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Jada: Spartans and the new generation camper PART I

If you see harvesters on the road or parked in campgrounds, you will often see 10 wide, silver campers. They may not necessarily look pretty like new campers on the outside but harvesters love these campers which are quite “homey” in the inside. They are called Spartans.

Spartans were built in the 50's by a company that built airplanes
Spartan Campers, which were built by an airplane company, are in high demand among harvesters.

Why are they not necessarily aesthetically pleasing on the outside? They are old! Most of these trailers were built in the 50’s by a company that also built airplanes and as you can guess, the metal on these campers is the same as on an airplane. The reason why harvesters love them is because they are built to last, have tons of storage and room for full sized appliances and a full bath. Not only are they very functional, they also are very well insulated.

Not necessarily asthetically pleasing on the outside Spartan trailers are in high demand by harvesters
Here is a photo of our Spartan trailer where the crew lives and I do most of the cooking. We love it and think the blemishes just add character. : ) 


The kitchen
Our kitchen has a full size stove, two residential fridges and an ice maker (not pictured). The cabinets are the originals. [See guys, I told you I would find a way to show our mom’s how clean we keep it! ; ) ]

Those who own them wouldn’t trade them for anything and those who don’t have them would love to get their hands on one. However, several of these campers have seen their days. The main problem is the frame and floor giving out. Some have spent money to replace the frame and redo the flooring as well as the entire interior while others are moving on to what I call the “next generation” harvest trailer.

James, Callum and Oak hang out in the Spartan.
James, Callum and Oak hang out in the living area of our Spartan- a favorite place for us all!

If you check out campgrounds you will see they have more and more truck trailers parked in camping spots. These are what I refer to as the “next generation trailers”. They have the reputation of being roomy and well built like the Spartans and also better insulated then any camper on the market today. Harvesters also enjoy the extra space (they typically are longer than any camper on the market) and the ability to customize their own space because they are building their own. Some harvesters who have done this are Froese harvesting. Stay tuned for Part II of this post for a tour of Froese harvesting’s truck trailer.

Fun Fact: Other harvesters that own converted truck trailers are Goessen Harvesting, Paplow harvesting, and Wipf harvesting. Do you or someone you know have a custom built a camper? Luxury by design is a company that builds custom travel trailers and 5th wheels. These campers are also popular with harvesters.

What I am digging today….. this picture I have been meaning to post since Texas!
Me, my sister Tara and Ryan Campbell.
If you can’t tell it’s rather old… The picture is of me, my sister Tara and Ryan Campbell, son of Mike and Julie Campbell (our farmers in Olney, TX). After some debating, Mike and Julie determined that Ryan was 3 years old in this photo which means I was about ready to turn 6 and Tara was 9.

Jada can be reached at jada@allaboardharvest.com. All Aboard is sponsored by High Plains Journal and DuPont Crop Protection.

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