EDITOR’S NOTE: The following blog was written by John Gunnell, owner of Gunner's Great Garage Restoration Shop in Manawa, Wisconsin. Gunnell regularly contributes articles and industry-driven observations for THE SHOP magazine and eNewsletter.
Several shops that restore old cars have been getting requests to redo travel trailers that match the era of the vintage cars. The motivation for this new business segment is the Tin Can Tourist sections that are being incorporated into the traditional hot rod shows now being held across the county.
Enthusiasts find old trailers sitting in a barn that are basically in good shape. Then, they want them to look new again, but they usually want them to be redone in the same colors as the old cars they pull the trailers with. Naturally, the trailers also get gangster whitewall tires, extra chrome trim and shiny full wheel covers so they look as snazzy as the 1950s cars they ride behind on the road.
A more recent sign that the vintage camper trend is really catching on is the evolution of events just for retro RVs themselves. For example, Vintage Trailerfest 2018 is scheduled for June 1-2, 2018 at Bear Lake Campground in Manawa, Wisconsin.
Vintage Trailerfest 2018 will be a first-time event and the public is invited to see the vintage trailers. The trailer owners are also being encouraged to sell collectible items at their camping spaces, as a tie-in with a Manawa Community Rummage Sale planned for the same weekend.