The INSIDER Summary:
• Nathan Eigenfeld is building his own tiny mobile home.
• He’ll live in it during a ski trip to British Columbia.
• He has no substantial construction experience, so the project has been frustrating and rewarding.
Colorado native Nathan Eigenfeld, 27, is turning an 8×6 trailer into a cosy ski lodge on wheels, which he plans to live in this winter.
He’s building the tiny home with no real construction experience… though his Ph.D. in mechanical engineering certainly helps.
Nathan Eigenfeld graduated with a Ph.D. in mechanical engineering from University of Colorado Boulder last winter.
He's continued working there as a postdoctoral research associate.
This winter, he's planning to take a much-needed break to go skiing in British Columbia from January through March.
'I didn't take any breaks coming in from undergraduate directly into my Ph.D., and then directly from my Ph.D. into postdoc,' he said.
'I have been wanting to go to British Columbia for several years to ski,' Eigenfeld said. 'It's kind of the powder Mecca of North America.'
His friends are all cramming into an RV for the trip, but Eigenfeld decided to build his own mobile home to hitch to his Toyota Tundra.
'I was going to buy a camper, but figured I would just build one instead,' he said. 'Building these rigs is definitely trending.'
He began creating the tiny home with no initial design, eyeballing measurements and taking it day by day.
'I'd say I have no substantial construction experience, but with some common sense and YouTube you can do a lot,' he said.
'It's definitely a learning process, because just about every single step of the process is a first try, so that can add some serious anxiety and frustration.'
His original budget was $3,000, but he estimates the total cost of the project will be somewhere between $4,000 and $4,500.
'There are certain things that I ended up splurging on to make it nicer,' he said, citing double-pane windows, a hardwood door, and pine paneling.
'These are all very standard household items that are all on the cheap side, but since I'm trying to do it super dirt bag level, to me, these were splurge items. My original thoughts were to make a metal box I could sleep in, but it turned into something bigger, more of an investment.'
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