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19 January 2015

Meet Scamper, Our 13' Scamp Travel Trailer Home

As a result of our post on our initial thoughts about living in our 13' Scamp travel trailer full-time, we've had some requests to see what she looks like up close. I imagine that's because most people think it's pretty darn crazy that two people are living in a 65 square feet travel trailer and they want to see pictures of our tiny house on wheels just to see how insane we really are!

So here you go - let's take a tour so that you can meet our little Scamper. We'll start off with a description of the layout and options we chose. If you're not the market for a Scamp or Scamp fanatic, then you may find it boring. In that case, feel free to scroll down to see the pictures.

Our Layout & Options

Originally, we looked for a used Scamp, but it proved impossible to find one, especially with all of the options that we wanted. Scamp seems to have a cult like following and it really is a seller's market. A Scamp will come on the market one day and be sold by the next. So, in the end, we decided to buy new. That enabled us to get the options that we wanted. But because we wanted a Scamp in a hurry, we ended up getting one that had been partially built, which meant that we got some options we wouldn't necessarily have chosen, but were glad we got in the end. 

There are three sizes of Scamp travel trailers - 13', 16' and 19'. We're limited by how much we can tow with our Nissan Pathfinder, so we went with the 13'. When they say 13', that's measured from the end of the tongue to the rear bumper. That means that the length inside is actually less than 13' - more like 10'. The width inside is around 6'5", which gives you a whopping 65 square feet of living space. 

With the standard 13' Scamp, you have two layout options. One with bunk beds and one with a shower/toilet combo and cupboards at the front. Come back on Wednesday to read our post about being desperate for a toilet in New Orleans, then you'll know that having a toilet is a pretty important thing for middle aged folks like us! Both options have a kitchen area to the left hand side and a cupboards to the right hand side near the door. The back of the Scamp is where the dinette is located. It cunningly converts into a bed at night. Or stays up as a bed all day and night if you're feeling lazy. 

There are two sizes of beds available - the standard one (46") and a wider one (54"). The Scamp we ordered had already been configured for the wider bed, so that's what we got. And I'm so glad that we did! We both can fit comfortably on the bed. I can't even begin to imagine how cramped it would be in the smaller one.

There is a more expensive deluxe wood version of the 13' Scamp available, but we're not really deluxe people, so we went with standard. You can see pictures of all of the layout options on the Scamp website here

Scamp's pricing structure is to give a base price for a pretty basic travel trailer. Anything else you might want is extra - and those extras do add up. But because we were buying new, we figured we might as well get the options now that we wanted rather than regretting it later. Some of the big things we added were:


  • Air Conditioning (we haven't used it yet, but I know we'll be glad we have it when the weather finally warms up)
  • Propane Furnace (which we use all the time because the weather has been disappointing, to say the least)
  • Fridge (it comes with an icebox as standard, but after living on a boat without a fridge, getting one was pretty important to me)
  • Awning (we've only used this a couple of times - makes things seem so much homier when it is up)
  • Front Porch Light (a porch light comes standard on the side, but we also wanted one at the front so you can see the propane tanks, hitch etc in the dark)
  • TV Antenna & Cable Hook-Up (we don't have a TV, but maybe one day we will - anyone out there using a 12 volt one?)
  • Reading Lights (you get a light over the kitchen space and and side of the upper kitchen cabinets, but they don't really illuminate the dinette are that well, so I'm glad we got two extra lights underneath our side cabinets)
  • Extra Propane Tank (nothing worse than running out of propane when you're camping in the boonies, having a spare tank brings peace of mind)
  • Extra 120v Outlets (we have one underneath one of the dinette seats and one outside; turns out we don't really use them, so maybe we could have done without)
  • Grey Water Tank (I'm not really sure why this isn't standard, seems like a no brainer that everyone would want and need one of these)
  • Bike Receiver Hitch (we don't have bikes just now, but they're on our wish list)
  • Water Heater (we haven't used this either, guess we're just too used to making do with cold water from our sailboat days)
  • Back Splash (we weren't planning on ordering this, but had to take it as it had already been built in; glad we got it as I can't imagine cleaning cooking spills off of the "rat fur")
  • Vinyl Floor (carpet comes standard, which to my mind is a nightmare to keep clean)
  • Fantastic Fan (great for ventilating the Scamper, because condensation can be a problem)
The one option we didn't get, which we regret, was a 12 volt charger. Scott will install one at some point.

Exterior

Here's what she looks like on the outside. Scamp travel trailers have a hard shell made out of fiberglass. They make the shell in two molds - one for the top part and one for the bottom - and then attach the two together in the middle. You can see the metal belly band in the photo below where the two pieces are joined. You can also see our A/C unit and TV antenna on top, as well as our awning.



Here's what Scamper's two propane tanks look like. The tube over the propane tanks is where our sewer hose is stored (you know the icky thing you connect to empty your grey and black water tanks). A 10' hose comes standard. Turns out 10' sometimes isn't long enough. So we bought a 20' hose which won't fit inside the tube. We'll need to figure out another solution. You can also see the gravel shield which protects the front window from damage while being towed. Underneath the gravel shield is the optional front porch light.



We have six windows on our Scamper - two on each side by the dinette, a larger one at the rear, two smaller ones over the stove and in the bathroom, and one in the door. We also get light in through the hatch for the fan on the roof. 



In this picture, you can see the panels for the various systems. The bottom larger white one is how you access the fridge controls so that you can choose whether you want to power it with propane, run it off of the battery or through shore power (i.e., being plugged in). The small metal panel to the right of the upper which panel is for the furnace ventilation. Below that are the cable hook-up and where you connect a hose so that you can tap into city water. To the far right is the panel where you access the hot water heater. Scamper's umbilical cord (aka her electric plug) is to the right of the hot water heater panel. It is a 25' long cord - I wish it was longer. But that's probably a story for another day. The connections for the black and grey water tanks are underneath Scamper - black on the left and grey on the right. On the back of Scamper is where you fill the fresh water tank.



Interior

Okay, enough of what Scamper looks like on the outside, let's have a look at what she looks like inside. When you walk in the door, the first thing you see is the kitchen area. Pretty basic - a two burner propane stove and a sink. The sink came with a cutting board cover which is useful in providing some extra counter space. However, it doesn't fit all that securely, so you have to be careful using it, otherwise it can slip and things will spill everywhere. I know from personal experience about this one! In terms of the stove, I wish it was one of those self igniting ones. I hate having to use a lighter to get it lit. It can also be a bit fiddly in terms of turning down the heat low without extinguishing the flame. There isn't that much usable space - you can fit a few things behind the stove by the window and around the sink, but that's about it. (I have no idea where those polar bears on the sink came from - they seem to pop up everywhere.)

You can also see the silverware drawer below the stove and these strange brown racing stripes that I think are supposed to be decorative. If we had known about the stripes, we would have asked them not to put them on. To the left of the sink on the side, you can just make out the thermostat for the furnace, the 120 volt outlet and the water pump switch.



Underneath the stove and sink are our furnace and fridge, plus a tiny little cupboard which has a 120 volt outlet in it which the fridge is plugged into. Not much room for much else. Most folks would think our fridge is tiny (1.9 cubic feet), but it's plenty big enough for us. Sometimes, we use our ice cooler for extra cold storage - like for that all important beer.



Above the stove and sink are two cabinets which we use to store our dishes and pots and pans. When you live in a tiny house on wheels, you only have room for a few things so we just have one pot, one frying pan and enough dishes and glasses for two people. If you get a dinner invitation from us, can you bring you own plates?



To the rear of Scamper is our dinette/bed area. Here's what it looks like with the table set up. The table folds down at night and lays on a groove on each side of the dinette seats. Because we have the wider bed, we have an extra board which slots into the grooves next to the table. During the day, there really isn't any good place to store this extra board. We've been putting it the grooves under the table and using it to store our bedding on. The only problem is that you lose some space underneath the table for your legs. For the Scamps with the standard bed, I think they have a longer table which is the sole support for the bed. So, they don't have an extra board to worry about during the day, but then they're more cramped at night.



The dinette seats have two cushions each - one on the bottom and one on the back. The back cushions get placed on the table and extra board at night to make up the "mattress" for your bed.



In terms of storage space, we have two side cabinets above the dinette. We also wanted a rear cabinet, but because we got A/C, there wasn't room for it. You're only supposed to store lighter items in the upper cabinets as they don't have the support that some of the other cabinets have. You can see the optional reading lights that we got attached to the bottom this cabinet. They swivel all around so you can direct the light where you want it.



We also have cabinets next to the outside door. We use one of the cabinets as a pantry and one to store miscellaneous stuff like cleaning supplies. There's a fire extinguisher mounted on the side of cabinets and a CO2 detector below them. Again with the racing stripes. What were they thinking?



Here's what the door looks like from the inside. It has a pin so that you can lock yourself in at night. You can also see the curtains that come standard. Pretty bland. If I had a sewing machine, it might be something I would change.




Have you noticed that furry stuff covering the walls? It is known as "rat fur" - I kid you not. I believe it is supposed to have some magical insulating properties, but to be honest, sometimes I feel like I'm living inside of some sort of furry animal. Here's a close-up of what it looks like. I can't even begin to imagine how you keep it clean.



And here is the door to the all important toilet and shower room. You'll notice more cupboards next to it. We store our clothes in these ones.



And finally, what you'll all been waiting for, pictures of the bathroom. We have your basic marine type of toilet sitting on a 9 gallon black water tank. (FYI - our grey water tank is 26 gallons and our fresh water tank is 12 gallons.) The shower is opposite of the toilet. While there isn't a huge amount of room in the bathroom, it is bigger than you might think. And when you're not using it as a bathroom, you can always use it for extra storage.





And that's the tour of Scamper, our tiny house on wheels. As someone said, "it's so tiny, you have to go outside to change your mind." Sure, she's small, but she's all ours and she takes good care of us.

Thanks for stopping by our blog - we love it when people come visit! We're also on Facebook - pop by and say hi!


40 comments:

  1. Thanks for the tour of Scamper. I fell in love with the Scamp when we were tenting it in Zion National Park years ago but never had the chance to see one up close and personal.

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    1. How funny - we also fell in love with Scamps at a National Park - Yosemite! It's neat that they're made out of fiberglass like so many sailboats.

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  2. Thank U too! I saw your post recently on one of the RV forums on FB and at the time, there were no pics, or at least not that i can recall. I will love to have a similar set up, but have been researching composting toilets for my own. Thanx again!

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    1. Thanks for stopping back by and checking out the pictures! Composting toilets sounds like a very interesting option. Have you seen the info on them on the Gone with the Wynns site?

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  3. Great to see the inside of your little home on wheels ..thanks for sharing!!

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  4. HOORAY! Love your little Scamp and thanks for sharing pics of the inside!! Safe travels!

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    1. I find it interesting to see what other people's RVs look like, so glad you found it useful too!

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  5. What a marvelous little camper! Thanks for showing us around.

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    1. I saw this great poster about people in sleeping bags being soft tacos for bears which is why I'm glad we got a Scamp - now we're crunchy tacos :-)

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  6. Love it, and the fact it can be pulled with a Pathfinder! This is something we may consider when tired of living on our sailboat...

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    1. That was one of the big selling points for us - that it can be pulled by our vehicle. It has been great for us as we travel around looking for our next sailboat!

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  7. I know the smart arse answer, but what is your reason for not going with a compostable toilet?

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    1. They weren't an option when we bought our Scamp, but I'm really intrigued by them. It's something I would want to look into at some point - whether for our Scamp or our new sailboat.

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  8. Welcome to the Scamp world! We love our 19! Check out the Scamp page (http://justfinding.blogspot.com/p/scamp-19.html) on our blog for one solution to the stinky slinky storage challenge.

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    1. Thanks for the link! Lots of great ideas for Scamp modifications - love it! So many things I want to do to ours now :-)

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  9. I'm so glad to see that even a couple can full time it in one this size. If I decide to go full time mobile in an RV (I live in a fifth wheel right now that is parked), I would probably try to go with something this small so I wouldn't have to buy a huge vehicle to tow it with. Do you have any pets? (I admit, I just found your blog and need to do some reading to see if you already covered that question.)

    And since this post was from a while ago, have you found a way to keep the rat fur clean? :-)

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    1. Hi Terri - thanks so much for popping by our page! I don't think something as small as a 13' Scamp would work for everybody, but it definitely worked for us. Getting the bigger bed mad a difference - more room to lounge around for both of us when it was made up as a bed. We don't have pets and to be honest, I'm not sure that there would be enough room for us and a pet in the Scamp. A cat would fit more easily, but the litter box would take up valuable floor space. Maybe a small dog would work? If you're on Facebook, check out the Scamp Travel Trailers FB group and ask folks there if they have pets. It's a great group of people - really helpful and always willing to answer questions etc.

      Once you get further along in our blog :-) you'll find that we've put our Scamp in storage while we're currently living on our sailboat. Still small compared to most people's sticks and bricks homes, but much larger than our Scamp!

      I spilled some tomato sauce on the rat fur, but wiped it straight off with a damp sponge and it wasn't a problem. I still find the rat fur really bizarre, but it does feel cozy when you're inside.

      Love to hear what you end up doing and if you downsize to a smaller travel trailer. One other thought - do you know the blog Interstellar Orchard? It's written by a woman who lives full-time in her Casita (Scamp's cousin). I think her Casita is larger, but her blog is great and lots of good ideas and tips about living in small spaces.

      Cheers - Ellen

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  10. HI Ellen, thanks so much for writing me back! I do read Becky's blog, and she is awesome, always replies to everyone and has such great advice. I wish I had had her common sense and smarts at her age (I'm now 42). I do have some pets - 4 cats and a small blind chihuahua so that's why I have the fifth wheel right now - all of the cats needed their own space and I do have 2 litter boxes, so I know what you mean about valuable floor space. I've actually removed the door off of my dinette seat and have turned it into a kitty hideout, and they all seem to love it. :-)

    And I think I've joined that group, but now I am going to become a lot more active. Thanks for reminding me about them!

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    1. Sounds like you've got quite the menagerie! Clever idea making a hiding spot for the cats in the dinette seat. Cats love little hidey-holes. Maybe we'll cross paths one day with you towing a Scamp :-)

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  11. Hi you guys!
    I'm about to order a 2016 13'. I got all the pricing deals from them earlier today. I asked to omit just the toilet so I can put in a composting toilet myself. Believe it or not- even though this is less work (plumbing and installation, cost of toilet itself), they are telling me it costs more because then I need to start at a base Scamp and manually add in everything. Anyway, my questions for you, if I may: How did you get a bathroom widow? I was told today that they haven't been making them or the rock-guard for them in a few years... that they replaces the window with a small ceiling vent. Do you have a fan vent in the bathroom? And is that toilet kind of high off the floor where you can put your feet? And if you didn't get a grey tank, what is the alternative? Does the sink/shower water just drain to the ground?
    I'm almost considering getting the 16' just for that little bit of extra space and the ability to get another 12 gallon fresh water tank (under the other bench seat, where you may have a water heater... Speaking of which, is there room under that bench next to the water heater for any storage at all? Oh! Did you get the electric brakes? If not, it stops pretty easy, huh, considering it's only 1200 lbs or so, yeah?

    Thank you so much in advance for taking the time to answer these!!

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    1. You'll love your new Scamp - such great little travel trailers!

      I had heard that Scamp had stopped putting the window in the bathroom. We must have been one of the last models that still included it. To be honest, I think I would prefer having a window then a vent, but I guess it isn't an option anymore.

      The toilet really is that high off the floor. It is kind of a pain to perch on and if you're shorter then you kind of have to hop onto it. I think some people have added a base over the shower or a step stool to make it easier to use.

      The sink/shower water drains into your gray water tank. I'm not sure how it would work if you didn't have a gray water tank. I believe in a number of areas it's against the rules to drain your gray water directly to ground, so it might be worth getting one when they build yours.

      We don't have any room under our benches for storage, so space is pretty limited in the Scamp. We ended up storing a lot of stuff in our tow vehicle. Kind of like our garage.

      We do have the electric brakes. I think (but not 100% sure on this), they're required in certain states, like CA. It seemed like a good safety feature, so we went ahead and got them.

      You might try negotiating with Scamp on the price. I see where they're coming from in that you're not ordering one of their packages which gives you a discount, but they might work with you on a discount anyway. I like the idea of a composting toilet. Will be interesting to hear how this works out for you.

      If you're on Facebook, there is a great Scamp group on there. Really helpful folks. Someone may have put in a composting toilet on their Scamp, know more about the electric brakes or have more insight into negotiating the price etc.

      Congrats - you're going to have a lot of fun Scamping!

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    2. Thank You, you guys. I'll keep you posted on how it goes. I may just get the damn toilet and uninstall it myself. I'd LOVE to get a FLAT fiberglass floor in there for more room while showering instead of that big box area where the toilet actually sits. I wonder what's under there, considering the Black tank is actually inside under the toilet itself. That 9 gallon black tank is actually attached to the toilet. Maybe there's some plumbing are piping that requires that box on the toilet side. I'll call them and ask. There is a waiting list until June 2016, but I will let you know how it goes. Thank you so much for your time and your answers.

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  12. after i graduate college i want to get a good trailer.. im 4 foot 7 do you think that would be a good fit? i want to get the 13 but i cant find any prices at all.. do you know where i could find the price for a trailer like this?

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    1. Hi Abby - the best thing to do is to contact Scamp directly and they can send you a current price list. I'm not sure if you're wondering about the height of the 13' Scamp in terms of fit? If so, my hubby is 6' tall and he can stand upright. However, the 13' is so tiny, that you don't spend that much time standing up unless your cooking or doing the dishes. Best of luck in your search for a Scamp and in finishing up college :-)

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  13. My husband and I are strongly considering purchasing a 13' Scamp with the same features as yours. How much did this cost you? I have been looking everywhere for the average cost, but can't seem to find one! Congrats on your new home. How exciting! Thank you for your post.

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    1. Glad you found the post helpful! Probably the best thing to do is contact Scamp directly and ask them for the current price list. They'll email it off to you with details about what the different options cost and I think things may have changed since we bought ours. Good luck - they're great little campers!

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    2. I don't know how accurate these prices are, but you can get an idea via this website: http://www.nadaguides.com/RVs/2016/Scamp

      Many of us do our research at a time when you can't call Scamp, so thought this might be useful.

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    3. Thanks for sharing - I'm sure that will be a big help to folks.

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  14. hi.i probably don't want to hear the answer to this question but here goes. how is the 9 gallon tank under the toilet EMPTIED ?
    thx.

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    1. Well, it is pretty gross :-) Basically, you attach a plastic slinky like tube to a connection under the camper, put the other end into a dump station, open it up and the waste goes into the dump station. Plastic gloves are a pretty popular item when emptying the black water tank as you can probably imagine.

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  15. I agree as Sue B said "Great to see the inside of your little home on wheels". It feels like you are never away from home.

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  16. Thanks for this up close and personal tour! I'm researching smaller travel trailers and think the Scamp is so cool with a nostalgic quality, like you can just imagine it going down Route 66. So glad you shared and happy travels!

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    1. I'm glad you found it useful! Good luck with your travel trailer research.

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  17. Considering a small camper, are you still loving Scamp? Any minuses so far?

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    1. Hi Mark - We can't think of any minuses with the Scamp. It really suits our needs well. Best of luck in your search for a tiny camper. They're a lot of fun :-)

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  18. So glad I found your blog! I just ordered a 13' with bathroom and will pick it up in April, 2018. I made a trip to the factory in Backus and was charmed by their small and efficent build process. Can you answer a question? What are the actual floor dimensions? I got the carpet, but will probably cover it with a runner or throw rug. Thanks!

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    1. Hi Meg - thanks for your comment. Unfortunately, we're not in our Scamp right now so I can't measure the floor for you. Maybe give the factory the call? I'm sure they could help out. All the best for your new Scamp - you'll love it :-)

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  19. I want a scamper/tiny camper so badly! Trying to find a used one so that we don't have so much for a new one.

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    1. They're so hard to find used. Which just goes to show how popular they are. Good luck with your search. Hopefully you find one soon.

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We'd LOVE to hear from you! If we're out on the water cruising, our internet access will be limited and it may take a while before we're able to respond to your comments and pay a return visit to your blog, but please know that we will once we can get connected.