Picture of Foamie Teardrop Camper
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Step 1: Get A Trailer

Picture of Get A Trailer
So I had this motorcycle trailer and wanted to sell it but thought why not build a camper to use this summer, then sell it...

Step 2: Build A Frame

Picture of Build A Frame
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I wasn't sure how I wanted to connect it so put an extra cross piece in towards front

I also wanted it to be wide enough to fit a queen 57"x 77" x6" matress, but the trailer is 48" so I built the frame a bit wider...

Two sides 2x4x73
Front and rear 2x4x57
Interior crossbraces 2x4x54 and 2x2x54
Lengthwise 2x2's added because of the wheelwell cutouts.

Step 3: Attach To Frame

Picture of Attach To Frame
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The pictures show where I notched out the wheel well covers to accommodate the width needed for the 57" matress

Going to use lag bolts and/or u bolts to hold in place depending in the trailer we are using (have a catamaran sailboat trailer that this could fit on when camp-sailing)

Step 4: Cut Out Walls

Picture of Cut Out Walls
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So I used the ellipse maker idea from profiles listed on


Here was exact one I used to model mine

Drew the ellipses using string and sharpie

Front and rear corners are Circle radius 30"
Front roof curve is small ellipse using two focal points the front of which uses same center as circle and the back one 30" from the rear edge. Adjust length as required to get height desired.
Rear roof curve used rear focal point and another beyond the front wall to get a more gradually sloping line.
Rear lower is also 30" radius circle
(See drawing pictures added)

Then began cutting

long razor/box cutter
Handheld torch
Optional tools: hot knife (foam carving specialty tool) $30 or soEDIT***GET THE HOT KNIFE!!!

EDIT*** the best way to cut foam is to get a hot knife- details later*** ...previous comments: The best way to carve is heat up knife with torch and cut a few inches at a time. Takes a while but works well. Clean off the blade whichever way you please... (Xps- extruded polystyrene- will melt onto blade then won't cut as well if covered)

More details on ellipse drawing will be added to this step later.
calskin2 months ago

Great idea. Did you save a lot of weight using foam?

tsmith475 months ago

Has this been finished? I'm curious to see final steps.

-chase-1 year ago

Glad to see someone tried this idea using building foam. I had thought of the possibilities but need the "horse" to pull the cart first! lol

Like others I can't wait to see the finnished product.

Skinning it further I suppose he might go for an exterior grade Luane or maybe even Aluminum flashing...? All it needs really is a hard but light weight coating to protect tge Styrofoam. Other tha n that, its almost good to go as is. Might get one or two seasons out of it as is (if he plans to sell the trailer in the future).

Btw, I looked for the eleipse profile on page link you gave. Didn't see that name mentioned, though they have some neat looking profiles. Which one did you use exactly? Or is it just based on one?

Weight? Have you ballparked the gross weight of the final build yet?

And lastly, thanks for sharing your build thus far. I enjoyed the read and info.

- chase -

kc8hps1 year ago
I think essentially this is like using a sips method where insulation is glued in between two hard finish sheets. This inturn gives the board rigid structure and becomes a very lightweight and strong. I will be very curious to see how this turns out as I am looking to do something similar.
framistan1 year ago

Hope to see the finished camper. What will you use to cover the top. This would be extremely light weight, but will it hold together at highway speeds? Will it be waterproof? I have a trailer that I need to make into a camper, so will be watching for an update to see the finished camper so I can get ideas. Using the high density styro for sides eliminates a lot of wood sawing and work. very creative thinking ,Josborne1.