Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Teardrop vs Popup Camper

If you are ready to take the big leap from tent to camper but don't want to invest in an SUV or pickup truck, you are probably trying to make the choice between a teardrop camper and a popup camper. Both are easily pulled and compact, and both offer far greater comfort than a tent, but the teardrop has some clear advantages.

Teardrop campers date back to the 1930s. They were very popular during the '30s and '40s, but lost some of their popularity as more intricate campers became more common. Teardrops have had enjoyed a comeback recently, however, as cars and SUVs get smaller and less powerful. Teardrops are fully enclosed hard-shelled compact pull-along campers. Popups typically have a hard top that can be cranked or raised by hydraulic lifts to room height, exposing soft sides and floored tents that pull out from each end.

Although both models are lightweight and easy to pull, teardrops have a sleek aerodynamic design, while popups are square and boxy. Both types of campers have roomy sleeping areas and kitchens of varying complexity depending on the price level of the unit.

Teardrops have a huge advantage over popups when it comes to setup and tear-down. Although most popups no longer require hand cranking to raise the top, they are practically useless until they are leveled, "popped up," and the insides are arranged. Upper cabinets may need to be folded up and the tent-like pull-outs must be slid out and raised before the camper can be used for anything. When it comes time to move the camper again, the process must be reversed; cabinet must be emptied, pull-outs must be folded and pushed in, and the top must once again be lowered.

Teardrops, on the other hand, are ready to use almost from the moment they are freed from the trailer hitch. Unless you have used it as roomy storage space, the sleeping area is ready for a good night's sleep with only minimal setup. The kitchen, which is accessible from the outside of the camper, is ready to cook a meal wherever you stop. The sleeping area is fully enclosed by a hard shell, not a soft side, so even heavy rains won't disturb your sleep.

Quick and easy setup, protection from the elements and an aerodynamic design make the teardrop a classic whose time has come again.

The Teardrop Trailers

Teardrop trailers were first made in California and became popular after they were promoted in magazines such as Mechanics Illustrated that provided plans for these trailers in the 1930s. Affordable, practical, and not too difficult to build, families used them for road trips after World War II. They remained common into the 1960s when their popularity seemed to dwindle. Still, their novelty and functionality make them delightful camping facilities that are easily pulled behind an automobile.

In the 1990s, the plans for these attractive trailers were made available on the internet, and the camping industry has seen a resurgence of these miniatures. The teardrop shape and style is eye-catching and almost whimsical, but the shape is also aerodynamic and that along with its lightweight characteristic makes the trailers eco-friendly.

Today, people are looking for economical travel and often choose nearby road trips instead of air travel. Since these lightweight, teardrop trailers are easy to hitch behind cars, are economical to pull, and provide cozy accommodations, they are the perfect choice for camping trips and road tours. Additionally, retro-mania has its ardent following and these trailers are charming examples of the "retro look."

A teardrop camping trailer is great for a couple or for small family camping. No need to book expensive hotel rooms and abide by a tour group's itinerary. People can come and go as they wish during their getaways. Their accommodation and transportation is with them. They can travel independently and at their leisure.

These convenient miniature homes on wheels measure between four and six feet wide, eight to ten feet long, and four or five feet tall. Inside, the trailer has room for a bed that will sleep two adults and storage for clothing and personal belongings. The rear contains a drop-down hatch that can be raised and secured. Inside this area under the hatch is a galley with room for a sink and mirror, a stove and maybe some storage space or area for a small cooler. For electricity, some units run on battery and others via standard RV hook-ups.

Teardrop trailers are functional and charmingly cozy. They make camping a delight and provide convenient sleeping arrangements for car trips. Almost any vehicle from high-powered motorcycles to most cars can pull them. These trailers will not strain engines or significantly raise the fuel usage. Individuals, couples, and families can enjoy these come-back teardrop trailers.