The result of fortitude and skill common among garage-tinkerers of the ’50s, this Homemade kit trailer arrived on Reparadise’s lot in need of extensive work.
But, it didn’t take long for this vintage camper’s original, high-quality aluminum exterior and Art Deco lines to have it earmarked for a food-vending future in Hawaii. Before we even listed the Homemade, its masked potential piqued the interest of a client and a plan quickly developed to make the little trailer a standout at the Polynesian Cultural Center’s food court.
This included special materials and construction to resist Honolulu’s tropical savannah climate and preserving the vintage camper’s well-earned patina. To prep the vintage Homemade camper for commercial use, we took it down to the chassis for extensive reinforcement to support appliances the original kit designers had no intention of ever using.
Worth noting during the dismantle, among the usual wasp nests, rodent poop, and rot, a resourcefulness not present on production vintage trailers like Shasta and Airstream came up more than once. By far, our favorite ’50s suburban-garage solution was a period-correct Simonz polishing tin used to frame the water inlet.
However, like the nests, poop, and rot, the vintage polishing tin wouldn’t make into this campers remodel. In fact, we completely rebuilt the wall framing with pressure treated lumber and insulated it with closed-cell foam to counter Hawaii’s insects and climate.
To ensure safe travels, the Homemade Kit trailer now rides on a six-thousand pound axle with brakes. And, to guarantee a stable platform, four leveling jacks steady the unit for service. All of the handpicked appliances serve an exact requirement specific to the Polynesian fair this trailer will dish out. For maintenance, electrical’s run outside the easy-to-clean FRP walls, and appliances are on casters to simplify the scrub-down process.
We’re glad to see the Homemade Kit Trailer find a second chance at providing smiles, and look forward to visiting it on a Hawaiian vacation.