PhieldBug is a kit-form ultra-light micro teardrop trailer. Also available ready-built.
PhieldBug offers something very special. And that something is lightness. PhieldBug weighs just one third the mass of a typical micro teardrop. The empty weight of the entire vehicle is just 150kg, with the noseweight being as little as 14kg.
So virtually any car – including classic cars, low-powered air-cooled campers, and even lightweight kitcars – can pull PhieldBug with very little impact on performance and handling. PhieldBug tows in the slipstream behind a camper-van with minimal increase in drag. And as a bonus you won’t even need extension mirrors.
We created PhieldBug because we were so baffled by all the heavyweight micro-teardrops out there. We figured that, if we had wanted the pain of towing and pitching a half-tonne trailer, then surely we’d just buy a regular half-tonne caravan, wouldn’t we?
PhieldBug’s minimum-bother recipe is perfect for a quick camping getaway. It takes moments to hitch, is effortless to tow, and is a cinch to pitch. On arrival just wheel PhieldBug into position, adjust the nose-leg to level the floor, and you’re done. Out with the deck-chairs and get a brew on.
PhieldBug provides a well-ventilated, dry, cosy camping space which is instantly available… so no more arriving at a weekend event and having to put up a damp and draughty tent.
PhieldBug can also be used as a second room for the children to escape into when on a longer trip in a camper-van. And the kids just love having a room of their own. PhieldBug takes up no more space than an awning – which we find is how most campsites will price it when towed by a camper.
We’ve dispensed with the heavy side panels, the heavy roof, the heavy metal trim, and the heavy fittings that bedevil other teardrop designs. In the place of all this weighty stuff we have instead fitted… air. PhieldBug’s roof and walls and doors are 25mm thick. But most of that 25mm is just a weightless air-gap. This double-skinned timber-and-plastic construction creates an immensely rigid structure, and the air trapped between the skins provides insulation.
The exceptionally light weight of our pod design means we can also dispense with other heavy and complex components: the jockey-wheel is gone to be replaced by an adjustable ground-anchor; brakes aren’t required; and the chassis is a simple lightweight T-form.
Typical build-time is just 19 days. This assumes the builder is working evenings-only. This build time includes the application of all coatings and varnishes. And for ease of construction, most parts are varnished before they are installed.
Driving Licence After 1997? No Problem
PhieldBug can be legally towed on any standard UK driving licence. (Yes, even if you qualified after 1997: a trailer endorsement is only required for unusually heavy car/trailer combinations – see here for details.)
PhieldBug is legal for towing behind a trike in the UK (subject to the trike manufacturer’s towing limits).
PhieldBug is too long, and slightly too heavy, to be legally towed by a bike (or a combination) in the UK. However, we’ve spoken to plenty of bikers who are interested in an even lighter version of PhieldBug. So we’ve got a miniature version on the drawing board. We’re aiming at something with a 50kg empty weight, lowered suspension, a reduced roof-height, a narrower body and narrower track. And, of course, it will meet the rules for motorcycle trailers. Do get in touch and tell us what you need in a biking teardrop, and we’ll try to work it into our design.
*With thanks, of course, to Colin Chapman 🙂