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A year or so ago my father sent me a text message with pictures of this adorable, vintage 1964 Arrow Little Chief travel trailer he’d discovered.
I knew that I wanted it immediately, and when the lady asked for a ridiculously low price, Daddy hauled it down off the mountain and home to my parent’s garage for me where it’s sat ever since.
I was so busy with the house and the wedding the last year I wasn’t really able to get down to work on it. Last weekend though, The Fellow and I spent the better part of Saturday starting to clean, disassemble, and work on what I’m calling Rosie Lee. (For those who don’t know, Rosie Lee is rhyming slang for a cup of tea.)
We swept out the camper and pulled out the old propane stove which Daddy will try to restore for me. I’m looking into re-porcelain or enameling options as I really would like blue appliances.
Next, we’ll take out the wooden boxes that form the seats/bed and rebuild them for better stability. I want to build up a toilet box in the little bathroom that will house a (Number 1 only) camp toilet. Our plan is to stay in campgrounds with facilities so the camper toilet would be for emergencies only.
We most likely won’t bother with a shower, but Daddy keeps talking about an outdoor showerhead which we may do just so we have the option of a shower if we really need one.
My goal is to make this project as low-cost as I can. We obviously could replace absolutely everything and make it pristine, but for now, I want to just go with functional. A lot of our friends have big fancy RVs and campers, and it would be fun to join in on the camping trips!
The hardest part has been deciding if I want to keep the original wood paneling or paint it. There are so many adorable travel trailers all over Pinterest which are white with teal or pink that I love. However, Daddy always leans towards original, and I think he may be right. Once you change something, it’s hard to go back.
One big area of concern is that a center section of roof paneling needs to be replaced, and I’m concerned with getting it to match.
The other tricky part is the flooring. We want to go with a vinyl flooring which most readily comes in a hardwood or stone look. With the original paneling, that’s a lot of wood in a small, round space.
I think I’ve almost landed at a decision, and I want your thoughts on it.
What I think I’ll do is replace the damaged roof section with additional paneling and maybe a patterned paper or paint in that section if I can’t get a true match. I’m leaning towards a white subway tile flooring to brighten it up, and then paint just the cabinets in the kitchen area to help tie it all together.
What do you think? I need some help!