In this interview, Silvia, from Luján (Buenos Aires, Argentina), tells us how they built their own mobile home with their family.
– How did you come up with the idea of building the motorhome yourself?
In 2012 we went to Santa Rosa de Calamuchita and it was a spectacular day, but out of nowhere the water caught us when we were setting up the tent, everything got wet! So we decided to make a tent trailer (the first 2 photos shown below), we used it a couple of times and we really enjoyed it, we went to Navarro, Mar de Ajó, Carlos Paz and San Rafael in Mendoza.
But travelling with our trailer to the different campsites we began to observe the rolling boxes. And well, we sold the trailer, and … Let’s get to work !!!
– Where did you get help in the beginning, things like blueprints or manuals?
Regarding the plans, the design is ours, we were observing several photos on the internet and looking for ideas, to make it to our liking.
Materials: frame is 5 × 5 thick wall square spout, 2 × 2 thick wall spout sides, motor home axle with 5-leaf elastic, 13-wheeled rim, 1 ″ machimbre wood floor lined with floor vinyl, the sides in addition to the 2 × 2 pipes have tergopol in between, insulating and lined with aluminum sheet. It has acrylic windows of different sizes and a sliding glass window.
– What are the basic characteristics of the motorhome?
It measures 3.50 m long, 1.95 m wide and 1.90 m high. We do not weigh it but it is light.
– How is the interior distribution in the box, what artifacts, beds, etc?
Inside it has a double bed of 1 and a half square, with 1 bunk (and another one that we have to do because the 5-month-old granddaughter is joining us), chemical bathroom, sink with 12v water pump, medicine cabinet. It does not have a shower because we use the bathrooms in the campsites.
Camping kitchen with 4 burners and oven, refrigerator with freezer, a heating fan, and a cabinet for clothes. Besides, it has a 3 m by 3.50 m waterproof carioca canvas dining room with mosquito nets made by me… everything is home-made !!, there we set up the table with chairs, the TVLed 25 ″, where we made a door for it To the box, under the double bed, we take the kitchen to the dining room side on some guides.
We design it to our liking and comfort.
– During construction, did you encounter difficulties?
The only thing was that when we finished making the structure it was very high, so we lowered it about 10 cm later, thank God, nothing more!
– Can you make a rough estimate of how long the construction took and how many people participated?
Construction took us 8 months: working weekends, holidays and free time. Those of us who worked in the box were: my husband, my 3 daughters, my son-in-law Juan, my brother Javier, a family friend named Miguel and myself.
– What was the approximate investment in total?
Well, as I was telling you, we sold the tent trailer for 10,000 pesos (Argentine pesos) and we calculated that we spent another 10,000 more! … But it is very much worth it.
– Did they have previous knowledge of construction, materials, welding, painting, etc; or were they learning on the go?
Yes, my husband is a mechanic and we had the tools to build it. I work in a sewing workshop so I dared to sew the entire dining room.
– Has it been released yet?
We premiered it a little bit ago on the long weekend of May 1 of the current year (2014). In the Gómez lagoon (Junín, Buenos Aires).
– After trying it, did you come up with something you would do differently or add something to it?
No, the only thing now is that we have to add another bunk for the granddaughter. But then everything is great !!
Interview with Silvia Rios