Wednesday, September 5, 2012

What a mad summer!

I'll be honest; my little Mobile Scout went nowhere this summer. But, we have a date with Rolling Oldies Vintage Trailers in Oregon at South Beach later this month.  This weekend we're spiffing her up and looking forward to a good weekend of relaxing.

It seems like I had one or two contacts a week from new people who had bought a vintage camper and wondered if it was a Mobile Scout, or was sure it was and sought more information. Each contact made me so glad I started this blog, and I have big plans and high hopes for continued stores of data as time goes on.

To summarize most of the contacts:

  • How do I tell if I have a Mobile Scout? Good question! Certain styling details, which vary from year to year, will set the Mobile Scout apart from the many campers which are very similar that were being produced at the time. I'm working on compiling a list of these, but right now most noticeable is: 
    • Trademark triangle window in the door
    • Placing/styling of windows
    • Paperwork glued inside the cabinet doors that show the certificate or wiring diagram and denote Mobile Scout
    • Sticker/logos on the unit
  • Where do I find more information out about my Mobile Scout. 
    • Um... *wave*. Right now this is the best we've got, really. 
  • Where can I get copies of manuals and paperwork for my camper? 
    • Good luck with that one.
      But seriously, if you HAVE paperwork, please contact me. I would like to arrange with those that have paperwork to scan/digitize the documents so I can make a catalog of them. This is a non-profit endeavor, just to preserve the info! I'd be happy to pay postage to/from  so I can get these done to archive quality. I'll make them available on the site to all who want to view them! 
  • Lookit my kewl new Mobile Scout!
    • Thank you for pictures, I love them! And I love to share them. Be sure to check out the Flickr group I made, "Mobile Scouts of the World." Feel free to add yours, or send me photos and I'll add them if you don't have a Flickr account. (I'll be adding a bunch of photos tonight.) 
Thanks to all who are enjoying the vintage camper craze. Let's keep 'em rolling! 

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Another reason to love your little camper...

Is knowing that even if things get really bad... you'll always have a roof over your head. Seriously. Sometimes I look at my little darling and think... how simple that would be. And maybe not so bad!

Friday, June 15, 2012

Vintage Mobile Scout stickers coming soon!

Some time ago I recreated the Mobile Scout logo as seen in the advertising materials I'd found, including a bumper sticker. I've shared that graphic file with people freely, but am almost always asked, "Don't you just have a sticker I could buy?"

Well the answer to that very soon will be, "Yes." I am having vinyl stickers printed and cut as we speak! They will be available very soon, and I'll post how to get your very own on the blog when they are in my hot little hands.

The sticker is designed to give props to this blog, THE place for Mobile Scout information. But, if you don't want that, it's also designed so you can quickly snip off the tag that has the blog URL. But please don't. But I won't stop you. ;-)

The stickers are 4" wide.

Vintage Mobile Scout Travel Trailers

I hope you're as excited as I am.

Also coming soon will be another logo version, as submitted by a reader!

Another vintage Mobile Scout logo.

Another vintage Mobile Scout owner and I have been discussing logos. I'm going to recreate this one, which is a version of the other one I found and recreated. Note the patriotic colors -- red, white, blue. It looks almost like an interstate sign... just imagine, the interstate system was not even completed when many of our late 50's and early 60's vintage Mobile Scouts were produced! It was a new and wild invention, reliable roads that stretched across states! Bet you take it for granted, don't you?

I would appreciate any photos you have of Mobile Scout vintage ephemera -- the logos and stickers on the camper, the wiring diagram found inside the upper cabinet doors on some models, the paperwork that came with the camper... if you have ANY of this, send me a high quality digital pic. Or, if you have it and don't want it, send it to me in postal mail, just PM me and I'll give you my address, and I'll pay your postage for sure!

Thursday, May 24, 2012

The history of Mobile Scout revealed!

Wow! My queries for information were answered! A big thanks to Elvie J. Frey, Sr. who is President of Winnebago Industries for putting all the pieces together for me!
Mobile Scout was indeed a company that built travel trailers years ago. I will give you an update as I know the history. In the late 70s William Dozer Thornton who owned the company sold it to an investor group. It was bankrupted by the new owners in the early 80s. W. D. Thornton received the right to the name in the bankruptcy in exchange for the money that they still owed him.

In 1992 several of us that were involved in the RV industry started a new venture, SunnyBrook RV, Inc, with Tom Thornton being one of the partners. W.D. Thornton was Tom’s father and Tom owned several RV dealerships in Texas at the time. When we started producing units Tom wanted his units built with the Mobile Scout name on them instead of SunnyBrook. Then several other Texas dealers also expressed interest in having their units built with the Mobile Scout Name. So we acquired the right to use the name and have been building units with the Mobile Scout name on them ever since.

In December of 2010 SunnyBrook was acquired by Winnebago Industries.


Elvie J. Frey, Sr.
President, Winnebago Industries

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Tracing the Mobile Scout History

From documents I've found, we know that Mobile Scout Manufacturing Corp. was building Mobile Scout campers in various lengths and configurations from the late 50's through the 60's. Camper building back in that day was a bit different from manufacturing today; given the variety of interiors and structural details, they appear to have been built with whatever resources were on hand -- the framing in ours, which we exposed when we took the skin of and the interior out in order to replace some rot -- was clearly whatever wood they had around, some clearly recycled. I've never been able to pinpoint how many of these vintage models were produced.

A postcard does suggest that they were booming; an ad-postcard for Mobile Scout Manfacturing Corp notes their Arlington, Texas address and the opening of a new plant in Pennsylvania (circa mid 60's?).

The old logo is confirmed in a bumper sticker that is for Mobile Scout Manufacturing Corp in Arlington, Texas. Ads in vintage camping magazines show a variety of lengths and configurations.

The trail goes somewhat cold, until SunnyBrook RV starts making travel trailers in 1992 under the SunnyBrook and Mobile RV names. A Google Image Search also finds some 90's campers that have the vintage Mobile Scout logo with "by SunnyBrook" beneath it.

I've not been able to ID what happened or when. Letters to SunnyBrook seeking someone in the business office who might be a vintage camper buff have so far been unfruitful. Finding someone in Arlington, TX who is from the era gets increasingly less likely by the day.

If you have any history information, please get in touch with me. I'd love to find out more.

Sunday, May 20, 2012

Today we were stalkers. Camper stalkers.

While out and about today, my husband and I spotted a canned ham style camper a few cars in front of us. We both yelped with delight as it turned the corner and we saw the traditional Mobile Scout graphics and details on the side. Crossing our fingers that the driver would head to a gas station for a break, we followed him. And... we followed him for quite a while. We were stalking, for sure. Off the main road. Into neighborhoods. Turn left, left, left... then back onto the main road we were originally on.

Was he trying to shake us?

Then off the main road again, just one block further than before. This time he wove back around to a Wal-Mart. We pulled up beside him and chatted for a bit. He showed us his camper, and we learned about Rollin' Oldies Vintage Campers, a group in the area that had just had a camping weekend with 40 campers in attendance.

We're going to get in touch and try to get connected with some others!