Edmonton local: designing a bike trailer- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
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    Smile Edmonton local: designing a bike trailer

    Hi All,

    Just thought I'd give you a heads up...I'm starting to work at building a bike trailer for anyone who wants to haul around some stuff with their bikes. I'm not about to compete with Bob, Haro or any of the commercial outfits, but I'm looking at it as something that can be a DIY project.

    I have a preliminary design together and I'm collaborating with a guy in the US who has done a few. When I get to the construction side of things, I'll post some pics of the build plus make the plans available if there is any interest. So far, it looks like the trailer will weigh in at about 33lbs with all the running hardware (it'll be plus a little more with a wood bottom deck). I'll post a sketch in the near future.

    If anyone local has expertise in welding, please let me know...I could use some pointers for MIG / wire welders as I've only dealt with oxy-acet. cutting and brazing in the past.

    PS (added later): Also, if anyone sees anything that raises a flag, please let me know....I'm early enough in this that I can still make changes to improve the design.
    Last edited by Psycho Mike; 09-19-2006 at 11:26 AM.
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  2. #2
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    Well, here's the rendering from my CAD software...shows just the frame so far. I've still got a couple reinforcements to add, but it'll give you an idea...



    Edit 1: Ok...added the reinforcements and put in some discs for wheels...the red are the ones for the trailer, the blue is the rear tire of the bike.
    Last edited by Psycho Mike; 09-19-2006 at 12:33 AM.
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  3. #3
    ravingbikefiend
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    I was thinking that a relatively light frame could be built to accomodate a ready made bin or storage unit.

    If the bin was fixed to the frame then the higher side rails may not be essential and a frame could be built to accomodate multiple removable bins and perhaps a removable deck as it wouldn't be needed if the bins were in place.

    My neighbour just happens to be a part time welder and we were discussing bicycle trailer building the other day... I think he's might be up for the job after he gets his roof finished.
    I ride with 65'er...he's a mountain goat....But then again, we need to throw him in the mud and pack his pockets with lead shot before a scale will read him. - Psycho Mike

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  4. #4
    ravingbikefiend
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    PS - I can supply a huge amount of bicycle tubing that could be recycled into some very nice frames.
    I ride with 65'er...he's a mountain goat....But then again, we need to throw him in the mud and pack his pockets with lead shot before a scale will read him. - Psycho Mike

    -Environmental stickers don't mean shite when they are stuck to CARS!-

  5. #5
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    Yes, actually there are a couple designs out there for Rubbermaid totes and coolers.

    I had considered that sort of system, but I was thinking that some things don't need high sides (the ones I'm planning are only 25cm tall), but if the frame is a little stronger, it is easy enough to add a tote or cooler, or have plywood sides to help shore up big stuff or even lash things to the trailer.

    That being said, do you think that I should have a little guard rail up from the sides to help protect the wheels? It'll add weight, but it may make it easier to carry wider stuff (above the wheel level).
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  6. #6
    ravingbikefiend
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    I'd make sure that none of the cargo could shift and go into the spokes as that would be a bad thing but perhaps guards could be fabricated for the wheels...these would also priotect the cargo from being splashed and splattered.

    A low bed trailer could be designed to accomodate a swappable system where the trailer could be used as a flatbed (I need one of these for transporting bikes and parts) or have an enclosed / waterproof / lockable tote used for other things like groceries, cyclo-touring, etc.

    I'd just make the interior rail measurement was a close match to a commercially available tote so it would be a good fit and perhaps bolts could be set into the bottom rails to secure the tote from the inside (to prevent theft) or secure the floor panel which I would make removable if a tote was used. This would reduce a little weight.

    I was looking at another option... a colleague and I were talking about fitting a wheelchair with a hitch so it (and it's passenger could be towed) and in looking at a few chairs I thought that one of these might also adapt itself well to being a useful bike trailer that could also be collapsed for storage.

    A standard wheelchair will carry 200 pounds so is definately sturdy enough and I discovered that ready made hitch kits for wheelchairs are available for about $65.00 U.S.

    It warrants some more investigation and experimentation.
    I ride with 65'er...he's a mountain goat....But then again, we need to throw him in the mud and pack his pockets with lead shot before a scale will read him. - Psycho Mike

    -Environmental stickers don't mean shite when they are stuck to CARS!-

  7. #7
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    I actually found an easy solution to the wheel problem....I raised the level of the upper deck by 4"...it clears the tire (allowing the option of a flat deck on top for big stuff). As for totes, it's pretty close for fitting two big Rubbermaid bins in the trailer...a cooler for sure with lots of options for securing it and adding other stuff.

    I'm thinking of using that steel mesh for a deck (should be plenty strong and not a lot of weight) but with cut-outs and tie down rings for securing things to the main frame of the trailer. Other than the wheels and the legs powering this rig, the frame should be sufficient to carry 200+ lbs (based on what has been done with lighter materials such as EMT tubing).

    Hey 65er -> in your collection of parts, do you have a couple of sturdy, fairly close to matching front 26" mtb rims? I've got tubes and tires, I just need the wheels. I've got a spool of some good instrumentation wiring I can swap if you could use it (could be used for trailer lights, burried telephone line (no conduit required) or such).
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  8. #8
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    Ok...one more update...

    The cargo bed of the trailer is getting downsized. Although the size would have been nice, I managed a proper mock-up at the office today... Sheesh, the thing was going to be the size of a small bookcase!!

    It's getting parried down to 60 x 90 cm cargo area (enough for 2 coleman coolers with room for a couple extra 2L pop bottles in between....party wagon

    I'll post a new rendering when I have a chance.
    Last edited by Psycho Mike; 09-21-2006 at 10:37 PM.
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  9. #9
    ravingbikefiend
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    I probably have a pair of decent front wheels bouncing around the shop... I don't know what I would do with a spool of instrumentation wiring (yet) but it might come in handy for some future project.
    I ride with 65'er...he's a mountain goat....But then again, we need to throw him in the mud and pack his pockets with lead shot before a scale will read him. - Psycho Mike

    -Environmental stickers don't mean shite when they are stuck to CARS!-

  10. #10
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    Cool, keep me posted

    Here's the most recent incarnation. The "box" is 90cm long x 60 cm wide x 30 cm high. The smaller size drops the weight to an estimated 35 lbs with a light floor and all running hardware (tires, wheels, tubes, hitch, attachment to the bike, axles, drop-outs and so forth).

    Last edited by Psycho Mike; 09-22-2006 at 11:48 AM.
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  11. #11
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    I had a gander at the Chariot hitches the other night... unfortunately, Chariot is using 1" aluminum tubing with a 3/4" shank plastic hitch. I'm exploring some other options as I don't feel like shaving that much plastic off the hitch to make it work with my rig...

    If I could find a busted Chariot tow arm with a segment of the tubing and the hitch intact, I could probably work out a way to fit the Chariot tubing over my tow arm and bolt it in place. (If anyone comes across one, please let me know.) If not, I'm looking at Carry Freedom's "u" bracket hitch, provided it isn't too expensive.
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  12. #12
    ravingbikefiend
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    I was working on hitch layouts tonight and figure that the lower axle or frame mounted "U" hitch is going to be the most effective in reducing down force on the rear wheel. Fabricating such a unit wouldn't take much work at all if one had the right tools and materials...

    Using narrow 26 inch rubber or larger road wheels (27's) would also reduce the rolling resistance of the trailer which would improve both the performance on flat ground and on climbs.
    I ride with 65'er...he's a mountain goat....But then again, we need to throw him in the mud and pack his pockets with lead shot before a scale will read him. - Psycho Mike

    -Environmental stickers don't mean shite when they are stuck to CARS!-

  13. #13
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    I've settled on the MTB rims as that way I can keep less parts around / have common parts between the bike and trailer. For the moment, I have the original ACX tires that came with my bike to use...they are a 2.2" tire but they are a low knob so they will do for now (eventually I'll put semi-slicks on it).

    The hitches I'm looking at are lower axle hitches...both attach to the left side of the bike and neither should interfere with disc brakes.
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  14. #14
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    Woohoo...I love freebies!!!

    Thanks to a wonderful guy at MEC I have an older, likely demo'd, towing arm for use on the trailer. It'll need a little tweaking, but it is a chainstay attachment (rather than a QR mount).

    Now I just need to draft it so I can tweak my design to make use of it.
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  15. #15
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    Got the hitch mostly fabricated today.... 0.85lbs for what I have and maybe another half pound for the adapter to my 3/4" square tubing for the main trailer.

    On another note, I had a chance to check out a 4 ft length of the 3/4" tubing at Rona today....it'll be a pretty dang strong trailer when all is said and done.
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  16. #16
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    This morning on the way to work I saw the neighbourhood bike scavenger with his upgraded trailer and thought of this thread. He used a couple front shocks to mount the wheels to his trailer. If you're interested, I have a couple of sets of old RST shocks that are yours for the taking. I'm not sure what to do with them other than leave them for the forementioned scavenger. You don't want those 2 litre bottles of pepsi to get too shaken up...

  17. #17
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    Thanks for the offer Ribald, but at present there are no plans for suspension with trailer v1.0.

    Trailer 2.0 may have that as an option but I haven't thought that far yet. Another option for clearing out the garage is 65'er....he was considering doing a trailer out of old bike parts (including forks to hold the wheels).
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  18. #18
    ravingbikefiend
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    I could probably find a use for some old shocks... since I rebuild bikes for those less fortunate than myself those free bits are always a good thing to have.

    I saved an early to mid 70's CCM Elite 5 speed (ladies / mixte frame) from the crusher and have already found it a new home. All I had to do was replace a brake housing and fill the tires with air to make this cruiser road-worthy.

    Shocks on a trailer would be a great idea if the trailer was going to be carrrying one's kids... hmmmm...
    I ride with 65'er...he's a mountain goat....But then again, we need to throw him in the mud and pack his pockets with lead shot before a scale will read him. - Psycho Mike

    -Environmental stickers don't mean shite when they are stuck to CARS!-

  19. #19
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    Well,

    I'm hopeful to pick up some steel in the next couple weeks...which means I'll be able to cut and perhaps start practicing some welding soon in anticipation of full-on fabrication.
    As if four times wasn't enough-> Psycho Mike's 2013 Ride to Conquer Cancer Page

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  20. #20
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    Woohoo...expense cheque in hand...now I just have to find time and borrow a truck to get my steel.
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  21. #21
    ravingbikefiend
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    Mike - would a van work ?
    I ride with 65'er...he's a mountain goat....But then again, we need to throw him in the mud and pack his pockets with lead shot before a scale will read him. - Psycho Mike

    -Environmental stickers don't mean shite when they are stuck to CARS!-

  22. #22
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    Actually, I was going to borrow a truck from work for a couple hours... I'll likely be using a corner of one of our warehouses for my project anyway, so it seemed easy enough. Besides, I am hoping I can get the guys to cut the tubing in half...they come in 24' lengths.
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  23. #23
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    Ok...here is what the hitch looks like:

    This is from what is the underside....I've got it set up so that the tighening wheel is on the bottom, the clamp gets the most bite on the chainstay and everything is clear of my rotor on the back while still being able to get the best connection to the frame. The actual connection point is about 1.5" out from the end of my QR skewer and matches the 45 degree angle my towing arm will be coming in at.

    Including the safety strap, spring, elastomer and everything, it is 0.95 lbs...with the 1" square aluminum tube piece to attach it to my 3/4" square metal trailer frame, I figure the entire connection will be 1.5 lbs...which shaves 0.5 lbs from what I was expecting (gasp! I'm becoming a trailer weight weenie).
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  24. #24
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    woohoo...

    Next saturday I should be picking up some steel and doing some cutting

    "It has begun!"
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  25. #25
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    Little update. This Saturday I'll be picking up the steel from a local supplier, taking it back to one of the warehouses which my work has and doing the initial cutting to fabricate the pieces.

    I'll bring along my camera to snap some pics of the "before" and "after" of the steel and to document this part of the work. Who knows, I may even get a "during" if I can get the camera set up right.
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  26. #26
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    Admiral! There be steel here!

    heheheh


    Well, as promised...this was the steel weekend Here are a couple pics to show you all the progress:



    This is a shot of the four 12' lengths of raw steel tubing I picked up.



    Presto Change-o! Psycho Mike gets out the cut-off saw and starts the rough cuts...fabrication of the trailer itself has begun!



    And here is the rough layout of the rough cut steel. Looks like I was planning! The cut off saw isn't precise in its angles, but it puts me ballpark. I'll be trimming the steel to the final cut lengths and proper cut angles now that things are a little more user friendly in terms of lengths.

    The next step after the final trimming is to get a little more familiar with the wire welder and start joining steel. Once the main frame is together, it'll be time to fabricate the drop-outs for the wheels, get that all aligned and then weld those on. After that, it is the fabriaction of the hitch to trailer attachment. Finally, it'll be clean it up (likely a quick sandblasting), priming and then painting to match the bike
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  27. #27
    ravingbikefiend
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    I canna wait to see this thing finished.
    I ride with 65'er...he's a mountain goat....But then again, we need to throw him in the mud and pack his pockets with lead shot before a scale will read him. - Psycho Mike

    -Environmental stickers don't mean shite when they are stuck to CARS!-

  28. #28
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    Well, once I get my "final" or "good" cuts done, I can start putting it together. I'll start with the main frame for now....I'll need to get the wheels from you to see if I've made the wheel well extensions the right size.

    I'll post more pics when I get to the "final" cuts and when I start welding.
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  29. #29
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    Yowsa...

    I tried a little bit with the welder on the extra pieces of steel I have...sheesh. I don't have the experience I need to do a good job of the welding. I know I'll need to run a little hotter an amperage and should try getting a bit of a channel going on the cut ends to get full penetration...but...my welds sure as heck ain't pretty. Got a couple that we fairly decent for strength..not ideal, but decent...but for the most part, MIG is a different type of animal than what I'm used to. I may just have to consider tracking down someone with more experience who'd be able to do a better job for the price of a bottle or something.

    Also, anyone know someone with a small sandblaster? Once I get the "good" cuts in, I should try to clean up the steel to help with getting good contact for welding.
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  30. #30
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    Ok...little update. I managed to get in and do a little grinding on the tubing today, getting it cleaned up for welding. I'm about 1/2 way done and will need to adjust a few of the angles before I put them together, but I'm still making progress.

    I'll likely finish the cleaning up and then try a little more with the welder. I have a better idea now of the settings I need to use and some of the prep I'll need to do on the tube ends.

    I'll keep you posted, though it should progress reasonably well once I get the settings right and get the hang of this little wire welder.
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  31. #31
    ravingbikefiend
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    It sounds like you have a good handle on what you need to do... a little more prep and cleaning will make it easier to get that channel going and make solid welds.

    Once the parts are aligned and all the angle are right I'd tack weld them together and then work on doing a final prepping of the surfaces and edges with a grinder before that final welding happens.
    I ride with 65'er...he's a mountain goat....But then again, we need to throw him in the mud and pack his pockets with lead shot before a scale will read him. - Psycho Mike

    -Environmental stickers don't mean shite when they are stuck to CARS!-

  32. #32
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    I'll be at the warehouse the week after Christmas. If I had access to a sandblaster, I'd haul the pieces out for a good cleaning before going any further....but I don't, so I can't. What I am doing, though, is testing everything out on the leftover pieces.

    I can get the test ends the way I'd have them from the grinder (including angled to get a channel for the welding) and then try laying a bead to see how it does. It would be a little easier if I had a proper bandsaw or similar that cut true 45o angles (ours is a little off), but oh well....I am getting very familiar with the parts as a result.

    Anyone know a good welder with a small sandblaster that would like to earn some Christmas cheer in exchange for a little bit of work? (I'm not afraid to be a welder booze **** if it means a proper job, rather than what my limited MIG experience will likely yield).
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  33. #33
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    Littel update...the Chirstmas work didn't happen...our warehouse was full of palettes for upcoming work and there was no room for my messing around. Until the warehouse empties a bit, I'm on hold on the fab stuff.

    I have been thinking, though, that I will use a bolt-on dropout system for the trailer. It'd make it easier to adjust and swap wheels, if so desired. Plus, though I don't see a need at present, I'd be able to adjust toe-in so I could tweak the way the trailer runs and tracks.
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  34. #34
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    Okay....here's the latest...

    Yesterday was a long day...First was the company funspeil....I haven't curled in ages and it showed. Of course, I have the obligatory "Man, I haven't doen that in ages" aches and pains today...

    Well, after curling and dinner, I went over to the warehouse at work. I figured I had a couple hours and I might as well do a bit before I stiffened up.

    I managed to get all the steel cleaned up of the excess left by the cut-off saw (see that sparky pic). The grinder got a good workout. Thing are trimmed, but not all fit to one another yet. I do the final fitting as I am laying things out for welding.

    Speaking of welding, I think I found the right settings. I straight welded my two scrap pieces together after giving them the same treatment as the other pieces. To test, I placed the end closest to the weld (about 6-8" away) on the ground and the other on a 16" tall tool box. I then stood my 240lbs of clydesdale self on the fabricated part just above the weld. After doing one side, I spun the piece 90 degrees and tried it again...and so on until I had done all 4 sides. I managed to get one of the welds to start cracking (no tramatic failure this time), but I also managed to bend the 3/4" square steel tubing.

    I'd say that means the setting are right and the welds should be strong enough for what I'm doing.
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  35. #35
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    The next thing I did was laid out the base piece (spine, front, back and right side). I fitted all the pieces together and trimmed to eliminate as much of the gaps as possible. Following that, out came the welder again. I did the outside pieces of the base first. I started withthe top surface, then went inside and followed it up with the outside. Once done that, I picked up the frame, flipped it over and did the other side. A few touch-ups here and there and voila, the first part was done.

    I then fit the reinfocing pieces to what I had just finished putting together and welded those in there too. So now, in total, I have a rectangle with a tail extending off one corner (future towing arm) and steel reinforcements dividing the "interior" into 4 parts.

    Sorry, no pics from the fab job...I was there alone and without the camera. I'll get pictures on Monday of what I've done to date and see about posting them.

    My next move will be to fabricate the top rails into a rectangle, grind certain welds on the top and base, trim the side pieces to match in terms of length and then put the body together. After that, it is just a matter of putting together and attaching the wheel wells and finishing the towing arm. Once all that is done, what is left will be bolted together (drop outs and hitch).

    I'll have to do some grinding to make things pretty...as I said, I'm not an expert welder. I'll also likely add some 90 degree brackets on the outside and bottom (outside and top for the upper part) or something similar just to give it a little more strength.

    Anyone have any suggestions for colors? I've been comtemplating trying to match oneof my bikes, but then it won't match the others in our house, I've also considered plain black (utility trailer special but will show dirt really easy) or a grey (neutral to work with all the bikes in our house). Anybody got any thoughts?
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  36. #36
    ravingbikefiend
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    I'm getting all the bits together for my trailer and salvaged a really nice u joint that will be getting the third
    swivel machined to make it a 3 axis hitch that I plan to mounted behind the rear wheel on a chainstay mount.

    I am also pondering making a u shaped mount to attach to both stays with the drive mounted side being more
    of a reinforcement/stabilizer to better distribute stresses on the frame.

    I want the hitch to stay as low as possible as this will make the trailer very stable.

    I'm going to recycle an old bicyle frame and make up the lugs on my lathe and pre-machine the tubes so
    I can braze most of the joints. A little welding will probably be needed and I have the okay to do this at the
    shop under the tutelage of one of our pyromaniacs who's very interested in this whole bike trailer project.

    I creative juices are definately flowing here.
    I ride with 65'er...he's a mountain goat....But then again, we need to throw him in the mud and pack his pockets with lead shot before a scale will read him. - Psycho Mike

    -Environmental stickers don't mean shite when they are stuck to CARS!-

  37. #37
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    hehehe.... Glad I sparked something.

    Hey 65'er....any line on a set of 26" front wheels? I've got tires and tubes, but no wheels to mount them on to put together for the trailer. Either that, of I've got to find a couple 24" wheels/tires/tube combos. I think that the 24" units would be better as they would make the trailer sit more level when attached to the mountain bike...

    The next time you're over at EBC, have a gander for me, will ya?
    As if four times wasn't enough-> Psycho Mike's 2013 Ride to Conquer Cancer Page

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  38. #38
    ravingbikefiend
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    I bet there's something over at EBC that would work and 24's sound like the way to go for the aforementioned level ride.

    Happy torching.
    I ride with 65'er...he's a mountain goat....But then again, we need to throw him in the mud and pack his pockets with lead shot before a scale will read him. - Psycho Mike

    -Environmental stickers don't mean shite when they are stuck to CARS!-

  39. #39
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    kewl beans...I'll have to stop by there before too long and get my renewal too
    As if four times wasn't enough-> Psycho Mike's 2013 Ride to Conquer Cancer Page

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  40. #40
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    Ok...as promised....


    Here is one of my coworkers (identity hidden to protect the innocent or guilty ) holding the base as it sites right now.



    Next thing to do is the top, then the columns to make it into the big box it should be. After that it is slap on some wheel wells, finish the towing arm, bolt on some drop-outs and wheels and...badda-bing, badda-boom, it's ready for painting
    As if four times wasn't enough-> Psycho Mike's 2013 Ride to Conquer Cancer Page

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  41. #41
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    Tonight I hit the hardware store. I now have the channel steel to make dropouts and some re-inforcing bits and self-taping screws (probably not needed, but I was planning on it anyway, esp. as this trailer may see MUT and singletrack use).

    I get a sneaking suspicion that I'll be spending a little time in the warehouse this weekend (though I may need to drop by EBC to see of there are any good 24" wheels around).
    As if four times wasn't enough-> Psycho Mike's 2013 Ride to Conquer Cancer Page

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  42. #42
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    Just a quick update....looks like there may be a little delay on the next part of the build. The guys who use the warehouse are gearing up for another job, so the place is pretty packed again....and likely will be for a couple weeks.

    I may try to sneak in a little later tomorrow to see what I can do... I'm got everything lined up and I just can't wait to get 'er done.
    As if four times wasn't enough-> Psycho Mike's 2013 Ride to Conquer Cancer Page

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  43. #43
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    Another productive day...

    Happy Easter all....

    I made use of a little of my spare time to work on the trailer a bit more. The base has had a bit of the welding slag cleaned up and my little reinforcements at the corners added.

    I fit and welded the top rails together today as well. As you can see....I'm using a bit of welding kung-fu on this one



    My thanks to Sixty Fiver for stopping by and taking some photos for me.

    Once the welding was done, I cleaned it up a bit, marked the areas that may need some touch-ups and got the reinforcements in place there too. I've cut some channel steel for use as drop outs, but I'll wait on fabricating and attaching the wheel wells until I have a set of wheels in hand. I did get the first brace welded on to the towing arm while I was in the neighbourhood.

    At the end of the day, I used the two pieces that are welded together, some clamps and the columns that will be used to connect the top and bottom for a mock up. Here's what it looks like at this point...



    It is starting to look like what it is supposed to look like...which is kinda exciting. Anyway, I'll post more as I get it done. Until next time
    As if four times wasn't enough-> Psycho Mike's 2013 Ride to Conquer Cancer Page

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  44. #44
    ravingbikefiend
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    I can't wait to see the trailer when it's finished.

    I have all the materials I need and once I get to machining the lugs and fab my hitch my trailer should come together pretty quickly...there will be more prep but the assembly should go pretty quickly as brazing is quicker than welding.
    I ride with 65'er...he's a mountain goat....But then again, we need to throw him in the mud and pack his pockets with lead shot before a scale will read him. - Psycho Mike

    -Environmental stickers don't mean shite when they are stuck to CARS!-

  45. #45
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    Kewl...you'll have to start your own thread and keep us updated on your progress too, 65'er.
    As if four times wasn't enough-> Psycho Mike's 2013 Ride to Conquer Cancer Page

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  46. #46
    ravingbikefiend
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    Ah... I'll just hijack this thread.

    I ride with 65'er...he's a mountain goat....But then again, we need to throw him in the mud and pack his pockets with lead shot before a scale will read him. - Psycho Mike

    -Environmental stickers don't mean shite when they are stuck to CARS!-

  47. #47
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    *laff* nah, we'll make a "Vol. 2" just for you
    As if four times wasn't enough-> Psycho Mike's 2013 Ride to Conquer Cancer Page

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  48. #48
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    Well, tonight I went in to tackle putting that mock-up together into the real thing. Sorry, no pics of the work this time...the camera wasn't charged so I left it at home. I'll try to get some pics tomorrow and post them

    Anyway, the "box" of the trailer is now together. Took a little bit and I still have some clean-up and such to do, plus adding my little re-inforcements here and there, but it is coming together. I'll have to drop by EBC on wed. to grab wheels....I'm at the point where I won't be able to do much more without them

    Oh well...progress is still being made
    As if four times wasn't enough-> Psycho Mike's 2013 Ride to Conquer Cancer Page

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  49. #49
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    Ok...little delayed, but here is the pic showing where the frame is at...



    Tonight I went to EBC and I mangaged to piece a couple of wheels and tires for the trailer. Fortunately, the hub width on the 24" wheels is exactly what I planned for, so the next time I'm building, I can get the wheel wells together and attached to the frame. From there, it is just mounting the drop outs and finishing off the hitch.

    I'll keep you posted as to the progress as it happens
    As if four times wasn't enough-> Psycho Mike's 2013 Ride to Conquer Cancer Page

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  50. #50
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    Oh, by the way....with the wheels I picked up from EBC, the trailer will have about 12.5 inches of clearance from the ground to the bottom of the frame. It will be a little more tippy when hauling bigger/heavier stuff, but it will have no problem following behind me on MUTs or even some wider singletrack.
    As if four times wasn't enough-> Psycho Mike's 2013 Ride to Conquer Cancer Page

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  51. #51
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    Tonight was another good night. I dropped about $40 for the last things I needed to complete the trailer. I'll have to tally it up in the future, but even with primer and paint, I will be somewhere near the $100 mark for the build (plus my time, but it kept me busy/entertained, so it doesn't count)

    I now have the adapter to fit my hitch to the trailer and the expanded steel mesh that will form the bottom. I'll be adding an accessory liner for the "box" made from canvas once it is completed, but that isn't really a part of the main build.

    Now all I need to do it put it all together!
    As if four times wasn't enough-> Psycho Mike's 2013 Ride to Conquer Cancer Page

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  52. #52
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    Okay...yesterday was another productive day. After being at a first aid competition until the early afternoon, I dropped by Rona for a couple brackets I forgot (needed 4, only had picked up two).

    A little later, I dropped by the warehouse and did a little work. Both wheel wells are now fabricated and attached to the bike, as is the towing arm extension (angled piece). I've fit the adapter and hitch to the frame as well. When I was done for the day, I slipped the wheels into the wells and did a mock-up of the entire trailer. (sorry, no pics at this point as I didn't have the camera with me....I'll get some before I do the next bit of work).

    I also started to trim the expanded steel mesh floor that will go in the trailer.

    All that is left is to fabricate and attach my brace for the towing arm extension, clean up and touch up any welds that need it, add my reinforcing (drill and bold on), fabricate and test the drop outs, finish and weld in the floor in place and then it can be sand blasted and primed.

    I'll leave it just primed for a bit to allow me to put it through its' paces before deciding it it is "done"...easy enough to take out the bolts for hitch and drop-outs before I paint it to match the bike.
    As if four times wasn't enough-> Psycho Mike's 2013 Ride to Conquer Cancer Page

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  53. #53
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    Oh...that reminds me...

    The trailer is a bit bigger overall than my original vision....sometimes it is hard to put things into scale when sitting in front of a computer rendering or using a tape measure in your office. It'll end up being a hair bit heavier that I was intending too....but if I've done it right, the weight shouldn't be that noticeable.

    Going to the mesh floor vs. plywood has shaved off about 1/2 lb and I'm sure I've shaved a little off going to 24" wheels and tires. My idea for a canvas liner/box bag will shave a lot off of the plywood inserts I had been thinking of too. Right now, I think the size rather than the weight is the most awkward thing about it.

    I'll post pics when I get them done.
    As if four times wasn't enough-> Psycho Mike's 2013 Ride to Conquer Cancer Page

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  54. #54
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    Ok....yesterday was another good day. Got a free tire upgrade from a co-worker who's son had a bike with a 24" rear but has since upgraded. He had 2 almost new (one still has the "whiskers") 24" tires with a good solid center band and some decent tread on both sides. Should make the trailer quicker on the concrete but still ablt to grip where it needs to on the trails.
    Last edited by Psycho Mike; 05-01-2007 at 11:08 PM.
    As if four times wasn't enough-> Psycho Mike's 2013 Ride to Conquer Cancer Page

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  55. #55
    ravingbikefiend
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    I scored some really nice 24 inch wheelchair wheels... they have sealed bearings and alloy rims and should handle everything I can toss at them.

    I can get more too.

    Besides that...I brought home all my trailer building bits yesterday (on my bike no-less) and should have my trailer ready for use by the weekend.
    I ride with 65'er...he's a mountain goat....But then again, we need to throw him in the mud and pack his pockets with lead shot before a scale will read him. - Psycho Mike

    -Environmental stickers don't mean shite when they are stuck to CARS!-

  56. #56
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    hehehe....

    You'd better post some pics of your build, 65'er!
    As if four times wasn't enough-> Psycho Mike's 2013 Ride to Conquer Cancer Page

    Moran? Let your opinion be free -> F88me

  57. #57
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    I stopped by Rona tonight and got the last of the supplies I'll need for the trailer. I found the most nearly matching paint I could find. It is the right shade of blue, but just not a metallic. Considering how much getting paint mixed up would be, this seems acceptable.

    I've got the wire brush, primer, paint and some grinder wheels for the last of the trimming and "cleaning up." Now all I need is a night to "gitrdun."
    As if four times wasn't enough-> Psycho Mike's 2013 Ride to Conquer Cancer Page

    Moran? Let your opinion be free -> F88me

  58. #58
    ravingbikefiend
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    MIke - I figure that I should have my trailer done by tomorrow and am trying to snap a few pics of the process as I think the engineer in you will really like the approach I decided to take on the build.

    I can't wait to see pics of your trailer and can't wait to get mine on the road as it will make so many things easier since I parked my car for the season.
    I ride with 65'er...he's a mountain goat....But then again, we need to throw him in the mud and pack his pockets with lead shot before a scale will read him. - Psycho Mike

    -Environmental stickers don't mean shite when they are stuck to CARS!-

  59. #59
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    Well, today I grabbed some material for the "box liner" of the trailer. The fabric basically matches the frame color and will be installed when smaller items will be carried (to keep them from sliding out the sides, which are built up to haul bigger things or act as a flat bed).

    Realistically, I think I can have my trailer usable in about 4-6 hours of work...all that is really left is fabricating and adding a brace to the towing arm, fabricating the drop-outs from the angle steel I have, finish trimming the floor and then mounting wheels, drop-outs and floor to the trailer itself.

    After that, everything else is cosmetic. I'm going to clean up the welds, take off the extra bits and wire brush everything. From there it will be a coat of primer, a couple coats of paint, re-assemble everything and it is good to go.
    As if four times wasn't enough-> Psycho Mike's 2013 Ride to Conquer Cancer Page

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  60. #60
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    Last night was a spectacular night in terms of trailer building. The fabrication part of the equation is complete. Sorry for the big pic (I'll resize it later), but here's what it looks like as rolling stock.



    The floor is just laid in for now....I'll tack weld it in once I get the frame cleaned up (the beam in the top right has been cleaned, hence the different color).

    After that, it is primer time, then it will be time to paint. As I noted before, I've got a color to match the Cake (minus the metallic) fairly well so it should be a nice combo
    As if four times wasn't enough-> Psycho Mike's 2013 Ride to Conquer Cancer Page

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  61. #61
    ravingbikefiend
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    Mike - That trailer is looking mighty fine.

    I keep thinking of all the things I'll be able to do now that I have a trailer and the amount of gear we could haul for trailwork sessions with two trailers.

    I have no idea how much my trailer will carry but the framework makes me think 100 lbs wouldn't be a problem and who wants to drag more than that up a hill ?
    I ride with 65'er...he's a mountain goat....But then again, we need to throw him in the mud and pack his pockets with lead shot before a scale will read him. - Psycho Mike

    -Environmental stickers don't mean shite when they are stuck to CARS!-

  62. #62
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    Ok, here is the trailer at the end of the above mentioned night:



    Then with the floor laid in to see what it would look like...



    It was looking good

    It was a fair bit and was looking good.
    As if four times wasn't enough-> Psycho Mike's 2013 Ride to Conquer Cancer Page

    Moran? Let your opinion be free -> F88me

  63. #63
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    Ain't that the truth! It is overbuilt to take the punishment, but even helping a friend move, I'll be sticking to the flats!

    Here's another shot of the frame as it sits now



    Can't wait to get it primed and painted now
    As if four times wasn't enough-> Psycho Mike's 2013 Ride to Conquer Cancer Page

    Moran? Let your opinion be free -> F88me

  64. #64
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    Hey... I can join the trailer game now too. I picked up a BOB YAK at the MEC gear swap. It was one of those too good to pass up deals. Not as big or fancy as the ones you guys are building, but I'll be able to tour with the Epic now without worrying about not having anyplace to put saddlebags.

  65. #65
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    hehehe, nah, Ribald, this is for those who build their own

    But we'll let you join our club if you bolt on something to your Yak to customize it maybe a "don't hit me flag" or something....after all, then you made it something different than it was
    As if four times wasn't enough-> Psycho Mike's 2013 Ride to Conquer Cancer Page

    Moran? Let your opinion be free -> F88me

  66. #66
    ravingbikefiend
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    My trailer is pretty simple and anyone with a hacksaw, a screwdriver, and drill could build a similar unit. I figure my materials cost me just under $100.00 and that included some new drill bits that I can write off.

    If it handles the real world testing I plan on putting it through I'll then feel comfy offering the plans to other folks.
    I ride with 65'er...he's a mountain goat....But then again, we need to throw him in the mud and pack his pockets with lead shot before a scale will read him. - Psycho Mike

    -Environmental stickers don't mean shite when they are stuck to CARS!-

  67. #67
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    Since I'll be towing it behind a carbon roadie for the most part, maybe a "it's not stolen, I just don't like tights" sign would be better than a don't hit me sign.

    For now, it's in storage... along with all but two of my bikes.

    I was thinking of building a trailer as well, but for $40 I took the lazy route.

  68. #68
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    Fair enuf

    Well, last night was another good trailer night. The frame got a good sanding / cleaning, the deck has been permanently attached (weld-o-rama, baby!) and the works has had a coat of primer sprayed on.

    I did take some photos. but I can't post them until later today or tomorrow (haven't downloaded them yet).
    As if four times wasn't enough-> Psycho Mike's 2013 Ride to Conquer Cancer Page

    Moran? Let your opinion be free -> F88me

  69. #69
    ravingbikefiend
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    ribald - If I could score a little trailer for $40.00 to tow behind the roadies I'd be all over that.

    Sophia (the Bianchi) is stripped to the bone and won't be set up for carrying anything but me but a little trailer would be a handy thing for longer road trips.
    I ride with 65'er...he's a mountain goat....But then again, we need to throw him in the mud and pack his pockets with lead shot before a scale will read him. - Psycho Mike

    -Environmental stickers don't mean shite when they are stuck to CARS!-

  70. #70
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    Well, here are some pics of the work I did Wed. night:

    Here is what the frame looks like without the rust and with the deck welded in. I think it would have made a beautiful "raw" finish



    Next comes a shot of my clyde butt getting a little primer action happening...



    On my right elbow you can see what is left of the gravel rash from a couple weeks ago. Only red now because the skin is thinner and you can see the capillaries closer to the surface.

    Finally, what it looks like all primed and ready for some color:



    Next stop is a little dark blue color. I figure if I give it a coat tomorrow before I leave work and one on Saturday, then Sunday I can bring the beast home and take it on its shakedown cruise.
    As if four times wasn't enough-> Psycho Mike's 2013 Ride to Conquer Cancer Page

    Moran? Let your opinion be free -> F88me

  71. #71
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    Today coat number 2 of the blue went on. Tomorrow it'll be dry and I can re-assemble and tow home
    As if four times wasn't enough-> Psycho Mike's 2013 Ride to Conquer Cancer Page

    Moran? Let your opinion be free -> F88me

  72. #72
    ravingbikefiend
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    I can't wait to see the trailer...

    Mine has been getting a good workout as it's handling what the trunk of my car used to... I have to make a grocery run in a little bit and am hoping that later this evening I'll be able to get out for a purely recreational ride without any trailer or multiple gears.

    I was thinking of taking the GT fixie for a liesurely spin down and around Hawrelak Park since it's such a glorious day for riding..
    I ride with 65'er...he's a mountain goat....But then again, we need to throw him in the mud and pack his pockets with lead shot before a scale will read him. - Psycho Mike

    -Environmental stickers don't mean shite when they are stuck to CARS!-

  73. #73
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    Well....ask and you shall receive

    Here is the completed unit:



    and what project would be complete without showing both together...

    I do notice the extra weight, but once up to speed, it handles just fine. I am undecided about the hitch...may want to go to the skewer one after all. We'll see.
    As if four times wasn't enough-> Psycho Mike's 2013 Ride to Conquer Cancer Page

    Moran? Let your opinion be free -> F88me

  74. #74
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    Mike- That looks mighty sweet... great job.

    I noticed the same thing with my trailer in that the weight is only an issue when you're accellerating or climbing...on flat ground maintaining speed isn't a big deal even with a good load on.

    I took the trailer shopping the other night and was pretty pleased to be able to take advantage on a good sale price on toilet paper.
    I ride with 65'er...he's a mountain goat....But then again, we need to throw him in the mud and pack his pockets with lead shot before a scale will read him. - Psycho Mike

    -Environmental stickers don't mean shite when they are stuck to CARS!-

  75. #75
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    Thanks for the compliment, 65'er. I'm fairly happy with it...especially given that this is the first time I've ever manufactured something like this. Up close, there are a few things I'd have liked to improved on, but a blind man would be happy to see the rough edges.

    I hauled all the "stuff" from the assembly home tonight using the trailer. Not too bad for the inaugural "flight." Had to tighten the wheels when I got home, but other than that, she done good.

    I know what you mean about the acceleration and stuff. The elastomer and spring of the hitch give a bit more "reverb" in the acceleration department.

    I may change my current hitch layout to the original idea I had...the way it sits now I'm not getting as much clearance on the rotor of my disc brakes as I'd like...may need to swing it to an under mount rather and an outside mount. Or maybe even go to the "skewer" mount...we'll see
    As if four times wasn't enough-> Psycho Mike's 2013 Ride to Conquer Cancer Page

    Moran? Let your opinion be free -> F88me

  76. #76
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    I'm liking my u-joint hitch... I did stiffen things up with a drive side brace that took all of ten minutes to fabricate and that has been working fine.
    I ride with 65'er...he's a mountain goat....But then again, we need to throw him in the mud and pack his pockets with lead shot before a scale will read him. - Psycho Mike

    -Environmental stickers don't mean shite when they are stuck to CARS!-

  77. #77
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    I think that all I need to do is rotate the hitch to a bottom tie-in ( one of my two original ideas) and maybe add a brace arm just to make sure it won't rotate under load. The clearance to the rotor is a little tight and if the hitch moves at all, it could contact. With a bottom tie-in, I can gain some more clearance for my foot and the rotor.

    We'll see...
    As if four times wasn't enough-> Psycho Mike's 2013 Ride to Conquer Cancer Page

    Moran? Let your opinion be free -> F88me

  78. #78
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    Here's the final tally:

    $158.09 Cdn including GST.

    That being said, I have parts and stuff left over. Without the "left-overs" it'd be almost spot on $150.

    Not bad considering the cheapest trailer (basically a towing arm, wheels and fibreboard deck) I've seen commercially produced comes in at $259+tax and Bob's start at $350.
    As if four times wasn't enough-> Psycho Mike's 2013 Ride to Conquer Cancer Page

    Moran? Let your opinion be free -> F88me

  79. #79
    ravingbikefiend
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    I figure I spent 100.00 on my trailer which included some new drill bits although I still haven't found the right decking which will probably be fabbed from some salvaged / recycled materials.

    It got a good workout yesterday and ran out beautifully... it has also received some positive comments from folks who have looked it over and I've had a few requests to see if I could build a few more.

    I'll wait until I have tested the crap out of it before I consider making any more for anyone else.
    I ride with 65'er...he's a mountain goat....But then again, we need to throw him in the mud and pack his pockets with lead shot before a scale will read him. - Psycho Mike

    -Environmental stickers don't mean shite when they are stuck to CARS!-

  80. #80
    Double-metric mtb man
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    Well, today I added a safety flag to the trailer (It's big, but not that big...safety first).

    I tried playing around with the hitch a bit, but I'm still not satisfied with it. I think I will see about going to the next generation hitch by Chariot (ezHitch) as I know it will be a "drop in" upgrade.
    As if four times wasn't enough-> Psycho Mike's 2013 Ride to Conquer Cancer Page

    Moran? Let your opinion be free -> F88me

  81. #81
    Double-metric mtb man
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    Got the new hitch and threw it on tonight. Wow!! Big difference. The feedback is all but eliminated and the trailer actually seems to accelerate better.

    Many kudos out to the Source for Sports (sorry, I can't remember the exact store name, but it is part of the SfS chain up in Ft. McMurray....I stopped in and happened to see that they carry Chariot stuff and they hooked me up with the upgrade at a great price.
    As if four times wasn't enough-> Psycho Mike's 2013 Ride to Conquer Cancer Page

    Moran? Let your opinion be free -> F88me

  82. #82
    Double-metric mtb man
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    Also....went over to Hardcore tonight and threw the trailer on the scale.

    It is now officially going to be called "Goliath" as it is a heck of a lot beefier than I thought it would be. It turns out my guesses were off by 10lbs. Part of that are the extras (lights, flag, reflectors and such) and the heavier than anticipated wheels (at least a couple lbs right there).

    As it turns out, Goliath tips the scales at a whopping 43.5 lbs!

    Considering how well it tracks and rolls, that came as a big surprise. If there is a Goliath II, it will be going on a bit of a diet....both in terms of size and weight. Considering the size and homebuilt nature though, Goliath is actually not as bad as it could have been.

    Anyway, that should be just about it for the build thread for my trailer....thanks for reading and posting everyone
    As if four times wasn't enough-> Psycho Mike's 2013 Ride to Conquer Cancer Page

    Moran? Let your opinion be free -> F88me

  83. #83
    ravingbikefiend
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    Come on... I want to see a picture of "Goliath" loaded up with a few hundred pounds of stuff.

    I'm going to weigh my trailer as my inquiring mind wants to know how much she curbs out at and in other news, I found my decking material.

    Carbolight... my neighbour had some kicking around and gave me a sheet of it.
    I ride with 65'er...he's a mountain goat....But then again, we need to throw him in the mud and pack his pockets with lead shot before a scale will read him. - Psycho Mike

    -Environmental stickers don't mean shite when they are stuck to CARS!-

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