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Old 06-12-2012, 05:19 PM   #1
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2012 28' International
Alameda , California
Join Date: May 2010
Posts: 39
Vestibule or Mud room outside door

I am seeking advice or direction on building an exterior vestibule for the 28' International. I'll be boondocking in a high desert that can be very dusty, windy, and hot. I was thinking of creating an entrance room that we can take all our dirty clothes and shoes off and then enter the trailer.

The entrance room would need to be strong enough to handle wind (more than the awning can handle) and help seal out dust. This could also be good for winter but not main intent. It would also need to be removable for towing (duh) and not to bulky.

Has anyone done this or have some advice?

I'm new to posting here and happy to join fellow airstreamer's.

Thanks so much.

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Old 06-12-2012, 06:29 PM   #2
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battle ground, , Washington
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haven't done this, but in my mind some kind of tent that has anchors and a resilient construction would fit the bill. the transition from near nudeness into the trailer might be a little dicey, but who cares? If ya seen one, ya seen 'em all.

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Old 06-12-2012, 06:39 PM   #3
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mt. Prospect , Illinois
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Pop up awning, like an e-z up, with side curtains and tie downs. You don't want it up against the trailer, or it will scratch it as it moves with the wind.
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Old 06-12-2012, 10:44 PM   #4
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Neat idea... how about modifying the hoop greenhouse idea?

If for winter the trick of having the outer entrance lower than the living area might go a long way in keeping peace by trapping 'in' the heated air bubble.

JC Whitney has a camping tent that has a snorkel fabric extension to connect to a hatchback car, looking at that the fiberglass poles arched over lower solid ponywalls with nylon or tarp snapped down might work and compensate for unlevel ground too.

This outfit is spendy enough maybe the link is for ideas only.

WeatherShield Covered Walkway/Connect-A- Building - FarmTek

To be modular, collapsible and lightweight... maybe scan craigslist for a lightly used 10'x20' tarp shelter for $75 and then modify the tube frame to suit and tension new tarp material over it? Just remember Polyethylene can not be glued it has to be heat welded, not difficult just a bit of hassle, as is doing your own grommets with reinforced backings, etc..

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Old 09-22-2013, 09:09 AM   #5
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High desert... sounds like Burning Man to me. I was thinking of the same arrangement of a mud room myself. The RV gets a bit trashed with all the dust. I'll include any info I can dig up also. Good luck.

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Old 09-22-2013, 04:54 PM   #6
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Palm Coast , Florida
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PahaQue makes a side tent for the T@B trailer that is basically a three sided tent and attaches with a keder rope to a rail on the front of the trailer. They also make a screen room to work with teardrop trailers. I know those wouldn't work but their site might give you some design ideas.
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Old 11-28-2013, 06:03 AM   #7
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An inflatable structure might be worth exploring , see website attached.

M2 flame retardant custom-made inflatable tent
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Old 01-04-2014, 01:15 AM   #8
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I find nailing down an old tapestry carpet on the playa outside the door does about as good as something more complicated. 20 penny or larger spikes, reused concrete snap ties work perfect. Use lemonade can lids for a washer. I've had good luck holding down the ZipDee with ratcheting tie downs tied to the wheels or stabilizer; even in the highest BM dust storms.
I admit to being powerless over housecleaning and social niceities
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Old 03-02-2014, 10:06 PM   #9
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Alameda , California
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Yes for burning man! It's the playa dust and it is not sand but fine powder. It can get everywhere.

So far without an outside "clean room" or decontamination chamber before the door we have done well keeping the inside relatively dust free with a couple simple solutions. Don't go in and out when the wind is blowing hard. Second, have everyone remove shoes and strip down before coming inside (we do have zip up one piece jumpers for you).

Having a large carpet or astro turf outside helps a ton too. We have plastic storage bins for all the clothes and shoes.

Have to applaud the airstream windows and recirculating air conditioning for keeping the fine dust out. We also use paper and painters tape on all the floors and lower areas inside.

Ideally, an outside tent type structure that connects with bungee cord inside a sleeve to the trailer would be the best. Allowing the door to open and the awning to be deployed. We like the inflatable tent idea and a three-sided tent we could modify. Thank you.
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Old 03-03-2014, 07:19 AM   #10
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Midland , Texas
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Very interesting thread, a shelter frame fabricated of 1" to 1 1/2" pvc pipe with canvas or poly fabric attached with screws or grommets might work. We used to make trade show signs like this. They were very light and durable. The signs were actually sewn and sleeved to slide over the pvc pipe, then the corners and stand was made from tees and elbows. Definitely a subject to provoke thought. Attaching to the trailer might be the problem. Also has to be light, sturdy, transportable, and reasonable priced.
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Old 03-04-2014, 10:34 AM   #11
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I haven't given up on the inflatable tent thing but it may have to be custom made. Inherently I distrust anything with a metal frame close to my aluminium - (Can.) ;-}.
If our glacier ever melts we will get out and visit that manufacturer.

PVC may work OK too.
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Old 07-06-2017, 01:46 AM   #12
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los angeles , California
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did anyone ever build a vestibule for their Airstream? I'm thinking the same thing this year for That thing in the Desert. I was thinking perhaps fabricate from some type of nylon fabric or reinforced styrofoam insulated panels...but don't want to ruin the look of my airstream in the process. Thoughts?
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Old 07-07-2017, 11:58 AM   #13
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2005 30' Land Yacht 30 SL
Moose Jaw , Saskatchewan
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FYI - There two types of inflatable structures ,
1. continuous air supply = childrens play structures 'bouncy castles'
2. inflate once = like a air mattress

There are manufactures all over the world, all are expensive, you will have to get what you want custom made - of either type .
I researched a inflatable hail protection structure because our A/S has been wiped out twice, cheaper getting it fixed !

Some to try:

Good Luck
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Old 07-07-2017, 12:41 PM   #14
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2017 30' Classic
Carlisle , Pennsylvania
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Having done the "tent thing" for a lot of years .... wind and rain are the two big issues. A wet tent is a mess. Anchoring a tent so it does not blow away is not quite as easy as you might think. Being in sand or sandy soil makes that part a bit worse.


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