When you need a camper trailer, you ideally have two options – either to buy one from a retailer or to convert one yourself.
The former obviously has several downsides. For instance, you may find a clever design, but it could also be a design that you’re not too crazy about.
Besides, you may end up paying a lot more than it is actually worth.
In contrast, converting a camper trailer to meet your custom needs can have several upsides.
Although it would cost you a lot of time and effort to customize your camper trailer, in the end, it would be worth it.
Here in this article, you’ll find everything from deciding your budget to the design of your trailer conversion.
So, without any further ado, let’s dig right in.
Step 1. Decide Your Budget
Even before you start taking out your tools, it’s vital you decide your budget.
You may come to know when you start with your project- it’s pretty easy to exceed your budget if you don’t keep track of it.
Since most campers usually take up a DIY project because it’s cheaper this way, you may not want to go overboard with your budget. Most certainly if your conversion project can cost you as much as buying a new trailer.
Indeed, your conversion project is your chance to make your camper as comfortable and luxurious as possible. And all that too within your budget.
You can start by researching some of the Car & Truck Accessories for sale online to prepare your budget.
Long story short, plan your budget carefully. And make sure that everything that you need in your camper can be bought within your set budget.
Step 2. Decide Your Camp Style
Every DIY project entails your specific needs, and camper conversion is no different.
When you start with your conversion project, you will need to specify your purpose and plan accordingly.
For instance, you may wish to travel full-time in your camper, or you may wish to use it for your occasional escape.
Here are a few things that you should consider, according to your camp style.
Systems to Install
If you are camping in RV parks, you will find it easy to access all the necessary amenities. For instance, you’ll have access to grid power, water supply, and proper sanitary disposals.
In contrast, if you’ll be camping in off-grid locations, you may need to prepare for all situations. For instance, you’ll be arranging for your bathroom and lavatory. Likewise, you will also need to arrange for a generator or solar equipment to power your camper.
In short, your camping preference will decide the systems you’ll need to install in your camper.
The layout of your Camper
Apart from a blank slate to start with, the best thing about trailer conversion is you get to make the most of the available space. In other words, you don’t need to spare any space for the driver’s cabin, to begin with.
Perhaps, you’ll need to consider a few other things to decide the layout for your camper.
- How many people will be using the camper will decide how you should be optimizing the space to accommodate all. For instance, if you have a family of four, you will need to arrange four beds. Additionally, you’ll also need to make sure that your camper has enough storage for everyone’s clothes and other stuff.
- Will you be cooking your own meals on the go, or will you be buying your food? Essentially, if the former is your choice, you may want to build a kitchen in your camper. You may also need to install a functional sink and create ample counter space to prepare your meals.
- If you plan to be working on the go, you may also need to create a working space in your camper. Also, installing necessary pieces of equipment such as a Wi-Fi router and a printer should also be taken into consideration while planning the layout.
- If you are a day packer, you may not be carrying around a lot of adventure gear with you. In contrast, if you are into mountain biking, you may need to carry a lot of safety gear with you. And likewise, you will need to consider arranging for storage in your camper trailer.
- Lastly, you should also consider how long you will be living in your camper at a time. If your trips are going to last more than a month, you will need to make space for all things to make your life comfortable. Otherwise, you may only need to arrange for things that are necessary for your trip at hand.
Step 3. Put Your Plan on Paper
Now, this is a crucial step to help you keep track of your project at all times.
Once you have decided what you need in your camper and how you wish to design it, put everything on paper.
You need not do it professionally, but just a rough idea can work.
The point here is to keep track of your conversion from dismantling to building and installing systems.
You’ll only need the necessary details about what goes where and hence work around it as you go.
To help you get better at your design, you can even consider taking some inspiration from the existing camper designs. There are plenty of ideas available on the internet. You can either study YouTube tutorials or available textual material.
Step 4. Get To Work
Now that you have everything in place, it’s time to bring out your tools and get to work.
Here’s a tip for you: if you find yourself stuck with any part during your conversion project, do not shy away from asking for help. Besides, try to be a little agile with your plans and budget. It should help you get the best out of your idea and make a comfortable camper to fit all your needs.
Now Go and Hit the Road
In the end, the real test is how your camper performs when it’s put to real-life utility.
Before you hit the road full-time, try testing your camper on short trips. And slowly, as you gain confidence, you should take your trailer for the longer trips.