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  7. Five Cool Companies That Will Refurbish Your Vintage Trailer

Five Cool Companies That Will Refurbish Your Vintage Trailer

Get a second wind out of your dated RV with help from any one of these skilled craftspeople.

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New. It’s a word thrown around a lot in the outdoor and RV world. New adventures, new memories, new places to explore — all in shiny, new trailers and RVs. But, what about what’s not so new? What about the well-traveled trailers and RVs? The ones that may have seen their glory days come and go? The one that, with one look at, you can pinpoint exactly which decade they come from by their vibrant color scheme or riveted aluminum exteriors.

You may have one of these vintage trailers sitting in your garage or at a storage unit – no longer collecting memories, but instead dust and ware. What about them? Well, there’s actually a lot about them, specifically good, solid frames and potential for a second wind as a refurbished vintage trailer – full of memories, life, and flare – unique from all the new RVs on the road today.

Despite being old, most vintage trailers were built on incredibly solid frames. They can still have a lot of life left if they are refurbished and cared for properly. They just need some strategic upgrades and a little bit of TLC.  And, you don’t have to do the legwork yourself. Many individuals and companies exist who make a living buying, refurbishing, and selling older RVs and vintage trailers. Check out these five cool companies that will refurbish your vintage trailer.

Flyte Camp Vintage Trailers and Restorations

Flyte Camp Vintage Trailers and Restorations is based in Bend, Oregon. They not only offer restoration services but also have their own unique vintage trailer model: the Flyte Camp Neutron. The Neutron is a made-to-order, handcrafted trailer with a vintage feel and modern amenities. In addition to making their own specialized trailer, the company also has a creative inventory of old trailers that are primed and ready to be refurbished.

Operational since 2010, they have amassed an impressive portfolio of restoration and renovation projects over the past decade. In addition to this work, one of the company’s founders, Anna, runs a blog that offers a lot of restoration and trailer living tips for those that are just dipping their toes into this world.


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Down River Trailers

Down River Trailers is located a little bit off the beaten path in Winlock, Washington. Vintage trailer enthusiasts René and Jeremy own the shop and love bringing old trailers back from the precipice of the scrap heap has led to some pretty cool projects over the years. They are a full-service shop and a small business that will work directly with you to bring your custom trailer vision to life. Additionally, they also have a small inventory of vintage trailers that are ready to be given a second life. They also host or promote several vintage trailer rallies throughout the Pacific Northwest, which can be the perfect opportunity for aspiring trailer owners to learn more about trailer restoration, care, and living.

Motivated RV

Based in Austin, Texas, Motivated RV provides a wide variety of RV and trailer repair and restoration services. They can help you create a custom plan for your vintage trailer or simply refurbish everything exactly according to your trailer’s original specifications. Motivated RV also has lots of experience with repurposing older trailers and RVs. They have turned RVs and trailers into Airbnb tiny homes, coffee houses, traveling hair salons, and even music venues. They also have a small inventory of used and refurbished trailers and RVs on their lot. Check out their inventory here and learn more about the full spectrum of their renovation services here.


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Wanderlust Vintage Trailers

Based in Southern California, Wanderlust Vintage Trailers provides its own fleet of renovated vintage trailers. They are a female-owned small business focusing on made-to-order tiny homes on wheels. They’re a perfect choice for couples or solo travelers looking to tow a small, cozy home behind a truck or SUV. Most of their trailers are already refurbished and ready to sell. They focus on shorter trailers (about 13’ long) with an interior height of about 7’6”. These trailers are perfect for towing behind smaller SUVs because most of them weigh somewhere between 1200 and 1500 lbs. If you are going to be anywhere near Hawthorne, California in May 2021, they are offering several open house dates throughout the month!

Little House Trailer Company

Located near Seattle, Washington, the Little House Trailer Company specializes in working on riveted aluminum trailers and other unique motorhomes. In addition to doing complete restorations, they also offer a variety of additional services. That includes solar upgrades, testing for leaks, suspension improvements, and much more. They also offer DIY consultations. You can get design ideas and run your own vision by skilled experts to learn more about what’s realistic and what you need to look out for. In addition to that, the Little House Trailer Company also has a small inventory of older Airstream trailers and RVs that are available for restoration. So, if you are interested in a vintage trailer but you don’t already have one, you can head over to their Sumner location to enjoy a little vintage trailer shopping.

Vintage Trailer Restoration Tips

When you refurbish your vintage trailer, you will undoubtedly encounter unexpected challenges. Before you start your vintage trailer restoration project, here are a few tips to consider.

Set Your Budget

 Working on older trailers requires expecting the unexpected. So you should know exactly how much you are willing to spend before you start. Some projects will require larger budgets than others. Repairing water damage, addressing structural problems, and troubleshooting electrical issues, for example, can become costly very quickly.

Focus on Broken Parts First

Before you begin tearing a vintage trailer apart, it is good to assess what still works and what doesn’t. If your goal is to get your trailer back to a place where it will be functional for camping, you will need to know exactly which of your trailer appliances need to be replaced. Focusing on this first will help you spend money and time to get your trailer function before you focus on overhauling its appearance.

Start from The Ground And Work Your Way Up

Every good home must be built on a solid foundation. For a trailer, that foundation is the frame on which the rest of the trailer is built. If your frame isn’t intact, there’s no sense in spending money to replace the air conditioning units on the roof, for example.

From assessing frame integrity to replacing old carpet and installing laminate flooring, renovating the lower parts of a vintage trailer can take a lot of time and resources. So, it makes sense to start with these larger projects and work your way up from there.

Final Thoughts

No matter how much new RVs and trailer models provide, with new features, new accessories, and that intoxicating new RV smell, there’s something about that vintage trailer. The one that’s seen season-after-season of warm weather, crisp mountain air, hikes and trails, adventures, and memories.

There’s something about taking ownership of that vintage trailer that has been ignored and neglected for years, wiping the dust off, sprucing it up, and taking it back on the road for a second wind, for a second chance and for an adventure that is as unique as your vintage trailer. An adventure that will leave you and your vintage trailer feeling like new.

Tucker Ballister
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