Amphicar BUYER

Vintage campers as a part of the car hobby?

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I have a 1958 camper (and a 1963 Heilite tent camper) that I actually use and tow behind a few of my old cars. There are a lot of vintage camper sites and collectors. Last year we took our to a local car show (Road Knights in Colorado). They allowed it to come in but when I went to leave they treated us as if we tried to show 2015 camper, VERY rude!. They were mad that it was there and even said it shouldn't be there as it was not "transportation related"! What... what? Just how is it supposed to go camping if not behind a vehicle?? They tried to make us wait to be the absolute last one to leave just be be jerks. I left with it anyway. They tried to stop me, but they figured I was not going to succumb to their BS.

 

Do you think vintage campers should be a part of the old car hobby? Why aren't they looked at in the same light as any old transportation items? 

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Most car people I know think vintage campers with an appropriate vintage tow vehicle are pretty cool and certainly appropriate.

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I have no problem with the idea but how do you then not allow boats, car trailers, or anything else designed to be towed behind a motor vehicle? Are travel trailers simply large non factory authorized accessories? Interesting idea to discuss in any case.

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1 hour ago, Amphicar BUYER said:

Do you think vintage campers should be a part of the old car hobby? Why aren't they looked at in the same light as any old transportation items? 

To quote Horace Greeley, "Go West, young man!"  For more than 20 years, major regional concours in Northern California (Ironstone, Alameda Point, and the now-defunct Palo Alto and Silverado) have had very popular classes for vintage travel trailers and housecars.  Participants arrive the night before the show and are allowed two camping nights on the premises, including the night following the show.  Many trailers are opened for the public to walk through.  The widest smiles on the grounds are found on people experiencing the vintage trailer exhibit!  Almost all are replete with wonderful period accessories from fishing tackle to magazines to white picket fences (folding) to vintage spice containers.  I'm talking about at least 20 participants in the unjudged class.  Vintage tow vehicles are required, but in this class only, resto-mod tow vehicles are permitted.

 

Restorer32, the class requires that the trailer be pre-1975 and be designed for overnight accommodations of people.  And at Lake Tahoe (as one might expect) there are joint antique auto and historic boat shows. 

 

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Well, it strikes me that their use of the words, "transportation related", were misguided. Vintage campers are certainly related to Transportation. But they use two words in their online information, "automobile" and "vehicle", which leads me to suppose you threw them a curve and they tried to take a bat to you.  ?

BTW, love those vintage campers... And boats, as well.

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Was tempted to bring my '86 Vixen RV to events but sold and bought a more modern lightweight folding camper instead.

 

Not sure about a trailer alone but certainly if both TV and trailer are vintage.

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The Ocean Reef Club (Key Largo, Florida) has an annual "Vintage Weekend" event in which classic cars, boats and aircraft are featured.  I'm not a member, but I've been fortunate enough to have been invited to attend the show as a guest in years past.  The machines entered (I understand it is by invitation only) in the show are world class and are most impressive.  I'm sure that a sufficiently rare travel trailer, pulled by a rare Duesenberg (or equivalent) would not be Inappropriate; however, wangling an invitation to show them could be difficult.  If any of you ever get a chance to attend this 4 day event, don't pass it up.

 

Cheerios,

Grog

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I think you were just a victim of a show run by jerks, nothing more than that.  I have a collection of vintage hearses and I've encountered more than my fair share of car show jerks myself, ranging from your basic cold shoulder to outright being asked to leave.  I don't think there was an objection to your camper, rather I think that anything out of the ordinary confuses some people to the point that jerk mode sets in.  Personally, I love it when I come across a vintage camper or vintage boat behind a similar vintage tow vehicle, and it happens so infrequently that I doubt there's any need for concerns about them overrunning car shows.

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It depends totally on the rules of the show.  In AACA we accept motor homes because most manufactures did not build or offer campers as factory equipment.  Motor homes are accepted because they can be as delivered by the manufacturer and are legal to be driven on the highway.  See this link.

 

 

I knew the owner of this house car that owned it from 1960 to 2006 when he sold it to the current owner.  As a motor driven vehicle, it would be allowable at any show.. 

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Mostly depends on the show and maybe the condition of the camper. An old unrestored car could be said to have "patina". An old unrestored camper most likely doesn't have that cachet and may just look "junky". It doesn't matter what is in the eye of the beholder, whoever runs the show sets the rules. Don't like the rules? Don't show up. Pretty simple..............Bob

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Very good point.  If you want to show the camper, call the show chairman first to discuss

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46 minutes ago, 61polara said:

In AACA we accept motor homes because most manufactures did not build or offer campers as factory equipment.

Then will AACA accept my 1937 Pierce-Arrow Travelodge Model A (the largest, 19-ft 'can') because it was built by an auto manufacturer?  To be pulled by a Pierce-Arrow automobile, of course.  Edinmass, take note....

 

A friend in NorCal has a pre-war Studebaker house car which never had a passenger car body--i.e, built on a bare chassis.  Is this eligible for AACA shows?

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Interesting question about the Studebaker. If a house car body was built on a new chassis would that class it with custom built automobiles?

 

For those who get the appeal of old campers, there are special shows and get togethers for vintage RVs.

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11 hours ago, Grimy said:

Then will AACA accept my 1937 Pierce-Arrow Travelodge Model A (the largest, 19-ft 'can') because it was built by an auto manufacturer?  To be pulled by a Pierce-Arrow automobile of course.  Edinmass, take note....

 

A friend in NorCal has a pre-war Studebaker house car which never had a passenger car body--i.e, built on a bare chassis.  Is this eligible for AACA shows?

Pierce also made ice boxes, motor bikes and bicycles.  GM made motorhomes,  ice boxes, farm tractors and locomotive's. So do you say automotive related or manufacture related?

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Edited by Joe in Canada (see edit history)
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My military surplus pup tent fits nicely in the trunk of the car.  Is that OK with the correct police?

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13 hours ago, superior1980 said:

I think you were just a victim of a show run by jerks, nothing more than that.  I have a collection of vintage hearses and I've encountered more than my fair share of car show jerks myself, ranging from your basic cold shoulder to outright being asked to leave.  I don't think there was an objection to your camper, rather I think that anything out of the ordinary confuses some people to the point that jerk mode sets in.  Personally, I love it when I come across a vintage camper or vintage boat behind a similar vintage tow vehicle, and it happens so infrequently that I doubt there's any need for concerns about them overrunning car shows.

 

Quote

"Very good point.  If you want to show the camper, call the show chairman first to discuss" 

 

The Road Knights were well aware I was bringing a 1958 Camper behind my 1964 Olds cvt. The problem came about only after I was there for about 4 hours and one of the club members complained. He tried to complain to me but he got impatient waiting for all the people that were surrounding my camper all day to leave so he could talk with me. (how ironic) .Once he was able to speak to me he was immediately quite rude and then only got more upset when I showed him the entry form where it clearly showed what I was bringing and confirmed by another (after I called him on the phone) that it was allowed. That is when it got childish. The club is a bunch of elitist jerks that hate you unless you fit into whatever they deem is "right". (mostly the ubiquitous Rat-camer-istang-ettes crowd) They had no qualms about taking my entry fee or letting me in the gate. I can tell you it was not hidden in the trunk of my Olds only to be a surprise later.

My camper is as you see it in the photo and always is the center of attention. The inside is beautiful and all as new (yes I use it regularly), the outside is untouched so far. It is certainly not ratty or junky (like some of the really poorly done, unsafe ratrods or a couple very poor "restorations" that were there. People were lined up almost all day to walk through it. Without a doubt, based on what I saw, it was the most popular thing there. 

 

I am well aware of the camper clubs and meets. I know many of those folks. My experience with the idiots I dealt with seems to not be an anomaly. My question is why are vintage campers not thought of in the same light as the corresponding vehicles that would have been pulling them when they were new? No different than any other period accessory. Period appliances and such inside only add to the draw. It's something that brings out story after story about going camping as a child. Just like the cars do. 

 

Campers are growing in popularity and prices are rising quickly. Just like before pickups and station wagons got popular. They were once merely parts cars and the pickups were not highly regarded either. Anything without a new paint job was only junk,  but now.... 

 

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Amphicar,

I had a somewhat similar response pulling up to a weekly car show night with a 1950's wood boat behind my 52 Ford F1. The comment was, This is a car show, not a boat show. I too was a bit miffed and never took it back. So be it.

 

As to camping, tent trailer or house trailers, love your unit!:)

If it is of any consolation I attend (as a spectator) the Annual Old Car Festival at Greenfield Village and there is always a display of two tent trailers with gear from back in the 20's along with a period row boat w/motor along side 20's vehicles. This is an event by preview acceptance only so there is some acceptance for this kind of thing.

Please don't let one bad experience taint your zeal for the unique.

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Just to verify my above post, found a picture.

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What look like tents in the background are actually tent trailers. They were sold by a company with some options including storage areas for camping gear. Obviously some work involved setting up and tearing down but really a nice added addition to a "Car Show".

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There is a mobile park near me that has set up several restored vintage trailers on the front row.

They rent them like motel rooms.

I recommend them to out of towners all the time.

I live in Oregon's wine country and tourists are into all that stuff.

The limos will pick you up at the trailer park for wine tours. There must be hundreds of wineries by now.

 

https://www.the-vintages.com/the-trailers/

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This picture was taken at one of the prison facilities in Oregon.

37 Desoto and a 57 Bristol.

The prison system has many invite only cars shows.

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I don't see any issue with a trailer if it is reasonably close to the same year as the car. If it caused a major problem as to parking or disturbed the layout I think it would be appropriate to disconnect and leave it at the edge of the field. I plan to bring my matching 1936 Pierce Twelve club sedan and model B Travelodge to Pebble some day, and they have attended in the past. The last time there was a PA/Travelodge on the ground there was a three year difference in manufacture, the car being older than the trailer. Two years ago I brought by Pierce Ice Box to the meet, and placed it in the tent with the judges tabulation table and water station. It didn't offend anyone, and I was interviewed on one of the cable tv car shows about it. It got the most coverage of any PA at the meet. I think taking a boat on a trailer is out of bounds for me, as it's a separate item not directly related to the car towing it. Just my two cents. Here is a photo of a Pierce ice box. 

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Here is a fabulous show that just started four years ago on the shore of Georgian Bay held on the greens of Cobble Beach golf course. The show has a very diverse array  from exotic supper cars and Full Classics to vintage motorcycle's. But they also accept vintage boats and planning to have docks installed in the near future to allow a wet show.  A couple of pictures from last year as I missed this year went on the Glidden tour instead. I would think if boats  fit in a major judged car show what is the problem with a house trailer also for display.

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I suspect that most shows would be glad to provide a place to display a vintage rig if given prior notice. As to a class, the usual ROT was at least three entries.

 

As far as I am concerned, if t has wheels, bring it on.

 

The biggest issue for me would be driving one on modern roads since trailer brakes were rare and hitches (particularly ones offset on the bumper) were often unsafe even then.

Edited by padgett (see edit history)

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'Wet Boat Show'

This is a private lake in the Portland area. Lake Oswego.

The only time non members can be on this lake it the one weekend of their boat show.

They make you have the bottom of your boat steam cleaned (they do it for you the weekend before the show)

Then they seal your boat to the trailer with a special wire tie that only the ramp people can remove before you launch.

Its a pretty big lake so sight seeing some of the very high end neighborhoods by water is fun.

They have a parade one afternoon and lots of people are out on their decks and such waving to the boats.

Fun Stuff.

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