Atma Travelear, with Aluminum Frame

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Re: Atma Travelear, with Aluminum Frame

Postby Debraizhot » Mon Aug 03, 2015 8:11 pm

Another quick note-it pulls fantastic. I got a solid ~16mpg pulling it with my Jeep Commander at the posted ~70mph speeds.
Any concern I had that the aluminum frame would not be stiff enough totally evaporated.
Very solid going down the road and at the camp site.

On the way back home Mrs Debra and I developed a new punch-list of some updates.
First is to build and install new water storage under the frame.
Second we are going to add a luggage rack and integrate some kind of privacy egress.
Last, we are going to polish up the aluminum and add the chrome trim.
This was such a delight to do and a real joy to share with each one of you.
Very best regards from Debra and Bryant.
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Re: Atma Travelear, with Aluminum Frame

Postby aggie79 » Wed Aug 05, 2015 3:32 pm

Congratulations on your first outing! I'm glad y'all had a good time. :thumbsup: :applause: :thumbsup:

Your teardrop was a great build. Thank you for sharing it with us.
Tom (& Linda)
For more on our Silver Beatle teardrop:
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93503
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Re: Atma Travelear, with Aluminum Frame

Postby rebapuck » Mon Aug 24, 2015 12:09 am

Don't you just love it when a plan succeeds?
Judy
1966 VW camper
1967 VW singlecab
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Re: Atma Travelear, with Aluminum Frame

Postby Debraizhot » Mon Sep 07, 2015 4:00 pm

We just got back from the first full trip. We took a week and camped at:
Palo-Dura-TX
Trinidad-CO
Mueller-CO
The trailer worked great. Even in the 45 degree weather we had to open the windows or run the AC. Before we left I had to change out the water storage from the 'big blue' walmart water tank to tanks under the chassis. It seems that tanks for teardrops are hard to find. Most tanks are way too big. To address this I made the water tanks from polyethylene, bus-trays we purchased from a restaurant supply. We got two of these with covers and used bulkhead connectors from Tractor Supply. Please ignore the tar-it gets everywhere...
135647

The assembly of the tanks is pretty easy except for the bonding. Nomally polyethylene cannot be glued. The reason for that is that this is a low-energy plastic. At a molecular level it 'repeals' other materials. However, if you flame the plastic with a propane torch it can be glued with a very strong bond. The propane torch adds oxygen molecules and allows most adhesives to bond very well. I used RTV for the joints-works perfect. To mount the tanks after building, I screwed 1/2" PVC into the hand-hold Channel of the bus-trays. They I used plywood brackets that press onto the PVC pipe to hold the tanks in place. Sorry I did not have more photos, but we were on a tight schedule-many thanks had to be completed before the trip.
135644135646135645

In the end, all went very well and we were very satisfied. In the next few weeks we will wet sand it, coat with sharkhyde and add the chrome trim. If there is an interest, I will build a tanks from
scratch to show the entire process.
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Re: Atma Travelear, with Aluminum Frame

Postby aggie79 » Fri Sep 11, 2015 9:45 am

Great idea on the water tanks! Looks like y'all had a great trip!
Tom (& Linda)
For more on our Silver Beatle teardrop:
Build Thread

93503
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