again. Or am I just looking at things from an unexposed angle? We'll see...
I'm in Wimperdink's predicament: I'm torn between two dimensions-4' or 5'? Yes, the polls are leaning me toward a 5', but now for that unexposed angle...
We're all suffering from the fuel prices, so that's one of the many criteria foremost in my mind as I sit in front of my Sketchup-equipped computer designing my "Path to Freedom" (say that in a booming announcer-type voice) teardrop trailer. Revolving around that angle, think on this...
If you look at floorplan square footage, with a 4'x8' you have 32' square, right? If you have a 5'x8', then you bump up to 40'. So simple, so mouth-watering. All the possibilities of eight more squares of storage, luxury, whatever!
Frontal area affects fuel mileage, and if you live in the real world of an American blue-collar worker like I do, then you gotta' think about that. Obviously, 4' wide is better than 5' because of that fact, yet it just isn't that simple, is it? We want the SPACE for sleeping!
So we have to face yet another tradeoff in our search for wilderness nirvana...tears at the pump (no pun intended) or muscle aches in the morning. Flip that coin, buddy.
I'm prior military, so compared to the foxhole I once warmed in the forests of Fort Ben Harrison, Indiana back during a 17 degree December night in 1988, cuddled up to my best friend of 18 years in a 4 footer is pure heaven. Easy choice for me.
But then there's her. My sweetie, my love. Prior military? Heh-heh. The closest she ever got was watching John Wayne war movies with her dad (God rest his soul). Heck, she found a sweet 31' gooseneck job the other night I thought she'd fall to pieces over. That parked in a Wal-Mart parking lot is roughing it for her. HA!
I'm thinking we'll mock up the cardboard rig so she can look at it herself, because I haven't burdened her with all these choices yet, and I don't want to open the door to my perfect vision of a tear to let her in, only to hear her say, "Okay, here's the suitcase, where's the camper?"
Long story short (is that even possible now?), comfort will probably trump mileage for me. We'll just compromise elsewhere. But there are folks out there for whom mileage will be more you have to think about all I've just said.
One alternative for folks wanting a narrow trailer is to simply extend it. Go 10' or 12'. Put those barn door ends at the rear with drawers in them. Live large. Where I'm hung on that is my driveway, because I want a really LOW trailer (again, because of air resistance). I've got to do some major modelling/calculating to figure out if downhill/uphill drive is too acute at the bottom. In other words, will a long trailer drag?
Thanks for hearing me out guys. I hope I haven't burned you out. Just trying to cover it ALL.

PostPosted: Thu Oct 01, 2009 8:54 pm
by gjenkins
How about just mocking up a 4x6 sleeping area and trying it out a few nights?

PostPosted: Thu Oct 01, 2009 9:24 pm
by caseydog
I camp alone these days, so my 4 wide is plenty. If I still had a significant other that enjoys camping, then I would have gone 5-wide.

Everybody is different. I came from a backpacking background, so I am used to sleeping in small spaces. But that is me. When my ex-wife and I did a wilderness backpacking trip, we slept in a tent that was barely three feet wide -- but it weighed less than three pounds, which I carried on my back. When you have to carry it for ten miles, size definitely matters.

If you will be camping with another person, you will probably be happier with that extra foot of space. If it is just you, then it may not matter. I sleep on a big bed at home, but have no problems with a small one for camping.

So, since you are two, I'd probably recommend going wide. If you were a lone camper, you would probably do fine with four feet of width. But, with the wife along, I'd lean towards the five-wide.


PostPosted: Thu Oct 01, 2009 10:22 pm
by madjack
Kelsey, we are seriously in the blue collar category and say 5w is the way to go...our first tear was 4'wide and the very first night the wife and I spent in it, we woke up nose to nose with nowhere to go and both of said...simultaneously...5wide...with a 5wide you and the wife won't have to become accomplished at synchronized turning :D ;) ...with the 4w we got 20mpg and with the 5w we got 20mpg out of our tow long as the camper stays in the "wind shadow" of the TV, it really doesn't matter........................
madjack 8)

PostPosted: Fri Oct 02, 2009 8:12 am
by Arne
5' was an easy choice for me. I've slept 2 in a double bed, and 2 in a queen sized bed.... the queen won hands down. So, I built the t/d around a queen size mattress....

PostPosted: Fri Oct 02, 2009 8:33 pm
by TinKicker
Yeah, since my post in April I've finalized on a 5'. Arne, I came to the same it around my bed. That's for teardrop #1.
HOWEVER, since I'd like to do some camping before the kids move out I'm going to make like Star Wars (the movies, NOT the forum member! HA!) and build a prequel teardrop...#.5.
Actually, it's not going to be a's going to be a combination chuck wagon/storage trailer for all our gear, and it will be built on the 4'x8' HF trailer I bought back in July. Since that's all the 4' versus 5' info I can share--anything else would just hijack this thread--I'll tell you all about it and show you the plans in the near future.
When the day does come when it's just me and mama, five glorious feet it will be.

Size Matters

PostPosted: Fri Oct 02, 2009 10:43 pm
by Wild Bill
I am planning a SIX wide by 12'-6" long, standee. Under bed storage. Most full size tow rigs are at least 6 wide. My Van is 6'-6". I want to be able to travel for extended times when I retire, (assume that I make it) of 2 or 3 Months, I am building around a Queen Size Matress, Serta Pillow top, I do not want to feel cramped while sleeping. The extra fuel I may use in route will be worth the comfort when I arrive. I only want to build one trailer, I had considered at one time converting an old school bus, but with fuel prices, repair costs, maintenance, and size restrictions in a lot of campgrounds, storage realities, I have come to my senses and realized that will not work. I can pull a 20 year old trailer, as long as I maintain an serviceable tow rig. Good luck with what ever size you decide to build. Bill

PostPosted: Sat Oct 03, 2009 11:11 am
by Arne
I kind of matched up my tear to the tow.. I did not want extended mirrors nor wind resistance.... With the queen size width (t/d 64.5" wide), it met all my major criteria. The t/d is about the same width as the minivan.... and the front sides curve in.

PostPosted: Mon Oct 05, 2009 7:16 am
by bobhenry
Guess I am going backwards......

Chubby's 5'7" wide out to out (5'4") inside with the flip out galley and I am looking for a ultra light sleeper only this time will experiment with 4x9x4 wide maybe 4'6" wide if necessary( we are good sized folk) . I would like to tow without working the little TV 's to death. Yeah I could take the truck but really like the 35 - 40 MPG of the 2 smalled vehicles we own.

5 ft wide

PostPosted: Wed Dec 30, 2009 7:17 pm
by spud233
:roll: am building 1st td.wife said 5 ft wide for room.......she is the boss..using hf frame hanging over with support all sides 6 :thumbsup: :applause: 8) inches.this gives me a 5 x9 foot td.........KEEP THE WIFE HAPPY AT ALL COST

PostPosted: Wed Dec 30, 2009 7:25 pm
by mikeschn
I'm going smaller with my next TTT also. I want to be able to see behind me, without using towing mirrors. So maybe 66" wide.


PostPosted: Wed Dec 30, 2009 8:14 pm
by Shadow Catcher
Also left out is a 6 wide which is what ours is, come to find out that I was fortunate as this is the lowest tolerance for my wife who is a bit claustrophobic. We can tolerate a Queen size but out bed at home is a California King. This means you do not have to stick together during the summer, unless you want to.
I remember one individual at one of the gatherings who said "my wife would sleep in that" He has a 4 wide.