Hi, I thought I might ask the group for suggestions on using a light duty trailer to haul my airplanes?

My goal is a couple of 1/4's scales in a four x six box type trailer. Locally a 4x6 box trailer is too tall and heavy and about $1000.

I'm thinking 4x6 but half height with an opening top. Anyone have any idea's?

I'm also concerned about bouncing too much at highway speed.

Thanks for your time and idea's


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Don't limit the size of your plans by the size of your trailer. Unless you build 2-piece wings, a 6-foot trailer won't carry many 1/4-scalers. Also, use the height to your advantage. You could even install a small workbench along one side (suitable for sit-down work).

Lower tire pressure will eliminate a lot of the bounce. So will ballast. Be sure you have proper padding and tie-downs for everything.

Let us know what you decide.

Dr.1 Driver "There's a Hun in the sun!"

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The direction *I* took involved about $1000, but let me acquire a multiple use trailer that fills several different tasks.

I bought a 5X10 utility trailer with 16" wheels because the small wheels on the kits (like what you are looking at) bounce the heck out of models. THEN I started building. We welded 2 foot box frame sides that bolt to the inside of the trailer at the uprights to the steel angle iron sides. Got some 1/2 square and had it bent on a curve so that it is 12 inches high in the center of a 60 inch run. Welded several of those to a square frame that was made to lay on top of the sides we had already built. Welded several to the front of the trailer box. Got several industrial hinges and welded them to the sides and top frame. Put a couple on the rear end and welded them to the built sides and a welded up box. Ground off the end of all the hinge pins so they could be removed. This made a rear door frame that could be opened to the right or left and a top frame that could be opened to the left or right AND even removed. Then we pop riveted V crimp galvanized roofing tin to the frames.

When I need a utility trailer with no sides, I remove the top, the door, and unbolt the sides. Otherwise I have a reasonably weather tight trailer that has carried 5 giant scale planes several hundred miles and supported a weeks worth of flying from time to time. The important thing is that when I wanted a trailer for family needs, I have one we use frequently. Guess who's "budget" the trailer came from!

Good luck choosing.

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Good advice with pictures under sub section = "Trailer - for Towing and Storage of Models"

Trailer - Alan Hewson Trailer - Roger Forgues Trailer - Giant Scale at =

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regards Alan T. Alan's Hobby, Model & RC Web Links
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Quite a few guys have gutted old popup campers and used them for plane trailers.

John VB

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Another great way to do it if you're the welder type is to buy a light duty boat trailer and then weld on the rectangular channels around the perimeter to form a floor size of whatever you want (10' x 5'6" is a good size). Then weld up a simple frame using cheap 1-1/2" x 1-1/2" channel up to maybe 4' high, and finally, frame up a lid that can be hinged to open. Now cover with either 1/4 marine ply, or better yet, 1/16" aluminum sheet, hook up some lights, and you're good to go. It may sound like some work, but it's only about as involved as building an airplane kit. In the end, you'll have a "real" trailer that you would likely have to pay over $2000 for if you had to buy it. You can probably find a used small boat trailer for under $100.


"jjvb" wrote in message news:eUGXc.2766$

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Then you shouldn't be looking at cheap OR light. Both are plane killers. Cheap light trailers have poor suspensions, and will leave the ground at the slightest provocation. The ideal plane hauler is a tandem axle trailer with a "tor-flex," "torqueflex" or "torsion" style suspension. Every bump is cut in half and the rubber-damped torsion suspension rides like a Cadillac. Next best is a single axle with torsion suspension.

After looking at and weighing all the options, from a big 7x16 with living quarters to building my own 4x8 from scratch, I ended up with a basic 7x14 tandem axle with torsion suspension, and I haven't regretted it.

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Mathew Kirsch

A question Craig......what type of vehicle are going to use to haul with???? If its a small car, then build it light ( square aluminum tube can be found at some metal/machinery/scrap surplus dealers ). If you have a car/suv/truck with a good towing capacity, then build it from steel. Also check with your states laws on building trailers.


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Mike R

Having owned a few trailers, I'll add the following. Light trailers simply beat the living crap out of the cargo. They also become airborne over potholes and expansion joints, introducing blows to the cargo at angles never imagined. Remember, airplane stuff is light by design. A whole lot of modeling stuff will still probably weigh less than 200 pounds.

I currently own a 4x8 landscape trailer, and a 5x10 enclosed trailer. The 4x8 weighs about 350, with leaf springs and 13" rims. The 5x10 weighs 950 with a Torflex axle, radial tires, and 15" rims. The ride quality and care of the cargo is night and day, even when both have a

5-600 pound load on them. The open trailer can be scary to tow empty on bumpy roads. If at all possible, spend the extra money for a Torflex axle and large, radial tires. This makes a huge difference to your cargo.

Either trailer is easily towed by my 4 cylinder Subaru Outback or 6 cylinder Jeep Wrangler. Both vehicles list 2000 pound towing maximums in their manuals. The identical Subaru is rated for 3000 pounds (with brakes) in Canada, so the 2k number is probably a USA lawyer number. The Jeep is only limited by it's short wheelbase, the same drive train is rated for 5k on their longer vehicles. Check yours before you buy! Many cars, some not that small, are not rated to tow ANYTHING, due to they way their unibodies are constructed.

If you don't have a vehicle that can comfortably tow a 1200-1500 pound load, might I suggest a used van? Utilities like phone and power companies often unload vans for $2-3000, sometimes less. They're usually not cosmetically pretty, but the ones I've purchased were mechanically sound and included shelving and a cargo screen. Of course, the van will need to be registered, insured, and taxed.

Have fun, Barry

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