Oct 182014

What type of trailer do you own?

1956 Yellowstone, 19’ park model trailer.

yellowstone at newport 2

Owned by Annie and Terry Palmer – Mesa, AZ

Where did you find your trailer/tow vehicle?

yellowstone 119In May the trailer was purchased  in Austin, TX. From 1964 to 2012 it spent most of its’ life in a park in NY.   It was then purchased and went to VA for just a couple of months before the owner was transferred to TX.

What is unique or interesting about your trailer?

yellowstone 127yellowstone 134The most interesting thing about the trailer is the fact that the interior is 95% original – un-restored. The water and propane lines were replaced, the Click/Clack couch recovered, the lower screen in the door replaced, new curtains, and a ¾ bed replaced the single size. The hot water heater was replaced with an on-demand system. They didn’t want to trust a 58 year old unit and wanted more storage. After the new unit was installed, Terry took apart the 58 year old water heater and found that the heating element and the zinc anode looked to be un-used.  Most people who have seen it think it has been restored.

The exterior has been polished,  as it was oxidized very badly. Terry did three of the five steps on the lower half and sanded the upper half before turning it over to Russels  Polishing to be finished. The light bezels have been re-chromed. Terry  extended  the tongue two feet  so the tailgate on the truck could be lowered. A receiver hitch was installed to make it harder for thieves to steal.  New tires and artillery wheels were installed. Terry has plans to paint three stripes to match the colors of the truck.

What do you like about vintage trailers?

yellowstone 133yellowstone 26Terry jokes, “ We have a vintage trailer so Annie can camp, and I have to camp so I can use my vintage trailer.” We think the vintage trailer experience is a lot like street rodding.  Some of our friends enjoy doing both. We belong to South West Street Rods, Tin Can Tourists, and also travel with, Zonie Motors, which now has a trailer division.

This is the second trailer for Annie and Terry, they started with a 13’ 1956 Dalton that they had for a year. They took that to a couple of runs in AZ,  San Diego, and Pismo.

So far this new trailer has been to Big Bear and Newport. This will be the end of the season for this year as Annie and Terry also spend several months a year at their home in St Croix, U.S. V. I.

yellowstone 130In the case of both trailers, Terry wanted the year of the trailer to be the same as his 1956 Chevy pick-up. He has had it four years, and installed dropped spindles with bigger disc brakes, chromed the bumpers and grille, power steering, a Camaro posi rear end, bucket seats, A/C, a Ron Davis aluminum radiator, and a bed cover. The current 327 cu in engine and 700 R4 transmission  was fine for the Dalton, but the Yellowstone just strains it too much. So after returning from the Caribbean,  a 2012 6.0 Chevy engine and six speed 6L90 transmission with all new wiring is going into the pick-up to be ready for next season.

 Posted by at 11:17 am
Oct 072014

Meet Jon and Stacy Schneiderman

We live in Carrabelle, Florida, along the Gulf of Mexico’s “forgotten coast.” Stacy and I recently moved from Bocas del Toro, Panama where we owned and operated a dive shop. We moved to Carrabelle when I was offered the Dive Safety Officer and Marine operations Manager positions at Florida State University.

camperTell us about your trailer and tow vehicle

We own a 1956 16’ Kencraft which Stacy has named “The Mermaid Motel.” Our trailer is towed by a 1994 ambulance which we call the “Glambulance.” We were originally towing our camper with a Jeep Cherokee Laredo, but were looking for something that could carry all of Stacy’s vintage camping stuff. We looked at lots of vintage trucks, but we wanted AC, manual transmission, and preferred enclosed storage. We couldn’t find any trucks that met our needs, so we decided to think outside the box and we bought ourselves an ambulance.

camper and glambulanceWhere did you find it?

We started looking for vintage campers in 2005, but stopped searching in 2007 when we decided we were moving to Central America. When we returned to the U.S. we resumed our search. In December of 2013 we found just what we were looking for, but it was located thousands of miles away in Vancouver, Washington. Ignoring sage advice and common sense, we decided to buy our trailer sight unseen (it was being sold through a reputable vintage car restoration/sales company). We had it shipped and after its 3000 mile journey it arrived better than expected.

When and who did the restoration

We bought our trailer primarily because it was almost entirely original and it was in excellent condition. Stacy did an excellent job with new curtains and upholstery. We are indebted to Tim Heintz who did a fabulous job adding air conditioning, a new screen door, and a rock guard.

camper interiorWhat is unique or interesting about your trailer

We are proud of the original condition of our trailer. It has the original flooring (still in great shape), the original lighting fixtures (both propane and electric), the original pink boomerang countertops, and the original pink appliances.

What do you like about vintage trailers

Stacy and I both love mid-century modern furniture and accessories. Our vintage trailer captures the look and feel of the 50s. While I love the amenities of newer models, I really enjoy the uniqueness of our camper.

Have you been to many rallies and what do you like about them

We received our camper in February of 2014 and have already camped 50+ days in our camper. We took it to upstate New York and have camped at many of the state parks in the Florida panhandle. We just returned from a Glampaholics rally at Brown County State Park in Nashville, Indiana and we’re hooked. Bonding with folks who share a common interest is a blast! We plan on attending many of the upcoming TCT rallies in Florida.

What clubs do you belong to

We belong to TCT, Glampaholics, and a Vintage Kencraft owners’ group.

Can you share an interesting bit of information that most people don’t know about yourself

Stacy and I are avid scuba divers (I’ve been a scuba instructor since 1994) and we love to combine our love of diving with camping. Part of the reason the theme of our camper (The Mermaid Motel) and our tow vehicle (Mermaid Mobile 1) is decorated the way that it is is because we love the underwater world.

 Posted by at 6:51 pm
Oct 072014

Meet Denis and Ginger

Denis & Ginger Blaquiere, we are retired and live in Cape Coral, FL. We lived in Michigan most of our life but also have lived in Southern and Northern California and also North Carolina. Retired in August 2011 after a career in automotive design engineering and contract work for the department of defense. Ginger is a semi-retired pre-school teacher. We have three grown children, 30, 27 and 24 years old and three grandchildren, 5 and 2 years old and a newborn, 6 weeks old.

Tell us about your trailer and tow vehicle

Our trailer is a 1975 Avion 28ft LaGrand. We tow it with a 2005 Dodge Ram Cummins 5.9 litre diesel. We bought the Ram from the original owner in May of 2013 after we had worn out our 1999 gas Suburban. Only got 265,000 miles out of it ! The diesel tows so much better than the Suburban did.

IMG_0100Where did you find your trailer?

The story of how we found our trailer is interesting. A good friend who I worked with in engineering shared an interest in camping with me. He was/is a tenter and has no interest in trailers. However, about 20 years ago when we first started working together he related to me that his mother and father bought some sort of  “aluminum trailer” when they had retired in 1975. The new price back then was about $13,000. They travelled all over the country with it until they were too old to travel anymore. This is where it gets interesting. In 1990 the trailer was parked at my friends “up north” house in Roscommon, Mi. His parents went into an old folks home for the remainder of their years. In 2007 a few years after his parents passed I asked him what happened to the trailer and he said it was still sitting in the woods but some guy offered him $2,000 for it as he wanted to use it as a hunting shack. I asked if Ginger and I could come see it before he decided what he was going to do. Now I had no idea what an Avion was or what it looked like. In April 2007 we took a ride up to Roscommon to check it out. Our first impression was “Oh crap, what a mess”.

IMG_0101_1After looking past the filth we could see a diamond in the rough. It was like a time capseule back to the 70s. I asked John what he would take for it and he said “make me an offer”. I say “$1,800″ and he says “sold”. He really wanted us to have it. After towing it home to Clarkston, Mi. we started the “restoration”. This is the honest to God truth, all we did was spend a long weekend cleaning the bloody thing inside and out. It cleaned up beautifully. I did put new tires and brakes on it since it is almost 40 years old.

What is unique about your trailer?

The thing we like about this rig is that it is built like a tank. It pulls really nice, no sway etc. We do not plan to ever “update” it as we like the original unrestored condition of the rig.

Why vintage?

We like vintage trailers because they are just too “cool”. They are a window to our youth and a different era of craftsmanship. So much better than today’s stick and staple condos on wheels you see going down the road today. We really love the trailers from the 40s and 50s.

Where do you like to camp? Have you attended rallies?

Besides camping in numerous Michigan State Parks we have traveled to Va., N.C., Tenn., Florida Keys and many places in between. We have also attended three gatherings in Milford. In fact we won best reserve in show at the 14th annual gathering that Michelle Bone won best in show with her Avion. We were at Koreshan for 2013 and will be at Cedar Key in Dec. of this year. In Oct. of 2012 we were part of a “Vintage Village” display during the Good Sam Rally at Daytona Motor Speedway. This was at the invite of Al Hesselbart from the RV/MH Hall Of Fame. That was really interesting as we had never seen so many class “A” motorhomes in one place. The Vintage Village had an open house and I believe more people walked thru our rig in two days then had ever been in it in the previous 37 years ! What a zoo ! If all go as planned we will be attending a first ever Vintage Village in Hemet Ca. in late April 2015. It is being held at a “Luxury” RV resort there. We like rallies because they are fun and we always reconnect with old friends, make new friends and love checking out the trailers

What trailer clubs do you belong too?

We belong to Tin Can Tourist (duh) and also a couple of Avion sites on the web. Tin Can Tourists is the only dues paying club we belong to.

Share with us something that not many people know about you

Besides loving old trailers we have been motorcyclists for 40+ years and have made numerous cross country trips. The most recent was to Mich. this last July 2014 for a wedding. We also scuba dive, are avid boaters and used to snow ski.  I am a former Marine Artilleryman and Vietnam Veteran. Besides being a pre-school teacher Ginger has been a professional cake decorator since her High School days. If you need a special Tin Can Tourists themed cake let her know.

Denis & Ginger Blaquiere

 Posted by at 10:30 am
Sep 292009

If you have a friend or belong to a Yahoo Group that might be interested in receiving a complimentary copy of our latest Tin Can Tourists newsletter, have them send me an email requesting the newsletter and I will send one out.

Forrest & Jeri Bone – f23bone@earthlink.net

 Posted by at 7:40 am
Jun 222009
While we attended the Lincoln Highway Conference, we received a call from Ken Faber, TCT member.
The message informed us that Bud Cooper, founder of the Vintage Airstream Club and TCT member, and Hall of Fame inductee had passed away.
Bud is the person that first spoke to me about the Tin Can Tourists. Bud was devoted to the Vintage Airstream Club and TCT.

Rutherford Cooper “Bud”

COOPER – Rutherford “Bud” Cooper, age 84, of Grand Rapids, passed away Wednesday, June 17, 2009. Surviving are his beloved wife of 64 years, Bettye; daughter, D’Anne Smith and son, Richard Cooper. He will be greatly missed by his grandchildren, David Smith, Jeannine Kieleszewski, Michelle Krypel, Emily Cooper and Hannah Cooper. Bud was a mechanical engineer, world traveler, archeologist, photographer, musician, founder of the International Vintage Airstream Club, author, and lecturer. There will be a memorial service at Genesis United Methodist Church, 1601 Galbraith St., Cascade Twp. at 10 a.m. on Saturday, June 20th. Memorial contributions may be made to the church.
Published in Grand Rapids Press on 6/19/2009

 Posted by at 6:30 am
Jan 072009

We have received inquiries about dues renewal, so we thought we should send out a notice regarding payment of the annual dues (May 2009-May 2010).
Membership dues ($20.00) are due at the end of May – during our Annual Gathering.
We will be sending out notices with the spring (March) edition of Tin Can Tales to those whose dues are due.
Dues renewal can be done on line at www.tincantourists.com/membership.php , also.
Forrest & Jeri Bone
Tin Can Tourists
4 High Street, Bradenton, Florida 34208

 Posted by at 4:24 pm