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15 Old School Campers that will take you Back in Time

15 Old School Campers that will take you Back in Time

– [Reacher] Vintage, classic,
or just plain old school, whatever you call them,
they’re the campers that paved the way for
everything you see today. In my last camper video, I took a look at some
up and coming models, but for this one, we’re going
in the opposite direction. I’m Reacher, and here are 15 vintage and classic campers from
the old school days. (gentle music) – Thank you for watching
Mind’s Eye Design. – [Woman] Number 15. – [Reacher] It might seem a bit cliche to start this list with an Airstream, but the manufacturer has been
a pioneer in the industry since the first factory opened in 1931. The Bubble was one of many models they produced through the years, having a four year run
that started in 1955. The 16 foot long aluminum clad trailer had everything needed for a leisurely trip starting with the full
size bed in the rear. Moving forward brings you to
a small dinette on one side having a sink and triple burner stove, while opposite that is
a closet and heater. The front of the trailer
houses an enclosed flush toilet to the immediate right of the entrance. Across from the entrance is the dinette with a small refrigerator
directly beside it that doubles as extra counter space. – [Woman] Number 14. – [Reacher] Vagabond started
its humble beginnings as a buggy manufacturer before culminating into a maker of travel trailers
and large mobile homes. Multiple models were made
throughout the lifetime of the trailer, running
eight or 10 feet wide and ranging in length from 35 to 54 feet. There were several floor
plans to choose from offering one or two bedrooms. Each one had some form of living room and different bathroom configurations, along with the standard kitchen which had a stove and oven,
sink and refrigerator, and finished birch paneling throughout. – [Woman] Number 13. – [Reacher] The images you see here are from restored trailers, staying true to the original design and offering a glimpse of the elegance that yesteryear had to offer. A large U shaped dinette took
up the front of the trailer, having a telescoping
table that allowed for it to be used as an extra sleeping area. A centrally located closet and counter sit opposite a stainless steel
kitchenette consisting of a triple burner cooktop,
sink and refrigerator. The main sleeper is a
full size bed in the rear sitting in an east to west configuration. Although short lived, the
company managed to produce approximately 120 trailers in two different models over its lifetime, with a rumored 25 still
in existence today. – [Woman] Number 12. – [Reacher] This one started
out in 1945 as Aljoa, but had to drop the letter A from the end due to Alcoa aluminum feeling it was too close to their brand name. This, like many other
trailers of the time, mimic the canned ham design, which made it easier to
construct as well as allowing for a more efficient
layout of the interior. The company produced several
models as well as switching to a more modern squared off
exterior in the mid 1960s. Each layout included a
dinette slash sleeper with a fold down table,
a small kitchenette with a stove, refrigerator and sink, as well as the option of a bed
in place of a second dinette. These period trailers are a
popular choice among enthusiasts hailing from the golden
era of the 50s and 60s. – [Woman] Number 11. – [Reacher] What began
in 1946 as a short lived teardrop trailer manufacturer reopened in 1948 with a
broader range of trailers that fell into the canned ham category. By the late 50s, the
company had moved toward a more standard squared off design reminiscent of the changing times, including models a few years later that offered an upper
level sleeping space. Multiple layouts offered
the standard features, having either a dinette
with a folding table and or a full length couch. The kitchenette included a stove with an oven, sink, and refrigerator. Are you feeling nostalgic yet? If so, feel free to give me a thumbs up and let me know in the comments which one of these are your favorite. – [Woman] Number 10. – [Reacher] The Scotty was initially built as a 16 foot long trailer, but had to be scaled back due to balance issues. This led to a redesign that
became a 10 foot long teardrop. The next step in the evolution was a 13 foot and 15 foot travel trailer that included a sink, stove, refrigerator, and small dinette with
room to sleep four people. Along the way, they even made a version that included all of the above amenities, as well as a wet bath and an
overhead bunk in the rear. – [Woman] Number nine. – [Reacher] The Cardinal Trailer Company was established by Adams
Manufacturing in 1951, starting a production
run that ended in 1977. In that time, the company offered trailers from 13 feet to 16 feet long, as well as a 10 foot long truck camper. Standard inclusions were
kitchenettes with a stove and or oven, a sink, and an
under the counter refrigerator. A full size bed was at
one end of the trailer, while the other end had a
dinette with more gaudy looking curtains than should be allowed by law. – [Woman] Number eight. – [Reacher] The first Apaches
were built in a garage in 1957 by Vesely Manufacturing. Fast forward to 1959, and they had become the world’s largest producer
of camping trailers. By 1963, the company offered
four different models with every year after
that leading to upgrades of existing models or a new
one added into the lineup. The standard pop up utilized
a telescopically raised roof with hard sides that lifted up and out to form the walls and areas for the beds. The smaller trailers included
a kitchenette and dinette, while larger models
offered a couch as well. – [Woman] Number seven. – [Reacher] Due to the design of this one, it’s commonly mistaken as a product of the Airstream Corporation. The Avion C-10 first
saw production in 1965, almost a decade after the company had been in the travel trailer business. It was the first of the truck bed models, with the larger C-11 coming
out a few years later. Each one was surprisingly
spacious for a truck camper, having an enclosed wet bath directly to the right of the entrance. Moving forward, you’ll find a kitchenette with a stove and oven, a
refrigerator, and a sink. The cab over provided
space for a full size bed, while the dinette,
which offered the choice of either a side or center placement, could convert to an extra bed as well. Contrasting the shiny look
of Airstream trailers, the Avion used an
unpolished anodized aluminum for increased durability. – [Woman] Number six. – [Reacher] This one started
out way back in the days of 1913 as a motorcycle
sidecar manufacturer. Then they tried their hand at
funeral cars and ambulances before settling on
making coaches and buses. One of these was called the Starliner, and it had a good run of about a decade starting in the late 50s. Not only were these used as
transit and inner city coaches, but many musicians chose to use modified versions as their mode of travel. These custom models offered
the standard amenities of modern day motor homes,
including a full kitchenette and dinette, a bathroom
with a stand up shower, and a private bedroom in the back. (gentle music) – [Woman] Number five. – [Reacher] In 1958,
industry pioneer Ray Frank built a unique motorized
RV from the ground up, bringing to the industry
the term motor home as the new moniker over the house car. Created from an all fiberglass body, it was available in 21 and 27 foot models. Each one offered a lounge area with a couch and dual recliners, a kitchenette having a double basin sink, microwave and refrigerator along with a four burner stove and oven, a large wet bath with an L shaped counter, and a separate bedroom in the rear. Although it wasn’t officially
a Travco until 1967, it had been around under
the Dodge Motor Home name for almost a decade. Unfortunately, due to rising
costs and competition, it was officially discontinued in 1979. – [Woman] Number four. – [Reacher] Say it with me one more time. Canned ham. The company started out in 1948 providing mobile home
trailers to the armed forces. After World War II ended,
they sold their products under the Cozy Cruiser brand before switching to Shasta in 1952. Offering models ranging
from 14 feet to 35 feet, they were easily recognizable
due to the distinctive wings that were added in the late 50s. By 1966, all of their
trailers had switched to the more modern squared off design. Regardless of size, most of the trailers offered the same amenities, having a stove and oven, stainless steel sink,
refrigerator, and microwave. A full size bed was standard fare, as well as a dinette and or bench seating. The company even produced
a cab over style model that offered a second full size bunk bed above the other one. (gentle music) – [Woman] Number three. – [Reacher] Introduced in
1976, the GMC Birchaven was a 23 foot long motor
home that was the epitome of luxury and styling in its day. The exterior carried the same
design as the other models, but the interior was
where the party was at. A front dinette that
converts to a twin bed sits directly across from the entrance. Two layouts were offered, one with a fully enclosed side wet bath, and one having a rear dry
bath with a step in tub. Depending on the layout, the kitchenette was either
directly to the left of the entrance or behind
the opposite dinette. This also offered different
sleeping accommodations, which could be a couch
across from the kitchenette, or a second dinette in the rear. All natural wood cabinets
and shag carpet throughout accented everything with a
range of exterior paint schemes that were color coordinated
with the interior. – [Woman] Number two. – [Reacher] Like many before, Glider offered multiple
models and layouts. Smaller models had the basic setup, while larger models had
that more in the form of a living room at one end
with a full size kitchen offering a four burner stove and oven, a twin bowl sink, and a six
cubic foot refrigerator. Moving back brings you
to an enclosed wet bath with a full size bed opposite that. Taking up the rear of the trailer are further sleeping accommodations in the form of a set of bunk beds. – [Woman] Number one. – [Reacher] Manufactured by Eccles, a pioneer and leader in industry standards since they first started in 1919, the caravan measures almost
16 and a half feet long and six and a half feet wide, having a dry weight around 3800 pounds. A raised lantern roof
provides added headroom while also providing extra ventilation via a series of hinged
windows along the top. A bed at one end can extend from a one to a two person sleeper if needed, while the other end of the
trailer has a sitting area that lays flat to serve as a second bed. In between is a full
length wardrobe on one side with a coal burning stove
and oven combo opposite that. No expense was spared, as you can see through the extensive use of
hardwoods, decorative glass, nickel and chrome plated
hardware, and the steel exterior. So did any of these bring back memories? Feel free to let us know about your way back in the day
camping stories in the comments, and which of these you
were taking a trip in. As a side note, finding
verifiable information on vintage stuff is somewhat daunting, so if there’s something on here
that you think is incorrect, feel free to hit me up in
the comments and let me know. If this gave you the camping bug, feel free to check out our other camper videos in our playlists. Once again, I’m Reacher, and
we’ll see you on the next one. – Hi everyone, and thank you for watching. I’m Charnee with Mind’s Eye Design. – Hey guys, this is Cassie. I hope you guys enjoyed this video. – We love to hear your feedback, so please leave some comments
below and let us know your favorite from this
video, and why you liked it. – Also, if you haven’t done so yet, make sure to hit the bell notification next to the subscribe button. – But don’t leave yet, keep
watching, because there’s more. (uplifting music) – Now I’m definitely not
gonna take away from the time and effort that gets
put into these videos by everyone that works on
them from beginning to end. We definitely need to
high five those guys. – [Male Presenter] These days,
leaving civilization behind to reconnect with nature doesn’t
mean you have to sacrifice the modern luxuries of technology. – For more information on this product, the link is in the description below. – The videos are always
written out with a script, we wanna know what we’re gonna say. – [Male Presenter] By designing innovative and environmentally friendly, we balance beauty with modern technology. – Thank you for watching
Mind’s Eye Design. (gentle music)

100 thoughts on “15 Old School Campers that will take you Back in Time

  • Add a vintage Hi-Low Trailer! Ours was purchased in 1963 in Johnstown, PA and we camped across the country to Ridgecrest, CA! 2 adults, 4 children! In the smallest model available! Lol

  • My Dad bought a Yellow/white Shasta when we were stationed in Roswell,NM in the early ‘50s. Three kids, mom and dad went all over the Southwest and off to Kansas a couple of times to visit family. Very fond memories.

  • Great memories !
    My Grandparents had a series of Scotty's !
    Always recognized the Shasta's going down the road, by their signature wings of course !
    We could never afford the Airstreams, but we always drooled over then !
    I currently own a very rough 1976 GM motorhome, that is ready for a major restoration !
    Now then folks,
    Reacher, you're included in this,
    as a kid, we had a fiberglass
    ClamCamper, it slid in the back of our station wagon, very much like a truck camper.
    I would love to be able to find any kind of information on the ClamCamper if possible !
    Anyone who has any memory of it, or photos of it,
    Please, let me know !
    Thanks Reacher !
    Great video !

  • I'd trade my second born for number 1. That is awesome.
    Nobody would really want my second born (16 year old male) but it's worth a shot. Lol

  • I don't know what the mystery camper was, but see a lot of people calling you "Reacher." Is your name Richard or Reacher? Old and confused…. hope you are having a great weekend.

  • I had a Apache tent trailer that flipped out three ways , We camped all over Alberta and BC , We even had a bear steal our food , Happy days,,,, thanks

  • Never owned a traveling home. But if I ever were, it has to have a proper bathroom. Everyone makes a bed and kitchen, not everyone can get a bathroom right. 😉

  • What a fantastic video. The walk down memory lane and the recording of history itself is AWESOME. Thanks

  • My Dad built and maintained 3 trailer parks in Oregon. I remember most of these renting spaces in the parks and a few are still there.

  • The Starliner's amazed me as a kid. To me, the only cool looking motorhome.
    That full sized 1950's era Glider really looks like the one used in The Long Long Trailer movie, with Lucy and Ricky.

  • Don't forget the Fleetwood bounder . Best rv ever created by the dumbass mankind. Before they got run over by it.

  • I saw video on YouTube of a couple that was denied entry into a trailer park because there RV was too old, but it was a gorgeous classic Airstream in perfect condition. The trailer park just looked at the age.

  • Great video these campers all looked pretty classy. Loved the polished aluminium ones and the motor homes the most. 👍👍👍

  • I think that the Vagabond is my pick. Although the GMC Motorhome is almost a tie. The thing that I like about the Vagabond is the 8 foot width and simple luxury with birch paneling.

  • Ok I’m going to take a shot at the trivia and say it’s the Vixen 21, which actually was produced from 1986 to 1989, and although it was built in Pontiac Michigan it came with a BMW in-line 6 cylinder turbo Diesel engine.

  • I loved this series, enjoyed it, great stuff, I was wondering how those early RV fridges worked, were they just ice boxes, or powered like today?

  • We have a restored 1972 Vintage Hunter Trailer. My Nephew made a short video, posted on our channel, showing the unique features…a pop top roof. There aren't many Hunters remaining in use — kind of cool. From your video, I always like the Teardrops.

  • The simple little Airstream Bubble works for me. My rig is a Class B and I wish it were layed out like the Bubble.

  • Your mystery RV is a Vixen21. It came in either gas or diesel. It was the brainchild of a former GM engineer whose name escapes me at the moment (Jim something, if I'm not mistaken) who wanted to create the most efficient RV practicable for couple with a couple of children or occasional guests. The gas version (pictured on the right above) had a raised fixed roof with about 6 1/2' of headroom at the highest point. It was powered by a Buick 3.8 V6 with a modified FWD automatic transaxle in the rear and could achieve an honest 22 MPG at 70 MPH. The diesel version (on the left above) was the real gem. It had a side-hinged pop-top which gave it nearly 7' of head room when raised )and great natural light). It was powered by a straight 6 BMW TDI linked to a 5-speed manual (with an extremely tall 1st gear which tended to eat clutches) and got an amazing 31 MPG at 70. Both version had a full queen-size bed in the rear,wet bath (shower) and galley. The third variant not shown was a dedicated limousine without the galley and shower. The low center of gravity and forward control made them handle more like sports cars that RVs. Well over half of all built are still on the road.

  • My folks had a couple of Apache trailers in my youth. They were the fold out tent type with canvas, telescoping bowstruts and an aluminum box body with four tip down doors for the compartments. I'm thinking they were the "Scout" and "Chief", models. The first one, the Scout, had a zippered door on the tongue side of the tent, legs with feet that telescoped down for stability and leveling. The Chief model had a zippered door out the side of the tent with an awning that extended out from that. The top of the "box" had a foam mattress where mom and dad slept and the compartment doors hinged down for access to the top bed and sleeping compartments for small children, (like me at the time). 🙂 The whole thing was rather light weight and aerodynamic considering it was towed usually by a pontiac stationwagon. We could sleep the whole family, two adults and six kids quite easily in the camper. It broke my heart when dad fell asleep behind the wheel and had a near accident on the highway. The Chief was destroyed when it broke away and rolled over. 🙁 My dad was so enamored with the brand, that he tried his hand at selling them. It didn't work out though because my dad just wasn't the schmoosing make a deal kind of guy. Very low b.s. tollerance. LOL

  • Beautiful old RVs. I'm still holding out for you to do one that includes the Barth motor home. It has an interesting story, and it's a wonderful RV.


  • I'm currently renovating a'74 Silver Streak. The solid build & simplicity of the rig amazes me. Thanks for sharing the oldies. 👍

  • I live in a 1963 30 ft Stream Line trailer- I’m learning that this ain’t for everyone- haha- ugh. I paid $5400.00 for – now I’m into it for about $18,000.00 – W0W- old trailers can drive you crazy- tiny houses- I’ll Pass-

  • After I got out of the USAF in the late 70's I lived in a Serro Scotty for a few months, so that is my favorite here. However when I decided it was time to get a camper trailer, I built myself a teardrop to my own design, I call it the XE1.

  • My buddy had an Avion C10 back before he passed away. Thanks for adding it to the list it brought back fond memories

  • You never said what the two odd ones were. I was curious. I have an old Cardinal trailer and all I can say is formaldahyde chokes me and makes me itch. Maybe someday I will gut it and put some nice wood in it. Right now it is parked away from the house. Those all look cool but I am sure I would choke to death if I went inside one of them. Nice eye candy. Not so curiois about the other two now thinking about choking.

  • The first Airstream show or the Shasta have to be my favorite. Okay Eccles Show has got to be one to die for. It is amazing.

  • I remembered the white camper before the 2nd camper shown. It was a camper designed by BMW – it may have been a concept initially then made for the public. Very Cool!

  • I bought a 1964 Shasta trailer in the mid 1990's I was the 2nd owner it was well taken care of. 10 year's later I had to sale it because I lost storage and I really didn't want to sale it but had no where to keep it was really nice trailer I'll always have the memory of it my 2nd home.

  • Could you do a video on the Clark Cortez?

    It was the first front wheel drive Motorhome and was used by NASA to house astronauts.
    How many are left?
    I have a 1966 model.

  • I remember a lot of those because I worked as a RV repair technician from '85 to '08. There used to be a style made with truck cab and chassis. They looked kind of like a truck with a huge slide-in camper in the bed, but the bed of the truck wasn't used and they probably extended the rear of the chassis/frame.
    I saw one a man had made himself, out of a dump truck cab and chassis. It was pretty awesome. He said he liked it because it had no problem pulling his large boat up in the mountains.

  • I grew up in the sixties. What we saw most on the road were the Shastas, the Holiday Ramblers, and the Serro Scotty. Mobile Scout was another popular brand. Virtually never saw pickups pulling trailers.

  • I loved the caravan. It was reminds me of the old gypsy horse-drawn caravans. And the Shasta evoked memories of a family vacation that I took as a small child.

  • The no 1 eccles showman wagon could make a great van. I want to do just that. I seen one of these once in the uk . So there still around. I want to build a van varient.

  • The Mystery Camper … was that a Peugeot?, I'm rehabbing a 63' Mainliner that was built by the same guy as the Lo-Liner

  • Wow, my grandfather would stop a couple days after summer break started and would say c'mon lets go camping. Where? I would ask, and he would say I don't know yet. Off we would go in his Chevy Caprice with the "Apache" camper attached. He would bring me home a couple of weeks before school started. Thanks for showing the "Apache" it sheltered us in twenty or so different states from 4th grade to the 7th grade…..

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