Relaxshax's Blog

Scott Rath’s “Hunting Shack Thingy”- a recycled camper
January 16, 2011, 8:45 am
Filed under: Uncategorized

‘Got a cool email from another person who had purchased my book “Humble Homes, Simple Shacks..” a ways back- a guy by the name of Scott Rath. The “cabin” is certainly unprofound, but that’s the whole idea! It was also a free acquisition- showing that a getaway cabin doesn’t have to cost you an arm and leg, or years of your own time- with a truck-bed camper, you just dump it on site, and voila!- you’re more or less ready to go.

Scott sent me a few photos and this write-up:

Its obviously a truck camper and it was destined for the scrap heap.  I decided to move it to a “cliff” over looking the Black Cat Creek on one of my farms here in Iowa.  Set it on cement blocks and tied it down with fence posts turned stakes.  Painted it with Kilz to block the 70’sish paint job and then a dark brown/green top coat that makes it blend in unless you walk up on it.

I’m working on gutting the interior to make an area for me and the kids to get out of the weather when we’re on the farm. Total cost so far is about $40 for paint and I’d expect I’ll be able to do the rest for zero.

Like you, I’m all about the low budget/salvage projects.  Love the blog.

-Scott Rath


Another great, simple idea as I’ve seen several campers and rvs GIVEN away on craigslist. My own neighbor has his 1970s camper parked in his backyard (solely used for storage now) but he mentioned that long ago (when it was in better shape) he almost sold it for $1000 (but wouldn’t let the guy cart it away with his very undersized, unsafe, vehicle.) These days a camper like his could be purchased for close to nothing, then fixed up- or merely salvaged for materials, windows, and its micro-appliances.

The moral of this blather- take a look around for a FREE shelter/camp alternative if you’re tight on time and money, with a little creativity, you just might stumble upon something fitting enough.

My only suggestion to Scott: Add a small deck and a roof overhang in the front, so as to extend the living space of this camper/tiny home to the outdoors. A single wide-capped railing one side of the deck could also serve as a micro-table while cooking/dining as well. You could also fashion the lightweight corrugated roof so that it swings down to block and lock up the camper’s door for security measures….

-Derek “Deek” Diedricksen


5 Comments so far
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Great suggestions! This is such a cool idea…

Comment by MJ

I love the paint color. Our camper trailer was painted camouflage when we got it. If it ever needs a new paint job, I may try to mimic his color choice.

Comment by Lisa

instant cabin I have tried to convince my kids to give this a go instead of spending so much for rent.You can get these all day on craigs list for $200 to $500 . Also look at my video for the microhomestead to see a drop down roof slash security cover it’s metal over 1×3 frame on a hook and eye hanger.Covered porch by day look up barrier by nite. Great stuff keep it commin Deek.

Comment by kevinsmicrohomestead

I’ll check the vid kevin- I have the same idea in one of my book designs, but have never applied it yet….but hey, its gotta work.

Comment by relaxshax

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