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My top 9 trailer design reqs

At work we always have to write the dreaded user and functional requirements. Surprisingly, I am doing it willingly. Even though #1 is an assumption for me since I am part alien and don’t tolerate Earth’s biomolecular chemistry, I was inspired by the recent posts about allergies in Gadget’s Airstream Chronicles and Tour of America blogs to list it outright.

#1 Allergan free (or as much as possible): No rugs, minimal curtains, hypoallergenic cushions and pillows, careful choice on chemical use, no perfume, cats, or smoking at any time.

#2 Minimal weight: Use materials that are light weight, well distributed in the trailer. Better for environment and budget, less wear and tear, smaller tow vehicle needed, less gas used.

#3 Utility independence: Efficient 12V and gas appliances, quiet electric re-generation allowing for boondocking, cheaper camping and more parking options.

#4 Comfortable and convenient sleeping arrangement for two not-small people and occasional guest, both big and small.

#5 A place to eat and play cards for four (dinette conversion).

#6 Organized and ergonomic work space with a curbside view: chair with good back support and proper desk height, storage options, layout that accomodates for laptop, dock, network, printer, audio/visual, easy off switch for things that stay on.

#7 Simple aesthetics: My taste or lack thereof, not whats en vogue

Fred and Jade#8 Dog friendly: Fred and Jade just ganged up on me and reminded me that I had to mention this one.

#9 Vintage Airstream: Keep look and feel whenever not contrary to first eight items.

Any other suggestions?

3 Responses to “My top 9 trailer design reqs”

  1. Rich Luhr Says:

    Elly, that’s a great and thoughtful list. You echo many of our own requirements. When we first moved in we installed dust mite covers on all the bedding, and we have plans to remove what little carpeting there is in our trailer eventually.

    On #2, you will find that fuel mileage for gas tow vehicles generally runs about 10-12 MPG for an Airstream no matter what model you choose. That’s because your MPG has more to do with aerodynamic efficiency than weight. But you can still minimize your fuel requirements — far below what most commuters use — by simply traveling fewer miles per month. We burn a lot of fuel when we move, but by staying put a week or so, our overally yearly requirement is about what we needed when we lived in a fixed location and commuted to work, grocery store, etc!

    Clearly your path will lead you to solar power and some custom furniture, things we are both installing as well. You’ll see some ideas on our blog pretty soon. And yes, you can do everything you asked for while still keeping #9 intact. Good luck!

  2. elly Says:

    Thanks for your comment Rich! I hadn’t thought about the aerodynamic aspect vs the weight and I like that you pointed out that your driving/camping patterns are part of the gas formula. These are good things for a novice to be thinking about.

    I’m looking forward to reading about your experiences with the solar power and the custom furniture ideas!

  3. Rich C Says:

    I love the list Elly! I’m thinking about many items on it right now as well. Need the allergy free big time!

    Before I upgrade here, I’m considering a trailer switch. Need to think long and hard over the next few weeks. Now I’ll think about your list too.


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