Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Featured Teardrop: Juno Custom Teardrops

The Juno Custom Teardrops website has been up on the Web for just a few weeks, but the photos of their exquisitely built teardrop trailers caught my eye right away. The Lubbock, Texas company creates dream trailers tailored to each customer's preference and offers a base model and custom options like stain and color, appliances, storage compartments, entertainment packages and lighting. With all the options, these tiny trailers actually look like luxurious tiny homes on wheels or rolling works of art.

The Rick teardrop trailer galley

The owner of Juno Custom Teardrops, Roger Juno, has been a woodworker all his life, but actually does not have a background in industrial or commercial design or construction. His nephew does the welding for each trailer base, and Roger went through a lot of trial and error before he made the trailers available to the public. Roger was kind enough to answer a few of my questions about his teardrops, which all happen to be named after the customers who have designed and ordered them.

The Richard teardrop trailer

Your designs are beautiful and the cabinetry work is exquisite. What do you feel makes your designs unique or special?

The effort and attention to detail that we scrutinize over is what gives our teardrops that special quality. We build our Juno Teardrops as if they were our own personal trailers, so anything that won't bring the "Ohh's and Ahh's" from the sea of on-lookers is not something we want to produce. Also, the standards we hold ourselves to are pretty high. We know exactly what we are capable of and strive for that mark.

In driving toward that ever-growing mark, it always seems as if we're in competition with ourselves, always trying to out-do the previous teardrop by making the current trailer better than the last. As far as the unique aspect of our trailers goes, it all stems from the buyer's imaginations and requests. The custom teardrops designs that have been previously built are from the desires of our customers, making their custom Juno Teardrop as unique as they are. It is our job to make their wishes into a reality.

The Plain Jane teardrop trailer
  
How did you get into the teardrop building business?

On a dare, believe it or not. In 2009 my brother and I were driving down the road here in Lubbock, Texas past Gander Mountain. As we were passing by, we both spotted a little camping trailer sitting in Gander's parking lot. So, the next thing we knew, that strange little camper was being investigated with a fine toothed comb.

After debating between each other for a good while, my brother and I went inside and asked a salesman about the origin of the trailer sitting in the parking lot. That's when I found out what a teardrop trailer was for the first time. I've always been gifted in creating new things, so when my brother asked me, "Do you think you could make a better teardrop than the one in the parking lot?", I said yes. That little bet turned into a two-year project, and the two-year project produced my first teardrop trailer: the Juno 001. The rest is history.

The Richard galley

What do you like most and least about teardrop trailers and teardrop camping?

I actually have two favorite things when it comes to traveling with my Juno Teardrop:

First, I enjoy the community of teardrop trailer and camper owners that I have met through this business, as well as the new acquaintances that I get the pleasure of meeting for the first time. That is probably the best part of the teardrop business for me, being included into a society of teardroppers that have the same exact passions for these trailers as you do is great.

Second, I love filling up at gas stations during my travels. Why? Because I swear that our teardrops are always swarmed by curious on-lookers when we're at the gas station. They just can't believe how pretty it is, and they keep asking questions about every little thing. Well it's lucky for them, because I LOVE talking about it.

The least enjoyable thing about making teardrops would be the time I slammed my thumb in the galley hatch of the trailer. As for the last part of the question: teardrop camping has no negatives!

 
The Rick teardrop trailer galley


Who are the teardrops named after?

The teardrop model names actually came from our previous customers that created them. Every teardrop we have built thus far has been completely custom, and no two are the same, just like our buyers. So, naming the teardrop models after our customers seemed only appropriate. The design is theirs. Our goal is to contribute to the customer's design, and not the other way around.


The Rick teardrop trailer fridge


Where do you like to camp?

Currently, I would like to see northeast Indiana again. We recently delivered a trailer to a customer in Indiana, and we discovered that the northeast is a beautiful part of the country. Growing up in West Texas, we do not have the landscape the upper U.S. has access to, so it feels like a breath of fresh air to travel the country with our teardrops.


The Kathy teardrop trailer interior


Where are your dream places to visit in a teardrop trailer?

I have always wanted to do two things in a teardrop trailer:

First, being from Lubbock, Texas, naturally I'm a Texas Tech Red Raider fan, so I have always wanted to go to every single away game they have in my teardrop. It can't get any better than teardrops and football!

Second, I've always wanted to ship me and my own personal Juno Custom Teardrop to Hawaii and travel in my teardrop there. Now that would defiantly be a dream place to visit!

The Steve teardrop trailer

Photos by Juno Custom Teardrops

4 comments:

  1. Christina-

    I just wanted to say hello to you and your husband. Your video that was featured on Kirsten Dirksen's *faircompanies YouTube Channel is to "blame" for my obsession with teardrops! I'm sure that's not the first time you've heard that from someone. So fast-forward to toady...my wife Vanessa and I sold 4 acres in the Texas Hill Country to fund a CampInn 560 (on order, due in November), we're getting a loaner for a 3-week teardrop vacation this summer, and we're starting a teardrop podcast (hopefully launching in September) called TeardropTalkRadio! Yep...we've officially become fanatics! We currently have a show called Simple Life Together in iTunes and now that that's going strong, TeardropTalkRadio is up next!

    It doesn't seem like there are too many teardroppers here in Texas, so this post about Juno Custom Teardrops is a site for sore eyes. Thanks so much! I'm so glad you took the time to shoot that video...it has really started us on this amazing new path.

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    1. Daniel, your comment pleases me to no end! Thank you and welcome to the wonderful world of teardropping. Congratulations on your new CampInn. I've be in several of them and they are super plush and beautifully made.

      I am kind of shocked on the reaction to the video. It was just a fluke thing that Kirsten asked me to do. The response has been phenomenal.

      Actually, I would love to hear how your loaner trip goes. It would make a great post on the Tiny Yellow Teardrop blog. :-)

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    2. I'll certainly let you know how it goes! We're like kids waiting for Christmas. Once we get the podcast going, we'd love to have you on...seeing as how you're the one who got us hooked!

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