Frequently Asked Questions

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Q: How much duct tape did you use?
A: We used 4 rolls for the sides, and 1.5 rolls on the top. And we used about an extra roll for things like edging on the door, molding on the windows, and miscellaneous repair jobs. All in all, 7 rolls does the trick.

Q: What if it rains?
A: Well, we get wet. If you look closely at the photos, you'll notice that there are two glaring vulnerabilities.

First, the windows are just rectangle holes, with a piece of screen duct taped on the inside. Randy made a cover for one window out of duct tape. For the other window, she made a curtain out of a napkin. Both were attached on the inside, so if it rains, it comes in the windows.

Second, we didn't put the duct tape all the way down to the bottom. We left about a foot of the wall open to allow for easy air flow. It did indeed get quite warm inside, so it worked out well to have that gap. But again, if it rained, it would have gotten wet.

It's important to note that we made it the way we did while paying close attention to the weather forecast for the inaugural weekend. And the weather turned out to be absolutely beautiful! Had there been rain in the forecast, we would have made sure the entire camper was water proof. We also brought a tarp, so all would have been fine.

Q: How long did it take to build it?
A: We worked on it for several hours on each of two days.

Q: How did it drive on the highway?
A: It drove fine. The campground is 27 miles from home. We took Nicolet Drive there instead of the highway, since it was the inaugural camping trip. The speed limit on Nicolet Dr is 35 almost all the way, with a couple of miles at 55. Based on how it performed, I'd have no problem driving 65 MPH.

Q: What kind of duct tape did you use?
A: Duck Brand. We bought it at Fleet Farm and WalMart. Our main requirement was that it had to be a decent tape, one that would last the weekend and hold up well in case of rain. It worked great, and they have a variety of colors that made some of the molding more interesting. No, I don't work for Duck Products or have any affiliation with Duck whatsoever. I'm only mentioning it here because people have asked the question.

Q: Wouldn't it have made more sense to just put the money and time and effort into a small tent, or just build a camper that would have lasted longer, or make something that's waterproof?
A: No.

Q: Wasn't the inside of the camper all sticky?
A: Yes initially. Randy and her friend Sam decorated the inside by putting up various colors of tissue paper (the kind you use for wrapping gifts). They cut out flowers and various shapes and the inside looked pretty cool.

Q: Where and when was the inaugural duct tape camping trip?
A: August 15-17, 2008
Bay Shore Park
5637 Sturgeon Bay Rd
New Franken, WI 54229
web site

Q: So what's up with the camper now?
A: We only used the camper for the one camping trip. We don't have any indoor storage for the winter, so we took it apart a couple months after we used it. We talk about building a version 2 for a future camping trip. Who knows?

Q: Didn't people make fun of you? Aren't you embarrassed?
A: Yes. No.

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De Pere, WI
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