Periodically I’ll get requests from readers of The Small Trailer Enthusiast asking about the identity of a particular vintage trailer. I readily admit I’m not the best historian when it comes to vintage trailers, as my forte is more on current offerings. I typically direct those inquiries to various forums or Facebook pages that cater to vintage campers, such as Tin Can Tourists where the vast membership base will likely yield positive results for the person inquiring facts about their unit.
Recently I got a similar inquiry from a reader that I chose to do this post on due to the uniqueness of his trailer. The reader’s name is John and his trailer he owns is a fiberglass gooseneck called a Cabana. The best John knows is that it dates back to around 1976 and was built by the same Oregon company that built motorhomes during the some general time period.
While Cabana motorhomes aren’t easy to come by, a Cabana trailer is apparently impossible to come by. Says John, “I’ve been unable to find another Cabana. It could be the last of its kind. I had acquired it with hopes of restoring it or at least making it more usable but it is in Oregon and I don’t have the time and money to travel there to keep working on it.” John resides in Canada.
The Cabana is a fiberglass shell with a rear door entry, shower/toilet combo, refrigerator, furnace, and table. Since John owned it, he started cleaning it out. “I’ve removed all the moldy 1970s carpeting on the walls and ceiling and have patched a few holes that were in the ceiling to hold various items. I replaced the skylight since it was broken and brittle. I also repainted the roof just this month.”
John’s decided to sell it as is instead of continuing with the project. For anyone with some good restoration skills, this could be a pretty fun project to take on, considering the rare quality of the Cabana. John’s looking at about a $2,000 price tag for anyone interested. He can be contacted via e-mail at email@example.com
John has done some extensive research on the Cabana company and its parent company Forest Grove Industries from Forest Grove, Oregon. After my own sleuthing, it’s apparent to me that John has likely turned over every rock on the Cabana planet there is. This has moved my opinion to one where the Cabana trailer very well could’ve been a prototype that never made it to the production stage. I’ve never seen one during my online travels and if there were multiples built, one would think there’d be pictures out there somewhere, but that’s not the case. Which is why I came up with “The Lonely Cabana” for the name of this post, since this might just be the only one you’ll ever see.
And as a side note, this Cabana is not to be confused with the Cabana that Keystone RV made from the late 1990’s to the early 2000’s. If any of you who read this have a Cabana or have seen this before, feel free to send me some pics at firstname.lastname@example.org or leave a comment below.