By Tony Barthel
When I was a kid one of the few redeeming things about going to the dentist, other than the obvious ability to have my teeth not fall out of my head, was that the building was next to a place that rented teardrop trailers. Even as a kid I loved RVs and trailers, and I always lusted after those little trailers. But we never got to rent one.
Since then, I grew up (sort of, not if you ask my wife) and now I get to look at RVs all the time. So looking at the nuCamp T@B CS-S teardrop camper brought me back to those days with all those little green teardrop trailers in the parking lot waiting to go camping.
This weekend I got to give an RV basic training camp to a bunch of ladies including one who had a nuCamp T@B CS-S clamshell camper. This is sort of the ultimate teardrop camper. Hers was decked out quite nicely with an awning that matched the colorful accents on the interior. Teardrop camping has come a very long way.
nuCamp T@B CS-S
All of nuCamp’s T@B series campers have the appearance of a teardrop trailer but are larger. That size difference compared to a normal teardrop means not only more space inside but more usable features.
The T@B CS-S bridges the gap between the company’s very traditional T@G teardrop and the T@B 400, which we’ve looked at before. There are also two versions of this trailer: the standard version, and then one with a boondocking package. That’s the one that intrigues me.
Like a traditional teardrop trailer, the T@B CS-S features an outdoor kitchen at the back and sleeping quarters in the front. But there is so much more in this trailer than in a traditional teardrop.
First of all, the front of the nuCamp T@B CS-S is a counter with some cabinets below that. I like that the company has hidden the plugs and outlets in a cabinet below with a hole in the top – much like some desks. This way you can marshal your wires and keep the interior of the trailer neater looking.
Over on the road side is what you might think is a closet. But it is actually a proper wet bath complete with shower and toilet. There’s even an elongated sink along the front wall of the trailer. Having a bathroom is what sold my class participant on this trailer. It certainly elevates the teardrop experience to a whole new level.
For 2021, nuCamp has switched this trailer to a cassette toilet which has a five-gallon capacity. This is a really convenient solution and many people like them, but not all.
In the back is a large dinette with a removable table
The back of the main section of the trailer is essentially a very large U-shaped dinette. nuCamp has provided a Lagun table – which is an infinitely movable table arrangement that I’m a huge fan of. There is also a provision to take this and use it outside with a second mount on the exterior of the trailer.
Transforming the dinette to a bed is a simple affair with a slide-out support that’s slatted. The final size of the bed is 70” X 58” – so this won’t be for everybody. I can imagine this camper being better suited to travelers who haven’t recently tried out for the basketball team.
The interior and hot water in this trailer are provided by an Alde heating system which circulates glycol through the interior to keep things toasty and also provide hot water. It’s a clever solution that provides a really comfortable heat. However, there isn’t a fan, so it may take a bit longer to heat a cold trailer than in a system with a fan. But this is also almost completely silent and doesn’t create moisture inside, either.
Step outside the nuCamp T@B CS-S
While there is a counter and a sink inside, the business of meal preparation is really the domain of the great outdoors in a trailer like this. There is a kitchen at the back under a hatchback.
Essentially the kitchen is a countertop with a raised section. In that raised section is a 12-volt/120-volt refrigerator. This makes so much sense as these don’t need venting to operate properly and they can safely run while the trailer’s being towed.
There’s a two-burner propane stovetop and a sink, the latter of which has been enlarged in 2021 models. If you don’t order the optional microwave, then there is additional storage space below the counter top. The overhead storage has a feature I really like. It’s a pass-through storage space so you can get to things from inside or out.
Overhead on the hatchback, which doubles as a roof over the food preparer’s head, is a light.
It’s worth noting that the windows used by nuCamp are the dual-pane European-style Lexan variety which flip up. They incorporate day and night shades in their build.
The company also uses a Nautilus water management system which organizes all the incoming water and connections, with the exception of power, in one place. This is something you’ll find on many fifth wheels and it’s a nice arrangement, placed in a cabinet in the case of this trailer.
While all the T@B trailers offer fancy color options and three different decal packages along with two different exterior wall colors, there’s also an upgrade to a Boondocking edition that I would think would be worth considering.
The larger 15” wheels with more aggressive off-road tires are part of that. But what I really like is the aluminum walk-on platform at the front of the trailer. This incorporates a walkable platform and also a “basket”-type arrangement so you can put additional cargo up there.
Up on the roof is a flexible 105-watt solar panel. The roof of all of these trailers is aluminum. The sidewalls are a sandwich of fiberglass with an Azdel waterproof substrate, and then block foam insulation or a rib of the welded aluminum substructure.
The CS-S is kind of a transition trailer between a true teardrop and a larger trailer such as one of nuCamp’s other offerings. There are a number of nifty options for color customization, awnings and more. The trailers are light enough to be towable by a wide variety of vehicles.
There’s a lot to like about these and the one I saw over the weekend was being towed by a smaller SUV, which was more than capable of handling the trailer.
These RV reviews are written based on information provided by the manufacturers along with our writer’s own research. We receive no money or other financial benefits from these reviews. They are intended only as a brief overview of the vehicle, not a comprehensive critique, which would require a thorough inspection and/or test drive.
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