Yup, that's me!
The one in the cowboy hat, running behind our 1955 Ford Country Squire station wagon and homemade teardrop trailer. I think my Dad was adding a gallon of gas so we could make it the rest of the way to the campground.
My Dad inspired my passion for building. Not only did he build that teardrop trailer- he built our first house in California. I like to think of him as the first "green" builder. In 1950, he got permission to take home the used packing crates from his job at GE Electric Boat. For two years, everyday after work, he would load up his car with as many of those crates as he could and take them home. The next day my brother was tasked with disassembling the crates, and then straightening the nails for reuse. Our house was built out of crates and cinderblocks (which were purchased 10 at a time so as not to overload the family station wagon).
The teardrop trailer was built out of an old truck axel and wheels, reclaimed wood and scrap metal. It was complete with beds in the front and a kitchen under the rear door.
When I first started thinking about the idea of living in an RV full time and traveling across the United States, I was reminded of my childhood, and summers spent in the back of that station wagon driving on route 66 from LA to Chicago and on to the east coast.
I have decided to build my own homemade RV and search for some of that magic I found on the road as a kid. I wanted an RV that could be parked on the street, driven like a car (no bus for me) and could be a comfortable home for one, driving across the country without staying in motels or having to depend on anyone else.
The Sprinter has a 6’ 2” tall roof in the back and 70” wide interior. There are complete
Sprinter RVs available for purchase. However, starting at $120k, they are out of my price range. The cargo Sprinter shell starts under 50k and can be converted to an RV using my own personal specifications. I also wanted 4x4 so I would not be hindered by weather or terrain. The clear choice is the Mercedes Sprinter.
So far, I have talked to a dealer, and have made a life size paper template of the Sprinter on the floor of my workshop. I am playing with different configurations which I will share with you soon.