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Designing a Travel Trailer for Model X

JAG

Member
Oct 29, 2012
38
13
Newport Beach
I bought MX with the idea of seeing the world. At the time of purchase sales associates at Fashion Island in Newport Beach CA said I would be able to put my MX in a shipping container and do the same with a travel trailer and tour Europe using my lifetime free supercharging.

As a test I've survived without a travel trailer in Model X in Colorado now for sevelral winters at Telluride, Aspen, Vail , Beaver Creek, Steamboat , Copper Mountain, Winter Park, Loveland, Park City, Mammoth, Snow Summit, Big Bear, June Mountain, Wold Creek etc, . I have it down to a science at this point. My need for a travel trailer is now more centered on a GF's diminished bladder size, and that there is really limited space for two peoples winter gear and clothing, and cooking in bad weather (wind, rain, snow) . Frankly I have the last part solved as well as showering, in 4 years of Tesla winter camping, I have never had to go even a single day without a fresh hot shower. I even have a way of putting a shower accessory kit in my Model X that heats the water using the cellphone app and allows for a fully wind protected shower that even a very tall person can stand up in.

But in terms of my European snowboard tour, I was misled by the sales associates at Fashion Island . . 3 phase charging in Europe will make this hard without additional electronics , supercharging accounts might not be global , and service won't work globally either, my warranty would be void if I bring the car to Europe, though X care has an extended warranty plan that currently works in the USA , Canada, and Mexico. Loss of Europe seems a shame because if any one car company could make this happen or still could make this happen it would be Tesla.

But let's not forget the idea of having some habitable space towed behind me. Towing just a bed in a tear drop seems silly. A shower and toilet is needed, and cooking would be nice.

I'm not sure I would bother with a travel trailer being solo. But car camping isn't for everyone,

I have tried 6 different types of mattresses, many different shower products, whether it's worth it to bring folding chairs, yeti cooolers (every size and type and combination ) Engel fiberglass coolers that keep ice for 2 weeks , 5 different types of stoves and different fuels at different temps and altitudes.

And I have looked at the WINTER ready travel trailers available to us , all the current models, visited the Bowlus factory, talked with ESCAPE, and Oliver , considered New airstreams , vintage airstreams , Avion, Silver Streak , Silver Stream, I am trying to avoid stick built trailers like Lance, and other options that won't last more than a decade or so before delamination , mold and other issues would mean it would have to be discarded.

And in the end.... nothing really works.

In an ideal world...I'd buy a salvaged tesla , mount a trailer on the skateboard platform that is collapsible so it can slip stream my Model X . Not even connect them with anything beyond safety chains , and use the fleet software of Tesla SEMI to make the trailer follow my car like networked Tesla Semi. Both would charge at the superchargers and in a perfect world while going downhill maybe the front Tesla would get regen from the rear to help balance out range.

Why do this? Because range from Supercharger to Supercharger would not be so impacted. If I could direct regen and perhaps transfer power between the two I could arrive at a campsite with a trailer full of charge, and then go off and recharge the lead car. Or in the case of making the entire trailer out of solar panels I could perhaps go into a more remote location, and then drop the trailer to charge up with sun and then charge the drive car too.

Today's travel trailers are a horrible design. As a trailer drops below 30 feet the living room area shrinks dramatically . At 26 feet the living room is a dinette abutting a couch, Abutting a kitchen , and finally abutting a bed. Below 22 feet you are towing a mattress up against a dinette and kitchen. Showers are uncomfortably cramped as are toilets. And nothing is there to take advantage of a FULLY ELECTRIC COACH.

All the collapsible travel trailers are unsuitably insulated for Colorado Winters.

And of course , paradoxically, tests in other threads show shorter tear drop trailers tow with higher energy usage per mile than longer trailers that weigh more but tend to be more aerodynamic with rounded corners and longer length.

A Bowlus 26' empty tin can with no insulation that costs as much as two Model X makes ZERO sense to me,

So much of the vintage trailers remind me of some grandmothers house with old quilts and dowdy upholstery.

Elòn Musk once said that trying to adapt the original roadster Lotus chassis was much more labor than if he built one from the ground up.

So instead a PURPOSE BUILT TRAILER FOR EVs needs to be built . There should be. Way to integrate their aerodynamic Envelopes into one.

...............

I have some awesome ideas.

The possibility of taking, long hot showers.

Most of the coach being living space and the kitchens and bathrooms only being set up as needed and being able to be set up in less than 30 seconds.

Radiant heated floors. ( far more efficient )

Solar hot water heat banks with heat exchangers.

Ways to control water heating remotely from your phone without having to load any new software.

A collapsible and expandible.trailer for improved aerodynamics that sets up quickly and is freeze proof. Modular to even allow storing in a garage.

Audiophile quality sound and a short throw projector that is both integrated into the trailer and can be brought outside to turn the side of your trailer into a mini drivein.

The option to remove water from the air using solar and battery power to extend boondocking.

Integrated washer dryer that operates mostly while charging.

New ways of managing refrigeration other than just relying on a refrigerator box which is too small and awkward in a small space.

The way I see it MODEL X in a shorter trailer version has the MX as the bedroom and the trailer as living room, kitchen bathroom . And in a longer version as a way to have a bed in the trailer with the option of using MX as a "guest bedroom " or just storage.

I wouldn't do this as a one off. But if enough were interested it could be a project worth doing. The other day I met a battery pack designer from Rivian , and I am very good friends with a former skateboard racer buddy who now owns EV West (seller of Tesla parts To convert ICE cars to EV) so Tesla drive trains and battery packs are available . I have access to a multi axis CNC milling machine with tool cassettes. As well as access to wooden lamination presses for snowboards and longboards . And a friend I used to coach , who sells 3 d printers. Other friends of mine have designed Wine refrigerators, I know which compressors to use that are very quiet, efficient, and reliable .

I don't want a stick built trailer. It should be aluminum or perhaps some combination of aluminum , and fiberglass and 3D printed pieces. Sections should be modular to allow for parts sharing.much of redundant walls and cabinetry walls should be eliminated. Insulation should be also part of the structural element,

Lastly , it might be nice if part of the collapsible part of this also allows for the tin can to be opened in good weather like a part of a wall that hinges to form at once an overhang and a bar.

Surfaces and furnishings should be easy to clean as dust and wind seems to conspire to make all RVs instantly dirty ina. Dust storm . I see seating surfaces made of one density foam for sitting in one side and softer foam for sleeping on the other. All cushions should have a slight overhanging skirt of about an inch to keep dust from getting under them.

I tend to design things to avoid problems before others even consider the problem from occurring, yet I don't over design for things which will never be problematic.

Anything considered for the coach should have multiple usage consideration . There should also be redundant systems without Adding ANY additional weight to cover some systems in case of failure, For instance an pair of separate induction cooktops could be used as two burners, or also for heating a water tank. Should one element fail the other could do double duty , and be easily inexpensively replaceable . The induction cooktops could be easily placed outside and be in weather proof containers which would allow for a shower or toilet set up more permanently in the space vacated by the kitchen (nice for boondocking). Or vice versa. (But don't leave kitchens out in Bear country). I just want people to feel free to utilize and configure their campsite to give them the most enjoyment for the least amount of effort.
 

JAG

Member
Oct 29, 2012
38
13
Newport Beach
Does anyone know the curb weight for a naked skateboard chassis for either MX or MS? Given the wheelbase a trailer of length of 22'-26' is the likely length. Most of the weight would be stored low in the camper to keep with good handling. If it would be possible with steering geometry and summon mode to keep the 4 wheel skateboard chassis intact tongue weight would be manageable. If steering was an issue then its possible the drive units would have to be moved to be closer to one another with steering disabled in a "double axle" type configuration.

Not afraid here to proclaim any steering and trailer ignorance here, any correction is something learned and well appreciated.
 

wooter

Nou ik heb niet te klagen over Tesla support
May 3, 2017
5,654
4,034
Belgium
I tend to design things to avoid problems before others even consider the problem from occurring, yet I don't over design for things which will never be problematic.
vs
But in terms of my European snowboard tour, I was misled by the sales associates at Fashion Island . . 3 phase charging in Europe will make this hard without additional electronics , supercharging accounts might not be global , and service won't work globally either, my warranty would be void if I bring the car to Europe, though X care has an extended warranty plan that currently works in the USA , Canada, and Mexico. Loss of Europe seems a shame because if any one car company could make this happen or still could make this happen it would be Tesla.
You claim to tend to design things to avoid problems before others even consider the problem, but you missed the fact that in Europe the charger plugs are different.

There are so much showstoppers with the fantasy of turning a salvage Model X into an autonomous trailer:
  • For one, anything Tesla SEMI software to have this driverless salvage Model X camper follow you is pure fantasy. The software isn't available yet, not yet rated for public use and if its available it will be locked in so you can't use it to have your own dedicated salvage Model X trailer follow you.
  • Nor will you be able to use Summon or any other software to follow your salvage Model X at highway speeds.
  • Weight distribution of a Model X chassis is ideal for a car. It's not for a trailer, unless you want to securely hook up a trailer hitch to the steering mechanism of the front axle. And I'm not sure you'd want a steered axle on a trailer
Your best bet is to design an unpowered trailer, and if weight allows to outfit it with batteries.
  • Combining batteries on the go will be picky. There is the issue of software you can't rewrite to make it aware of a second battery pack, the wiring over the trailer hitch that you need to connect to your Model X battery pack and the consequences on drilling holes in the car and modifying high voltage wiring to support this. However, hooking up extra batteries on a trailer has been done on a Rav4 EV: See This Range-Extending Toyota-Tesla Trailer In Action
  • Designing your own trailer allows you to save weight on construction. A Model X is designed to protect passengers during a crash, while a trailer doesn't have those prerequisites. This means that you can trade weight of safety designs into more useful trailer features like kitchen area, sanitary and living spaces.
 

ecarfan

Well-Known Member
Sep 21, 2013
19,198
13,851
West Vancouver, British Columbia
I admire your ambition. I have often fantasized about such a trailer, optimized for towing with an X.
I have looked at the WINTER ready travel trailers available to us , all the current models, visited the Bowlus factory, talked with ESCAPE, and Oliver , considered New airstreams , vintage airstreams , Avion, Silver Streak , Silver Stream, I am trying to avoid stick built trailers like Lance, and other options that won't last more than a decade or so before delamination , mold and other issues would mean it would have to be discarded.
You’ve looked at a lot of options and I agree they all have a variety of negatives. In my opinion the Bowlus would be the best choice, but of course the price is stratospheric. I decided on a Safari Condo Alto F1743 but it is most definitely not a 4 season trailer nor does the manufacturer claim it to be. Alto F1743 Travel Trailers | Safari Condo . So it does not meet your criteria.

Today's travel trailers are a horrible design. As a trailer drops below 30 feet the living room area shrinks dramatically . At 26 feet the living room is a dinette abutting a couch, Abutting a kitchen , and finally abutting a bed. Below 22 feet you are towing a mattress up against a dinette and kitchen. Showers are uncomfortably cramped as are toilets.
I think you are being a little harsh. My wife and I find our 17 ft Alto very comfortable with its queen size bed, two person table, toilet, inside and outside shower capability, kitchen with sink/stove/microwave/fridge and plenty of storage. That is not to say that I would want to live in it for months at a time, but for a few weeks it’s great!

A Bowlus 26' empty tin can with no insulation that costs as much as two Model X makes ZERO sense to me,
I believe it is insulated and is suitable for use in moderately cold temperatures but of course you are going to burn a lot of propane to keep warm.

a PURPOSE BUILT TRAILER FOR EVs needs to be built . There should be. Way to integrate their aerodynamic Envelopes into one.
And that would be wonderful, but right now the potential market is very small for a trailer that is optimized for aerodynamics. It’s more costly to construct a trailer shape to meet that goal, and it reduces the interior volume.
Most of the coach being living space and the kitchens and bathrooms only being set up as needed and being able to be set up in less than 30 seconds.
That sounds...impossible.

A collapsible and expandible.trailer for improved aerodynamics that sets up quickly and is freeze proof.
As soon as you make a structure “collapsible and expandable” you introduce a lot of seams and joints and mechanical complexity and reduce the insulating capability of the structure.

There should also be redundant systems without Adding ANY additional weight to cover some systems in case of failure,
Again, that sounds...impossible.

I hope you continue to share information about your project as you move forward, I am certainly very interested.
 

scottf200

Active Member
Feb 3, 2013
3,866
3,443
Chicagoland ModelX S603
Combining batteries on the go will be picky. There is the issue of software you can't rewrite to make it aware of a second battery pack, the wiring over the trailer hitch that you need to connect to your Model X battery pack and the consequences on drilling holes in the car and modifying high voltage wiring to support this. However, hooking up extra batteries on a trailer has been done on a Rav4 EV: See This Range-Extending Toyota-Tesla Trailer In Action
This guy connected a second Tesla battery pack in his custom to his Tesla Model X for longer range.
 
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wooter

Nou ik heb niet te klagen over Tesla support
May 3, 2017
5,654
4,034
Belgium
This guy connected a second Tesla battery pack in his custom to his Tesla Model X for longer range.
It's the same guy and I haven't found how he connected the trailer battery to the Tesla battery yet.

Also, he connects them in parallel so the software doesn't know there is a second battery, but only notices that consumption is less.[/QUOTE]
 
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JAG

Member
Oct 29, 2012
38
13
Newport Beach
Wooter thanks for replying, any insight you have negative or positive is valuable.

vs

You claim to tend to design things to avoid problems before others even consider the problem, but you missed the fact that in Europe the charger plugs are different.

---> yes I did miss that. I wasn't as much concerned with Europe as the USA at the time and made a mistake ONCE of trusting Tesla salespeople who were more motivated to make a sale than double check offer accurate information. I wouldn't make that mistake again, Im just trying to tell people what my mistakes were so they can learn from them. I also wanted to state that you you can't always go by what Tesla staff gives you, best to learn from actual experience as with anything in life.

There are so much showstoppers with the fantasy of turning a salvage Model X into an autonomous trailer:
  • For one, anything Tesla SEMI software to have this driverless salvage Model X camper follow you is pure fantasy. The software isn't available yet, not yet rated for public use and if its available it will be locked in so you can't use it to have your own dedicated salvage Model X trailer follow you.
----> Pure fantasy for the moment just like a great electric car was prior to Model S . And Zero incentive for Tesla to help with liability issues they designed the software themselves- or you use some other type of software adapted from commercial use.
  • Nor will you be able to use Summon or any other software to follow your salvage Model X at highway speeds.
  • Weight distribution of a Model X chassis is ideal for a car. It's not for a trailer, unless you want to securely hook up a trailer hitch to the steering mechanism of the front axle. And I'm not sure you'd want a steered axle on a trailer
----> No interest in using Summon at highway speeds it barely works at 2 mph- just for maneuvering a trailer into a parking spot while detached.

Your best bet is to design an unpowered trailer, and if weight allows to outfit it with batteries.

----> Then I have to worry about cooling systems for batteries , keeping batteries warm in winter, and a host of other issues Tesla has mostly solved already. and no ability to charge from Tesla superchargers. (Micheal Breem of EV West said it would be tough to do because you would have to avoid a salvage title, and keep the sensors in the car active so that it thinks it is intact to maintain supercharging ability.
  • Combining batteries on the go will be picky. There is the issue of software you can't rewrite to make it aware of a second battery pack, the wiring over the trailer hitch that you need to connect to your Model X battery pack and the consequences on drilling holes in the car and modifying high voltage wiring to support this. However, hooking up extra batteries on a trailer has been done on a Rav4 EV: See This Range-Extending Toyota-Tesla Trailer In Action
----> Combining batteries on the go is merely a 3rd or 4th Gen. wish list. I'd be fine currently with a Tesla pack that just was structural support for a trailer and offered more protection from the batteries from catching on fire during a crash. Apparently the battery pack casing is a major structural member and I saw these at EV West very solid - more so it seemed than the ones they used to have at Tesla Showrooms when they showed the skateboard chassis.
  • Designing your own trailer allows you to save weight on construction. A Model X is designed to protect passengers during a crash, while a trailer doesn't have those prerequisites. This means that you can trade weight of safety designs into more useful trailer features like kitchen area, sanitary and living spaces.

---> designing my own trailer is the PRIMARY focus of this thread. I don't believe I could design my own battery pack to outdo Teslas battery pack. I also don't think it would be realistic to think with limited means and software and without FEA experience I could structurally engineer it to be as strong given the exact same weight. More likely it would be weaker at the same weight.

I could certainly make something less strong , lighter weight. The idea is for a usable 1st. gen. 4 season trailer that meets criteria important for an ENTIRE CONTINUOUS season of winter use. In the event of sliding off the road and into a icy embankment I would think the Tesla Battery pack would suffer less of a chance of having to be flat bedded away and junked than a lighter weight (or heavier weight ) home-brew version. I would guess several hundred pounds of suspension and steering components are overkill as is the total strength of the pack. But given the option of something that is 20% overbuilt vs 20% underbuilt for a first prototype I'd rather have the over kill and see how that goes. I do understand that with the pack weighing so much it limits what is inside- more of a concern is how that limits my ability to distribute weight given the total weight of the furnishings and shell will be so much less than the pack itself.

But I foresee being able to do some innovative things - Like a passive solar water heater that can act like a thermal bank to help keep the batteries warm with residual heat.

I know you might not think it would help...but...for instance.

Sometimes I'll toss 2 MSR 10 Liter Dromedary water bags on the front Dash between the Thermal windshield shade and the glass. In the dead of winter without any car heat on during daylight these bags can get way too hot to use for a shower. Toss those under the down comforter at lunch and they give off heat all night long - and even after returning to the car in the late afternoon the FOLLOWING DAY they are still warm under the covers. Even a 6 liter MSR bag can do that. So with 100 + gallons of water you could create a thermal heat bank that might reduce some heating requirements for the pack, or at the very least reduce or even eliminate battery pack usage to heat the interior cabin at night even at 5 degrees Fahrenheit .

So for instance. Let's say you slept atop this water reservoir. And there was an thinner insulating open cell mattress pad with a construction akin to a camping Thermarest™ pad between you and a drilled foam topper. By increasing the air in the pad and insulating you from the hot water bank you could reduce the heating of the mattress by the reservoir . By deflating the pad you could increase the heat.

Sounds nuts right?

From actual camping experience:

I took the MX 90d went tent camping in Sequoia National Park in fall 35 degrees at night in 2017 . I brought a Exped Megamat Duo (77.75" x 52" full sized) and Exped Megamat 10 (77.75" long 30" wide)

https://www.campsaver.com/exped-meg...Hs4TBuBsjrBfzZB2dulUr2rr01jyNp-BoCVPAQAvD_BwE

Put together with 2 straps they were roughly a Eastern King Sized bed 76' x 80" vs (77.75" x 82") . Put a 3 inch cross drilled foam topper atop that (just because I had a person who wasn't into roughing it). Tossed the two MSR 10 Liter Dromedary bags full of 200 degree water between the Exped and the topper. Made dinner, showered by mixing some fo the water from one of the dromedary bags with cooler water in another. And we hopped into a toasty heated bed- that no one wanted to get out of. A single 10 liter bag could have heated the bed . To this day she says it was the most memorable comfortable night of sleep she has ever had (and there was nothing amorous either as we were both on our respective sides) . Granted the Megamat DUO and a full sized 2" topper would have provided about the same comfort of a luxury hotel bed.

https://www.amazon.com/Pure-Latex-Bliss-Response-Activefusion/dp/B00AAHZDU0

This was what was used.
Here is something that shows the drilled out foam that allows heat to permeate through.

https://www.amazon.com/Ultimate-Dre...YWHKQCVZ807&psc=1&refRID=BPDAT7MW8YWHKQCVZ807

And I'd like warmth and comfort like that in a travel trailer. The mattresses in them are never very comfortable. I would love to repurpose some of the seat heater circuits to heat the couches , recliner and the beds via the mobile app- why not heat a towel rack? Because we can.......it's electric.
 

JAG

Member
Oct 29, 2012
38
13
Newport Beach
I also feel it might be possible to make an Expanding travel trailer that has less insulation when expanded , and more multiple layers of insulation when compacted...ie thicker walls. And of course in Winter its more efficient to heat a smaller enclosed volume with less surface area- volume increases with the cube of the linear dimension. So the same heating BTU that might be fine for spring/fall might be only good for something much smaller in winter.

The best iteration for conversion might be Popping a Vixen 21' shell atop a salvaged Tesla and making an RV as opposed to trailer. Those have 4" of insulation as it is.
 

JAG

Member
Oct 29, 2012
38
13
Newport Beach
The hidden shower.
This link : Start at 8:45


I like that its is not a shower stall and is just an overhead cabinet and counter space. However. I would have changed out some materials. Probably used some sailboard Starboard material that won't be affected by moisture.


I would have side panels that both drop down from above and slide up from below and overlap and magnetically stick to make a hard sided shower stall on the sides and a bowed semi flexible retractable front shower door (they use them on RVs and they squeegee the door clean as they roll back and are surprisingly durable. He just didn't take it to the end where there is no wet curtain and a simple microfiber cloth could wipe it dry. The curtain could hide completely behind a folding flap. The counter could hinge off to the side and upwards to form one of the sides of the shower. The underside becomes part of the inward facing shower. In this way there are no free floating parts top fall over, get lost or damaged when being repurposed for outside use (its the exception). The shower head should stow in the top section completely hidden behind the drop down back wall. You an build this anywhere there is an overhead storage and a countertop. Ideally there should be no visible toilet, kitchen, bed, or shower so it can be used as a mobile office and taken as a deduction and considered as an office so it is not restricted by local ordinances.
 

ecarfan

Well-Known Member
Sep 21, 2013
19,198
13,851
West Vancouver, British Columbia

JAG

Member
Oct 29, 2012
38
13
Newport Beach
Camp 365

I said , to my GF it doesn't have any furniture, you could get inflatable furniture.

My GF jokingly said , "If you got that you may as well get yourself an inflatable girlfriend to go with your inflatable furniture. Kinda a camper for losers." and further, "What do they do to sleep? Do they have to sleep standing up like cows?" (because she saw the silhouettes of people inside standing up). She laughed so hard for so long at her joke she farted. No joke there. Oh my.

I think it might be good as a Mess tent. Or a fantastic quick set tent for tuning snowboards and skis in snowy weather.

On the other side of expanding hard sided tents. Here is another one that also doesn't meet insulation standards. But has a tremendous amount of set up and break down...+ things that should be done in a certain order . Odd things like you wouldn't likely lift cabinets FULL OF HEAVY FOOD into place, and filling the refrigerator would require partially setting up the camper, filling the fridge, folding the camper and then repeating...and likely the fridge won't work while folded so your best bet would be to pre-freeze lots of water bottles and maybe some Yeti ice and transfer them into the fridge prior to traveling to keep food from spoiling unless you wanted to bring a bunch of coolers too or only provision after you get to your camp site (rarely a good or convenient idea). Yeti Ice transferred periodically from the Freezer might help extend what ice did survive and make use of the other coolers if you didn't have a plug in car fridge.

During the set up you can see lots of light coming through sections as it is not airtight, and setting it up during a dusty windy or windy rainy night could mean a lot of wiping down required after it is all set up (not a huge deal as there isn't that much square footage but still..... I picked this longer video because its tries to show real set up time. however Trailmanor series might have less impact on energy consumption as it is lower when towed.


This one is a bit quicker to configure and a bit more stylish but again not insulated.

 
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JAG

Member
Oct 29, 2012
38
13
Newport Beach
This is the nicest thing I think we could tow with model X.

But the range likely be very curtailed like so many boxy things. It is however possible to design a slippery Brick...might be wired for 230 three phase.

Apparently they claim it is 4 season and the floor looks well insulated.

"Aerodynamically designed " though I will assume that that pic shown is not an actual wind tunnel shot. Both the 704 HP and the longer 754 DP might have better range as it not heavier.


https://www.newastella.com/storage/INT Astella 2020 02 WEB.pdf

Ground clearance....going up steep driveways sigh.
 

ecarfan

Well-Known Member
Sep 21, 2013
19,198
13,851
West Vancouver, British Columbia
I’m not convinced either that those very nice looking trailers by Astella are going to be particularly aerodynamic. But I love the styling! Not many details on the website. They are heavy: the smallest 25 ft model (excluding the tongue length) is over 5,500 lbs empty. They are manufactured in Croatia and the website only shows dealers in continental Europe. Maybe they will come to the US someday, I’d like to see one in person.
This is the nicest thing I think we could tow with model X.

But the range likely be very curtailed like so many boxy things. It is however possible to design a slippery Brick...might be wired for 230 three phase.

Apparently they claim it is 4 season and the floor looks well insulated.

"Aerodynamically designed " though I will assume that that pic shown is not an actual wind tunnel shot. Both the 704 HP and the longer 754 DP might have better range as it not heavier.
 

JAG

Member
Oct 29, 2012
38
13
Newport Beach
With Covid-19 we are seeing a huge uptick in travel trailer and RV sales. I went to the Airstream dealership in Huntington Beach, California and they were closed for covid-19 for a few months. Within days of reopening, they sold out of 95% of their inventory and presold a bunch more. Biggest sales numbers for any year they ever posted and that was just by June.

Hopefully we will see some ultra light trailers like the Adria Astella made here.
 

wooter

Nou ik heb niet te klagen over Tesla support
May 3, 2017
5,654
4,034
Belgium
The Astella looks awesome and it's not the most expensive large camper trailer I've seen.

I dream of trekking around with something like that.

However, European campings are kind of a letdown. You don't have much privacy, and such a luxury camper would quite look out of place next to a number of secondhand campers and tents, and multi coloured beach chairs.

An overview of 5 luxury caravans in Europe:

I have to admit that the Astella looks very sharp and fitting behind a Model X. The other models look bloated and campy.
 

Len_X_from VA

New Member
Oct 28, 2019
1
1
Winchester, VA
I bought MX with the idea of seeing the world. At the time of purchase sales associates at Fashion Island in Newport Beach CA said I would be able to put my MX in a shipping container and do the same with a travel trailer and tour Europe using my lifetime free supercharging.

As a test I've survived without a travel trailer in Model X in Colorado now for sevelral winters at Telluride, Aspen, Vail , Beaver Creek, Steamboat , Copper Mountain, Winter Park, Loveland, Park City, Mammoth, Snow Summit, Big Bear, June Mountain, Wold Creek etc, . I have it down to a science at this point. My need for a travel trailer is now more centered on a GF's diminished bladder size, and that there is really limited space for two peoples winter gear and clothing, and cooking in bad weather (wind, rain, snow) . Frankly I have the last part solved as well as showering, in 4 years of Tesla winter camping, I have never had to go even a single day without a fresh hot shower. I even have a way of putting a shower accessory kit in my Model X that heats the water using the cellphone app and allows for a fully wind protected shower that even a very tall person can stand up in.

But in terms of my European snowboard tour, I was misled by the sales associates at Fashion Island . . 3 phase charging in Europe will make this hard without additional electronics , supercharging accounts might not be global , and service won't work globally either, my warranty would be void if I bring the car to Europe, though X care has an extended warranty plan that currently works in the USA , Canada, and Mexico. Loss of Europe seems a shame because if any one car company could make this happen or still could make this happen it would be Tesla.

But let's not forget the idea of having some habitable space towed behind me. Towing just a bed in a tear drop seems silly. A shower and toilet is needed, and cooking would be nice.

I'm not sure I would bother with a travel trailer being solo. But car camping isn't for everyone,

I have tried 6 different types of mattresses, many different shower products, whether it's worth it to bring folding chairs, yeti cooolers (every size and type and combination ) Engel fiberglass coolers that keep ice for 2 weeks , 5 different types of stoves and different fuels at different temps and altitudes.

And I have looked at the WINTER ready travel trailers available to us , all the current models, visited the Bowlus factory, talked with ESCAPE, and Oliver , considered New airstreams , vintage airstreams , Avion, Silver Streak , Silver Stream, I am trying to avoid stick built trailers like Lance, and other options that won't last more than a decade or so before delamination , mold and other issues would mean it would have to be discarded.

And in the end.... nothing really works.

In an ideal world...I'd buy a salvaged tesla , mount a trailer on the skateboard platform that is collapsible so it can slip stream my Model X . Not even connect them with anything beyond safety chains , and use the fleet software of Tesla SEMI to make the trailer follow my car like networked Tesla Semi. Both would charge at the superchargers and in a perfect world while going downhill maybe the front Tesla would get regen from the rear to help balance out range.

Why do this? Because range from Supercharger to Supercharger would not be so impacted. If I could direct regen and perhaps transfer power between the two I could arrive at a campsite with a trailer full of charge, and then go off and recharge the lead car. Or in the case of making the entire trailer out of solar panels I could perhaps go into a more remote location, and then drop the trailer to charge up with sun and then charge the drive car too.

Today's travel trailers are a horrible design. As a trailer drops below 30 feet the living room area shrinks dramatically . At 26 feet the living room is a dinette abutting a couch, Abutting a kitchen , and finally abutting a bed. Below 22 feet you are towing a mattress up against a dinette and kitchen. Showers are uncomfortably cramped as are toilets. And nothing is there to take advantage of a FULLY ELECTRIC COACH.

All the collapsible travel trailers are unsuitably insulated for Colorado Winters.

And of course , paradoxically, tests in other threads show shorter tear drop trailers tow with higher energy usage per mile than longer trailers that weigh more but tend to be more aerodynamic with rounded corners and longer length.

A Bowlus 26' empty tin can with no insulation that costs as much as two Model X makes ZERO sense to me,

So much of the vintage trailers remind me of some grandmothers house with old quilts and dowdy upholstery.

Elòn Musk once said that trying to adapt the original roadster Lotus chassis was much more labor than if he built one from the ground up.

So instead a PURPOSE BUILT TRAILER FOR EVs needs to be built . There should be. Way to integrate their aerodynamic Envelopes into one.

...............

I have some awesome ideas.

The possibility of taking, long hot showers.

Most of the coach being living space and the kitchens and bathrooms only being set up as needed and being able to be set up in less than 30 seconds.

Radiant heated floors. ( far more efficient )

Solar hot water heat banks with heat exchangers.

Ways to control water heating remotely from your phone without having to load any new software.

A collapsible and expandible.trailer for improved aerodynamics that sets up quickly and is freeze proof. Modular to even allow storing in a garage.

Audiophile quality sound and a short throw projector that is both integrated into the trailer and can be brought outside to turn the side of your trailer into a mini drivein.

The option to remove water from the air using solar and battery power to extend boondocking.

Integrated washer dryer that operates mostly while charging.

New ways of managing refrigeration other than just relying on a refrigerator box which is too small and awkward in a small space.

The way I see it MODEL X in a shorter trailer version has the MX as the bedroom and the trailer as living room, kitchen bathroom . And in a longer version as a way to have a bed in the trailer with the option of using MX as a "guest bedroom " or just storage.

I wouldn't do this as a one off. But if enough were interested it could be a project worth doing. The other day I met a battery pack designer from Rivian , and I am very good friends with a former skateboard racer buddy who now owns EV West (seller of Tesla parts To convert ICE cars to EV) so Tesla drive trains and battery packs are available . I have access to a multi axis CNC milling machine with tool cassettes. As well as access to wooden lamination presses for snowboards and longboards . And a friend I used to coach , who sells 3 d printers. Other friends of mine have designed Wine refrigerators, I know which compressors to use that are very quiet, efficient, and reliable .

I don't want a stick built trailer. It should be aluminum or perhaps some combination of aluminum , and fiberglass and 3D printed pieces. Sections should be modular to allow for parts sharing.much of redundant walls and cabinetry walls should be eliminated. Insulation should be also part of the structural element,

Lastly , it might be nice if part of the collapsible part of this also allows for the tin can to be opened in good weather like a part of a wall that hinges to form at once an overhang and a bar.

Surfaces and furnishings should be easy to clean as dust and wind seems to conspire to make all RVs instantly dirty ina. Dust storm . I see seating surfaces made of one density foam for sitting in one side and softer foam for sleeping on the other. All cushions should have a slight overhanging skirt of about an inch to keep dust from getting under them.

I tend to design things to avoid problems before others even consider the problem from occurring, yet I don't over design for things which will never be problematic.

Anything considered for the coach should have multiple usage consideration . There should also be redundant systems without Adding ANY additional weight to cover some systems in case of failure, For instance an pair of separate induction cooktops could be used as two burners, or also for heating a water tank. Should one element fail the other could do double duty , and be easily inexpensively replaceable . The induction cooktops could be easily placed outside and be in weather proof containers which would allow for a shower or toilet set up more permanently in the space vacated by the kitchen (nice for boondocking). Or vice versa. (But don't leave kitchens out in Bear country). I just want people to feel free to utilize and configure their campsite to give them the most enjoyment for the least amount of effort.
The Canadian-built Alto A2124 is touted as the most aerodynamic trailer in its class and very lightweight with shower, toilet, king-sized bed and front dining area/double bed, full kitchen and good-sized fridge. The company is Safari Condo. Only 2,568 lb but $53,209 Canadian or $42,416 U.S. dollars. Scroll down to the alto A2124. Other cheaper models precede it. Alto – Lightweight Travel Trailers | Safari Condo
 
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Ocelot

Member
Jul 2, 2012
861
948
Canada
@JAG
Could you clarify/ expand on your current shower set up and toilet if u have one for the model x? Would dig having hot showered camping.
 

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