Is My Vintage Trailer an Orphan

Question: Luise: Great website! I just bought a 1977 fiberglass trailer manufactured by Compact Equipment Company of California that I think may be what they call an “orphan”. I can’t find any information on this company. I have looked on several vintage travel trailer sites and have found no information on the company or this particular trailer. It is oddly shaped and has a very “70s” exterior color scheme. Any information that you may have would be quite helpful. Thank you! Heather in Flagstaff

Answer: Dear Heather in Flagstaff: Thank you for your kind remarks about my website.

Until I got my vintage Argosy travel trailer and found out it was manufactured by Airstream I had no idea there were so many companies that haven’t made it in the travel trailer industry. It was pure luck that I have a manufacturer still in business that actually has parts. When my door lock died of old age, I was amazed that I was able to replace it.

I think the best way for you to find out more about your new acquisition is to find other owners of units made by Comfort Equipment, if you can, to share information back and forth with.

It’s going to be a kind of hit and miss thing because everything I have found indicates that your trailer is an orphan and no longer in production. How great that they made a Fiberglas model back then! Also, you need to be prepared for some snobbery. There are those who feel a “Vintage Travel Trailer” must have been manufactured before 1970 to rate the title. I kid you not.

I love my ’72, 27 foot Argosy with a passion. The real wood paneling beats the fake stuff all to heck and gone. I don’t have an ice maker, automatic levelers, basement compartments, etc. but it’s worth it to me to have charm. I’ve put down braided rugs and have crewel embroidered curtain/drapes. I even found a great cuckoo clock that fits my only real wall space. I’ve finished it off with an electric, freestanding fireplace and glider rockers with footstools. Cozy!

Welcome to world of the “oldies but goodies”.

Blessings, Luise

21 Responses to Is My Vintage Trailer an Orphan

  1. Charlie Joyner March 9, 2008 at 2:45 pm #

    I have a 1977 24ft argosy rear bath and would like to restore it. Where can I find bathroom sinks, stovetops, light figure ext. Also would like to install an awning.

    Thanks,

    Charlie

  2. georgia October 31, 2008 at 9:29 am #

    I just read the question from the lady that has the Orphan built by Compact. I talked to a man today that has a fiberglass for sale and he said it was a Compact. Also said it has a “popup” on the top. Could I have the ladies email address so I can chat with her? I am thinking of buying this one. Thanks, georgia

  3. Luise October 31, 2008 at 10:11 am #

    Dear Georgia: I don’t give out email addresses unless it is requested but I sent yours to Heather. I hope she responds to your inquiry. Blessings, Luise

  4. B. March 21, 2009 at 4:32 am #

    I AM SO GLAD I FOUND THIS SITE. I PURCHASED AN ARGOSY ABOUT TO YEARS AGO AND I LOVE IT.I AM ABOUT TO GO STRAIGHT THROUGH IT AND WOULD APPRECIATE ANY INFO YOU CAN GIVE ME ON WHERE TO GET PARTS. THANK YOU. B.

  5. Luise March 24, 2009 at 2:18 pm #

    Answer: Dear B. Try: http://www.airstreamofspokane.com
    Blessings, Luise

  6. J. June 22, 2009 at 10:27 am #

    Luise, I have owned a COMPACT, 1974 version trailer since 1985.
    All fiberglass, no insulation, 20 gal water tank, sink with electric pump,3 burner propane stove, ice box, small closet. Top pops up over central aisle,
    rear door entrance. Weighs about 1,200 lbs. Tongue weight 69 lbs. Easy pull with Toyota pickup. Built in California, learned somewhere that is was used
    by military for officers quarters for field housing. Now planning to sell and go for a Bubbletop van. All the best, J.

    • Luise June 22, 2009 at 12:06 pm #

      Hi J. I know what those look like. Nice units! Hope someone will buy it that will appreciate it. Blessings, Luise

  7. N. July 21, 2009 at 7:56 am #

    We have found a 1977 Triple E Surfsider 14′ fiberglass trailer for sale. I can’t find any information on the web about it. Do you know anything about these trailers or who manufactured them. Thank you. N.

    • Luise July 22, 2009 at 10:14 am #

      I’m nt familiar with the Surfsider but lets hope someone here has some information for you. Luise

  8. D. September 20, 2009 at 3:05 pm #

    I have just purchased a really cute 64 Terry trailer and am looking for a copy of the original logo, that was on the middle of the front, above the windows. I have a faded out version, but can’t quite make out the design behind the word “Terry.” If anyone has any information for me, I would appreciate it. D.

    • Luise September 21, 2009 at 8:17 am #

      Dear D.: I would suggest that you search the web for Terry trailers for sale, as well as ebay and craigslist. There are many sites that sell used trailers and offer pictures. One of those pictures may give you what you want. Blessings, Luise

  9. B. October 11, 2009 at 8:30 am #

    I have a 1987 Travel Villa, bought used from a friend but it didn’t come with a book, so we are at a loss to know how you drain the fresh water tank to get it ready to winterize. When underneath the entire bottom of the trailer is covered and you can see nothing of the workings. B.

    • Luise October 11, 2009 at 8:48 am #

      Dear B. Draining the water lines doesn’t work because some water always remains, freezes and often breaks the line. That’s an awful headache because of the mess and the cost of repairs. Good for you for thinking about this in advance! RV systems aren’t gravity designed, so what you will need is a compressor to blow the lines free of water. Any mobile RV repair and maintenance person can do it for you and put some antifreeze in the lines to cover condensation and any residual moisture. Or you can go to an RV supply store to get the necessary equipment and instructions. This is true no matter what the year or make, so you don’t need the original instruction book this time. Perhaps the new ones have a line-blowing system built in, I don’t know because I’m a vintage buff. Blessings, Luise

  10. R. April 21, 2010 at 4:53 pm #

    i am restoring a 17ft little gem trailer serial# 5572 i need to know what yr it is & i need to know who sells the old style paneling {honey gold with no lines in it }. help! R.

  11. Dr. Linda June 27, 2010 at 3:39 pm #

    Hello all and I hope you are having or trying to have a cool afternoon, this Sunday. I am a Veterinarian who has been called up by a Foundation who is trying hard to save turtles, doves and other endangered animals in the Gulf Region. I have owned in the past a vintage trailer and need one badly now. I live South of Atlanta, Georgia. If anyone knows of anyone that has one I can buy for 5K or under, GOD BLESS YOU. This web site has inspired me that you guys will help.
    God Bless America and the Gulf Region
    Which should have never happened………….

  12. jasmine June 27, 2010 at 5:50 pm #

    We have purchased a vintage trailer 1965 Rancho del ray and we cant find any info about it anywhere. If anyone knows anything about this kind of trailer please let us know..thanks

  13. olivia October 9, 2010 at 11:20 am #

    we have “canned ham ” SO looking foward to making her lake/camping ready. 1976 shasta. but we need so many goodies for her. like new entrance door, refrig. rock guard and WINGS. we are rewiring and painting our selves. not sure about the cushions as of yet. I JUST LOVE THIS LITTLE CAMPER. CAN PLEASE SEND ME IN THE RIGHT DIRECTION OF MANUAL AND REPLACEMENT PARTS.
    LUCY-RICKIE@COX.NET THANKS RICK AND OLIVIA

    • Luise October 20, 2010 at 8:47 pm #

      Let’s publish this and hope that you get a reply.

  14. Brad October 18, 2010 at 7:50 pm #

    I myself have a 26′ ’72 argosy. They were made in Versailles, Ohio. My trailer is the 16th off the assembly line. My wife’s grandfather and uncle worked at the factory for the seven years they made the “painted airstream”. He probably helped build yours as well. I have done a lot of research on them. If you need anything contact me.

    • Kristin July 7, 2012 at 6:07 pm #

      Hi Brad, we are about to purchase a 1971 Argosy and are very excited. Would love any information/links you can forward for locating parts etc. Thanks, Kristin

  15. meghan July 26, 2011 at 11:49 am #

    Just found this while I was searching on info on finding a VIN for my 1970s Play Pac Fiberglass camper. There is a very good site I joined…fiberglassrv.com
    good luck!

Leave a Reply