Teardrop: Fabricating the Walls

— on December 12, 2016 by in Teardrop Camper

Progress has been slow. I finished the trailer floor and got the torsion axle welded on. My next task was to build the walls. This offered some problems I wasn’t sure how to solve. Combined with a busy work life I stalled out for most of 2016.

Teardrop Walls

I didn’t photograph the process (I’m either a photographer or a maker, but not both at the same time – at least not yet). The outer walls of the teardrop are almost 12 feet long and they are taller than 4′. Their shape was created on a single sheet of 6′ wide photo backdrop paper. 

Cutting the Walls

I don’t own a band saw, nor a CNC router (especially not one that can cut full sheets of plywood). The process of cutting these walls out started with some hardboard templates traced from the full size drawing then cut out with a jigsaw.

Teardrop Wall Template Assembled

I am new to using templates with a router and I made some mistakes and broke some bits. In the end I managed to get the 3 sections of each wall (6 total) cut out. I then had to cut the inner reliefs (the “windows”) for the insulation and to lighten the walls. I did that with a simple template and a router.

Joining the Edges

The plywood was edge joined using biscuits and original Gorilla glue. Once dry, they are sturdy and can be handled as if they were a single sheet of material. Even with the reliefs, they are heavy.

If I had to assemble this again, I would probably cut a 3/8 dado in each sheet on the same side, and then glue in a wide splicing strip (say 2″) filling it in. That would created a wide overlap between the various flat elements making a stronger joint.


If you look closely, you can see the outline of the door on the plywood. I didn’t cut it out before assembling these. I’m still resolving how I’m going to handle the doors. Until I have a better idea I don’t plan on cutting them out.