Regional Representatives

Terry and Michelle Bone: Royal Tin Can Openers

From left to right: Terry Bone, Forrest Bone, Jeri Bone, Michelle Bone

The second generation of the Bone’s are proud represent the Tin Can Tourists. We recently retired and live in Michigan and we camp as much as we can in the surrounding states. We’ve been part of the TCT club since 1998 when the club was renewed and have owned four vintage trailers. Our current trailer is a 1957 Avion Regal and is considered the oldest Avion on the road.

Email: TCT1919@gmail.com

Address: Terry Bone, PO BOX 20820, Ferndale, MI 48220

Representatives Role

The Representatives are asked to develop activities in their geographical region and serve as a sounding board for ideas concerning TCT events and policies. It is our goal to develop a major Gathering in each area. Gathering attendees can then develop additional activities through the Regional Representative.

TCT Representative responsibilities include:

  • Grow the membership within their region and/or state
  • Insure that the TCT guiding principals are adhered to by our members at rallies or in TCT venues: Our guiding principles are clean camps, friendliness among campers, decent behavior and plenty of clean, wholesome entertainment for those in camp.
  • Representatives are role models to our members and set examples for others to follow at our events and in TCT forums
  • Provide guidance and coordination for members and campgrounds wishing to host a TCT gathering
  • Collaborate with other representatives on events and activities
  • Provide consistency in Tin Can Tourists activities, logos, images, etc.
  • Leverage the Tin Can Tourists membership FUNd (a percentage of membership fees) to help rallies and activities with their needs not covered by rally fees.
  • Communicate events to TCT leaders & membership. Leverage the facebook groups, website and newsletters. Submit articles for the website and newsletters. Assistance in managing the facebook groups and other social media.

Our Regional and State Representatives are:

Brandon & Liz Morrison: Mid-States Regional Representatives

Minnesota, Iowa, Missouri, Michigan, Wisconsin, Illinois, Indiana, Ohio, Kentucky, Arkansas.
Email: redbrandon03@gmail.com

My wife Liz and I are very honored and excited to be the new Mid States Representatives for the Tin Can Tourists.  We first became involved with the organization in 2008 when we were in the process of restoring our first trailer, a 61 Avion T27.  It didn’t take long to realize that we had stumbled upon something special, our kind of people!  Since then we have hosted the West Michigan Vintage Gathering for 10 years and also organized the Super Dooper Yooper Looper caravan across Michigan’s Upper Peninsula in 2015.  Along the way we have made some of the best friends anyone could ask for as well as refined our trailer restoration skills.  Currently we are camping in a 51 Lutes Coach built in Kalamazoo mi, and believed to be the first coach built!  Outside of the TCT world Liz and I enjoy all things old, we have a couple classic cars and also enjoy working on our historic home in Muskegon Mi.  We also house junior level hockey players in our home from September to May.  We look forward to continuing to meet new people through this organization and are here to help any of our Mid States Tincanners anyway we can!

Rob & Lrae Wintercorn – Arkansas State Representatives

Email: scion4rob@gmail.com

Hello my name is Rob and my wife Lrae are so stoked with the honor of helping represent the Arkansas area of Tin Can Tourists! We have been married 34 years with 4 grown kids all now doing the life thing on their own. One newly married in the Marine Corps. Soon to get out and join us in the Northwest Arkansas area. Our camping roots are deep with a camp out in our early dating days, to my kids growing up with vacations in tents or in our 65 Volkswagen Sundial camper.  As they got too big for that our 73 Starcraft pop up. We had camp outs in the backyard or our favorite regular state park Devils den.  I picked up a 68 Serro Scotty Gaucho as a project for Lrae and I to get back into camping back in 2013 and we’ve been joining in all the ones in the area we can as life allows since finished in 2014. I also run a page called Rats and Rods with camper trailers on Facebook.  A great site for car people to kick the tires on the vintage trailer idea. We have also been hosting an event for the past 3 years called the Ozark Vintage Trailer Rally in Eureka Springs. The town loves us and we have a great time! We hope to help share the love and fun of this great club and hobby. Also to help others plan and put on events. Thanks you so much for the privilege of this position! Rob & Lrae Wintercorn. 

Ron Baumgarten and Shannon Rozell – Michigan State Representatives:
41281

Email: rcb1020@gmail.com

We are very pleased to announce the addition of Ron Baumgarten and Shannon Rozell as the state representatives of Michigan. They bring a wealth of knowledge and experience to the leadership group. TCT has been fortunate to have a group of regional and state representatives that are friendly, energetic, and enthusiastic. Ron and Shannon have been great supporters of TCT and will be a valuable addition to the leadership group. They will be working closely with Terry Bone, the mid-states representative, assisting current event hosts and the development of additional TCT events in Michigan.

David Coon and Harry James – Northeast Regional Representative:

New York, Maine, Massachusetts, Connecticut, Delaware, Washington DC, Maryland, Pennsylvania, Vermont, New Hampshire, Rhode Island and New Jersey
David’s Email: fairviewfarm@frontier.com

Harry’s email: jameshywood7890@roadrunner.com

David Coon – On the personal side. We have been married for 46 years. We reside in Fairport, NY, just east of Rochester. We have one son who is married and has 2 daughters. Jan is a retired Nurse. I still work as a sales mgr. for a Wealth Management firm. We have been involved in the collector car hobby for many years. Owning a vintage trailer seemed like a natural extension of the hobby. We purchased a Winnebago trailer in 2008. With some help from Bill and Denise Fletcher we were able to make it Road and camping worthy. We attended the first NE Rally and been to every one. We also attending the Spring Rally at Camp Dearborn twice. We have really enjoyed all the events. Getting there and back with a vintage car adds to the fun. We have a new circle of friends from our camping adventures.

Harry James – I have lived in the Boston Hills, a piece of the South Towns of Western New York with my wife Nancy for the past 24 years. Our interest in vintage trailers began with a trip to Bill and Denise Fletcher’s in Trumansburg New York to check out his selection of slightly used trailers. We bought our new to us, 1965 Avion H-24 travel trailer from Bill the next week. Most of our camping trips are to the Adirondack mountains and their many state camp grounds. We look forward to working with co-representative Dave Coon in growing the annual North-East rally held at Sampson State park.

Watt “Orbie” Mungall – Northwest Regional Representative:

Washington, Oregon, Idaho, Montana, Wyoming, Alaska, North Dakota, South Dakota, Nebraska, Utah
Email: wattmungall@gmail.com or call 435-730-3840
Watt grew up in the Blue Ridge Mts. of South Carolina. He spent 30 years working at various jobs associated with the oil and gas industry, living in 38 different states during his career. After retirement, he moved to Willard Utah, which is 50 miles north of Salt Lake City. In 2000 Watt and his wife, Mary Jane, decided to find a tear drop, but ended up buying a 1947 Boles Aero . Their first trip in 2001 took them to Laughlin, NV, where we met Don and Jeanette Boles who autographed the “Shinny Hinny” in the closet door. The bug had bitten and they have ended up with the following: 1947 Boles Aero; 1951 Boles Aero; 1951 Silver Streak; 1965 Barth; 1951 Home built; and the last is a 1947 Boles Aero, that is final stages of restoration. Over the years ,Watt took note that his area was the, “hole of the donut”, having no rally’s that were anywhere close, therefore he decided it was time to have one. Check the Rally listing for Watts Up-By the Bay – Willard, Utah.

Staci Bloomer – Oregon State Representative:

Email: Oregontct@gmail.com

Hello! My name is Staci Bloomer and I reside in the beautiful state of Oregon with my handsome husband, Tim Dunks, our amazing son, Brody and our fur baby (aka trailer security) Willy. Our family has a love of all things vintage. We have attended Hot August Nights in Reno, NV for many years. It has become a reunion of sorts as we converge as a family, along with our parents, aunts and uncles and friends to “ooh and ahh” over the eye candy. Two years ago, while cruising Facebook, I came across a post for Trailerfest. It was only an hour away (we lived in Napa, CA at the time) and the theme was Christmas in the Trailer Park. While we were still on the hunt for our first trailer, I simply could not pass this up. It encompassed all of my favorite things; vintage trailers, Christmas décor, ugly sweaters, camping and family! We booked a cabin, loaded up in our 1956 Chevy 210 Wagon and headed to Lodi. GAME OVER! We purchased and began work on our 1970 Ideal soon after. My husband and I both work full time, so we spent weekends and other free time working on “The Brat Pack.”

During the restoration, our family made the decision to move home to Oregon. Shortly after, we completed (is it ever really complete?) restoration and headed to Brooks, OR for our first rally, in the trailer. I was literally applying decals and other finishing touches at the rally! My husband asked me to kick him if he ever said he wanted to restore another vintage trailer. Four trailers later…his legs are still intact! We are now the proud owners of a 1970 Ideal, 1958 Ideal, 1967 Shasta and an early 1960’s Conway Caravan out of the UK. We have also committed (and are super excited) to help restore a 1951 Spartanette that my parents purchased after accompanying us to Trailerfest the last two years. In addition to growing our fleet of vintage trailers, we met some of the best friends a girl could ask for! (You know who you are!)

It is safe to say, we are HOOKED and we love every minute of it. Please feel free to reach out to us. If we don’t know the answer, we will help you find it. We are SO excited and honored to represent Tin Can Tourists in our home state.

Rene’ Perret – Washington State Representative:

Email: downriver11@yahoo.com

Hello all.  My name is Rene’ Perret, my handsome guy, Jeremy Ralston, and I live in SW Washington.  Together we have 5 adult children, 1 adorable grandbaby, and 1 fur baby.  We started our vintage trailer addiction with a 1955 Aloha we found on Craigslist in 2012.  “Tin Lizzy” was restored right in our carport, we signed up for our first rally, Mt. Baker Vintage Trailer Rally and from there we’ve been taking BIG gulps of the Vintage Trailer Kool-Aid ever since.  I joined Sisters on the Fly, started an Aloha Facebook page with a friend and began making connections with some wonderful people.  6 years later we now host the Mt. Baker Rally, largest vintage trailer gathering in the NW.  We have 2 personal trailers we currently use, a 1955 Aloha and 1956 Jewel.  Our 1953 Nashua is next on our list for restoration.  We own 20 trailers ranging from 1942-1962, and we started a business Down River Vintage Trailer Restoration Down River Vintage Trailer Restoration. We live in a floating home on the river.  We love this lifestyle and attend approximately 12 rally’s a year.  We have made the best friendships that we would not trade for anything.  We are fully embracing this honor to represent Tin Can Tourist in Washington State and can’t wait to make more amazing connections in the Vintage Trailer world.

Tim Heintz – Southeast Regional Representative:

West Virginia, Virginia, Tennessee, North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia, Florida, Alabama, Mississippi, Louisiana
Email: TCT.Heintz@gmail.com
Heintz Designs Vintage Trailer Restorations

Heintz Designs’ Vintage Restoration Team grew from the passion & hobby of its founder, Tim Heintz. For over 20 years Tim has been collecting and restoring vintage rv/trailer coaches and displaying them at various vintage rv shows and museums. Because of our love of vintage trailers Heintz Designs is committed to providing its clients with the same quality restoration that we would provide for a trailer in our own vintage collection. We enjoy and understand the excitement that is felt by a new vintage trailer owner but we also respect and appreciate the love and pride possessed by vintage trailer owners who have had their trailers for many years.

For over 10 years Tim has served as the Southeastern Representative of the Tin Can Tourists, an international, vintage rv & trailer coach club

Denis and Ginger Blaquiere: Florida State Representatives

Email: denblaq@gmail.com

Hello, my name is Denis Blaquiere. My wife Ginger and I are originally from Michigan although we have lived in both Southern and Northern California. I spent my working career in Michigan as a design engineer in the automotive industry. Ginger was a pre-school teacher and still substitutes from time to time. We are now retired and live in Cape Coral Florida. We have been life long campers, starting out with tents during cross country motorcycle trips when we were a lot younger. During our child raising years we did quite a bit of camping, mostly in tents. After the kids moved out we finally got a camper. Our kids have not forgiven us for that! We bought our 1975 Avion in 2007. It belonged to a coworker of mine, his dad bought it new in 1975 and used it until they could no longer travel. It is original unrestored. We discovered TCT shortly after acquiring the trailer and attended our first Gathering in May of 2008. To our surprise our trailer won best reserve of show!

During the last eleven years we have attended quite a few TCT events, too many to mention. In 2016 we embarked on a three month,12,000 mile road trip out west and represented TCT at a vintage trailer show in Hemet Ca. While we love all the cool trailers the best thing about TCT is all the new friends we have made along the way. Lets go camping!

Karen Campbell – Southwest Regional Representative:

Texas, Kansas, Oklahoma, New Mexico, Arizona, Nevada, Colorado, Hawaii and California
Email: karencampbellwithrt66@hotmail.com

My trailer interest or addiction it seems was started in 2002, when we bought a graffiti-ed, abandon, little 1956 Mobil Scout from our local junk yard. After removing all the spray paint, cleaning rats nests and spider webs, we towed it behind our 1957 Ford to a couple car shows. The plan was, it was just a cool old accessory to the car, we never thought about camping in it. Well, several friends followed suite thinking it was fun and found their own canned hams, to match up to their classic cars. As things happen, before long my husband and I were repairing and decorated the interior-thinking lets go camping in the tiny trailer.

About this time, we co started the Southwest Vintage Camper Association, finding more trailer enthusiast, camping and hosting several events each year. Its been a great hobby, met lots of wonderful people and over the course of this adventure we have had over 40 trailers. Most memorable and spectacular was our 1948 Aero Flite.

Now with all this vintage knowledge and appreciation, Kenny and I travel helping new reps and seeing our country in a newer 24′ class C motor-home. You will know our coach by the brass TCT emblem proudly affixed along the entry door. Thanks for having me as your SW representative. Karen Campbell

Gail Leggett – Arizona State Representative

Email: ggleggett@hotmail.com

I live on an acre in the foothills of Oro Valley (Tucson), Arizona with my husband, 2 dogs, and 2 horses. I had attended the University of New Mexico and continued to make regular visits back there while raising my children. In those days, we were still tent camping and shaking our shoes to check for scorpions.

My interest in vintage trailers began in 1994 when I started camping with my husband up in the Yellowstone area of Montana for the summers. Tents were not allowed due to the danger of bears so I began to look for a small trailer and bought a 1958 Corvette (trailer) from a neighbor. We lived in it for two summers before upgrading to our current 18’ 1958 Kenskill- which, yes, we found in a barn when attending a party at a local ranch. I loved the wood interior of the trailers and bought them for their timeless appeal.

When vintage trailers became popular, I became involved with various vintage trailer groups and attended a number of rallies. It was back in New Mexico at a Taos rally that I first met Karen Campbell, now the Southwest Representative for Tin Can Tourists.

Tim Viall – California State Representative

Email: tviall@msn.com

Tim and Susan Viall have been retired for five years and have traveled extensively through the US and Canada with two Serro Scotty trailers, a ’58 Scotty teardrop and a ’64 Scotty Sportsman (just rebuilt from the frame up). Their first vintage trailer, acquired 11 years ago, was a Kit Kamper teardrop, with which they toured the west. In retirement, Tim has a “light career” as a travel writer/photographer, writing a weekly travel column and travel blog for the Stockton Record newspaper (http://blogs.esanjoaquin.com/valleytravel). Tim’s business career included 20 years managing non-profit organizations, including  the Emergency Food Bank of Stockton/San Joaquin. His earlier career spanned 21 years in daily newspapers with The Stockton Record, The Toledo Blade, OH, the Peninsula Times Tribune, Palo Alto, CA, Spokesman-Review, Spokane, WA, and the Sacramento Bee. Susan worked as an accountant for a homeowners management company for well over 20 years. The Vialls reside in Stockton, CA, and have two daughters and three grandchildren, all in the greater Sacramento area. Tim and Susan are delighted to be representing Tin Can Tourists in California, and are planning to take in TCT and vintage trailer events in this state and the west. They would love to stage a TCT Rally, perhaps in the Lake Tahoe area in the fall. Contact Tim at tviall@msn.com, or phone (209) 969-3875.

Jean Bundschuh – Colorado State Representative

Email: ColoradoTincanners@gmail.com

My name is Jean Bundschuh, and I have been camping since I was 6 months old. The fascination with my grandparent’s 1960’s Coastline camper trailer as my playhouse in their driveway, had me lured from a young age. My grandparents had instilled the love of travel and camping and family togetherness. Once I grew up, and the family trailer was no longer, I yearned for one of my own. I was quickly infected with a disease called Aluminitis and had to have more. I have owned a handful in the last 5 years. My first was an unidentified one that I quickly learned was above my skill set. My second was a 1966 Avion 25M that we loved as a family and took to Yellowstone to enjoy. The 1954 Boles Aero near original MiraMar, was my prize however I had to sell her to purchase a home. Currently I own 2 1961 trailers; one a prototype Compak Keuka and the second a Streamline Baron. I am also on a few year project of renovating a 1947 Boles Aero for my mother. Did I mention it is a disease?

I am looking forward to making many more camping friends in the near future and camping with some awesome Colorado folks.

Rose Larson – Oklahoma State Representative

Email: roselarson@att.net

Hello, I’m Rose Larson. My husband and I collect and restore vintage campers. Our collection spans 5 decades of campers (30’s-70’s) and I love every single one of them! I actually closed my Real Estate Brokerage and retired at 55 to spend more time restoring and decorating them and to have more time to camp with fellow vintage camper enthusiasts. We attend approx 12 rallies a year in Oklahoma, Colorado and Texas and I’m excited at the opportunity to represent TCT here in my home State of Oklahoma where spectacular camping opportunities abound. (See pic).
Feel free to contact me with any questions at all.

Teresa Baldwin – Texas State Representative

Email: teresabaldwin1515@gmail.com

My name is Teresa Baldwin and I love vintage campers. I was bitten by the bug a few years back. I started out referbushing old farm houses when I lived in Michigan. I moved to Texas in 1996. When I was able to quit working full time, I picked up our first camper. It was almost 6 hours away. It’s funny now, but not then, that during the drive home the lower front of the camper started to unhook from the sides when we were about half way to the house. Thank goodness for duct tape, it really came in handy. LOL! I rebuilt the front and back of the camper. I have restored aapproximately 14 campers since then. I currently have 3 campers and 2 of them are vintage. A 1955 Dalton Apache that I rebuilt from the frame up and a 1954 canned ham whose identification is unknown. My passions are photography, restoring /refurbushing vintage campers and the love of animals. Though I haven’t been a member of the TCT group for very long, I am so very proud to be your TCT state representative for Texas. I hope you will be able to join us for one of our rally’s! See you soon.

Rick Myer, Eastern Canada

econolinebvan@gmail.com

Lexie Kensington & Charon Henning: TCT Representatives at Large:

lexicaligari@gmail.com
Lexie Kensington and Charon (Say it: Karen) Henning met in the Fall of 2003 as fellow Sword Swallowers working thrill shows and carnival lots all over the country. It was in this gypsy like life-style that they fell in love with each other and the joys of being trailerites. Lexie is a former commercial photographer, who ran away with the circus when serving the corporate advertising game lost ground to the internet, and Charon is a much sought after Tattoo Artist working a circuit of high end tattoo studios around the country. She hold a BA from Prince George’s Community College and a BA from George Mason University in Fairfax VA. Alex has BA from Butler University In Indianapolis, and a BMS in Mortuary Science from the Cincinnati College of Mortuary Science. Together they have been full timing in a 1966 Airstream since 1 October 2009 and will complete a second 1966 Airstream this fall. They have been members since 2002 and have performed their Comedy Thrill Show at several TCT functions in Florida and Michigan. They hold and embrace the traditions, philosophy, and heritage of the Tin Can Tourists as describe in David Thornberg’s “Galloping Bungalows” and as experienced around campfires, on highways and anywhere travelers seek fun, and adventure. The More We Get Together, The Happier We’ll Be.

Hunt Jones (Susan) – TCT Representative at Large

  • Mountain Lakes NJ
  • Braden Castle Park FL
  • Anywhere in the lower 48’s
  • Usually found: under the hood
  • TCT Member since 2001
  • Towing vintage with vintage since 1997 (13K miles/year)
  • Motto #1: “Noise to some, Music to others” (exhaust note)
  • Motto #2: “Never pass by a beater tavern”

Email: hhcjones@att.net

Dal Smilie – TCT Representative at Large


My Father and his parents spent a lot of WWII living in areas where there were large war construction projects. My Grandfather figured bids and supervised the plumbing and heating aspects of those jobs. For a while he ran the entire construction project at Oak Ridge, TN which was part of the Manhattan Project. My Father ran blueprints for the job as a Summer job during college. Of course it was all top secret. Still have his ration book. I came along after that war but they still had the trailer and used it as he supervised the construction of power plants and such. By the early ’70s they spent part of their retirement in a Holiday Rambler in Ft Myers. My maternal Grandmother spent a good bit of time in her Holiday Rambler in Florida also. I camped as a kid in Boy Scouts and in various forts we had built on open lots in the neighborhood. We did a lot of tent, car and motorcycle/tent camping over time. Now its in our 1949 Curtis Wright Clipper or 1972 Cayo Motovator. No meal tastes better than those you make or share while camping. For quite a while I had an aversion to pulling a trailer. We tried to haul our racebikes for years in the back of a truck or van to avoid backing, parking and so on. But while attending a large vintage motorcycle meet in Del Mar, CA I saw a group of about five couples who not only had their vintage motorcycles but also vintage travel trailers and vintage tow rigs. And they all looked happy, sitting in their vintage lawn chairs. I’ve kept in touch with Vince Martinico who was one of those who got us started with vintage trailers. We started looking and found our 1949 Model 5 Curtis Wright Clipper about eighteen years ago. Sitting out in the desert outside of Palm Desert, CA. It was painted green, had a swamp cooler on top, door off, some windows out, with 1961 tags. The owner was ready to deal and we packed the bearings, bought tires and rigged lights and towed it home. We have probably towed it about 40,000 miles since then. We also have a 1972 Cayo Motovator. That is a Class C RV built on a Dodge van chassis with only 21,000 miles on it. The Cayo family had built Avion until they sold it in 1971. The new company did not want to build their classic pickup campers so they continued those under the “Cayo” name. Then they built a larger version and called it the Motovator. We have serial #5. This unit was built a couple of weeks before I went to Viet Nam in 1971 and while the Cayo seems new, going to Viet Nam seems like a long time ago to me. The dogs and us probably camp about 45 nights a year in our vintage rigs. I currently work part time with homeless veterans in Helena, MT. A rewarding retirement job where I have learned a lot. Jane has taken a job running the Deschutes County Health Department in Bend, OR so I commute back and forth. We hosted the TCT Fiddler’s Picnic Vintage Rally on the Mercier Ranch South of Livingston, MT the last two years. In August of 2015 we will host the TCT Bend Classic Vintage Trailer Rally in Bend, OR (come on over to it!) The entire proceeds of each rally were contributions to either the group that put on the Fiddlers Picnic itself, an acoustic roots music jam, or this year to the J Bar J Youth Ranch where the rally will be held. Vintage camping is great fun. Being at a rally, volunteering at or hosting one is even more fun. Even more fun is towing with a period tow vehicle. You can’t get out of a gas station or into a campground without getting swarmed by interested folks, a great way to spread the vintage camping message. We found ourselves utilizing the Tin Can Tourist site quite a bit. After awhile it just seemed wrong being free riders on the site and we joined eight or so years ago to help support this great organization they have breathed new life into. Since the Curtis was designed and built by Wally Byam (and Curtis Wright) who is the man behind Airstream we also belong to the Vintage Airstream Club. And the Rolling Oldies Vintage Trailer group in Oregon. Great organizations, all.
Email: dalsmilie@aol.com

TCT International Representatives

Trish Martin – Australia

My husband Dave and I are musicians and have a duo called “Leather and Lace”, Dave is a cabinet maker and works for the local shire council, we have three daughters aged 15, 13 and 9 and live in an old Hotel in country Victoria, Australia. We are renovating the old pub and it isn’t open for business and hasn’t been for some time, it is 140 years of age.
I have always had a love for caravans and currently have three old ones: 1970 Travel Home DeLuxe, an old English Fairholme Romeo from the 1950’s and the other a Hawthorn built in Hawthorn Melbourne in the 1940’s. A few others have came to us and been sold on to other enthusiasts who proudly tow them behind their vintage vehicles. I would love to give your members an Australian perspective and show you vintage caravans that I come across, we live in a very beautiful and unspoiled area of the country and I always feel proud to share that with others. I feel honored to be a representative for Australia.
Email: sandford@netspace.net.au

René Leenders – Netherlands

My name is René Leenders, 48 years old, father of 2 beautiful sons and known in this part of the world as Mr. Airstream. Back in 1999 I owned a catering- and event business who was looking for something special to promote my company. I ended up with the Tin Can Trailers as I thought back then that every US Travel trailer looked like that. It became quite a journey trying to find out how to import one of those shiny trailers and to become familiar with the huge differences between the US spec travel trailers and the European ones. Internet was not as well spread as it is today. In fact the TCT site was one of the few providing some information. The Airstream plant did not even have a website back then.
To share my experience with the rest of the world I started a small website called www.airstream-holland.nl and that is how I became “famous” in the world of aluminum travel trailers here. I imported and converted a lot of Vintage trailers and started my own business in renting them out. In 2008 I was then approached by Airstream to become an official dealer for their European spec Airstream models. The Rental & Vintage business was then broadened to what it is today with www.airstreamprofessionals.com . Our client base is continental Europe with clients from The Netherlands, Belgium, Germany, France, Denmark, Switzerland and Liechtenstein. We learned this business the “trial and error” way and with an 11 year experience we know our ways.
The business does not only include Airstream. We also serve other brands provided they give the Tin Can feeling or add something to the camping experience not available in Europe. We are selling teardrop trailers of our own brand FunTear and will soon release the FunTear Retro – a new 1950’s inspired aluminum travel trailer. Our showroom has been given the name “American Caravan Center”. The word caravan in the UK and Europe means travel trailer (not what it means in the US)
The install base of Tin Cans in the Benelux has now come to a point of almost 300 trailers. I guess now is the time to start a local unit of TCT. There is going to be a rally from the UK via Belgium to The Netherlands on June 17 expected to be the largest one of all so far with 50 participants.
Email: r.g@leenders-online.nl
Website: http://www.airstream-holland.nl/

Hiroshi Okamoto; Japan Representative

Website: http://www.airstreamcafe.jp/

Click here to watch Hiroshi’s airstream conversion

Forrest and Jeri Bone: Retired Royal Exalted Tin Can Opener and Royal Exalted First Lady

Email: tincantourists@gmail.com

Identifying an unknown trailer

Trailer Identification

Click here for information on find a Vintage Trailer VIN or Serial Number 

We get lots of questions around helping people identify a trailer they just bought or are thinking of buying. Here are some suggestions to identify your trailer.

First off, you need to use Google. If you can’t find a reference to your trailer on Google, then you probably have a trailer that isn’t a very popular brand. All of the popular brands have websites, user groups, yahoo groups, or forums of some such. This is because there is a demand for information because of their popularity and value. This doesn’t mean you won’t be able to find information, it will mean that you have a lot more work to do on our own. It doesn’t mean your trailer isn’t valuable, you might have a very rare trailer. But it does mean that finding documentation, floor plans, original equipment, parts, knowledgeable resources, etc is going to be difficult if not impossible.

Bring your trailer to a vintage trailer rally, there are lots of experts at these rallies that don’t leverage the internet but might be able to recognize or help you identify your trailer.

The Tin Can Tourists Facebook Group is very active and helping people identify and learn about their trailers.

A good resource of trailer information is the RV/MH Museum http://www.rvmhhalloffame.org/ – maybe if you send them pictures and details, they might have an idea.

Here is the best resource for getting copies of vintage trailer magazines, ads, and information: http://www.allmanufacturedhomes.com – Juergen Eichermueller (eichermueller@baunetz.de) – The definitive independent vintage recreational vehicle archive source!

Serial numbers are frequently found on the tongue rail on the passenger side. (Usually on top, but may be on the drivers side or the side of the rail). Use paint remover or sand lightly to uncover the numbers. The first two digits may be letters that identify your make, followed by the year, length and number of production. Example: Serial number (or VIN number): MR 57 25 123 is a Monterey, 1957, 25′ number 123.

Here is a record of trailer names and the abbreviation you may find on an old title or registration:http://www.oregon.gov/ODOT/DMV/docs/VTRH/Chapter_N.pdf?ga=t

A wood screen door or free-standing stove often mean you have a pre-1960 trailer.

Teardrop wheel wells may be a Serro Scotty. Compare it to pictures here: http://www.serroscottycamperenthusiasts.com/

What to look for to help you Identify a trailer

It’s difficult to identify a vintage camper that has faded paint and missing logos. With so many manufacturers making very similar trailers, what are some of the key elements to look for and document before going on your hunt to identify your vintage trailer?

  • First off, look at the trailers overall shape. Campers were made in several different body shapes
    • Unique
    • Fiberglass Egg
    • Motor homes
    • Slide Ins
    • Square/Angular
    • Canned Ham
    • Teardrop
    • Bread loaf
    • Aircraft/Steamlined
    • Pop-up
  • Determine the length
    • The length of the trailer starts at the tip of the tongue in the front and goes to the furthest point in the back (usually the bumper)
  • What is the Skin of the trailer made off?
    • Wood
    • Aluminum
      • Anodized
      • Polished
      • Quilted or horizontal patterns
    • Fiberglass
  • Types of Graphics
    • Are there designs in the paint
    • Is the logo incorporated in the paint
  • Badges and Logos
    • Look for brand specific medal badges
    • Painted on or affixed logos in the front, back, sides or event in cabinetry
  • Wheel wells
    • Are they uniquely shaped
    • What sized tires and rims
    • Does it have hub caps
  • Windows
    • Wrap around front windows
    • Jalousie
    • Port hole
    • Triangular
  • Door handles and knobs or wooden screens
  • Interior
    • Material
    • Color Schemes
    • Layouts
    • Cabinets
    • Fixtures
  • Tail lights and Running Lights

Homemade Trailers by Tim Heintz

With all the people that ask about Trailer identification, many have noticed there are a lot that are identified as ‘Home-Made’ Trailers. You have to remember that even the best looking and well built trailers from the 1920’s-1950’s were often ‘Home-Made’ or at least kit trailers with no official ‘brand name’. While commercially built trailers had to be completely built in a factory in less than a day, some companies building as many as 6-15 completed trailer per day, and the average handy man building his own trailer in the back yard could spend weeks or even months on his custom build! So yes many of the home-made trailers of past were actually built much better and stylish than the factory built trailers. Most of these home-made trailers were built by craftsman in the airplane, engineering, bridge construction, etc… line of trade work so they knew what they were doing! But even with the so called ‘kit’ or boxed trailers you would find a lot of customizing by the owner/builder/buyer. Also take in account that with literally 1000+ official trailer brands in the 1930’s alone, the statistics back then was that 66% of all trailers on the road during that time were Home-Made trailers! That is a lot of ‘no name’ trailers!

Here we have detailed photos (1949) of such a ‘boxed’ trailer that one could order. This was a complete kit where most companies that offered boxed or kit trailers did not supply such parts as the main frame, or siding, or even upholstery/curtains….but this one did offer everything. Even some of the first Airstreams were sold as boxed kits just like this, or you could just buy the Airstream plans and supply your own parts!

Categories
Rallies Southeast Region Uncategorized

Tin Can Tourists’ 2015 Chautauqua Exhibit

Tin Can Tourists’ 2015 Chautauqua Exhibit

January 25, 2015

DeFuniak Springs, FL

After a good nights’ rest, I was happy to awake to a much warmer and sunny morning! I fixed the coffee for the morning and set out all the donuts I had for the members out under my awning. All the other members started to get up and about ready for the last day of open house. The crowds were rather slow most of the morning, which is typical at the event every Sunday but with one last Civil War Re-enactment after lunch the crowds would start growing as that time grew near.

We took advantage of the slow time to induct our new TCT members, and we had quite a few first timers at this event!!!

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By 10am things were really slowing down and since we had heard from a visitor yesterday about a real old trailer just down the road on some property for sale Tommy was ready to get out and go for a drive! So we jumped in the truck to try and find this ‘old’ trailer. We just knew it would likely end up a late 70’s or newer trailer just like so many other fruitless excursions. After driving a short distance there it was! A 1952 Royal Spartanette just off the road next to an old house that was falling in. There was a real estate sign right between the house and trailer. The trailer has likely seen the last of its pulling days but there are still some great pars on the exterior and it appears to have all the original pieces inside the trailer, although the rear bedroom and front living room is trashed the center kitchen and bathroom appeared to be all original through the window. We may just have to research the real estate agent to find out about parting this trailer out before it all ends up in a dumpster once the acreage sells.

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After driving around a little more and finding a few other trailers we decided to head back to our trailers. I decided it was finally time for me to fix my truck that was overheating all the way up to the event. I assumed it was a pretty simple fix of changing out the clutch fan…..since I already changed the water pump, radiator cap, water lines, and thermostat just this week! Changing the clutch fan was not as simple of a fix as I forgot to put my tool box in the truck. Tommy drove me around town to get the tools and the parts I needed to fix my truck. Thankfully with such a slow show day I was able to focus all my time on getting the truck fixed before the event was over this afternoon.

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About 4 hours later I was finally done with changing the clutch fan on the truck. Just in time to start packing up the trailer and getting ready to head home. Everyone was walking around and saying their good byes, and started to pack up and hooking up their trailers. We all had to hook up one at a time as the first in line would have to pull out before the next trailer could hook up. Thankfully everyone timed it just right and as one trailer would pull out the next was just ready to hook up and move forward. I was one of the last to hook up and just pulled forward a bit to wait for Jim and Donna to get hooked up and ready to pull out as we were going to follow each other as we live in the same town.

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By 5pm we were ready to hit the road! I was in front and Jim and Donna were behind with their 1958 Yellowstone. As my luck would have it, my truck started to overheat AGAIN only about 15 miles down the road. I called Jim on his phone and told them to drive on, as I figured it was only the fact that there may have been air in the radiator and it would just need some more water put in it once it cooled down. So I pulled off the side of the road and waited for the truck to cool down a bit, added water to the radiator and hit the road once again. Another 10 miles down the road and here we go again! Thankfully this time I made it to a gas station, but as my luck goes there was no water hose or place to get water at the gas station. So I parked the truck and walked to all four corners in this little one red light town looking for water….nothing at the closed car wash, but there was a small gas station on the other corner with a long water hose out back. So I walked back to the truck which had cooled down enough to cross the street and pulled behind the gas station into the grass field. I filled the truck up with water as well as the extra jugs I had in the back of the truck and the onboard water tank in the trailer that was empty from this weekend’s camping. I felt much better having a full water tank on the trailer, there is very little between this last little town and home! Onward again! Once on the road I slowly watched the truck heat back up, made it about 12 miles and had to pull over, as I suspected in the middle of NOWHERE! Thankfully I had more than enough water to refill the radiator which was not really leaking water, just replacing what was boiling out/over flowing. By this time I realized it was going to take forever, so I called my father and told him to call a couple of our employees and get the other truck and head my way. I knew I could likely make it to the next town where there was a place I could park and have the guys take the trailer to our shop and my father and I could figure out a way to get the truck home. After making that call the truck was cool enough to hit the road again and I made it to the next little town of Bruce FL were the truck was overheating again and it was just starting to get dark, but I decided to make one more last ‘trip’ once the truck cooled down and I refilled it again I decided to drive the short 6 miles trip, over a long bridge to the little town of Ebro where there was a good size truck stop with plenty of lights and space to hook the trailer up to the other truck once they arrived. So ONE MORE TIME I hit the road and made it to the little town (more of a four way stop!) of Ebro FL. Finally I was a little over halfway home, so I parked the truck and went inside the truck stop to grab a bite to eat at the Subway store inside. By the time I finished eating the guys pulled in the truck stop. We looked at my truck for a while and could only determine that the radiator must be clogged enough to overheat the truck after running for about 10 miles. So we hooked up the trailer to the other truck and my father and I jumped into my truck to see if we could get it the rest of the 25 miles home. Amazingly luck was on our side and without the trailer in tow my truck made it all the way home without overheating, it did get warmer than it should, but not enough the actually over heat. I finally pulled into the driveway by 730 pm!!! WHAT A TRIP!

Tim Heintz

Tin Can Tourists’ Southeastern Representative

1953 Viking Coach

Categories
photos Rallies Southeast Region Uncategorized

Tin Can Tourists’ 2015 Chautauqua Exhibit

Tin Can Tourists’ 2015 Chautauqua Exhibit

January 24, 2015

DeFuniak Springs, FL

Today is a promise of much a bit warmer weather, but awoke to 30 degrees when it was only forecasted to reach 38 so it is not looking good so far! I walked down to St Agatha’s Church once again for a hot breakfast and the rest of our group was not far behind me. We all enjoyed our hot to order breakfast in a warm setting. After breakfast it was time to head back to our trailers and get ready for the public to come tour our rigs. Thankfully the weather was starting to clear up a bit and the threat of rain was moving on out, but there was still a cool breeze going on making it feel a little cold if you were not right in the sun.

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There were many great vendors offering everything from drinks, BBQ, frontier cooked meals, Dutch oven cooked food, and of course more conventional stuff like deep fired Oreos, Twinkies, and Funnel Cakes!!!!

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There were many more people out today to view the trailers, and we kept a steady flow throughout most the day. By lunch the crowds slacked a little but likely due to lunch time as well as the Civil War re-enactment that was scheduled across the lake. After lunch the crowds picked back up, especially since most people had to walk right by the trailers on their way back from the re-enactment.  Later in the day we were surprised by this great looking 1959 Ideal trailer that drove by to meet all the other TCT members and to see our trailers that were on display, of course we all wanted to see their trailer!

 

 

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Finally by late afternoon the weather had warmed up a bit and all the hit or miss rain mist was over. After the event was over for the day we all gathered by the fire and had a fun telling all kinds of stories! I decided to hit he bed around 9pm as it had been a long day, but many of the other members sat around and used up the last of our large stock of fire wood well past 11pm!

Tim Heintz

Tin Can Tourists’ Southeastern Representative

1953 Viking Coach

 

Categories
Rallies Southeast Region

Tin Can Tourists’ 2015 Chautauqua Exhibit

Tin Can Tourists’ 2015 Chautauqua Exhibit

January 23, 2015

DeFuniak Springs, FL

Woke up not long after midnight to the sound of rain on the roof of the trailer and it wasn’t long before it was really coming down hard! I looked outside to make sure the awning was still standing strong and after a quick leak check of all the windows and roof vent I jumped back into bed(thankfully no leaks! This is the first hard rain this trailer has ever seen since being restored so I was a little nervous). There is no better sound to sleep to than falling rain on the roof of a vintage trailer.

Around 4 am I woke up again as the rain was really coming down now! In fact the street all our trailers are set up on looked like a river when I took a look out the window. No strong winds or storms, just a hard strong rain or as a good friend calls ‘A Toad-Strangler’ (Google it). After one last leak check I decided to go back to sleep. Once again I awoke around 530am to the sound of my awning collapsing a little from all the heavy rain, seemed one of my stakes pulled up from the soaked ground and was allowing the awning to collect a lot of water. Thankfully the rain was slacking off a little so I put on my shoes and coat to head out and do battle with the rain and awning. Got the awning back up and slanted it quite a bit to allow the water to flow off. By now I was wide awake and decided to just stay up and get on the computer for a while since breakfast started at 7am.

As 7am approached I got dressed and headed down to St. Agatha’s Church who was cooking a hot made to order breakfast for all our members (will do it again tomorrow). They have 4 different choices that rival Cracker Barrel! I enjoyed the 2 eggs (poached) with 4 slices of Bacon, 4 pieces of Toast, a huge pile of home fries, and orange juice. Most of the other TCTers followed shortly behind me and we all enjoyed a hot breakfast together.

After Breakfast the weather was clearing up a little and we went back to our trailers to set up for the open house. Even with a light rain there were quite a few people out and about to tour the trailers. Most of the day was hit or miss with the rain and the crowds were pretty good for the weather and being a Friday. Later in the afternoon the weather started to get better and more people were out walking around. Tomorrow should be much better weather with Sun all day and clear skies.

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At 5 pm we all headed over to Alex’s house just a few blocks away for a pizza party. Alex was a great hostess and gave us a tour/history of her 1938 home in the historic district as well as all the great personal artwork that she has done not forgetting the great art pieces from fellow TCTer John Murphy. After dinner we all gathered and had a gift exchange party which was a blast! Around 830 most of us headed back to our trailers to get a good nights rest for tomorrow. With much better weather forecasted tomorrow it is sure to be a very busy day.

Tim Heintz

Tin Can Tourists’ Southeastern Representative

1953 Viking Coach

Categories
Rallies Southeast Region

Tin Can Tourists’ 2015 Chautauqua Exhibit

Tin Can Tourists’ 2015 Chautauqua Exhibit

January 22, 2015

DeFuniak Springs, FL

Once again time to hit the road for a TCT Rally, well more of a historical trailer display for the Defuniak Springs Florida Chautauqua Celebration. I woke up this morning a little later than most morning that I travel since the event is only about 45 miles away. So I headed down to my storage shop to pick up the trailer I plan to take, this time I will be bringing a 1953 Viking Coach to display. We will also have 7 other TCTers bringing their trailers as well.

I arrived at my shop around 9am and finished packing a few last minuet items in the trailer, hooked up the trailer, checked all the lights, washed the trailer, and filled the water tank. I was now ready to hit the road, but realized I forgot my coffee pot so I figured I would stop back by the house as it was on the way out of town. When I arrived back home I realized my truck was running a little hot, but not bad so I just checked the radiator and it was a little low, after filling it all the way up I headed out for the road once again.  I only made it about 20 miles north when the truck started to overheat again! Couldn’t figure out why this was happening…..I just changed the water pump as well as the thermostat just this week! Anyway the truck cooled down and I had two empty jugs in the back of the truck, took them back to the trailer and filled them with water from the trailers fresh water tank using the water to refill the radiator from the water that was lost from overheating.  Finally back on the road again!10928727_10152945372270901_1012860926_n

Another 15 or so miles the truck started to overheat again!!!! Pulled over at a truck stop hoping they would have some tools that I could buy/use to take the new thermostat out of the truck just to make it to the venue. No luck!!! So I waited for the truck to cool down again and used the trailers water tanks again to fill the radiator back up.  I was hoping to make it another 15 miles to the next town, as I pulled out I was passed at the cross intersection by a Jim and Donna pulling their 1958 Yellowstone (they were going to the same event) so as soon as the red light changed I tried to catch up with them, I figured Jim would have the tools I needed to fix my truck. For 10 miles I tried to call Jim on his cell phone, blew the horn right behind him, swerved over the line trying to get him to see me, flashed my lights, and even waving like an idiot with my hands out the window……but no luck, Jim and Donna were in their own world! I was forced to pull over again as the truck was overheating again!

 

AGAIN, pulled over, waited for the truck to cool down a bit, refilled the radiator from all the over flow that steamed out and back on the road. Looked like I was only going to get their 10 miles at a time! So once again I was limping along trying to keep the truck as cool as possible. Just my luck……ROAD CONSTRUCTION, with one lane closed on a two lane highway! At least it gave me a chance to sit for about 15 min never moving with the engine off….once traffic started moving again I cranked the truck and it had enough time to cool down quite a bit and I was finally able to make it to a large enough town with an automotive shop. I pulled in and went inside to buy the tools I needed to take the thermostat out of the truck, but of course I ended up making three trips inside the store buying all the parts and tools that I needed….next time I will remember to pack my tools, this is the first time I have ever forgot to pack the tools in the truck!

10949836_10152945372190901_1059215160_nFinally got the thermostat out and bought a new radiator cap just in case that was the problem as well.  Had to refill the radiator AGAIN, and back on the road hoping this was the last stop. Only 15 miles from the destination, surely I could make it no matter what…..WRONG! 10 miles down the road, same thing!!! No water was leaking out of the truck, just overheating and boiling over of water!!! I cannot figure it out!!! So once again on the side of the road, waited for the truck to cool, and refilling the radiator from the trailers water tank. I also took the radiator hoses off to make sure they were not blocked somehow!

Last leg, only 5 miles away, surely I could make it now! AGAIN, WRONG!!! 1 mile from the finally destination, as soon as I passed the Defuniak Springs City Limits Sign…. I saw what can only be described as Old Faithfull under my hood!!!!! WATER and STEAM everywhere…..pulled over at a gas station and opened the hood (for once the temperature on the truck was very low….all the water spraying on the engine cooled it down quickly) However it came from a broken water fitting on the engine. One last time I filled the radiator with water, knowing it would start coming out the broken fitting, but figured I had less than a mile and would take my chances in getting to the exhibit area just a few blocks away. I took it easy coasting to each red light and shutting the engine off when I reached enough speed to make it to the next red light / stop sign.   It worked and I made it to my final destination!!!!!!!

I backed the trailer into place, parked the truck and decided not to even bother with the truck until tomorrow.  I set up the trailer and helped get all the other trailers that arrived parked into place. So far today we have a 1965 Aristocrat Mainliner, 1958 Yellowstone, 1963 Shasta, 1953 Viking, 1965 Shasta Compact, 1948 Spartan Manor, and a 1966 Norris…..one more to come tomorrow, a 1952 Vagabond.

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At 5pm we had a small meet and greet and sat around the camp fire until 930pm. hopefully the weather tomorrow will not be too bad, it is forecasted to rain quite a bit tonight and most of the day tomorrow.  It has been a VERY long day and I am ready for a good night’s rest.

Tim Heintz

Tin Can Tourists’ Southeastern Representative

1953 Viking Coach

 

Categories
Rallies Southeast Region

Tin Can Tourists’ 2014 Winter Convention

Tin Can Tourists’ 2014 Winter Convention

February 23rd 2014

Brooksville, FL – Panama City, FL

I woke up quite early this morning, probably a bit anxious to get on the road and head home, hoping to have no trouble on the way home unlike on our trip down. I started to pack up most of our outdoor items, including all my parts and the golf cart onto the utility trailer that we pull behind the motorhome. At 8am I headed over to the pavilion were we were having breakfast. A few of the members pulled out quite early this morning, but most everyone else was still around. We got to stand around and talk and say our good byes. Every Rally seems to go by so fast, never long enough but it helps knowing the next rally will be just as fun!

By about 10 am we were all set to head out towards home. My parents would be following us in their little truck and I would be driving the Motorhome with the trailer in tow. The motorhome drove great with all new tires!! A few hours down the road I noticed my parents were not behind us anymore, so I slowed down a bit to see if they would catch back up to us. About the time I was getting concerned I noticed my cell phone was on silent and there were several missed calls.  I turned the cell phone back up at the same time it rang again, my mother was calling to let me know they had a front tire coming apart on the front of the truck and had pulled off the Interstate about 30 miles back! They had found a tire center and were going to get the front two tires replaced just to be safe. They told us to continue on as it would take us another 45 minutes to get back to them and by then they should be back on the road. So we continued on home running into hard rain not far up I-75. The rain continued all the way up I-75 and by the time we made it to I-10 it was starting to rain pretty heavy. We pulled over at a rest area not long after getting on I-10 and discovered it was getting cold outside; I even had to change from shorts to jeans. We continued down to interstate making taking our exit towards Panama City. By 4 pm we were pulling in at home and at the same time my parents called to tell us it took forever to get the tires changed and they were still about 4 hours behind us at this point. They finally got home around 8pm.

What a trip! No matter what kind of travel trouble I have, I am always looking forward to the next Tin Can Tourists Rally!!!!

 

Tim Heintz

Tin Can Tourists Southeastern Representative

1995 Fleetwood Flair

Categories
Rallies Southeast Region

Tin Can Tourists’ 2014 Winter Convention

Tin Can Tourists’ 2014 Winter Convention

February 22nd 2014

Brooksville, FL

Woke up this morning to a few dark clouds and a heavy fog, but there was the promise of clearing skies and warm weather to come quickly. I made my way over to the pavilion where we all had donuts/pastries and coffee for breakfast.  Soon after most of us headed back to our trailers to get ready for the open house, as I headed back to set up the rest of my parts for sale since I did not bring a vintage trailer to the winter convention this year.

Before the dark clouds cleared out we did have a very short light rain, just long enough to get everything a little wet, but thankfully the sun came out and dried most of it up rather quickly. The flow of visitors was a good steady flow, and not too busy allowing for an easy day. I sold quite a bit of parts as well as antique accessories to go with vintage trailers.

I missed not having one of my vintage trailers with me, but it was nice to bring modern once and being able to enjoy the rally and walk around seeing all the trailers on display. (Pictures can be viewed at http://www.flickr.com/photos/tbone2/sets/72157641453933663/ ) The weather throughout the day was great and the sun was out for most of the day. We had a lot of visitors who had recently purchased vintage trailers and can’t wait to get involved with the Tin Can Tourists and start using their ‘new’ trailers.

Around 1pm we called to see if there was a tire shop that would come out to change the last two tires that needed to be replaced on the Motorhome. There was only one tire shop located in Dade City and could not make it out, but said if the motorhome could be driven there by 130 they could get the last two tires replaced. So my parents loaded up the motorhome and headed to Dade City while I stayed behind with all the parts I had for sale. They were only gone for about an hour before returning with the two new tires installed on the motorhome. Now we will be driving home on all new tires!!!

By 5 pm the open house was over and it was time for dinner which was a great BBQ dinner supplied by the Youth Ranches volunteers. When dinner was over I showed the TV Episode of Extreme RVs from the Travel Channel that featured our shop ‘Heintz Designs Vintage Trailer Restorations’ (www.HeintzDesigns.com) since the featured restored trailer was in attendance at the Winter Convention. It was a gold colored 1957 Airfloat Landyacht Coach.  After the Extreme RVs they showed the movie ‘The Long Long Trailer’, many people came out to see the movie. I decided to walk around a bit and see if there were any groups gathered around a campfire as I had already seen the movie a few hundred times! I found a group gathered at Harvey’s 1970 WilliamsCraft Trailer and we sat around and talked trailers for a few hours before it was well past 10 pm so we all decided to head to bed as we were all pulling out in the morning.

Tim Heintz

Tin Can Tourists Southeastern Representative

1995 Fleetwood Flair

Categories
Rallies Southeast Region Uncategorized

Tin Can Tourists’ 2014 Winter Convention

Tin Can Tourists’ 2014 Winter Convention

February 21st 2014

Brooksville, FL

I slept very well last night after such a long day of travel and roadside tire problem on the way down. The rest of the family slept in, but I went ahead and got up for breakfast at the pavilion to see everyone who was still wondering if I had made it to the campground last night. Everyone was happy to see that we finally arrived in one piece last night. Breakfast was supplied by the youth ranch volunteers and it was great to have a big warm breakfast.

After breakfast we had a memorial service for John ‘Canner’ Culp, who had passed away earlier this year. John was the last of the true Tin Can Tourists having attended the original TCT Rallies in the 1930’s and 1940’s with his parents. John also lived full time in a 1947 Westcraft Trailer that he bought brand new with his father in 1947. John pulled it all over the US well into his 80’s when he finally retired from the road about 4 years ago and parked the trailer in central FL to live in.John Culp with his 1947 WestCraft

After the service we had the rest of the day to do whatever we wanted to do. I was happy to spend most of the day walking around and talking to everyone at the rally. Many of the TCTers at the event I had not seen in at least a year or more. We had some really great trailers attend this year, although many of our Airstream Friends were drawn away from our winter convention with an Airstream Rally in FL the same weekend, but we still had a good supply of vintage Airstreams at the event.

I eventually made it back to my rig and started to unpack all of the vintage parts I had packed to bring down with me to sell at the rally. I had four large tubs full of parts that I still needed to go through, price and layout on the utility trailer. I had also brought a lot of antiques for vintage trailers such as coffee pots, dishes, and even vintage clothing. Even sold a few items early as I was unpacking.

At 6 pm it was time for a pot luck dinner with chicken provided; there was a ton of side dishes including some awesome deserts.  When dinner was over we had a band providing a great selection of music. There was quite a bit of dancing as well with a couple of surprise fire dances from one of our fellow TCTers!!!! The music lasted well into the night, until we all could not stay up any longer and finally headed in for the night. Been a great day and can’t wait until tomorrow!

 

Tim Heintz

Tin Can Tourists Southeastern Representative

1995 Fleetwood Flair

Categories
Rallies Southeast Region Uncategorized

Tin Can Tourists’ 2014 Winter Convention

Tin Can Tourists’ 2014 Winter Convention

February 20th 2014

Panama City, FL – Brooksville, FL

I spent all day yesterday packing all the vintage trailer parts and antiques that I want to bring for the flea market on Saturday at the TCT Rally. Since I am not bringing a vintage trailer this time I may as well bring part of vintage trailers. After packing all my parts, I finished packing all my clothes and other items I usually take. This time I will not be pulling vintage, I will be bringing a more modern Motorhome with a utility trailer in tow behind with all my parts onboard.

At 6:30am I loaded up all my stuff and headed a few blocks away to my grandparents place. They will be tagging along with me and allowing me to drive their Motorhome (they are TCT Members too and love to attend the rallies) Although they have never owned a vintage trailer, they have owned MANY new trailers that would be considered vintage today….their first was a 1954 Continental Trailer 35’.

By 7:30am we were all set to hit the road. Felt a bit weird at first, I am used to driving a shorter vehicle with a longer trailer in tow, this time I have a 30’ tow vehicle and a 13’ trailer in tow….I feel backwards! But quickly got used to how the motorhome handled. Starting off traffic was a little heavy out of Panama City as this weekend starts our Spring Break Season, and traffic was already quite a bit heavier than usual, but thankfully it was all incoming traffic and we were heading out of town.

About 120 miles down the road the motor home started to shutter and it felt like a tire was getting ready to blow. So I pulled off at the first exit off I-10 and of course as my luck would have it we were in the middle of nowhere right outside of Madison FL. The only thing at the exit was a gas station, but it was better than the side of the highway. Got out of the rig and looked around but saw no signs of tire trouble, so after driving around the station thought it may have been the road. As soon as we got back on the road and before getting back on the interstate it started again so I did a U Turn….all 43’ of us in the median and headed back to the gas station. Called the road side service and they my cell phone was cutting in and out really bad being out in the middle of nowhere, I had to climb up the rear ladder and get on the roof of the motorhome…..just like Robin Williams in the movie ‘RV’ And as if that was not a sight for all the people as the station, I always pace when I am on the phone, and didn’t realize until the call was over that I had been walking back and forth the length of the motor home for about 30 minutes!

Road side service said they would have someone out in about 20 minutes, which I was very happy with since usually it takes hours! Best of all after only 10 minutes the repair guy was there to change the inner rear dually with our spare. It didn’t take him long and he finished up the tire change and put the old tire on the back where the spare was located. He left and after eating a quick lunch we were ready to get back on the road

Roadside……or so we thought.

As soon as we got back on the road the same bouncing started. So again I made a tight U turn and headed back to the station.  Called road side service again and they asked how bad the bouncing was which I told them it was bouncing quite a bit, but not too bad. They asked if I could make it 7 miles to the next exit where there was a large tire and truck shop. So I told them we could make it and I would take it slow on the interstate, otherwise I would have been waiting for hours.  Got back on the interstate and finally made it the 7 miles at 35mph. After turning onto the exit I looked for the station but did not see it anywhere. Thankfully the lady on the phone gave me the stations number, so I called it and they informed me that they had not been at that location in over 2.5 years!!!! And they moved 50 more miles down the road. So I called road side service and told them what had happened and how aggravated I was at their outdated information.  The ‘new’ lady on the phone was very helpful and found another tire shop 6 miles down the road, but the good thing about it was I could travel on the exit road and not get back on the interstate. So off towards Madison FL to find the tire shop.

After circling the town about three times we finally found the tire shop. They looked at the rear tires and found an inner dually on the street side was bad, and the tread was warped. So they had a tire in stock and changed it out. Didn’t take them too long, and to find out the very first repair guy was from this same shop.  After the tire was installed we packed up and got ready to hit the road. Within a block of the tire shop (by the time we got up to speed) the rig was doing it again!!!! So we turned around and headed back.

The guys were surprised to see us back, but we told them what it was doing and upon inspecting the front two tires they found that they too were warped. So we asked them to put two new tires on the front. One problem…..they were out of tires for this rig and could get them delivered by morning! They owner told us to hold on and he would call and see if he could get any from town even though it was already 4:30 pm. Just our luck he located two tires and went to pick them up and his crew even stayed late to help make sure they were installed for us to get back on the road.Madison FL Tire Shop

The tire guys told us that the make and model of tires on the rig had been recalled due to failure, it was an older recall and the tires have been on this rig for years already, so no wonder we were having all these problems. Unfortunately there were not enough tires to replace them all, but he told us to make sure to get them all changed (ones still not replaced) and he didn’t like the look of the two on the curbside, but they might make it the remaining 150 miles to Brooksville.

After the two front tires were installed we headed back out once more……this time there was no bouncing for once!!! Everything seemed to be fine. Even started to make good time on the highway.

BUT………………………… after getting on I-75 I could start to fell a slight shuttering/bouncing, so I slowed down a bit, hoping it was the road or at least that slowing down would help to make to Brooksville or at least to a place to pull over. About the time I turned to my Grandfather to tell him I thought another tire was going bad, there was a huge bang and I could fell the curbside of the rig lower. We had blown a tire, but at least it was an outer dually this time (a bit easier to change). This time there was no spare, so we called roadside service again. They told us they would find someone to come out and bring us a new tire. Took quite a while for them to call us back as they had a hard time finding a place opened after hours with the tire we need.

Within an hour the service truck arrived on site. I-75 Road SideThe guy was great, within 20 minutes he had the bad tire off the rim, new tire installed on the rim (by hand), installed on the rig, and had us ready for the road. We pulled out on the interstate and were ready to finish the last 120 miles of the trip. Thankfully the last leg of our trip was eventless and we finally made it to the campground by 11:30pm. We found a great spot right by a few friends and did a little bit of setting up before grabbing a very late dinner. I can’t believe it took us from 7:30am to 11:30pm to travel just 343 miles!  That’s an average of 21.5 miles per hour!!!! I could have made it faster by moped!!!!!

Time for a well-deserved good night’s sleep!

Tim Heintz

Tin Can Tourists Southeastern Representative

1995 Fleetwood Flair

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Rallies Regional Representatives Southeast Region

Tin Can Tourists’ 2014 Chautauqua Rally in DeFuniak Springs FL

Tin Can Tourists’ 2014 Chautauqua Rally

January 26th 2014

DeFuniak Springs, FL – Panama City, FL

Last night must have been a bit warmer as I had to get up and turn the heat down during the night as it started to get a little too warm in the trailer. Still was a bit cool outside this morning but the wind had calmed down and it felt promising for a warmer day.  Around 8:00 am one of the event staff came by and invited all of us next door for a pancake breakfast so we all walked over to the old hospital building where they were cooking the breakfast. It was a great breakfast and we got to eat in a nice warm building.

After breakfast we all made our way back to our trailers for the last show day. Finally the temperature was starting to feel better and for once I did not have four full layers on, just a T-Shirt with a wind breaker jacket. The event was supposed to start around 8:00 am but the event grounds were empty with even a few other exhibits packing up late yesterday and leaving. Unfortunately the weather this year has been horribly cold and has kept the crowds in out of the weather.

Around lunch things started to pick up a bit with the weather finally warming up quite a bit and the sun had even broken through the clouds. I am sure the Church crowds helped with so many Churches around the lake, as well as the Civil War battle that was scheduled around 1:00 pm. We had quite a few people stop by from lunch time until the time for the Battle. After the Civil war battle there was another increase in people wanting to see the trailers as they walked back to the parking areas.

When 3:00 pm came around the crowds had finally stopped and it was time for the events to be over. All of us started to pack up, say our good byes, and get ready to hit the road. It was just our luck; the best weather of the entire weekend was when we were packing up. By 3:30 pm the first trailers were starting to pull out, the first three had the furthest to travel home while the rest of us only had about 50 miles to get home and a few only had 5 miles or less! By 4:00 pm the last three trailers in the line-up would be those of us from Panama City, so we all traveled home together as it is fun to see everyone on the road get excited when there is a caravan of vintage trailers traveling down the road together.

By 5:00 pm we were driving into Panama City and I was the first one to turn off the highway for the last mile of my trip home, the other two trailers passed by blowing their horns and waving as they went by. It has been a great time regardless of the cold weather, in fact because of the cold weather we had some of the best time sitting around a nice warm campfire and enjoying each other’s company. Looking forward to the next time we are all together, because “the more we get together”……well you know the rest!

Tim Heintz

Tin Can Tourists Southeastern Representative

1950 Spartanette Tandem

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Rallies Regional Representatives Southeast Region

Tin Can Tourists’ 2014 Chautauqua Rally in DeFuniak Springs FL

Tin Can Tourists’ 2014 Chautauqua Rally

January 25th 2014

DeFuniak Springs, FL

Slept very well last night and stayed quite warm as last night was not as cold as the last few nights. In fact there were a few times I almost got hot last night, of course the heater was on full blast! As much as I did not want to get out of bed but finally, after hitting the snooze alarm a few times, I got up and started the large coffee pot for everyone and put out all the breakfast treats on the table out under my awning. It still felt quite cold this morning but there was the promise by the national weather service that we would reach in lower 60’s today, however with it at 38 degrees we had a ways to go.

Around 9:30 am there were a few people starting to walk around and wanting to look at the vintage trailers. Everyone that came through seemed quite interested in the vintage trailers and the TCT. It was still quite cold and the crowds were rather small and came in quick shifts, likely just small groups walking from the parking areas to the main event areas. Since it was rather slow I decided to walk down to the Vintage Car show to check out a few cars that were arriving, I was surprised to see fellow TCTers and good friends of mine Herb and Sidra Spies who had brought their 1925 Ford Truck with a 1916 Expanding Apartment on the back of it. If you have never seen their rig you should look it up, an awesome rig similar to what the early TCTers would have used in the very early days of our existence.

By lunch time the weather was looking a bit better and I was even able to take my heavy coat off and just have on a sweater. As the weather warmed up the crowds started to get larger and for a while we had a steady stream of people moving through the vintage trailer area. Many people were thrilled to see a new aspect of the Chautauqua Fair by having the TCT at their event. In fact may of the spectators asked if we would be back for next year and if we would bring even more trailers, which was a surprise coming from the general public as it seemed they really enjoyed the vintage trailers and the history of tourism in Florida.

At 3:30 pm the crowds slowed down a bit again, but all the sudden by 4:30 pm there was another rush of people, probably on their way back to the parking areas as many of the other events were closing down. We were happy to show our trailers to anyone that showed interest in the trailers or the TCT group in general, as many of the spectators had toured our trailers earlier but came back bringing more friends and families to see the trailers.

5:00 pm arrived and it was time to shut our trailers down and get ready for dinner. Since we had such a busy day I had planned just sub sandwiches, chips, and cake for dinner. Everyone made their own sandwiches to order, we had Turkey, Chicken, and Ham. Best of all we had a nice large campfire to sit around, which we could finally enjoy since the weather has warmed up quite a bit. The last few days have even been too cold to sit around a campfire! Tonight we were able to enjoy a long night of sitting around the camp fire eating cake and talking late into the night. Eventually fewer and fewer people were left around the fire until the rest of us were so tired and ready for bed that we decided we better get some good sleep as we still have about 7 hours to show our trailers tomorrow before the event is over and many of us will be driving home tomorrow evening as well.

Tim Heintz

Tin Can Tourists Southeastern Representative

1950 Spartanette Tandem

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Rallies Regional Representatives Southeast Region

Tin Can Tourists’ 2014 Chautauqua Rally in DeFuniak Springs FL

Tin Can Tourists’ 2014 Chautauqua Rally

January 24th 2014

DeFuniak Springs, FL

Up bright and early this morning before my alarm went off thanks to the 5:00 am Train passing right behind my trailer! But I needed to get up early anyway to get the coffee started for everyone as it is very cold this morning, a mere 27 degrees with all the fountains outside frozen solid! Seems like it may be a very cold day which was expected as the weather forecast always had this Friday as the coldest day, but the exact temperature forecast has been changing every hour. This morning is states we should get up to about 45 degrees but with it so cold this morning we can only hope it does.

By about 7:00 am we all walked down the block to the Historical Episcopal Church where they were cooking breakfast for a $5 donation. The Church is an awesome building built not long after the civil war in the 1870’s. Breakfast was great not to mention being inside a heated building for a meal! Sitting around with all the other members (new and old) was a great time as well.

After Breakfast we all made our way back to our trailers to see if there would be any visitors to take tours of our trailers. It was still quite cold and did not seem to be warming up like the forecast said it would. By 11:00 am it was still 35 degrees and a wind chill factor of 24 degrees.  Thankfully we had our trailers we could step into and warm up a bit, but all the Indians, Civil War reenactor and the cowboys were all stuck out in the open with nowhere to get out of the cold except their small historical tents, which the Civil War reenactor are sleeping in every night!!!!

Throughout the day it was very slow, but that can be expected since today is a work day and the weather is so cold and miserable. There still were quite a few people passing through that were very interested in the trailers and would even knock on the door if we were inside warming up wanting to come in a see the insides of the trailers. It also gave us plenty of time to walk around the see all the other members’ trailers too.

Later on things really slowed down and many of the other exhibits closed down early as the weather was just not getting better. Our high today only reached 38 degrees and even lower for the wind chill. We started up our camp fire and sat around that to try and stay warm. Wasn’t long before we started to hear from others and from weather warnings on our phones that it was snowing about 60 miles to our west and sleeting about just a few miles to our north, south, and west.  About an hour later we finally started to get freezing rain and sleet mixture. Just what we needed to top off this miserable day, however I think we broke a TCT Rally for the Coldest Rally in FL and the only Rally to have Sleet and Freezing Rain.

At 6pm everyone gathered around my trailer for a pizza dinner. Finally the wind had stopped blowing and it did feel a little bit warmer without the wind chill factor.  We all huddled around the camp fire for warmth and had a great time talking and eating our pizza. For Deseret we had Birthday and Anniversary Cupcakes.  Larry’s Friend Angie had a Birthday today and it was Forrest and Jerri’s 51st   Wedding anniversary. After eating we all sat around for a short time before heading back to our warm trailers to warm up and get ready for bed, it is just too cold to be sitting outside but hopefully tonight will be the last of our really cold nights. Tomorrow is supposed to bring low 60’s for our temperatures….we can only hope it is true!

I think I am going to follow everyone else and call it an early night. Too cold to stay up, and the light sound of sleet on the roof of my trailer is about to put me to sleep, if the trains will stop their drive-bys!

Tim Heintz

Tin Can Tourists Southeastern Representative

1950 Spartanette Tandem

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Rallies Regional Representatives Southeast Region

Tin Can Tourists’ 2014 Chautauqua Rally In Defuniak Springs FL

Tin Can Tourists’ 2014 Chautauqua Rally

January 23rd 2014

Panama City FL-DeFuniak Springs, FL

I spent most of yesterday packing my Spartanette and getting ready to head out of town for the TCT DeFuniak Springs FL Rally. I have been watching the weather nervously as it has been changing every day for the extended forecast from mild, to warm, cold, and even at one time forecasting a rain and sleet mixture!!!! It now looks a little better with Thursday being a little cool, but Thursday night will get down to 25 degrees and only a high of 45 on Friday, but if we can make it through that the rest of the days will make it up to at least 60 degrees.

By 9:45 am I was all packed and ready to hit the road as soon as some other TCTers arrived at my shop as we were going to caravan together up to DeFuniak Springs which is only about 60 miles away from Panama City. Around 10:00 am the other two trailers pulling in at my shop, a 1965 Airstream Globetrotter and a 1967 Airstream Caravel. We were now ready to hit the road with my 1950 Spartanette leading the pack! It is just fun cruising the highways with a line of vintage trailers, even a very small line.

A little after 11 am all three of us pulled into the area we were to park around Lake DeFuniak. The location is perfect, with our trailers facing the lakeside parked on asphalt with the edge of our trailers right up to the grass so we ca still set our awnings up. Plenty of power as well with every trailer on their own power panel which is unusually for a set up like this, but will come in handy tonight with a low temperature of 25 degrees I am sure we will all have our heaters on full blast!

It wasn’t long before more trailers started to arrive and started to set up. We will be a small group of only about 8/9 trailers, but sometimes those are the best! By 3 pm everyone had arrived and set up except one more trailer which should arrive later tonight around 10 pm from GA.At 5 pm we all gathered near my trailer (and the camp fire) to meet all our new members and eat a light meal. Almost all of us are Floridians and had three to five layers of clothes on, but there sat Forrest Bone with Shorts on!!!!! Just made all of us even colder!  With the sun setting so early this time of year everyone headed back to their trailers or more importantly their heaters! A few headed home since they are locals and live right here in DeFuniak Springs. I also headed to my trailer to relax a bit and get out of the cold; I will have to stay up for a little while longer waiting for the last trailer to arrive tonight around 10 pm.

Hopefully the trains will stop before it gets much later! We are just a few steps from a major RR line. So far in the nine hours we have been here I have seen about 6 trains go by. They do not even slow down for this little town and fly through here extremely fast blowing their horns the whole time! My trailer is a bit farther down the line than most and we are still so close that the entire trailer shakes like being in an earthquake until the trailer has past, and these are long trains…..this is the major RR line that parallels Interstate 10 cross country, so a lot of train traffic moving through here….it is sure to be a fun night if it continues much longer!

Tim Heintz

Tin Can Tourists Southeastern Representative

1950 Spartanette Tandem

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Rallies Regional Representatives Southeast Region

TCT Florida Homecoming Rally 2011

Estero, Fl

 November 9, 2011

Time again for the Florida Homecoming Rally down in Estero Florida at the Koreshan State Historic Site. So after a full 10 hour work day today I headed straight home to hook up my 1950 Spartanette to my truck and head south! By the time I made it home and got hooked up, it was about 630pm. With 10 hours and 500 miles ahead of me, I headed out. I was making really good time, but by about midnight I was just too tired to drive anymore. In years past I have made it at least 400 miles, but this was the first year at working 10 hours the day I left! So I pulled over at a rest area just outside of Gainesville with overnight security, and decided to sleep for a few hours in the Spartanette. Got into bed and set my alarm for 4 am.

Tim Heintz

TCT S.E. Rep.

1950 Spartanette Tandem