Friday, March 11, 2011

1961 Forester Ideas and Photos

Finally got around to taking multiple pictures of my new project ... a 1961 Forester camper called "The Burrow."  We've decided to completely redo the interior since there's evidence of some neglect for lack of a more appropriate term.  The seller wasn't 100% truthful but when you fall in love, you tend to overlook the flaws for the beauty you see inside which is what happened here.  In all honesty, we probably should have walked away from this little gal and I think we knew that when we inspected her but being that we know how hard it is to find a little compact canned ham around here and the fact that the aluminum skin seems solid from all our poking and prodding we decided to take on the challenge of an internal restoration.

We learned from our mistakes with the 1968 Shasta Compact last year and knew to look for evidence of skin damage, collapsing walls, etc. and we didn't find that.  She towed home just fine and so that's a good sign.

Our plans are to reconfigure the inside by making a twin-size bed against the back wall.  The camper itself inside is 75 inches across so we can fit a mattress on the bed with no problem.  We'll extend out 40 inches for the actual bed section and then butted up against that on both sides will be two 18" x 18" benches.  Seeing as how the measurement from the back of the camper to the wardrobe closet (street side) is 58 inches, we're doing good with that plan.  On the curb side directly across from the wardrobe there used to be a waist high cabinet that was removed for some reason so we will replace that as well.

The porta-potty closet will likely remain the same size but I might use part of it for storage with shelves in the back.  The kitchen area cabinets will be redone and along the back and side walls, I plan on putting shelves with a decorative lip to keep stuff from sliding off when she's parked.

The outside will get a good polishing with Mother's Mag Polish and she will be shiny and bright when I get through with her.

The current flooring is unknown underneath some ratty carpet but I'm thinking of laminate flooring unless I decide to go with a vinyl.  Whatever I use will have to be somewhat heat resistant since there is a floor heater built into the actual floor of the camper.  I'm not sure why the decided to do that, it seems to me that inadvertently stepping on a hot grate at night would cause massive screaming and jumping around but I can't find any information on this old camper which leads me to believe either it's a rare jewel or the idea just didn't take off for Forest City Ind. Inc. of Forest City, Iowa.  If anyone has any information, I'd love to hear about it!


  1. Knitasha1968 from Ravelry here. I'm so enjoying reading about your camper restoration. It really looks like fun!

  2. I have a 1959 Forester. Interested in following your progress. Mine is turning into a larger project than I anticipated.

  3. Dennis, would love to see pictures of your Forester ... they're not very common. :)

  4. Oooo... love that kitchen! all the things I never had.

    thanks for coming over to my blog. I've add you to my sidebar... and will be back to read and catch up on your remodel adventures!

    Nice to meet you- Pat

  5. Good luck on your project.... we have remodeled 2- stop by and see us anytime... enjoy!!