Sunday, July 21, 2013

My Cabin

I plan to be on the road until the end of the year. To improve my flexibility and comfort in travel I wanted to construct a compact camper in the back of an SUV that would allow me to sleep, cook, paint and write on the road. After trying a number of vehicles I settled on a Honda Element. It has a large space inside with a high ceiling, some limited off-road capability, good gas mileage and a skylight in the back that would allow me to look up at the stars as I went to sleep each night.
It’s typical of me to simplify everything that I attempt at the outset so that the experience of preparing may be as stressful as possible. I had drastically over-simplified my plan for building the camper into my car. Fortunately my friend (Guiness World Record holder, National Beard registrant, and father to an adorable baby girl: Dr. Colin Tschida. Without whom I would never have been able to make this journey) was willing to leave his table at the coffee shop vacant for a couple of weeks and help me design and build this thing, while teaching me a great deal about carpentry along the way.
Left to Right, Top to Bottom: Cutting the dadoes for each side of the trunk. Fitting the trunk together before gluing. Clamping overnight while glue dries. Assembling lid for trunk, rim was attached using biscuit joints. Fitting lid and drawer to trunk. Checking trunk in car. Fitting trunk and bed into car. Cutting out space for trap door access to bed storage. Fitting trap door to bed. Adding hinge to trunk lid so that it can open without hitting the rim of the door. Cup holder! Full spare tire cover and "conference table".
With all of that finished I prepared my house to be vacant for 6 months and packed my camper full of paints, canvases, books, clothes, tools and kitchen supplies; all carefully chosen to save space. Now I face a more difficult decision; where do I go after I drive away from my home?

1 comment: