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The Beginning

September 1, 2017 - I needed a trailer to take to trailer rallies. It needed to be something I was drawn to and would not need a restoration until I was finished restoring my '57 Westerner.

My Rod and Reel was purchased from a seller in Burns, Oregon in October, 2016. After seeing an ad placed on Facebook, and some lengthy phone calls, sharing photos and emails with the seller, we made a deal. I drove over 1,800 miles round trip in 5 days to retrieve my Rod and Reel which I named Woody. The trailer needed new brake assemblies, new rims, tires, safety chains, a 7 way connector cord, the repair and welding of a missing outrigger end, and working running lights. I only had a very stressful 24 hours to make the trailer tow ready. Luckily, the seller had cleaned and regreased the bearings.

I bought this trailer to be used as trailer specifically to go to 2 or 3 vintage trailer rallies per year while I worked on restoring my other trailer, a '57 Westerner. Large windows, rounded cabinets, and very unique fender skirts lured me in.

The street side of the trailer was sagging. I would later find out it was due to worn springs.

As far as I know, the trailer sat for many years as seen below. One of the front windows was broken as was the door window. It was last registered decades ago.

I bought it from the seller who moved it from this location after this picture was taken. He found it and sold it to me.

Below is how I first saw it at the sellers home on the driveway. Pictures don't show that the color is almost a mint green. My first thoughts were, "Ewe!"

The wheels were his. I had to order new tires and rims and have them drop shipped to the seller's home in Oregon before I arrived. I lived in southern California. I had to swap the brake assemblies with new ones. Only one of the new brake assemblies was operational, so I was forced to use one of the original brake assemblies which hadn't been used in decades. I drove away hoping it would work. It did and continues to do so.

Work began to prep the trailer for the drive home. I had to get the running lights and brakes working. New tires were mounted at the local tire store. I had to seek a temporary travel permit from Oregon DMV for a small fee before the close of the workday.

Cardboard was taped over the broken front window. The road guard from a 60's trailer had been added at some point in it's history. This was a good thing. It protected the front window from wind force when driving and most likely allowed that large sheet of cardboard to stay in place during the journey home.

An outrigger near the curbside wheel well had been ripped out during a previous blow out and needed to be welded on. Fortunately, a welder was a few blocks away. New safety chains were welded to the tongue.

Below is the last stop before leaving Burns Oregon and heading to Klamath Falls, Oregon, my first stop. It was early evening and rain was due the next day. I dodged the rain.

Below is the my rig before heading out back home.

I drove for many hours and arrived at nearly midnight at the local KOA to park and slept for only 5 hours before I went on my way to the San Francisco Bay Area to stay with family.

The next day put me in rest stops along the way. Despite my small minivan with only 185 horses and a 3,500 lbs tow capacity. Woody towed rather well. I did have trouble driving up to 65 mph, but kept the driving to 55 mph most of the way, with overdrive off. Trailer brakes were working. I was following a pre-planned route that was the most level I could find. I still had been in the trees as I left Bend and headed south west and then south along Interstate 5.

On the way down in Buelton, California, I stopped for a rest and made a short video. As seen here.

Over 1,000 miles later, the trailer would finally be at home. I would later move it to my mother-in-law's driveway.

Here Woody sat for most of the next 8 months.

He would be tarped for much of that time, but he did make it to his first trailer rally in Hemet, California in spring 2017. Here is a video showing some quick decorating.

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