Estimating your teardrop weight

Anything to do with mechanical, construction etc

Estimating your teardrop weight

Postby angib » Sun Jul 13, 2014 6:07 am

Sharon Heisley has done a magnificent job in cataloguing over a hundred teardrop weights and this has given the opportunity to reverse the process and say what does a typical teardrop weigh?

The data is shown in the graph below, for those that read graphs - weight up the vertical scale and plan area (body length times body width, both in feet) on the horizontal axis. The red squares are foamies, I believe, which shows they can be the lightest trailers. The biggest thing to notice is the huge range of weights at each size. This gives the most important conclusion - the weight of a trailer depends a lot on how heavily it is built. That sounds obvious, but it is important to recognise that when someone asks "how much does a 4x8 Benroy weigh?", there is not a single right answer, just a huge range of right answers.

Sharon trailer weight graph.JPG
Sharon trailer weight graph.JPG (59.27 KiB) Viewed 5484 times

Excel worked out the black average line thorough the middle and I've added the red 'Heavy' and green 'Light' lines by eye. These can be turned round into simple formulas for estimating trailer weight, as follows:

Light - Trailer weight (pounds) = 15 x Body Length (feet) x Body Width (feet)

Average - Trailer weight (pounds) = 25 x Body Length (feet) x Body Width (feet)

Heavy - Trailer weight (pounds) = 40 x Body Length (feet) x Body Width (feet)

And, yes, that means the heavy trailers are nearly three times the weight of the light trailers for any given size! That's why there isn't any one 'right' answer to what will/should my trailer weigh? You need to calibrate your own behaviour first. If you design aircraft structures for a living, you can probably build at the 'light' weight. If you don't believe plywood is made in any thickness but 3/4", you will probably build at the 'heavy' weight
User avatar
angib
5000 Club
5000 Club
 
Posts: 5783
Images: 231
Joined: Fri Apr 30, 2004 2:04 pm
Location: (Olde) England

Re: Estimating your teardrop weight

Postby citylights » Sun Jul 13, 2014 8:30 am

Excellent! Love to see statistics in use.

The variability of teardrop weight is not entirely dependent on the construction. It is greatly dependent on options too. An air conditioner, mini-fridge, built in stove, 15-inch tires, and battery will take a light weight teardrop right up to the heavyweight line. The difference is only a couple hundred pounds.

I am glad to see... Mine is not above the red line! 8)
User avatar
citylights
500 Club
 
Posts: 591
Images: 1
Joined: Sun May 12, 2013 12:27 pm
Location: Las Vegas, Nevada

Re: Estimating your teardrop weight

Postby 48Rob » Sun Jul 13, 2014 5:51 pm

Andrew,

Thanks for your continuing contributions! :thumbsup:

Rob
Waiting for "someday" will leave you on your deathbed wondering why you didn't just rearrange your priorities and enjoy the time you had, instead of waiting for a "better" time to come along...

Visit Rob's World Web Page!
User avatar
48Rob
Super Lifetime Member
 
Posts: 3861
Images: 4
Joined: Thu Nov 17, 2005 6:47 pm
Location: Central Illinois
Top

Re: Estimating your teardrop weight

Postby eggsalad » Sun Jul 13, 2014 8:46 pm

I'll call the formula "good by me". My TTT is most definitely not a teardrop. It's a 4'x7' box for sleeping only.

By this math, it should weigh about 420lbs. Because I used an old PWC trailer, my weight is a bit higher, at 470lbs. I'll call that fair.
eggsalad
Teardrop Master
 
Posts: 235
Joined: Wed Aug 21, 2013 3:39 pm
Location: Las Vegas, NV, USA
Top

Re: Estimating your teardrop weight

Postby working on it » Sat Jul 26, 2014 10:11 pm

If the weight of "heavy" trailers are usually near the median described by this formula Heavy - Trailer weight (pounds) = 40 x Body Length (feet) x Body Width (feet)
then my build is in its own category, the Neutron Star-Class-Trailer weight (pounds) = 55.5 x Body Length (feet) x Body Width (feet). Not only did I use 3/4" plywood in my build,
angib wrote: If you don't believe plywood is made in any thickness but 3/4", you will probably build at the 'heavy' weight
but incorporated neutronium wherever I could, to ensure that it would grip the road. EDIT 10-26-14:Weight reduction program still in progress. Now weighing in at only 1518 lbs, just 47.44 x body length x body width.
sky's%20the%20limit%20for%20weight!.jpg
sky's%20the%20limit%20for%20weight!.jpg (45.9 KiB) Viewed 4208 times
Last edited by working on it on Sun Oct 26, 2014 4:55 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Green Lantern Corpsmen...("Northstar"/dual fuel splinter group) >
    VEHICLES:
  • '09 HHR Panel 2.2l , '08 Cobalt 2.2l DailyDrivers
  • '66 Chevelle Malibu 7.3l (10.7sec-1/4mi) NostalgiaDragRacer
  • '04 Chevy 2500HD 6.0l TowVehicle
  • '98 GMC 1500 5.7l TowVehicle
    TRAILERS:
  • '99 16ft CarHauler
  • '07 Puma20ft TravelTrailer
  • '13 "Mechatavismus Minimus 4x8-HHRv" TinyTravelTrailer
  • 119495 *****************107473
User avatar
working on it
1000 Club
1000 Club
 
Posts: 1152
Images: 381
Joined: Tue Oct 04, 2011 9:05 pm
Location: DFW Texas
Top

Re: Estimating your teardrop weight

Postby Sparksalot » Sat Jul 26, 2014 10:26 pm

Very cool graph. My own Compass Rose falls between the medium and heavy lines, only because I could not find a source of 1/2" oak veneer 4x10 plywood.

BTW, 5x10 coming in around 1400#. Any heavier and I'd want to have brakes because I can feel her pushing at times.
You don't know the power of the Dork Side.

The Adventures of Creepy Cat.
http://www.tnttt.com/viewtopic.php?t=27156

The Compass Rose build thread.
http://www.mikenchell.com/forums/viewto ... 22f4fd9ea1
User avatar
Sparksalot
Silver Donating Member
 
Posts: 873
Images: 393
Joined: Fri Feb 15, 2008 9:36 pm
Location: Texas by God (TX, Buda, TX)
Top

Re: Estimating your teardrop weight

Postby doug hodder » Sun Jul 27, 2014 9:18 pm

48Rob wrote:Andrew,

Thanks for your continuing contributions! :thumbsup:

Rob



Amen...I've working on my 7th build and have called on Andrew a number of times. His expertise has always given me a feeling of confidence in my frame builds. I can weld, but am by no means an engineer. I've really learned a lot from this gentleman. I come in light and strong which is what I'm shooting for. Thanks Andrew!

And a big thank you to Sharon for putting this chart together! It's a great resource for other builders. Doug
doug hodder
*Snoop Dougie Doug
 
Posts: 12624
Images: 562
Joined: Tue Dec 14, 2004 11:20 pm
Top

Re: Estimating your teardrop weight

Postby mikeschn » Fri Aug 08, 2014 3:41 pm

Now it's sticky! :D Thanks Sharon!

Mike...
The quality is remembered long after the price is forgotten, so build your teardrop with the best materials...
User avatar
mikeschn
Site Admin
 
Posts: 18971
Images: 462
Joined: Tue Apr 13, 2004 11:01 am
Location: MI
Top

Re: Estimating your teardrop weight

Postby pcs » Sat Oct 04, 2014 10:31 pm

Starting a first build. Dose this formula include the initial trailer weight, or should I add it? :o
pcs
Teardrop Inspector
 
Posts: 1
Joined: Sat Oct 04, 2014 10:19 am
Top

Re: Estimating your teardrop weight

Postby Sparksalot » Sun Oct 05, 2014 12:25 am

pcs wrote:Starting a first build. Dose this formula include the initial trailer weight, or should I add it? :o


My tear is one of the data points. I included the frame in the total.
You don't know the power of the Dork Side.

The Adventures of Creepy Cat.
http://www.tnttt.com/viewtopic.php?t=27156

The Compass Rose build thread.
http://www.mikenchell.com/forums/viewto ... 22f4fd9ea1
User avatar
Sparksalot
Silver Donating Member
 
Posts: 873
Images: 393
Joined: Fri Feb 15, 2008 9:36 pm
Location: Texas by God (TX, Buda, TX)
Top

Re: Estimating your teardrop weight

Postby S. Heisley » Mon Oct 13, 2014 8:09 pm

.
The weights are for completed (or at least camp-able) trailers, including the chassis (metal frame, wheels, etc.).
It is said that home builds are rarely truly completed because builders are always finding ways to improve them. :roll:

Please recognize that the weights are not a formula but rather the highs, lows, and average weights volunteered by our forum members.
What your teardrop will weigh is mostly dependent upon you and how you build yours and, yes, that includes the weight of your chassis as well as your cabin.
User avatar
S. Heisley
Super Lifetime Member
 
Posts: 7873
Images: 470
Joined: Mon Sep 17, 2007 10:02 am
Location: No. California
Top

5x9 Benroy

Postby noseoil » Sat Nov 08, 2014 7:12 am

Figured I should post this here, since I'm starting and have no idea what it will weigh based on real-world experience with trailers. I set up a spreadsheet on the "rolling weight" estimate, and it comes in at a hefty 1322# including the frame & all the stuff inside. How close is this really? I don't know at this point but it's based on a summation of parts, materials and "stuff" which will be used in the build. I'll edit this post once I'm done and can get it weighed on a certified scale.

The frame is heavier than I would have built myself, but it was a "good deal" & too good to pass up, since it was a commercially made flat top which was about the right size already. It's actually a little too well made, since it tips the scales at a hefty 510#, a bare rolling weight for the frame & tongue box after stripping as much off as I could. My projected weight comes out at 29.33 pounds per square foot (5x9 Benroy) and the cost will be about $110 per square foot (materials only, no real labor other than a little welding by a friend in his shop). Let's see how I do with my figuring. I'm tracking hours but have no idea what it will take to finish, so no estimate on that part yet.

Perhaps another chart on cost per square foot & hours per square foot in the future might be in order? Thanks for posting this chart, it's a great idea. Here's the obligatory "before" shot.

Image

The "after" shot will be ready in the next year or two..... Best, tim
Build log: viewtopic.php?f=50&t=60248
The time you spend planning is more important than the time you spend building.........

Image
User avatar
noseoil
1000 Club
1000 Club
 
Posts: 1242
Images: 66
Joined: Sun Apr 27, 2014 8:46 am
Top

Re: Estimating your teardrop weight

Postby drhill » Tue Dec 16, 2014 3:56 pm

510 lbs for that trailer with the tongue box isn't too bad at all. I built a 5' x 10' flat deck with plywood deck and a long tongue (about 65") to accommodate a bike rack. The trailer has ST205/75R14 trailer tires, 3500 lb axel and 2500 lb springs (1250 per side). The trailer weighs 585 lbs complete with spare tire, but excluding the tongue box or teardrop pod. I want the trailer to be heavy enough to haul a good load of firewood, lumber, furniture or whatever. I weighed it once at a weigh scale at 1960 lbs and that was with the teardrop pod, bike rack and 4 bikes, two coolers, 10 gal water, 2 propane tanks, folding canopy, folding table, tent for other people --- fully loaded for a 4 day weekend. I am real curious to go weigh it with the tongue box and pod but no other gear, but that is about 50 km each way. Maybe in the spring.
enjoy your building.
User avatar
drhill
Teardrop Master
 
Posts: 108
Images: 29
Joined: Wed Nov 06, 2013 5:00 pm
Location: Calgary, AB
Top

Re: Estimating your teardrop weight

Postby Dalorin » Mon Apr 13, 2015 6:49 pm

I know that this is an old thread, however, I'm wondering if anyone knows how much weight you save if you do not skin in aluminum.

My trailer alone tips the scales at 550 lbs. I wanted 14" wheels and that meant the manufacturer used a larger axle etc. I decided not to skin in aluminum for many reasons but I imagine that I saved myself some weight as well.

I'm trying to keep the total weight under 1500 because that's the max for my 4 cylinder RAV4.
Dalorin
Teardrop Master
 
Posts: 135
Joined: Wed Dec 31, 2014 4:50 am
Top

Re: Estimating your teardrop weight

Postby S. Heisley » Mon Apr 13, 2015 7:56 pm

Dalorin wrote:I know that this is an old thread, however, I'm wondering if anyone knows how much weight you save if you do not skin in aluminum.

My trailer alone tips the scales at 550 lbs. I wanted 14" wheels and that meant the manufacturer used a larger axle etc. I decided not to skin in aluminum for many reasons but I imagine that I saved myself some weight as well.

I'm trying to keep the total weight under 1500 because that's the max for my 4 cylinder RAV4.


I believe that this would, again, depend upon the builder. That is because one must consider the type of paint, whether there is epoxy and/or primer put on before the paint or aluminum; the number of coats of paint; and, possibly even the thickness of the aluminium sheeting. So, it might be hard to say.

If you look at the cans of paint, they will sometimes tell you how much the paint will weigh, once applied and dried, and you could probably calculate it out for both the paint or the aluminum that you are considering and at least come close.
User avatar
S. Heisley
Super Lifetime Member
 
Posts: 7873
Images: 470
Joined: Mon Sep 17, 2007 10:02 am
Location: No. California
Top

Next

Return to Teardrop Construction Tips & Techniques

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Google [Bot], MSNbot Media and 1 guest