Does anyone have the manual for my vintage trailer? I’m looking for electrical diagrams for my trailer? Where can I buy a manual for my vintage trailer?
These are common refrains in our facebook group and that come in to our email inbox. First off, it amazes me that people ask for a manual when typically no one ever reads the manual in the first place.
Lets start with the fact that most trailer manufacturers didn’t create manuals but what you got with a trailer was a pile of paperwork consisting of owners manuals for each appliance installed in the coach. There probably wasn’t a manual for the coach itself. The appliances aren’t coach brand specific, they used pretty much the same components for every brand.
If a manual was created, most people never open the manual and set them aside and they were eventually lost over time. If you find a manual, treat it like the rarity it is and then help others by publishing it online so others can benefit from it. The Tin Can Tourists offer a wiki for brands and we encourage our members to send us this information to share with others.
They weren’t thinking about the future for when someone wanted to restore a trailer. Most were hoping to survive the first year and many were very small operations with just a few guys in a garage. Hiring a technical writer wasn’t even a consideration. If a manufacturer grew and become really successful, then maybe this became a possibility.
Vintage trailers are very basic systems, that’s why we like them right? They really are pretty simple when it come to electrical, plumbing, propane, lighting, running gear, etc. The concepts and standards haven’t changed for a long, long time. Almost all trailer brands shared the same suppliers for their systems. Because of this, ask your questions to owners of any vintage trailer and you’ll likely to get an answer that will work for your brand.