Back in August Grisela and I decided to get a camper so we can start traveling around Costa Rica more. We live right in the center of the country, in San Carlos, so we usually only get to the beach one or two times a year. The good thing is that it takes us about the same time to get to the Caribbean as it does to get to the Pacific.
After looking at a lot of options like old school buses (Skoolies), Volkswagen buses, and truck bed campers, we decided to go with a camper trailer. This way I don’t have one more car to keep running and to pass RTV every year. In our search, we even drove all day to look at a Vanagon in Monteverde that unfortunately wasn’t in good enough shape for what we needed.
Finally, Grisela found a guy in San Ramon that builds horse trailers and food carts. We contacted him and he did have some samples of cargo trailers that were in the style we were looking for. So we drove 2.5 hours to see his shop and the next week we designed up plans and gave him a deposit to get started.
This is where the trouble started. The build was supposed to take two weeks (an overly aggressive timeline if you ask me) ended up taking nine weeks. When we did finally get the trailer delivered there were some minor issues with it but nothing to get upset over. Basically, we had to rip out the vinal floors as the glue wasn’t drying. Then get the wet glue off the metal floors, dry it out and paint it with an anticorrosive paint.
Through all this, the camper smelled really bad. We tried washing it with soap and water to no effect. Finally, I bought some baking soda and poured it all over the floors and let it sit overnight. Then we cleaned it again with a water and vinegar solution. That helped a lot with the smell and placing new rubber flooring on top has all but fixed the smell issue.
I was told that I would need a B2 license to drive the trailer in Costa Rica. So we went to the DMV and I was told that if the car and trailer were under 4,000 kilos combined, then there was no need for another license. My Trooper is about 1,500 kilos and the trailer is around 500, so we are well under the 4,000-kilo limit.
As of this writing, there is one more thing I need to do before I can drive the trailer on the road. That involves getting my Trooper wiring fixed so it will connect to the trailers brakes lights.
After that, we will throw in our camping equipment and it’s off for an adventure!