I hope this is the right place for this.

Design & Construction of anything that's not a teardrop e.g. Grasshoppers or Sunspots

I hope this is the right place for this.

Postby Thelgord » Mon Mar 23, 2015 6:54 pm

So ... I finally got around to starting my TT build. I started by getting this off of Craigslist:
http://i.imgur.com/NxNuw5G.jpg

I am not sure if this the correct place, but it didn't seem to fit anywhere else. Basically it is a utility box mounted on a trailer frame. It currently opens at both ends. The "cargo" area is 4 feet wide and 8 feet 4 inches long. This will eventually be the "living area". As I have never owned a trailer before, this is a big project for me, so I will undoubtedly have many questions.

Fist step was a good washing, and most of the paint came off. I think they used latex house paint.

Next I removed the "rack" and various screws and bits that were attached for no real reason that I could see.

The next step is to get a small mountain of primer paint and paint remover and start stripping it down to bare metal so I can begin "rust rescue".

The current axel and hubs function, but I will be changing it out as I do not trust the less than stellar weld job that is currently holding it on to the frame. Any advice or comments are always welcome.
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Re: I hope this is the right place for this.

Postby Redneck Teepee » Mon Mar 23, 2015 9:41 pm

Should be an interesting build, I'm assuming you have a pretty stout Tow Vehicle, as I'm sure you know by now that that's a lot of weight to lug around. With a small TV I think you'd be challenged. Keep us posted and we like pic's. :D :D
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Re: I hope this is the right place for this.

Postby Thelgord » Mon Mar 23, 2015 10:51 pm

I have a 2013 Toyota Tacoma, 4L V6. This trailer is built like a tank and it pulls like it. But it pulls strait and my Tacoma seems to handle it well. Maneuvering this thing by hand in a gravel driveway is a bit of work out though. I think I need a wheeled jack/leg/post thing in the front. Not sure what that piece is called.
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Re: I hope this is the right place for this.

Postby Redneck Teepee » Tue Mar 24, 2015 12:23 am

You mention changing the axle and hubs, I would consider also adding electric brakes to help slow er down in unison with your Tacoma. :D :D
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Re: I hope this is the right place for this.

Postby GerryS » Tue Mar 24, 2015 4:54 am

Brakes on a trailer are a must have in my book. The extra thousand pounds doesn't seem like much, but the brakes on most cars and light trucks are adequate for themselves, but the extra weight makes stopping, especially panic stopping take on a whole new level of ... Excitement. I don't care how careful YOU are while driving, some idiot somewhere at some time is going to pull out in front of you. It's unavoidable.

There are far too many regulations on our lives today....but brakes on a trailer are one that I might actually support. Those who know me outside of the forum would be shocked to hear me say that. When you are spending thousands of dollars. And potentially a hundred hours or more, it's a small investment before you consider the possibility of loss of life and limb.
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Re: I hope this is the right place for this.

Postby Shadow Catcher » Tue Mar 24, 2015 5:26 am

I will echo the previous two posters and add brakes are in my seldom humble opinion a necessity. Our first teardrop did not have them and while Ohio is mostly flat (we call the over pass over I80 a hill) stopping was impacted (pun intended). Tear two, does have them and they make a huge difference, particularly in mountains. better to have them and not need them than to need them and not have them. I will also bet that your trailer weight will be above the threshold that some/many states require them.
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Re: I hope this is the right place for this.

Postby Thelgord » Thu Mar 26, 2015 11:23 pm

Thanks for all of the advice. I have been looking at several axel options and after pulling this trailer, I think breaks would make a huge difference. Can you "lock" trailer breaks when parked? Or is it just free turning until you actually use them?

There is soooo much information here it can be a bit daunting.
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Re: I hope this is the right place for this.

Postby Redneck Teepee » Fri Mar 27, 2015 1:04 am

A lot of the military trailers have parking brakes on them, which is or was a lever activated by hand like you do your car. Most trailer brakes are electric with some being hydraulic surge type. The electric ones use magnets to activate, thru a cab mounted controller.

The hydraulic type use the motion or inertia of you trailer energy created by applying your tow vehicle brakes.

To back up the old surge/hydraulic brakes, you had to get out and pin the master cylinder on the trailer tongue from moving and applying the brakes, the newer ones have a little 12 volt normally open solenoid valve in line right behind the trailer master cylinder, that is activated (closes) when your back up lights come on, that little valve blocks or locks out any pressure generated from backing up, and then returns to normally open position when you shift out of reverse killing the 12 volt power to it allowing your brakes to work again in a forward motion.

To answer your question...no most do not. Hope I was of help. :D :D :D
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Re: I hope this is the right place for this.

Postby Thelgord » Fri Mar 27, 2015 8:19 am

As I said, a lot of information. But yes, very helpful :)
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Re: I hope this is the right place for this.

Postby Thelgord » Fri Jun 26, 2015 9:13 pm

OK, time for an update. I will try to post a picture or two tomorrow. For now it is too dark to take adequate pictures.

I have gutted the entire "center" or cargo area. Got every yanked out, and the floor was by far the hardest. The "roof rack" thing that was bolted on was also removed, resized, then welded to the top of the trailer. This will also be my frame from the roof and windows. However, before I could get any of that done, I have spent sooooo much time fighting rust. This stuff is everywhere. So far, I have only had to cut out one small section and weld in a patch. Seems like I do is prep work, so it felt really good to get the frame for the roof reattached.

Tomorrow, as I said, I will get some progress pictures up. I will also be (once again) prepping the edges and cross members for a new floor. I have some 5/8" plywood that I will be using for the floor. That, and a whole lot of water sealant. I still need to go and buy some of that "black stuff" that seems to be popular. I am hoping to have the new floor in by Monday.

Once again, thanks for everyones input. Even though I haven't been posting on here, I have been reading a lot. Then I read some more.
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Re: I hope this is the right place for this.

Postby Thelgord » Sat Jun 27, 2015 8:26 pm

Ok, as promised, the pics!

Image

Image

Spent the day grinding and painting. Just some rustolium to prevent further rest. The downsides to working outside are 1) You are very weather dependent and 2) You are very weather dependent.
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Re: I hope this is the right place for this.

Postby Junkboy999 » Fri Aug 14, 2015 1:44 pm

I'm wondering where are you going to place in your floor.

If you place it on the top crossbars in the picture you will have tons of of storage space. All most to much.
If the floor was in the bottom lower area you might get a trailer you can all most stand in. You might be able to do both.
Have part of your bed stay up on the top bars. The bed cushions can transform into a bench with storage under it, and the
rest of the floor is at the lower level. A few camper people built here have a small lifting roof section where a person can stand and get dress.
This is usually at one end and not over the bed. Other have a small section of the floor that is lowered so they can have a table and sit up proper and not just sit up on a bed style.
You might have the potential to do both in this trailer.

If you have a light weight fiberglass top shell (like a upside down tub ) on that top rack ( take out that center cross bar ) you can have a small one foot (or 2) raise and have a camper you can stand in.

Oh and here a link I stumbled while looking for a good side view of a utility trailer

http://www.doityourselfrv.com/pop-up-tr ... ler-combo/
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Re: I hope this is the right place for this.

Postby Thelgord » Sat Oct 15, 2016 7:00 pm

Update ...

Since I last posted a lot has happened. Not much to the trailer, but a lot. Shortly after my last post I came down on orders (I am in the Army) to move to Georgia so I threw now a cheep and simply plywood floor and loaded up what I could. Honestly, I didn't have a lot of weight in the trailer, but the suspension was nearly maxed out. I was very surprised. On the way, the leaf springs shifted and the trailer dropped on one side and rub against the tire. No blow out fortunately but it did require a highlift jack and a sledge hammer to get them all lined back up. Not fun at 3am in a truck stop parking lot. That seemed to do the trick though as it got me the rest of the way.

Once in Georgia I rented a temp house until I could purchase one with a decent area to work on the trailer. I will be clear of the rental by the end of the month and have already started working on the trailer again.

I removed the plywood floor I had put in, and after a lot of cutting finally got one of the boxes off today. Holy cow are these things heavy. An easy 400 pounds each. When starting the final cuts I placed two sets of cinder blocks, stacked two high, under both end to catch the cargo box. It would drop around 1/8 inch when cut loose. The back end was heavy enough to crush one of the cinderblocks. Fortunately the rest held up. Weak block maybe? Who knows, but OMG these things are heavy. Did I mention how heavy these things are? LOL ...

Just in weight savings from the boxes alone I think I am ahead of the game. I have decided that they will make good tool shelves in my new work shed and they will not be going back on the trailer. The side without a tool box now sits a full four inches taller. Tomorrow when it gets light out I will snaps some pics of my progress.
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Re: I hope this is the right place for this.

Postby S. Heisley » Sat Oct 15, 2016 7:24 pm

Thelgord, did you say those boxes are heavy? :o :lol:
It sounds like a good thing that you are removing them! :thumbsup:
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Re: I hope this is the right place for this.

Postby Thelgord » Sat Oct 15, 2016 8:21 pm

I have decided to completely tear down the trailer and start over. This thing was way over built, now I am trying to lighten it up.
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